New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up... - Talk About Marriage
Dealing with Grief and Loss The grieving process is difficult. When we lose someone close to us, we go through many different emotions.

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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 11:08 AM Thread Starter
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New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

My wife and I welcomed our first child into the world in April. Just 6 weeks later, my father succumbed to long-term illness and passed away. While my wife was supportive for weeks before and after his death, I feel like any display of emotion on my part is seen as weak.

As a more specific example, we are trying to come up with plans for what to do for Thanksgiving. My brother is married to a woman who doesn't really get along with my mother or wife. He and his wife are holding a Thanksgiving dinner at their house. However, my mom chooses not to go, and told us she would rather stay home and have dinner at her house. My brother and sister-in-law are still throwing the dinner at their house, but my wife and I, along with my mother, do not want to attend.

The problem, however, lies with my wife. She will not be receptive to the idea of having Thanksgiving dinner at my mother's house. My mother and my wife get along great, they talk on the phone more than I talk to my mom on the phone. But my wife is insistent on having "our own traditions" now that we have a baby. I don't usually ask for a lot, but I told her it's going to be a hard year for my mom, so I'd like us to just go over there and have dinner at her house, to make it easier on her.

After a lot of arguing, we are still at a stand-still. My wife suggested I ask my mother to come eat dinner at our house instead, but that would require us lying to my brother about it, as her whole excuse for not going to his house was dependent on her insisting she stay at her own house for Thanksgiving.

The whole thing makes me very emotional and sad, because I miss my father dearly, and I want to do what's best for my mom and have her surrounded by family in her house. But my wife will not budge, and is insisting that I do what she wants. I don't feel very valued or respected.

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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 02:43 PM
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Re: New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

Been there kind of...

In my opinion, your mother is being rude not to attend the dinner at your brothers, but that's her choice.

I agree with your wife that it's good to start your own traditions. I wish I had insisted more on that instead of allowing my in-laws to dictate our Holidays.

Invite your mom to your house and if she choses to lie, that's on her.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
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Re: New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

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Originally Posted by LonelyinLove View Post
Been there kind of...

In my opinion, your mother is being rude not to attend the dinner at your brothers, but that's her choice.

I agree with your wife that it's good to start your own traditions. I wish I had insisted more on that instead of allowing my in-laws to dictate our Holidays.

Invite your mom to your house and if she choses to lie, that's on her.
Interesting perspective. My mother had actually told my brother that she'd planned on having Thanksgiving at home home before he had told her his own plans, and then he still insists on having it at his house (with his rude in-laws and friends also attending). So I don't personally think she's being rude here.

I am not against the idea of starting our own traditions, however, personally I would like to spend the time and do my mother the courtesy of having her first Thanksgiving without her husband the way she wants it to be -- at home.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 05:56 PM
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Re: New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

I understand about your mom's first holiday since your father passed.

Your baby is young and won't know the difference, so in that case I would say go to your mom's. There are lots of holidays to start your own traditions when the little one isn't so little.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 12:05 PM
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Re: New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

Congratulations on the birth of your new baby. My condolences for the loss of your father.

There is a way you can accommodate your mother and also have your own "new" traditions.

In my family, we go to the "big" Easter/Thanksgiving/Christmas at my inlaw's house (I don't have parents so no need to compromise there). However we also do our own thing at home too.

For Thanksgiving for instance, here it is on Monday in October (Canada). We have the big dinner on the weekend, usually Saturday or Sunday at my inlaw's home. On Monday, we cook our own dinner at home for me, my spouse and two kids.

On Christmas, we typically have our Christmas dinner just the four of us on Christmas Eve at home. We open presents in the morning on Christmas day and then head off to the in-laws in the afternoon to have dinner, presents and spend the night or two through to Boxing day.

Basically, to sum it up, you CAN have both. Heck, as for Thanksgiving, you could have all three. Go to mom's, stay home and go to brother's house as long as you all just compromised and agreed on different days. Back in my hometown, I usually have two or three separate *big* dinners to attend for most holidays. Some of them with the same people in attendance, just at different people's houses with their own traditions. My family back home compromises by hosting their dinners on different days. We make a weekend of it. It works for all of us.

Another compromise would be to rotate the holidays among family. So this year Thanksgiving is at mom's, then Christmas is at your house, then Easter next year is at your brother's etc. Alternatively, this year it's at mom's, then you get to host Thanksgiving next year, then your brother in 2016 etc.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 01:04 PM
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Re: New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

If my husband just died I wouldnt really want to go out and have thankgiving at a fa,ily dinner either. I would rather stay at my own home and have my kids come to me.

I think you wife is being a little selfish. Your baby isnt even a year old yet and wont remember their first thankgiving. It wouldnt kill her to start your own family tradition next year.

You cant force your wife to go, but maybe put your foot down and say you will go to your mum's with the baby whether she likes it or not and she can choose to follow or spend thanksgiving alone.

If she dislikes your mother then i would understand but she likes her and gets along with her so i dont get why she cant make a sacrifice for her mother in law who just lost her husband and most improtantly for her hubsand who just lost his father.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-10-2015, 03:19 AM
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Re: New father in April, lost my own Father in May, holidays coming up...

Sorry for your loss OP
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