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to not want my family to visit for xmas? Please help.

(8 Posts)
abitpearshaped Wed 07-Oct-09 13:03:07

For the past two years my family (dad, brother, two teenage nieces) have stayed with us over xmas. My dad is a widower: my step-mum died two years ago. The first xmas was quite raw, and I was glad my dad was not alone. My brother was a bit lazy, but my nieces helped out a bit, so that was a bit stressful, but not too bad, and my 3 little ones seemed happy enough. DH didn't get to see his family until boxing day, and it was the first xmas they hadn't all been together. But he is a very kind man, and went along with it for my sake.
Last xmas, my dad arrived, then late on xmas eve my brother and nieces arrived with my brother's new girlfriend. I was given very little notice of this, but felt pressure to accept another guest, or my brother wouldn't come.
Whist here, they ate and drank LOADS,they brought a few alcopops but nothing else. They made no offers to help with cooking or washing up (apparently my nieces couldn't wash up because of their new gel nails, and my brother was too busy drinking or playfighting with his new girlfriend. Very uncomfortable.) They went to the pub on xmas day morning and asked me what time lunch would be ready so they would know when to come back, fell asleep after lunch leaving all the plates on the table, then took over the living room watching endless episodes of Coronation St/Eastenders/any other soap. They did not get involved with my children at all. My kids were a bit fed up, my husband was very fed up, and I felt embarrassed, and exhausted from all the work. When we have DH's family over, everyone mucks in, so it really highlights the difference.
I know you must be thinking, "why didn't she say something?" But I really don't like confrontation, and I didn't want a big argument spoiling the kids day further.
My problem is, my dad has already announced (without me even asking) that he will be coming down this xmas, which I don't mind so much, as I still feel a need to keep an eye on him, but I know I can't do another year with my brother. He has another girlfriend now, and he will just assume he can do a repeat of last year. My DH will not entertain it, even if I am a bit of a pushover. I need to decide what I am going to say. I need advice.

Ineedmorechocolatenow Wed 07-Oct-09 13:05:08

Say it's not okay. You're spending the day with DH's family, it's someone else's turn....

Bleh Wed 07-Oct-09 13:07:01

I agree with Ineedmore. Just say you have already made plans with DH's family, as you didn't get to spend xmas with them the previous two years. Maybe ask DH's family if your DF can join, so that he's not alone. Your DB can sort himself out.

fircone Wed 07-Oct-09 13:08:28

Yes, just say you will be taking your dad to in-laws and spending Christmas there. The end.

randomtask Wed 07-Oct-09 13:09:13

I'd call your brother and mention in passing that you're looking forward to having Christmas just with your little family and parents.

You need to say something as otherwise he'll just turn up again. Or, do it and tell him how tired you were last year so if he would like to come, he'll need to muck in. If you're lucky, he'll want to spend it with his new girlfriend.

Good luck, Christmas is a mine field in my house too!

abitpearshaped Wed 07-Oct-09 13:18:46

Thanks, I really appreciate your advice. I'm really not looking forward to speaking to my brother, I need to "grow some balls"!

franke Wed 07-Oct-09 13:25:46

Christmas makes these kind of problems even bigger than they are doesn't it? I think fircone's suggestion is the best - there's not really anything your brother can say to it. He really can't be offended surely. But I'd speak to him sooner rather than later just so that he can make alternative arrangements. If it would make you feel better about everything could you suggest he comes after lunch on Boxing Day or something?

Jamieandhismagictorch Wed 07-Oct-09 13:26:46

Just remember : Say what you are going to do. Do not explain. Do not apologise. Repeat as necessary.

Good Luck

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