To not go to my mum's for Christmas(57 Posts)
NC in case this is identifying.
Before I had DD, DH and I used to go to my mum and step dads (SD) for Christmas to visit them and my siblings. My mum and SD are very religious and they don't do presents at Christmas. Instead they focus on the religious side of Christmas. DH and I aren't religious however at the time my my dad and his DP lived abroad and the ILs go on holiday for Christmas so it made sense to go there and see the family and neither of us minded going to church because we got to spend time with the family. It also used to take us a six hour drive to get there so we used to travel there Christmas eve and stay till after boxing day.
DD was only a few weeks old for her first Christmas so we spent the holiday at home with just DD, me and DH.
For her second Christmas she had just turned 1 and she hated the car. My dad and his DP had also moved back to the UK and lived much closer to us. So we spent Christmas day with my dad and his DP and then we travelled to my mum's in stages so DD didn't get completely overwhelmed in the car. We then stayed till New year's day.
I had never spent Christmas with my dad before but it was actually really fun and one of the best Christmases I have ever had.
So this year DD will have just turned two and I am pregnant with twins. We have recently moved and we now live just over 3 hours away from my mum's. Due to DHs job he has to go back to work after boxing day so we can't do the same as last year. My mum called last week to ask if we are coming for Christmas. I said hadn't thought about it too much yet but I was thinking of spending Christmas with my dad again and then DD and I will travel to my mum's after Christmas and then DH will travel there that weekend and we will all spend new year with them.
My mum was very upset saying she wants us all at the house for Christmas because she wants us to spend time in the church and show DD how Christmas should be celebrated. I told her I would talk to DH about it and get back to her but that I didn't think we would be coming for Christmas day. She hung up on me and then SD and some of my siblings text me asking what had happened because my mum was so angry and upset about it.
I talked to DH and we both agree that we prefer going to my dad's for Christmas and having boxing day to ourselves then going to see my mum and that it worked well last year. So I called again and spoke to SD about the arrangements and he was totally fine with it. But since then my mum has been sending me texts asking me to change my mind because she wants everyone there for Christmas and how we need to start introducing DD to the church to get her used to it and how Christmas is the best time to do that.
I just keep replying that I haven't changed my mind but now she is getting my siblings involved and my sister has just sent me a very long text saying that all the family agree that I am making the wrong decision and that they are worried about the effect my choices are having on DD. She also said that we see my dad more and so we should make the effort to see my mum as its a special day.
I haven't replied because it will just cause more upset but My sister is right we do see my dad more and maybe we should make the effort to go. But at the same time I would dread another Christmas with them. Trying to keep DD happy in church would be a nightmare and because I am a woman I am expected to help out with all the chores etc and I'm already tired as it is.
So AIBU to not go to my mum's or am I making excuses and just suck it up and go because it's the holidays and we should make the effort as we don't see them as much.
Sorry that was much longer than I thought it would be.
It's not up to your Mum to "show DD how Christmas should be celebrated"
It's up to you and her Daddy.
You need to explain to your mum that you and your DH are not religious and your DD doesn't need
indoctrinating introducing to the church at Christmas or any other time as far as you're concerned.
Also, you need to take it easy at this stage of your pregnancy,
It's your choice how involved your child is with the church. She can't insist on this. Stick to what you want.
I wouldn’t go at all if I was going to be forced to go to church.
Your beliefs aren’t hers. You don’t have to go. They don’t have to be.
I would be more sympathetic to your mum if she hadn't tried to justify the trip by the need to introduce a two year old to church, and I am fairly religious. And you're pregnant. You have a perfect right to make your own traditions and not be manipulated by your family.
YANBU. Make plans to visit another time.
I don't really mind if DD attends their church she was baptised there and I don't mind her experiencing the church. But at Christmas it's much harder as there is more than one service and after the services they spend time at home studying the bible so it's quite full on and although DD is fairly well behaved she will only be two.
However my mum would argue that all my siblings were that age in church and it was fine and my nieces and nephews will be there and they will be fine.
Sorry OP, but I think you're going to have to be honest with her and tell her that the type of Christmas she wants, is NOT the type of Christmas you want to teach DD about. Because it sounds like your mum is in an evangelical 'life is all about worshiping God and nothing else' type of church, that sucks the joy out of life (two services AND bible study after both services on Christmas day.... yeah, I can really see why you're not chomping at the bit to join in....). I grew up in that sort of church and loathed it so I'm biased against it.
Your siblings will all agree with your mum, because firstly, they live with her and daren't disagree right now. Children should respect parents, yadda, yadda. yadda , and secondly they quite likely are indoctrinated and will only start exploring their personal beliefs when they have the time and space away from your mother.
It's not easy though. My DM still wants me to visit her church with her when I visit, but I just can't stand it. She gets really upset and offended that I don't want to go. She KNOWS I don't and won't attend a church of that denomination but still she persists, because she fervently believes that her church is the RIGHT church and that I'm damned to hell for not following in the path that I KNOW is right. It's bloody hard standing up to her.
