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Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO?

CJ2008

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...and pets, of course.

It used to be such a given for me that of course, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, we spend with family.

Whether with mine, or DH's, family.

I don't feel that way automatically any more.

In the last few years I've longed for a holiday at home, just with DH and the kitties.

But every year there's a reason why we feel we can't/shouldn't - somebody had a bad year, or got sick, or...there's always something that makes me feel guilty at the end.

There's no reason to not do holidays with our families - we don't get into squabbles, everything's fine, we get along, we have a nice time - I just don't...want to. I think part of it is like I've mentioned previously I'm getting more and more introverted as I get older. I need more peace and quiet, more alone time.

But of course family is getting older and who knows how many more years there will be of being able to even have the choice of doing family gatherings. So...there goes the guilt again of course.

Family is already starting to ask what we're doing and I am already feeling anxious about having to commit / answer. But I know if I don't answer I'll start to get hounded. :(

Do you ever want to spend holidays alone, even if you get along perfectly fine with your family? And if yes, did you ever actually do it?
 

telephone89

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

yes! I really want to go away for Christmas. It's just too expensive.

Christmas for us is so busy. Both of our families live in town, just far from us. So we usually do my family first, because we have an afternoon 'dinner'. Hang out with them for a bit, and then go to his family who always throw a big party (like 50 people). My family is mad because we leave early, they are always mad because we already ate, arrived late, etc. I'm thinking I might start alternating just to avoid so much of the busyness. I like to relax over the holidays!

eta - we wouldn't be able to stay in town and not go visit anyone, unless we were deathly ill or something.
 

sonnyjane

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

I do. I haven't spent Christmas or Thanksgiving with anyone other than my DH and cat since we got married in 2008.
 

monarch64

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

Sometimes.

My brother and SIL often do their own thing for Thanksgiving. Last year I hosted just my parents for the first time. For the past several years, my husband and I (and now our daughter) have spent most of Thanksgiving Day putzing around in the kitchen, having a cocktail, listening to music, just enjoying the day by ourselves until dinnertime. It's kind of the best of both worlds.

I can assure you my brother feels absolutely no guilt. Why should anyone feel guilty? That's what Christmas is for. LOL :lol:
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

telephone89 said:
eta - we wouldn't be able to stay in town and not go visit anyone, unless we were deathly ill or something.

OK so...can't be done, without actually being deathly ill or wanting to die. :D

sonnyjane|1446662716|3945675 said:
I do. I haven't spent Christmas or Thanksgiving with anyone other than my DH and cat since we got married in 2008.

REALLY.

But do you have to travel far (many driving hours, or plane, etc.) or are they close in distance?
 

sonnyjane

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

CJ2008|1446663151|3945678 said:
telephone89 said:
eta - we wouldn't be able to stay in town and not go visit anyone, unless we were deathly ill or something.

OK so...can't be done, without actually being deathly ill or wanting to die. :D

sonnyjane|1446662716|3945675 said:
I do. I haven't spent Christmas or Thanksgiving with anyone other than my DH and cat since we got married in 2008.

REALLY.

But do you have to travel far (many driving hours, or plane, etc.) or are they close in distance?

Yeah we're on the other side of the country, but they've never inquired about visiting either so no pressure to save up for a visit. It's delightful.
 

ame

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

Sometimes I just want to not do anything.
 

momhappy

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

Yes and sometimes we do. It's heavenly.....not having to entertain, to please anyone, to go anywhere, to clean up after everyone..... Sure, we do family Holidays too, but we also have our own, little holidays and it's nice.
 

katharath

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

We started doing our own Thanksgiving about 8 years ago. Previously, for a good 25 yrs, almost every holiday of my life was a major production!

Now, Thanksgiving is just DH and I, and our children. (Ok, and the pets, to be very specific). We do the full on, everything made from scratch turkey dinner, using recipes from my mom's side. It's really wonderful. My husband does the hard part, he's the chef in our house - he does the turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and then I do all the other sides. It's a relaxed but fun day in our house, and our kids really love it too.

We have family nearby, siblings with spouses and kids, and I have an uncle and grandparent pretty close. I lived close to my parents up until last year. My point is that I do have family very close by. However, we still keep that holiday just for "us". It's become a tradition, and now we love it. It actually started when my parents got their season tickets to the Dallas Cowboys, and started missing every thanksgiving for football games. DH and I decided to do our own thing. Now, when family tries to get us to change our mind, we just say no - we like it the way it is, we've created our own tradition and we're sticking to it.

Christmas is a bit different. We do most of the holiday at our home with just us, but we will go for either a Christmas Eve dinner or a Christmas day dinner with my parents and siblings and some extended family.
 

kenny

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

I prefer just my SO and me.

