As we all know, the summer holidays can be a stressful time of year for any parent. Childcare, work schedules and holiday plans are but a few of the things that parents must juggle during this time. As a co-parent, the summer holidays can be particularly challenging. However, there are some things that you can do to make this time less overwhelming.
Here are our 6 top tips to help you navigate the summer holidays with your co-parent:
It is never too early to start making arrangements! Planning ahead will help you feel more in control and will help to prevent you from becoming overwhelmed by the extended period of time that your children have off school.
Communication is key
Remember, it is likely that your co-parent will also have some ideas about what they want to do with the children over the holidays, so it is important to keep each other in the loop as to what your plans are. Try to work together to come up with a holiday schedule that works for everyone. This will help to avoid any last-minute disappointment or conflict over who gets to spend how much time with your children and where that time is spent.
Unfortunately, not everything always goes to plan. You may well have to make changes to your schedule due to unforeseen circumstances and so it is important to be flexible and open to compromise. Try to focus on what is best for your children and keep in mind that maintaining a good relationship with your co-parent will make things easier in the long run.
Be consistent with rules and expectations
It is inevitable that some of the normal routine will be difficult to maintain over the holidays. The children are likely to have more plans during the week and may want to stay out later on the weekends. However, discussing bedtimes/wake up times, screen time, curfews etc. with your co-parent will help to provide your children with some form of routine and consistency between both households. This will ultimately make transitions easier and will give the children some stability.
Arrange your expenses
The summer holidays can be expensive. If you can, discuss with your co-parent which costs will be shared and which will be paid for separately and by who. This will help to prevent any unnecessary conflicts due to unexpected expenses arising. If possible, try to consider your finances in advance so that you can avoid causing any additional stress when the time comes.
If things become too difficult and you and your co-parent are struggling to make things work, don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family for support. If necessary, you can also seek professional help from a mediator or family law solicitor who can assist with childcare arrangements.
Remember, the summer holidays can be a stressful time for any parent so don’t put too much pressure on yourself to get everything right. Plans often change and mistakes can be made. There is no perfect way to do things – you and your co-parent just need to figure out what works best for you both, and your children.
For more advice about co-parenting through the summer and beyond, please contact one of the team at Baker Street on +44 (0)20 7034 4200 or visit our website at www.streathers.co.uk.