If you have recently separated from your former partner, holiday seasons can be extremely emotional for you and your children.
I know it's only November, but now is a great time to start the conversation about your parenting arrangements for your children over the Christmas and Term 4 school holiday period.
When making arrangements you may wish to consider:
- Do you and your former partner intend to alternate the Christmas period each year or split Christmas Day itself?
- The age of the children and any views that they express;
- How/when changeover will occur, keeping in mind the level of conflict between you and your former partner;
- How you and your former partner (and your extended families) like to celebrate the Christmas period i.e. is Christmas Day or Christmas Eve more important to you or your partner or any other cultural events which occur during the holidays;
- Location of immediate and extended family and keeping in mind any travel required.
Often, recently separated couples aim to have Christmas together with their children. Although their intentions are child-focused, consideration should be given to the level of conflict between the parties as to whether a combined Christmas will, in practice, be in the children's best interests.
It is normal to be feeling sad and have a sense of grief around the holiday season if your family unit has broken down but if you start planning for the Christmas period now you may reduce the stress of leaving these matters to the last minute.
If coming to an agreement proves to be too difficult, give us a call on (02) 6331 2911. We’re here to help!
Beatrice Patterson | Solicitor