to be a little upset about Christmas on my own?

(42 Posts)
Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:11:21

My dad was supposed to be coming to mine but has decided to spend it with his wife (my stepmother) instead, and this would be OK other than the fact she has two daughters, both of whom have partners and one of whom has two sons. I suppose in other words she has other options for people to spend the day with but I don't.

He will come to mine on Boxing Day and leave the following day so I will see him but aibu to be just a touch upset about the day itself being spent on my own?

Dawndonnaagain Sun 08-Dec-13 13:13:07

Perhaps you could help out at your local Crisis centre? That way you'd be helping others as well as being busy and meeting new people.

Dawndonnaagain Sun 08-Dec-13 13:13:49
formerbabe Sun 08-Dec-13 13:14:18

YANBU...will you be on your own for the whole day or is there somewhere you could go or someone you could join? Anyone else to invite?

I'm a bit confused as to why you would invite your dad to yours but not his wife? Do you not get on?

Did he ask if you would like to go to your stepmothers with him?

Nancy66 Sun 08-Dec-13 13:15:50

I wouldn't want to spend Christmas day on my own. Is there nowhere else you can go? A friend? Neighbour?

Get the word out there that you'll be on your own (Facebook etc) and see if any invites come your way. I absolutely wouldn't see a family member or close friend on their own at Christmas so I'm sure you'll get offers.

Maybe former the OP wouldn't have room for Dad+StepMother+ 2 DD+ DP+2 DC (and Uncle Tom Cobbley and his cat grin )

But he was her Dad before he was the StepMothers DH ?

I'm really confused. Why didn't you invite your dad and your stepmother? Can't you spend it with them?

Smoorikins Sun 08-Dec-13 13:18:17

I think it would be unreasonable to expect your dad to not spend Christmas with his wife. Why can't you go and spend it with them all?

formerbabe Sun 08-Dec-13 13:19:30

I was just wondering if they didn't get on. Its unusual for a husband and wife to be apart on Christmas day. I also thought it was odd that they didn't ask the op to join them.

BohemianGirl Sun 08-Dec-13 13:20:50

My dad was supposed to be coming to mine but has decided to spend it with his wife

Why wouldnt he spend it with his wife? can you not go their house instead>

YoungBritishPissArtist Sun 08-Dec-13 13:22:40

Is there a back story with your stepmum? Do you not get on?

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:22:47

I didn't not invite her smile but my dad said originally 'I will come to yours for Christmas' then said when he'd told her this she'd got upset. She would be very welcome here but she's never come and I've never been invited to theirs - don't know why.

I don't really want to spend Christmas at a friends house - did it before and you do get in the way a little bit! I'm used to spending the day on my own, I'm just upset as I thought this year it would be different but now it's not.

I have spent christmas on my own and while I wouldn't want to do it every year it wasn't as bad as I thought.

I bought loads of my favourite food and drink, spent all day in my pj's watching films and reading, no pressure to do anything if I didn't want to.

And you have Boxing day with your Dad to look forward to fsmile

formerbabe Sun 08-Dec-13 13:24:15

I really feel for you. Do they realise you will be alone on the day? If so, I think they are treating you appallingly.

ilovesooty Sun 08-Dec-13 13:26:14

I'm going to be spending it on my own as well
Our local homeless centre is so overwhelmed with offers that you have to register the preceding January. Last year I spent the day seeing my mum at her care home. 250 mile round trip.

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:26:32

Oh yeah, they know - he's always done this which is why I think it's seen as just not that big a deal any more. The day itself is OK, obviously I can get through it as its just a day when all is said and done. What is upsetting though is that I'm so low down on priorities - it would be fair enough if it was a choice between me on my own or her on her own but it isn't, and yet I still lose out!

Maryz Sun 08-Dec-13 13:27:39

Could you invite yourself to your Dad's and see what happens?

Obviously if he says no it will hurt, but maybe (just maybe) she thinks you wouldn't want to come?

ilovesooty Sun 08-Dec-13 13:27:56

I forgot to say I hope you do manage to do something nice. It's shit feeling like a charity case or as if you might be in the way of other people's Christmas.

formerbabe Sun 08-Dec-13 13:28:09

If I was in you position I would tell him outright that you are a little upset to be on your own on Christmas day and ask why you can't join in with them?

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:28:11

Like I say, the actual day isn't the issue but its more feeling like I'm last on everybody's priorities if you see what I mean. If he couldn't spend the day with me because of work or traffic that would be different, but it's because he doesn't want to and that does hurt a bit.

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 08-Dec-13 13:29:46

Agree OP I would hate to spend Christmas at a friend's etc if I can't be with my own family I would prefer to be on my own in my own house.

Hope you have a nice day in any case just stock up on nice food drinks etc. sorry about your dad changing his plans.

pigletmania Sun 08-Dec-13 13:31:45

Why not goto dads, after allies about family

ilovesooty Sun 08-Dec-13 13:31:53

I get where you're coming from. Same with my sister who told me two years ago that I might as well go away as it wasn't as if I had anywhere else to go. I don't mind the thought of the day so much but the cheerful family focused build up is depressing.

pigletmania Sun 08-Dec-13 13:32:10

After all it's doh

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:32:27

Maryz, I did suggest that last year in fact and I can't even remember what he said - some excuse anyway!

