HOLIDAY FAMILY CHALLENGES: Dealing with family you don't want to deal with in a healthful and proactive manner

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Nov 26, 2014 5:52 PM GMT
    Hey guys, Happy Thanksgiving (for those in the U.S.)

    Had a phone call from a friend of mine who wanted my advice on dealing with aging parents who don't like his career (he's a banker) or his wife (who they think is tacky). The wife doesn't want to go to Thanksgiving with him and be uncomfortable. He doesn't want his kids uncomfortable, but wanted to do what was right for everybody.

    What a pain in the ass this time of year can be for many people. I suggested that he spend the holiday with his immediate family, have dinner with his wife, have a great time with his children and that (he) go and see his parents over the weekend. He did tell me he has siblings who can be with his parents for Thanksgiving proper, but he still wasn't sure. I felt it was important for him to establish basic time for his own family and still see family members.. if not Thanksgiving, then certainly Christmas.
    Don't let parents or others dictate life.

    I have gone through a few semi challenging holidays and I've always thought it good to be positive and proactive if you can, then depart. If you have family members that are negative, limit your exposure to them. Having some huge blow up on a holiday isn't the best plan. I'd rather spend it alone than deal with a bunch of problems, fortunately I haven't had to do that and am looking forward to a nice Thanksgiving tomorrow with several family members.

    Do you have any "holiday" problems with family and how have you learned to deal with it in as positive a way as possible. There may be others here, reading this that might appreciate hearing some positive stories......
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 27, 2014 1:19 AM GMT
    Just say NO.

    I had to sit thru 120,00 boring irritating parties, occasions , wedding and Holidays as a child.

    The day I turned 18 the tables turned.

    Just because We share some DNA doesn't mean I have sit in your overly-heated, pretentiously decorated house and make polite conversation.

    A HOLIDAY is meant to be ENJOYED not ENDURED.

    My true family is not related to Me at all genetically

    But We are very much a FAMILY

    The relatives can eat crow and throw knives at each other for all I care...
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    Nov 27, 2014 1:43 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidHey guys, Happy Thanksgiving (for those in the U.S.)

    Had a phone call from a friend of mine who wanted my advice on dealing with aging parents who don't like his career (he's a banker) or his wife (who they think is tacky). The wife doesn't want to go to Thanksgiving with him and be uncomfortable. He doesn't want his kids uncomfortable, but wanted to do what was right for everybody.

    What a pain in the ass this time of year can be for many people. I suggested that he spend the holiday with his immediate family, have dinner with his wife, have a great time with his children and that (he) go and see his parents over the weekend. He did tell me he has siblings who can be with his parents for Thanksgiving proper, but he still wasn't sure. I felt it was important for him to establish basic time for his own family and still see family members. If not Thanksgiving, then certainly Christmas.

    Don't let parents or others dictate life.

    First, Happy Thanksgiving to you! Second, I endorse your proposed approach as stated above, although I don't know the travel distances involved. If your friend can visit his parents over the weekend, fine, great compromise. Better if the siblings can be there Thanksgiving Day. Let's just hope the Will doesn't get rewritten as a result. LOL!

    Some observations: his parents object to him being a banker? Is he like a window teller? What DO they consider acceptable?

    Although I must note, my own parents were horrified when I joined the Army. It wasn't until I was promoted to Major that my late Father finally started to become more accepting, said he finally assumed I was serious about this career choice, and by Lt. Colonel he conceded the point. Perhaps it'll change when your friend becomes a Senior VP. Maybe some motivation for him.

    The wife being thought tacky I can't address. Although I have run into in-law resistance myself in the past. I just ignore it, smile and do my duty. I'm generally immune to it, makes for a good anecdotal story afterwards. Thank gawd my current husband's family is very accepting, I'm very fortunate.

    So that I have more positive stories than negative. Making me look forward to family holiday visits. And in our community that means the euphemistic gay "family" as well as the biological and in-law one.
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    Nov 27, 2014 2:39 AM GMT
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Nov 27, 2014 3:09 AM GMT
    Cash saidJust say NO.

    I had to sit thru 120,00 boring irritating parties, occasions , wedding and Holidays as a child.

