Perhaps the hardest time to juggle a blended family is during the holidays. How should time be split? How do you even begin to decide? Here, our Blended Life author gives some tips on planning ahead for an excellent holiday season.
Never underestimate the power of traditions. Traditions play a crucial role in determining family identity. It is critical to make these changes of tradition as smooth as possible. Planning well can avoid the painful lack of security and loss of identity within blended families.
Sitting down with your co-parent and any stepparents well ahead of time is a must. Your motivation has to be the well-being of your children and the overall health of your families. Flexibility and sacrifice are central to creating an effective plan. Do what you can and accept what you can’t. Don’t be afraid to re-evaluate and make changes in the best interest of the kids.
- Define your holidays. What do you consider to be a holiday? The big ones are usually obvious (Thanksgiving, Christmas), but sometimes smaller ones can carry great significance, such as having a family reunion scheduled around a certain holiday.
- Reconsider holiday visitation schedules. Just because there is legal documentation establishing a plan does not mean it can’t be revised or altered if it is in the best interest of all parties. When parents remarry, that brings additional grandparents and potential traveling into the picture; be thoughtful of what all parties need and be flexible.
- Kids are first. As you strive for consensus, remember to put the welfare of the children at the forefront of the process.
How do you decide on holiday plans with your blended family?