My MIL is mad that I wanna spend Christmas with just my kids: Advice?

To start, my husband & I have two kids under four years old and live in the same town as both of our parents (the kid’s grandparents). Several months ago my hubs & I had a conversation regarding holidays. Every single holiday is spent running around to make sure we see both families, it’s stressful for me, and it’s really making me hate holidays instead of enjoying them - this includes Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, Halloween, Mother’s & Father’s Day. When we spoke about it, I expressed my desire to start spending Christmas at home with our children, only starting NEXT year so that we can create our own family traditions. He agreed, and the conversation was over. We shared this news with my family; they agreed it was a good idea and had absolutely no complaints. Well…I told his mother today; she didn’t say much, so I assumed it was a done deal. My husband gets home from work & I find out his dad sent him a text, and everyone is now upset with me. My husband now agrees with his parents, saying we should spend Christmas with them, and when he was talking to his dad, he basically threw me under the bus as if he hadn’t agreed to this months prior. I’m leaving out a LOT of the bad guy accusations that were thrown at me, but in short, I want to know… If something like this was incredibly important to you, but also incredibly important to the other party, how do you handle it? This is the only request I’ve ever made that involves them. I show up & do everything they ask of us. But knowing how they are, if I try to stand my ground (like I REALLY want to do), this could be the splitting point of my relationship with them (and possibly), my husband. I don’t think it’s wrong for me to want one holiday with my kids. But here I feel like I have to be the one to suck it up for the sake of someone else’s feelings. So, what would you do in my shoes?


Tell them to come to u


If your husband already agrees then he needs to be a man and explain that to his own parents then instead of making it look like it’s just you wanting to change things and make your own traditions. He should have had your back instead of how he handled it.


Spend Christmas at home and Christmas eve with them! that’s what we do with my in laws and it works for them.


I’d tell him I don’t appreciate being thrown under the bus. And then invite them to spend Christmas at your house. You will be at home & not rushed… and they still are involved. If they choose not to come, that’s on them.


This used to happen to us. I finally decided to host the holidays at our house or maybe do Christmas Eve at ur in-laws and Christmas at ur house?


Pick another day to spend with them. You’re allowed to start your own traditions.


Yes. Start a family “tradition” of taking your kids and husband away from their family :woman_facepalming:t3: Then when you get divorced you’ll only have your kids every other Christmas to make these tradition with them.


Stand your ground anyway. You are not wrong. Your husbands priority is to you and his children. Even at the risk of hurting feelings. You can’t always cater to your in-laws. It’s time to start your own traditions, regardless of what that looks like to others.


Simple your family your rules!


See if they are open to maybe a fake Christmas before or after so that way you can have Christmas day to do with ur family

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Tell them they can come see you guys.? You guys just aren’t going out of the house.

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We did the same thing a few years ago and it is amazinggg. People can stop by and visit and we do a holiday thing on Christmas eve but we no longer spend Christmas running from house to house. Less stress for us and for the kids who just want to sit and play with their new stuff. We enjoy it so much more.


Simply don’t leave . Tell them that if they want to see y’all then they can stop by the house on Christmas.

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I have a huge family. Christmas is already expensive as is, so what we did last year was everyone put together a little bit of cash (it was only $150 for the night) and rented a little hall! We all pitched in to decorate, everyone would bring food, set up and we even brought a little speaker to play music! Parents brought a gift for their own children from “Santa”. There was room to dance, we had an uncle dress up as Santa for the kids, brought a tree from home and everything. It was so much fun, no one had the stress of not having enough space for anyone, all of our families and friends could fit together! The kids in the family now have these amazing memories, knowing they have so many people who love them and want to be with them on Christmas. Another thing: Plastic plates and everything! Easy clean up, no messy home, it’s great.
It’s amazing to create memories as a little family, but I feel like it’s not good to isolate your children especially during the holidays. It’s not good to isolate yourself, either! Family is so important and these memories will last forever. I think this time of year is time to let go of any grudges or negativity towards anyone and make sure your babies have the best time possible.
You can always have your own little Christmas before or after that as well.