    The day I turned 18 the tables turned.

    The relatives can eat crow and throw knives at each other for all I care...


    If they "throw knives" at Thanksgiving, what happens at Christmas?

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    Nov 27, 2014 3:18 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan said
    Cash saidJust say NO.

    I had to sit thru 120,00 boring irritating parties, occasions , wedding and Holidays as a child.

    The day I turned 18 the tables turned.

    The relatives can eat crow and throw knives at each other for all I care...


    If they "throw knives" at Thanksgiving, what happens at Christmas?

    icon_eek.gif

    icon_lol.gif


    Oh...do You remember that scene from Dynasty when Amanda Married Prinnce Michael?

    And then everyone got shot....

    It ended Ali MaGraw's career

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    Nov 27, 2014 3:20 AM GMT
    Never feel you have to attend something you don't want to. I do believe there are some events you 'should' attend, but you will know when and where to show up. icon_cool.gif
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    Nov 27, 2014 3:26 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan said
    Cash saidJust say NO.

    I had to sit thru 120,00 boring irritating parties, occasions , wedding and Holidays as a child.

    The day I turned 18 the tables turned.

    The relatives can eat crow and throw knives at each other for all I care...


    If they "throw knives" at Thanksgiving, what happens at Christmas?

    icon_eek.gif

    icon_lol.gif


    The women get furs and important earrings

    The men get, a car or a rare book.

    The mistresses get condos in medium grade neighborhoods

    The kids get Anything they want as long as they don't talk about the mistress...
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Nov 27, 2014 4:11 AM GMT
    I moved to the other side of the country.
    It's very peaceful.

    People voluntarily put themselves through torture by spending time with people they cannot stand, for the sole reason that they're family. Guess what ? You don't have to.

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    Nov 27, 2014 7:10 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan said
    Don't let parents or others dictate life.

    That's a great rule.

    My parents have passed on, but I had not had Thanksgiving with them since early grad school, when I was still nearby. They had their life, and I had mine. Would visit, but never at Thanksgiving or Christmas - who wants to travel cross country at that time, anyway? Since living in SF, I have always had friends to share thanksgiving dinner with - they are my real family.

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Nov 27, 2014 1:41 PM GMT
    HikerSkier said
    HndsmKansan said
    Don't let parents or others dictate life.

    That's a great rule.

    My parents have passed on, but I had not had Thanksgiving with them since early grad school, when I was still nearby. They had their life, and I had mine. Would visit, but never at Thanksgiving or Christmas - who wants to travel cross country at that time, anyway? Since living in SF, I have always had friends to share thanksgiving dinner with - they are my real family.



    Very nicely said! Hope everybody can enjoy a great day today!
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    Nov 27, 2014 2:24 PM GMT




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  • SilverRRCloud

    Posts: 872

    Nov 27, 2014 3:16 PM GMT
    My family thought that permanently entertaining other people was their first and foremost duty.icon_lol.gifAll year long...

    Their reasons ranged from being purely utilitarian to genuinely altruistic. Yet, no matter which home we resided at any time, I felt that I was living in a fancy regional train station with people showing up at all the times for all kinds of functions.

    A month before I turned 18, and got a place of my own, this seemingly endless procession of people through my daily life stopped dead in its tracks. I embraced the Mediterranean attitude of meeting people out there in the town for drinks, meals and socializing but keeping my home to myself and my private needs. I still subscribe to this MO, and am very happy with it.

    Over the time, everyone agreed that I neither liked entertaining at any of my homes nor did I like being entertained at other people's places.

    Putting some healthy distance helps a lot over the timeicon_smile.gif

    SC



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    Nov 27, 2014 3:34 PM GMT
    The holidays are intended to be a time when families join together, putting aside their differences.

    In that spirit this morning en route to the groomer BOTH my dogs decided to ride shotgun.

    9rimtw.jpg
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    Nov 27, 2014 3:47 PM GMT
    eagermuscle saidThe holidays are intended to be a time when families join together, putting aside their differences.

    In that spirit this morning en route to the groomer BOTH my dogs decided to ride shotgun.

