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Christmas for Separated Families

Christmas this year will certainly be different in many respects.  For many this time of year is when plans are busily being made to spend time with extended family and friends.  None of us have ever experienced the festivities in the grip of a global pandemic, so it will be a testing time for many. 

For couples who are struggling with their relationship, the usual pressures of Christmas can prove a bit of a nightmare, adding further stress to an already difficult situation.  Families who are in the process of separating often find agreeing the arrangements for the children a challenge, with both parents inevitably able to spend less time with the children and having to reach difficult compromises.   For couples in these circumstances, emotions can run high and making decisions can prove extremely difficult.  Trying to agree arrangements that keep everyone happy can sometimes seem an impossible task.  All this, without the added stress of a global pandemic.

Of course it helps if already separated couples are able to agree the arrangements for the Christmas period well in advance, but we understand that this is not always possible.  A common arrangement, and one often supported by Judges, is for the separated parents to alternate Christmas Days with the children each year, but again, this may not work for every family.

It is always better when couples separate or divorce, for the children’s interests to be kept at the heart of the discussions, and for couples to avoid their own stress and anxiety impacting on the wellbeing of the children.  Avoiding Court proceedings can help to reduce the emotional upheaval such disputes can cause on separated families, especially over the festive period.

Susie Parsons, who is a Chartered Legal Executive, is just one of the specialist Family Lawyers in our Family Team who can advise about the arrangements for children, following divorce or separation.  Susie is a member of the National Association for Family Lawyers, Resolution, and is committed to a non-confrontational, non-adversarial approach, in the hope that couples can avoid the need for contentious Court proceedings where possible.

We also have Resolution accredited Family Lawyers in our team who can offer family mediation.  An impartial professional mediator can help to negotiate and work through solutions to the arrangements for the children, as well as any financial or child maintenance issues.

To find out more or to discuss your individual circumstances in more detail, contact us today on 0800 84 94 101 or email 

Appointments are available by telephone or via Zoom if preferred.