26 Answers

I have some relatives that can get extremely cranky at the smallest things during Christmas time. They sometimes ruin the whole season – for everyone. I can’t fix the past (ie their childhood). What should I do?

Posted anonymously, 25th November 2018

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  • Not everyone like to celebrate Christmas and it is renowned for families bickering. Bring it to their attention and stress that you just want everyone to have a nice day. They may just listen.

  • Ask them what would ake Christmas easier – they may not even realise what they’re doing.

  • Remember it’s only one day. I’m learning to bite my tongue too and let people have their bitch and moan without arching up. Sometimes for the sake of a nice family day it’s worth it.

  • Maybe gently ask them what’s upsetting them, perhaps they need a shoulder to lean on.

  • If they have specific triggers try avoid those maybe even ask them what triggers them. Other than that depends on how cranky they get if it’s just sulking carry on and they should come around if it’s more than that you may need to address it with them.

  • If you can, try and remind them that Christmas is about spending time together and enjoying that time. I know that can be easier said than done.

  • Maybe a cheeky sign at the front door telling them to leave their grumps outside or a little gift on the front door for each person, kind of like an advent calendar with something silly or cheeky in it to get them in the spirit, silly hats or santa beards, elf ears etc

  • If a restaurant can not be used or going to a park is out of the question maybe a timed advent could be the answer. We have only a small gatherings her but years ago we had to attended Christmas’s for the full family. Those I dreaded due to fights. Apart from you moving somewhere else try to keep the peace somehow.

  • Taking control and giving them roles can help. That way they may complain but there is equality and hopefully they stop being so stubborn(set in their way).

  • I feel it is time for a change and most importantly a change of venue. Seriously think about going to a restaurant …if you all buy presents for everyone then maybe a secret Santa is worth thinking about and keep the amount spent small. One gift instead of many will save money and the money saved can be put toward the restaurant bill. The restaurant cooks for you, cleans up after you and seeing they are in an environment/open space with other dinners around the conversation should be lighter and more pleasant and if not remind them other dinners around are seeking a joyous day. Another option if money is an issue is go to the park, enjoy the fresh air and celebrate out doors. Wishing you and yours a blessed season.

  • Ignore it! Don’t ruin your Xmas because of them. Happiness is contagious

  • What about planning activities or games that are fun and silly? That might lighten the mood and enable people to enjoy the day rather than just sitting and talking and being negative. Games like ‘charades’ or Pictionary can be fun. Laughter can be the best medicine :)

  • The eating out at a restaurant idea is genius! It caps the time that you spend together and less stress for you. Nothing to stop you going out for a walk between courses… for big deep breaths.

  • My first thought: take distance !

  • I think you better make a rule that anyone that comes to your home must be happy. It doesn’t make sense at all to have people in your own home if they are miserable.

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