Every year when the holidays approach, I always start getting a lot of messages about the Holidays in the MasterPlan Divorce Recovery Program & Community.

Lots of conversation about dealing with Thanksgiving, Christmas and the other Winter Holidays during divorce.

Here’s this honest feeling:

“Just came back from trying to do some shopping. Christmas music everywhere, many couples, joyful atmosphere. I did not buy anything. I felt horrible. I had to come back home. So many things are being taken away from me by the man who I wanted to spend my life with. I feel soooo sad and lonely.”

Here’s some good advice from another RADiCAL Woman about Thanksgiving:

“If you’re going to be with them on Thanksgiving, just pour yourself into those precious moments with them, without him. It’ll be magic. Now, you have to plan for what to do when you go home by yourself. Figure out how to make that “pinch point” a little softer, like stopping at Walmart or a grocery store or something on the way home. Put on your favorite music, light some candles, turn on lots of lamps, take a bubble bath – just anything to take the sting out of coming home along. This too will get better, I promise. You’ll look forward to coming home when you’ve complete healed from this.”

Part of the the healing is being honest with our feelings and expressing them to someone else.  Sharing heartaches and solutions is one of the best parts of the MDRcommunity.  Especially at this time of year.  Our friends and family are doing their own holiday stuff, and sometimes we just feel so left out and alone.  But simply having a place to talk about it is a help, and there is great advice like the quick example above.  By all of us addressing the issues of Divorce and the Holidays, we make them easier to deal with and lets us know we aren’t alone and won’t feel like this forever!

Here’s another suggestion for making the holidays better:  

“Something else that helps during the Holiday season is getting involved in helping someone who will most likely be without any gifts this year. (I like to see how I can help at Safe Houses where women have had to go when they are being abused by a spouse. –  See photo above) Just giving to another woman who is struggling can really help them (and us). Call your local shelter and ask if any of the women are going through divorce and order someone a Holiday Edition of the Divorce Survival Kit (they are still at a reduced rate). Or just get gifts that make her feel like she is being pampered and cared for. Also, most Churches have an Angel Tree. I’ve been taking a name or two off of a tree every year for years, and I love those days when I go and try to pick out things for a kid or an adult that will make them feel loved during this season especially. I also like to put in encouraging little notes as well. I know the holidays are difficult, but reaching out and helping someone who is really struggling always makes us feel better, too. (One other thing is that if you have young children, grandchildren, neices and nephews or just neighborhood youngsters, it’s a great way to teach them the value of sharing what we have with those who need a hand up. Our church has a motto this year. Very simple: “Love Does.” Love is an action verb. There’s no better time than now to share love.”

This is also a time to get something helpful for yourself. Go to the MasterPlan Divorce Recovery Program & Community and see what’s in it.  It will make the holidays better for you and for all the people who care about you.

If you don’t do anything else for yourself this holiday season, if you haven’t already, join us in the MDRcommunity. We’d love to meet you.  We’re a group of strong, good, fun women who encourage each other and refuse to let this divorce destroy our joy whatever the season!