How do you split up holidays in your family?

posted 3 years ago in Relationships
Post # 31
7171 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

Honestly, we don’t split it up fairly. It sucks, but now that I’m expecting I’ll 100% be putting my foot down and running the show. Sounds bitchy but in the 17 years Darling Husband and I have been together I’ve let his family run the show on Christmas and it’s coming to an end.

In the early years when we were really young we always spent holidays with our own families. My parents live 3 minutes away but DH’s parents are like 7.5 hrs away. We lived out of state for college and we’d each go home to our own families for Christmas.

Once we moved back to my hometown and bought our house we’d go to the IL’s for Christmas *every year*. I’m talking 10+ years of Christmas with them….and because they’re so far away it’s always a few days. About 5 years ago we started hosting Thanksgiving at our house and it’s been really nice. We have a mixture of my family and some of our friends some cover.

This past Christmas Darling Husband went up a couple days early to his parents, because he always cooks Christmas Eve dinner with his grandma for his dad’s side of the family. He spent Christmas morning with his mom, and left mid-morning to drive hom. Meanwhile at home I spent Christmas day preparing dinner for 10 people. Darling Husband walked in the door about 20 minutes before dinner was ready.

I love my ILs but they are incredibly selfish when it comes to visits. In the 9 years we’ve lived in our house his family has come to visit like 5 times. That’s it. Every time we say we’re going to start alternating holidays his mom backs out and finds a reason to not come.

Post # 32
413 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

My grandparents have hosted dinner on Christmas every year for 61 years and counting. It’s a non-negotiable thing, and Darling Husband knows it.

Thankfully, DH’s parents are pretty chill about holidays. They just want a nice dinner and to watch Dear Daughter open presents at some point around the holidays. They aren’t too picky about the exact date, so we usually see them sometime in the week between Christmas and New Years.

Post # 33
3875 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

View original reply
somethingblue222 :  This is a layered question because DH’s brother and SIL split holidays between family, so we tend to make different arrangements based on if they and our niece will be available. Last year, for example, Brother-In-Law and SIL and niece were not going to be here for Christmas, so we spent the morning and afternoon of Christmas Eve with my family and then met his remaining family for dinner. We then spent Christmas exclusively with my family. This year, due to Brother-In-Law and SIL being here for Christmas, we’ll probably split it to some degree differently. 

I guess a pro is that DH’s family isn’t overly about holidays in general, so if we can’t meet up on the day, it isn’t the end of the world. 

I have friends who trade off every year. Last year, they were in a different state for Thanksgiving, home for Christmas and this year they are home for Thanksgiving and in a different state for Christmas. 


Post # 34
428 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2017 - State Park

So far it’s been simple: my family gets Christmas Eve, his family gets Christmas Day, we either swap thanksgiving or host thanksgiving so both of our families are there. 

This will get tougher as we both now have jobs that require us to work Christmas Eve, so if it’s not a weekend, it won’t work. That will probably turn into celebrating the weekend nearest the holiday and inviting my dad to join Christmas with my inlaws. 

Neither of us could care less about extended family. No need to make the rounds at Aunt Cathy’s. I really highly recommend this even if you do care about your aunt… 5 or 6 christmases like I hear about is just so unnecessary. Liberate yourself. 

Post # 35
2153 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

We always host and just have everybody come to us. My parents live across the street and DHs mom & stepdad live about 30 mins away. Nobody else in my family knows how to cook a single thing, and my Mother-In-Law has big dogs that are basically totally untrained so nobody can ever (or would ever want to) go there. Both of our sisters are single, so they come solo.  We invite extended family over as well.

Post # 36
2004 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

We live in CA and both our families are on the east coast. We spend Thanksgiving with his family (it’s their “big one”) and then Thanksgiving weekend with my grandparents and family (grandparents live about an hour from his family). Christmas we spend with my family (my Jewish family loves Christmas) since his family doesn’t care as much, but then we’ll head to visit them for late December/New Years before heading back to CA. Those are the only holidays we really travel for/split between families.

Post # 37
925 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

one year his family one year mine, sometimes our families dont get together so we will go to whomever is hosting lol

Post # 38
1189 posts
Bumble bee

My FIs parents are divorced, and live far away from my parents. So we alternate years! My family always has big Christmases and Easters xo

Post # 39
216 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2017 - Sauk Valley Resort

Holidays are miserable for us. I’ve actually grown to hate them. Thanksgiving is usually lunch around 12 with my dad’s family, then drive 20 minutes to FMIL’s around 2, then drive 40 minutes to my mom’s family and then I had to be at work at 5pm and work through the night. Thankfully I’m not in retail anymore, so that will help this year, but I’m still dreading it.

Christmas eve, we spend with FI’s mom’s family, then head home. I miss out on opening presents with my siblings for this. Christmas morning, Fiance and I do presents at home alone, drive to my aunt’s for my dad’s family Christmas, stop by my parent’s house for gifts between my immediate family, go to FMIL’s at a very specific time to just barely catch both FSIL’s and their families, then drive out to my aunt’s for my mom’s family Christmas, BUT WAIT, WE’RE STILL NOT DONE! We then head back to FMIL’s to do our own Christmas with her. Then we finally head home. I hate it.

No one wants to give up anything and we both feel guilty, so this is how it is. We tried cutting out going to my parents, but my mom cried on the phone to me for an hour at 7am last Christmas. FI’s dad just passed away and he was sick for Christmas the last two years, so we tried to spend some extra time there at night after everything else was over. I feel like we don’t have time to enjoy any part of the day, and we miss out on a lot by trying to be everywhere.

Easter is usually lunch at my parent’s house, dinner at FMIL’s9

My family doesn’t do anything for my birthday, Future Mother-In-Law will usually do a cake and dinner for everyone on their birthday, so those are spent over there. Mother’s Day and Father’s Day aren’t really big with my family, so it’s mostly just a stop by and drop off a gift kinda thing. We spend most of the day with FI’s family for those.

We do our own thing for any minor holiday.

Post # 40
2705 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015 - St Peter\'s Church, East Maitland, and Bella Vista, Newcastle

Currently, we alternate Christmases between my parents and DH’s.  My parents are a 3 hour flight away and we usually fly out on Christmas Eve and back on about the 28th – I usually have to be back at work around the 29th.  If we go to my parents for Christmas, we’ll try and see DH’s parents either the weekend before or the weekend after.  If we go to DH’s parents (2 hours drive), we just Skype my family. This may change if/when we have kids though – not sure yet!

Post # 41
2039 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

holidays are rough, simply because both me and Darling Husband have jobs that arent typically closed on thanksgiving or christmas….. its been years since weve both been able to actually have a sit down and enjoy holiday, le sigh…. 

my parents live a few states away so we hardly get to spend actual holidays with them. We typically fit in a early thanksgiving lunch or christmas dinner before our work shifts. 

we almost always go up to see my parents the first week of december every year though, since my parents are use to us not coming up for actual christmas, they like to do all the christmas decorating (house, tree, etc) when were up there, so that we at least get to do some chirstmas type things. 

they plan on spending christmas in florida for the first time though this year, so ill get to have an actual family christmas for once. 

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