Author Topic: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas  (Read 3728 times)

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JeanFromBNA

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2013, 06:27:35 PM »
I think I'll have to have a chat with OH about how it is a special day for me and what I'd like too. His Bah! humbug! attitude could be a bit of a downer for me. (to be fair, he'll do his share of the work, but he won't enjoy it overall. I can't really expect him to change his attitude, there must be reasons he doesn't like it,  but hope he can find something about OUR version he'll genuinely like. The only reason he can tell me is that it'salways just a big expense he can't afford.) I guess this is our chance to re-design our Christmases and make them about what we feel is important, instead of what we've had inflicted on us in the past.

Food for thought, indeed.

Your last paragraph sums up what you should look for next Christmas.  This Christmas, just go with the flow, and do what you think is right, not what you think that other people think is right. 

My DH has mixed feelings about Christmas that extend from his childhood to his first marriage (for that matter, so do I).  We are mature adults without kids.  For Christmas we might do any number of things, from visiting friends or relatives here or in other areas of the U.S., to staying home, to vacationing in the Caribbean. Sometimes we decorate the whole house, sometimes I just put up a wreath. Sometimes we buy a lot of presents, sometimes we don't.  It's not the same thing every time.  Except for the food.  What DH likes best about the holidays is the food.  I always plan some meals trying new and fancy dishes and we enjoy cooking together.  I guess that our tradition is the fancy holiday meal. 

What do you and your OH enjoy doing together?

Marbles

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2013, 03:45:46 AM »
My DH was not fond of Christmas when we first got together, but I've won him over. It's only taken a decade.  ;D
A couple of years ago, I was sick through December and he baked all our Christmas cookies for me.  :-*

Initially, he'd grumble a bit at my preparations, and help when I needed it (carrying the tree, for instance) but he didn't want to do anything more. Now he still grumbles but tells me up front it's just for show - he'll tease that the tree doesn't need to go up until the 24th and should come down on the 26th - but he also tells me that he enjoys what I do and enjoys the holidays we have made together. I think it helps that I have a low-drama family. His... is not, nor was his exwife's.

English1

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2013, 06:11:28 AM »
Turn out OH is really not happy about my going  :-[ but I refuse to feel guilty about it. His point is 'why is it always you?' and why haven't my other siblings not stepped in as well/instead. Well, my sister is going to pop in to see them early morning on her way out to her other arrangements, and the other brother, who knows? I'm a bit miffed by his lack of understanding - to be frank there aren't going to be many more Christmases with my parents. But I'm glad he can be honest about his feelings with me, and he has done a lot for my parents since I met him. So not a big deal that he's a bit disgruntled by this.

He's told his parents I'm going to have to disappear in the afternoon. They don't mind.

BarensMom

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2013, 11:46:46 AM »
Turn out OH is really not happy about my going  :-[ but I refuse to feel guilty about it. His point is 'why is it always you?' and why haven't my other siblings not stepped in as well/instead. Well, my sister is going to pop in to see them early morning on her way out to her other arrangements, and the other brother, who knows? I'm a bit miffed by his lack of understanding - to be frank there aren't going to be many more Christmases with my parents. But I'm glad he can be honest about his feelings with me, and he has done a lot for my parents since I met him. So not a big deal that he's a bit disgruntled by this.

He's told his parents I'm going to have to disappear in the afternoon. They don't mind.

I would express that to your OH - "Dear, my parents are in declining health, and I can't depend upon my siblings.  They will not be around forever, and a little inconvenience now is worth more than many years of regrets."

In similar circumstances, my DH once said, "Do you just want to go back and LIVE with your parents?"  I gave him the above response, more or less, and went on my way.  It made him think, and he started spending more time with my parents, including taking turns with me staying with them in the hospital.  Neither one of us has any regrets.

TootsNYC

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2013, 01:02:11 PM »
Turn out OH is really not happy about my going  :-[ but I refuse to feel guilty about it. His point is 'why is it always you?' and why haven't my other siblings not stepped in as well/instead. Well, my sister is going to pop in to see them early morning on her way out to her other arrangements, and the other brother, who knows? I'm a bit miffed by his lack of understanding - to be frank there aren't going to be many more Christmases with my parents. But I'm glad he can be honest about his feelings with me, and he has done a lot for my parents since I met him. So not a big deal that he's a bit disgruntled by this.

He's told his parents I'm going to have to disappear in the afternoon. They don't mind.

You know, I kinda like him. I like this point: "why is it always you?"
That sounds like he's looking out for *you* (I guess it could sound like he doesn't want to have to share you--I hope not).

But yeah, when do you get to lay down that burden?

But BarensMom has some really good points, since this *is* what you want to do with that day.

cicero

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2013, 01:56:10 AM »
You know, that just hadn't occurred to me  ::)  Great solution! Lunch with his parents and then I can leave them all to it. And do a Vicar of Dibley, indeed  ;D

I think OH may nix it though - it's our first Christmas together and he likes us to do stuff together, and we'll only have those two days off work. If he says no, he wants to come to parents with me if I'm going, then what...

Bit more info: Neither of my parents can drive now, and they live about an hours drive from me. So yes while it would have been nice for Mum to come over (she's not seen my flat either and would like to) it would be four hours driving to pick her up and then return her the same day. I have done it in the past but Dad can't be left that long now.
glad you worked things out for now but you really need to look into the future- getting your folks to move closer to you, or you moving closer to them, getting a full time or on call care taker to give your mom a break, getting your siblings to help out, etc...

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sammycat

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #21 on: November 30, 2013, 03:36:13 AM »
Turn out OH is really not happy about my going  :-[ but I refuse to feel guilty about it. His point is 'why is it always you?' and why haven't my other siblings not stepped in as well/instead. Well, my sister is going to pop in to see them early morning on her way out to her other arrangements, and the other brother, who knows? I'm a bit miffed by his lack of understanding - to be frank there aren't going to be many more Christmases with my parents. But I'm glad he can be honest about his feelings with me, and he has done a lot for my parents since I met him. So not a big deal that he's a bit disgruntled by this.

He's told his parents I'm going to have to disappear in the afternoon. They don't mind.

You know, I kinda like him. I like this point: "why is it always you?"
That sounds like he's looking out for *you*
(I guess it could sound like he doesn't want to have to share you--I hope not).

But yeah, when do you get to lay down that burden?

But BarensMom has some really good points, since this *is* what you want to do with that day.

This occurred to me too.

Assuming your SO is approaching it from an angle of "why are you the one who (always?) needs to pick up the pieces" I can see where he's coming from and is expressing his frustration at seeing you feeling guilty for something that isn't your fault.

OTOH, if he just doesn't want you to go out at all, then that's a different matter.

miranova

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Re: I can't make everyone happy at Christmas
« Reply #22 on: December 01, 2013, 04:54:28 PM »
Hmmm, I think the boyfriend is being a tad unfair.  He wants to see his parents on Christmas Day (even though he doesn't like the holiday) and you are supporting that, to the point of inviting them to your home.  You want to see your own parents on Christmas Day, who are in declining health, and he doesn't seem to be very supportive of that idea at all, to the point of guilting you over it.  Totally not cool in my opinion.