Fittingly, I write this on the day that it is rumoured that Peter Andre won’t see his children this Christmas. The reason for this is because of the increased animosity between him and Katie Price. Who made the decision and is it the right decision for his children or them? Should he be there for his children no matter what? These questions must get asked again and again by those going through a divorce or separation each and every Christmas. Apologies in advance if I sound like a grumpy old divorce lawyer.
Children of divorced or separated parents normally want their parents back together even when they have remarried and have new lives. The fact that it’s Christmas seems to add to this desire even more. I blame the Christmas TV movies that start in October. They want the happy ever after even if their parents have not stopped arguing since the divorce. For Children who see their parents arguing it can be not only upsetting but damaging to them in the long term. Children tend to spend their life copying the actions of the people they live with or are close to, even parents who argue. If they repeatedly see their parents arguing they are likely to think that this is normal and and could go on to repeat these actions in their future relationships. In effect what they learn is “this is how you behave in a relationship and then you get divorced!
I often wonder when I am dealing with newly divorced or separated parents if I am being unreasonable. I think, surely they shoud be able to hide or put aside their feelings for at least a few hours? How difficult is it to present a united family front for the sake of the children for one day of the year? If this were possible then both parents would be able to be with their children for Christmas and in my mind this would be the best possible Christmas present for most children.
The best way to survive Christmas is to have a plan. Explain to your ex-partner that you aren’t going to discuss any controversial matters related to the divorce. Put all the discussions about finances aside for this one day. Bite your tongue if your ex-partner makes any comments that you feel are aimed at you. Remember, Christmas is about children, put there needs and desires first.
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