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Christmas woes

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Oh, somebody please tell me I'm not the only person having a rather yucky holiday this year.

I have only just today gotten my money for Christmas shopping. Out of $300, I need to buy gifts for family friends and a tree as well as everything for my daughter. It wouldn't be so bad if she didn't have definite ideas about what she wants. There will be no presents for hubby or I, there's simply no money for it.

Hubby told me last week that he wants to be "less involved" in our family. He is available so little as it is, between work and holing up in his room. How much less is there? He adds that he doesn't want to get away from me, but he wants to be alone. It's a fine distinction in the root of his feelings, but it still feels like rejection.

We won't be seeing my in-laws this year, since they are in CA and we are in TX. I contacted my aunt about us joining her and her response in part says "Come Christmas Day around 6:00 p.m.........don't think all my children and their families will be arriving for our sharing until mid-day and we need just a little time by ourselves." I'm glad to be included at all and I'm sure now that she has 3 daughters-in-law and several grandchildren that this is true, but it hurts my feelings a little. I'm an only child and an orphan, so without my extended family I feel quite alone.

To top it off, I seem to have the flu. I've spent the last 3 days in bed and no matter what I take, I am tired and congested and achy. I want my mommy to come take care of me, or at least of my daughter because every time she asks me for something - even reasonable things like lunch - I just want to burst into tears from the effort of having to do it.

I know I'm just drowning in self-pity and that lots of other people are far worse off than I am. I'm sure it's just one of those moments when I can't see past my own nose and if I re-read this tomorrow I'll think "I can't believe I was such a whining baby about everything". But right now I'm just miserable.
post #2 of 23
Sunlion...no you're not alone. Christmas is a lonely,frustrating time for lots of us. With it's heavy emphasis on money and the more fractured lifestyles of today it often seems to emphasize the things we DON'T have.

It's especially hard to be alone with a small child. They get seduced by the glitter and advertizing. It's very hard to say no to those excited dreams.

It's no easier to spend this time alone with an aging parent who is sliding into senility.

Christmas nowadays can be a very unhappy day for many.

Just hold your daughter very tight and love her all you can. Perhaps you could take her to a church on Christmas Eve and let her experience the true meaning of the day.

Hang in there..it WILL get better.
post #3 of 23
Oh, I wish I could come and give you a big hug right now!!! I can definitely relate to how you feel. This will be the first Christmas for me and hubby but my first Christmas to spend away from my parents and siblings. So, I will be making Christmas dinner for the first time and by myself no less; it would take hubby an hour to make a box of mac & cheese. Luckily we ended up getting an extra turkey for Thanksgiving that is in the feezer so I will just have to worry about buying a couple of side items to make. His family doesn't make the traditional Christmas dinner and has very unusual traditions that I am not used to, so I kinda feel like an outsider. Money was very tight this year, I couldn't help my sister with our parents stocking stuffers and their won't be stockings for hubby or I either (or elaborate gifts, hubby usually gets me jewelry but I told him I really needed some clothes) I bought him some tenni's and jeans (no fun gifts this year). As a money saver, our parents and grandparents are getting pictures of us for their gifts. I didn't send out Christmas cards either (too much $$$$) and I feel really horrible about that. I really miss my family so i can kinda relate to how you feel and don't feel bad for talking about it! It's never good to keep that kind of stuff to yourself and that's what we are here for. Smile, snuggle a kitty in your arms and I hope you feel better!

P.S. I really like Kittyfoot's idea. I remember my first Christmas Eve service and I was mesmerized!
post #4 of 23
Sunlion, I'm sorry you are so sad and lonely. It sounds like your husband is seriously depressed and that his depression (not to mention your grief and loneliness) is making your life miserable.

Would he be willing to get some help? How about you? Is there someone you can talk to? If nothing else, St. John's Wort is quite helpful for mild to moderate depression. You can get it at Wal Mart or most pharmacies or health food stores. You just have to take it daily and it will take several weeks to have an effect. Spending $10 on SJW to help pull yourself up a little isn't too bad.

