Post # 1
First off, let me say that I LOVE Christmas. I am the Christmas queen, going all out with the decorating, music, baking, shopping…
This will be my Darling Husband and I’s first Christmas as a married couple. In previous years, we had spent the actual day apart (my family lives in town, his lives a few hours away). That worked fine for us as we see each other 364 days of the year and celebrated when he returned home.
Now that we’re married, Darling Husband feels that we should spend the holiday together, and I agree. The part I’m having a hard time accepting is that we will be spending it this year with his extended family, across the country. Logically I know that alternating years is the fairest and best way, but emotionally I’m still having a hard time. My family has a billion Crristmas traditions starting from the 23rd-27th, and I will miss them all.
Every time I think about Christmas, I cry. Not because his family isn’t wonderful, but because I am so close to my family and can’t imagine missing everything. I know it’s just one day, but the thought of decorating or baking or shopping makes me teary. Darling Husband tries to understand but I don’t think he really gets why I’m so emotional about it. I don’t want to be a Debbie Downer at Christmas, so I’m trying to keep my spirits high but it’s honestly hard.
I feel like a crazy lady – it’s just one day, and I’m so lucky to have such great healthy, happy families who love us and be married to the man I love. Is anyone else feeling this way (or am I in fact, crazy?)
Post # 3
I completely, 100 percent understand what you’re saying and I don’t think you’re crazy at all! I also LOVE Christmas (and pretty much every holiday) and I’m VERY close to my family. I’m not married yet, still engaged, but I’m already thinking very apprehensively about what we will be doing for the holidays in the future. I will want to spend them with my husband, but I also know that I would be SO sad to spend them away from my family. And I know that my parents would be really sad! It’s a really tough thing to get used to, I guess. Right now my FI’s parents live far overseas so we’ll probably just be at my parents’ house for the next couple of years, but once they move back it’s going to be difficult. His parents used to live 30 min from mine which was great, but they are planning on moving to a different state in the U.S. when they return.
How far is your family from his? Could you visit them one after another during the Christmas season so you can go to both? Maybe you’ll alternate which years you are at each house actually on Christmas day, but you’ll at least get to see family near Christmas. That’s what I’m hoping to do at this point.
Post # 4
This is my first Christmas away from home too. You’re not alone! And like you, our celebrations last more than one day (generally 24th-26th). I know my family Christmas has its quirky tradtions and, like you, I’m sad that I wont be able to partcipate.
Last year we spent it apart, this year with my mum’s permission (for some reason I just had to have her blessing) we are spending it with his brother (and the rest of SO’s family).
Solution to me missing Christmas is: spending Christmas eve with my family, waking up on Christmas day with them then driving to SO’s brothers after breakfast (luckily they’re only 40minutes drive away). I will still miss a ton but I’m not missing everything. The one thing I’m going to miss the most is the Queen’s speech (something I have watched every year since the year dot), and SO’s brother doesn’t own a TV so I really wont be able to watch it; this is freaking me out, and making me really upset. SO, doesn’t get it.
Alternating is the fairest way, true; but are there small traditions you can introduce to your DHs family?
My cousins do this: Christmas day with one set of parents, Boxing day with the other. 4 hour or so drive. Is this a possibility? (I know you say they’re a long way away though).
I really feel for you, and I totally know how you feel. ((BIG HUGS))
Post # 5
I’m lucky that we live about a half hour away from both sets of parents, so it’s totally feasible to see both. I’ve given up some traditions, like Christmas Eve with my family because that is when his celebrates, but I actually haven’t seen that as a sad thing at all – I’m excited by it because now I am really a part of his family and I want to get to know their traditions so I can incorporate both of them when we have children, it’s just exciting that we’re now our own family and doing things like a married couple =)
Post # 6
Can you spend Christmas Eve with one family and Christmas Day with the other? Or Christmas Day with one? and the weekend with the other? Several years ago, I spent Christmas with my husband’s family (and missed Christmas with my family that year.) I brought favorite recipes with me, went grocery shopping and made our favorite cookies and pie at my FIL’s house. Maybe there is a tradition or two that you can “bring along” with you?
Post # 7
We alternate years and last year was my first Christmas away from my family. Christmas at my house is a very big deal…at his, not so much. It was really difficult for me because not only was it “not my Christmas” but his mom also hates the holiday so while there’s a tree and gifts, the days are lacking in the joy, baking, singing, walks in snow traditions that are part of my family Christmas. The lack of joy was really really obvious to me. It was really difficult and I did cry. 🙁
This is what helped me: I took a couple of things to eat and share that are part of my family’s Christmas. My Mother-In-Law (who is a great person, just not so great at this time of year) doesn’t like people helping in the kitchen, so I made sure all was made before hand. I listened to Christmas carols as much as I could in the lead up so that I wasn’t too disapointed when very little were listened to at my in law’s house. My Darling Husband took walks with me. My parents planned a “my family” Christmas in January, so that was nice to look forward to.
The biggest thing for me was seeing where my Darling Husband was coming from when he was shocked at our Christmas. Understanding that and getting why he’s a bit more…understated around the holidays, was really good for us as a couple.
All of this is to say that it’s going to be hard and that’s okay. Transplant some of your traditions to his family and try to go in with the attitude that, yes it’s going to be different, but it’s going to be fun in it’s own way.
Post # 8
Thank you everyone for your replies….it made me cry (again, lol) knowing that other people are going through the same thing or feel the same way. While I am thrilled to spend Christmas with my husband for the first time, a little bit of me is sad that I’m growing up I suppose.
Also, like other posters mentionted, Christmas isn’t as big in his family so it will have a different feel. We will be travelling by plane across the country so we won’t be able to do Christmas Eve with my family, but my mom has been talking about having a “Christmas Part 2” when we get back on the 29th. I hope as the holiday season grows closer, I can let all this sadness go and just truly be happy. Knowing I’m not crazy and that others feel the same way has already helped 🙂 Thank you!
Post # 9
Be thankful that you get to spend Christmas with family – his or yours – I live across the country from my familyl and DH’s family and we will be spending Christmas alone this year.
Like you, I cry when I think about Christmas, but I have a hard time feeling sorry for you or empathizing with you at all. I would love to fly to spend Christmas with any member of family – mine or his. At least you get to fly back home and you’re around your family for the rest of the holiday season. A few days shouldn’t matter.
Sorry if this is rude, but I think you need to be a little more thankful for this opportunity.
Post # 10
By your logic, there are many shut-ins and people with no family at all that would say you should feel thankful to have the opportunity to spend the holiday with your Darling Husband.
I’m not at all looking for sympathy or for you to ‘feel sorry’ for me…I was simply writing how I was feeling and wondering if there was anyone else who felt the same way or was going through a similar experience. I can empathize with you; being far away from family around the holidays is very difficult. I hope you and Darling Husband have a wonderful Christmas together, are able to find some holiday cheer, and can see both of your respective families very soon.
Post # 11
I am thankful – I never said that I wasn’t. I just said that you should be thankful that you’re getting to see any family at all for Christmas and you’re going back home to your family a FEW days after Christmas…
Post # 12
This will be my first Christmas away from my family, too. I’ll wake up alone at my apartment, and it makes me cry to think about it. I’ll get to spend the day with my FI’s family, but they don’t have many traditions and it makes me so sad. Thankfully technology will allow me to Skype with my family for a while when they are all together. Don’t feel bad about all the tears. I cry when I think about Christmas too.