Talkin I grew up Roman Catholic and I feel the same way about them.
Stick to your guns OP. You and your Dh get to decide what Christmas is like for your Dd. Long services and bible study isn't what I would think a 2 year old would enjoy.
You are having twins, do whatever makes you happy this year, as next year you will be super busy with three little children.
Your DM is being unreasonable. You have told her your plans and now she is using emotional blackmail to get what she wants. Hanging up on you, using your Step Father and your Sister to wear you down is not on. I would be furious. Doubting your 'choices' as a parent to your daughter would be the final straw for me. She is being mean spirited, not what Christmas is about at all.
Obviously, you know better than I but this seems all about what she wants, yet she refuses to listen to you. Does she want to 'show you all off' to her church friends? My DM was guilty of this until I put my foot down.
On a practical note, and I have twins, the journey will be uncomfortable and tiring. Do you want to be wrestling with a three year in church in your condition? Three is age when children begin ro 'get' Christmas, they get so excited, it's quite magical. Doesn't your DD deserve to have fun this Christmas at your Dads. Her little life is about to be a whirlwind with the arrival of two new babies, as much as she is looking forward to the babies, you will be so busy. So what if she doesn't go to church this year, she can go another year.
Stick to your guns OP. You have made your plans.. Your DM needs to listen to what us best for your family.
This is the last xmas that you will be able to focus solely on your dd, she won't remember but you will. What works best for you and her? It is up to you and your partner to raise your dc in the way you see fit and not your mother. Emotional blackmail is an unattractive trait and if you give in once you are likely to encourage more of it. Stick to what works for you.
Wow, even if I thought ywbu entirely, there is no way on earth that I would go if my mother responded in that way. What atrocious behaviour. I'm afraid I would tell her absolutely clearly that it is her behaviour that has made you decide not to spend your time with her. If Christmas with her was fantastic, frankly, you probably be philosophical about the drive there and back etc - she needs to back off or your relationship will be permanently damaged.
Honour thy mother and thy father - all well and good - but you are now married and a woman leaves her parents' home to honour her own husband. She is a hypocrite, not behaving as a good Christian, and doesn't get her own way just because she is so willing to be a horrendous bully.
Agree with the above posts. I will add that if it was that important to her why didn’t she give you a proper invite & maybe with a little more notice? I do hate these “well you’re coming aren’t you?” Statements, that is not an invite. YANBU.
you seem quite...subservient to your family? I would say no and tough shit but I'm just that kind of gal.
You really really need to be able to put your feet up (I’m pregnant with a similar age gap to yours but just a singleton preganany). The “women expected to help with chores because women” sounds as crappy as everything else and would be reason enough in its own rights...
Their Christmas sounds intense and really pretty miserable (which I think is down to their interpretation and approach rather than just because it’s religious - I’m Not religious but have some friends who are and they have a lovely celebratory Christmas Day with ONE family church service which is actually v child focussed then presents, dinner nice walk etc)!and you should totally stick to your guns and go to your dad’s.
You need to be bluntly honest here: no we don't want dd to have a crap Christmas, no we aren't religious, your way is not the way, this works for us and how dare you criticise us. Then something along those lines to your interfering and brainwashed siblings.
Frankly I'd be inclined not to go at all, this behaviour would be icing on the cake and the sexist chore division and religion shoved down my throat would already put me off.
Some of my family are religious buy we are respectful of each other so it works. Yours aren't.
Even if you go after I guarantee you will get crap.
I agree, don’t go. It sounds pretty miserable for everyone except your Mum. The emotional blackmail and ganging up would have me digging my heels in. You don’t need to justify yourselves to them.
Actually isnt it nicer for your parents if you take turns?
I understand you should not be brow beaten but in future years it might be a plan.
Definitely stick to your guns and don't go. For all the reasons people said above. Say no.
Just from a practical point of view. If you did go to your Mum’s wouldn’t it mean that you would have to spend Christmas Day apart from your DH or have a toddler spend 6 hours of her day in car? Not to mention you being heavily pregnant with twins?
It’s quite selfish & unfair of your mum.
I would be pissed off with my sister if she said that ‘they were worried about the effect my choices were having on DD’!
Have the rest of your family forgotten that you're pregnant with twins?!
I take it you’re the only sibling with children. Even if not, they live with or near your mum and stepdad.
You are the parents now. You get to decide what is best for your family. Your mother is acting like the classic manipulative matriarch. Do what is best for you. The plan of having a relaxing Christmas and going up for a few days sounds as if it works far better.
Tough if it means you don’t get to share christmases between parents. Your mother has her other children again for Christmas Day. If she’s so into sharing her children’s christmases with her ex, that would be one to sort out. She can’t have it both ways.
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