Family obligations my ass!

Would someone please explain why the fuck I have to give up MY Thanksgiving vacation to drive a thousand miles to be with relatives I would rather not see again in my life? I’m a college student! I’ve busted my ass working on a degree in physics and I AM EXHAUSTED!

I don’t want to spend four days on the road and three days with my dysfunctional relatives out in the middle of nowhere! I don’t give a damn if it’s expected of me! It’s my goddamn week off. I don’t want to spend it with my alcoholic aunt and her psycho husband, their two bratty kids, my backstabbing bitch of a grandmother and my 41-year-old spinster aunt who’s never had a date in her life! I don’t want to listen to the arguments, I don’t want to endure my grandmother’s subtle manipulations and I don’t want to even see my bastard uncle because I swear I’ll bash his fucking teeth in! The asshole took a baseball bat to my aunt once in a drunken rage and she’s still with him. Unbelievable.

I’m not going and I don’t give a damn if my parents cut off my tuition money-- I’ll fucking get a job and pay my own way. I’m not giving up my time for this.

. . . Okay, I’m sorry, but I had to vent and this place just happened to be nearby. Now I need to find some Rolaids. My stomach hurts.
– Sylence

And now, for my next trick, I will talk in spooky half-references.

Hey, Chill Sylence.
Let me cue you in to a little secret dude, You don’t have to go.
If you take my advice, this is what you could do:
Rent a few movies, get gobs of popcorn, take your phone off the hook, grab a bean chair, sit back and r-e-l-a-x. All the more sweet since everyone else will be rushing ‘home’. Enjoy the Sylence.
Trust me it works.

Sylence, there’s a nasty 'flu going around. One of my kids was sick for nearly two weeks with it. SURELY, as much as you’d love to spend the holiday with your family, you wouldn’t want to run the risk of exposing them all to it and having them be sick, possibly right up until Christmas? And you know, you’re not supposed to drive when you’re taking all that medication . . . .

Dr. Sue? I KNOW that online diagnosis isn’t really your thing, but maybe in this case you could make an exception? :wink:


Sylence, when I was in school and didn’t want to be dragged along with my (future) husband’s family gatherings, I’d always volunteer to work those days. Everyone would feel sorry for me because I had to work holidays, and I’d usually wind up having a blast with all the other people trying to avoid their families. I worked in a bar, so the tips were pretty decent, too.

Hard as it is, don’t let money manipulate you. Just say no. You don’t HAVE to do anything. Too bad you don’t live near me- I have a nice Thanksgiving at my house every year, and I always have a few people over who don’t have anywhere to go (or don’t want to go there). It’s a great time. Good luck, and I suggest the flu as an excuse. From now on :slight_smile:

A friend is someone who likes you even though you’re as ugly as a hat full of assholes.

Hey, Sylence - sounds like you hate going to these get-togethers as much as some of us dislike putting them on.

I see my hubby’s stepkids twice a year – when they come to eat (or as in the anorexic’s case, pick) on Thanksgiving (and promptly leave), and again on Christmas, only at Christmas they leave with presents, which they will exchange for cash to buy Beanie Babies or hip hop CDs.

The suicide blonde with the fake tan will bitch about the cigarette smoke, her extra nice hubby will take everything with good grace, the one who lived with us for 2 years rent free will not speak unless spoken to but will probably need to borrow some money, the little sociopath who just lost his third job in three years and wants to be hired where I work will sulk all evening and only eat from the hors’ d’oeuvres tray, the nephews who only see their daddy on holidays will look at him longingly for some kind of positive attention.

Now if these were MY kids coming to visit, it’d be a whole different thing. (They’re 2000 miles away.)

I don’t like these people, would never associate with them if we weren’t “related”, and I resent working my ass off and spending a small fortune on a big dinner for them.

If it weren’t for the fact that my hubby is the most wonderful man in the world who never asks for anything, I’d say no. And they’re his step-kids too – just goes to show what a nice guy he is.

The Ex (the mother of these spawns of Satan) doesn’t cook.

Sylence, I don’t like the sound of your voice…it’s kinda hoarse. And, my, your eyes are a little red. Are you sweating? Hmm…maybe a little bed rest is in order.

I, too, understand the reluctance to share precious free time with the whole fam damily. I’ve got the uncle who regales us with stories of his procto exam, the drunken aunt who slobbers, the cousin who got kicked off the police force for regular use of excessive force, and the busy-body social butterfly cousin that pesters the fuck out of me.

If it wasn’t for my one cool uncle that I rarely get to see, I wouldn’t go at all.

:::touching back of my hand to Sylence’s forehead::: Warm, definitely warm.


I remember a Thaksgiving about, mmmm…19 years ago now, when a surprise snowstorm interrupted my plans to drive the 30 miles to my folks’ house for dinner. Man, I had a good time that day, staying home and eating Deli turkey with canned gravy and Kroger pumpkin pie. No inane conversations with dipshit relatives, and all the football I could stand, interspersed with some excellent jazz on the stereo. Man, I was in college-boy heaven.!

