Surviving Your Divorce in New Jersey During the Holidays

The holidays can be stressful enough even if you’re part of a blissful, intact family. But for those experiencing divorce in New Jersey or separation, the holiday season can feel impossible when you’re surrounded by others who may not understand what you’re going through. For families in New Jersey going through divorce with children involved, the holiday season stresses can be magnified. In an ideal world, most parents want their children to go through the divorce process with as little disruption to their lives as possible. One way to provide stability for your children is to plan ahead and resolve any disputes prior to the start of the holidays.

So, what else can you do for your family to get through the holidays? First, remember that different things work for different families, so be flexible and keep lines of communication open.

More Tips for Getting Through the Holidays During Your Divorce in New Jersey

Make New Family Traditions – Respect old traditions, but don’t be afraid to begin new ones with friends and family. Reassure your children that holiday celebrations will continue, but maybe in a different way. It’s OK to keep some things the same – children feel secure with routines, so make it a conversation and go with the flow.

Focus on Others –Consider volunteering to help those less fortunate than you…and get your mind off your own troubles. Studies show that volunteering increases self-confidence, combats depression and reduces stress and anxiety.

Socialize – Get out of hibernation and go out for some fun with friends. Staying active will help you into that happier state of mind. But don’t “drown your sorrows” with alcohol. Studies have shown that attempting to numb emotional distress with alcohol or drugs just makes the depression worse.

Exercise – Head to the gym or out for a wintery jog to lift your spirits. It’s no secret that exercise is a known antidote for depression and stress. Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress.

Confirm the Schedule – Decide in advance how the holidays will be divided and confirm it in writing. Remind your children that it is not their fault, reassure them that you will be okay while they are with the other parent and encourage them to enjoy their time there.

Be Realistic – Remember, the holidays aren’t about perfection. Focus on what’s really important to you and celebrate them. But know that some days will be harder than others, so prepare to feel some emotion and allow yourself to feel those feelings.

If you find yourself faced with divorce in New Jersey and cannot reach an agreement, talk to our professional and compassionate divorce attorneys at Villani & DeLuca P.C., who will advise you the most appropriate next steps to take through this difficult time. Getting through this year’s festivities may be tough; however you will emerge stronger and ready to take on 2015 in the New Year.