Gransnet forums

Ask a gran

christmas with 2 sets of grandparents what is fair

(135 Posts)
annieg Wed 21-Nov-12 18:32:33

Our first grandchild who is now 5 mths old. The other grandparents want christmas to be at their house for a meal at 3 pm xmas day . I feel we are missing out on our grandchilds christmas, and they are taking over the day as we will not see him at our house until late evening. We will go round in morning to see him, but I feel 3 pm is taking up all the day and we will be missing out. Do I sound unreasonable , it is our daughter.

Stansgran Wed 21-Nov-12 18:34:49

Be French celebrate Xmas Eve with the baby and they can have Xmas day with the other GPs-they should have invited you in my opinion,

Anne58 Wed 21-Nov-12 18:38:47

This is always a tricky one, I remember having to do the alternating Christmas thing for quite a few years. I then switched to doing it at our house. I HATED Christmas at my MIL's after FIL died, Christmas lunch was eaten on laps so that no television was missed shock My mother & stepfather did a far more civilised affair (snob emoticon??)

However annieg , I do feel that a baby of only 5 months isn't going to get the whole Christmas thing, so perhaps you will get a much more rewarding time with him if he comes to you next year.

absentgrana Wed 21-Nov-12 18:39:14

annieg That you are mummy's parents doesn't trump the fact that the other grandparents are daddy's parents. Just enjoy whatever time you have together as a family and rejoice that your grandchild's other grandparents are just as loving as you are.

jO5 Wed 21-Nov-12 18:39:46

You don't sound unreasonable. This must be a bugbear for a lot of families.

Where does your daughter want to spend Xmas Day?

Couldn't you have them on Boxing Day?

grannyactivist Wed 21-Nov-12 18:42:58

Sorry annieg, as you will be seeing your grandchild in the morning and again in the evening I don't really see where the problem is. I have my grandson coming on Christmas eve and then his family are off to visit one of the other sets of grandparents for Christmas day and Boxing day. I'm delighted that I shall be able to spend some time with him, and happy that he'll get a good long spell with his other grandparents too.

crimson Wed 21-Nov-12 18:47:15

I think seeing him in the morning will be the best part of the day. He'll probably be asleep in the afternoon and his mum and dad will be shattered by then. You can then argue that it's your turn next Christmas and he'll be much more fun next year [even though all he'll want to do is play with the wrapping paper].

Dresden Wed 21-Nov-12 18:47:32

Presumably this means that Christmas will be at your house next year? Much nicer because your GC will be older, toddling around and very excited by all the decorations and presents. This year he will still be too young to enjoy it and will probably sleep through a lot of the celebrations in any case.

At least you will get to see him twice this Christmas Day, even though the main event is happening somewhere else. I would try and enjoy it as much as possible and start making plans for next

Ana Wed 21-Nov-12 18:49:32

It's the other way round for us - we have Christmas dinner here at around 3 with DD and the GDs (don't know whether ex-partner will be coming this year, he did last year), and if I'm honest, I feel a bit hard done by too!

The GDs are taken to the other grandparents' house in the morning, where other members of partner's family are already congregated, and by the time they come to us they're already over-excited and tired! By the time the meal's over there are only a couple of hours until they go home. So either way, compromises have to be made, and after all, it's only one day a year. smile

wisewoman Wed 21-Nov-12 18:50:16

annieg I hope you don't go down the route of feeling aggrieved and fighting over your grandchild at Christmas. . I spent so many Christmases trying to be "fair" and keeping everyone happy that Christmas was spoiled for me for years. I always invite my children and grandchildren for Christmas day but always make clear that I won't be upset if they have other plans. As long as we see each other over the Christmas season and get the pleasure of seeing our grandchildren with their presents and excitement, then the actual day doesn't matter a damn. Please don't turn it into a difficult time for your daughter. You will regret it, believe me. If you are seeing your grandchild morning and evening I think you are doing very well and many grandparents on here would envy you.

annieg Wed 21-Nov-12 18:56:02

I arranged afterwards to see GC in morning .I feel 3 pm is not allowing us to make arrangements before or afterwards , it is neither lunch or dinner but taking over Xmas day that is my greivance . There are 2 sets of GPs.I had to arrange our Christmas day around their 3 pm date .X

FlicketyB Wed 21-Nov-12 18:56:58

Why not discuss the issue with your D and SiL? I always find the best way to deal with all these situations is to sit down and talk about it.

