Author Topic: Christmas Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma - UPDATE P 19.  (Read 5061 times)

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Fer

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Christmas Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma - UPDATE P 19.
« on: November 24, 2011, 10:53:36 PM »
Every year in my DH's family, they rotate who hosts Christmas.  It spreads the costs around, and the burden of hosting a minimum of 10 people plus in-laws and cousins (etc etc etc) isn't dumped on one family.

In the past, it's usually been organised so that the host essentially has an open house all day for their in-laws and parents, while the other siblings visits their partner's families.  Then DH's immediate family and partners all converge on Host for dinner.  (I hope I'm making sense?)

This year it's BiL's turn to host, and he's thrown a spanner in the works by insisting he wants to host lunch.  Their reasoning is that because BiL's GF doesn't do Christmas visiting (due to divorced parents and general apathy) they don't want to wait all day for the rest of us, which from their perspective, is fair enough.

But in my own family, Christmas lunch is The Main Meal.  It's been the special holiday meal since probably before I was born, the one time of year we ALL set aside for family.  I don't get to see my grandmothers or my brother much, so Christmas lunch is when we all get to catch up.

I'm not happy about throwing my entire family's plans into chaos - nor, indeed are my parents - but I know if we don't do it BiL's way, the proverbial will hit the oscillating device.  And of course, we do still want to see DH's family!

I'm going to talk to my parents tomorrow about it, but the way I see it, I have three realistic options:

1: have Christmas with my family on Christmas Eve. 
Pro: Only one hour-long drive. 
Con: My cousins invite us to have Christmas dinner with them on Christmas Eve, and I don't want to hijack their evening.  Also not everyone will be there. 

2: See my family in the morning.
Pro: Get to still help mum with the lunchtime preparations, see everyone beforehand.
Con: Not much time to see them, not joining the meal.

3: See my family in the evening
Pro:  ??
Con: After a long day everyone will be exhausted and not in the mood for socialising.  Lunch will likely turn into an all-day-BBQ-fest or something, so we won't get a chance anyway (someone will moan if we skip out early).  Plus, hour drive home.
 
EHellions, what would you do?  If your family gave no preference either way, which would you rather do?

==

Additional info: There are no children involved at this point in time (if/when they arrive traditions will probably change, to much friction, I'm sure!).  We're all adults, all working, all able to drive.  DH's immediate family live within 20 minutes drive of each other, and we all see each other weekly. My family (and the family of DH's sister's husband) are about an hour away.  If it matters, BiL is the eldest sibling.

Extra you're-being-difficult BG: The first year my DH and I hosted, BiL and SiL decided to start a "traditional" 11am pancake brunch with the rest of DH's family (we weren't invited), knowing full-well that we had planned a proper sit-down meal for midday.  DH and I were furious!  And the last time he hosted dinner, he kept us waiting until 9pm, for teeny portions of gnocchi.  Not impressed there, either, given that we'd cut short my family's celebrations to get there "on time" (because he complains we're late getting back).
« Last Edit: November 26, 2011, 02:08:24 AM by Fer »

LeveeWoman

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2011, 11:16:52 PM »
I'd do what you usually do with your side of the family. If the bully BIL gets mad, he'll just have to get mad.

MariaE

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2011, 01:04:05 AM »
I agree with LeveeWoman. You have a previous engagement (i.e. seeing your family) and won't be able to join BIL for lunch.
 
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JoyinVirginia

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2011, 02:31:52 AM »
You and your DH have your own traditions in your family - which is primarily you and DH, even if no kids. One of those traditions is going to your parents home for Christmas day lunch. There is no reason why your parents have to change their routine because of your BIL. If anyone gets upset, then decrease your frequency of visiting so you will not have to hear about it. If it is your DH who does not want to miss lunch with his brother, then go to lunch at your parents by yourself. MariaE is correct, this is a long-standing prior engagement.

Talley

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2011, 03:10:25 AM »
I agree with the previous posters. Stick with what is tradition for your immediate family - that's DH and you - which is going for lunch with your parents. Besides, you may find that you are not the only ones who can't/won't change their Christmas traditions for BIL's lunch. Do you know what the other people who usually attend the dinner think about BIL's plan?


LEMon

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2011, 03:24:20 AM »
Yes, BIL will get upset, but he has already proved how much he cares about your needs twice plus now.  Keep your plans and let him be upset.  If he really cared, he wouldn't have done what he has done in the past.  I suspect he is trying for control of the day and doesn't mind at all that it will mess your previous well-defined plans up.

