Margaret Gettle Washburn, P.C.
(770) 676-1191
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Holidays, children and divorce

When Georgia couples get a divorce, the holidays can be particularly hard if there are young children involved. Parents should try to focus on their children and family during this time to ease the transition for everyone. It might be hard for children to move back and forth between homes during the holidays. Even though they may know that both their parents still love them, they still might struggle during this time.

In some cases, parents might be spending the holidays without their children, and if this is the case, they may want to visit family or friends for support. Parents who do have their children for all or part of the holidays should resist any temptation to punish the ex by refusing to be flexible about holiday arrangements. This ultimately only harms the children.

Parents should not try to overcompensate for the divorce by spending too much money on gifts for the children. It is better to stay within budget and focus on time spent together. Parents can also focus on creating new holiday traditions. The first few years after the end of a marriage may be difficult, but parents may find over time that things get easier.

Parents may want to try to negotiate an agreement on child custody and visitation that includes plans for the holidays, or the matter might be arranged more informally. They could be included in the parenting agreement that parents put together with the help of their respective lawyers that can also cover issues as disparate as who is responsible for driving children to extracurricular activities, when bedtimes happen and when children will meet a parent's new partner. Another option is for the case to go to court where a judge may include a decision about holidays along with a plan for child custody and visitation. However, parents might have less control over the outcome in litigation.

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Margaret Gettle Washburn, P.C.
4799 Sugarloaf Pkwy
Building J
Lawrenceville, GA 30044

Phone: 770-676-1191
Fax: 770-963-2828
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