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Thread: Meeting Family at Christmas

  1. #1

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    Meeting Family at Christmas

    My boyfriend and I have been dating for 6 months. We live (separately) very close to the town he grew up in, and he works for the town that he grew up in. I've already met his parents several times. My parents are about a 3 hour drive from where we live. He has never met them since he just doesn't ever have weekends off to make the drive up there with me.

    My boyfriend is a cop and had to work on Thanksgiving, so that made figuring out that holiday easy. I'm a lawyer, so I at least don't have to be in my office on normal holidays. He is off this year for Christmas Eve and Christmas day and I asked him last week if he would like to do one day with his family and one day with my family. I told him to think about it and let me know later.

    Well, last night one of his friends asked if my boyfriend was going to go meet my family over Christmas. My boyfriend said he doesn't know, but will probably just pick up overtime both days and stay home.

    I'm feeling frustrated about it. I come from a very large and very close family. He has his mom, dad, and sister and that's about it. His dad is a cop as well so holidays in his family are definitely very different since one or both of them is always working. But, my family is very important to me and this is really the first opportunity he has had to meet them, and it seems like he has zero interest in doing so. I certainly don't want to nag him or drag him across state lines to go. I'm also trying to be understanding that holidays are just different for him than me.

    Am I being unreasonable in being frustrated? Any advice on how I should deal with this, or if I should just forget about it? Thank you!

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    There is nothing to "deal with". You invited him and he declined. That's ok. Perhaps he would rather spend it locally with his circle of friends, family, etc. Try to stop rushing things. Then you'll be less frustrated. A much more appropriate invitation at 6 mos of dating would have been going up for a low key weekend day for a few hours when he has off. It's way too much pressure to force a large close knit family on him over the holidays.

    Don't overwhelm people or try to make this as if you are a very long term couple. Slow down and allow others to be who they are and be with their people. Notice he's not trying to make you be with his family over the holidays. This may a good time to note that you are incompatible when it comes to families and expectations.
    Originally Posted by lazzara
    My boyfriend and I have been dating for 6 months. I asked him last week if he would like to do one day with his family and one day with my family.

    My boyfriend said he doesn't know, but will probably just pick up overtime both days and stay home.

    my family is very important to me and this is really the first opportunity he has had to meet them, and it seems like he has zero interest in doing so.

  3. #3

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    Originally Posted by Wiseman2
    There is nothing to "deal with". You invited him and he declined. That's ok. Perhaps he would rather spend it locally with his circle of friends, family, etc. Try to stop rushing things. Then you'll be less frustrated. A much more appropriate invitation at 6 mos of dating would have been going up for a low key weekend day for a few hours when he has off. It's way too much pressure to force a large close knit family on him over the holidays.

    Don't overwhelm people or try to make this as if you are a very long term couple. Slow down and allow others to be who they are and be with their people. Notice he's not trying to make you be with his family over the holidays. This may a good time to note that you are incompatible when it comes to families and expectations.
    I am certainly not overwhelming him. I asked once and told him to think about it so he didn't feel pressured to give a response on the spot. I never even brought it up again. I guess what is frustrating is that he has asked me to meet his parents, his coworkers, his supervisors, all his friends, and even aunts and uncles when we took a vacation close to where they live. I have even spent time with his sister without him around. He has fully integrated me into his life but seems to have no interest in meeting my family. Obviously we both see this as a serious relationship or he wouldn't have had me start to develop relationships with those with whom he is close. I struggle to see how it is "inappropriate" at this point to expect him to want to get to know my family when he has asked me to get to know his.

  4. #4
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    Maybe he really needs the money. Iím sure he can earn double time working Xmas, and a lot of people probably donít want to work that day so he can help out a co-worker who wants the day off. Maybe heís just not ready to meet your family. Itís a big step.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member itsallgrand's Avatar
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    Rather than frustrated, can you be curious? I don't know your bf but there may be so many different reasons why he is declining. A simple, warm chat may reveal parts of him you are still getting to know.

    I remember the first time my guy came to my families Xmas. He was wiped - and he's an extroverted person. But similar to your bf, his family is smaller and Christmas was often muted with a parent working etc. In my family, it's everyone and their dog in a place and constant people in and out and it goes for days. Even though he was already comfortable with my mom and brother, he wasn't used to such an onslaught of people all around and he did get burnt out. Also, Christmas, I found out, to be a sore spot for him, with it bringing up feelings of sadness. He had often worked during the holidays as a way to cope with it previously. So there was adjustments there, for him to enjoy it again.

