Holiday Burnout; 3 Tips to Cope and Keep Moving Forward.

Now that the Holiday’s hustle and bustle are behind us it is common for an emotional lull or brief bout of depression to set in.  These are the Christmas Blues and are real.  These are especially common in those persons dealing with the stress of family law litigation.

Christmas Blues happen for a number of reasons; all of the excitement and anticipation of the holidays have passed, financial problems that were ignored can no longer be (your personal financial cliff), the relatives you actually enjoy seeing have gone back home, and the “doldrums” of work and real life are back, in full force. There is even a medical term that can be applied; seasonal affective disorder.

There are a few mechanisms to cope with these Christmas Blues. I have previously blogged on dealing with stress by keeping a routine, adding some form of physical fitness and making your bed everyday, these continue to be applicable.  However, the Christmas Blues can be counteracted with a few other techniques, which also happen to be appropriate if you are dealing with or anticipate dealing with family law issues.

  • Get a financial check-up.  Meet with your financial advisor or CPA.  Hire one if you don’t have one.  You may think you don’t have a need or do not have enough assets to warrant it, however knowing what you have, where it goes and what to do with it helps regardless of your situation.
  • Get a medical check-up.  This is almost as unpopular as going to the dentist, but do it anyway.  Knowing what’s going on with your health is important and can head off future issues. I know you’re busy and feel fine.  Do it anyway.
  • Get a spiritual check-up.  Why do bad things happen to good people?  Why is their so much illness and tragedy in the world?  I do not have all of the answers, but these are common questions.  Being centered, be it through your church, other place of worship or out in the woods, helps you cope with life’s unanswered questions.

These are not earth shattering, though may be annoying or hard to schedule.  Do it anyway.  You will not regret it.

Matthew is a divorce attorney, food blogger, and Mississippian, none of which he apologizes for.  Follow the @

You may contact the Firm at (601) 850-8000 or

BowTieLawyer’s Top Rated Posts of 2012 (and a few of my favorites)

Below are the Top Rated posts for BowTieLawyer for 2012 and a few of my favorites.  Thank you for viewing this blog, posting comments and sharing.  I think this is a worthwhile blog and I enjoy doing it.

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I began on August 14, 2012, blogging about Family Law issues and whatever else I felt like.  I have had about 2,500 views, over 53 new blogs, viewers from 27 countries and numerous comments, likes and shares.  I am looking forward to continuing in 2013 and welcome your blog ideas or requests.  Leave a comment or send an email;

Also, please check out my Law Firm’s site at


And a few of my Favorites;

Thompson Law Firm, pllc     (601) 850-8000

Christmas Custody and Visitation.

In divorce situations the holidays, including Christmas, can be more difficult than any other time.  Christmas is a special time when everyone is supposed to get along and we celebrate family.  However, a divorce can certainly change that.

Most often divorced parties alternate the children during the holidays.  Usually the Christmas break is divided between the parents based upon the school calendar.  Additionally, the children usually spend part of Christmas Day with each parent.  The typical Custody/Visitation scheduled may look like this.

“In even-numbered years the Father shall have Thanksgiving from Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving through Thanksgiving weekend, ending Monday morning when he returns the child to school.

In even-numbered years the Mother shall have Christmas from the day school recesses for Christmas Break until Christmas Day at 2:00 p.m., and the Father shall have from 2:00 p.m. December 25 until January 1, at 12:00 noon.  The mother shall have from noon January 1, until school resumes, at which time the regular custody/visitation schedule shall resume.  In odd-numbered years this schedule shall be reversed so that the father shall have from the time school recesses for Christmas Break until Christmas Day at 2:00 p.m., and the Mother shall have from 2:00 p.m. December 25 until January 1, at 12:00 noon, with the Father having from noon January 1, until school resumes.”

This is just an example, though is fairly typical.  Having said that, the Court will likely approve any arrangement the parties can mutually agree upon.  There are good reasons to agree to an alternative plan.  Sometimes family tradition is to celebrate Christmas Eve and it may make more sense and be easier for the children if that parent continued with that tradition.  Sometimes the parties live so far apart that the travel on Christmas Day is unreasonable.  Pay attention to this.  It may make more sense and be easier for everyone involved for the exchange to be the 26th.  One judge, no longer on the bench, always awarded the custodial parent Christmas Eve and day.  His sentiment was the children needed to be “home” for Christmas.  The other parent did receive a good amount of time over the holidays and just adapted with “new” traditions.

As parents your job is to make the holiday as normal as possible.  It is okay to start new traditions, but don’t do so at the expense of your child’s emotional well-being.  Oh, and don’t agree to the alternating Christmas language in your papers based upon the other parent telling you, “don’t worry about it, you can always have Christmas morning ‘irregardless’ of the papers.”  First of all ‘irregardless’ is a non-standard word that will have the grammar police en route and secondly if it’s not in your papers, it’s not going to happen.

Remember this, Christmas can be whenever you and your child have the chance to be together.

Thompson Law Firm, pllc     (601) 850-8000maroon bow

Divorce, Child Custody & Child Support, Alimony, Contempt, Modification, Youth Court, TPR/ Adoption and Appeals.

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