He's always been a bit weird about keeping wives and children separate which of course exacerbates the problem(s) as on the odd occasion we DO meet, we never know what to say to one another! What is annoying is that the same in reverse isn't true - he knows her two daughters and their children and spouses/partners very well.

I have tried to talk to him about it but its hard as he hones in on a specific issue (such as 'oh well we didn't invite you because there wouldn't have been space') rather than the problem as a whole - not sure if that makes sense! It's really hard as its a delicate subject to say the least as we barely spoke for about seven years (not my choice) so I don't want to damage the fact we have a relationship but by the same token I do sometimes wonder if its even worth it!

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 08-Dec-13 13:33:24

I know what you mean OP but I think you're on to something when you say he's often done this and so they think it's not a big deal. Don't really understand why he said he would in the first place though and then changed his mind that makes it worse somehow. I doubt it's that he doesnt want to though more he doesn't want to upset his wife?

TheHeadlessLadyofCannock Sun 08-Dec-13 13:34:27

'she's never come and I've never been invited to theirs - don't know why.'

Bigger picture, you need to get to the bottom of this, don't you?

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:36:10

People can be so thoughtless ilovesooty - I can really understand how much that must have hurt.

I hope you also manage to have a good Christmas. Ironically I do like this time of year, my ex b/f was a nurse and often worked Christmas Day and I honestly didn't mind at all. But there's a difference between 'oh that's a bit rubbish' and 'oh, the one family member I have can't be bothered!'

Friends always mean well but I once and only once accepted an invitation to be at a friends on the day itself, it was terrible. I felt like a visiting alien from another planet!

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 13:39:28

Headless, it is very hard to explain other than rather lamely saying its just something he does/we do. Dad meets a woman and within hours (it seems!) he is embraced as a long lost relative into her wider family but I have yet to meet my step-sisters, step-in laws, and step-grandchildren. And they have been married 2 years!

He has been married before, to a lady who wasn't my mum I mean, and was exactly the same then.

pigletmania Sun 08-Dec-13 13:41:57

I would have it out with him, that's not acceptable. Her dd are included, and your not, you need to be more vocal.

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 08-Dec-13 13:42:27

Friends always mean well but I once and only once accepted an invitation to be at a friends on the day itself, it was terrible. I felt like a visiting alien from another planet!

This exactly. I often get invitations from friends which is of course very nice but they can't understand that I'd prefer to be alone than feel like an alien! smile

pigletmania Sun 08-Dec-13 13:43:28

Don't accept it. Either thy if he doesent change I would cut him off tbh if he feels so low of me

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 08-Dec-13 13:43:32

However you might feel like that if you went to your stepmother's too...

Maryz Sun 08-Dec-13 13:44:41

I can understand how much that hurts sad. When dh's dad remarried he spend one horrible Christmas where he was literally at the house for about half an hour, long enough to have one plate of main course, and then his step mum basically said "don't you have anywhere you ought to be" and chucked him out. It was the fact that his dad didn't say anything that hurt.

I think you need to prepare and plan. Make sure you have lots of goodies you wouldn't normally have. Try to meet friends on Christmas Eve (and don't drink too much, you don't want a hangover).

I bet (amongst all the moans about families and in-0laws) there will be other mumsnetters in the same boat, so you could start a thread and have a virtual Christmas night on here, watch some trashy film and pull it apart, and have a glass of wine

If this is a regular occurrence why not think now about next year - book a holiday, maybe learn to ski There are quite a few Christmas based holidays that you can go to on your own. They can be expensive (especially the chalet skiing ones), but might be worth looking ahead now and putting a deposit on something.

IsItMeOr Sun 08-Dec-13 13:45:30

OP, it sounds like your dad is the main issue here.

While I think it would be unreasonable to expect somebody to spend christmas day apart from their spouse, I don't think that's really the problem.

Is there a way you could engineer a phone call with his wife and try to ask her whether it would be okay for you to visit?

Maybe he's one of those people that just can't cope with negotiating these family relationships, and hurts people while ignoring it. Perhaps his wife will be happy to help him manage the relationships, so you get the result you want without your dad having to change his apparently personality?

TheHeadlessLadyofCannock Sun 08-Dec-13 14:48:12

OP, I do understand about things that just happen and no one really knows why or talks about them. There are similar dynamics among my family and friends and I feel like curling up and dying at the very thought of trying to discuss them grin

But as an outsider to your case, that was the best advice I could give. Other than trying not to feel hurt, or turning it into a positive and enjoying having the day to yourself.

I hope you start to feel a bit better about it, anyway thanks

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 18:23:13

Thanks very much.

Maryz - thank you for that link, I love skiing smile

Maryz Sun 08-Dec-13 18:37:20

You do realise they have some availability for this Christmas. It's bloody expensive, though.

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 18:39:05

I think it is a bit late in the day for this Christmas, I've already made arrangements for my dad to come to me and would need to sort out pets and so on. Definitely something I'd like to do next year though.

Maryz Sun 08-Dec-13 18:43:46

I think it's probably the type of holiday you could put a deposit down on in January and then not pay in full until 8 weeks before or something.

And skiing at Christmas is just great fun. It's all festive and snowy and inclusive.

In the meantime, just reassure yourself it isn't you, it's your dad. He is choosing to be a bit odd. Just be nice to yourself.

Stgeorgiaandthedragon Sun 08-Dec-13 18:50:09

Yeah - that would be perfect; I like to spread the costs grin

We went skiing a few times as a family when my mum was still alive, it was lovely.

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