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Attorneys Vic Hill and Brad MacDonald

Divorce, visitation and the holidays: How will this work?

Often, coming to an agreement on visitation schedules for parents during a divorce settlement can be filled with tension and resentment. Holidays are particularly difficult to come to terms with, not just for parents but also for the kids involved. For many divorcing couples it is hard to let go of old grudges or memories of holidays together and move forward to create new traditions. For many Georgia families, coming to terms with and finding ways to make the holidays memorable and trying to find time for both parents to have equal visitation can help both the parents and the children adapt to their new family situation.

Planning a secure schedule ahead of time and communicating it to the children can help ease stress for both parents and kids. As many children thrive with a set routine, if they know when and where they are going, it can be easier for them to accept this new way of life. Asking for their input on the schedule may also be beneficial.

Trying to keep things positive and showing compassion to both the other parent and the children can foster a healthy and happy environment. Holidays are typically emotional and stressful in general. It may help to remind children that feeling a little more stressed this time of year can be normal but that both parents are there to help them through it.

Trying to remain positive and adjusting to this new way of life is hard, especially during the holidays. Having to keep it a positive experience for children involved can be even harder. When negotiating a parenting plan, it is a good time for Georgia parents to consider what they feel is best for both parties and the children involved. As long as parents come together and remember that the overall happiness and wellbeing of their kids is the most important thing, creating visitation schedules that work for everyone — even during the busy holiday season — will be much easier to accomplish.

Source:, Divorce Coach: How To Co-Parent During The Holiday Season, Terry Gaspard, Nov. 17, 2013