Dear Mom and Dad,
I know you are divorced, but this holiday time I would like you to grant me a wish. No, it’s not that you get back together. I know that’s not going to happen. My wish is that you don’t force me to choose between you. I love you both very much, and it hurts me a lot when either of you put me in the position of having to choose between you for my holiday time.
Adults always talk about how stressful the holiday season is. How about how stressful it is for me, especially when you make me feel guilty about not spending time with you? I’m not a pawn or a bargaining chip to be shoved back and forth. The holidays make me remember all the times when we were all together, when we were really a family. I have to look in boxes that are buried in the garage to find pictures of all of us together at the holidays. I don’t know what the answer is. I don’t know if it’s better to stay at one house or split the time equally. Either way I lose. Either way I feel awful. If I’m with Dad, I feel guilty about not being with Mom. If I’m with Mom, I feel guilty about not being with Dad. I feel like crap, and I don’t have any answers. Sometimes I’m really angry you have made me the victim of the problems between you. The holidays only magnify the feelings by ten. I’m really hurt, confused, and angry, and I don’t have any answers. But nobody else does, either. I guess I’m not alone.
I know you both love me. I appreciate everything you do for me. I don’t tell you how I really feel because I know you have enough to deal with. Besides, you tell me there’s nothing you can do because it’s up to the other one, or it’s their responsibility, or it’s what the court ordered. Well, all I know is I get scared of my own feelings during holidays. I also get scared this will happen to my family when I get older.
So please, Mom and Dad, make my holiday wish come true. I know nothing can ever be perfect again, but please don’t make me choose. It hurts too much, and I don’t know what to do with the pain.
Your loving child,
Tikkun Olam- heal the world. Leave it a better place when you leave.