As the holiday season approaches, separated or recently divorced people may feel stressed or anxious. Some of this stress or anxiety stems from stereotypes this time of year. Those stereotypes do not always fit a divorced person’s reality.
People can learn ways of coping that help them not only survive the holidays, but even thrive through them.
Living through the holidays on the heels of a divorce
Romance and families receive intense attention at the holidays. This may contribute to a person who ended a marriage feel inadequate. But, Psychology Today encourages divorced or separated people to keep a clear head, remembering that many marriages struggle. Marriage can be a positive and fulfilling thing, but marriage in and of itself does not guarantee happiness.
Divorced or separated people should focus on taking good care of themselves. They can develop a positive support system of friends, family members and neighbors. This network can open the door to many enjoyable holiday events.
Parenting during the holidays after a divorce
Children need their parents to help them through a post-divorce holiday season, especially when it is the first holiday season after a parental divorce. Forbes recommends that divorced moms and dads avoid the urge to compete with each other via gift-giving or other means. In this type of situation, the children end up in the middle, and nobody wins.
Moms and dads should collaborate to develop holiday schedules that do not tire kids out but that provide plenty of opportunities for quality time. Balancing fun with both parents with some downtime can help kids and parents alike.