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Thanksgiving & Scared


anonimous2
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Hey guys. It's been a while since I have been on. I had been doing really well since I broke things off with my fiancée, but the holidays closing in have triggered my anxiety. I'm being so chicken about seeing my family this year that I have completely opted out of my own family Thanksgiving & am going along with 2 of my friends to THEIR family thanksgiving. It's too late to go changing my mind now which is fine, but even though I am not going to see my family I still feel like they're going to judge me in my absence. That my not being there is going to cause them to feel hostility towards me or something. I'm sure this is completely ridiculous, they all love me, it just causes me extreme anxiety & guilt. Bleh. I know that Christmas is going to be super freaky just because I will most definitely have to go & spend it with my family, I don't want them to be upset that I missed thanksgiving or notice that I"m just freaked out in general at being there. I know once I'm there w/ them I will be fine it's just the anticipation leading up to being with them that is very frightening. Look at me, Christmas is a MONTH away & I'm already scared of it. AHHHH :(

Any comforting words would be helpful =/

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Hi taybkc88,

I sorry you are so stressed right now. I understand how you are feeling. I ditched a lot of get togethers and things I should have been there for due to my depression and anxiety. Both of my grandmothers passed away in the last few years. I avoided visiting them in the few years before that because I could not bring myself to go. I am unsure I can explain it but I could not face them. I was worried about breaking down, I was worried about the days of trying to deal with the long term ramifications not to mention the days beforehand of worrying about it.

My family understood. I am sure in some ways they didn't understand, but they loved me and knew me and knew that I would not brush this off if it was not important.

Waiting

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Hi taybkc88,

I totally get where you're coming from. It's great you can spend thanksgiving with friends. If you had your wish, who would you spend Christmas with?

I am already stressing out over Christmas. This will be my third Christmas since my separation, which still isn't finalized. Last year I had my ex over for Christmas eve and morning, so we could both spend time with the kids. It didn't go so well. There's a good chance I'll be spending Christmas night by myself. Thinking about helping out at a soup kitchen or something if that happens.

My brother has had trouble spending Christmas with our family. He actually disappeared for a few years - didn't see him at all. One day I was walking downtown and I saw this big guy playing backgammon at this "gambler's hangout" set up on a certain street corner. It was him! Funny, I can't remember a thing about what happened after I said hello to him. Just dawned on me. Anyway... Some time after that he showed up for his first Christmas in years. We all welcomed him back wholeheartedly. I found out later he was so surprised. Something had got into his head that we didn't want him there (very low self esteem). Nothing could have been further from the truth.

So, whatever you do for Christmas, I hope you do what YOU want and need. Don't worry about your family. They will forgive you.

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  • 3 weeks later...

So I successfully made it through Thanksgiving with my friends' family & only stumbled over my words once which wasn't too traumatizing. Now Christmas is less than 2 wks away & I haven't seen any of my own family since LAST Christmas lol! AHHHHHHH! Freaking myself out. I need some ways of calming myself down, or at least not focusing on what worries me so much. I made an appt with my therapist cuz it's been over 6 mos. since I saw her last but I can't get in until the beginning of Jan. I was shooting for before Christmas just to talk some of this nonsense out but looks like I'll have to trek through this one on my own.

Athena - How are you feeling about Christmas now? I haven't caught up since ur last post.

Holidays freak anyone else out as bad as they do me?!?! Lol.

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It's going to be a strange Christmas. I'm used to getting together with my family on Christmas night (Dec 25th). This year it will be on Christmas Eve. My sister, whose place we usually gather at, will be picking my Mom who just went into a nursing home, and I'll be picking up my brother because he can't drive due to a recent heart attack as well as other complications. I have the only vehicle he can fit into (he's 450 lbs). My sister and I have gone from finding my Mom temporary respite in the last month to trying to find permanent care for both of them. My sister has cancer in her foot that is just not going away (she has to use alternative methods to treat because chemotherapy or radiation won't work). I have two young kids, a messy divorce and mental issues, so I guess none of has a corner on "personal challenges" right now. Other than worrying about my family's health, the only concern for the get together is how the heck to make an organic gluten free scalloped potato dish! I hope I can google it.

