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All I want for Christmas is my ………..

 
 

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I imagine when you saw this article title, many of you thought the rest of this phrase would be “my two front teeth.” You may remember that fun Christmas song “All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth” from childhood. The lyrics talk about how people stop and stare at a little child missing his two front teeth. The child wishes he could say “Merry Christmas” and whistle.

For the child of divorce, there are a lot of parallels in this song, but it’s more like, “All I want for Christmas is my two parents kissing.

This year, many kids will feel self-conscious coming to church Christmas programs with only one parent. They will think people are looking at them. Many children of divorce wish they could say, “Merry Christmas,” but it just isn’t in them. They are too sad to wish others a merry or happy Christmas. Many are envious of other kids who are so joyful over the holidays.

Some children of divorce develop warm, fuzzy feelings and memories around the holidays. They envision and dream about their parents reuniting. It’s natural and normal for all of us to remember the happy memories. Kids are no different.

Here is what some of them imagine:

  • If I can get my parents to be kind to each other, then maybe Daddy will come back home.
  • If I can get my parents to kiss each other and love each other, then everyone will be happy.
  • If my parents celebrate Christmas together, it means they still love each other.
  • If they celebrate Christmas together, it means they still love me.
  • If I can just get Mom to bring me a Christmas present on Christmas Day, then maybe she will come inside the house, see the tree, and realize how much she really misses us.
  • If only Daddy would come over to our house on Christmas, he could see how well behaved I’ve become and how responsible I am now.

Perhaps if you realize what children are thinking, it might make it easier to understand their attitudes during the holiday. Some will be:

  • Grumpy
  • Grouchy
  • Sullen
  • Angry
  • Standoffish

This is especially true if it is their first Christmas in a single-parent home, and the divorce or separation is recent.

Encourage your children’s leaders to be gentle and extra kind to these children. They need to see the baby Jesus, and they need to understand the meaning behind the baby Jesus.

 

This article is updated and adapted from an article originally published on the Kids & Divorce blog on December 18, 2014.

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2 thoughts on “All I want for Christmas is my ………..

    • Cean, glad you and Jeff have reconciled. Thank you for commenting and praying that what you said will impact a couple and give them hope.

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