The holiday season tends to be hectic for everyone, regardless of their relationship status or if they have kids. However, if you share custody of children born during a failed relationship, it can be even more stressful. Fortunately, there are steps that you can take to make things easier for everyone without having to visit an Illinois courtroom.
Plan for everything
Ideally, you’ll divide child custody & parenting time long before the holiday season arrives. This ensures that your children know what is happening, and it also means that you can make alternate holiday plans if your ex has the kids on Thanksgiving or Christmas day themselves. However, it’s possible that plans can change if your children are sick, you get sick or your car breaks down. If you suspect that your former partner is going to flake out at the last minute, you can put a contingency plan in place before that happens.
Your kids deserve quality memories
Regardless of the details of the plan put in place, it should allow your children to make happy memories that will last a lifetime. This might mean that you allow your children to spend an entire school break with your former partner and their extended family. It may also mean that your partner gets extended visitation time during the Christmas holiday to spend time with your children.
The best parenting plans tend to be the ones that are structured around a philosophy of common sense and flexibility. During the holiday season, it may be necessary to give up some parenting time or make other changes to an existing plan to ensure that your children are happy. Being flexible may also help to build a stronger bond between yourself and the other parent.