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The downsides of a post-divorce family vacation

Have you read the stories about celebrity couples going on vacation together after they get divorced? Maybe you think it sounds like an excellent idea. You and your ex had always talked about taking the kids to Europe for a few months over the summer. Why not do it together? Then you don't have to fight over custody time, you both get to stay involved, and you can make some great memories that the children will cherish.

That is possible, and some couples have found success with this idea. However, there are also some downsides that you need to consider.

For one thing, you need to make sure you know where you both stand and set boundaries. Did you ask for the divorce? Is your ex hoping that you will get back together? Experts warn that this is fairly common, so a joint vacation could send the wrong signals.

Even if your ex knows the marriage is really over, what about the kids? If they want their parents to get together again, a vacation may lead them on. This can make it harder for them to accept the way life is now and adjust to it.

Perhaps the biggest issue is that you can fall back into the same patterns and roles you had before the divorce. This can give rise to the same old tensions and conflicts. If you were frustrated that your ex didn't help out enough with the kids when you were married, do you really want to deal with that same stress on vacation?

No matter what you decide to do, if you consider unique and complex custody arrangements, make sure you fully understand your legal rights.

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