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Dont want to spend the holidays with my family

UserPost

9:41 am
November 4, 2002


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

with the christmas season coming up, my wheels are turning. not sure what kind of background to provide to set things up here(maybe ladeska can help me with that?) but heres the thing ….

im not very close to my family – i am in a sort of odd way – more of the go with the flow, make everything look normal, fake stuff rather than a genuine closeness.

every christmas eve, my parents have a party for our family. i have 2 married brothers, and 2 married sisters ( that makes 8 adults plus myself, my parents, my grandmother, and an xtra couple guests or so) there are 6 kids among them from age 5, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14. my parents spend a ridiculous amount of money on buying the children gifts (i think its about $500 each) thats a lot of gifts per child. the adults give to their neices and nephews, and get and give to each other too. thats just the way its always been. like a tradition. maybe it sounds fun – but you cant imagine the chaos when the presents are handed out. sometimes you dont even get to see the receiver opening the gift you have carefully selected for them. its just opened and done. for me, the joy is seeing someone get the thing i have picked for them. i always take my time and think about the person and try to do something really special.

anway – ive never been one to enjoy big gatherings and parties. i guess you could say im a party pooper, but its just too much sensory input for me. the noise, the motion, the lights .. and it stresses me out big time. i dont enjoy it. its not a fun thing for me. but i live there, and have to be a part of it, so when im not doing the faky faky i enjoy this thing, i go off by myself to a quiet place to rest. i can only tolerate so much.

my older sister told me she may not come this year becuz of all the chaos. i dont blame her! in fact, i go their house every year to do a gift exchange so we dont have to do it among all the other stuff. she also doesnt understand why my parents cant just give a gift or two. they have to spend hundreds of dollars. i pretty much know the answer to this – when they only had a couple of grandkids, it didnt seem that bad i guess. and then they got more, and.. well, they didnt want to dissapoint the original grandkids by cutting back when more came, and since they can afford it, they just did for the rest – now 6 in all.

okay – so thats what happens on christmas eve. on christmas day – it happens all over again. we all go to my oldest brothers house – everyone in my family (except my older sister) and everyone in my sister-in laws family. i dont like my sister in law becuz she always gives the aire thats shes better than everyone else, and i dont know, dont like and have nothing in common with her family. that leaves my family to hang out with – who i have issues with becuz of the abuse i live with. just like the christmas eve party, it is not fun for me. its very very stressful. but i go becuz i dont want to hurt my brothers feelings. altho we dont talk, except for an occassional hi at work, he's never done anything to hurt me. and i dont want to hurt him. i have expressed many times to my mother that i dont enjoy going to his house on christmas – nothing to do with him, its just too much for me. and she told me that i cane safrifice 'ONE' day. its just one day!i know and so i have – but i am getting stronger now about doing things for me. but, also feeling selfish about that too. but now i think – WHY should i make my christmas miserable? i would much rather stay at home by myself, and enjoy my parents being gone (i dont relax much when they are there) and just feel that freedom. thats what would make me happy on christmas. i know it sounds backwards, but spending time alone is better than going to a big party – for me. i dont enjoy eating in front of people (theres always a big meal) elbow to elbow at the table. dont enjoy all the chatter, the children horsing around ….. and i want to tell my brother – but im afraid too. his feelings will be so hurt. and i would compromise – go every other christmas (and no – i have no where else to go as an excuse and everyone knows it) i feel like things will never be the same after i tell him that. i know after my older sister stopped going for the same reason, things were never the same with them either – but the thing is, i work with my brother. i see him every day. i would still have to face him ….. i feel so torn about what i want (feeling selfish about it) and pleasing him becuz its the right thing to do.

???

10:07 am
November 4, 2002


Cici

New Member

posts -1

I totally empathize with you firefly. This is a toughie. Last year I proclaimed to my family that I would no longer give or receive presents because I feel like Christmas is too materialistic, and I don't like that feeling at all. I also have issues with getting presents because my Mom used to use gifts and shopping sprees as emotional blackmail.

Since this is a family tradition, it's doubly hard. IMO, you can either just make plans to do something else way in advance (like this week) – maybe go on a trip to visit an old friend, or just to sightsee, or something. Then you can say that this was the only convenient time for your friend or whatever.

You could take the direct route and explain what you just wrote out to your brother – do you think he would understand?

Or, you could just bow out and spend the day with you older sister who doesn't go to your brother's place on Christmas day?

