The summer holidays are here, and this is the time that many parents get to see a bit more of their kids and do fun stuff like day trips and going on holiday. But when the couple is separated or divorced, things can quickly become more complex and disputes can arise. Trying to be amicable about the whole process is not only best for you both but best for the kids too. Here are some tips to help you out.
For some couples, when they are going through the divorce forms, one of the things they handle at this point is - what happens to the kids? It can also be part of a separation agreement – who the kids live with and what percentage of time they spend with the other parent. It can be an excellent way to get a quick divorce because the children are usually one of the big points of contention.
However, the holidays, and arrangements around them, don’t always feature at this stage – people tend to focus on the big picture, not the smaller events. That’s why planning to deal with the issues around the holidays can be a good move.
A parenting plan is one route to handling this. When you get help with divorce, it will be clearly outlined when you will each spend time with the children during the holidays. It means each parent knows precisely when the children will be with them and when they will be with the other parent.
Fix Your Mindset
If you don’t have a parenting plan to lay out what happens in the holidays or you want to contest it, then you need to get your mindset right. Are you ready to compromise with your former partner to do what’s best for the kids? Or are you using them as pawns in your battle with each other to score points and hurt the other person? You need to be brutally honest about your motives and mindset.
So, before you start the conversation, make sure you are clear in your mind why you need to have it. Make sure you want to make the holidays the best possible time for the kids and to ensure both of you can make arrangements.
The other big problem that occurs is when one parent wants to take the children away, often abroad, and the other isn’t happy about it. You should always tell the other parent where you are going, how long you will be away, where you are staying and give emergency contact information. It helps them feel reassured knowing where the kids are. You might also want to arrange contact times and days, so the other parent can speak to the kids but isn’t constantly ringing and spoiling the holiday because they are worried.
What if you are worried about the other parent taking the child and not returning? Or you think the other parent is deliberately stopping the holiday for no reason? A specific issue order is something the courts can issue that either allows or prevents the holiday from happening. Most of the time, they will let a parent take a child on holiday, but there are a couple of
reasons they might stop it such as if the place visited is where one parent's family resides, and there’s a concern they might not return.
Aim for a Great Summer Holiday
When you step back, holidays are nearly always a good thing for kids. That’s why it is beneficial for both parents to come to some agreement and to make sure the children have a great summer holiday. And if you can’t settle on an approach, don’t be afraid to get help from a neutral third party to get there.