This time of year is a joyous time of year for Jewish families to get together and celebrate the holidays. It is also a time for increased conflict for separated or divorced parents who want to spend time with their children. Couples should sit down with a Jewish calendar and create a schedule so that everyone can spend quality time together. A mediator can assist the couple when communication is difficult.
Typically parents will alternate the holidays on a yearly basis. For more observant families parents will need to communicate in detail about travel plans since they will often not be permitted to drive. Phone calls often must be arranged before or after the holiday in order to be compliant with the Sabbath rules. Jeswish dietary laws must also be observed and compliance with such rules must be explicitly discussed.
Helene is a divorce and family law attorney and mediator. She has represented Orthodox children in contested litigated custody disputes in court and is sensitive to their needs and concerns.