Gransnet forums



(23 Posts)
Lin1959 Tue 20-Nov-18 12:50:18

AIBU to not want to bother with Christmas this year? My 2 sons and daughter and their children all have their own plans, which I understand, they are all very busy and my daughter is working that day. My Husband suffers with illness and is not at all interested in Christmas, (It holds bad memories for him) but he has tolerated it every year as I am a traditionist and usually love this time of year. This year I am just not interested in putting up decorations and we have decided to treat the Christmas period as normal days, no extra food and no Christmas dinner. We will of course be buying the Family Presents as we don't want to spoil their Day. I have already been called a scrooge, which did upset me a bit. Last Christmas was awful, we bought loads of food and filled our freezer, but non of it got touched as my Husband was taken ill on Christmas Day and was rushed to hospital. I ended up throwing all the food from the fridge and spent a year getting through all the extras in the freezer. I said I am not going to be doing it again. My family never include us in their celebrations, as it is just the 2 of us again this year I am not doing it. Am I Being Unreasonable??

tanith Tue 20-Nov-18 12:57:51

If you both agree then have Christmas just how you like, although you might feel like doing a much simpler one as it gets nearer, don’t your family visit at all? I ask as I can’t think why you’d buy so much last year if it was just the two of you.

Nanny23 Tue 20-Nov-18 13:01:48

No not at all Lin 1959, your time is now your own and you should spend the day doing exactly what you want. We are in the same boat and last year did nothing at all, it was quite nice not to have any pressure to do something. This year, the same. As my husband says, "it's just one day" smile.

Telly Tue 20-Nov-18 13:12:07

No of course you are not being unreasonable. Please yourself, it is often an anti-climax. You can always change your mind if the shops are open until Xmas eve!

Lin1959 Tue 20-Nov-18 13:12:35

@tanith yes, last year we had my Husband's sister come to stay over Christmas, so I decided to make an effort with extra food. My own Family never visit, they are always too busy

oldbatty Tue 20-Nov-18 13:17:48

Try to pull back a bit and have a think. I find it a most challenging and unpleasant time of year ( childhood say no more)

I try to steer my way through going over the top and ignoring it.

If it was a family member who called you scrooge try to laugh it off and make a joke of it.

Please yourself, maybe put up some decorations in one room, choose something nice you both like to eat and invite family over for a brunch or something on the 27th or so?

It is actually possible to change your routine and survive!!!

MawBroon Tue 20-Nov-18 13:20:46

On another thread I described how the Christmas DH was in hospital in London was strangely enjoyable because everything was “ad hoc”
Smoked salmon sandwiches with him in hospital, a venison casserole at DD’s flat where I was “camping”, no fuss, no supermarket queues, no cards, no tree, no decorations, dog in kennels, but a time of being together with those of the family who could be there.
No DGCs at that point which perhaps made it easier.
When he came home in January I did a big family “non Christmas” meal which wasso much easier .
I would still say you should somehow have a “special” day fir the two of you - favourite (non -Christmassy) food and drink, favourite TV (or DVDs) and bear in mind that Christmas is what you make it.
I hope you will still see your family at some point and be able to enjoy their company.

sunseeker Tue 20-Nov-18 13:28:40

Since I have been on my own I have cut back on Christmas decorations, food etc. I do still put up some decorations (only one room) and will get a small turkey crown and perhaps a small box of sweets and a small pack of nuts.

I won't see anyone over Christmas and New Year so I just please myself. I don't think the OP is being unreasonable at all. If family are not going to be visiting why go to all that trouble if you don't want to.

janeainsworth Tue 20-Nov-18 13:40:32

Do none of your DCs ever invite you to spend any time at Christmas with them, Lin? You don’t say how near to you they live.
Is going to visit them a possibility?

jusnoneed Tue 20-Nov-18 13:53:50

In recent years, since boys have grown up and we no longer see the eldest or any of the grandkids, I treat it much like a Sunday. Cook a roast at dinner time, OH insists on turkey so I do that for him and something else (Lamb last year) for my son and I. I buy pressies for son and my Dad and that's as much fuss as I make. Other than cooking a piece of ham for boxing day cold lunch I don't worry about extra fancy foods etc.

rockgran Tue 20-Nov-18 14:26:51

Have the Christmas (or non Christmas) you want and if anyone calls you Scrooge just smile sweetly and say "Bah, Humbug!" (Then enjoy all the bargains in the shops after Christmas! )
I think Christmas should just be every four years like the Olympic games. Then we might appreciate it more.

travelsafar Tue 20-Nov-18 14:49:26

I too tend you hold off now we are older.For starters we can not eat what we did years ago, pastry gives heartburn and indigestion, chocolates are too sweet and a we are trying to eat healthy anyway. I do enjoy a small sherry and a christmas dinner with all the trimings though. We just enjoy what we can eat and chill out maybe talking about christmasses of old. Yes, it will be just me and my DH due to family issues, rifts, separations, distances etc but quite honestly when we shut the door on Xmas Eve close the curtains and settle down we will be absolutely fine.

