Whether it is your first Father’s Day as a single parent or your tenth, being away from your children on a special day is tough.
For everyone, it will certainly be the first Father’s Day in lockdown. And for those fathers separated from their children and for others, a limit on the type of activities people can do, this year is even more challenging.
One of the key issues faced is if Father’s Day is not on your weekend with the kids. In this situation, who the kids spend the day with very much depends on how amicable you are.
Hopefully, in most cases, flexibility and respect will be in place and the kids will spend the day with their Dad.
However, we know this is not always possible so the five tips below will help you manage Father’s Day without the kids, the best you can.
If Father’s Day does not fall on your weekend, then some pre-planning will help. Talk to your ex-partner months in advance to see if weekends/days can be swapped so you can be together. And ensure that you do the same for Mother’s Day.
Communicate in a different way
If seeing the children is simply not possible then look at other ways to communicate.
Agree a good time with your ex-partner, calling during screen time or lunch is never good, and call them for a video chat (we are all much more used to them now).
Depending on the age, why not read a bedtime story? Or have a Netflix party?
Do something different with your day
If you cannot see them then do something with your day. Get friends together for who Father’s Day is difficult and have a video call or a social distance walk. You will miss your kids and it will not be the best of days, but you can control it not being the worse.
Pick a different day
Father’s Day is just a date. So move it. Plan something for a day when you do have the kids and organise something for you all to do something together.
Stowe top tip: Stay off social media
Our number one tip is to AVOID social media. Nothing worse than scrolling through hours of #blessed posts about father’s celebrating with their kids.
Put your phone down and disconnect for the day. Instead, focus your attention on having the best day possible and creating a special day for you and your children later.
And remember, being a father is a lifetime job so do not let 24 hours overshadow all the rest of your good times together.
Get in touch
If you are struggling to deal with Father’s Day with the kids after a divorce or separation, the following websites have some useful tools and advice.
Men’s Advice Line
This article was published at an earlier date and has since been updated.