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Christmas - Hell for Relationships?

Christmas - Hell for Relationships?

Spending time together and with families during the Christmas holidays can put pressure on failing relationships and expose their fault lines. Christmas holidays and time off from work adds immense pressure on difficult relationships that have had problems for some time. Somehow the regular routine of school runs and going to and from work can minimise the chance for problems to fester and only when the Christmas break comes along, do unhappy couples come face-to-face with the problems underlying their relationship.

It is all too common for people to say “let’s stick it out for the kid’s sake” or “let’s have one last try over Christmas and see how we get on”, or even, “let’s have a fresh start in the New Year”.

What can employers do to help employees with relationship issues?

After Christmas, employees not only have to deal with this on a personal level, they also have to come into work and continue to act professionally despite the emotional turmoil going on in their head.


As a boss you walk in and find your employee/colleague upset, human natures dictates that we ask why they are upset. We recognise that an employee’s divorce is a business issue and employers should be aware:

Keep communication open

  • Be supportive, continue to keep talking to the employee and provide emotional support

  • Ask them if they want to talk about it

  • Ask them if there are ways you can help them in their job at this time

  • Consider providing support for some of their tasks if they are clearly not coping.

Recognise their performance may suffer

  • When a couple is separating, that’s a personal problem they can’t ignore. They do not leave their separation at the office or factory door. They carry it around, like a ton weight on their shoulders. As there personal life is in tatters, they can struggle at work, they can get upset, irritable and distracted and they might need comforting, they might make mistakes or need time off work for doctor appointment or a counsellor to cope with what is happening.

Suggest Collaborative Law

  • As a caring Boss, if you witness your valued colleague getting sucked into a nasty family dispute, you can help them by suggesting they seek the advice of a trained Collaborative Lawyer, so they can get impartial relationship advice that’s right for their situation.

Recognise that for employees divorce is hard

  • Maintaining a high level of work performance through the long and often devastating process is even more difficult. However with the right advice and support these emotionally trying times don’t need to drastically affect work performance or careers in the long run.

These few simple steps mean employers can be better at caring and supporting employees through difficult times.


What can I do to help my relationship problems?

Emma Piff says – “You don’t have to face a nasty divorce”

“I often see couples falling straight into the divorce process without considering other options first.

As a form of mediation, Collaborative Law provides a process for disputing couples and families to work together, to discuss the issues and collaborate with the help of lawyers around a table.

You talk politely on first name terms, you work on your problems together with benefit of your own lawyer for support and advice. As you and your ex-partner discuss matters and reach the answers more quickly, you might even save money rather than paying for a protracted divorce and avoid lots of traumatic stress.

Collaborative lawyers do not have a magic wand to make relationship issues go away, nor can we guarantee happiness, but we can help couples to mitigate some of the worst effects of a poor relationship getting nasty and going wrong.

If you get into a into a nasty relationship conflict, you can waste a lot of time, money and energy arguing over everything in a divorce court which will prolong the dispute and prolong being able to move on with your life. The Collaborative Law route can help.”

If you would like to find out more about Collaborative Law principles and how it works, please get in touch.

How to Contact Us

If you do need to talk through your personal relationship circumstances with someone who's completely independent and unbiased, please do talk to us. We're here to help and advise you and help you through the personal problems you face. You can rely on our experience, expertise and emotional support to put you on the right course of action, a path that's totally right for you.

Get in touch today. We want to help.

Emma Piff 

Emma Piff, Family Solicitor, Lawson-West Solicitors

With offices in Leicester, Market Harborough and Wigston you can arrange an initial meeting with us to find out how we can help you with Collaborative Law, Divorce or Separation.

Call 0116 212 1000  for our Leicester Office,  01858 445 480 for our Market Harborough Office or 0116 212 1080 for our Wigston Office. Whichever office you call, someone will be available to assist you. 

Useful links:

20 Common Misconceptions about Family Breakdown

Latest Divorce Statistics


View all

Coronavirus:  We are pleased to announce we are Open for Business

Even during Leicester’s most recent, extended lockdown, you can be assured that it is ‘Business as Usual’ at Lawson-West and we're here to help you with your legal needs. 

We are driven by our commitment to help others. We are here. For you.

At this time, please contact us by telephone, website enquiry or email.
We’re here to help:

4 Dominus Way, Meridian Business Park, LE19 1RP           Tel: 0116 2121000

44 Long Street, Wigston, LE18 2AH                                              Tel: 0116 2121080

Market Harborough
Millers House, Roman Way,
Market Harborough, LE16 7PQ                                                        Tel: 01858 445480



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