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Missing out on my family Christmas again

217 replies

ChristmasbloodyChristmas · 25/11/2019 15:40

I've name changed as this could be quite outing. This is first married Christmas with DH, obviously not our first Christmas, we've been together for six years. We live in The Midlands and the whole of my family live in Scotland, about seven hours drive. DH has two adult children (18 and 20) and I don't have children. Every year I've visited my family either between Christmas and New Year or in January as I understand how important it is for a father to see his children at Christmas. As we're around for Christmas we do see the rest of his family on Christmas Eve or Boxing Day, making the whole of Christmas a DH family event, while I don't get to see my family until after the event. I'll be honest, its not ideal but it's one of the perks of being a childfree stepmum. This year, his children have their own plans, girlfriends/friends but we still can't change the plans, we still have to be around for all of his family events, while I don't get to see my parents, siblings, nieces and nephews until after all the lovely Christmas feeling is over.

AIBU? Please please don't say I chose this life when I met him. Six years ago when I met him I wouldn't have expected to have to give up seeing my own family at Christmas forever. It simply wasn't the choice I made.

OP posts:
GreenTulips · 25/11/2019 16:57

I also think you should go ..... he’s not going to see the reality unless he lives it.

He has a choice, he’s choosing to wait .... the children could well go out drinking Christmas Eve (as we did) and stat in bed till lunchtime Christmas Day, and then be too tired to socialise.

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter · 25/11/2019 16:57

I agree with BumbleBeee69 and PPs that have said similar, things are ok on the surface because you do all of the compromising.

I'm wondering if his behaviour has something to do with Disney Dad guilt.

Elle7rose · 25/11/2019 16:58

Could you maybe go up on 27th December for a few days/a week either with or without your DH? Just say that you've decided to go to see your family and would love it if you could go together as you are married. Explain that you're looking forward to seeing his kids Christmas Eve, Day and/or Boxing day and looking forward to seeing your nieces and nephews on 27th.

Rubyroost · 25/11/2019 16:58

Genuinely can't believe that therea people on mumsnet who want to infantilise 18 year oldsHmm

aSofaNearYou · 25/11/2019 16:58

It is clearly the perfect year to go and see your family as his children have other plans, he is being selfish if he can't see that.

They are not children anymore either, they should be able to cope with their parents having other plans ie visiting your family, going off together just the two of you etc.

It sounds like he's setting you up for a lifetime of sacrifices for his adult children as though they were still little dependants, and it really shouldn't be that way.

Pinksmyfavoritecolour · 25/11/2019 16:58

How about asking his children to meet for breakfast/early lunch somewhere they like Christmas Eve with the plan to leave early afternoon, get a good part of the journey done Christmas Eve afternoon/evening, stay in a travelodge, then the rest of the journey early Christmas Day morning so your at your family in time for lunch, Christmas Day and Boxing Day with your family, then travel back in one go the day after, also if you both can share driving it won’t seem quite so bad.

lowlandLucky · 25/11/2019 16:59

They are not children, maybe he needs to be told this.

NoSquirrels · 25/11/2019 16:59

Can you cut out the middle man and ask his kids directly when they want to see you, and plan your Scottish trip around that?

Why not do this?

“Your Dad and I are thinking of going to Scotland over Christmas. Can we have a celebration the weekend before?”

They’re being selfish not to firm up plans; your DH is being selfish not going with you; you’re allowed to be selfish too if you like!

mumof2masterofnone · 25/11/2019 17:00

I also say go to Scotland on your own!

You won't get many christmases while your nieces and nephews are young... your husband is being very selfish.

Howyiz · 25/11/2019 17:00

Tell him to make concrete plans with his kids, and you will plan your trip around that.

DarlingNikita · 25/11/2019 17:00

Genuinely can't believe that there are Mumsnet posters who think an 18 year old is a grown adult who doesn't need to see their parents at Christmas.

I started spending Christmas away from my parents at uni age, so about 18. Admittedly it was at least partly because life in the parental home was miserable from when I was about 11, which may not be the case here; but anyway, 18 is plenty old enough to want an independent Christmas. And they're intending on spending a lot of the time without their dad anyway, by the sounds of it.

RuggerHug · 25/11/2019 17:00

Well if they don't know yet are they willing to accept you won't be around from the 23rd to 27th or whatever works for you? You can't just stay in all of Christmas in case they don't have somewhere else to go! How does he think he'll feel if you do that and they don't make time at all until it's all over?

GreenTulips · 25/11/2019 17:01

Could you maybe go up on 27th December for a few days/a week either with or without your DH?

OP clearly said she does this already and wants to spend actual Christmas Day with her family.

katewhinesalot · 25/11/2019 17:02

If not this year then next year you should go, with or without him.

NoSquirrels · 25/11/2019 17:02

It's infuriating but not worth the effort of being stressed about.

Actually, it’s terrifically rude of them and your DH should tell them so.

ThisIsSunrise · 25/11/2019 17:02

At 18 and 20 they are both young enough to still want to see their dad but old enough to know that plans can be made and stuck to if it is important for everyone concerned. The response you have had so far from both your DH and his children is that your needs simply do not matter.

Put your foot down. See them on a specific agreed day (Christmas Eve or Day) and drive to be with your family on Boxing Day. The roads are always lovely and quiet that day anyway, and it might even be a shorter drive than usual.

Again, put your foot down.

Aderyn19 · 25/11/2019 17:03

He has children, but he also has a wife. Your needs are important too. It's not like his kids are tiny. I know you don't want to but I'd leave him alone and go to Scotland. You are constantly putting him first but he is never doing the same for you. He married you and he owes you some consideration.

SunsetBoulevard3 · 25/11/2019 17:04

Would it be possible to invite some of your family down to be with you and your husband at Xmas? Or take the adult children to Scotland with you? I think it’s completely unreasonable that you are expected not to spend Xmas with your own family ever again. He needs to make some compromises. You need to stop letting him dictate the terms.

ChristmasbloodyChristmas · 25/11/2019 17:04

Very interesting comments on this thread about how its working because I do all the compromising. I've read so many threads on MN where the step mum is flamed for not totally compromising everything for her step family. I'm somewhere in the middle, I don't entirely compromise everything and do have my own life, but if it's a big decision and the kids are involved ultimately I give in. I've been lead to believe that this is how it should be for a step mum.

OP posts:
Chloemol · 25/11/2019 17:06

Why not ask his children if they are intending to see him as you would like to go to Scotland, see what they say, they maybe happy for you both to go

Mix56 · 25/11/2019 17:06

Also, you see his Dc & family all year round. You should really go & spend Christmas with your own family. They will be gone before you blink.

GreenTulips · 25/11/2019 17:07

That’s not how not is as a parent, why would you think that as a step parent?

I live away from family and my younger teens have the choice to visit or not, I’m going regardless, they come or stay with dad.

They don’t get to choose if I go or not.

ChristmasbloodyChristmas · 25/11/2019 17:07

I've spoken to my family about spending Christmas down here. We couldn't manage to have them all though so it would mean splitting the family up. My parents are in their 80's so it's not fair to ask them to travel so far. I love going 'home' to Scotland and it's my chance to go and enjoy it so it works all round.

OP posts:
OctoberLovers · 25/11/2019 17:08

Go and be with your family

SunsetBoulevard3 · 25/11/2019 17:08

I wonder if your husband doesn’t actually want to spend Xmas with your family and that’s part of the issue?

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