Co-Parenting on “Your Holiday” – Mother’s Day and Father’s Day 101

Written by Lindsey Houk on 05/14/2018

            I read a Facebook post this morning about the difficulty of being a divorced parent on a special holiday.  What I read might shock you.  My friend’s post stated that she woke up rather sad yesterday.  You see, she has this beautiful little boy and he was not with her yesterday. What? Why? It was Mother’s Day! She went on to explain that her sweet little boy also has a step-mother who is playing a very important and vital role in his life and that they share Mother’s Day by alternating years.  This was her year without him.  This certainly came as a shock to me. As an attorney in domestic law, I represent clients in situations where there can be a potential for parties to fight over holidays during negotiations or litigation involving custody.  I continued to read her post and, believe it or not, it only got better. She finished her post by writing that her ex-husband and his wife drove 30 minutes to her home and when she answered her door, there stood her little boy with a card and flowers.  This is one of the strongest examples I have ever read with regard to co-parenting.  This wonderful Mother agreed to share time with her son’s stepmother, understanding that doing so ensured that he understood the importance of her role in his life, in turn, she was acknowledged in such a loving way and spent a little time with her son on her “special day.” 

            Divorce is one life’s most difficult roads to walk.  What on earth could possibly make that road more difficult?  Only one thing, children.  You are now tasked with dividing your time with your children, the most important people in your life, with your former spouse.  This can be a challenging and very daunting task, especially when it comes to special holidays and the potential step-parent that may be added to the family dynamic. It is easy to become possessive of certain holidays and make certain that your child is with you, no questions asked.  But, aren’t there always questions to consider on this road?  In the world of domestic law, the answer is always “yes.” 

            In North Carolina, the Courts apply the “best interest of the child” standard when establishing custody, both legal and physical.  The attorneys and Judges work tirelessly to ensure that every scenario possible is addressed by the Orders governing custody, however, lawyers nor Judges can foresee every single scenario. The ability to rise to the occasion and co-parent can be one of the greatest rewards throughout your divorce, for you, your spouse and your children. 

            At the law offices of Waple & Houk, we will work to negotiate or litigate on behalf of you and your child.  While divorce and custody proceedings can be an extremely difficult process, we are here to advocate for you.