Arranging summer holidays: what if we can’t agree? Our top tips for dealing with an impasse

Posted by Nick Arora on 13 May 2019 in categories: Blog , Family Mediation

In our second blog focusing on arranging summer holidays we’re talking about what happens if you can’t agree. This follows on from our blog last week talking about why you should start making arrangements now. Part of our reason for suggesting the importance of making arrangements early is so you can give yourself enough time to deal with a potential impasse if you’re not able to agree on arrangements.

If you find that you and your ex partner are stuck with regard to arrangements and you can’t seem to find a way forward then consider the following ideas:
1. Take a break from discussions to calm down and come back to things at a later point. You may each feel differently and find that a way forward presents itself.

2. Consider a compromise with a change for how you will manage things next year or next holiday. We find that offering a compromise can often bring about a spirit of reciprocity which means that whilst things might not have worked out exactly like you’d hoped this time, you know that next time they will work out better for you.

3. Why not find a family mediator close to you (via Resolution’s website or the family mediation council’s website). Family mediators facilitate discussions between separated parents and help ensure that you can each hear the other. Understanding each other’s points of view and priorities can be really powerful in finding a solution together. Family Mediation is usually the quickest way of resolving any disputes over the holidays.

4. If you are really stuck and you can’t seem to find a way forward that you can both live with then consider arbitration. Arbitration is similar to using the court process in that a third party makes a decision for you about the way forward but it is a much quicker process which can be tailored to your individual situation. It’s available for issues relating to children and can be a much better solution for resolving issues about school holidays. In circumstances where you will likely wait 8 to 12 weeks for a preliminary court hearing about issues relating to children this is only going to help you with summer holidays if you have applied very early on. An arbitrator will be able to make a decision within 6 weeks (or possibly even less) and ensure each party has a chance to explain how they feel. For more information on arbitrators you can visit the website of family arbitrators in the UK.

5. If this is a common occurrence then you might want to think about whether other support might help you to work better together as co-parents. There is a variety of help available to help separated parents to deal with issues that are preventing them from successfully co-parenting. We’ll be discussing this in another blog in this series in more depth.

We hope that these tips will help you to move forward if you feel you and your ex partner have got stuck making arrangements for the holidays. Stay tuned to this series of blogs being published every Monday as we’ll be covering other aspects of organizing summer holidays in more depth. If you’d like to get these blogs directly into your inbox then join our free mailing list. We also have a separate mailing list for professionals working with separating couples.


To watch the Facebook Live discussing this blog in more depth click on the video below:


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2 thoughts on “Arranging summer holidays: what if we can’t agree? Our top tips for dealing with an impasse

  1. Pingback: Arranging Summer Holidays: What Other Support Might Help? | LKW Family Mediation

  2. Pingback: Arranging Summer Holidays: I Just Can't go Through This Every Year | LKW Family Mediation

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