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How to prevent the Grinch from ruining your holidays

If your divorce is beginning during (or dragging through) the holiday season, chances are that your soon-to-be ex is about as happy as the Grinch Who Stole Christmas. He or she could be spent on ruining your holiday season out of revenge, jealousy or loneliness. You could receive harassing emails and text messages, be subjected to outrageous demands for exchanges or payments for gifts, or you may be threatened with court action if you do not meet specific demands. All of which can rob you of the cheer and good tidings the holidays are supposed to bring.

Fortunately, you can be resilient and tame the Grinch just like the Whoseeee in Whoville did by following these tips:

Be wary of tones - The way to stay in the holiday spirit is to keep an upbeat tone (especially in e-mails), no matter how demanding the Grinch may be. Remember, the Grinch's goal is to ruin the holidays, and if he (or she) gets under your skin, they win.

Make happiness their idea - This may take a bit of verbal (or emotional) judo, but the Grinch finally learned about the spirit of the holidays and was warm, generous and fun to be around. Perhaps the idea of seeing the children happy will spark a change and spare you any vitriol.

Celebrate regardless of the pain - While exes know how to push your buttons, you should not let their antics ruin your holiday. It may be easier said than done, but with good friends and family, you can control your happiness.

Source:, Classic Christmas review: How the Grinch Stole Christmas, December 2, 2012

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