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AIBU about Christmas?

(111 Posts)
AmericanFanjoStory Tue 18-Nov-14 15:56:36

This may be long, so for that I sincerely apologise...!

I'm the NRP to my 3yo DS, I have him 3 days a week and occasionally over weekends. I live with my DP and this Christmas will be the first Christmas together as a couple. It also transpires that my parents and my younger brother are without a place to go this year so I've said that we'd happily have them down. I'm also going to be having my son from 4pm through until the 27th, and so this is a massive deal for me. I love Christmas and for the first time ever I am hosting Christmas in my house and I'll have my family with me rather than being on my own/with ex-p's mum and dad.

Trouble is - my DP hates Christmas. And by "hate" I mean "loathes with all the depths of Tartarus"... He will not discuss it, he will not participate in discussions, he will not be cooking dinner, he has steadfastly told me that I have to buy my own Christmas presents, wrap them, and then give them to myself - he won't even write the gift label! - and he won't watch Christmas films or listen to Christmas music.

He has explained that, due to various traumas and stigmas growing up, that he hates Christmas, and I'm trying really hard to accept that. But I adore Christmas, so my compromise has been that I'll tone it down if he puts up with it with minimal complaint. He then countered that he'll "pretend to care", but only when my son is around. I was okay with that.

Cut to yesterday. I bought my son his own Magic Key for Santa to use. He loves the idea, ExP has one, my mum has one, and its considered a tradition nowadays. Well DS showed DP it, all excited, and DPs response was to tell him that it wasn't necessary because Santa is magic anyway so I'm silly for buying it, as I should "know better"...

He claims that was him trying to get involved and now doesn't know why I'm so furious with him - I'm angry because he could have gone along with it for 30 seconds until it had passed rather than calling me out on being an idiot in front of my boy - and that if I'm that annoyed at his "participating" then he isn't going to tolerate Christmas any more. Even tried convincing me to take the tree down... (yes my tree is I don't care! :D)

Christmas is a massive part of me, and of my life, and I can happily go along with anything that he likes that I don't, why can't he do that for me IYSWIM?

I've tried being understanding and sympathetic towards his feelings, but it's seeming like he doesn't care about my feelings so why should I give a damn about his? Has anyone got any ideas on how I can go forward with this?

KateMoose Tue 18-Nov-14 15:59:41

Get him to watch Friends where Chandler hates Xmas. YABU- why should his feelings ruin it for everyone else. Killjoy. Tell him to get his game face on for your DS if nothing else.

ghostyslovesheep Tue 18-Nov-14 16:02:12

He sounds delightful but you aren't exactly helping it's massively ott to have your tree up now if he hates it - sounds like neither of you will compromise which doesn't bode well

WorraLiberty Tue 18-Nov-14 16:04:57

Sorry but he sounds like a selfish, heartless git.

He's supposed to love you. He knows you and your child absolutely love Christmas and he won't make a tiny bit of an effort?

When my now DH moved in, he wasn't that fussed about Christmas either but he soon learned how much it meant to me and the kids and now he absolutely loves it.

You don't get many Christmases when your kids are small, don't let this selfish git spoil them for you.

weegiemum Tue 18-Nov-14 16:05:12

He's being an arse but seriously, you have your tree up? No wonder he's hacked off, he hates Christmas and you've got decorations up on the 18th of November? Talk about rubbing his nose in it!

Sunna Tue 18-Nov-14 16:05:23


Given that he hates Christmas it's a bit daft to start it this early. Tree up in November?

Try to tone it down until a few days before and he may be more prepared to compromise.

WorraLiberty Tue 18-Nov-14 16:05:44

I agree about the tree being up waaaaay to early though grin

BrieAndChilli Tue 18-Nov-14 16:06:25

I think having a tree up and doing xmassy things in November is a bit OTT (and I say this as someone who loves Xmas and has Xmas all planned out and done a lot of Xmas shopping already)
Especially as your dp doesn't like Xmas and you know that.
A better compromise would have been to put tree up 6/7th December, and maybe make your bedroom a Xmas free Zoe with a TV etc so during Xmas your partner has somewhere he can go when he doesn't feel festive.

FunkyBoldRibena Tue 18-Nov-14 16:07:22

Can he move out until 6th Jan?

I hate am not a fan by any means, I don't have a tree, or any decs, but my nieces love it and so I enjoy it with them.

Fake it if he can't make it IMHO.

zeeboo Tue 18-Nov-14 16:09:29

Can you really spend the rest of your life with this man? It would be a relationship deal breaker for me.

TheRealMaryMillington Tue 18-Nov-14 16:10:18

You've got your tree up?

