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Christmas - a real wallow.

(16 Posts)
metaphoricus Thu 17-Nov-16 00:09:40

AIBU to really, really hate Christmas. My mother died just after Christmas, my father died the day after his birthday on the 21st Dec, just before Christmas. Both my dds were born in December, just before Christmas, and my eldest has severe physical and learning disabilities which completely preclude any possibility of a jolly Christmas. You just can't be completely and carelessly jolly when you have a sick child - and in the following years when she reaches adulthood, a daughter who has no speech or understanding of occasion, and responds badly to changes in routine.

We have had far flung family come visit for the three days over xmas, but they are generally a bit taken aback at the limitations of freedom that having a daughter with LD commits us to. My daughter gets a bit stressed when her space is being invaded. ( 16 extra people, at times)

MIL: " should she be going up to bed soon?"

Me : No. She's 30 years old. It's 8.30pm.

MIL: But she seems a bit unhappy. And tired.

Me: I can't just take her to bed because she's being disruptive.
She's disruptive all the time. I can't put her out of the way
to suit present company.

FIL "Does she have to make that awful wailing noise all the time?"

Me "She does it when she's upset. She's upset now because her
house, her safe haven, is full of strangers.

MIL : But she doesn't seem very happy. Perhaps if you put her to bed
she would settle down.

(No she wouldn't, but only I know that.
She would be even more unhappy because she wouldn't know what
the feck was going on - being locked in her bedroom at 8.30pm?
Never happened before, so why now?) It would be a total mystery to her. Loads of people invading her space, and then HER being the one
to get kicked out of it, to make it more comfortable for everybody else.

Fuck that for a game of soldiers.
Fuck off out of her house then, if you don't like it.
Fucking look after her for 30 fucking years, and then see how fucking
easy it is to put her out of the fucking way so you can enjoy a game of fucking scrabble with the family without her sending the fucking tiles scattering everywhere. You only have to put up with it at Christmas.
We fucking LIVE with it - every DAY.

So now I feel lots better. I've got most of it off my chest. I am willing to bet, however, that there are a lot of parents out there who can totally empathise.

Christmas can be very draining. Even if you have a perfectly lovely family and normal kids, I'm assured by friends that it's never what the telly adverts would have you believe.

I really really fucking hate Christmas, and I will only relax when it's over.

dailymaillazyjournos Thu 17-Nov-16 00:21:07

YANBU. And you deserve a good wallow. If Christmas is a crap time for you, then that's how it is and you can't change that to make other people feel more comfortable.

I wouldn't have visitors (unless it makes YOU and your DC happy.) Bearing in mind the realities you face, is there any way you'd like to spend the day? - would you like to ignore it totally? If not what elements might be ok - a nice meal (ie one that everyone in the house likes), a film, a few presents, a walk etc?

You don't have to meet other people's expectations or host people that put more stress on you. You sound to have enough to manage on a day-to-day basis without putting yourself and your DC through more.

I do think a LOT of people loathe Christmas. Unrealistic expectations, cost, dealing with relatives you find difficult at the best of times, hard work, mess etc. That doesn't make your situation better but I know lots of people who either wish they could just not bother and who are totally relieved when normal service is resumed.

You should NEVER have to take your DD to bed early, to suit guests. Totally not acceptable.

Archduke Thu 17-Nov-16 00:24:59

Oh OP have some flowers

Can you plan only what suits you and your family and stuff everyone else?

Disabrie22 Thu 17-Nov-16 00:28:54

OP I can see completely why you don't enjoy Xmas - your inlaws should be much more understanding and supportive

Marmighty Thu 17-Nov-16 00:32:37

It's a bloody nightmare coping with guests when you have family members with additional needs. And nobody is ever any bloody HELP.

Christmas is completely overrated, you should just do what you and your DD would like to do and sod everyone else. flowers for you OP.

metaphoricus Thu 17-Nov-16 00:35:11

Absolutely, I only do what I want to do nowadays. I have come down heavy on what I will and won't do. It doesn't make me popular with the in-laws, but I don't give a monkeys what they think. They don't live it.

It took me a long time to commit to this mindset but I so wish I'd got here sooner. After many years of being a bit of a lightfoot, I've finally learned how to put it down, very heavily.

metaphoricus Thu 17-Nov-16 00:37:04

And nobody is ever any bloody HELP

In a nutshell.

TheBouquets Thu 17-Nov-16 01:00:31

I am amazed that in 30 years of your daughter's life your PILs have not got any understanding of her ways and needs. I totally get it that no-one ever actually helps. That is so typical.
Christmas is so over done with commercialism now that I doubt if there are many families who live up to the adverts picture of family life. What I think happens is that we are shown these happy family pictures and then think ourselves bad or inadequate if we don't live up to it.
I think you need to stop inviting the PILs for Christmas. They don't get the difference between the TV and your reality

YouHadMeAtCake Thu 17-Nov-16 01:06:31

I have nothing really helpful to say OP but well done you for standing up for DD and have some 💐

metaphoricus Thu 17-Nov-16 01:44:08

Thank you all. Your helpful words and flowers mean a lot when I am surrounded by people who won't understand.

VladimirsPooTin Thu 17-Nov-16 01:48:05

Christmas is not the relaxing floaty happy time that TV would have us believe. And you sound like such a brilliant mum.

BoopTheSnoot Thu 17-Nov-16 02:30:56

Oh meta of course YANBU.
I'm shocked at the attitude of your PIL, they should be supporting you and looking out for their granddaughter's best interests.
For what it's worth, I think you sound amazing and I bet your DD loves the bones of you.
It's true, Christmas ain't all it's cracked up to be.

TheWitTank Thu 17-Nov-16 02:50:30

OP flowers for you. I also think you need to stop inviting people over for Christmas and spend it however you wish -be it celebrating the occasion or just having it as another normal day. Your guests inability to even try and understand your DD LD and respect her in her home is awful. Locking her away out of sight at 8.30 angrysad. You sound like an amazing parent flowers

Stanky Thu 17-Nov-16 06:08:07

I agree. I hope that you can do what you want for you and your family this Christmas. Christmas is a big upheaval for any family, but I think that any one should be able to opt out of Christmas is they're not into it.

flowers for you OP.

LetsAllEatCakes Thu 17-Nov-16 07:06:18

How on earth are your pil so clueless after thirty years? Sounds like it's all about what's best for them not your daughter.

Are you having visitors this year or keeping them at arms length?

I'm so sorry for your losses and stress. Christmas may be great for some but it's not that way for all.

Imbroglio Thu 17-Nov-16 07:18:37

If your inlaws are fit and well could you ask them to help - give them specific jobs to do? Is there anything that they could do to give you and your family a break or a treat?

Sorry it sounds like a really tough one.

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