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Old 11-07-2016, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
12,305 posts, read 10,052,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chattyneighbor View Post
I'm wondering what most people think is proper protocol - say you lost a close family member over the summer and now its the holidays.

You usually host at least one of the holidays - should you still do it and would anybody expect you too?

I'm thinking - sit it out - enjoy the holidays but at someone else's home. Show respect and skip the big party.

Yeah or Nah?
Yes, it's sad when someone dies, but you didn't die. You HAVE to keep on living. I never stopped hosting events because someone died. There are other people to think of. Holidays don't stop because someone died. And we lost both of my husband's parents around Christmas - different years. Not to mention other people. My own grandmother died on my birthday. I still celebrated my birthday. She would have been pissed if I didn't! She would have kicked my butt.
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Old 11-07-2016, 12:48 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,483 posts, read 15,923,785 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
I'll share a personal story. My FIL died just before Thanksgiving and it effected my husband very much. A month later, he was too sad to get up on Christmas morning do our regular immediate family activities of opening one present, making and eating blueberry muffins, then slowly opening more presents, etc., etc. He did not get out of bed until late afternoon.

Our children, who had also loved their grandfather very, very much were heartbroken that we "did not celebrate Christmas" like usual.

I was very surprised when even years later they mentioned their disappointment in not doing our usual activities. The interesting thing was that they were not little children but in 8th grade and a senior in HS at the time. They said that they would have been "comforted" by spending Christmas as usual, especially since it was our last Christmas before our oldest went away to college. They said that by not doing our usual activities as a family, (going to church, eating muffins, etc.) it caused them to be much more sad and depressed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Idlewile View Post
I think this personal anecdote speaks volumes. There is comfort and reassurance in routine. There can be comfort and hope in tradition as well. (I need to "spread it around" before I can hit you w/ a another rep but thanks for sharing.)
I agree.

For the people who felt that my children were being selfish, I may not have explained it well enough. My husband had no memory at all of that Christmas, even shortly afterwards, but our children remembered & were hurt that he did not try to help them with their grief by following our usual routines and traditions. They weren't obsessed with it, but it came up occasionally later in conversations.

Their grandfather absolutely loved Christmas and he would not have wanted his grandchildren, even at that age, to have Christmas cancelled because of his death (which is basically what happened that year).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ss20ts View Post
Yes, it's sad when someone dies, but you didn't die. You HAVE to keep on living. I never stopped hosting events because someone died. There are other people to think of. Holidays don't stop because someone died. And we lost both of my husband's parents around Christmas - different years. Not to mention other people. My own grandmother died on my birthday. I still celebrated my birthday. She would have been pissed if I didn't! She would have kicked my butt.
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Old 11-07-2016, 01:04 PM
 
Location: Finally the house is done and we are in Port St. Lucie!
3,488 posts, read 1,792,183 times
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I don't think there is any set etiquette for this, in this day and age.

I'm sorry for whatever circumstances, that have occurred in your life, that leads you to asking this question. Holidays can be stressful and I wish you well.
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Old 11-07-2016, 02:29 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA, USA
900 posts, read 469,607 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
Keep family traditions, speak of and remember the one who has passed. Maybe if you included others in the past parties, this year, make it just for a small intimate group.
My sentiments exactly. Have the occasion "in memory of" ...and honor them in some way. Here's an idea. Set a place for him/her at the table (like for Abraham, as the observant Jews do), and take time to talk about what the holiday meant for them, or relate some memories of them. As long as there are memories of a loved one, they live on.....it can be a good, healing thing...
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Old 11-07-2016, 02:36 PM
 
Location: N of citrus, S of decent corn
34,563 posts, read 42,724,437 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmm0484 View Post
My sentiments exactly. Have the occasion "in memory of" ...and honor them in some way. Here's an idea. Set a place for him/her at the table (like for Abraham, as the observant Jews do), and take time to talk about what the holiday meant for them, or relate some memories of them. As long as there are memories of a loved one, they live on.....it can be a good, healing thing...
If I were the dead uncle, this would make me happy..others in the family gathering together for a holiday, and raising a glass to me.
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Old 11-07-2016, 03:46 PM
 
16,785 posts, read 19,639,274 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foundapeanut View Post
Do what feels right FOR you.

No one should be upset cause you take a year off of hosting.

