Create A Holiday Plan With Your Child
Ohhhhhhh! The childish love of the holidays always returns every year! It is the best time of the year, right?
The holidays can be wonderful…and stressful trying to create and match the holiday grandeur we have created in our minds. TV commercials, songs, and movies make us think of the perfect holiday experience which is impossible to bring into existence for who has real elves, reindeer, and an encounter with Santa in one’s own living room?
So we strive for the most we can do with what funds we have, the time we have, and the resources we have.
As our children age, their perfect holiday experience changes. Little ones seem to go with the flow much more easily than teens who are no doubt thinking of their friends and any special romantic interests. Family isn’t enough to fulfill the complete holiday experience created in a teen’s mind. It’s time to have an open discussion and to create a holiday plan with your teen to avoid:
- hurt feelings
- emotional outbursts
- withdrawn behaviors
- a sense that something was missing after the holidays are over
Think back to your holiday experience when you were a middle schooler or a high schooler. Was there someone you wanted to spend time with, but didn’t due to family obligations? Were there friends you wished you could see?
While family is sooooo important to the whole holiday experience, it’s not the whole experience to a teen. Just as we adults have fun with friends, it is important for teens to do the same. A plan is needed. A discussion (or two) is needed. Safety is priority. Agreement is mandatory.
- what would you like to experience this holiday season?
- are there any places you’d like to go?
- are there any different foods you’d like to eat?
- are there friends you’d like to include in your holiday season?
- do you have a special someone you’d like to include? Get a gift for?
- what is your favorite part of our past holiday experiences?
On the other side of this topic is the request for more help with holiday preparations. How can your teen help more? Play an important role? Be more involved since he/she is older?
Gather a couple of mugs and some cocoa and have a good discussion about your teen’s vision for the upcoming holiday experiences. This is honoring your teen and will establish a pattern of openness to discuss other topics as well.