Christmas is for Children….right?

Coping with Christmas when you are a separated parent can be very difficult. It can lead to feelings of isolation, jealousy and resentment.

However with some careful planning and compromise, you may be able to put the Joy back into Christmas.

It is a hectic time and hence planning carefully well in advance is vital.

Communication is key, so talking to the other parent ensures things run as smoothly as possible.

As such, here are our top tips for helping separated parents through the festive period ;

  • Always put the children first.

The children are clearly the most important people over this period so making them central to all your plans is absolutely essential.

  • Communicate, communicate and communicate again.

Talk the plans through carefully with everyone involved including grandparents and children if they are of the right age. Talk through presents to ensure there is no duplication and to avoid “who give the best present competition”.

  • Make a plan / schedule and stick to it.

When you have decided on the plan, write it up so that everyone can see it whether that be in a wall chart or an online calendar so that you all knows where you will be and when. This helps everyone understand the time they are spending with each party and see the bigger picture. This limits disruption and uncertainty. Whilst we cannot predict the future and things sometimes have to “bend”, stability will help everyone enjoy their time with the children.

  • Make the time together as special as possible.

When you do have contact, make plans to ensure that the children enjoy their time with you. However don’t turn it into a competition as this can lead to stress and disappointment and put the children in an awkward position.

  • Fill the time when you are not with the children.

Try not to be alone, worrying about not seeing the children. Plan to see friends or other family members where possible.

However, even with the best planning and coordination in the World, the Christmas period can be very difficult. If you need advice regarding contact with your children please call Lee Wilcockson or Priti Mayor at BTMK by emailing [email protected] or calling 24/7 on 03300585222.

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