Believe it or not, the end of the school year is just around the corner. Summer vacation almost always brings big changes to Arkansas families, but the transition can be a lot harder for families who have just gone through a divorce.

During summer vacation, children will lose much of the structure they had during the school year. This may mean that the changes brought about by the divorce will really sink in once they have had time to relax and stop worrying about their studies.

Summer vacation also brings about big changes in schedules and added expenses as children participate in sports, camp and other activities.

If this is your first summer vacation post-divorce, consider the following tips to help the season go smoothly:

  • Stick to your parenting plan: As part of your divorce, you and your ex-spouse had to agree to a parenting plan. Stick to this plan whenever possible. If you have to deviate from the plan, be sure to discuss the issue with your spouse well ahead of time. You don’t want your kids to miss out on an activity they were excited about because you and your ex didn’t communicate.
  • Mind your budget: Most people find themselves needing to adapt to a new financial lifestyle after a divorce. This doesn’t mean your kids can’t have fun. With a little creativity, you can come up with dozens of low- or no-cost activities for kids of any age. In addition, most municipal parks and recreation departments provide lots of affordable programming for kids on summer vacation.
  • Provide some structure: Kids thrive on structure, and this is especially true in the aftermath of a divorce. Don’t just expect your kids to entertain themselves, even if they are older. In a time of stress, it can be very beneficial for kids to get out of the house and make new friends.

While nothing can totally take away the stress of a divorce, following these tips can help make summer vacation better for you and your kids.

Source: Huffington Post, “Tips For Divorced Parents To Have A Stress-Free Summer Vacation,” Michelle Rosen, April 19, 2013

Our law firm helps parents going through divorce and child custody cases in Arkansas. For more information, please visit our website.