Halloween Timesharing

On behalf of Ronald H. Kauffman, P.A. posted in Timesharing/Visitation on Monday, October 27, 2014.

The screams this Halloween may have nothing to do with spirits. Sometimes they are the howls of frustration from divorce and separated parents fighting over Halloween timesharing. Children should have a fun night. How can you help?

Diane L. Danois, a Certified Family Law Mediator, Parenting Coordinator, and Co-Parenting and Divorce Coach offers a few tips:

Plan ahead. Communicate with the other parent about what the plans for Halloween are.

Review your Parenting Plan to see if there is a provision for Halloween. The Florida Supreme Court approved parenting plans include a holiday section which expressly discusses Halloween.

Are you and you Ex-spouse available to go trick or treating this year? Is there an opportunity to adjust the schedule? Whatever the final decision, don’t put the kids in the middle or leave it to the last minute.

Sharing Halloween can be fun. If you and your Ex live in different neighborhoods, try to make arrangements to have your children split the evening and trick or treat in both neighborhoods! The kids won’t say, “NO!” to double the candy!

It may be a little awkward to stroll around the neighborhood with your Ex and her new spouse, but think about the message you will send your children: We can put our issues aside for your benefit.

Alternatively, you can split the holiday into separate events. If your situation simply doesn’t allow for co-parenting, think about spending Mischief Night (October 30th) with one parent, and Halloween Night (October 31st) with the other.

You can also split up the Halloween preparation. Shop for costumes together, or carve pumpkins with one parent, and put up fake ghosts, goblins, spiders and other Halloween decorations and then trick-or-treat with the other.

Extend the celebration by sharing photographs of your kids in their costumes to all members of their family! Tweet, Instagram, or Facebook the fun.

If none of the above will really work for your circumstance, and you find yourself planning on a quiet night with the lights off, let your children know that you’re OK!

Don’t amp-up on your own loneliness, or let your children know that you will miss them so much while they’re out trick or treating and you’ll be all alone. Let your treat be giving them the knowledge and comfort that you’re having a fun evening, too!

Lastly, a word of advice: Don’t ask your children with whom or where they would like to spend Halloween. Your kids don’t need or want the pressures associated with having to choose. Assume that under different circumstances, your children would want to be together with both of their parents at the same time… and then work from there.

The article can be read here.