AmericanFanjoStory Tue 18-Nov-14 16:10:58

Just to clarify - my tree normally wouldn't be up this early :D I'm not that bad! DS asked me about it and wanted to help me put it up. It's in an unobtrusive corner of the house that is normally overlooked so not exactly prominent, and I checked with him first. His response was "do what the fuck you like"...

TheRealMaryMillington Tue 18-Nov-14 16:14:47

I'm sorry, your partner hates Christmas, you love it. This must be a problem. I can see his side if you are going around acting like the bloke in Elf when Christmas for him is entirely associated with misery.

If you want him to muster some enthusiasm, you need to temper your expectations.

This is the ideal opportunity to define a new kind of christmas for both of you, one that you both share and enjoy as the new household and family that you are.

AmericanFanjoStory Tue 18-Nov-14 16:15:03

And honestly - he's not like this on a day-to-day basis. He isn't snappy or selfish at all. So this is a bit of a shock to me... We've got what I'd class as a great relationship with no secrets or issues, we talk about our problems etc... but the second it passes November 5th it's like a phobic reaction :/ Won't entertain it at all...!

WorraLiberty Tue 18-Nov-14 16:15:04

Did you not tell your DS that Christmas isn't until next month?

Heels99 Tue 18-Nov-14 16:15:06

You live together but it's your first Xmas together as a couple so presumably you haven't been together very long? Less than a year? There needs to be some give and take on both sides. Putting up the tree now is excessive given the circumstances, step back and chill out a bit. Leave him to warm up a bit about Xmas, that isn't going to happen in November.

Or go to your parents for the day and leave him at home, it does seem he may put a dampener on things.

bigbluestars Tue 18-Nov-14 16:16:08

Given that he feels this way about christmas you really are taking the piss putting up your tree now.

I would compromise- no mention of christmas until 2 weeks before at which point he can take himself off on holiday until it's all over.

You both sound unreasonable.

bigbluestars Tue 18-Nov-14 16:20:02

OP maybe he is phobic about having a christmas tree up in the middle of November- I would be pretty phobic about that too.

SolidGoldBrass Tue 18-Nov-14 16:23:25

Dump the man. This is major, major selfishness on his part and he's going to get worse, not better. He's an adult, not a teenager, and if he can't behave himself over something that means a lot to his partner and a young child he is not worth keeping.

AmericanFanjoStory Tue 18-Nov-14 16:23:58

Point taken - I'll take the tree down.

However, I think that's a smaller issue. I like to get ahead with Christmas, and he's putting up roadblocks here and there. I've got the presents mostly sorted, but I've had to wrap them when he's not in the house, and put them out of sight completely until the day... I just don't want to tiptoe around the entire subject of Xmas when, frankly, it takes a lot of planning and dedication to pull Christmas off...

bigbluestars Tue 18-Nov-14 16:28:28

I agree with solid- yes the xmas tree doesn't help, but it's not the main issue.

I would rather spend christmas with my own kids and parents than a man who is is "pretending to care"

I didn't quite understand whether he has a child of his own, but if a man wanted to be part of my family and my child's life than "pretending" wouldn't be good enough. He would genuinely want to care, and put his own feelings of christmas aside in order to join in the festivities.

MrsTerryPratchett Tue 18-Nov-14 16:32:57

He is being very churlish and awful to a child. That is not OK. However, someone you love told you that they hate Christmas, it is a bad memory for them and you started all this nonsense in November. That's two months of Christmas. TWO MONTHS. Can't you compromise on the traditional Christmas? Tree goes up on Christmas Eve and is down before 12th night. That way he only has to fake it for a few days.

drbonnieblossman Tue 18-Nov-14 16:33:19

Can he not 'get' what a massive deal this is for you?

Love or loathe of Christmas should perhaps be next in line to "do you want children in the future?" When you first meet someone.

girlywhirly Tue 18-Nov-14 16:33:51

I think you need to consider that this is a warning as to how he is going to be as a step parent. What do you think DS' father will think and will he alter the contact arrangement as a result, if he thinks DS isn't going to have a happy time?

I'm sorry your DP has a problem with Christmas due to things that happened while growing up, but he as an adult can get help for that and not be so horrid to you in front of your young son. He sounds incredibly self-centred if he can't make the smallest effort for a little boy and his mum. And how will he behave when your parents and brother are there, will he call you an idiot in front of them too, and refuse to engage in anything to do with Christmas?

I think you should have a back-up plan for Christmas in case it all goes wrong.

teenagetantrums Tue 18-Nov-14 16:35:50

Well if he doesn't do Christmas just don't involve him, explain to your son that DP does not like Christmas. Let your DP stay in bed al lday and ignore if he wants you and your family just carry on and do your thing, make sure you don't but him any presents or cook him any food though.

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