I agree with the others that what your daughter needs more than any flashy Christmas gift is your love.

((((((((( )))))) Big cyber hugs to you.
post #5 of 23
Sunlion, I am so sorry you are so down. It sounds like you are having a rough time and I really feel for you. I hope you are able to find some counseling or someone to talk to. I hope that you and your husband are able to work out your problems. Try to remember there is a light at the end of the tunnel for you and your family.

Happy Holidays!
post #6 of 23
I am having a bad holiday season too. Hard time getting a good job. It depresses me too. If I had a good job with money, I'd be in Mexico with my two children enjoying Christmas with my families. Both on my mother's side and on my father's side. There will be tons of presents under the tree for my children and the fridge and cupboards filled with good food. Not relying on the federal government for help. I know that prozac will not help with the depression. What will make me happier is work. sometimes, I go to places and hear people complaining about thier jobs. In the past I would also complain. Now I tell people to be grateful that at least they are working and not suffering. Maybe, they can give me their jobs if they don't like it. I am so willing to work, yet people don't give me a chance. A few weeks ago, I went to have my pictures printed at a grocery store and the employee at the counter was anything but friendly. This store promises of being friendly and courteous, yet this woman did not smile. NOthing! I was ready to complain to the manager. Next time I will, see if they can give me her job because I know that I can work better than her! I just know that next year there will be a change for the better. So hang in there.
post #7 of 23

I'm sorry you're having such a difficult time around the holidays. I wish I could say something that would make you feel better.

I get depressed from October 1 through December 31 every year. My Mom passed away on Oct. 10, 1973 and 28 years ago today we had a house fire that killed my grandfather. It's the one time of year when I wish I could just hibernate the time away. Unfortunately it doesn't work like that.

Daniela is right. Your hubby does sound depressed. Whether he suffers from it all the time or it's just caused by the holiday I don't know. St. John's Wort does work.

I suffer from clinical depression so I'm on medicine all the time. Lately it has not been working. Fortunately I've found a new doctor who is willing to try another medicine on me. The one I'm on now I've been on for over 3 years and I think I've reached a plateau.

Anyway, try to hang in there. The holidays are almost over with. 2002 is a new year and hopefully for everyone involved, it will be a little brighter.
post #8 of 23
Sunlion, I know where your coming from and it is hard and it sounds well for us to give advice but we all mean well. Sometimes, even though it may be good advice, it's not what I want to hear.
I made Christmas cookies and had my grandchildren all here to help decorate them, some pretty interesting looking cookies. Anyway, we put some in plastic bags and they were able to give as special gifts they had made, no need to spend alot of money, and grandma cleaned the kitchen afterwards. We try to come up with unusual ideas for gifts, like just how far can you stretch $2. or whatever amount. It's more about how much you can get or do for the least amount of money. I picked up a garage sale sweatshirt for my granddaughter as she loves horses and it has one of the front. After wahing it I showed it to her and her first reply was thanks grandma but why don't you wrap it up for my Christmas present? She is 8 years old and I am very proud of her. Of course, she is getting more items for Christmas, but the sweatshirt will be wrapped and under my tree also.
She loves to play dress up and so I went to a local Salvation Army and bought a couple party dresses to go with her stash of dress up clothes. There are books on this type of thing at local library for no charge. There may not be time this year, but maybe just baking a pie or cookies or boxed cake mix together and having fun together is what they will remember. Stuff wears out, memories are great.
Does anyone else feel this way?
Hang in there, it is a hard time of year for alot of people and long as we try to keep it all in perspective, it helps. Like ones before me have stated, real Christmas in not on TV. Please know that I'll be thinking of you.
post #9 of 23
Sunlion, I can sympathize with you as far as the financial aspect. There was one Christmas that my husband had just been laid off and we had just bought a house. We didn't even have the extra money to have anything special for dinner Christmas day. I remember it felt lousy. I was so frustrated trying to make ends meet, and it didn't seem like things were ever going to get better, but they did, and I know they will for you, also.

