As the holiday season approaches, co-parents face the unique challenge of sharing the joy and responsibilities that come with this annual celebratory opportunity. Proactive planning is key to ensuring a smooth and enjoyable holiday experience for both kids and their parents alike. Here are some essential tips to navigate the holiday season effectively as co-parents.
Because the holidays can be a stressful and logistically challenging time, it’s important to start discussing holiday plans well in advance. This will allow you to avoid (most) last-minute confusion and will allow you and your co-parent to coordinate schedules, travel plans and family gatherings, etc. Early communication also provides an opportunity to discuss and respect each other’s traditions and how they can be incorporated into the children’s holiday experience.
How to get from A to B with your co-parenting plans
When trying to plan, a shared calendar can be an invaluable tool. It can help to ensure that both parents are on the same page regarding holiday schedules, events and custody arrangements. Digital calendars can be especially useful, as they allow for real-time updates and reminders.
Where appropriate, involve your children in the planning process. This can help them feel more secure and included in the decisions that affect their holiday experience. However, do what you can to make sure that this doesn’t put them in a position of having to choose between parents.
Finally, keep in mind that flexibility tends to be necessary when co-parenting. The holiday season often results in unexpected events and changes. Being open to adjusting plans can help to ensure that your children’s best interests always remain the priority.
Proactive planning for the holidays as co-parents can turn a potentially stressful time into a season filled with more joy and better memories than might have been a possibility otherwise. Planning ahead can be a tough undertaking, but your future self will likely thank you for making the effort.