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Holiday strategies?

Started by Pen, November 08, 2016, 11:07:58 am

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Pen, my guess is that after hearing about DIL and her FOO's plans in the coming days, you realize you don't have that give and take in the relationship.  Too bad they can't be more discrete and sensitive to your feelings, especially DIL since she knows you would like to see DIL/DS more often.  From your DIL's perspective, she probably does feel she sees you a lot (like, what more do you want?). 

The last holiday I went to with DIL/DS and DIL's FOO (which was a rare occurrence), I was confused that hardly anyone spoke with me. My previous interactions with the FOO had been fairly friendly.  In retrospect, I suspect DIL poisoned the well beforehand because DIL was not the one who extended the invitation to me and she resented my presence.  I only recently found out what lies DIL is capable of and the hate she has towards me so it makes sense that DIL has said some foul things behind my back.

Your situation sounds different from mine in that there seems to be change in a positive direction and you may be able to continue to build on that.  If you can overlook their lack of tact and insensitivity.


Awwww, Pen, I'm sorry to hear that.  It's like you had the rug pulled out from under you!  It is so hard to ride that roller coaster of emotions, isn't it? (hope, dashed hope...repeat) I confess that when I first read your message, I thought it was a positive that DIL said, "See you at Christmas."  But I see how hearing DIL make plans for the near future with her parents would have been painful for you.  A big hug to you!!


As a newbie, I hope I don't sound too presumptuous with my comments, but I relate to the slights and the pain in your interaction with DS/DIL.  I want them to be nicer, kinder and loving to you.  I'm pulling for you. 


"hope, dashed hope...repeat"    the dance of the left behind mil.  after coming out of a visit the thought runs through the head that maybe we'd be better off without the visits.  but then i think of seeing my grands and know that i need to suck it up for them.  always drama, always hurt.  my son cuts us off if we start to disagree with anything they say or do.  but he and dil can say whatever they want and do whatever they want and we listen and shake our heads.  all to not get cut off from the kids.  certainly not what i wanted.  such is life,huh?


Almost every day, I question myself if I did the right thing in cutting off DS/DIL.  The answer is always yes, of course, it was abusive.  I'm still grieving the loss and the holidays don't help.  I'm finding I'm having trouble concentrating and being organized, and the house is messier.  I am getting done what I absolutely have to, and I think that will just have to be enough for the time being.  I am trying to get daily exercise for my physical and mental health. 

My DS and I are at an impasse.  He is just accepting the cut-off and being annoyed with me for it.  He is choosing not to deal with it.  But I had a new positive take on this today:   Although I can't talk to DS, I am modeling a healthy response for him, which is not to accept abuse.  That is the statement I am making by my absence. 

(How many more days til Christmas?!?)   :o 


(((hugs))) to you all  :-*

M, I love your new take on your situation. You're right, we need to teach them how we want to be treated. I don't want my future GC to watch me be treated as "less than," so I'll be assessing and correcting as we go along. (GC aren't yet on the horizon, but DIL is eager to get started!)

Regarding the "see you at Christmas" remark by DIL, her FOO gets a full week with them every year at Christmas (and other trips during the year.) We get Christmas Day every other year. Maybe that's part of my reaction, eh?  ::)

I really wish we could go away for the holidays, but we have a disabled adult daughter whose schedule won't accommodate it and I hate to leave her alone at Christmas. She starts wearing bells and antlers the day after (USA) Thanksgiving  :D
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


Regarding my comment about modeling not accepting abuse, my intention is to bring to DS's attention that abuse IS going on.  I believe that DIL is generally abusive and that DS has normalized to it.  DS used to have good healthy boundaries and the skills to work out differences, but now he just seems to want to avoid conflict and I am collateral damage.  I left an abusive marriage when my DS was little because I did not want him to be raised the same as I was with an abusive parent and a "good" enabling parent.  I chose not to be the enabling parent for my DS so it breaks my heart to see the abusive cycle continue in his marriage and with my GC.


Gratitude is something I need to practice daily. Thanks for the reminder, TG  :)

Marina, thanks for clarifying. (((hugs)))
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


Now that the holidays are pretty much over (I'm grateful for that), I am wondering how everyone did with their strategies for getting through the holidays.  What worked, what didn't? 

For myself, actual Thanksgiving and Christmas were spent with gatherings of friends and acquaintances and it went very well.  It was the time in between that got to me; I think I was depressed because I had trouble concentrating and being productive--I was in slow-mo.  I feel much better this week, like a fresh start.  I don't know what I would do differently and just hope next holiday season I will be in better shape emotionally overall.       


I was born in the 1920s. All holidays were very special and always involved family we seldom saw. For me, not seeing anyone at all over the New Year's weekend was very hard. My son was coming up on New Years Eve Day but they got invited to be house guests of friends with a cabin up in the mountains. By Sunday night I was a real mess. He's coming tomorrow and I'm not laying a guilt trip on him. It's past and I'm OK.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


Hope you have a wonderful visit, Luise.


Just realized I missed some important stuff in my assessment of my holiday experience.  Because of my estrangement from DS/DIL/GC, I also missed family birthdays during this period.  And I weathered contact from DS, which was upsetting but went nowhere.  In hindsight, I see I was dealing with a lot more than just the holidays.  I think I was in a fog because I was grieving.