He preferres 2,154,215,487 relatives crammed into a 200 sq ft living room. :knockout:
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

kenny|1446670325|3945740 said:
I prefer just my SO and me.

He preferres 2,154,215,487 relatives crammed into a 200 sq ft living room. :knockout:

So kenny what do you normally end up doing (I do remember a certain thread about turkey being left out on the counter for hours at a time..) most of the time? Do you sometimes do just your SO and you, or no?
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

katharath|1446669990|3945735 said:
Now, when family tries to get us to change our mind, we just say no - we like it the way it is, we've created our own tradition and we're sticking to it.

That's wonderful.
 

azstonie

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

LOL, Kenny, funny!!

When I moved to Alaska that ended the mandatory family holidays. THANK GOD.

I had the best holiday season EVER there because I spent the holidays with my DH and our friends!!!

When we moved back to the Lower 48, it was FAMILY TIME once again, UGH. Tension, nasty cracks, passive-aggressive BS, spending too much money on a$$#oles, spending all my time trying to make people happy, using all my vacation time from work on same.

Now that I'm NC (No Contact) with my family my DH is so happy during the holiday season now, and I've got 10 tons of pressure lifted off me at the same time. We ate WHAT we want, WHEN we want, with WHOM we want :lol:
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

azstonie|1446673139|3945767 said:
spending too much money on a$$#oles

:lol:
 

katharath

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

CJ2008|1446672120|3945761 said:
katharath|1446669990|3945735 said:
Now, when family tries to get us to change our mind, we just say no - we like it the way it is, we've created our own tradition and we're sticking to it.

That's wonderful.

Thanks CJ :)

I have to admit that we got a little help with starting the whole thing - for example, when my parents started going to football games instead of doing Thanksgiving with us, we felt like it was perfectly fine for us to prioritize in our own way, too. So it made it much easier to say, "sorry, but this is what we do now". Now our holiday is always so nice and tension free, it really works for us. (DH and I get along very well with my parents, so it's not that we don't want to see them, but we don't get along with a couple of other family members - you know, the types that make holidays not so fun).

I do hope you try this type of relaxed holiday for yourself, and see what you think!
 

missy

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

Occasionally and depends on the holiday. I LOVE Thanksgiving and we host it so for me it is perfect. I love being at home and I love hosting Thanksgiving even though it is a LOT of work. Especially for my dh since he does all the cooking and baking. But I sure do enjoy all the leftovers :lickout: and it is fun hosting my family.

The other holidays are OK but often I would prefer being at home with my dh and the kitties but in my family that would be very difficult to do without causing lots of problems. My mom and dad feel the holidays are important to celebrate with loved ones and to them it is not optional. One Christmas/Hanukah my dh and I spent at this very swanky resort called The Point in the Adirondacks. It was amazing. The only way we got out of it was that it was a very expensive gift from my dh's boss at the time and my mom couldn't argue with that.

In general we always spend Christmas/Hanukah, Passover/Easter and New Year's Eve and Thanksgiving with my family.

The holidays we no longer spend with my family because I put my foot down (because I much prefer being at our beach house during these holidays and spending some of them with friends) are Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day. So at least I got out of those without too much trouble. I just said I am sorry but we are no longer able to spend these holidays with the family. My dh and I love my parents and my sister and my nieces but sometimes just want to spend the holidays with just the 2 of us or with friends. Nothing against anyone in my family. My parents are pretty great in general though my mom and I butt heads a lot because we are too similar in many ways and we are both very stubborn too.

However, I absolutely hate New Year's Eve and that is my sister's holiday to host. And believe me we have tried getting out of it but my dad got involved (and he is so laid back and never gets involved in these things) and there was no way we could stop going. It's like we were committing the biggest sin not wanting to spend NYE with my family. But we made a concession and we leave by 9PM usually now. It's just too late a holiday event for me and we also have a drive from my house to my sister's house and back and I don't like being on the road during certain holidays NYE being one of them.

I cannot wait because Thanksgiving is coming up woohoo! My favorite holiday of all. :appl:
 

kenny

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

CJ2008|1446672049|3945760 said:
kenny|1446670325|3945740 said:
I prefer just my SO and me.

He preferres 2,154,215,487 relatives crammed into a 200 sq ft living room. :knockout:

So kenny what do you normally end up doing (I do remember a certain thread about turkey being left out on the counter for hours at a time..) most of the time? Do you sometimes do just your SO and you, or no?

About 60% of the time we are at his parents house for either C-Day or T-Day.
Never both. :appl:
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

katharath|1446676212|3945790 said:
CJ2008|1446672120|3945761 said:
katharath|1446669990|3945735 said:
Now, when family tries to get us to change our mind, we just say no - we like it the way it is, we've created our own tradition and we're sticking to it.

That's wonderful.

