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Tips for peaceful co-parenting during the holiday season

The holidays can be a time when emotions are running high and parents may find it difficult to navigate the season without disputes and conflict. If you co-parent or you are walking through divorce and plan to co-parent, it may be helpful to know how to deal with the stress and difficulties of the holiday season. With the right perspective, you can keep the peace and protect the well-being of your kids.

One of the main sources of conflict between co-parents is the division of parenting time during the busiest time of the year. From family dinners to school performances, there are many things going on and several events you probably want your child to attend. This can make it more likely that disputes will happen and hard feelings will arise.

Keeping the holidays merry and bright 

Co-parents will find it beneficial to keep their focus on the well-being of their kids above all else this time of year. At the end of the day, the intent and purpose of any custody agreement is to shield the kids from undue duress and provide them with stability and security. Some of the things you can do to reduce the chance of conflict during the holidays includes the following: 

  • Use humor to diffuse situations when tensions are high and it seems that a fight is imminent.
  • Be willing to work with the other spouse to swap days and allow your child to attend important holiday events.
  • Be quick to forgive when things do not go as planned or when one parent forgets something.
  • Ask the other parent if he or she would like to attend an event together to provide support for the child. 

Above all, being willing to compromise and work together can provide many benefits for children. It can also mean you will be able to avoid stressful disputes that may complicate the holiday season.

Protecting your kids and your parental rights

If you are facing disputes that you believe are serious or could compromise your parental rights, you will find it helpful to discuss your concerns with an experienced North Dakota family law attorney. However, when it comes to small issues, such as attending holiday events, it may be possible to reach a satisfactory resolution to your concern simply by working with the other parent. 

The holidays can be tough, but it is possible for two co-parents to set the needs of their children above all else and avoid contentious disputes.

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Commandments of Family Law

  1. The only truth your children need to know is that you both love them unconditionally, and that this isn't their fault.
  2. Take the high road — everyone wins when you do what's best for your kids.
  3. Negotiate but don't capitulate — if you are being pushed toward something detrimental for your children, stand your ground.
  4. You can only control yourself and how you respond. Don't engage.
  5. Do set up rules and responsibilities. Kids feel better when routine is continued.
  6. You are still their parent — don't be afraid to be one.
  7. Disneyland is in California, not in your home. Don't set up unreasonable expectations.
  8. It is not their job to take care of you. Repeat that to them. Often.
  9. Yelling is for sports — not court. Good lawyers strongly advocate without being disrespectful to opposing parties.
  10. Fair is a place you go to get cheese curds. Aside from that, nothing in life is fair.

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