How to Cope with Your First Thanksgiving After Divorce

Life presents many challenges after a divorce, especially during the holidays. You will likely exchange time-honored traditions for new ones and, depending on your holiday visitation schedule, your children might not even sit at the dinner table with you this Thanksgiving. However, this does not mean you cannot embrace the holiday spirit. You can always find something to be thankful for.

Celebrating Thanksgiving in the Aftermath of a Split

Although Thanksgiving is very much a family-centric holiday for many, this day is actually about gratitude. Instead of focusing on who you are having dinner with, think of all you have to be thankful for. In recent years, Friendsgiving became a popular concept, so consider reaching out to friends and celebrate with them if your children cannot be with you this year.

If your children are with you this Thanksgiving, create your own holiday traditions instead of trying too hard to recreate traditions of the past. Otherwise, you might stir up some unhappy emotions. Remember, this is a difficult time for everyone in your family and you are all trying your best to navigate the changes.

Here are some additional tips for you to consider:

  • Validate your children’s feelings: Your children are probably still coping with the end of your marriage. It is perfectly natural for them to feel sad! You do not have to force a positive spin on the situation and, in fact, doing so might make them feel misunderstood. Validate their feelings and help them move forward with the healing process.
  • Maintain some continuity: Many of your Thanksgiving traditions will change. However, if possible, try to hang onto some of them. For example, if your spouse always made pumpkin pie for dessert and your children looked forward to it, hold onto this tradition. A pie might not seem meaningful to you, but might mean everything to your children.
  • Work together: No matter who has the children for Thanksgiving, try to be cooperative with one another and remember that you are a team when it comes to your kids. If your children miss their other parent, let them send a text or make a quick phone call. These small acts of goodwill can help facilitate a cooperative and healthy co-parenting relationship.
  • Relax: Thanksgiving generally marks the start of the most overwhelming time of year, so if you have time for yourself, take advantage of it by taking time to relax and breathe. The better you care for yourself, the easier it will be to care for others, including your children.

Schedule a Consultation with One of Our Family Law Attorneys

The holidays are a challenging time of year for almost anyone to navigate, but it is often especially difficult for divorced parents. At Smith Law Offices, LLC, our team understands that not every issue you encounter can be solved without legal assistance, which is why we are committed to providing the legal advice and guidance you need during this difficult time. You can rely on our team to help you achieve your goals.

Contact our law office today at (636) 400-1177 to set up an initial consultation with one of our skilled family law attorneys.

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