    All this to say, it's in your interest to use this as a learning opportunity rather than take it to your heart as a hit to you or your family. And if he knows him meeting the fam is important to you, it will happen... maybe he needs to be eased in like wiseman said.. I really do understand how it may not be the best time for him to meet them for the first time.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Noting wrong with meeting your family. However why a huge holiday for the first time? Invite him up for the day one time when it's a normal weekend day he has off. Why haven't you done that?
    Originally Posted by lazzara
    I am certainly not overwhelming him. I struggle to see how it is "inappropriate" at this point to expect him to want to get to know my family when he has asked me to get to know his.

  8. #7
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    At six months, now is not the time to meet your folks during a major holiday. Too much going on. And it's 3 hours away! I would take a weekday off, and you both can go make a day of it traveling up, or have you and the folks meet in the middle, and go to lunch or dinner, so it's only 1.5 hours drive between you four.

  9. #8
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    Why not invite your parents out to dinner sometime - when they schedule to come visit you, introduce them.

    his coworkers, his supervisors, all his friends, and even aunts and uncles when we took a vacation close to where they live.

    the key is "close to where they live". And i am sure some of these meetings were brief.

    My guy came to a holiday with me fairly early on - but it was a quick visit -- it was about an hour or so and then we left and went to our next stop. If you are introducing him for the first time and its a 3 hour drive - he's a captive audience - that's a lot to ask at 6 months.

    So either take your next vacation on a route that will take you near your parents where you can meet them for dinner, or surely they visit YOU on occasion.

    Holidays are tough for first responders - staffing is always short. And if they are going to work, might as well make the OT.

  10. #9
    Gold Member thisisrichey's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lazzara
    My boyfriend and I have been dating for 6 months. We live (separately) very close to the town he grew up in, and he works for the town that he grew up in. I've already met his parents several times. My parents are about a 3 hour drive from where we live. He has never met them since he just doesn't ever have weekends off to make the drive up there with me.

    My boyfriend is a cop and had to work on Thanksgiving, so that made figuring out that holiday easy. I'm a lawyer, so I at least don't have to be in my office on normal holidays. He is off this year for Christmas Eve and Christmas day and I asked him last week if he would like to do one day with his family and one day with my family. I told him to think about it and let me know later.

    Well, last night one of his friends asked if my boyfriend was going to go meet my family over Christmas. My boyfriend said he doesn't know, but will probably just pick up overtime both days and stay home.

    I'm feeling frustrated about it. I come from a very large and very close family. He has his mom, dad, and sister and that's about it. His dad is a cop as well so holidays in his family are definitely very different since one or both of them is always working. But, my family is very important to me and this is really the first opportunity he has had to meet them, and it seems like he has zero interest in doing so. I certainly don't want to nag him or drag him across state lines to go. I'm also trying to be understanding that holidays are just different for him than me.

    Am I being unreasonable in being frustrated? Any advice on how I should deal with this, or if I should just forget about it? Thank you!
    Yes.. but he is being JUST AS REASONABLE in wanting to maybe have 2 days rest from his job (as being a cop is QUITE A PHYSICAL and draining job!) I can totally see why he'd not see travelling across a state line to meet the gf's big family for the first time and thus be "on display" and "tested" --- you can not deny that he will be --- if he only has 2 days off for the holidays.

    Let him have THIS holiday, then bring up much earlier next year about planning to meet your family next year (say late summer.. gives him 6 mos to get prepared and work out his schedule).

  11. #10
    Platinum Member Snny's Avatar
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    I am a daughter of a fire captain. Though heís not a cop, police and firefighters have very similar work environments and system.

    One piece I will ask you to consider:

    You seem very involved with large family gatherings (you said very close) and spending time over the holidays. Thereís nothing wrong with that since that is your family culture, but how ridged are your expectations for involving family members in all occasions -especially the major holidays? I ask this because in police/firefighter families, it is a rare occasion for a family member to have off on holidays- especially Christmas time when they can earnBOTH overtime and Holiday pay. We either celebrated the day before OR the day after the holiday.

    So in the grand scheme, will you be ok with spending the holidays alone or with your own family, or will it cause resentment? Donít just look at this now, but in the future of your relationship with this man. Just like in military relationships, when you marry a police officer, their line of work will affect your family dynamic. My dad personally knows some firefighters at his station who ended up in divorces because their spouses expected more family time around the holidays, but they still had to come to work.

    Please take some time and think about this. This could be a major incompatibility for you. I also agree that bringing a new date to a HUGE family holiday function like Christmas can make your boyfriend feel out of place since he doesnít know anyone.

    Edit:apparently F*s is a bad word? Itís an abbreviation for firefighters

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