I don't know what your situation is with your husband, but it must be very difficult to feel like you're going through this by yourself. Sometimes it helps me when someone will just tell me "It'll be okay." So: It'll be okay, Sunlion. Just know I'm here, along with all these other wonderful, caring people at this site, and we care.


post #10 of 23
I have gone out and fed dumpster kitties on Christmas. These are the one you see around restaraunts and stores that eat from the trash. It started when I forgot an item I needed for Christmas dinner and went in search of an open store. I found a convenience store that was open and there were 3 feral kitties in the parking lot looking for handouts. The clerk said that they hung around and begged in the lot and people would feel sorry for them and buy them cans of sardines or cat food, but no one had fed them that day. I bought each a can of food and put some down from the bag I keep in my trunk. They were so grateful, and it started a little private tradition. I don't always find any, but I try to take a few minutes to look. I saw a cute little black kitty hanging around the back of the tattoo shop today, so I'll at least try to get to him. Other than that we just have a quiet day at home.
post #11 of 23
This really is a tough time of year. I miss my mom so much I ache, and some days I can't stop crying. Everyday is hard but the holidays are the worst. I know what you mean about wanting your mommy. Not a week goes by that I don't feel completely and utterly lost and alone at some point. Normally I don't share my feelings about how isolated I feel but I wanted you to know that I can understand the pain.

Life is hard. It's a bitch. It's unfair, and it's painful. But there is beauty, and there is hope. And that is what I cling to. Somedays are easier than others, but everyday is a fresh start, and a chance for new beginnings.

You've got the best reason in the world to embrace life, your little girl. You have so much to teach her, and her you. You are never alone because you have her.

One thing I've learned is we are so much stronger than we think we are, even if we don't feel like it.
post #12 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your kind words and thoughts. You have no idea what it means to me right now.
post #13 of 23
Sunlion....I feel for you and I hope that things are all worked out. I agree that holidays especially Christmas is a very hard and lonely time. And I totally understand where you are coming from with the finacial aspect of it all! In a way i am lucky because i do not have to worry about decorations etc as I am alone, but akll my family get paid heaps more than me and I get them gifts and I hope that they will all like them all but my sister is forever 'out doing' me and it is noticed and commented upon and to the point where a family member (no naming) even laughed about the gift that I actually went to the trouble of making over a few months (just to let you all know...it was a scented bath oil.....I made that from different herbs and baby oil - it smelt yum. A huge candle that I made from scratch and a few different toiletries which I brought) all done up in a basket. I felt so humiliated when it went around the office (as I work with with family member) that I had made the gift.....it took me months of planning and preparing....anyways I thought it was nice but all the people who that person told thought I was a cheap skate because of how it was described (I thought it looked lovely and more love had been put into it than a brought gift!)

I have my family around me and all and it is great. My Grandmother died December 27th last year, which was somewhat of a suprise to us as although she had been sick for quite some time she was fine over Christmas and she spend her last Christmas at home with my Grandfather and I spoke to her - I miss her like mad.....My grandfather (who I thought I had a very good relationship with) all of a sudden sent us (my family) and his friends an e-mail saying he hopes we all have a wonderful Christmas but he will not be sending cards this year!!! Okay fine for friends and stuff but direct family? Especially his only son (my dad).

Not only has he said that but my dad called him up and question.....and he is trying to justify his actions and he in passing said to my dad Amanda sends me jokes once in a while tell her to stop sending those!!!!! As far as I am concerend I send him jokes (cencored ones of course) about maybe one in 2 weeks and he sends me stuff aswell....but I also send him letters about once per week and all I get back from him are group e-mails - no personal letters or anything...like he cannot be bothered to keep in touch with us!

It seems that he is becoming very sour old man and not really wanting anyhting to do with my dad (which i know upsets him) I am going to be traveling to England December 26th and I was going to tell h im that i was there but now as he cannot be bothered with me/us then why should I bother....I know 2 wrongs don't make a right but we are family!!!!!

