Halloween may not be considered a major holiday by the courts when parenting plans are crafted, but the holiday can be a very big deal to the average kid – and their parents. Ideally, you and your co-parent can put your differences aside for a bit and work together to pick out costumes, take the kids trick-or-treating and generally make the holiday special.
But, what if you can’t? If your emotional wounds are too new or there are other issues that make it impossible for you and your co-parent to amicably spend even a short time together, you need to come up with another plan. Here are some suggestions:
Split the schedule
Trick-or-treat times are usually location-specific, so if the time for Beggar’s Night in your neighborhood is different from the time in your co-parent’s neighborhood, you can each take the kids around in their costumes. That means your kids get twice the fun, and neither you nor your co-parent need to miss out on those precious memories.
Divide the activities
Another option is to simply divide up the Halloween fun. For example, you could take the kids shopping for their costumes and do pumpkin carving and “Spooky Movie Night” with them, while your co-parent handles the trick-or-treating. That way, you each get to create special memories that are independent of each other, and the kids still have a great time.
This could be the least-satisfying option, but you can always each take control of the festivities on alternate years. This is similar to trading Christmas or Easter each year, so if that’s already what you are doing, it could be the easiest solution.
Sometimes divorced parents discover that their parenting plans only looked good on paper, but they failed to account for some important situations or dates. When that happens, it may be time to see if modifications are possible.