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Divorce & The Holidays


There is no pause button in life. We do not have the luxury of pausing the world around us in order to enjoy a festive time of the year. This is a sad reality for people trying to navigate a shaky relationship as Christmas approaches. Being at parties surrounded by happy couples and enduring endless advertising about the joys of the season is enough to send a struggling relationship over the edge.

If you are considering a divorce during this holiday season you are not alone. According to a survey by Wevorce, 1 in 12 people were considering divorce or separation during the holidays as recently as 2013.

Read on for some helpful tips for navigating a divorce during the holidays.

1. Don’t Let Guilt Get The Best Of You

You are not obligated to feel guilty about the end of your marriage or feel bad about not feeling joy during the holiday season. You are a human being just like anyone else. If you are unhappy it is important to be honest with yourself.

2. Carefully Consider Your Next Steps

Telling your spouse you intend to initiate a divorce during the holidays may feel like the best way to lift the weight off of your shoulders, but you should consider whether the decision can wait. Rather than making an emotional decision now, it may be better to have a thoughtful discussion about how to proceed with your divorce after the holidays wrap up and the tree is put away.

If you absolutely must remove yourself from the relationship for your own wellbeing, consider moving out now to provide you with some space but don’t make the decision public until later.

3. Be Sensitive To Your Child’s Needs

If you and your spouse decide that a divorce is the best way to move forward, consider not announcing the divorce until after the holidays. Why? Because you could potentially ruin this time of year for your children forever. Things like Christmas trees, holiday lights, and snowman-shaped cookies could instantly bring them back to the gut-punch of finding out their parents are getting a divorce.

Once the stress of the holidays is in the past, you and your spouse will be better equipped to provide your children with the comfort and guidance they need during a difficult transition.