Need a quick lifeline to help survive coparenting with a toxic ex over the holidays? Here are a few key tips to help you buckle up for Christmas:
Review your court order…and follow it
If you have had a high-conflict divorce, there is likely a holiday parenting schedule in your agreement or court order that has been preordained. Drag it out from hiding and refer to it. Make sure your plans align with what it says. If your ex is difficult, it is probably not worth straying from the order. Just follow it without any drama. Simple decision.
Christmas can be any day
Don’t have your kids for the calendared Christmas eve or morning? Not a problem. You get to have the Christmas you envision any day you want. Celebrate Christmas eve on Dec 23 if you ex has the kids on Dec. 24. I bet your family will come along for the ride. You can believe that this is exactly the way it is supposed to be on this most interesting year. If this is no problem for you in your mind, it will be no problem for your kids.
The ex is not a problem
Don’t like how your ex behaves? Better buckle up over Christmas. Get ready for the shenanigans. This is when he will stay up until 2am playing Fortnight with your 11 year old. Maybe she will introduce the kids to her new partners parents on Christmas Eve. Everything that your ex says and does is just a neutral circumstance. It is neither good or bad until you have a thought about it. You don’t have to think that it is a problem. I suggest that you deliberately decide whatever your ex does is not a problem. Instead, choose to believe that your kids are going to be amazing because they have you. Remember my theory: kids only need one healthy parent.
Show yourself love
The holidays as a single parent can be tricky. This is not at all what we signed up for! Make sure that you treat yourself with the love and respect that you would show your best friend. Give yourself grace to feel all of your feelings…then get up and dust yourself off. Put on your cape and get on with enjoying the holidays. You’ve got this.