Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

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Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:41 pm

I might be on my own here but if anyone has any stresses or needs to vent about the season then please post it here!

My FIL is a nightmare. He's a nightmare at the best of times but that's a whole other story. I'm sure it'll crop up at some point. He's one of those people who is very community minded and everyone thinks is great - all true as long as things are going his way. If anyone has other plans, wants to break tradition or just doesn't give a toss about playing Who Wants To Be A Millionaire all effing day on Boxing Day then there are issues. Dan is more than aware of my feelings, he's tried to talk to him about it but it's just one of those occasions where everyone else is wrong and because something has happened every flaming year since the year dot then there's no need for it to change and if there is change then that person is wrong.

I mean heaven forfend I want to visit my own family at Christmas, what kind of antisocial weirdo would want to do that?

Blood pressure rising now and I haven't even got into it yet. Need a cup of tea... that's another thing, he won't have a cup of tea on the very rare occasion he comes to our house, his wife has to force him to sit down and behave. Yes, the thought has crossed my mind that he just doesn't like me!


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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  froogs on Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:50 pm

Well if he doesn't like you alec eiffel you have to pity the poor fella for putting so much effort into peeing you off.

I have similar gripes with my in-laws but it's to do with my mum staying and being with my girls on Christmas day when she isn't invited. The thing is if I was to invite her for christmas lunch she wouldn't come because her daughter has her at her house!

So I have to put up with the uncomfy feelings just because she likes to play the undue marter Rolling Eyes

Yes, I'm sure there will be more but I'm chuffed you've started the tread because any little stupid niggle will not now fester in my head.
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:55 pm

I recently shared my coping strategy with Dan. I play buzzword bingo. I know what he's going to talk about so I pick several of his pet topics (I pick different ones each time) and see how many crop up while we're with him. Problem is, now Dan's in on the act he plays too - so we spend our time trying to get him to say certain things so we can win the game. So we just spend our time laughing our heads off. Yes, I am a child and an evil one at that.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  TP on Wed Sep 07, 2011 11:05 pm

We dont see any family at xmas these days its just me and the oh. We have various problems/hurdles which mean we dont meet up. Son hasnt spend xmas with us for ages, maybe it will change one day who knows. I therefore dont have any problems/stresses about who is spending it where and with whom and dont have the present worry either. What to buy people, whether they will like it etc, how much to spend. We enjoy the Christmas break and being together Smile with a few days off as mentioned before oh dosent get many days off due to working. pale

I therefore dont have any problems/stresses about who is spending it where and with whom, and dont have the present worry either. What to buy people, whether they will like it etc, how much to spend.

Whether i am missing out or not i dont know but that is my situation at the moment and to be honest some of the best christmases i have had are when oh and i are just together. I'd really miss him if he wasnt here. pale
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Wed Sep 07, 2011 11:15 pm

I agree with you.

I used to volunteer to work on Christmas day because we only worked until about 11.30 then left the guests to do their own thing but it meant we didn't have to visit anyone and it was great. The past few years we've been to watch some sport on Boxing Day to get out of the party hell and we go some time between Christmas and new year. I don't mind that as we get a lecture about how things just aren't the same but by that point no-one other than him gives a toss anyway so it's tolerable.

MIL and my parents are fine about it. I think what gets on Dan's nerves is that his dad isn't that bothered about seeing us the rest of the year unless he wants something so why the big fake family nonsense at Christmas? I think he just hasn't moved on from when he was a teenager, it's like his life since uni hasn't sunk in, he doesn't know any of his friends or anything like that and still thinks he works in housing - something he hasn't done since 2002. His wife and Dan's grandmother are really cool so it's good to see them. Grandma is in her 80's and since her husband died she refuses to stand on ceremony. Apparently she loves me because I've set my stall out early and refuse to get sucked into it. So we are forever exchanging looks and she's always rolling her eyes, lol.