What do you think?

10:26 am
November 4, 2002


gingerleigh

New Member

posts -1

I can't give any advice except to say good lord I hear ya and understand! The holiday atmosphere with my family is very different from what you describe, but I hate being there nonetheless. Seems like a mockery of the Christmas Spirit to me. Bah Humbug!!!

11:04 am
November 4, 2002


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

Hey Firefly…

I do not know your background but this year will be the first year i will not be spending any holiday(s) with my family, i had completely cut them off, i don't know…but sometimes you miss things when you do not have it anymore. Are you sure you want to do that? I wish i had my family, but they are selfish, do not even acknowledge they are wrong about anything, it was all me. I know i am better off without them, but i do know i will miss them and the holidays, just something to think about. Hope all is well with you.

Kimberly

11:18 am
November 4, 2002


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

yes, im pretty sure i dont want to be a part of all the chaos… (okay – im postive)a couple years ago i was very sick on christmas day and didnt go to his house – i felt so releived that i had an excuse not to be there, and i was happier home in the quiet by myself even tho i was sick.
plus, i see all the same people and do all the same things on christmas eve -
i guess its more than hurting my brothers feelings ….altho its that too – i will be going against the family – i wont be going with the flow and not just my brother, but everyone will be on me about it. so, what is worse – having the whole family on me for not going, or going and not liking it at all?

11:46 am
November 4, 2002


Ladeska

New Member

posts -1

Well you're just damned if you do and damned if you don't, huh? Ah yes – the Tribal Tradition Madness….. There is something in those traditions that mention a sacrifice, isn't there? I know I read that somewhere….(fumbling through the rule book as we speak here….) Yea, yea, here it is….

And thou shalt provide thyself as a willing sacrifice to be poked at, proded, bored to tears and angered beyond measure and should prepare thyself to take it while smiling, while dressed nicely, carrying a covered dish and bearing gifts, all the while tucking anything that might escape thee in the way of gas, vomit, profanities, and God forbid – thou shalt NOT – give the LOOK to anyone!

Thou shalt smile and nod and let the games begin. Thou shalt pretend to see nothing, know nothing and above all else – speak anything intelligent throughout the tribal tradition. Thou shalt take they punishment with a smile on thy face and a prompt thank you for whatever beating my ensue of mind, body or spirit – because thou knowest that you had it coming because sometime during the year – you must have displeased someone in the tribe and even if you didn't – you are the appointed sacrifice and that's just the way things are done and have always been done.

Thou shalt NOT go against the family traditions and if you do – there can be none more evil than you!!!!!! And you will be dealt with accordingly. The tribe has spoken. Let the rituals begin. Merry Christmas.

12:00 pm
November 4, 2002


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

remember the posts about the family cult-like thing? – i barely read any of that, there were just too many triggers – but, this is kinda the same? isnt it? going against the cult? i 'know' what i want to do, i know what i 'should' do … im just scared to death to do it. if i do , do it – then i will beat myself up for being selfish – just like ive done lately when ive made my own decisions that went against the grain. .. i do what i want – but then get so upset i punish myself for it.

12:07 pm
November 4, 2002


gingerleigh

New Member

posts -1

Ladeska, you give me ideas… roasted garlic for a week straight before the big visit. That ought to show them. I feel sorry for the people who have to sit next to me on the plane though…

12:48 pm
November 4, 2002


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

What I use to do, towards the end for a bit was to suggest we only exchange one gift, and i kept them to that, for the most part. I would then suggest we not do birthdays or cards with money, but empty cards were ok. It broke off the obligation thingie with them. And made it easier for me to pull away. When they did hurtful things, I would act as if it did not phase me, but it did and over time, it just became too much for me to deal with. I stopped begging them to do things with us at the holidays, since they really did not want to anyhow. We went and had a good time anyhow. Hope this helps some:)

Love,
Kimberly

12:54 pm
November 4, 2002


bel

Member

posts 15

I also don't like crowds and so much noise and goings on. If its family IM more tolerant but I only like to stay at the most an hour. And when IM trying to leave I hear why are you going? You just got here? Stay a little longer. Sometimes I just sneak out so that no one will talk me into staying a little longer. And if I dont go at all IM called strange or wierd or nutty.

I think IM really introverted and a loner, I have been all my life. I do like company everyone once in awhile but not much and I like them to home early. My son is the same way, he has lots of friends and gets company but wants them all to home by a certain hour.


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