Holidays and Family Stress

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-22-2006
Holidays and Family Stress
19
Tue, 12-21-2010 - 3:17pm

I know I'm not alone!!!

So every year my family, whom I have no contact with nor want to, go over to my gma's house.

My mother and brothers, whom I am close with, know that I do not want to have contact with my outside family.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-24-2004
Tue, 12-21-2010 - 5:31pm

(((HUGS))) Tell your mom it's your holiday too. Everyone seems to think us young people ought to be willing to "give up" a holiday for the sake of the older generation. I have had this problem too, but thankfully, it's not a problem for me anymore. I used to have a step monster and we used to alternate holidays between my dad and mum. Even my mum used to push us in that direction on the alternate years (when it's "their turn" to have the "kids").

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-22-2006
Tue, 12-21-2010 - 6:14pm
good point and thanks. Sometimes she's like this big black hole, will suck you into her insane reasoning. I feel hurt and angered. How can a mom who supposedly loves you put you thru this? I know that she's feeling pressure from her family and has her own guilt issues with her mom. So I'm going to try to tackle it that way. Appeal to her feelings. I don't want to hurt her, but jeez, I also don't want to hurt myself!!
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2007
Tue, 12-21-2010 - 6:39pm
Dear, If you're an adult, you don't have to give a reason. Some people feed off of you explaining why you don't want to go. It's like lifes blood for them. If I don't want to do something the worst thing someone can do is to keep after me about it. That's a sure fire way to make sure I will not be there. If ask again, just politely say no then turn and leave, got to the bathroom, get a drink, make a phone call. The more you pratice saying "NO" the more people will believe you.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-11-2008
Tue, 12-21-2010 - 8:46pm

That's right. You don't owe anybody an explanation. I tell my family "because I don't WANT to! End of story!"

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2005
Tue, 12-21-2010 - 11:01pm

Quick question - do you not want to see gma or just the extended family that ends up there?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-22-2006
Wed, 12-22-2010 - 3:50pm
oh trust me, I have no problem saying no. The problem really lies in my mother and her inability to say no. The family asks her where I am, and she responds, oh, she'll be here soon! No matter how many times I tell my mom no, she just doesn't get it. So since no doesn't work, she then resorts to guilt trips. Honestly, my real problem here is with my mother.
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-22-2006
Wed, 12-22-2010 - 3:51pm
I'm supposed to have a "talk" with my mother tomorrow - I don't think it's going to go over to well. I mean, what do you do when it's someone close to you, like your mother, who refuses to acknowledge what you are saying??
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-22-2006
Wed, 12-22-2010 - 3:56pm
Hi, I do not want to see gma or extended family. Without going into too much detail, my gma has been nonexistent in my life, and is really quite a mean person, was that way when she was young and now is just nasty now that she's old. My extended family is equally awful.

A couple of years ago I made the decision to cut them out of my life, and embrace the family members I love - my mom and brothers. My brothers are also struggling with the same exact thing, but they are currently guilted into the extended family thing - I'm the oldest.

I do try to create a special "holiday" for just us. For example, tomorrow night we are having our xmas dinner. I think my mom is torn between her guilt and rough relationship with her own mom, and what's important to me. The funny thing is, she has an awful relationship with her own mom. But she chooses to pretend that we are one big happy family, when that is so not true.

My family doesn't bother ever getting together during the year, the holiday is it.

I have said no to gma and extended family, it was hard at first, but really the hard part is with my own mom who refuses to get it!
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-23-2003
Wed, 12-22-2010 - 4:33pm

So really you need a way to deal with the guilt trips? Personally I respond with silence and then a subject change, or I make fun of the person and guilt trip and laugh like it's all a big joke. Responding seriously just convinces the other person that there is a chance you might cave in. You can also respond with "I'm not going to discuss this with you" and repeat that over and over as needed.

http://www.paganedge.com/
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-22-2006
Wed, 12-22-2010 - 6:20pm
I guess so - I need to know how to respond to her guilt trips. I feel like I've tried everything, from talking rationally, to the very firm conversation we had the other day. But that seems to just make it go on and on. She wants to know "whhyyyy" and then she comes up with arguments as to why I should go to gmas. Or tries to invalidate how I feel about the other extended members. Or she responds with, well, they really want to see you. Of course non of these people have bothered to reach out to me.

So I'm thinking maybe I am to that point - "I am not going to discuss this with you".

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