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Celebrating the Holidays After Divorce

As Thanksgiving approaches, to be rapidly followed by Chanukah, Christmas, and the New Year, you may be apprehensive about all the details that need to be worked out, whether you are in the throes of a divorce or have finalized your divorce. It is important to remember, however, that even though traditions will inescapably be tweaked or replaced, you and your family can still enjoy the holiday season. Here are some ideas to help you pull this off:

Stay within your budget; this is not a competition after all. If you are recently off your divorce, your financial outlook will be different than it was before, and you may not be on the same financial footing as your ex. Either way, do not try to outspend him or her. Your family will not love you any less for not going into debt for them, nor will their love increase if you give them expensive gifts. If your children get lavish gifts from your ex, be happy for them, and bite back any rude comments you may want to make.

In fact, you can channel this desire to give fabulous gifts into a healthy way of staying active: make gifts yourself. Your loved ones may appreciate such a gift all the more, knowing the personal touches you put into it. Also, a homemade gift can help you grow your creative abilities and help you stay busy in a productive way.

After all, you may want to always give yourself something to do, especially if you fear spending the holidays by yourself. Open up your home to host friends. Help out charity, volunteering at a homeless shelter or nursing home. Not only will staying active be healthy for you, but you can provide help to people who need it.

Remember that your kids come first. Always. Shield them as much as you can from any hostilities between you and you ex, and help them through the inconveniences of a split holiday season. And this can mean helping them enjoy a holiday away from you; you do not want to manipulate them to choose more time with you over staying away from their other extended family. What matters is doing what is best for your children, whatever that may be.

Finally, interacting with your ex is likely to be inevitable over the holidays if you are co-parents. If you are polite and respectful, even generous toward them, you may be surprised at the positive results. You certainly do not have to do anything extreme; little gestures can accomplish much. And even if kindness is not reciprocated at all, it is of benefit to you to be the bigger person.

If you are in the midst of a divorce, or if you need to go back and modify child custody orders for the benefit of your children, contact the Meyers Law Group, P.C. Our Long Island divorce lawyer may be able to help you achieve your family's best interests.