Thanks CJ :)

I have to admit that we got a little help with starting the whole thing - for example, when my parents started going to football games instead of doing Thanksgiving with us, we felt like it was perfectly fine for us to prioritize in our own way, too. So it made it much easier to say, "sorry, but this is what we do now". Now our holiday is always so nice and tension free, it really works for us. (DH and I get along very well with my parents, so it's not that we don't want to see them, but we don't get along with a couple of other family members - you know, the types that make holidays not so fun).

I do hope you try this type of relaxed holiday for yourself, and see what you think!

Still, though, I'm sure many would have "given in" by now - so I'm glad to see you're sticking to it being that it's what you really want to do.

I think I'd have very little trouble saying "sorry this is what we do now" if someone else had started the tradition of not being together for the holidays.

I feel like you have the best of both worlds because if one year for whatever reason you DO want to something with them, you can.
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

missy|1446677150|3945796 said:
Occasionally and depends on the holiday. I LOVE Thanksgiving and we host it so for me it is perfect. I love being at home and I love hosting Thanksgiving even though it is a LOT of work. Especially for my dh since he does all the cooking and baking. But I sure do enjoy all the leftovers :lickout: and it is fun hosting my family.

The other holidays are OK but often I would prefer being at home with my dh and the kitties but in my family that would be very difficult to do without causing lots of problems. My mom and dad feel the holidays are important to celebrate with loved ones and to them it is not optional. One Christmas/Hanukah my dh and I spent at this very swanky resort called The Point in the Adirondacks. It was amazing. The only way we got out of it was that it was a very expensive gift from my dh's boss at the time and my mom couldn't argue with that.

In general we always spend Christmas/Hanukah, Passover/Easter and New Year's Eve and Thanksgiving with my family.

The holidays we no longer spend with my family because I put my foot down (because I much prefer being at our beach house during these holidays and spending some of them with friends) are Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day. So at least I got out of those without too much trouble. I just said I am sorry but we are no longer able to spend these holidays with the family. My dh and I love my parents and my sister and my nieces but sometimes just want to spend the holidays with just the 2 of us or with friends. Nothing against anyone in my family. My parents are pretty great in general though my mom and I butt heads a lot because we are too similar in many ways and we are both very stubborn too.

However, I absolutely hate New Year's Eve and that is my sister's holiday to host. And believe me we have tried getting out of it but my dad got involved (and he is so laid back and never gets involved in these things) and there was no way we could stop going. It's like we were committing the biggest sin not wanting to spend NYE with my family. But we made a concession and we leave by 9PM usually now. It's just too late a holiday event for me and we also have a drive from my house to my sister's house and back and I don't like being on the road during certain holidays NYE being one of them.

I cannot wait because Thanksgiving is coming up woohoo! My favorite holiday of all. :appl:

OMG Thanksgiving at your house for some reason sounds so cozy and wonderful. I totally envision your husband cooking while you set up a beautiful table and the kitties (and dogs right?) watch you guys.

I know it's a little early yet, but in case, I hope this Thanksgiving is just wonderful for you missy.

See, this is what's "bothering" me.

All my life I felt those same pressures - we need to do this, we need to do that, etc. The very few times - very few - we did something not with the family it was agony to work up the courage to tell them.

And I see that everyone has these same types of pressures, just as intense as mine "there's no way we could say no" etc.

In the last year or so I've grown more and more resentful of these pressures. Just as I need to be getting NICER and MORE accommodating to my parents and my family since they're getting older I'm getting meaner. I'm still just as petrified but have also found it easier to hold long periods of silence (just texting, rather than calling). It's become easier to separate myself. What the heck is that?

Maybe I'm the ahole. :???:

Like I said - I really need to talk to someone. :(
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

kenny|1446677782|3945802 said:
CJ2008|1446672049|3945760 said:
kenny|1446670325|3945740 said:
I prefer just my SO and me.

He preferres 2,154,215,487 relatives crammed into a 200 sq ft living room. :knockout:

So kenny what do you normally end up doing (I do remember a certain thread about turkey being left out on the counter for hours at a time..) most of the time? Do you sometimes do just your SO and you, or no?

About 60% of the time we are at his parents house for either C-Day or T-Day.
Never both. :appl:

Awesome, kenny.

Did you have negotiate this or is it by coincidence?
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

sonnyjane|1446664579|3945691 said:
It's delightful.

For some reason this really made me smile out loud sonny.

Because it's exactly how I'd describe it.

momhappy - sounds lovely.

And ame - I know what you mean. For a few years I lived alone in a different state and that's what I often did. Spent Thanksgiving or Christmas with the cat. It was awesome.
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

telephone89|1446662396|3945670 said:
eta - we wouldn't be able to stay in town and not go visit anyone, unless we were deathly ill or something.