Sunlion.....I really hope you have a good Christmas and things are all worked out ((((((((HUGS)))))))
post #14 of 23
Hi there Sunlion,

Yes I can surely understand how you feel. This will not be a happy time for me either. What with Roy so ill and this being the first Christmas without my Mom. Then add to the fact that I am trying to do everything with a bad foot. But the worst part will be that I will miss KF so very much. We are still dreaming of spending a Xmas together but it wont be this year.

And yes money is a problem. With 9 grandkids to get for that will be all I can aford this year. But I did get KF and his mom some gifts! I do not buy for my children as they are all grown now with kids of their own so we stopped doing that thank goodness. Also will have all the medical bills from my foot surgery (what ins doesnt pay) and the car that broke down...sigh.

Anyhow I am just trying to focus on the good things and hope that helps. Good luck and I will be thinking of you!

post #15 of 23
Sunlion, no matter what you have us here at the site. I you want to chat or anything email or pm me. You can make this holiday very special for you and your daughter without alot of money. Spend time together doing things like baking cookies and doing crafts to make Christmas decorations. For a change on Christmas day, volunteer at a homeless shelter to help serve their Christmas lunch. I have done this and it is a wonderful feeling to help in this way. Depending on the age of your daughter, it may also be a good life lesson for her too.
post #16 of 23

Dear Sunlion :angel2::daisy:
I'm so sorry you're feeling down. I wish there was something I could do for you. It seems like we've all been there in someway or another. Many of us are still dealing with issues from long ago...I know that's of no consolation, but we can relate.
I loved Adymaries and lotsocats ideas about making cookies, and baked goods. It's a wonderful gift to give and it's inexpensive. Your daughter could help decorate baskets. There's baskets at the thrift shops for practically nothing that you can buy and when decorated, turn into such warm gifts.
Besides, like Wayne said, we all get so caught up with the glitter and pressure and forget the true meaning of Christmas. I know for myself there were many times I would shop and shop and for what I went through to get gifts...I had to ask myself.."Was it really worth it?" Not that people were undeserving, but I would've felt much better giving of myself to different charities or volunteering in some soup line. My frineds and family are far from poor. We, as a family need to pull together; we're a large family, but we're losing our family unit. I think I would have the best Christmas if we could just sit down and have a great meal together.
I wish you the very best Sunlion and it appears that your husband is depressed. The isolation; seems like a give away. There's lots of free counciling. I can remember in one thread that you stated you were Catholic. In a Catholic church here, they give free counciling. I hope this applies to your church too. Remember, we are here for you too.
Wishing you the very best
Love & Hugs,
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
For those who mentioned it, yes hubby has depression. It seems to run in his family, and there a whole thread about it somewhere around here. He takes Prozac and tells me it helps. I know there are some heavy anti-Prozac people out there, but for some folks it IS the best choice.

Actually, he saw his MD Monday for a meds review. She must be satisfied because she doesn't want to see him for 6 months. He told her how he's been feeling, and she apparently told him to think about this:

If he stays with us, what are the implications of that in 5 years? For him, for me, and for the kid.

If he leaves, what are the implication of that in 5 years, for all of us?

He told me yesterday that he wants to leave. He says he still loves me, he just wants to be alone. Apparently he has been miserable for a long time and has been afraid to tell me. He indicated that I forced him to do a bunch of things he didn't want to do, but he was afraid he'd lose us if he didn't do them. He was very tactful, but it felt like being called a domineering *itch.

Of course financially he can't leave so we are still all under one roof. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad one. We don't fight or anything, but it feels wierd to be picking the strands of our lives apart.

I feel like a complete fool. I thought things were okay. I knew we'd been under a lot of stress, but I thought it was getting better and we'd even done some fun things lately. At least, he said at the time they were fun, now I don't know what to believe. So apparently I was drifting along thinking everything was okay, and it was actually horrible and he couldn't wait to get out of it. I was making plans for the future, I was thinking of going to the movies this weekend and we'd been talking about another baby, and now . . . I don't even know who this man is.