There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to enjoy your holidays with your children. Do not feel guilty. Good luck getting your husband on the same page as you. Maybe plan another day 24th or 26th or whatever and invite his parents over to spend some time with their grandchildren.

Invite them to your house


I’m in the same boat. Last Christmas I told his family if they wanted to see us they could come to our house. Which then turned into us hosting Xmas for his family. I preferred that though rather than spending the day in the car. I did the same thing with Thanksgiving this year. You could always tell them you will spend New Years or another weekend with them to do Xmas.

I could have wrote this myself :grin:
No matter what you do, the damage is done. You can’t please everyone. As mom’s we tend to sacrifice our own happiness. And we need to learn our happiness matters as well. Do what is best for you and your family, regardless of pressure from the in laws.
Merry Christmas!


Only u can decide but as a grandmother I would be heartbroken


We made a compromise. Let the kids be home and open their presents Christmas morning then have dinner with family.

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We picked certain days for each of our families bc of the running around etc. I know how u feel tho, my husband likes to make everyone happy even if it causing hurt feelings. We chose to have Christmas day as our day and stuck to it.

Tell them your door is open and they are very welcome to yours but you want to spend the day where the kids are happy, comfortable and have all their toys ect around them. You’re not being selfish at all. Stand strong on it xx


Spend the morning with your kids & his band. If anyone else wants to see y’all for Christmas, they can come to your house in the afternoon. Win, win

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You aren’t wrong at all… we have several family members that do all their visiting on Christmas Eve and spend Christmas day at home with their kids…or have them come over…I always hated going all over and not actually being able to enjoy the holiday


Christmas about sharing time with family. Got to find middle ground and come to understanding.


I say Thanksgiving and christmas are very very important you don’t have to do the days of my family gets together christmas eve. My daddy almost died a few times in last couple years. The holidays are some of our favorite memories

Stay home with your kids. Your husband cares more about his family. Honey, I tell my husband for the past 3 years go to your family I’m cool. He comes home quick all they want was what did he get them same answer nothing

Offer to Host Christmas. I totally get the feeling, it is an insane amount of work to go back and forth with young children on a holiday. Personally I don’t think it’s wrong to want to spend Christmas Day at your house so your kids can play with their toys, stick to their schedules etc. I would just offer to have everyone else come to you rather than going to them this time. That way you have more control over the environment and your kids get to be in their space.

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I’d love to spend Christmas with family. Unfortunately our families aren’t in the same state as us or even each other. The other holidays are not a big thing but Christmas is. Spend it with family.

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Telp them you will be there at whatever time, only do 1 famiky and tell other family to do a different day.

Growing up my Grandparents would drive half an hour to watch me open my presents. Then they would spend some time with their other grandchildren at their house in the afternoon. These are memories I’ll always cherish as both my Grandparents are gone. If you have young children I wouldn’t want to be traveling around all day. Christmas Day is time at my house with my family. I want me son to wake up, open presents and enjoy his day at his house playing with his presents. You can’t let in laws guilt you. And your husband needs to back you up!

Can you host Christmas? So the family can still be included but you can be in the comfort of your own home? Or maybe rotate like one year is with your family and the next year your husband’s so you don’t have to bounce around. I completely understand how stressful it is, I have a autistic toddler and going to family gatherings at other people’s houses is really stressful, BUT I do think it’s important. I have the best childhood memories of going to my grandma’s or my aunt’s for holidays growing up. I cherish them as my grandparents are no longer here and now that we’ve all grown up we live in different states and can’t get together like we did when we were little. So those memories from my childhood of the family all being together are very special. We ( me and my 2 sisters)would do Christmas morning with just my mom and my dad, then get ready and head to either my grandma’s or my aunt’s house for the rest of the day for dinner and more presents from extended family, each year one of the kids would be “santa” and pass out all the gifts. It was really special and I feel lucky to have had that. While I understand the desire to just have it just you guys in the comfort of your own home, there just is something special about being together as a big family on holidays, especially for kids. It might be worth coming up with a compromise.