Scribbles Tue 20-Nov-18 16:16:18

It's only Christmas if you're Christian; for anyone else, it's just a few days off to be spent however you wish to spend them. The OP makes no mention of any religious commitment so I'm assuming this is irrelevant to her (apologies if that is incorrect).

OH and I are not Christian and took the decision 20-odd years ago to eschew the whole 'celebratory' business. 25/26 December are just treated as a couple of additional Sundays and we have, at different times, used those days to spring clean the kitchen, paint the sitting room, plan holidays or simply chill out. No presents, no turkey & sprouts, no visits to or from relations, no extra shopping, no pressure: what's not to like?

Somebody always makes a "Scrooge" remark but those I care about know that I'm not so who cares? Our bank account is still in the black at the end of December, too and I do enjoy getting down to Lidl the day after for leftover Stollen at a knockdown price!

The OP and her OH should spend the season doing whatever they want to do. The world does not end if you don't have decorations or mince pies; it's much more important to be content with your choice.

ninathenana Tue 20-Nov-18 16:50:11

?I did it my way ?

Whatever suits you. Last year I had decided we wouldn't both with tree and decs in future.It didn't seem worth it for 3 adults and we never have visitors. I had planned turkey and trimmings but one box of fancy bics was the only extra and we were all happy with that.
As it happened we were invited to spend both days with friends which was lovely.
If it's just the two of you, then be glad you can please yourselves.
We have never spent Christmas with DGC they have always been with their father's family.

sodapop Tue 20-Nov-18 17:28:25

Nothing wrong with doing your own thing over Christmas Lin1959 if that's what you want. I do get the impression though that's its more of a reaction against family not including you in their plans.
Don't be resentful, choose your favourite foods, buy yourselves a treat for the day, in my case its new books and a bottle of Baileys. Then relax and enjoy a stress free day.

oldbatty Tue 20-Nov-18 17:32:55

Bravo Scribbles

Smileless2012 Tue 20-Nov-18 17:52:56

No you a not being unreasonable Lin. Estranged from youngest son and only GC and DS living in Aus. it's just me and Mr. S. this year as friends who were supposed to be coming have just cancelled.

We'll have loads of decs, inside and out because we love Christmas and that's what we want to do, so do what you want to do and I hope you manage to enjoy yourselvesflowers.

Luckygirl Tue 20-Nov-18 18:03:00

WE do put up some decorations and deck an artificial tree - mainly because we look after GC and their excitement when we get out the Christmas box is a joy. On the day itself we are usually at one of my DDs - she and her OH love a family celebration so they pull out all the stops.

If it were just the two of us at home, I doubt we would do much - but all the pre-Christmas singing that I am involved in is more important to me.

Sweetie222 Tue 20-Nov-18 20:21:16

Hi Lin

Excellent plan not to stress yourself doing christmassy things you don't want to, it's just a shame that you sound sad and guilty about it.

However, you and husband can still treat each other, Amazon is good if you can't get out, and Christmas dinner isn't so different from Sunday dinner, have a nice day.

Perhaps get a few bits in the freezer that you already like so that if you do have visitors you're able to make them welcome.

nanny2507 Tue 20-Nov-18 20:56:47

i will not be having a tree or decs this year. I didnt have one last year. However I am lucky enough to be going to my daughters. I did tell someone the other day that i will never put a tree up again until i found the decs that my kids made over the years as since moving they have been lost sad

nanny2507 Tue 20-Nov-18 20:58:29

and as an add on myself and hubs do not buy each other gifts as we cant afford to and the money that we would spend I would rather spend on my kids (ok ok adults now) and my GD

Nata Tue 27-Nov-18 14:18:17

Sorry to hear about your husband. You have decided already to treat to treat the Christmas period as normal day but you are still hesitating. Do you think that you will feel kinda left out the holiday? Me and my hubby, we stopped celebrating Christmas and New Year a few years ago and we are just fine! And don't worry, you are being absolutely reasonable. Put up your tree, it will make the mood. You can either buy family presents or make them with your own hands. Photo calendar creator is a good way to provide all your family with unique gifts, they will be touched.

Grammaretto Tue 27-Nov-18 15:06:34

One year we didn't do decorations , get food in etc because we were invited to our DS 400 miles away for a long weekend.
Soon after we set out, on Christmas Eve, the snow started and then the car broke down.
We eventually got towed to a garage where the car was patched up and after several hours we were able to limp home.DS was as disappointed as we were when we said we weren't going to come. He managed to invite the other GP so their day was happy and for us, after the initial blow we felt a great sense of peace. Returning home with no commitments, we could please ourselves.
I hope it works out well for you too.