The Stress of Coming Home for Christmas
The Stress of Coming Home for Christmas

The Stress of Coming Home for Christmas

 

Every Christmas there are a lot of ideals.  The media portraying the perfect Christmas putting pressure on us when in actual fact it can be one of the most stressful times of the year.  

So how are your Christmas plans going?   Is the turkey defrosting, the potatoes ready to be peeled, the holy and brandy ready to go on the steaming Christmas pudding?

But for some people there are things that come to light every single year. What are the issues that rear their ugly heads each year?

Spending too much money.

Eating too much.

Drinking too much.

Being with family who we hardly see too much.

Too much sedentary behaviour.

Too much lack of communication throughout the year regarding important matters that we keep putting off until the right time.

Too much interference from family members who feel they should be on the ‘need to know list’.

 

All of this can put a lot of unnecessary pressure and strain on our relationships.

I’m sure we are all guilty of some of the above which can be repaired but the one that is the hardest to repair are relationships with our family.  Too much time together can force difficult conversations to the surface or even nosiness into other people’s business.  Some may find the same questions being asked year after year and you dread it being repeated again.

When are you going to get a boyfriend/girlfriend?

When are you going to settle down?

When are you going to get married?

When are you going to start a family?

When are you going to move into your own place?

When are you going to get a proper job?

When are you going to ditch that useless boyfriend/girlfriend?

These questions immediately bring to mind the ever-faithful Christmas movie ‘Bridget Jones Diary’.  The persistent mother who is trying to fix her daughter up and the loyal family friends hoping to see Bridget on the road to settling down.  The thing is, the longer people know you the more they think they have the right to ask those personal questions you dread.

 

During the year we might be hiding personal information which needs to be discussed with family members like parents or children that comes out at Christmas time in a forced situation that can be very difficult to handle.  There is never a good time, so make the right time to talk about these sorts of things such as;

We are splitting up.

We can’t have children.

I am gay.

I am going to move to the other side of the world for my job.

I don’t want to be in a long-term partnership but am going to have a baby.

 

So why do we leave these sorts of conversations until the last moment or when we are forced into a corner and feeling trapped.  The information is then blurted out leaving people stunned, angry, resentful and confused.  Why do we do this to ourselves when afterwards we realise it would have been so much better to have made that phone call.  Take a deep breath, speak clearly and logically so that everyone can start getting used to the changes in the family dynamics before we are all forced together around the Christmas table. Perhaps it is time to start taking control of the situation before the dreaded questions are asked.  Take a bit of time out and speak to family members concerned and give them a call.  Plan what you are going to say to reduce the stress that is consuming you and avoid the resentment of the annoyed, hurtful feelings, things being said that are immediately regretted and storming out of the house tantrums you may experience when you are feeling forced into that corner.  Or beforehand simply say in a very kind way something like, “I know you are concerned about my welfare because you ask me each year but I would appreciate it if you didn’t ask me in public because nothing has changed at this time in my life.   Thank you for understanding.”  Then just leave it, excuse yourself and go and get a drink or see if your host or hostess needs any help.

I know that our business is nobody else’s business but sometimes it is better to be transparent about these sorts of things and just get it out into the open and reduce the anxiety and stress for yourself, removed the elephant in the room and clear the air.

 

If you are struggling to manage those Christmas family gatherings or the festivities didn’t go the way you had planned, then I can help you.  Message me to find out how.

makethechange@cathlloyd.co.uk with the subject ‘Christmas Feelings’

The Stress of Coming Home for Christmas

 

Every Christmas there are a lot of ideals.  The media portraying the perfect Christmas putting pressure on us when in actual fact it can be one of the most stressful times of the year.  

So how are your Christmas plans going?   Is the turkey defrosting, the potatoes ready to be peeled, the holy and brandy ready to go on the steaming Christmas pudding?

But for some people there are things that come to light every single year. What are the issues that rear their ugly heads each year?

Spending too much money.

Eating too much.

Drinking too much.

Being with family who we hardly see too much.

Too much sedentary behaviour.

Too much lack of communication throughout the year regarding important matters that we keep putting off until the right time.

Too much interference from family members who feel they should be on the ‘need to know list’.

 

All of this can put a lot of unnecessary pressure and strain on our relationships.

I’m sure we are all guilty of some of the above which can be repaired but the one that is the hardest to repair are relationships with our family.  Too much time together can force difficult conversations to the surface or even nosiness into other people’s business.  Some may find the same questions being asked year after year and you dread it being repeated again.

When are you going to get a boyfriend/girlfriend?

When are you going to settle down?

When are you going to get married?

When are you going to start a family?

When are you going to move into your own place?

When are you going to get a proper job?

When are you going to ditch that useless boyfriend/girlfriend?

These questions immediately bring to mind the ever-faithful Christmas movie ‘Bridget Jones Diary’.  The persistent mother who is trying to fix her daughter up and the loyal family friends hoping to see Bridget on the road to settling down.  The thing is, the longer people know you the more they think they have the right to ask those personal questions you dread.

 

During the year we might be hiding personal information which needs to be discussed with family members like parents or children that comes out at Christmas time in a forced situation that can be very difficult to handle.  There is never a good time, so make the right time to talk about these sorts of things such as;

We are splitting up.

We can’t have children.

I am gay.

I am going to move to the other side of the world for my job.

I don’t want to be in a long-term partnership but am going to have a baby.

 

So why do we leave these sorts of conversations until the last moment or when we are forced into a corner and feeling trapped.  The information is then blurted out leaving people stunned, angry, resentful and confused.  Why do we do this to ourselves when afterwards we realise it would have been so much better to have made that phone call.  Take a deep breath, speak clearly and logically so that everyone can start getting used to the changes in the family dynamics before we are all forced together around the Christmas table. Perhaps it is time to start taking control of the situation before the dreaded questions are asked.  Take a bit of time out and speak to family members concerned and give them a call.  Plan what you are going to say to reduce the stress that is consuming you and avoid the resentment of the annoyed, hurtful feelings, things being said that are immediately regretted and storming out of the house tantrums you may experience when you are feeling forced into that corner.  Or beforehand simply say in a very kind way something like, “I know you are concerned about my welfare because you ask me each year but I would appreciate it if you didn’t ask me in public because nothing has changed at this time in my life.   Thank you for understanding.”  Then just leave it, excuse yourself and go and get a drink or see if your host or hostess needs any help.

I know that our business is nobody else’s business but sometimes it is better to be transparent about these sorts of things and just get it out into the open and reduce the anxiety and stress for yourself, removed the elephant in the room and clear the air.

 

If you are struggling to manage those Christmas family gatherings or the festivities didn’t go the way you had planned, then I can help you.  Message me to find out how.

makethechange@cathlloyd.co.uk with the subject ‘Christmas Feelings’

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