The holiday season is one that brings enough stress with it all on its own without worrying about how you will handle certain events with your divorce being finalized.  Approaching the holidays after divorce, especially when you have children, doesn’t have to be filled with anxiety.  With a bit of preparation and the right mind set the first holiday season without your ex can be the best you have had in a long time.

Some things newly divorced moms worry about is family gatherings, parties of mutual friends and of course Santa’s visit.  The one thing to remember is that this is a year of changing traditions.  The things you were traditional for you and your family at holidays pasts will be memories to share and enjoy but this year will be about new traditions.  Creating a joyful, stress free holiday is the best present two parents can give to their children whether they are married or divorced.

Some couples get along better after their divorce is final.  If this is how you are with your ex that it may be just fine to continue to celebrate Christmas morning together so that you are both able to witness the joy of the season that is shared with small children.  Santa coming is a big part of a young child’s Christmas and therefore may be one time where you will choose to come together.

If this is not the case and you and your ex are unable to be amicable then spare yourself the stress of the above scenario.  Santa can and will visit two separate homes when situations arise that he needs to.  If this is the first Christmas in which you will be celebrating separately consider going on vacation or to stay with friends.  Gifts from Santa found under a different tree then the one shared with your ex may be just the ticket to make it through this very first Christmas.

To avoid issues when it comes to the two of you making holiday plans including the children make a solid action plan a few weeks in advance.  If this is not something that will be easy for the two of you on your own consider meeting with your divorce attorney’s and having a plan drawn up that is recognized by friend of the court.  This may be the only solid way that last minute deviations to the plan are avoid and the holiday remains uncomplicated.  Never leave things up to the children or adhere to a plan with a wait and see what happens approach.  Nothing good comes of this for your children.  They will be riddle with anxiety and you will be devastated if your plans are derailed last minute because of plans your ex miscommunicated with you.

Although your kids shouldn’t be left to plan the holiday season their school schedule and personal desires should be kept in mind while creating the grand plan.  If your children have always loved cutting a tree down do this with them.  This is something that they will enjoy doing more than once within the holiday season.  Who is to say that because it was something you did with your ex it isn’t something you can continue to do without them.

Above all remember that the holiday season is all about enjoying quality time with loved ones.  This is possible to do, after your divorce!  Take a moment to create the holiday season you have always wanted.  This year there is no limit or compromise.  Plan parties, bake cookies and decorate to the fullest extent.

Longton DM, a subsidiary of Longton Law Offices is a divorce attorney specializing in Women/Mom’s in divorce throughout Trenton and the surrounding Michigan areas. Find us at