The holidays can be a hectic time, as Florida families juggle a busy schedule with the many other demands of the season. It is often impossible to accommodate everyone’s wishes, and a great deal of compromise is required to make the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Years go smoothly. For families that have been divided by divorce, factoring a child custody agreement into the mix can make the holidays unpleasant for all involved.

For parents who are in this position, one of the most important aspects of avoiding strife is to understand the provisions outlined within the existing child custody agreement. Many disputes arise over simple misunderstandings about the schedule and which party is entitled to which dates on the calendar. It may also be helpful to print out a schedule and share it with the other parent.

When discussing the schedule, parents who are able to approach the matter in a spirit of cooperation are more likely to reach a mutually agreeable resolution to any conflicts that may arise. If the other parent wants to trade certain dates to accommodate a visit from residents from out-of-town, try to accommodate that need if possible. In return, the other parent will likely be more amenable to requests made on your end.

While the holidays can be a stressful time for divorced parents, it is possible to move through the season in a manner that preserves the spirit of the holidays. Florida parents should try to place the needs of their children above their own desires, and focus on working together to make sure that children have a positive experience regardless of any child custody limitations. These weeks will pass by in a flash, but the memories that children make during this special time of year can last a lifetime.

Source: Huffington Post, 5 Ways to Protect Children During Divorce, Deborah Anderson Bialis, Nov. 25, 2013