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Holiday Trap

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DH is working Thanksgiving this year and we have plans the following weekend out of town with my family. DH finally got around to telling his mother and she, who will not speak to me because her gaslighting and emotional manipulation tactics do not work on me, invited DS (who she allowed to be emotionally abused under her roof) and I to the family Thanksgiving.

 

I am tempted to go and be a very "nice" lawful evil person just to make things very uncomfortable.

 

I do not like emotionally abusive people. I do not like what she has done to my husband, my step adultren, my son and to me.

 

I have lots of other things I can do that day and I probably will not even bother going there and just let this be added to her list of things that she can use to martyr herself over. "We invited them and woe is me they refused to come on a holiday!"

 

There is no way to win with an emotionally abusive person.

 

Christmas was just as much of a shock to his mother who atruggled to understand why we were not taking the adultren who are looking for full time jobs and will not be able to take 3 weeks off of work in the first 90 days. OK, they are not actually looking for a job yet (but they promise to have one soon!) and they will not actually have jobs by then, based on history, by we are acting as though they are adults and we would never ask, nor expect them, or anyone, to compromise a new job for an extended family vacation.

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No, don't go!  Just give a short reply:  "Thank you, but ds and I have plans for the day already."  Then try not to think about it.  And plan something fun with your ds!  There's often good movies playing on Thanksgiving.  :)

 

 

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I don't think I've ever commented on your terrible in-law situation before but I've read lots of your threads and posts.  I can't even imagine why you'd go.  And, going with the goal of making things uncomfortable... aren't they uncomfortable anyway?  And how would that help the situation?  

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You said it yourself, "There is no way to win with an emotionally abusive person.", and there isn't. Whatever you decide to do, you won't win, so why not do something enjoyable for your family? 

 

 

Hugs to you. I get this situation, I do. 

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I would not go. You don't enjoy it, they don't actually like you, it would not alter your relationship, so why bother?

This.

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Plan something with your ds. Does he like to cook or help cook? Choose a favorite dish each and make both for your personal holiday at home meal. That's how we do Christmas every year. It's a hodge podge of dishes and lots of fun. It's like breaking the traditional dinner rules of one protein, one starch, etc.

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No way would I go. There's no way to improve your relationship with her so I wouldn't put myself (and my kid) into a situation that might be awful. 

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I have a bunch of family who are emotionally manipulative and spend a lot of effort on PR campaigns about what good people they are and would use the same "We invited them and woe is me they refused to come on a holiday!" martyrdom. So, I can understand your situation.

 

Don't go. Let them know that your neighbor or a friend invited you and you accepted or that you signed up for volunteering at the soup kitchen and they don't have enough people and depend on you or that you and your DS are going on a short trip or some such thing. There is no reason to make an excuse, normally. But, with boundary pushers and NPDs if you just say that you are unavailable, they will push all your buttons (including your DH's) and generate a lot of misery. If they know that you really cannot be available, they will retreat and wait for the next occasion to go after you. At least, the holidays will be relaxed for you.

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Agreed, don't go! It sounds like it would be long and awful. How do you handle family get-togethers? Do you just not go, and the rest of the family goes? I'm curious b/c I have a MIL problem too. A problem for another thread soon... blah. Hope you can just stay home for Thanksgiving, it sounds relaxing :)

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Don't go and don't feel guilty over it. Instead of doing something you know you don't want to do, find something for you and your son that you will enjoy.

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Agreed, don't go! It sounds like it would be long and awful. How do you handle family get-togethers? Do you just not go, and the rest of the family goes? I'm curious b/c I have a MIL problem too. A problem for another thread soon... blah. Hope you can just stay home for Thanksgiving, it sounds relaxing :)

After a BIL emotional harmed my son under MILs roof last Christmas when I refused to go no child (or teen) of mine is allowed there without me. I refuse to go. DH supports me but is struggking to break free of MIL gaslighting. I journal and showed him and that helped him see what she was doing.

 

I will admit to fighting a desire to do unto them what they did to my kid. Do.not.mess.with.my.kid. This mama bear gets mean. I honestly never thought I could get as viscious as I did.

 

At times I also fight the urge to tell the world what I know these people have done. It is a small small world here and after I called a friend when I was so upset she heavily implied that the community they think adores them knows or strongly suspects they are a fruad.

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Why allow the drama?

Say no thanks, offer no explanation and feel no guilt.

Done.

 

You are in control.

Edited by MEmama
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I think the Hive has spoken.

 

Don't go.

 

Seriously, how often do we all agree on everything? Clearly we must be right about this! :)

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Nope.  Don't go. Having a nice time at home will be worth the repercussions later (the 'woe is me, we invited her and she didn't come').

 

But don't just sit around at home doing nothing either.  Create some sort of special dinner or adventure for your son and you.

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There is no way to win with an emotionally abusive person.

 

this is why you don't play their games.  they will change the rules just to make sure they win.

 

so - don't play the game.  if your dh isn't there, there is no amount of money that would make me go.

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Running away. Running far far away. Order a small Thanksgiving dinner from the market for you and your ds. Easy peasy. Then you can at games, watch movies, and relax the whole day.

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I would say, "Thank you, but we won't be able to attend."  And that would be it.  No explaining, no carrying on a conversation, just matter of factly informing her that it's a no. Done and done. I wouldn't respond to any of her attempts at contact after I told her.

You can't do anything there that will make it meaningful or better no matter what approach you take.  You know darn well how she'll behave.  You know darn well how everyone will feel when there.  There's no good that comes of that for anyone, so don't go.  Don't go, try to be nice, and then complain that she was her usual awful self. Just. don't. go.

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Do. Not. Go. The small victory of making her uncomfortable wouldn’t make up for the damage subjecting yourself to the drama would cause you.

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