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How do you handle the Holidays?


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It has been a little over 5 months since I lost my husband. I don't want to "celebrate" holidays but my mother in law does. WE have always spent every holiday together. WE are a close family. But now, I am finding it very sad. I don't want to sit around with everybody and pretend nothing is wrong. Any body else feel like this? How do you handle it?



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My suggestion is to go and "celebrate" with your mother-in-law. If the family was always close and she would like to spend the painful times with YOU, it may be a form of closure, so to speak, for you both. She lost a son, you a husband and they were both the same man. By spending time with you, she is spending time with an extension of her son, and by spending time with her, you will see glimpses of the man you loved so much.

I don't think she's looking for a happy party when she mentions the holidays, I think SHE may be looking for some moral support, as well. Who better to spend time with during heartache than one who knows EXACTLY what you are going through, just from another angle?

I think his mother is reaching out to you in her pain, and it may be a good thing for YOU to take that hand as it is offered to you and hang on tight. I can understand having your own demons to conquer, yet if you spend the time with your mother-in-law, you can stand back to back and fight off the demons head on together.

I would urge you to dress comfortably, take a box of Kleenex and some of your happiest memories and join in the remembrance of your husband's life through the laughter and the tears. I think it would be good for your soul.

Take care, Cathy.



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I think the first one or two holidays are by far the toughest. But the only way to get past the first or second holiday is to grit your teeth and do it.

I had a family reunion last year, and it was tough. We sat around for a weekend, and nobody but me ever mentioned Becky's name. And it sucked royally. But the next time we got together, it was a little easier, and then a little easier again.

Becky is missing still, and we miss her when we get together and she is not there. A chair is always empty, a place setting missing. But she is in our hearts and spirits, and the last thing she would want for us is to lose the bonds of closeness. She would rather the experience of her bring us closer together.

So go for it. It will be hard and emotional, but you can do it and everyone will be better off, long term, for the effort.


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"How do you handle the Holidays?" One at a time.

(((Cathy))), I can't imagine how it feels loosing your husband to this beast, I am so sorry. :cry:

When I lost my mom I had trouble because there was a woman who came to my mom's viewing to hit on my dad and she has now been with him for over two years. Holidays became a real burden on me because of this woman (vulture). The summer party with my dads’ family was avoided by a "sudden illness". I later spoke with my dad and at Christmas the vulture wasn't there. Last Christmas I ignored the vulture. I have continued to celebrate the holidays for my kids. I am considering developing new holiday traditions.

If you were a close family before the loss of your husband then your MIL might be wanting to keep the family together. It would be easier for you not to go right now but in the long run I would think that you would have a larger loss if you lost the family closeness. What would your husband want you to do?

Hugs, Shelly

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