Tips on Helping Kids Get Through Divorce During the Holidays

Divorce During the Holidays

How to Help Kids Get Through Divorce During the Holidays

For those going through a divorce, the holiday season can be very difficult and painful, particularly for children.  As a parent, there are several things you can do to help smooth the holidays for your children. Here are a few ideas:

  • Encourage reminiscing – It’s okay to reminisce about past holidays. Let the children know it is okay to talk about the past. If your child gets angry when remembering past holidays, then talk about what you can do as a single parent family to make things different this year.
  • Allow children to help plan holiday celebrations – Involve the children in planning for the holiday celebrations. Ask them what traditions from the past they want to keep, and communicate about the plans so they feel a sense of security.  Keep the lines of communication open for them to express their feelings, both positive and negative.
  • Keep your routines – Do your best to keep routines the same so children can depend on some things staying the same. If you do have to interrupt the normal routine, make sure your children know in advance what is taking place.
  • Do something new – Even though children thrive with routine, change—when introduced and handled well—can be good too. This is especially true if a past tradition is too painful to continue. For example, maybe your family has always gone to pick out a tree together. But doing it without the other parent may seem overwhelming to your child. Talk about still doing this, but with a variation. Possibly you could go with another family or decide to venture out and chop down your own tree and create new traditions going forward!

Liz Porter is Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. She is a member of the family law sections of the American Bar Association, State Bar of Texas and the Dallas Bar Association. She is also a member of the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists and Dallas Young Lawyers Association and has been elected to the Annette Stewart American Inn of Court. Ms. Porter earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in communication and journalism from Texas A&M University and her Juris Doctor in 2001 from Texas Wesleyan University School of Law in Fort Worth.  Liz resides in Dallas with her three children. For more information, please visit:



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