Holidays post-divorce can be difficult. I know this first-hand. After my divorce from my son’s father, my son spent most of the actual holidays with his father and the family members visiting from out-of-town. My son would spend the eve before or the day after with me, such as the Friday after Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve.
After college, my son married and he and his wife started their family. The holiday dynamic changed and was a bit awkward for a few years. Soon, they were hosting a couple holidays and I found myself dining with my ex-husband. We were civil to each other but it wasn’t holiday-ish, or so I felt at the time.
I remember realizing last year on Thanksgiving that it was the first Thanksgiving my son and I had spent together in 30 years. This was easier to do now that my son and his wife were hosting Thanksgiving at their house to include all four parents and their spouses. Now that the kids have a bigger house, they host all the holidays. 32 years after my son’s father and I divorced, we share holidays (and family events) together with our son and his family: Easter, Mother’s Day, Grandkids’ birthday party, Father’s Day, Light the Night Walk, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and the zoo walk the day after—not to mention all the recitals and athletic events, oh, and funerals.
I participate for the grandkids; when they were born, my ex- and I went from exes to family. Strange how that happens. I make the best of it, now. Holidays are no longer mine; they are for me to share with my son and his family, and that family includes his father.
As the Spring holidays and holy days approach, I wonder what that means to those of you who are either newly divorced and finding your way, or those of you who have been divorced for a while and found a way to heal and make the situation work for you. Tell us your story!
What traditions did you have that you will have to alter or eliminate now, post-divorce? Of those, what will you miss most?
What efforts to make the holidays special will you make that your former spouse used to make?
What more do you want to share about your holidays post-divorce?
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