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Should I stay or should I go (now)?

Normally we see family for Christmas: we drive 230 miles to see my MIL for Christmas Eve. After dinner & presents on Christmas Eve, we then drive 190 miles to my parents (usually arriving around 1 AM) so that our kids can wake up Christmas morning there. After spending a day or two there, we high-tail it back home so that DH and I can get back to work. We've been doing this for over 10 years now.

Recently, DH has been ill, we're having problems with my oldest son (physically aggressive at school and general "I'm going to be a teenager soon" crap), my work has been super-stressful and we're dealing with some major financial snafus. I've got little in the way of Christmas spirit (no decorations up, no cookies made, no cards made out yet - although we are going to get a tree today). Add to this, there is going to be lots of family drama to deal with when we get to my parents.

So the question(s): How justified do you think I would be to stay home for the holidays? Do you think it would be acceptable to go to my MIL's for Christmas Eve and skip my parents (shorten the trip by about 1/2 and avoid the drama) or should we suck this up and still have the family tradition and let the kids enjoy the cousins and extended family?

Answer Question

Asked by Dr.Donna at 9:49 AM on Dec. 18, 2010 in Holidays

Level 26 (26,309 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • Say home if that's what you want!! I would hope family would understand that for 1 year you are going to do what's easiest for you and your family instead of spending the holiday running around like crazy!! The stress of all that running around can really take the fun out of the holidays. Talk to your hubby and kids and see what they think.


    Answer by skittles1108 at 9:53 AM on Dec. 18, 2010

  • Do whatever YOU and your family want. Sometimes new traditions are nice.

    Answer by BluDog at 9:55 AM on Dec. 18, 2010

  • Your description exhausts me! What if you made plans to see some of the family the weekend of New Year's? Tell everyone that you are doing an "at home" Christmas this year. That you all need time at home for some of the reasons you mentioned in your question. You are totally justified to do the holiday however you need to for your family. We always stayed home once we had children. We wanted them to wake up in their own home and enjoy a lazy Christmas morning. We usually traveled the weekend before to my husband's parents and my parents were close enough to come to our house in the afternoon on Christmas day. Do what works for you and realize that, although you might not make everyone happy, it only matters what makes you and your immedite family happy. Best wishes.

    Answer by elizabr at 9:59 AM on Dec. 18, 2010

  • Routine is very important to children. I think you should follow your regular tradition. You will probably cause more drama by skipping it than you will be going.

    Answer by bseastrand at 10:04 AM on Dec. 18, 2010

  • I think if you want to stay home do it, it ccould be nice for the kids to just be able to relax and play with their new presents, or go to your in laws and maybe plan to go just to your parents next year. That wya they wont be too disapointed. Your regualr Christmas sounds exhasusting. We are staying home for the first time this year, and I am so excited, it will be so much more peacful and relaxing. We would have to drive 6 hours all together christmas day, so we decided to just take it easy.

    Answer by -LovingMamma- at 10:10 AM on Dec. 18, 2010

  • I don't know, have you asked the kids about it, would it bother them to just stay home period and not see the rest of the family? If it wouldn't I'd not go anywhere at all. I think 10 yrs is quite a long time for you to drag your family away form your home for Christmas and you shouldn't feel a bit gulity about staying home and trying to enjoy yourself there.

    Answer by MyAngel003 at 12:06 PM on Dec. 18, 2010

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