Tips to Reduce Conflict with Your Co-Parent During the Holidays


The holiday season is a notoriously hectic and overwhelming time for most people, regardless of marital status. However, for recently divorced spouses who share children, this time of year is often uniquely challenging. It might amplify feelings of loneliness, depression, or spur emotional outbursts and arguments. If you truly feel your holiday visitation schedule needs modifications, do not argue with your spouse about it. Discuss your case with an attorney and handle the matter formally. If not, try to keep a cool and level head. Reducing conflict is in the best interests of your children and arguing over unresolved past issues will not do anyone any favors.

Give Your Children the Gift of a Peaceful Holiday

One of the biggest reasons why co-parents argue during the holiday season is a lack of understanding regarding the holiday visitation schedule. From your job to helping your children with their homework and trying to maintain a social life, you probably have a lot on your plate. With so much to do on a near-daily basis, it is easy to forget some of the details of your holiday visitation schedule. Before you set your heart on a specific date, be sure to review your holiday visitation schedule to avoid any conflicts.

After reviewing the holiday schedule, if there is a date you still wish to spend with the children, politely ask your former spouse in advance. Although he or she might deny your request, it does not hurt to ask, especially if you give an adequate head’s up. Just make sure you accept the denial without becoming aggressive or pushy. Your former spouse does not have to agree to your request, and it is possible he or she already has something planned on that day.

Here are some additional tips for you to consider this holiday season:

  • Work with your children to create new traditions. The new holiday traditions you build together will hold even more meaning for them if you consider their input.
  • Discuss the gifts you plan on buying for your children with your co-parent. Not only will this help you avoid one-upping each other or buying an inappropriate gift, but it can also ensure you do not purchase any duplicate gifts. After all, you both know your children equally well.
  • If your children are spending a certain holiday with your former spouse this year, try to avoid exhibiting your disappointment or sadness. Doing so will make them feel guilty and ultimately cause them pain. Instead, tell them to have a good time and let them know how much you love them.
  • Do something nice for yourself if you are alone this holiday season. There is no reason why you cannot enjoy the holidays after a divorce, even if your children cannot be with you. Visit friends or spend time with other members of your family.

Discuss Your Case with an Experienced Family Law Attorney Today!

The holidays can be a troubling time for divorced parents to navigate and, in some cases, a knowledgeable legal expert is necessary. At Julia E. Stovall Attorney at Law, our family law attorney has the insight, compassion, and experience necessary to assist you throughout this difficult process. Backed by more than 30 years of experience, you can feel confident in our ability to help you achieve your goals.

Contact our law office today at (615) 239-1374 to request a free case evaluation.