Holidays and Child Custody

Divorced parents may encounter problems during Christmas and other holiday seasons with their children that married couples do not face. One of the best times of the year for most people, can be the worst times for a divorced parent. Who gets the children for Christmas Eve? Christmas morning? Hanukkah is celebrated for 8 days - how much of that time will you have access to your children? The loneliest night of the year may be the one where your child is celebrating with family, only that family no longer includes you.

To have a successful custody arrangement with successful holiday and birthday visitations, you need a plan of action. Don't leave legal agreements to the last minute. To make sure that the holidays go smoothly and as planned, you need to have a good child custody agreement firmly in place, with both parents knowing ahead of time what is expected, and following the directive with the best interest of the child as the goal.

If this holiday season you will not be seeing your children, or having the time that you feel you should have with them, make yourself a promise that next year will be different. Make a New Year's resolution that you will begin the process to have next year's holiday season more like the one of your dreams. Don't be spending next year alone and depressed because your children can't be with you. Plan now to have a new custody agreement in place.

Remember that a judge will rule based on what is best for the children. Make sure you present your case calmly and without bad-mouthing the other parent. It may not be best for the children to split up the day going between two homes. Consider alternating years with each parent. The year it's not your turn, have a big celebration a week before or after, don't get hung up on the actual day. You can still have a wonderful and meaningful holiday together, just with flexibility on the date. Include all of your traditions, foods, and gift giving just as you normally would. Give your children a real gift, that of peace in their own family. Put yourself in your kids' shoes for awhile. It can't be comfortable to have parents fighting over what should be a fun and joyous time of the year.

If you are interested in making next year better than this one, perhaps you need to re-visit your custody agreement. At the Law Offices of Hollie A. Lemkin, we deliver the kind of persistent advocacy that is necessary to prevail in these matters. At our family law practice we focus on all of your child custody needs, and provide aggressive legal representation whether in negotiations, mediation or court. Our goal is an arrangement that is best for both you and your child. Contact our Orange County office for effective legal help with your custody case. Call 949-734-4788 to schedule an appointment today. Next year really can be different.