Christmas day will be the challenge. My kids and their Dad and I will all be together Christmas morning to "see what Santa brought" and open presents. How that will go will depend on their Dad. I try to ignore his rudeness but sometimes, I just can't let it go. Last year he tried to take off just as it was time to clean up after the Christmas eve dinner, Christmas breakfast and lunch which I had tried to make special. He tried to lay the big guilt trip on me for holding him up by daring to ask for his help. And if he tries to rub my nose in the fact that he spent $130/each on two gifts for my kids, every fibre of my being will want to scream out that I want half back for all the childcare, household bills, living expenses, etc, etc that he didn't pay a dime for due to his refusal to work for a living for the last five years of our marriage. But I won't for the kids' sake. I'll just let it fester and eat me up from the inside out. Then early afternoon, he'll take my kids with him and I'll be left on my own for Christmas night for the first time in my life. I still haven't decided what to do. I kind of have the urge to wander downtown and go buy a street kid some dinner or something. Who knows, I probably won't decide until the day. I just don't see myself sitting at home.

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Guest ASchwartz

Athena,

I am so very sorry to hear about your very considerable troubles. The fact that its at Christmas makes it all the more difficult.

You ex husband sounds like a real prince. Pardon my sarcasm.

Why is he being allowed to take the kids at all? He pays nothing, contributes nothing and does nothing to help. Have you taken him to court? You said you don't want to for the sake of the kids. Maybe I'm wrong but it seems to me that you should take him to court for the sake of the kids.

Do you have friends you can talk to you about your family and your ex? I have always found, for myself that talking, talking, talking really helps me.

By the way, if your ex can afford to buy 100 dollar gifts for the kids at Chrismis, why can't he afford child support! Ooops, there goes my sarcasm again. I guess I feel angry For you, on your behalf. There's nothing anyone can do about family sickness but about your ex....grrrrrr.

Allan, and I'm with you.

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Allan, thank you for your kind sentiments.

Why is he being allowed to take the kids at all? He pays nothing, contributes nothing and does nothing to help. Have you taken him to court? You said you don't want to for the sake of the kids. Maybe I'm wrong but it seems to me that you should take him to court for the sake of the kids.

We have joint custody, for several reasons 1)Early on, he went ballistic when I even asked about custody options in a mediation meeting and he threatened to take me to court for even asking 2)I have chronic back pain (getting under control after a year off) so I needed a break from the kids periodically 3)He loves them and they love him, despite them being afraid of him. 4) I think it's wicked to take a parent away from his/her kids.

One good thing that's happened, is he finally has a good job. Since I pay all the non-food kids expenses, I am trying to negotiate him paying a monthly amount to cover half their non-food expenses. I'm also trying to set it up so it comes out of his account automatically and will try to require him to get overdraft protection so I can count on it. I can't take him to court - it would hurt me as I was the responsible parent with a job at the time of separation. Although he has made more than me several times over our marriage, I got caught in a pure timing problem, and thus the court would only stick me with paying for him for god knows how many years plus paying for the kids 100%. So he simply uses that knowledge to blackmail me into getting as much out of me as he thinks I can tolerate without jumping off a tall building. Anyway, I think we are close to an agreement and perhaps the prospect of JAIL time, loss of driver's license and passport will be enough of a deterrent to non-payment.

Do you have friends you can talk to you about your family and your ex? I have always found, for myself that talking, talking, talking really helps me.

My friends disappear after I talk about this. I guess my rage scares everybody away. I don't talk much about my ex to anybody anymore. I'm afraid even my therapist will up and leave me if I discuss it more than once.

Edited by Athena
Paranoia
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Guest ASchwartz

Athena,

I must say this: You are not going to scare me away and you are not going to scare the rest of us here. Here, you can talk all you need to about this and you can express your anger about this. What kind of friends could they have been if they abandoned you? People can be so thoughtless and insensitive.

We're here for you.

Allan

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