Having said that I do rather agree with grannyactivist. To me the arrangement seems pretty good. Our GC live 200 miles away and we alternate at Christmas. One year they stay home with the local grandma and the next year they come and stay with us. On non Christmas years we visit in December to deliver presents and they come down to us on 27th December. Of course we would love to spend every Christmas with them but it takes two to make a bargain, or a GC and that means two families as well as two parents and one of the first things we teach our children is how to share, so it is a chance to put what we teach into practice.

Anne58 Wed 21-Nov-12 18:57:01

She's right you know!

Greatnan Wed 21-Nov-12 18:57:12

I have to confess to cringing when I hear grandparents competing for their family's company, on Christmas Day or any other time. I think you are very lucky to be seeing your grandchild at all, some of us would give anything for such a privilege. Why make the day difficult for your daughter - just go along with whatever she has managed to plan. The baby is far too young to care what day it is. Surely, our first concern is the happiness of our children and grandchildren, not our own place in the pecking order.

jeni Wed 21-Nov-12 19:02:53

I go away to stop any such problem

jO5 Wed 21-Nov-12 19:06:29

I prefer to see my grandsons on Boxing Day. Then they stay for the rest of the week. But Xmas Day needs to be fairly quiet and civillised They have a perfectly nice Xmas Day at their own house, and the other GPs spend the day there. That's fine with me. smile

Ariadne Wed 21-Nov-12 19:06:38

We had always done Xmas Eve as the grown ups' party (dates from my childhood as an only child when the grown ups went to the pub..) with whoever was available - at our house, theirs, whatever. But it isn't immovable, and neither is Xmas Day. This is the first time we have ever been near enough to any of our children not to have to travel over 200 miles or so on Xmas Day! Xmas Eve now may be the two of us - so what? wine wine (Champagne even)

But we get on fine with the in laws (apart from one set who are another story but have distanced themselves dramatically) and are happy to share, as are they.

As some of you know, we have two newly adopted DGs and feel very strongly that the new parents should have their first Xmas Eve and morning alone with their new family; I think they appreciate that. Mind you, I can't wait for Boxing Day!) but Xmas Day with my DD and family just down the road is the most lovely thing I can imagine.

DG2's birthday is 28th December so we'll head there last.

My in laws lived abroad and we could never make it over to them (money!) and I do have guilt about that. Wonder if we tried hard enough? Ah well.....

Mishap Wed 21-Nov-12 19:07:21

annieg - we have a similar situation each year as both sets of grandparents live failry near my DD and family. BUT.......I think it is hugely important not to get hungup on Christmas Day itself - the important thing is that you and your family have some fun together and this can happen just as well on the day before or the day after. Sometimes it is better to stagger the celebrations so that the little ones do not get too over-excited.

We have another DD nearby too and all her OH's family to be taken into consideration. I always say to them not to try and get around everyone - it is just not easible. One year they had 3 Christmas meals!! - sounds like the Vicar of Dibley!

I know that between my 3 DDs they will make sure that we see some of the family and GC on the day and that is fine.

Seriously - don't get hung-up on it - it is just not worth it and will backfire in the long term.

jO5 Wed 21-Nov-12 19:08:02

Does Christmas really finish for anyone at midnight on Christmas Day.

I would feel cheated. You need at least three days.

Ariadne Wed 21-Nov-12 19:16:26

Oh yes, Jingl! I'd say about five! X

Nonu Wed 21-Nov-12 19:30:28

Oh my , I aM LUCKY as they always seem to want to spend it with us .

I agree with wisewoman.

Certyainly don"t feel slighted by any of it . If push comes to shove we love being on our own .

Different strokes though . Certainly not worth falling out about .

Having said that I am on a "high" as off to Bournville tommorrow to see DD, SIL and grandnips . Beyond excited smile

Ella46 Wed 21-Nov-12 19:36:52

As long as everyone's happy, I don;'t mind where they are or where I

Anne58 Wed 21-Nov-12 19:41:47

My comment up there (she's right you know) was directed at wisewoman by the way!

janeainsworth Wed 21-Nov-12 19:42:57

annieg The baby will probably be asleep at 3pm.
Count your blessings - it's only a day after all.
Two of my DGCs live in the States and the other one two hundred miles away.

Ariadne Wed 21-Nov-12 19:45:43

Ah, jane I do indeed count them! Thank you.