Right. It can be done technically...but not...

monarch - I don't know - in my family Easter Thanksgiving Christmas NYE - all equally guilt producing ::)
 

zoebartlett

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

We've done it but it was more out of necessity. A few years ago, my parents were traveling and we were moving or I was sick, so we spent the holidays alone. I wasn't crazy about it but we dealt.

Usually, we go to my in-laws on Christmas Eve, since that's when his large family all gets together. We have a potluck and a Yankee swap. On Christmas, each of his siblings and their individual families do their own thing, and my husband and I go to my parents' house for a much smaller gathering. That's what I'm used to so when it doesn't happen, something feels off.

Now that I have a baby niece who lives across the country, Christmas will be very different, I have a feeling we'll be traveling a lot more. A long as I have a few buffer days before returning to work and I get a little down time, I should be good.
 

stracci2000

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

My family lives across the country. DH's mom and dad are 3 hours away.
So holidays are very relaxed and cozy. It's just us and the cats.
I still make the whole turkey dinner thing, but there is no pressure of hosting friends and family.
And we have leftovers all week!
The holidays will be even more enjoyable this year, because I recently left a stressful job.
After 15 years, I will finally have the Friday after Thankgiving off! :dance:
 

kenny

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

CJ2008|1446679311|3945812 said:
kenny|1446677782|3945802 said:
CJ2008|1446672049|3945760 said:
kenny|1446670325|3945740 said:
I prefer just my SO and me.

He preferres 2,154,215,487 relatives crammed into a 200 sq ft living room. :knockout:

So kenny what do you normally end up doing (I do remember a certain thread about turkey being left out on the counter for hours at a time..) most of the time? Do you sometimes do just your SO and you, or no?

About 60% of the time we are at his parents house for either C-Day or T-Day.
Never both. :appl:

Awesome, kenny.

Did you have negotiate this or is it by coincidence?

Coincidence.
 

zoebartlett

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

This year I'm actually leaving my husband on Christmas to travel with my parents to see my niece, my sister, and my BIL. I hate leaving my husband but he's relatively new at his job and he won't have much PTO saved up by then. We'll still go to my in-laws on Christmas Eve, and he says he won't mind being alone on Christmas, but I feel awful about it.
 

Rhea

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

I moved out of the country so no pressure there! We don't celebrate any holiday other than Thanksgiving with friends so it's basically a dinner party with Brits who think it's different and interesting and ask questions about it that I don't know the answer to.

We alternate Christmases but have long discussed having a 3rd rotation of just us which I think we'll do one of these days. We're only 30 minutes drive away from DH's family so we'd need to leave the country. Funny enough, that's exactly what we're doing this year but we're taking the in-laws with us - just the 4 of us some place warm for a week. None of us want to spend it with DH's extended family. Winter sun here we come!!

No other holidays celebrated here. I live in a country where there's no Independence Day and we're not Christian so no Easter or anything like that. Just Christmas. I can deal with Christmas.
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

Zoe|1446683142|3945839 said:
We've done it but it was more out of necessity. A few years ago, my parents were traveling and we were moving or I was sick, so we spent the holidays alone. I wasn't crazy about it but we dealt.

Usually, we go to my in-laws on Christmas Eve, since that's when his large family all gets together. We have a potluck and a Yankee swap. On Christmas, each of his siblings and their individual families do their own thing, and my husband and I go to my parents' house for a much smaller gathering. That's what I'm used to so when it doesn't happen, something feels off.

Now that I have a baby niece who lives across the country, Christmas will be very different, I have a feeling we'll be traveling a lot more. A long as I have a few buffer days before returning to work and I get a little down time, I should be good.

OK so for you you'd RATHER spend with family, etc., not just with your SO.

I understand that feeling too. We have friends that would not like to spend it just by themselves at all, especially if it out of necessity and not by choice. They love family around.

And I don't know that I would want to do every holiday and every year with just my SO and the cats - but I would love it if we really had the choice without any pressure at all. If whatever we chose to do was welcomed by everyone and we could work around it. Like "Oh if you guys won't be here for Christmas then maybe some time January we could do a dinner or something all together." That would be so nice.
 

CJ2008

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

stracci2000|1446683198|3945840 said:
My family lives across the country. DH's mom and dad are 3 hours away.
So holidays are very relaxed and cozy. It's just us and the cats.
I still make the whole turkey dinner thing, but there is no pressure of hosting friends and family.
And we have leftovers all week!
The holidays will be even more enjoyable this year, because I recently left a stressful job.
After 15 years, I will finally have the Friday after Thankgiving off! :dance:

OMG how fun! :appl:

I'm excited for you you're going to enjoy this year so much!
 

zoebartlett

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Re: Do you ever want to spend the holidays just with your SO

Oops, sorry, CJ, I read your original question and then went off on my own tangent.
 
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