The British version of Huffington Post just featured an article by family lawyer Philippa Cunniff that points out something that applies in the U.S. as well — an uptick in initiating the divorce process immediately after the Christmas holidays. According to her article, the reason for this is twofold:
Firstly, the stress and pressure of Christmas – for which family politics has a lot to answer – can be the straw which breaks the camel’s back in a marriage already showing signs of strain.
Secondly, few people want to separate immediately before the festive period, so many couples tough it out until the festive period is over.
She also calls for collaborative divorce as the best option, especially where children are concerned, for reasons that we continually advocate. It’s especially important during the holidays — it’s a time of heightened stress and heightened emotion. Parents can successfully create post-divorce holiday traditions that children will come to value, but the initial transition is challenging enough even without children associating the holidays as the time of year that Mommy and Daddy split up.
If you’ve just gotten through the holidays and can’t wait any longer to start your divorce proceedings, collaborative law not only offers the divorcing couple more control, privacy, and creativity in the divorce process, but it also is structured so a mental health professional can join the team at the outset and help the couple and their children navigate the emotions and stress that a divorce brings.