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Dreading Christmas lunch

49 replies

CrazyMoma · 22/12/2019 10:54

AIBU - Christmas dinner is in our house. Issue is my brother & family usually turn up late. They kinda expect my kids who are older to watch their kids, my kids are getting fed up & feel they are expected to watch the kids all day & feel "dumped on". My DH is fed up with this & has said if they aren't here on time for dinner then they will have to wait until the buffet in the night. We tend to have our Christmas dinner late so no-one feels rushed on Christmas morning. Cos their kids can be demanding we tend not to have a family game after dinner cos one of them with kick off & my DH & kids are totally fed up. I totally understand what my DH & kids are saying love my DB & kids dearly, & tbh I am fed up with it too but at the same time don't want to be fighting about Christmas day. I know i'm kinda being a door-mat but, i'm trying to keep the peace at the same time totally dreading Christmas day - any advice.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

92 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
AllergicToAMop · 22/12/2019 10:55

Have next Christmas without them. Why should EVERYONE be miserable? It's supposed to be nice time...

AllergicToAMop · 22/12/2019 10:56

Knowing next year will be peaceful will make getting through this one much easier

Atalune · 22/12/2019 10:56

Don’t be a doormat. Speak to your brother.

Say... dinner is at x time. It is very rude of them to be late.

PlAy the games and if the nieces or nephews kickoff ignore it so your brother steps up.

This is a misery entirely of your own making. Don’t through your family under the bus for the sKe if y I r brother. You’re being a martyr.

gobbynorthernbird · 22/12/2019 10:57

Why are you inviting these people and putting your DH and DC through a shit Xmas?

TheHootiestChristmasOwl · 22/12/2019 10:59

So because you won’t speak to your brother your kids get a shit Christmas? That’s not very fair on them is it.

Aquamarine1029 · 22/12/2019 11:00

My DH is fed up with this & has said if they aren't here on time for dinner then they will have to wait until the buffet in the night.

Yes to this and make it clear to your brother today that lunch starts at whatever time, and you will not be waiting.

As for your children being forced to watch after his kids, put an end to that, too. It's time to stick up for your own family. Your brother needs to mind his. If he doesn't like it, he can go home.

TheHootiestChristmasOwl · 22/12/2019 11:00

Your brother doesn’t seem to care about keeping the peace does he?

nowaypose · 22/12/2019 11:02

Don’t invite him next year and make the rules clear this year. Message him beforehand to say dinner is at x time so please be on time, we won’t be waiting for you.

greenlavender · 22/12/2019 11:03

You should look out for your family first. Tell DB what your expectations are.

Ginfordinner · 22/12/2019 11:03

Agree with pp. Tell him that dinner will be served at x time, and you will start without them if they are late.

simplekindoflife · 22/12/2019 11:07

Tell them dinner will be on the table 2/3 hours before you actually plan to eat.

Tell them you're kids aren't feeling well and will be having some quiet time in their rooms after dinner. Tell your kids about this and they can tell you they're 'not feeling well' at any point they've had enough.

If you really want rid, your kids could announce they also feel sick and it must be that norovirus bug that's been going round!

Oysterbabe · 22/12/2019 11:09

How old are his kids?

Drum2018 · 22/12/2019 11:11

Why on earth did you invite them if they have form for ruining the day for your family? If they are late do not wait for them. Have your dinner and put some out on plates for them - less than they would normally take themselves just to rub it in! Don't bother with a starter for them. If they turn up in the middle of you all eating tell them they can reheat their own. Do not get up and fuss over them. Tell your kids they are free to go off to their rooms if they want to escape the smaller cousins. It is not fair that they are expected to entertain and mind the younger ones. If the younger ones misbehave and parents do nothing then you should discipline them. After all it's your house, your rules so stop allowing your brother and his family to rule the roost. And don't invite them again. It's so unfair on your Dh and kids that they cannot even look forward to the day because you obvioulsy insist on having your inconsiderate family there.

TidyDancer · 22/12/2019 11:12

How does it come about that your DCs are babysitters? This is quite important in dealing with it. If the DCs are physically handed over and your DB says 'would you mind looking after....?' etc then it's a flat no when it happens. If it's that he's ignoring them and your DCs are expected to step in then you probably need to preempt it by having a word before the day and then reinforcing if he tries it on when they've arrived.

Bottom line, your kids don't deserve a shit time because you won't stand up to your DB.

wibdib · 22/12/2019 11:16

And also point out that he (and partner?) need to make sure they’re looking after their own dc as you have promised your dc that they don’t have to watch them this year - is there something that they (your dc) want to do or watch that isn’t suitable for them so that you can say that you’ve promised they can watch [unsuitable dvd] or play [unsuitable game] which is their Christmas treat and that it’s not fair their Christmas memories are not of happy times doing fun things with their presents but being used as unpaid childcare and trying to make sure their own presents/rooms don’t get trashed by their little cousins while their uncle ignores the chaos (insert how they actually feel here).

With any luck they might decide not to come and your own family can have a lovely chilled relaxed Christmas!

Fr0g · 22/12/2019 11:17

agree with drum2018

if you do invite them again, make it for a shorter/ later part of the day - supper or teatime

CrazyMoma · 22/12/2019 11:23

Thanks for all of yours comments. I'm gonna speak to my brother & on Christmas day will make sure my family have a good day. Smile

OP posts:
PickAChew · 22/12/2019 11:25

If dinner is at 2, serve dinner at 2. You're not a cafe.

mymadworld · 22/12/2019 11:25

I'm assuming your nieces &/or nephews are little and the whole late lunch thing is the issue. That said, rocking up when you fancy and expecting to be fed isn't on either so maybe you need to speak and agree a compromise that works for both families. If you don't speak up now you will all have a miserable Christmas which seems ridiculous for the sake of a 5 minute conversation HmmConfused

BuffaloCauliflower · 22/12/2019 11:28

Be very clear with your brother what time lunch is and you’ll start without them if they’re not there.

How do your DC come to be babysitters?

CoffeeBeansGalore · 22/12/2019 11:35

It's not too late to cancel them if you ring today. They still have today, tomorrow & Tuesday to go and shop.
If you don't want to be honest, then you are all down with a bug & really won't be well enough to host. Then do not invite them for Christmas day next year. If you must have them over, make it another day. & put locks on your DCs bedroom doors so they can escape in peace.
You are responsible for your own children's happiness, not your brother's.

myrtleberry · 22/12/2019 11:43

Does your brother have to travel far on Xmas day?


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birdsarecute45 · 22/12/2019 11:46


If they are late that is their business.

My attentiuon seeking cousin is always late for things. One Christmas we finally said fuck it and started when we said we would start. The meal was finished THREE hours later when she finally turned up. Sat with a face like a slapped arse all night, but she was not late again.

NoseyBuggerMummy · 22/12/2019 11:46

I wouldn't cancel last minute that is definitely rude. I would make sure your kids aren't dumped with their kids though. Come up with a plan to ensure it doesn't happen - couldn't you just chuck a film on for the little ones? Text to say dinner is going to be 2pm on the dot this year and you want to eat on time. Then you can start at 2pm.

If the kids are little I think a little adaptation is to be expected so long games etc might not work unless one of you is on kid watch. Maybe next year you could just have them for a buffet in the evening.

Jeezoh · 22/12/2019 11:49

Tell them what time dinner is and stick to it. Don’t let your kids be expected to watch their kids, you and your DH need to step in if you think that’s happening.

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