Whether or not a family is going through a divorce, the holidays can be
a stressful time. For families who have experienced loss and trauma, the
entire holiday season can be full of frustration and tension, rather than
the usual joy that their friends and neighbors experience. It can be hardest
for the children, some of whom may still be reeling from the divorce or
are in the midst of a confusing and chaotic time. Because much of the
focus during this time is family togetherness - festivities, eating, drinking,
and spending time together – it can make formerly fond memories
of a family that is no longer together very painful.
Overcoming Holiday Blues
Many families rely on tradition: for example, baking cookies for Santa
Claus on Christmas Eve. For some, it is a welcome, familiar comfort. However,
trying to replicate something that holds so much weight in a child’s
memory can be could be even more upsetting when it fails to live up to
Consider creating new traditions: taking a trip somewhere where you and
the children haven’t been. Begin a new activity that bonds the family
together that is also stress-free. Try not to dwell on residual, bitter
feelings. Though they may still be there, you do not want those negative
emotions to spiral out of control or affect your children’s new
Maintain a Support System
Do not be ashamed to look to others for support: friends, family, neighbors,
pastor, or others in your community. Money can be tight around the
holidays, particularly when you are going through or have been through a divorce.
You should not have to feel obligated to shower your children with lavish
gifts or throw large parties—keeping it simple will make the celebration
all the more meaningful as you build a new life.
See more about our Collin County and Denton County family lawyers at CokerLegal.