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To Sam


if my parents are divorced then tagt means i have to spend holidays switched each year but if i dont want to spend christmas with my dad this year and really spedn christams with my mom even though this year is not the year she gets to have me for christmas then how do I tell my dad i really want to go with my mom for christmas instead of my dad, even though its his turn to have me for christmas

Ask Sam


Hi there,

Telling one parent you would rather spend time with the other can be hard to do and especially so when it relates to special events or times like Christmas – it is good to see you are thinking about this and the impact it may have, well ahead of the actual event.

Having tricky conversations can be difficult, particularly when it is with those close to us but there are a few things you can do to make it easier for you.  Choosing the right time and place to have the conversation is important. So is finding somewhere quiet or private to talk, away from distractions that might be related to work or family. This can help to set the scene and ensure the time and space for the conversation are protected.

Telling your dad this is your decision and how much you like spending time with him, could help too, as well as explaining why you would prefer to spend the time this year with mum.  Honesty is important and only you can know what it may be like for your dad to hear that but remember to focus on why this is important to you.

It is important to give your dad time to share his thoughts and feelings too and to think about a possible alternative that will work for everyone. It might be that you just want to make this change this year and perhaps next year he could have a little more time with you, for example.

Give your dad time to accept and understand what you are saying and your reasons and remind him that you are trying to find a solution to a problem you have. One further thing you could do is to talk to the counsellors at Childline, they could help to plan your conversation, including what you might say and help you to practice it.

Whatever you decide to do there is always support for you.

Take care,


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