Germaine- Kids only think about themselves. Life changes. Time for kids to grow up and learn that its not always about them. Years later they complain about it? We could all be so lucky to have that kind of entitled life.

What about how your poor husband felt? Guess his feelings weren't that important to them.
Exactly, teens well they're selfish. But adults still whining about this, how entitled can you be?
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Old 11-07-2016, 03:51 PM
 
16,785 posts, read 19,639,274 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
I agree.

For the people who felt that my children were being selfish, I may not have explained it well enough. My husband had no memory at all of that Christmas, even shortly afterwards, but our children remembered & were hurt that he did not try to help them with their grief by following our usual routines and traditions. They weren't obsessed with it, but it came up occasionally later in conversations.

Their grandfather absolutely loved Christmas and he would not have wanted his grandchildren, even at that age, to have Christmas cancelled because of his death (which is basically what happened that year).
They're adults now, they still bring it up. That is selfish behavior. Doesn't matter if your husband has no memory of it now(he is ill now I know and I'm sorry for that).

It was his father, as hard as it is to lose a grandparent you're close to, to a lose a parent is worse.

You can't see it but read back what you wrote. "their grief", what about his grief?

Shame on them, especially now that he is ill.

Just a sign of the times it our "all about me " world.
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Old 11-07-2016, 05:05 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
18,984 posts, read 10,047,592 times
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I lost my dad 3 years ago. Every holiday since then has been hard but we still do them because they are still important for those who are left.

As for who hosts, I think if you feel up to it and want to do it, there is certainly nothing inappropriate about doing so. But I also think people will understand if you just aren't able to take it on quite yet. I'm single so I know how hard it is to host a big event on your own, esp. if you were used to having a spouse to help out. My kid helps but he's only 12 and not too happy in the kitchen so there's only so much he can do.
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Old 11-07-2016, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,483 posts, read 15,923,785 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
I agree.

For the people who felt that my children were being selfish, I may not have explained it well enough. My husband had no memory at all of that Christmas, even shortly afterwards, but our children remembered & were hurt that he did not try to help them with their grief by following our usual routines and traditions. They weren't obsessed with it, but it came up occasionally later in conversations.

Their grandfather absolutely loved Christmas and he would not have wanted his grandchildren, even at that age, to have Christmas cancelled because of his death (which is basically what happened that year).
Quote:
Originally Posted by seain dublin View Post
Exactly, teens well they're selfish. But adults still whining about this, how entitled can you be?
Quote:
Originally Posted by seain dublin View Post
They're adults now, they still bring it up. That is selfish behavior. Doesn't matter if your husband has no memory of it now(he is ill now I know and I'm sorry for that).

It was his father, as hard as it is to lose a grandparent you're close to, to a lose a parent is worse.

You can't see it but read back what you wrote. "their grief", what about his grief?

Shame on them, especially now that he is ill.
Just a sign of the times it our "all about me " world.
I'll make one more comment and then I'm off. Their grandfather died 15 years ago and between my two children it was mentioned perhaps three or four times (since they mentioned it at the time and later that winter) to me or to others not to their father. And each time (after that winter) it was in reference to how to celebrate an upcoming holiday after another death in their extended family not complaining about what happened to them.

One example was when a cousin asked my son, when they were both about age 30, how to handle celebrating Christmas with her two young children, after the recent death of her grandmother. This is when our son told her not to just ignore or cancel Christmas like his father did twelve years earlier. He brought it up not to complain but to share what, in his opinion, not to do in a similar situation.

Last edited by germaine2626; 11-07-2016 at 06:11 PM..
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Old 11-07-2016, 08:59 PM
 
Location: Tucson for awhile longer
8,874 posts, read 12,921,392 times
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My mother was hit very hard by the unexpected death of my father one April. Two month later my mother had a significant birthday that normally would have been celebrated with a big bash. I knew she wasn't up for that, so I gave her a quiet dinner party. I invited her best friends, the people who had supported her during my father's surprising illness, and said no gifts. I cooked and served a nice sit-down dinner in her dining room and did all the clean up. She was surrounded by people who had nothing but kind thoughts for her and it turned out to be a good day for her and I had an opportunity to thank her friends. She would never have agreed to attend what would have been billed as a traditional "birthday party."

So I'm in favor of marking the holiday, but in a different subdued way.
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