    9rimtw.jpg


    You see, that's the way I want MY hair....
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    Nov 27, 2014 4:39 PM GMT
    Webster666 saidI moved to the other side of the country.
    It's very peaceful.

    People voluntarily put themselves through torture by spending time with people they cannot stand, for the sole reason that they're family. Guess what ? You don't have to.


    Ouch! That's bit harsh. There are people who do like their family.
  • LEANDRO_NJ

    Posts: 1114

    Nov 27, 2014 5:19 PM GMT
    Contrary to the family bashing on here!? I am so blessed to have a wonderful relationship with mine! Thanksgiving had always being a very peaceful, fun, and accepting part of my life with my blood family! so Happy Thanksgiving to those who enjoy spending it with them!
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Nov 27, 2014 6:43 PM GMT
    LEANDRO_NJ saidContrary to the family bashing on here!? I am so blessed to have a wonderful relationship with mine! Thanksgiving had always being a very peaceful, fun, and accepting part of my life with my blood family! so Happy Thanksgiving to those who enjoy spending it with them!


    Not meant to be "family bashing" in any way... mine is largely positive, especially with parents. Most of my holidays have been excellent (at a minimum).... but the reality is, it isn't that way for many.



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    Nov 27, 2014 6:52 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan said
    LEANDRO_NJ saidContrary to the family bashing on here!? I am so blessed to have a wonderful relationship with mine! Thanksgiving had always being a very peaceful, fun, and accepting part of my life with my blood family! so Happy Thanksgiving to those who enjoy spending it with them!


    Not meant to be "family bashing" in any way... mine is largely positive, especially with parents. Most of my holidays have been excellent (at a minimum).... but the reality is, it isn't that way for many.





    My family is completely insane.

    They are 3 steps from being a circus side show but have a few dollars so everyone looks the other way.

    I kinda think it's funny...
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    Nov 27, 2014 7:12 PM GMT
    I guess I've been fortunate. I've always heard about families who fought during the holidays but considering the large size of my family, I can't recall a single blowup or fight. There have been times where there was tension between certain family members but nothing that really stands out. I think a lot of it has to do with how you're raised too. Even if there were strong emotions involved, if you were to act up at one of our family gatherings, you'd be looked at like total trash. I guess everyone knows that and it keeps everyone in line.
  • LEANDRO_NJ

    Posts: 1114

    Nov 28, 2014 1:15 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan said
    LEANDRO_NJ saidContrary to the family bashing on here!? I am so blessed to have a wonderful relationship with mine! Thanksgiving had always being a very peaceful, fun, and accepting part of my life with my blood family! so Happy Thanksgiving to those who enjoy spending it with them!


    Not meant to be "family bashing" in any way... mine is largely positive, especially with parents. Most of my holidays have been excellent (at a minimum).... but the reality is, it isn't that way for many.





    Thank God I am not in the majority! And like Scruffypub stated above, it have a lot to do with how you were raised. I know that at least with my family we talk over our differences, if any, in a civilized manner! I myself never witnessed any negative comments about my sexuality in family gatherings.
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    Nov 28, 2014 3:40 AM GMT
    Okay, now my SERIOUS answer.

    This won't work for everyone, but for the past couple of years I've had to do Thanksgiving where I was really angry with some of the other relatives because they'd let me down on some personal matters so the way I chose to deal with it was to just think of them as "those nice neighbors I used to know that I see now and then at holiday functions." That way, they can't hurt me.
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    Dec 12, 2014 12:29 AM GMT
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    When the sack of shit bon_salieri stops lying about me, stops harrassing me, referencing me, addressing me, etc., so will stop my postings into every thread into which he has posted since the last time he fucked with me, my warning to anyone unsuspecting the truth about him as shown in screenshots of his own words. If he stops, I’ll stop. It is that simple..

    His latest abuse is on Dec 11 at about 6:30 PM here:
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    bon_pan saidAntijoke is nuttier than an outhouse at the county peanut festival. Pay him no mind.



    He starts off as a charming flatterer knowing people find that fun
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    Anyone who supports that anti-Semite bon-salieri is scum.