It took Dan's other grandad 26 years of marriage to announce he didn't like carrots on his Christmas dinner so we made the decision to never keep things like that in Laughing

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  lollyfin on Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:02 am

I have probs with my inlaws as well
they have never made the effort to visit us, even when we had very little money we were expected to drive to visit them every week which was then spent sitting around for 4-5 hours listening to them talk about people i didnt know. When my OH went offshore I decided I wasnt doing this anymore, he goes when he comes home and me and the kids actually very rarely go with him now. He has been offshore for 6 years in that time me and the kids have had 2 phone calls from them and only because they wanted to know why he hadnt been round (he was working!). We have been in this house for 12 years they have visited us 5 times since we moved in.
as far as christmas goes they expected us for years to pack up the kids and their presents and come to them for the morning then come back here to go to my parents for our dinner (we were never invited to theirs for dinner, not once).I decided a few years ago this wasnt happening any more. They did new years dinner for about 3 years then stopped that with no explanation just told us that christmas that they werent doing it any more. So now I do new years dinner for my parents and we still have christmas with my parents (got issues with my sister tho!)
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  dolly blue on Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:41 pm

Since having my kids (eldest 22) I've never done the going out to mum/dads in laws for Xmas lunch, but have had some over, well sister visited one christmas afternoon and left mum and dad with me (they didn't drive) had to give them tea and take them home Shocked . Think sister did it so she didn't have to have them Laughing .
Now all the oldies have popped off its just oh, kids and myself, looking forward to the day when the kids don't want to come home and its just the two of us, always fancied a picnic on the beach lol
I have the feeling my kids will aways come back for a feed they can cook but don't want to cook lol
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  TP on Fri Sep 09, 2011 11:29 pm

A picnic on the beach in England in Winter Shocked Wink

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Fri Sep 09, 2011 11:35 pm

TP wrote:A picnic on the beach in England in Winter Shocked Wink

It's great - same as in the summer only you take toasties instead of normal butties. Oh and you need two flasks - one for tea as normal and the other for benedictine and hot water. Kite optional but recommended.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  flibsey on Mon Sep 12, 2011 7:00 pm

James and I both have problem inlaws Wink

1. my mum's cooking is not great.
2. his parents are divorced and live on opposite sides of the country. even for sophie's birthday we have to try and stagger visitors to our house so their paths don't cross... and nobody let Paul (jim's dad) know Sophie is besotted with Harry (Jim's stepdad) but dislikes him... Sad
3. whatever. last year we did the rounds, went to Paul's, went to jim's brothers' house (there are two, they share a house), went to my parents', then home again... but we'd had our big celebration on Yule so it didn't matter. and we saw Marie (jim's mum) a couple of days before xmas.

I live for the year Jim wins the work lottery and gets to work on xmas day.
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Mon Sep 12, 2011 7:29 pm

Dan's parents are divorced too. They only live a few miles apart though so that's not too bad, it's 40 odd miles from here though so it's not just a jump in the car thing. My parents live further away in the opposite direction. I know my parents would love us to go to their house on Christmas day but I have been impressed with how my mum has been relaxed about it when I say we won't be there. I kind of give her the option of all day a day or two before Christmas or a couple of hours on Christmas day so a whole day it is!

It's really tough with MIL, she makes Christmas lunch and all that stuff but since her dad died she and her mum don't really want to celebrate it so we all just sit about. Her husband has got cancer so last year we spent Christmas day at the hospital and this year may be the last one together so that adds onto the stress. And FIL well, he's in a world of his own...


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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  knitmylife on Mon Oct 03, 2011 1:47 am

my husband cant tolerate my sister and wont have his christmas spoiled by having to spend any time with her so that always causes a problem.

i have no in laws so no problem there.

my parents come here every other year and are wonderful no trouble at all. the opposite year they have my sister to theirs (not my sister never has them there!!! not good).

my husband cant tolerate my eldest son either so that is a major issue. he's 21 now and hasnt lived at home for some time and i always see him around christmas time but he prefers to spend it with his mates which is fine as long as he is happy.

im pretty chilled really i usually invite everyone (except the above mentioned) and see who turns up on the day x
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  2boysmum on Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:55 pm

