(Closed) How to divide up holidays when you don’t like inlaws

posted 4 years ago in Family
Post # 31
170 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2020 - La Jolla, CA

We do thanksgiving with FIs family and Christmas with mine. It’s 3 hrs to his family and 2 in the opposite direction to mine. The highway that we take to get to his family is not uncommon to get closed due to snow in December and January, so we don’t even take the chance of getting stuck in December. So far, it’s worked out. 

Post # 32
705 posts
Busy bee

they want thanksgiving, christmas eve and christmas? sounds a little much to me!

My husband and I moved far away from all family so didn’t take long before everyone just got calls on the holidays. My hat goes off to anyone trying to work out the holidays among the relatives. My grandparents worked this out by having a ‘family holiday’ on a day that wasn’t the day of so all households could have their own traditions.  By having it another day that made it much more likely that everyone could attend, no conflicts. That’s my experience.

Post # 33
1613 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

I think you and Dh need to find a compromise that works for you.  We live close to everyone and rotate precisely,  like thanksgiving day,  with one,  black Friday with another,  Christmas Eve with one,  Christmas day with another. Dh and i already decided that after we have kids,  we’ll spend more of Christmas day as a family at home and not leave the house until the afternoon.

My sister lives in another state and she also rotates.

 Just remember that you and Dh are also a family and you deserve a chance to host or have a holiday with just the2 of you if that’s of interest.  My sister got to have her first Christmas spent at home with just her husband and the kids because it was her in laws year and they were visiting their other son outside of the country.  My sister said it was ones of her fav Christmases because they were able to melt thrust own traditions and focus entirely on their family.  They are still planning to going back to rotating,  but might be adding a stay at home Christmas to the rotation lol. 

Post # 34
90 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: November 2017

Why do they get Thanksgiving and Christmas? We split it up and switch off but we live closer to my family and my family parties are usually longer so the years we go to dh we actually can make it to my family’s for dessert. Except Mother and Father’s Day, I refuse to split those and we both just go to our own side for those. 

Post # 35
451 posts
Helper bee

Did you spend thanksgiving and Christmas with your parents last year? Maybe that’s why they want both this year. Either way, you gotta take turns. 

Post # 36
1829 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

we alternate holidays, my family is scattered all over the US and west coast, so probably every other year to every two years i get to spend actual holidays with them. Plus it can be hard as both D.H. and I work jobs that are typically open on the holidays or the day after/before. We havent done a big thanksgiving in years, because of the amount of hours we work that week. Christmas is super difficult for me though, my family too has a lot of traditions that i adore, and D.H. family has none, as they have 3 grandkids who tend to control every aspect of christmas. 

but its about compromise, do i enjoy waiting all christmas day just to watch three kids tear through presents late christmas night and then go home and thats it, no. But it is what it is.  

Post # 37
1423 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2018

I’d have to ask how bad your relationship with your in laws is because that determines whether you spend any time with them at all. If it’s that bad then your husband needs to have your back but if it’s just a matter of just them wanting you guys selfishly all to themselves then compromises can be made ie rotating holidays & sucking it up. 

If it’s the latter like my husbands family, they are toxic and we have to keep creating boundaries that they love to break ie; guilt tripping, manipulation, exclusion etc. My father is like this too (my parents are divorced) and if they push too hard they gets ‘black-holed’ (the person(s) can do all that they want but get nothing in return,they initiate all the contact and you ‘gray rock’ them in return [make small talk/limited contact that does not contain personal info/go out of your way;you can’t be goaded into confrontation]-rinse repeat) 

our plan is to have our own holidays/host so that we can control the situation if it gets bad. If we go to them the plan is that we make an appearance and then leave. That’s easier when everyone lives closer but can still be done like if you go to them,then stay at a hotel vs staying with them etc. But again this is all dependent on how bad your relationship with them is actually. If it’s anything like mine I’d encourage you to look at the DWIL board on babycenter. Goodluck and hope everything works out for the best 🙂

Post # 38
2144 posts
Buzzing bee

No, the inlaws don’t get a monopoly on the holidays. You need to rotate them.


Post # 39
1419 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

We are not married yet but we have been together for 9 years this Sept. Our families are 4.5 hours apart with us living almost exactly half way between them. 

His family is Catholic and are quite traditional about Christmas.  They trim the tree at his parent’s house Christmas eve followed by midnight mass.  First thing Christmas morning they exchange gifts followed by caroling at a retirement home with their church group. Then back to the house for Christmas dinner. 

My family is not at all traditional.  My parents are divorced and so I and my siblings, and our families, always split Christmas eve and Christmas day between our parents/step parents.  We exchange gifts, share a meal, play cards or board games, or watch a movie.  We laugh a lot and just enjoy each others company.   

The first 2 holiday seasons we were together we went our separate ways, him to his family, me to mine.  Starting the third year we began splitting the holidays, one year thanksgiving to his and Christmas to mine, then switch the next year. 

Luckily I am with a man who is not so selfish and self-centered as to believe that just because my family doesn’t have long standing “special traditions” that its not important to spend time with them. 

Post # 40
370 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

Your feelings towards his family should not play a part in where you spend the holidays.  He deserves to spend Christmas with his family if he wants to and you need to suck it up unfortunately (he does the same for you).  I don’t think his family should get ALL the holidays though.  Since your family got Christmas last year then you should spend Christmas with his family this year and your family can have Thanksgiving.  That’s the type of compromise I would make.

Post # 41
5641 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 2009 - New York, NY

It is very simple: you alternate.  It’s lovely that you hold your family’s traditions sacred, but when you married, you created a new family, where what your husband holds dear is as important.  Talk to him and define how you will work this, treating both families equally.

Post # 42
595 posts
Busy bee

I don’t care to go to holidays with my future in laws either as some of them are not very nice people to put it lightly, but it’s just part of the deal with having a partner so I do it anyway. 

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