I get where you are coming from and how hard it is going place to place for holidays. I also know that grandparents world revolves around their grand babies so I keep that in mind. Invite them over. I’m sure it doesn’t matter what you decide I’m sure your mother in law just wants to be apart and around her grandchildren for Christmas

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We do the 24 with the other families …then the 25 is at home just hubs and kids no one else it’s a relaxed pj day …family didnt like it the first year but now its tradition

We do Christmas at home as well. It’s too taxing on the family as a whole to run around to different homes. We never really had a chance to live in the moment and create our own family memories. What we do is that we schedule Christmas Eve with my in-laws and my family during different time blocks. Once you let them know that you aren’t cutting them out, but making a way that is inclusive for everyone and their schedules it tends to make them more understanding and generally causes less hurt feelings. That way we can celebrate in a more relaxed manner on Christmas day. Good luck to you. It’s only hard the first year, I promise.

Stand your ground! My family use to run all over the place and finally I got tired of it so we stopped :+1: if anyone wants to see us on Christmas they can stop by our house .
Best decision I ever made for my family! We get to hangout in our PJs , kids get to play with there new stuff and NOOOOO running around , no time frame

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Cud u agree to have the actual xmas day just yous then maybe have a grandparents xmas on boxing day?

Running around crazy trying to fit everyone in is exhausting and unnecessary when you have little kids. I used to do it and i got tired of it so i started hosting instead. Christmas Eve was even exhausting with the in-laws.

Tell her to get over it

You can only fit so many christmases in at one time. Stay home and enjoy your self and let him deal w kids and visiting everyone alone.
Maybe start splitting holidays Thanksgiving w one then christmas w the other etc

I’d suggest rotating years with each side or invite everyone to your house

I do the same thing and my husband is on the same page to the point my in-laws came over thanksgivjng to celebrate Christmas. My family will come in January to do the same :woman_shrugging: sorry there’s a new immediate family and you don’t have to do things you don’t want to

Your husband should have defended the decision y’all had made. Stand your ground. It’s exhausting going five billion places.

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They can come to your house if it’s that important :woman_shrugging:t2:

We stopped traveling to house to house and started having holidays at our house.It was very stressful .Now that out kids are older we still have them at our house.Our kids and my husband love to be home

Do what feels best for your immediate family. We stay home for Christmas. That’s our tradition. And one day my kids will have their own traditions.

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We do a game night on Christmas Eve early year we sit around play and have snacks and chat. Then Christmas morning is always just us and the kids. Maybe see if everyone is up for a pot luck dinner u can stay home with the kids still open presents in the morning cook together then have the whole family together for supper that’s what we do then u aren’t rushing around to everyone’s house.

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Have you thought about maybe a compromise? Like maybe have Christmas morning with your husband and kids. Then maybe make it over there for supper or they can come to you place for supper instead?


Holidays are about family celebrating together.
If you live in the same town then Christmas Eve at one in-laws then Christmas day at the other. Celebrate at home another day. Or Celebrate alltogehter at your home both families. Its not worth fighting about. Quality time with family is important and extended family. They wont be here forever create memories for your kids.

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I agree. Running so everyone can see kids is exhausting!!
We do Christmas Eve with my in-laws, Christmas morning and most of the day is spent home just us, then we visit my mom sometime in the afternoon. It was very hard in the beginning to have people understand that we want our own traditions. My husband, like yours, seems to have a problem just agreeing with whoever to “make everyone happy”. He is slowly learning that what he wants/his happiness are valuable as well.

Grandparents can come see us.

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We have always done Christmas eve, with my husbands family. Christmas day with mine. Less driving. Less stress and everyone got to see us. If they didnt want to plan around it and make it easier on us, since were military and have to drive 12+ already. We just didn’t see them… I think family is important, all family. And if they’re willing to see you, you should try to… Atleast for Thanksgiving and Christmas. The other holidays you can utilize as “just you guys, and the kids”. Somewhere there has to be a line that you both agree on. Stand your ground with wanting a holiday or some holidays for just you guys… But be open minded and talk with your husband before getting upset, or causing extra unnecessary drama. It’s your marriage/kids and ultimately yours and your husbands decision.

Stand your ground about Christmas at your house if it is important to you. I had the same issue but I had some compromises I offered.

