The holidays are coined as the most wonderful time of the year, but for someone that has been through a divorce it can be the absolute worst. From It’s a Wonderful Life on television to Mariah Carey’s Christmas album playing in every single store from Thanksgiving to Christmas, as a divorcee it can be force you to be overly emotional.
I’ll never forget my first holiday season, I was miserable; away from my family and to be honest depressed. I made a decision that I would never go through the holidays feeling that way ever again.
These 4 tips have truly saved my life.
- Connect with a group of people that truly love you
Whom you spend the holidays with can truly impact your emotions. If being around your personal family includes a lot of negativity, confusion and the typical fighting, then for this holiday season you may need to connect with a friend. I decided to buy thanksgiving for a family I knew that was in need, of whom were a joy to be around. They never brought up the divorce or made me feel like I was an outsider. I truly felt like they were my family and that I was loved.
- Avoid parties where your ex-spouse will be in attendance
The last thing you want to experience during the holidays is your spouse at a party full of people. I’m not encouraging you to avoid them and miss out on parties you absolutely love attending to hurt you, but to help you. During this season, your emotions will be all over the place due to the memories you have with your ex, the music, television shows etc. Also, depending on how your marriage ended, running into your ex-spouse may be a war waiting to happen. You don’t want to have someone else’s party ruined with a fight, or have to deal with surprisingly seeing your ex with a new love interest.
- Establish a plan with your ex for the kids
If you have children with your ex, try to establish a plan BEFORE the holidays begin to avoid negatively effecting your children. Its hard enough for adults to deal with divorce, the last thing you want to do is force your children to choose between you or your spouse for the holidays. My advice is work out an alternating plan, where you have them for Thanksgiving and they have them for Christmas or vice versus.
- HAVE FUN ON PURPOSE
The holidays are typically a happy time in our country. CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY! For the parties you are choosing to attend, ask how you can help the organizer so that you are involved with the planning. Also, buy a new outfit or for the fellas a new blazer or cologne and get fancy on purpose. If you drink alcohol, DON’T DRINK UNTIL YOU ARE DRUNK, thats just a catastrophe waiting to happen. Dance to the music, smile at strangers, play with the kids, eat the cookies and for THAT moment, BE IN THE MOMENT.
The holidays don’t have to be a death sentence just because you are now divorced, it can really be a therapeutic experience on your road to healing.