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  • Ally Monarch

Holidays with Family

Updated: Jun 27, 2022

So, this has been on my mind for a while and I have gone back and forth about writing this blog. I decided that if I have been thinking about this, other people probably have as well. Since becoming an adult, I feel like holidays have become more complicated. They have become more challenged for several different reasons such as being an adult, getting married, developing my own traditions, and having children. As a child, the holidays seemed so much simpler. I just showed up or made a list of presents I wanted and had fun. Now as an adult, I feel like there are so many other things to think about and do that the peace and joy seems to be unobtainable.

To start, I would like to discuss the growing up piece. As a kid, many of your beliefs, ideas, and opinions stemmed from your parents. As you mature and get older, you start to develop your own thoughts that may differ from that of your parents. Sometimes these differences are welcomed and accepted, or maybe just tolerated, but other times they are rejected and become a source of tension. Getting together for the holidays can feel very hard or frustrating when you have to filter while with family or avoid specific topics or issues, or even remain silent as to not “rock the boat”.

Getting married or having a serious relationship with a partner can also be another challenging piece to the “holiday magic”. Bringing another person into the traditions of family dynamics can go really well or be very bumpy at times. Any time a pattern is changed there are growing pains. Your partner may want to insert their own traditions into the mix or not want to participate in the current traditions. Finding a balance where each party feels seen seems hard, and acceptance can get tricky and feel impossible at times.

Starting your own family and your own traditions seem to go hand in hand. As humans, many of us are creatures of habit and we avoid change at all costs, even when the change is good. When we start our own family, it is not uncommon to want to create our own traditions and way of doing things. This may mean that you want to have one of the holidays at your house and not travel to go see family. This may mean that you only want to celebrate with your immediate family at home without the extended family. You may also wish to create new ways of celebrating that are different from how “you’ve always done it.” Yet, some may want to maintain the traditions of their childhood and pass that down to their children.

The point I want to make is that there is no right way to do the holidays and no one should ever tell you there is. However you may choose to celebrate and engage with your family is right! Do not feel pressured to give in or change your plans to make other people happy. You deserve to enjoy your holiday too! There is a difference between healthy compromise and endless sacrifice where your experience is harmful to you. The right choice for you and your family is whatever helps you to find joy and peace during this holiday season. I feel like this post went on a bit of a ramble, but they are words that I thought other people may appreciate hearing. Happy Holidays Everyone!

Please schedule a free consultation if you have further questions or want to schedule an individual session to create space for you to find out what brings you joy and peace this season. This takes time and vulnerability, but it is worth it! You are worth it! Families have many complexities, but that’s what makes them so amazing!

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