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Event Planning for the Divorced Parent

Planning and attending an event that is designed to honor your child is doubly difficult for a divorced parent when they know they’ll have to see their ex. However, it’s not impossible to pull off a great family function even while you’re not particularly fond of the company. There are some precautions you’ll need to take, though. 

1. Try to handle the planning together. 

When you are the only one coordinating the event, it can be difficult planning for the stiff dynamic that might exist between you and your ex. By the same token, it can make you seem like you’re running the show instead of being inclusive. The best thing you can do is reach out to your ex with enough advance time to bring them in on the planning or, at the very least, get their blessing for moving forward. They’ll appreciate that you asked, and it will go a long way in moving forward with a tone of respect. 

2. Discuss any ‘guests’ that you plan on including. 

Unfortunately, divorced people do not often go through their moving on processes at the same time, so it’s important to realize that one of you may be single while the other one isn’t. It’s not altogether necessary to bar your new guy or girl from attending the event, but you should discuss the matter with your ex first and be sure that you’ve allowed a respectable amount of time and healing to pass before even considering it. Again, “respect” is the word. 

3. Keep the behind-the-scenes stuff behind the scenes. 

Your child will probably feel tense enough — depending on age — knowing you’re both going to be there. That’s at least if your discontent for one another shows through. However, you shouldn’t have to avoid each other when it comes to a day or event that is supposed to be about the kid. If there are any issues that you have to work out re: planning and/or feelings and conflicts, take care of it behind the scenes. Leave your child out of it, and let them be a kid. 

What are some event planning tips that have helped you when coordinating events where you and your ex will be present? Share in the comments section. 

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