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The holiday season is stressful for
many, often requiring so much time and energy we find ourselves enduring this
time instead of enjoying the beauty of the season. Add a recent divorce or going through the divorce
process to this time of year, and it can become difficult to feel like
celebrating at all. Especially when dealing with a divorce, it is important to hold
on to some traditions and remember that the holidays are about peace, sharing,
gratitude and love. All things that are most needed in times of distress. The
way that you spend the holidays may change after divorce, but over time new
traditions and memories will be created.
Simplifying your holiday season in
stressful times is an important goal. Start by accepting a friend or family
member’s offer to prepare the holiday meal, narrowing down your gift-giving list,
bringing out only your favorite holiday decorations, and using downtime for
yourself instead of over scheduling.
After a divorce is a perfect time to consider what YOU want to
prioritize during the holidays, and focus on only those things.
Many times, divorce means a tighter
budget, which can lead to added anxiety during this time of year. However, your
gifts of time and attention are the most valuable you can give. Make a budget
for gifts you want to purchase, and don’t overspend. Remember what truly
matters this holiday season.
If you have children, it’s even more
important to focus on your emotional and physical health during this time of
year. Children of divorced parents benefit from efforts made to keep their
lives and schedules consistent. As hard as it can be in times of stress,
maintaining familiar holiday traditions as well as creating new ones will
benefit your entire family.
When divorced parents share
parenting time during the holidays, it is necessary to be flexible and patient. Inevitably, there will be a holiday when the
children are scheduled to be with your ex-spouse. These changes take time to
become accustomed to, but cooperating and avoiding conflict is best for
Out to Others
Whether or not you have children, if
you find yourself without plans for the holiday, that doesn’t mean you must
spend it alone. It is in your best interest to accept an invitation from a good
friend, or perhaps to seek out an opportunity to be of assistance to someone in
need. Use your time to do something that brings joy to you.
When recently divorced or going
through the divorce process, the holiday season can seem overwhelming. Divorce
will bring change, but the true meaning of the holidays will not disappear.
This season, focus your time and energy on things that are important to you.