To cancel this Christmas visit?(85 Posts)
Dd has autism. She's very high functioning but just can't cope with busyness and noise and too much going on. This weekend we have been at my parents and it was massively busy, loads of relatives trooping in and out. She managed well into mid evening when one of my parents mildly told her off for something (I wasn't in the room) and she reacted very badly resulting in him yelling at her and her melting down completely. There is history to this. My Dad was very difficult and disbelieving about the diagnosis in the first place although he seemed to come round. No similar incidents in recent years. After she calmed down she managed to tell me she can't deal with all the noise here and we stayed too long - two nights. It's huge for her to manage to tell me this.
We are supposed to be here for three nights over Christmas. I don't want too. I know she won't cope and she has begged me to let her stay at home for Christmas and not being her away.
I know my parents will sulk if this is cancelled - for months most likely. For added information, they won't be alone at Christmas as other close family members will be there. We are a three hour drive away so not practical just to come for lunch.
Any thoughts please?
Is one night feasible or is that just difficult? Just feels more of a compromise so you get to see all your family but less pressure on your dd. I would put your dd first though so if she can't cope then I would stay at home.
Is it possible to get a hotel room nearby for a night or two, so that you can retreat when it gets too much?
DD comes first, stay home and keep her happy. We can't even start to imagine what it was like for your DD and I'm sure it will be a lot noisier and busier Christmas time.
I agree with camper - I know three hours is a long drive for one night, but worth it in the circumstances?
3 night sounds like a horrible imposition on you anyway. Go for one night and let them sulk.
We could go for one night, driving up on Christmas morning then back on Boxing Day morning but I feel like that's just going to really suck - dragging the kids away from gifts and a lovely relaxing day for a 2/3 hour drive there and to be honest I think my parents will sulk just as much about that too.
How old is your dd, and what have you usually done for Christmas (home/away)?
I would be changing the arrangement. Your dd has managed to tell you she can't cope with what is in place. Add in the stress of Christmas too (mine are all excited, but also stressed - everything g looks different with decorations etc, different food, different rules, different people with different habits and routines, even the added stress of excitement (or dread!) over presents etc) and it's going to be difficult.
A hotel nearby sounds like a good compromise if your dd would be willing to consider it.
An added thought - we went away last Christmas for the first time. The dc (then aged 11, 8, and 3, all autistic) all loved it. We went to Lapland, all hugely exciting and enjoyable and had a fabulous time. This year, hey have all begged to stay at home. Despite enjoying themselves, they just want to stay here (and when I add in that currently home is a building site and very stressful, it shows the depth of their feelings).
I would be wary too of not compromising somehow for your dd - she has managed to tell you what is wrong and how it can be fixed. If you ignore this, you could damage trust in the future - why should she tell you what's wrong if you won't do anything g about it anyway? (This would be an issue for my dd1, which is why I mention it)
Your parents sound childish.
When I had my kids the one thing I was determined to do was to establish myself as a christmas matriarch for the sake of my children.
So that meant no being away from home on christmas day, no travelling on christmas day and no extended trips around that time if the kids wouldn't enjoy it.
Visit your mother for one day after christmas and stay in a hotel, or have her visit you .
Can you stay over night at some time between Christmas and new year or meet half way and spend a day together?
Your DD has to come first, especially because your DF is not considerate of her needs.
Many families with children stay in their own homes so don't feel bad
Frankly, the fact that your parents would sulk says it all about their ability to understand (or care about) their grandchild's disability. Stay home. You can put her first even if they can't.
Another suggestion for the hotel here. A retreat for your DD when it gets too much. Is this a possibility? Or failing that all go for one day and night and your DP go home and you stay a bit longer and get the train home?
Agree with pp, it's brilliant that your dd has managed to tell you how she feels. You definitely need to find a way to meet her needs. Is there any way your parents could visit you? Would that be more manageable? Either way their sulking shouldn't factor in your decision making, it's just ridiculous.
You have to cancel.
After this incident if you go back so soon, for 3 nights in a busy noisychristmas environment, you will be on eggshells the whole time wondering if your dd is about to melt down. If she does it will hardly be the best for everyone else's day.
Your dd will dread it from now til then, you will be anxious.
Just take the decision that needs to be taken, be assertive about it and do not allow your parents sulking to make you feel gullty.
Stay home. You don't get many Christmases with DCs. They grow up very quickly and will be off doing their own thing all too soon. Stay at home and give DD the Christmas you all want.
Think about what you are saying - you are considering spoiling a child's Christmas because two adults will 'sulk' otherwise. If that is true there is something very wrong with their priorities and the whole family dynamic.
I have high functioning ASD. I wouldn't be able to do this either. I have managed a couple of nights with other people where I know that I can be on my own/get away when I need to. Some people are ok and understanding about this, other people think I'm being rude and anti social. I can tolerate a couple of nights with people who are ok and understanding about this, but the knowledge that people who think I'm being rude and anti social are thinking this means that I can't tolerate any time with them because the anxiety of worrying about being able to get away when I need to is too great.
I find that a lot of NT people have very specific expectations about how things should be and what they should look like and how things should be done that don't allow for anyone doing anything slightly differently or that they need to do (and they think we're inflexible ). Everyone seems to conform to these 'expectations' in a way that you simply cannot do if you have ASD.
Do what your daughter needs and if your parents can't cope with that, then let them sulk.
I hereby give you permission to stay at home , in my capacity as concerned internet random.
If your parents sulk, send them to me and I will explain WHY and HOW this situation has arisen.
Please don't tie yourself in knots trying to please everyone, that just isn't possible.
First choice, by far - stay home. Christmas is not supposed to be about preventing grown adults from sulking. Your daughter should come first.
As a back up - go Christmas Eve evening so you arrive in the evening and leave Christmas Day evening - everyone gets Christmas Day, it won't (unless you're a sulky GP) ruin anyone's day when you leave because by that point everyone is knackered anyway, and your daughter is back home in her own bed Christmas Day night.
But I still prefer my first choice.
Excellent response from Norks. Life is too short to please everyone.
I never see my DSis at Christmas, her 2 children both have ASD and find the whole thing overwhelming. Sadly, extended family often don't understand and make demands.
Christmas is just one day, I love my niece and nephew, I'm happy to see them on their terms. It means we have a lovely day together at the end of January, open presents, play and it's a lovely day in a month that is often gloomy.
Do what's right for your family OP.
Re families at Christmas - if you really love someone then you want what is best for them.
You don't insist they all have to do what you want, year after year.
It sounds as if the DP have not accepted that life has moved on, their nuclear family has expanded and that their needs are not the most important.
Why can't they come to visit you instead, OP? Staying in a hotel if necessary. That way they get to see their DGC and your DD has the security of her own home?
You don't want to go, your dd doesn't want to go - don't go.
I can't bear sulking. Only way to deal with sulkers is to ignore them.
No brainer stay at home. But then I think it's for gps to fit in with the family with young children unless they are extremely ill / frail.
If they are that bothered they can come to you. Don't understand why stretched busy families with young children pack up and trek around the country with all their gifts etc to appease time rich couples.
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