Haute Lawyer Janice Roven Offers a Guide to the Holidays During the Divorce Process

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It is that time of year again. You are in the process of getting divorced, and don’t know what the holidays will look like.
In general, the holidays are divided. They can be divided in different manners. Essentially, in ways that work best for your family. For example, if you have young children, one parent can have Christmas Eve and one parent will have Christmas Day. In many agreements, the parent who has Christmas Day will have the first few days of vacation. Thereafter, you can divide New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day in the same manner. One parent has the children for New Year’s Eve and the other parent had the children for New Year’s Day. If the children are older, you may want to divide the holiday as a whole per year.
One parent gets the entire holiday in odd years and the other parent gets the children for even years.
The most important issue with respect to the holidays is that the schedule works for your family. Don’t be spiteful when you are making the schedule. For example, if you do not celebrate Christmas and your spouse does, you should think seriously about giving your spouse every Christmas. This gesture could go a long way in the negotiations. Make sure the calendar is thoughtful for the adults and the children.
If there is a Court order in place. Follow the Court Order. Judges are not happy when they find out that a litigant did not follow their Order and a parent missed their ability to celebrate the holiday.
Remember the holidays are supposed to be celebrations for the children. Be mindful of how you communicate to the children of the holidays and that you will not be seeing them. Emphasize the positive of the children having two celebrations. If it is not your time to see the children, make plans for yourself. Do not stay home and look at the four walls in the hopes that the children will come and visit.
The most important thing to think about when negotiating the holidays is what will work best for your family. What is ideal for your family may not be ideal for your family. It is, therefore, critical that you have conversations with your spouse if that is possible. If that is not possible, have an extensive conversation with your attorney and discuss the various options.
Best of luck in the journey.