He says it is his fault for not saying something sooner. I said, let's figure out what's wrong and fix it. You know, if you aren't happy, make some changes and see what happens. He said, he felt he had backed himself into a corner. I said, so come out of the corner, if I'm not keeping him there. And he said he didn't want to. He said he was too tired and he didn't want to try any more. So what can I say in the face of that? I would keep trying, but there's no point in forcing someone to stay where they don't want to be.

So. Merry [expletive deleted] Christmas.
post #18 of 23
It must be difficult...I've been on the other side of this (sort of)...a few years ago, I felt like your husband...I didn't want to do anything with anybody, especially my wife...while I've never been diagnosed with depression, I just felt like my wife and I were living divergent lives...
It finally came to a rather ugly head which erupted and almost cost us our marriage...root cause was a severe lack of communication coupled with resentment at the very differences that drew us to each other...we both needed to grow more...
Long story short, we counseled for 6 months, and now, 2 years later, we're better than we ever expected...
This holiday season has been terribly hard for me to get caught up in...my perspectives and priorities have changed radically...I agree 100% with Adymarie in that you can give no greater gift to your daughter than time...in the long run (since she may not understand now) she will remember the time you spend with her more than any overpriced bauble, no matter how bad she thinks she wants it now...

Sorry for rambling, but don't give up...

post #19 of 23
Well, I can say this:
IF your husband truly wants to leave and not give your marriage another chance, I think that no matter what you say or do, he probably won't change his mind. Of course, all of us here wish and hope for you that you are able to work thru it all, and be stronger and happier in the end.
I know from experience that sometimes if one person doesn't want it to end and the other one does, well sometimes it just can't be worked out at that given point and maybe a little time apart is in order. My brother and his wife have had very similar problems ( without the depression part ) and ended up separating for nearly a year. ( They have 3 children and it was so hard for all involved). But do you know what?? After 10 months, and after realizing that they had "TRUE LOVE", they are now back together and doing great. So, maybe a little break will make your hubby see the light.
I feel for you and your child. Especially at the holidays! I hope from the bottom of my heart that it all works out for the best. Good Luck to you and your family.
post #20 of 23

I have no "great words of wisdom", but i do know that it isn't your fault.. If you went along thinking everyhting was fine, then you clearly had no indication otherwise. Notice I say clear.... don't for one minute think, I should have known.... maybe if I had....
few people in the world can truly read minds, and fewer still can actually know hints when they are brought out...
Point is, it takes both people to to let thier feelings be known, don't take the responsibility for something that isn't yours to take...

As for Christmas... well, I don't have any answers there either, I have a hard enough time not getting caught up in the commersialism of it all myself... but I did recieve this and when I read it, I thought of this thread and the reason for its existance...

Twas The Night Before Christmas....Mom Style
Twas the night before Christmas, when all thru the abode
Only one creature was stirring, & she was cleaning the commode.
The children were finally sleeping, all snug in their beds,
while visions of N-64 & Barbie, flipped through their heads.

The dad was snoring in front of the TV,
with a half-constructed bicycle propped on his knee.
So only the mom heard the reindeer hooves clatter,
Which made her sigh, "Now what is the matter?"

With toilet bowl brush still clutched in her hand,
She descended the stairs, & saw the old man.
He was covered with ashes & soot, which fell with a shrug,
"Oh great," muttered the mom, "Now I have to clean the rug."

"Ho Ho Ho!" cried Santa, "I'm glad you're awake.
Your gift was especially difficult to make."
"Thanks, Santa, but all I want is time alone."
"Exactly!" he chuckled, "So, I've made you a clone."

"A clone?" she muttered, "What good is that?"
"Run along, Santa, I've no time for chit chat."
Then out walked the clone - The mother's twin,
Same hair, same eyes, same double chin.

"She'll cook, she'll dust, she'll mop every mess.
You'll relax, take it easy, watch The Young & The Restless."
"Fantastic!" the mom cheered. "My dream has come true!
I'll shop, I'll read, I'll sleep a night through!"