I don't have any inlaws but we always have my dad and sister over on christmas day, since my mum passed away 6 years ago he gets very depressed at christmas, understandable, we all miss her but life goes on and I need to make christmas special for the boys. He brings up the boys presents, has his dinner, then goes home, he can't get away quick enough!! My sister is 24 so comes up has her dinner then usually drinks too much wine and ends up being carried home by her boyfriend.
Sometimes I feel like just booking up and going away for christmas just to get out of the usual routine!
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  TP on Wed Oct 05, 2011 12:19 am

ive never been away at Christmas. I wonder what its like. Be very expensive i guess.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Wed Oct 05, 2011 12:22 am

I went to Paris for Christmas with my ex one Christmas (he wasn't my ex then obviously). I think we paid about £400 each, half board for 4 days. It was amazing.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:28 pm

We have never seen FIL on Christmas Day. So we were pretty surprised to get an email from him asking us if we want to go over this year (I don't know if I'd said before but he claims he doesn't have our phone number so will only email). He set it up along the lines that he assumes we'll be going to Dan's mums so it would save us petrol to go to see him too. That sounds nice doesn't it? Not a bit of it, they usually spend the day with FIL's step children but they both have children now and want to have Christmas to themselves (which is fair enough) so here's Dan, third in the pecking order now there's no-one else coming over.

So Dan emailed back saying we are not going to MIL's this year but we'd come over before Christmas to drop gifts off then see them between Christmas and New Year. Then he receives this message "Are you going somewhere else for Christmas then, it's ok if you are". Sooooo it's not ok if we just want to spend the day in our own home on our own? Dan doesn't want to have it out with his Dad, which I understand but I wasn't keen on him saying we were going to my parents house, because we're not and I think it would just line up problems in the future. So he ignored the question and just offered a list of days we can visit.

I know it seems like we might be taking things the wrong way but believe me it is the way we're seeing it. It makes me sooooooo cross. I'm very confrontational and would have it out with him because I think he's very selfish and disrespectful towards his only child but Dan is a nice guy and would like to avoid it if possible. My parents and Dan's mum always say - we know you probably want to spend time on your own but you're always welcome to come over if you choose to and we'd love to see you. I think that's fair, but this guilt trip to stop him spending Christmas without loads of people around is right out of order to me. Maybe I'm being a bit out of order too, but the cumulative effect of the things he's said and the way he acts has lead me to this conclusion. I try to not get cross because it's not fair to Dan but I won't have anyone take the pee. Grrrrrrr.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  dolly blue on Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:17 pm

The spending xmas day with who thing is a biggy isn't it for many, I feel like screaming to some people its only a day, but don't think that would help some it would just wind them up more, I wouldn't mind if some of my friends and family were religious but they ain't, its all seems to be who's having who and who is getting the short straw and getting the boring ones Laughing
I've made it clear to my DD that she is not obliged to return every xmas day and she can do as she pleases, yes I would like to see her but she as her own life.
God I sound grumpy Embarassed
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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:23 pm

You don't sound grumpy at all. I totally understand. There must be so many people falling foul of having to do certain things because it's "tradition" and no-ones happy. What's that called, the Abilene Principle? Where everyone goes along with something but no-one actually wants to do it.

We'd had a great day talking about things, buying gifts and planning how we could fit seeing everyone in as close to Christmas as possible then we get this bloody travel agent for guilt trips wading in and spoiling it. What really pees me off is that I will be accused by him of being the cause of all this and being selfish when it's him being the selfish one!

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  TP on Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:39 pm

just me and oh so we dont have this. Hope you find something to suit you.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  alec eiffel on Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:44 pm

Oh don't you worry, we'll do what suits us. I just know FIL will try to make Dan feel as guilty as possible in the meantime! The funny thing is, if we had children we wouldn't get this, but he doesn't see us as being a family because there's just the two of us.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  TP on Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:37 am

son causes me upset all year round, Christmas wont be different. It highlights it more i guess.

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Re: Family and Other Problems at Christmas...

Post  knitmylife on Tue Dec 20, 2011 8:55 am

sorry to hear that TP x
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