  1. Do a Christmas Eve Christmas at their house with it agreed in advance you need to be home by this time to put the kids to bed so you will leave at this time.
    Or invite them to your house in the morning to watch the kids open presents ( maybe coffee, muffins, juice). Or invite them to a late lunch but do it at you house

We’re doing Christmas Eve at my mom’s, Christmas morning at our home with the kids, & Christmas night out to dinner with the rest of the family.

You have to consider what your children want also. If they’re used to going to grandmas or doing certain things then Christmas isn’t gunna feel right to them either. Christmas is very exhausting but it’s only a day out of the year. Just try to deal with it & compromise.

Not to make light of your situation but this is absolutely absurd. You do what you want to do with your children for the holidays. Invite them over but you owe those people.nothing. your husband is going to need to understand that.

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We have both sides in town too, my son was three when we stopped making the rounds so that he could stay at his house with the things that Santa brought him in his jammies. My parents made the rounds because it was much easier for them to see ALL of the grands in their element that day but the MIL refused. She missed out and we never blinked.

U need to do what I right for YOU :heart:

Tell them to come to you for xmas. If they are that desperatr u spend it with them we did the calling for years but dont anymore. Its more important to have the day with your kids.

I feel you!! I always stressed and hated holidays. Running here and there. Trying to please everyone. Do you, hubby and kids. My in-laws celebrate on a different day and so does my family. Makes everyone happy.

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I think there’s more to this story. It’s not about Christmas, something else is going on. In our family the kids love spending time with the cousins on the holidays.

My husband and I had the same conversation about 2 years ago. Our boys are getting older and truly just want to be home and play and enjoy Christmas Day!! It is so draining for everyone involved to spend the whole day traveling trying to see everyone that no one really even gets to enjoy it. We told our families and to be honest i didn’t care what anyone had to say lol. We told everyone they are welcome to stop by our house if they’d like. That is what my own family did. And If not, that’s okay too. We try to visit one or two places maybe on Christmas Eve, and maybe a dinner Christmas Day, but that’s it :woman_shrugging:t3: I just feel like it’s important to start your own traditions as a family, and do what is best for you! It is not fair to you not to enjoy your own holiday and family time just to make everyone else happy.

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Girl it’s your family. Set your own traditions. I’m so sick of control freak MILs. I can say this because mine is the queen b of monstrous MILs. Do what makes you happy because if it’s up to them, their happiness is what matters most to them.

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Honestly this year I told my husband to stay home with the kids Christmas Eve (which is normally time with my family) since I’m working and we do Christmas morning together and he can decide the rest of the day as I go back into work later that day. He suggested we have people come to us this year and I liked the idea however my family doesn’t want to wake up early to come to our house and give the kids their gifts so they are going to do it on a day in off of work so we can go over there.

It be more stress to host but I’d say if your starting this next year like I thought I read it then state it now and tell them it would be easier for your children to not be schlepped all over town and they can come after a certain time

We started years ago inviting everyone to our house or we get together on a different day. I’m sure everyone wasn’t happy at first but with little kids I’d like to be able to enjoy my Holidays and not run around like crazy. If it’s a big deal can’t they come to you?

You also need to have a stern word with your husband. He should stand by you!


How about since you all live in the same damn town. You guys invite them over to do christmas at ur place?

I don’t necessarily have advice but I can tell you from experience, if you constantly cave and cater to his family’s feelings, you will grow to resent them. My ex and I were not married but spent several years together and his family was (mostly) pretty good to me, but I always had to give in and put my own family aside for their feelings. Now that we aren’t together, they still treat my daughter and I well but I refuse to have anything to do with their family plans because I’m still so bitter about it!

Same boat here. Except my boyfriend agrees with me and isn’t throwing me under the bus. The way I see it is you have the kids to pack up along with presents etc. It is pretty difficult and exhausting to cram several houses into one day. Christmas shouldn’t be spent like that. It makes more sense for them to come to you because it’s easier. They just have themselves not kids etc coming along. If they can’t understand that it’s difficult for you and makes your holidays miserabe and aren’t willing to come to you then i would personally cut them out all together. It shouldn’t kill them to come over for a few hours. If they just want to be selfish then let them spend Christmas alone

Stand your ground. Also tell your husband to grow a pair. I have done them on different days to please everyone but your still stressed . I came to the point in my life where its like fuck all of them and made myself happy . Your husband will follow suit . And if he still feels like he wants to go let him.

