Press Release

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For immediate release - December 21, 2006

For more information or to book an interview, please contact:
    Jane Nahirny, Editorial Director:
    Dan Couvrette, Publisher:

Top Ten Holiday Tips for Divorced Parents

Toronto, ON -- Feeling a little stressed? You're not alone, says Dan Couvrette, Publisher and CEO of Divorce Magazine and "We're all feeling the pressures of the season, with the parties to attend, gifts to buy, and cards to send." But if you're divorced, this time of year can be particularly challenging. "Holidays tend to accentuate the fact that things are no longer as they once were," Couvrette explains. "That's why it's important to take steps now to prepare for happier holidays for you and your family."

With that objective in mind, and to help mark our 10th anniversary, Divorce Magazine presents a Top Ten list of tips to help divorced couples with children cope with the holidays. This list was written by Los Angeles divorce attorney Stacy D. Phillips, a Certified Family Law Specialist, Divorce Magazine feature writer, and the author of the book, Divorce: It's All About Control: How to Win the Emotional, Psychological, and Legal Wars.

Here they are, Divorce Magazine’s Top Ten Tips for divorced parents with children:

10. Get counseling.

The holiday season is undoubtedly the most distressing time of the year for everyone associated with a broken family, especially the children. Prepare for it with a trip to your favorite therapist.

9. No "one-upsmanship."

Don’t try to "out-buy" the other parent with gifts, vacations, and lavish extravagances. The children can see through your veiled attempts to have you become the "favorite" parent.

8. Give a little bit.

Be flexible with child visitation and time share. The children are already torn with the going back and forth between you two. A tug of war over the holidays ruins the spirit for them.

7. Be inclusive.

Even if you don’t like your ex-spouse’s new significant other, he/she is still part of your child’s family. Giving gifts? It’s kinder to put everyone’s name on the present, not just the mother or father’s (unless the gift is a personal one).

6. Focus on others.

Give your children a holiday message. Have them help you gather a gift basket for the troops overseas, make a visit to an assisted living care center to provide some cheering up to the elderly, or bake some cookies for your kid’s homeroom class. No better way to say "goodwill to all." These acts of kindness tend to de-emphasize the divorce wars!

5. Surround yourself with good cheer.

Invite friends, family and others—especially those important to your children—over for fun, games, or a good home-cooked meal. Also, visit others who make you and the children feel loved, special, and cared for.

4. No bad-mouthing.

Even if your ex is late in returning the children, and even if she or he says bad things to you or about you in front the kids, don’t react. Wear the "white hat," always.

3. Lessons learned.

Be a good role model. Children will often emulate their parents’ behavior. If you demonstrate kindness and charity, so will they. Show them you refuse to start, or engage in, any divorce war during the holidays!

2. Peace on earth.

Remember what the holiday season signifies: peace and goodwill. Haven’t tried already to get along better with your ex? Let the yuletide season kick it off. Your children will consider this a real gift.

1. Look ahead.

The holidays are temporary; the typical nostalgia that accompanies it will wane. With the New Year just around the corner, concentrate on all the wonderful events you’ll enjoy this coming year with your children.

Other articles about coping with the holidays, Handling the Holidays and Two Homes for the Holidays.


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