It seems there’s a new mind-set of the modern-day mothers. Though you may view your offspring as God’s gift, be careful when it comes to gift-giving. You may or may not have your children this Christmas as decreed in your custody order.
If you do have them, don’t try and out-gift your ex. Or worse, lead your children to believe it’s his fault that you were unable to give them what they deserve. Your children should never feel they have to choose sides and should always feel loved. Holidays have a way of branding themselves into our memories long after they have passed. If they are old enough enlist your children in fun ways to make merry. They realize their situation and just want both parents to be happy together or not.
If you engage in the game of who can give them the most, you and your ex-husband will succeed in raising entitlement tikes. Children who are given all their little hearts desire will never experience the joy of giving rather than receiving. A sense of entitlement will be cemented in their brains and the idea of having to earn what they want will be as foreign to them as Iceland.
Unless yours is one of the few with a trust fund, trust me when I tell you that when it’s time to leave the manger, little Jesus and Sarah will have no motivation to do so. If the meek indeed shall inherit the earth, after the children open their expensive gifts, take them down to your local family shelter bearing gifts for those less fortunate. Insight is a gift that is truly priceless.
If you’re on good terms with your ex, you might even invite him over to share in the gift-giving and a little holiday cheer. Don’t do it for you – do it for the family. Everybody wins. If the very sight of him makes your stomach ache toast him anyway.
For the childless divorcee, yearning to buy toys with no tots, nieces or nephews, you too can make a child’s day by being a part of your community and helping those in need. Don’t forget the child in you while you’re at it. Go ice skating, build a snow woman or just watch Frosty the Snowman on TV. If you live in a snow-less climate, find an ice skating rink or gather some friends and enjoy a snow day or weekend in the mountains. Whatever you do – make the holiday about someone or something other than you.