Days like kindergarten or high school graduation, birthdays and other special events are stressful for all parents. When you are divorced from your child’s other parent, they are even more troublesome. It is possible that you and your child can enjoy this day with the other parent being present. In fact, this is usually the way that children enjoy special days because they can spend time with both parents.
Being around your ex for these events isn’t always easy. It will take a joint effort for everyone to get along, but this is usually worth every minute of it when you realize just how happy you have made your children. Of course, if there isn’t any way that you and your ex can get along for one celebration, it might be best to have two separate celebrations.
If you do opt to have a joint celebration, make the rules clear from start. Let anyone know who is coming that this celebration is for the child and not a time to hash out differences. You will have to be firm on this point.
You might find that it is actually easier to deal with your ex at big events instead of smaller events. More intimate events, such as birthday parties at a parent’s home, might have more tension. Try to plan for this if you know that it is coming. Sometimes, heading into one of these events with a plan and a good attitude might help to make it easier.
Another thing that you can do is make sure that specific situations that might cause issues are covered in the child custody order. If the current order isn’t working, you can always find out if your circumstances qualify for a modification.
Source: Our Family Wizard, “Allowing Celebration to Bridge Two Houses,” accessed Jan. 25, 2018