Mom’s gone now, these past 4 years, and I’d trade 10 Thanksgivings like that one for just one more with her (slightly overcooked) home-baked turkey and lumpy mashed 'taters.

You knew someone was going to say this, didn’t you? That’s why you’re going to curse me for being a sentimental old fool, and get in your car and go where you have to go and make your family happy. There will always be Kroger’s, and you’ll have holidays with no obligations somewhere down the road, but you only have one family, dude. Make the best of it, and drive safely.

Reality is for people who can’t handle drugs.

-Tom Waits


Thank you!

… or you could have car trouble or something and go see Mom the day AFTER Thanksgiving, when all your obnoxious backwoods cousins are back on the couch and it’s just you and her.
Leftovers are almost as good, better if you enjoy the company.

Sylence – will you post after Thanksgiving and let us know what you decided to do, and how it turned out?

As for me entertaining hubby’s step-kids, I’ve decided to take the high road and put on a feed like they’ve never seen. It’ll make hubby happy, and I’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that THEY know their dad got it right this time.

Thank you all for your honest opinions. . . it feels better to know that I’m not the only person in the world who doesn’t like going to Thanksgiving dinner with relatives. :slight_smile:

AuntiePam– I’ll keep you updated on how things turn out. At the moment I’m hoping for a freak snowstorm and considering the pros and cons of visiting the contagious diseases ward at the hospital [not really ;)].
– Sylence

And now, for my next trick, I will talk in spooky half-references.

The great thing about adulthood is getting to make the choices. Examine your options, understand the consequences of each (as best you can) then follow through.

What are the trade-offs? If you don’t go will you end up accepting the guilt that might be heaped on you? Would it be worth it. (You don’t have to accept the guilt trip, you know.)

Will your mom be pissed? Maybe. Will she get over it? Sooner or later.

Make the best decision you can. If it’s the wrong one, don’t do that again. The sun will still rise the next morning.

Judging from some families I’ve seen, part of the obligatory attendence is the hostess’ feeling that “If I’ve got to put up with these assholes, EVERYBODY’s got to put up with them.”

Depending on your situation, you might take the edge off for your conscience by spending some time volunteering to hand out Thanksgiving dinners at a local shelter.

Good luck.

Sylence, I’m with you. I just don’t understand the entire family obligation thing when you are driven mad by your family. ( Not mad in a bad way, just irritating.)

For the past 11 years, hubby and I have done the dual dinner thing for the holidays. I hate this because 1) it’s too much food for one day 2) we hit my mom’s first and then his mom’s so I feel like I’m short changing my Mom, but I really don’t want to spend more than three hours THERE. BUT I don’t really want to end my Night at the inlaws house either. 3) -THIS IS THE BIGGIE - it’s the same re-run over and over and over and over and over again. The same food. The same decorations. The same conversation. The same overeating. The same guys ditching the room to watch the Game. The same women cleaning up. Me avoiding both situations like a pap smear because I’m a third wheel in the kitchen and I don’t give a rat’s ass about who’s crushing the Lion’s this year. I end up hiding in a corner behind a newspaper. AIGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.

Just once I would like to have Burritos or Chop Suey on Thanksgiving. I would host the party ( This would be a supreme effort for me because I am the Anti-Martha Stewart) and order the meal from a local restaurant. I’ve put this idea to my husband and he is affronted, " WHAT do you mean no turkey. That is what thanksgiving is all about." WAHHHHHHHHH.Every year I could divorce him over this issue. “Yes, Your Honor, that’s right, I’m divorcing this wonderful man over a Turkey.”

It’s only taken him nearly 12 years to realize that I am anti-holiday and that I sink into a depression that starts in mid november and carries through until January.

My dream holiday would be to go some where ( Yeah, I know, it’s peak time and very crowded.) and see the holiday from a different angle. Like from a beach chair or ski slope. Since I’ll never get burritos for Thanksgiving, traveling would be too much to ask for.

Okay, been there, done that! All I can say is be where you want to be. Last year I visited my sister in Texas for Christmas. I had a GREAT time! This year, I’m going there for Turkey Day. Same reason. I like to be with her. She is supportive of me. I always have a great time when I’m with her and her family. Her husband is a nice man and her son is scary smart; I love him so much I always think about having one of my own (until I’m stuck with him for about 3 hours!).

But, and this is the big BUT: I had to blow off my brother for Turkey Day. He and his wife just got this huge fucking mansion in LA and wanted me to come out basically so they could show off. Not that they wanted my company. Not that they even like me very much. They just wanted to show off. I didn’t know how to tell them I didn’t want to go. My father solved that very well by telling me that I wasn’t invited anyway.

Now, I know what he said was really mean and I’m sure my brother never said that but when my brother asked if I was coming out I told him what our father had said. And that I had already made other plans. Gee, bummer! But my brother wasn’t all that broken up so I think he must have said something to our father.

Anyway, I’m now rambling off on a lot of stupid family shit. Just be where you want to be. Even if that means sitting in your dorm room eating a hungry man dinner. Tell them what ever you have to to get out of it. I know, lying isn’t nice but if they won’t take a simple no I’d go with the “horrible flu” thing.