I really hope your DH is on your side.  BIL doesn't care about his needs/feelings either as he has proved.  But I can understand it will be hard for him to deal with the pressure he will receive.

My answer would be "we (or I, if DH will be going to BIL's) already have set plans with my folks.  Go ahead without us.  We'll visit with you on another day."

rm247

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2011, 05:18:39 AM »
I go with the first come, first served method of dealing with conflicting appointments.

You made plans with your family first, therefore they take precedence. I have been in similar situations myself and by always sticking to the first come, first served method (regardless of which one i would rather do) nobody gets upset.

Simply explain to your BIL that you have plans already at that time, but you can still come around after the meal to spend time with the family.

camlan

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #7 on: November 25, 2011, 08:01:27 AM »
You have choices--you can be upset, your family can be upset, or BIL can be upset. Which would you rather chose?

Some people always get upset when other people don't go along with their plans. There's nothing wrong with that--people can get upset if they choose to do so. And there's nothing wrong with you making a choice that gets someone else upset--you are allowed to live your life as you choose to do so. All the "getting upset" business is a way of controlling other people.

You are allowed to make a decision that BIL doesn't like, if it works better for you and your DH. Just make sure your DH is on the same page and then do what the two of you feel is best
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


kckgirl

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #8 on: November 25, 2011, 09:10:33 AM »
I'm going to talk to my parents tomorrow about it, but the way I see it, I have three realistic options:

1: have Christmas with my family on Christmas Eve. 
Pro: Only one hour-long drive. 
Con: My cousins invite us to have Christmas dinner with them on Christmas Eve, and I don't want to hijack their evening.  Also not everyone will be there. 

2: See my family in the morning.
Pro: Get to still help mum with the lunchtime preparations, see everyone beforehand.
Con: Not much time to see them, not joining the meal.

3: See my family in the evening
Pro:  ??
Con: After a long day everyone will be exhausted and not in the mood for socialising.  Lunch will likely turn into an all-day-BBQ-fest or something, so we won't get a chance anyway (someone will moan if we skip out early).  Plus, hour drive home.
 
EHellions, what would you do?  If your family gave no preference either way, which would you rather do?

You don't have only three realistic options. I choose:

4. Do what you want, and what you've always done. Go to your family for lunch, and meet with DH's family at dinnertime, even if there is no meal. You have a previous engagement, and your family doesn't have to change its plans to meet inconsiderate BIL's plan.
Maryland

Lynda_34

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #9 on: November 25, 2011, 09:32:16 AM »
Sounds like BIL is trying to take control/hijack the day. 
It can only get worse.
I like the, Oh sorry previous plans, will meet up for dessert, yes I can bring pie.
You said there were no children involved YET, keep your on control now and you won't lose it.
Good luck and hoping for an update as well as foreshadowing of the next set of holidays.
 

Deetee

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2011, 10:24:05 AM »
You have choices--you can be upset, your family can be upset, or BIL can be upset. Which would you rather chose?


Yup, you can't make everyone happy so decide who who you want to make happy and remember that BIL is changing the plans, not you.

MassachusettsMomx4

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2011, 10:30:48 AM »
Traditional lunch with parents, bro, and Grandmas trump your BIL's noveau plans. 

kudeebee

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #12 on: November 25, 2011, 01:50:45 PM »
I would not change my plans.  Have lunch with your family.  Call before you leave and see if anyone is still at bils and how long they plan to stay.  Then decide if you are going to go over there or not.

If bil complains, "Sorry but lunch with my family is a tradition on Christmas Day.  We will not miss it because you have decided to change dhfamily meal to another time.  Hope to see you later in the afternoon."

rigs32

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #13 on: November 25, 2011, 09:00:20 PM »
I don't understand why none of your possible solutions include having you family's traditional meal.

SamiHami

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Re: Christmas - the Lunchtime Visiting Dilemma (long and possibly confusing)
« Reply #14 on: November 25, 2011, 09:11:04 PM »
What does your DH's family think of BIL changing their family tradition to accomodate a non-family member (GF)? I think I'd be pretty ticked off over that part as well.

As others have posted, there is no reason for you to cancel your own traditional plans. Why would you care if BIL gets mad? It's not like he seems to care about anyone else's feelings.

What have you got? Is it food? Is it for me? I want it whatever it is!