>From the room above, the youngest did fret.
"Mommy?! Come quickly, I'm scared & I'm wet."
The clone replied, "I'm coming, sweetheart."
"Hey," the mom smiled, "She sure knows her part."

The clone changed the small one & hummed her a tune,
as she bundled the child in a blanket cocoon.
"You're the best mommy ever. I really love you."
The clone smiled & sighed, "And I love you, too."

The mom frowned & said, "Sorry, Santa, no deal.
That's my child's LOVE she is trying to steal."
Smiling wisely Santa said, "To me it is clear,
Only one loving mother is needed here."

The mom kissed her child & tucked her in bed.
"Thank You, Santa, for clearing my head.
I sometimes forget, it won't be very long,
when they'll be too old for my cradle & song."

The clock on the mantle began to chime.
Santa whispered to the clone, "It works every time."
With the clone by his side Santa said "Goodnight.
Merry Christmas, dear Mom, You will be all right."

Sometimes we need reminding of what life is all about. Especially at times during the Holiday season, when all we seem to do is clean and bake and shop and and and and and and and....
You get the picture, I'm sure. So stop for a moment and hug that little one so special, whether he/she is 2 months or 22
years, or even older than that. For they are the Gift that God gave us in life...and what a gift to be treasured, far above any other!

May the real meaning of Christmas be with you all this year.


post #21 of 23
Thread Starter 
I feel like I've lived out the Elisabeth Kubler-Ross 7 stages of grief. I did the self-pity thing, I've been angry, I'm sort of resigned to things now. I kind of miss the anger part, it gave me the drive and energy to get some things done.

I don't get it. He says he wants more space, but he gives me a cel phone so he can reach me. He doesn't want a Christmas present from me, but he keeps giving me things, like dvd's or computer stuff. It's like, make up your mind! And while this is very kind of him - if confusing - I feel rather invisible because it doesn't really reflect what I want or what I do with my time. It's as if he doesn't know who I am, he's buying things he'd like for himself. Which I suppose is okay, just . . . I don't know.

He called me Tues. to tell me he didn't go to lunch with his office chums. I guess they all took a long lunch and went shopping together at Fry's, his favorite store. But he wanted to be alone. It was kind of a revelation to him, that it wasn't me (even though he's been saying that all along), he really didn't want to be around anyone in a social situation. I guess that was good for him.


I have no intention of keeping him if he doesn't want to stay. What I want is, for him to want to stay. But if he doesn't want to stay, I don't want him. Problem is, he can't seem to make up his mind what he wants, and I'm torn between not wanting to put up with the waffling and the fact that I love him and want him here.


It's actually good to know we aren't the only ones. I am surprised by how many other women have gone through this with their husbands (you are the only man to say anything to me about it, but as an at-home mom I don't see very many men). I am also surprised how many people are or have been depressed. I wish he would do counselling, but I can't see that happening.


When I was single, I missed my dad horribly. Now that I have a family, I miss my mom constantly. There are so many times I want to call her and have a good long talk. What kills me is my daughter's relationship with her Grandma. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad they're close. I just wish she knew my mom too. And these days I sure get tired of being the adult all the time, I'd love to just throw myself on the sofa and let someone bring me hot soup and Kleenex.

Thanks again everyone for all your kindness and support.
post #22 of 23

You have great wisdom. I wish there were more people out there like you. Happy Holidays to you, Sandie and Kylee.

post #23 of 23
I just now read this, I have been offline for a week, and I am so sorry things are going the way they are for you....you are such a beautiful person, and I wish there was something I could do or say to make this holiday season better for you.
You have gotten alot of really good advice here.
You are very much loved here, and you are in our thoughts and prayers.
I know christmas can be a really rough holiday.
This is my second Christmas without my father, and my 5th without my mother.
I know how you feel about Hubby. Mine goes through bouts of depression often, and he doesn't want to talk to me for days sometimes.
I feel like when we do talk, he just wants to pick a fight.
I know he loves me, but it still really hurts.
I hope you are feeling better now, and I also hope that if you need to talk further you will talk to us, we will always be here for you!!!!!
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