Christmas without the Kids

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Dec 2006

For the first time in my entire life, I'm facing the holidays without my kids. They are spending both Christmas and New Year's out of town or with their other parent. My kids are close to the empty nest age (being older teens) but I was not quite prepared for this. I'm new in town and wondering if anyone knows of good ideas for when the other parent has the kids on a holiday that is special to you
Non-custodial and lonely for holidays

I feel your pain, literally. My son is going out of town with his Dad for the holidays. So I am having an open house for friends right at the holiday, Dec. 24. I will decorate, have special hoiday food, and have a party. Christmas Eve seems to work OK for many, since American Christians (or solistice celebrators or what have you) seem to celebrate on Christmas Day and often have time on Christmas Eve. If you make it an open house it's self-serve, no sit down, no fixed time for arrivals, etc. I would avoid an evening alone at all costs. And/or perhaps you are blessed with non-Christian friends who don't celebrate Christmas and you could ask them to join you for a holiday meal and/or hike. Brunch is nice.

Going out of town to visit friends or family right at or after the holiday also seems a good option. If not, treating yourself to a night of theater with a friend (or music...). Anyway, treat yourself well!
wishing you contentment

Hop on the boat. I am a divorced mom in the same situation. The ex and his new wife are taking the kids off to Tahoe to commune with her family until the 29th. Of course, I am also lonely and bummed. Most of my friends and my one other relative besides my kids are off traveling to their families for the holidays. Then there is the added sadness of not having a significant other to spend the holidays with. Maybe there are more of us out there and we should all meet for a hike or a potluck or something. Anyone else out there?

How about volunteering at a local soup kitchen, senior citizens home, or other charitable organization? Helping others would be a great way for you to realize that your kids aren't the only ones who need you. =)

My heart goes out to you because I know this is hard. I am married with kids now but before that, for a long time, I was a single gal and spent many an ''orphan'' Christmas. This is what I recommend: VOLUNTEER. Project Open Hand, Glide, St. Vincent de Paul could all use people to help with their holiday meals. Or, visit a nursing home where many people are forgotten on Christmas. Some Christmases I really relished the idea that I could get up and just have quiet time to myself. I would take an early morning's so peaceful in the city on Christmas morning. There might be a spa open. Go have a nice dinner somewhere. There are some places that are open. I'm sorry you are feeling lonely, but your kids will come back and things will be busy. Let them enjoy the holiday and look at this as an opportunity to have some time for YOU! Good luck and happy holidays. anon