Small kids should be at home on xmas, not out running around accommodating adults.


Maybe Christmas Eve with them and Christmas Day with just you guys

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Have everyone come to your house instead of running around on Christmas. That’s what we did once my oldest hit 4.

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While I understand how hectic it can be and wanting that time you should also be extremely thankful that you have the extended family and that they want to be a part of yours and your children’s holiday memories. Some of my best memories growing up were with my grandparents and my cousins. Maybe offer to host Christmas this year if the problem is just the running around.

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I would also let your husband know you are hurt, angry and disappointed he didnt have your back and if you arent up for the compromises I suggested let him know HE is welcome to go to his parents for Christmas as long as he knows you and the kids will be staying home.


My husband works out of town, so we don’t always get him at home for holidays. We celebrate Christmas with his family when he is home. Christmas Eve LUNCH is always my family. Christmas morning is all about the babies. Santa comes, we open gifts and we spend the day relaxing and allowing the babies to enjoy their presents. Your in-laws have to realize now is the time to start traditions with your babies, as does your family. Make your mind up and stick to it, but offer a compromise. (travel on Christmas Eve, spend Christmas Day at home.)


We do Christmas eve with his dad and Christmas at our home. If they want to do Christmas with us it’s fine but since my family is in Fl and Ga and his is with us in Ky we do our own thing most of the time. I hate being around a lot of people and get really bad anxiety/panic attacks just knowing I have to leave the house. This year I’m going for Christmas eve but if I have another panic attack like I did around Thanksgiving than I will start staying home and just let him take the kids

Compromise. Your married if its important for him to see family on the holidays than it just is. No need to fight about it. Offer to host the holidays. Or do year on year off. Then just talk to him about how u feel about his last minute switch and how you feel he threw u under the bus when u thought he agreed.

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Rotation is important or host xmas. But here it’s a week before Xmas and your just now saying something. Kinda not well planned cause I’m sure to got her hopes and feeling all worked up to see her grand babies.

Can u have them over to u like everyone your parents and gis

When my kids were old enough to realize they got gifts, we stayed home. Not fair to have the kids leave their new toys.

The family you create is more important than the family you came from. Do what you feel is right. Don’t let the parents control you or the situation, you’re grown adult and should be able to do what you please. You need to start making your own traditions at home,that’s what I’d say.


I made this decision years ago. Christmas Day is for my children to open their presents, lounge around in theirP j’s in play with their presents.
If you wanna have a holiday get together we can do it the twentyfourth, the twentythird, the day after but we do not go anywhere Christmas Day and I don’t care whose pissed off.
We are always the one that has to Chase the kids around, be all and over them the entire time when somewhere else because other people don’t child proof like we we do.
We also switch hosting every year.
In laws, grandparents, they all need to understand that they are not the only family. You are now 3 families in one, one hers, one his and the new one once children arrive.
I’d tell the husband he can support you, have my back or he can go and have the holidays with his parents by himself! Don’t ever go Behind back and throw me under the bus because that is such disrespect.
I will call your ass out in front of everybody!

Me personally wouldnt bk down if was discused mths ago. Press ahead with your own xmas, if hubby dont agree send him to his mothers alone. Ask kids where they wish to go

So I’m a ftm and have no advice with my own baby but my parents divorced when I was like 5 and I always liked how they worked out Christmas so maybe this will help.

Christmas Eve was spent with my dads mom, as I got older I would sleepover on the 23rd and spend Christmas Eve with my grandma and it was really special. The whole family came over and we did this great big dinner with the extended family. My dad would drop us off back home and Christmas morning was spent with my mom and then her parents came over for brunch along with some other extended family. After we would go to
My dads house and spend the afternoon with him and then we would go to his cousins house for dinner.

