One of the most challenging aspects of being a divorced parent is planning out holidays where your children are out of school. Your kids look forward to having time off from studying—the last thing you want to subject your children to is a strenuous holiday experience because you and your former spouse can’t stop arguing. Children are already exhausted from academics, and having divorced parents adds another layer of difficulty.
When determining a holiday visitation schedule with your former spouse, it’s essential to center your children. Children’s visitation rights do not revolve around you. Although you want to show off your kids to your extended family, your child deserves quality time with both parents. This will require compromise from both you and your former spouse.
Plan in Advance
You might feel tempted to directly ask your children who they want to spend each holiday with, but you shouldn’t ask this question to children who are under 12. This is a loaded question, and it might make your child feel bad; moreover, children who are 12 and under cannot legally make this call in most states. Reserve this visitation question for teenagers, as they are more articulate and they can legally have a saying in visitation rights. The best way to decide who your children should stay with during the holidays is by sticking to the terms of your parenting plan. That way, you’ll avoid arguments with your former spouse. If the kids are staying with you for one of the holidays, make sure to schedule out time for your children to call their other parent.
Put Your Kids First
Vacations are a kid’s favorite time, so set your children’s mind at ease by openly communicating all plans with them as well. Let your children know what they can expect to do with you during the time you will be spending together. Allow your kids to pick the places they want to visit. If the holiday that’s being celebrated involves presents, do not engage in competition with your ex over giving the best presents to the kids. Remember, this holiday is about spending quality time with your children, and it’s not to spite your former spouse. Communicate with your ex about the presents you got for the children so that you can both buy gifts that are within the same budget. Deliberately gifting your children expensive presents that are worth more than what the other parent can afford is bad parenting. When you and the other parent work together and buy your children gifts that are worth a similar monetary amount, then your child won’t unfairly gravitate more toward one parent.
As a parent, your main goal should always be to prioritize your children’s happiness, but it’s also important to remain courteous to your former spouse. You and your former spouse have to collaborate frequently to sort out holiday visitation rights, so it’s best for everyone to remain civil. To resolve child custody issues, contact The Ault Firm today. Our experienced divorce attorneys are committed to protecting the rights of each client while ensuring that each child has a bright future.