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Washington parents typically spend a lot of time negotiating the terms of their co-parenting plans when they decide to divorce. Custody and parenting issues are top priorities. The court always has children’s best interests in mind when making decisions regarding these and other child-related topics.

With the 2019 holiday season underway, some parents may be struggling to resolve certain issues concerning parenting time, gift buying and other matters. Co-parents can keep stress to a minimum by incorporating certain strategies into their holiday plans. While some  divorced parents choose to spend holidays together for the sake of their children, there are also many kids who will travel back and forth between households.  If a parent knows ahead of time that his or her kids will be at the other parent’s house for a specific holiday, celebrations can be enjoyed early or after the official calendar date.

Parents can help their children cope with life changes prompted by divorce during the holidays by acknowledging the fact that their kids love both parents. A parent can help children choose and wrap a gift for the other parent or bake some cookies, etc., so they do not arrive at a co-parent’s house empty-handed for the holidays. Parents can agree to have kids touch base with the parent who is not present for a particular holiday, either by a phone call or a virtual visit app.

Custody and parenting agreements can (and should) include thoroughly written holiday plans. This is the easiest way to avoid confusion and disagreements because everything is agreed upon ahead of time and incorporated into the court order. If a legal problem arises that is causing contention or impediment to holiday joy, a concerned Washington parent can reach out for support by requesting a meeting with an experienced family law attorney.