• Separation

How to navigate the festive season if you’re newly separated

Umbrella Family LawNovember 30, 2023

How to navigate the festive season if you’re newly separated

The holiday season is often portrayed as a time of joy, celebration, and togetherness. However, for those who are initiating separation, or recently separated, this time of year can be particularly challenging. Coping with the emotional strain of separation while trying to navigate the festivities can feel overwhelming. In this blog, we’ll explore the importance of self-care during the Christmas and New Year period, offering guidance on how to prioritise your well-being and find moments of peace amidst the turmoil.

Acknowledge Your Feelings:

Separation can bring a mix of emotions, especially during the holiday season. It’s crucial to acknowledge and accept these feelings rather than suppressing them. Allow yourself the space to grieve, reflect, and understand that it’s okay not to be okay. Embracing your emotions is a crucial step in the self-care journey.

Create Boundaries:

Setting boundaries is essential during separation, and this becomes even more crucial during the holidays. Clearly communicate with your ex-partner about expectations, especially when it comes to shared responsibilities or family gatherings. Establishing boundaries helps reduce stress and allows you to focus on your well-being.

Embrace New Traditions:

The holidays might not look the same after a separation, and that’s okay. Embrace the opportunity to create new traditions that cater to your personal needs and bring you joy, in addition to creating new traditions for your children, if you have them (see our blog about family Christmas traditions for inspiration). Whether it’s a solo movie night, a day of pampering, or a weekend getaway, find activities that resonate with you and help redefine this festive season on your terms.

Connect with Support Systems:

Don’t underestimate the power of your support system during challenging times. Reach out to friends, family, or a counsellor who can provide a listening ear and emotional support. Sharing your feelings can be cathartic, and you may find solace in knowing that you’re not alone in your experiences.  We at Umbrella Family Law can provide you with names of colleagues we know and trust if you like.

Practice Self-Compassion:

The holidays can intensify feelings of loneliness and self-doubt. During this time, it’s crucial to practice self-compassion. Treat yourself with kindness, understanding that you are navigating a challenging period. Engage in activities that bring you comfort and joy, whether it’s reading a book, taking a walk, or indulging in your favourite treat.

Prioritise Self-Care Rituals:

Make a conscious effort to prioritise “self-care”, whatever that may mean for you. Establish a routine that includes activities promoting physical, emotional, and mental well-being. This could involve regular exercise, mindfulness practices, or simply dedicating time to hobbies you enjoy. Taking care of yourself is not selfish; it’s a necessary investment in your overall health.

Reflect and Set Intentions:

As the year draws to a close, take some time to reflect on your journey and set intentions for the upcoming year. Focus on personal growth, resilience, and creating a positive outlook for the future. Setting realistic and achievable goals can provide a sense of purpose and direction, fostering hope for what lies ahead.

Navigating the holidays during separation can be challenging, but by prioritising self-care, setting boundaries, and embracing new traditions, you can find moments of peace and resilience. Remember, it’s okay to prioritise your well-being and create a holiday season that aligns with your needs and values.


We’re here to help. Contact us today to discuss your situation and how we can assist you.

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