Another option is hosting the holidays yourself or even maybe Christmas Eve for both grandparents to come so that they are coming to you and your not traveling anywhere. We don’t live near our parents anymore so we didn’t even have to consider it but we’ve already talked about when she’s a little older trying to take her up north for Christmas at least one year (I work retail so Christmas is blacked out for time off so it’s prob not likely anyway) but when we do that we’ll be trying to navigate three sets of grandparents along with aunts and uncles.

If it was me and I wanted to spend Christmas at home with the kids and hubby then I would make it a point to spend Christmas Eve with the in laws. Maybe a brunch and presents with one set of parents and then dinner and gifts with the other set of parents. If you are still feeling very rushed to see everyone then maybe do dinner and gifts with one set of parents on the 23rd or 26th.

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I think your husband is a crowd pleaser and should have a taste of what it’s like to be the one running around. Tell him you’re not buying gifts or getting anyone ready. He wants to do thus he can take total control. Post a picture for us of you all home in your house bc I’m sure if the hard work was all on him you wouldn’t go anywhere.


Yes indeed you should spend christmas at home with the kids

We have 5 christmases in two days to go to. Yeah its hard… our family is 1-2 hours away. But we do all this running because our families wont be around forever. Some day, we will miss this. So we do all the running around. Do what’s best for you, but my opinion is…parents and grandparents wont be around forever.

Let him take the kids to his parents and you can relax at home.

My kids and grandkids spend Christmas Eve with just them for the most part. They have their own traditions with PJ’s and hot chocolate and movies, etc. It’s just them. Christmas Day is when they come over and the families get together. If it doesn’t work out, then we get flexible and celebrate a different day. This year, we can’t get everyone together until the weekend after New Years! But we will all be together, the gifts aren’t going anywhere, and who cares it’s not on the exact day. You start your own traditions and if the other family can’t accept that, then they can move on. And your husband should stand his ground. I’m not a very religious person, but even I remember the quote from the bible about the man leaving his family (parents) and being with his wife and putting her first. He needs to grow up and grow a set.

Your husband is a douche and should have had your back. If your in-laws are so hell-bent on seeing your family this Christmas, I’d let them know that they are more than welcome to come to your house Christmas afternoon. Stand your ground!


I think there’s more to this than just the holidays. First you said you want to start spending every holiday at home NEXT YEAR. Then you changed it and you’re starting THIS YEAR and are saying it’s only one year🤔keep your story straight first off. Second, they are family so you should still do something and make a compromise. Maybe have them come over Christmas Eve and such and stay home Christmas Day. Families are not the same anymore because people don’t want to spend time together anymore. Family traditions are passed down from Grandparents also, not just mom and dad.

We have both sides close by as well. And we agreed right from the get go (baby’s 1st Christmas) that we wouldn’t be running around. We do our turkey dinner Christmas Eve, we have Christmas morning to ourselves, and around 3/3:30 all the famiky comes to exchange gifts and have supper. Its worked well for us.

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I wanted the same so this year we’re doing Christmas Day with extended family as I can’t ask everyone else to change their plans for me. Christmas Eve we’re doing dinner and Christmas activities including the kids presents at home. It’s going to be our Christmas. That way I get what I want but I don’t take from the rest of the extended family who also love my children and want to see them for holidays. It’s a win win. Try something Like that. A compromise is what marriage is made from. If Something so trivial can end a marriage then it wasn’t a very strong one to begin with.

My brother and sister in law spend Christmas Eve going around seeing family and they do not leave their house Christmas Day, so their kids can enjoy Christmas at home. Maybe try finding a middle ground.

We always celebrate Christmas eve with family (my parents, his family) and then Christmas day is for just us. Maybe think about doing it that way?

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One family Christmas Eve the other Christmas Day for evening dinner or the day after.

My entire life… we done Christmas with family members outside the home on Christmas EVE! Then Christmas at home, just Us on actual Christmas

We had the same conversation about 6 years ago and his parents went crazy but my hubby stood up for us and things just got worse between us and his parents but they are very narcissistic people so there was much more than just not wanting to see them for the holidays they were just making us uncomfortable and making my kids uncomfortable and very negative so about 3 yrs ago we cut them out completely🙌 We have never been HAPPIER😍

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