Both Father’s Day and Mother’s Day present a difficult issue for a divorced couple. Children may have before relied on the other parent being around and assisting in planning. They may now be uncertain and confused about what the day now signifies. It’s up to you both to ensure, for the children’s sake, that you have an idea of how the day will pan out before it happens.
If the father is still part of the children’s lives, it’s important they have the opportunity to see and celebrate with him on Father’s Day. Regardless of issues that arose during the divorce process. In theory a day for the father is equally about the children, and ensure you support their wishes. This may involve moving around the days that the father is due to see the children. Showing them that you still have mutual respect for each other’s roles in their lives will make the process easier on them.
Starting a dialogue with your ex-partner early can help you avoid a stressful and emotional rush just before the day. Negotiate times for picking up and dropping off will allow them and the father to plan their day together. The children will appreciate having time with their father on the day. Particularly when talking with their friends after the fact.
Some children may want their mother to be a part of the day. One method of deflecting this is to help them come up with new traditions. This could involve helping them find somewhere to go for brunch with him rather than make their dad breakfast in bed. Although Sometimes difficult, helping the children pick out a card and gift can help with the transition into the new relationship dynamic with their parents. Also important the encouragement given to create special moments with their father that can be more lasting than a simple card.
While these days may be difficult, the most important factor is your children’s wellbeing. Negotiations may be tough, being fair to your ex-partner will make it more likely they do the same for you in similar situations. An amicable relationship will not just help the kids, it will also make your life easier in the long term.
Carol Sullivan, Divorce Negotiator
This article was published in The Sun