Christmas is a time that many people choose to spend with their families. However, separated partners with children can find the festive time of year challenging as they have to divide their children’s time between two homes. While this can be difficult, especially in circumstances with divorce disputes, putting the interest of the children involved first is essential.
Just like with any family disputes, communication is essential, even if it is only arranging a time to meet. It’s important to try and be fair and for the former couple to think about what is best for their children. Any arguments can be distressing for kids and can have a damaging effect on them at a time of year that’s supposed to be fun and exciting.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a universal solution that ensures everyone involved in a divorce is happy at Christmas. However, there are some strategies that can help separated partners reach an amicable agreement over the time they share with their children over the festive period.
How Should Separated Partners Share Children’s Time At Christmas
As we’ve mentioned, communication can be challenging, but it’s crucial to a productive parental relationship for separated partners. If there has been a divorce dispute recently, this can make communicating especially difficult. A solution to this is for separated partners to contact family law specialists who can act as intermediaries between both parties. Even after two parties have divorced, family law advisors can help them to communicate and come to an agreement over a range of subjects.
One of the best pieces of advice for separated partners who are struggling to communicate is to find out ways of speaking that work for them. One example of this is for both parties to only initially contact each other via text message or email. This can help to create a barrier between both parties if they still have unresolved problems to deal with.
Communicating through email is especially useful as it takes longer to respond, which allows each party to consider what they’re saying before pressing send. If they were to speak on the phone, they may say things they later regret, while speaking through text or email gives both parties breathing room to consider what they want to say.
Family law advisors will often help separated partners by organising time for them to sit down face to face and communicate amicably. In this scenario they may act as mediators or leave both parties alone, it will depend on the circumstances. Often, after a long and drawn-out divorce dispute, sitting down for the first time to chat together can help break a deadlock and improve relations for everyone moving forward.
Surprisingly, even the most bitter disagreements have arisen out of a misunderstanding between both parties. Finally being able to discuss issues calmly can help bring this to light and improve how separated partners communicate. For parents, this can be highly beneficial for their children.
If separated parents can communicate at Christmas, they can make arrangements that benefit them and most importantly benefit their children. Here are some strategies for separated partners making arrangements for Christmas this year:
Making Arrangements For Christmas
Start planning for the festive period as soon as possible. Parents should aim to make an agreement quickly, so any children know what is going on and both parties can plan other aspects of their holidays. The first thing parents should do is communicate with each other to understand their feelings and what they want. This will hopefully lead to a compromise being reached where both parties are happy at Christmas.
It’s also essential that the child or children’s feelings are taken into account as well. Parents should keep them in the loop as much as possible and try to work towards a solution that makes their children happy, not only themselves.
When an agreement is reached in advance, it removes a lot of the stress that may come from arguments around Christmas day. It also gives a person time to seek family law advice if they feel it’s necessary. Having a plan in advance provides children with stability and shows them that their parents care about their feelings as well.
Being Unable To Reach An Agreement
When separated partners are unable to agree on plans for Christmas day involving children, it may be a good idea for them to contact a family law expert. They can advise the person on the best course of action to take in their circumstances. Family lawyers also have experience supporting other families in similar scenarios, so can suggest strategies proven to have helped in similar situations before.
Family law experts can also act as an intermediary or mediator in any discussions between parents. While many mediators are still offering face to face meetings to facilitate an agreement, further COVID-19 restrictions could stop these from occurring. If face to face meetings aren’t possible, discussions can take place digitally.
Family lawyers understand that involving the court in family matters is always a last resort. However, sometimes it is necessary and they can advise and support someone on their best course of action. This may include applying to the court to determine arrangements for the children of separated parents.
This is another reason why it’s good for parents to discuss Christmas arrangements well in advance of the actual day as if the application is lodged too late, it’s less likely the court will be able to make a ruling before Christmas day.
Bp Collins Family Law Buckinghamshire
BP Collins are experts in family law in Buckinghamshire, who can offer supportive advice to separated partners so they can reach a fair agreement over childcare this Christmas. To find out more, call them on +44 (0) 1753 889995 or read more about their family law services today.