A Holiday Grudge – Forgive or Forget?

It’s the season for being cheery.  Lights, snowmen, gifts, parties, and families, it’s a time when everyone gets together to celebrate the season. 

It’s also time to hide from unwanted confrontations.

What should you do if you haven’t spoken to a family member in a very long time?  What if they have done something to hurt you over the last year?  Do you let it go and arrive with a fake holiday smile, or do you pass the gathering by, maybe even breaking tradition?

Personally, I have a really hard time being fake.  Actually, I cannot be fake.  For me, I would most likely be sitting in a corner somewhere, watching the children open their gifts.  I would be avoiding any person that has set me off in the last year.  I am not one to hold grudges, I can forgive and forget very quickly.  Only when many things build up and build up do I start to pull away.

It takes a lot to make me angry.  Once I get to that point though, it is very hard for me to let things go.  I just can’t be fake.

I don’t want to break tradition, but I don’t want to go some place and be uncomfortable.  I don’t want to disappoint my children, but I also don’t want them to witness any bickering, God forbid that would even occur.  I really hate confrontation.

So, this is my Christmas dilemma.  Do I burn the bridge or do I mend it? 

xoxo,

Stacy

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. When the Kids Go To Bed
    Dec 16, 2011 @ 13:51:32

    That’s a really tough one. Certainly depends upon the circumstances. I can tell you that my cousin didn’t talk to his mother for years when she divorced my uncle. I finally got him to come over for Christmas and reconcile. It was the most precious gift we all could have asked for. We are family and we love each other. Unforunately he passed away this summer, but I am so grateful that they were able to get over their differences. The best of luck to you. You need to figure out if the relationship is worth salvaging.

    Reply

  2. Tracy
    Dec 16, 2011 @ 15:38:10

    Thats a hard one. I get mad, let it pass, but the anger builds up. I have had a hard time saying no in the past, so ‘allowed’ things to happen that I was not really happy with, totally my fault for not being comfortable saying no about an outing involving someone taking my daughter out of town, taking her for her first haircut, buying her very expensive gifts, and various other things. I take full responsibility for not being strong enough or grown up enough to say ‘no’. When I finally got a back bone & said ‘no’, that caused a lot of problems. Things seem to have settled now. I feel I can say no, or ‘I don’t want to’, & if I make someone mad, they’ll get over it….eventually. On another note, my husband has not talked to his mother for a year. No communication at all. They will see one another Christmas for the first time in a year. I don’t handle confrontation well, don’t handle stress well, I dread it. I hope things go smoothly for my daughters sake, but I really doubt it will. If it affects anyone, it will be my daughter, or me. Its stressful & makes for a bad day. The motherinlaw is stubborn as well as my husband. I can see why each has a problem w/ the other. There are past childhood wrongs my spouse remembers & he has not been the best of sons in teen years or adulthood. Family members have tried to get them to mend fences, but I don’t think it will ever happen. I wish I could say it does not involve me, but just being in the room, you can feel the tension, see the dirty looks. I’m hoping there are enough people there that someone can keep the spouse occupied & keep the motherinlaw occupied. I just hope for a peaceful Christmas. Its only for a few hours so I pray it goes well. Wish I had some advice for you, Stacy. While I’m in my holiday drama, I’ll be thinking of you in yours.

    Reply

  3. notewords
    Dec 23, 2011 @ 11:46:33

    Very tricky. I have a grudge against my one sister-in-law, and as far as she is concerned, she did nothing wrong. How can you forgive someone who isn’t sorry? I’m polite to her, but the incident changed the way I think about her as a person, and I doubt that is going to go away. She did something that was hurtful to my son, and that I don’t just forget.

    Reply

  4. Anonymous
    Feb 20, 2012 @ 09:52:22

    how about taking a lady I knew in Toronto to South Africa to visit my sister. They took us everywhere. ape Town is the most beautiful city in the world. She had 3 meals a day and a bedroom and bathroom to herself and at the end of the holiday did not even say ‘thank you’ or take my family out for a meal or pay gas, or at least a portion. This is plain ignorant on her part and taught me to be careful who you travel with.

    Reply

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