- 6 years ago
Hope you Bees are having a wonderful Christmas Eve! Mine started off lovely – woke up at 5am to snow and went for coffee & breakfast with Fiance before he went in to work. I’ve been busy getting the house ready because my family is coming… sometime. I’ve been trying to plan this visit with them for about 3 weeks. I know to start early because my family tends to leave things to the last minute, and with so much going on I wanted to be SURE when they were coming and for how long.
Despite dozens of phone calls between myself and my mother, I just got off the phone holding back tears of frustration: they are packing up and getting ready to leave Ohio to drive to my mom’s second apartment in Buffalo (she keeps two since my brothers live with their father in Ohio and she works in NY). I had thought the plan was to have them come for the day on Monday. In fact, yesterday, when I spoke to my mother, that was the plan. And if she couldn’t swing that, they were going to come tomorrow.
She’s in a huge tizzy now because they were invited to have dinner tomorrow with her former landlord, who she doesn’t want to make upset because she still owes the woman money. I asked if there was any way she could call her now and apologetically get out of it, but they can’t. My mom suddenly works the 26th now – something she neglected to tell me anytime before this – so they can’t come that day.
So now the only option is for them to come sometime during the week, which is not deal but I suppose will have to do. It isn’t going to be easy: I work every day 8:30-5:30 and Fiance works most days 7:00-3:00. We go to bed pretty early most nights so we can be up for our commutes, so hosting people for a holiday event in the middle of the week is going to really mess that up. But, if that’s what it takes, we’ll try and do it.
My big worry, always, when my family visits is this: There is a LOT of bad blood and anger between the four of us (my mom, 2 teenage brothers and me). It’d take a lifetime to explain the nuances, but basically – we fight, a LOT. I moved 450+ miles away six years ago for a reason and all of our relationships improved as a result. But when we get together, a lot of the bad stuff comes right back. I have tried in the past to calm people down when things get testy or side-step potential triggers, but it doesn’t always work. Just now, I hung up the phone on them because my mom started screaming over the phone about how much she hates Christmas and this is awful for her, etc. etc.
When they come to our home, if I try to ask them to stick by any of my rules or wishes (such as not keeping lights on all night, turning the TV and etc. off at a reasonable hour because we’re trying to sleep, etc.) the response is typically “Don’t be such a bitch and stop threatening us/telling us what to do.”
Doesn’t matter that it’s my space, my family believes I have no right to dictate (or even simply ask) that they do/do not do something when they’re here.
I love my family and I try to overlook their shortcomings because I don’t want to cut them off. But Fiance is getting very fed up with their behaviour, and I’ve had to hold him back from laying into them (especially my mom) many times in the past. Now that we are engaged, I know it’s going to be even harder, but I am terrified that any confrontation with them on his part will lead to a grudge held forever. My mom is incredibly spiteful and she doesn’t accept even the tiniest criticism well. She flies off the handle easily —
We had a fight when I last visited home that consisted of her screaming in my face and threatening to hit me, flipping me off and telling me that she was ready to wash her hands of me and I could have my “perfect life” and fuck off.
I know it’s not right for her to act like this toward me. I think in many ways she is jealous because my life is happening the way she wishes her life had, and she takes it out on me. I don’t know. I’m sorry this is so long and I wouldn’t blame anyone for not reading it.
But I just don’t know what to do. I want to see my family, especially my youngest brother who feels more like my son than a brother (10 year age difference, I practically raised him growing up). I want things to be happy, peaceful and warm like they are when I visit my FI’s family. But I know unless we get family counseling or something, they probably never will be.
Does anyone have advice for me on how to handle them when they’re here? I don’t want it to be a disaster, but I don’t know how to avoid it. Being around my family, especially my mom, is like walking on eggshells. I’m absolutely DREADING the wedding because of this (though I hope having his family around will keep them in check).
Thank you in advance, and Merry Christmas!