I'm At A Loss For Words
So the holidays are coming up and my husbands EXTENDED family has a gift exchange $40 for every person. There are over 40 people. The last several years the majority of adults have been exchanging gift cards instead of gifts. Since the beginning I've been asking to not put my name in, and have been told by my mother-in-law to just go along with it, it's tradition. The last couple years names have been drawn with only a few people present -- no chance to back out of it because the girls on a shopping spree and have already begun to purchase gifts. I know for a fact that several people think that this is, for lack of better wording, ridiculous and expensive. I don't usually voice my opinion about conflict unless I have a solution ready to present. So I made a suggestion for each family to give a gift to a child -- equal ratio, perfect. And I presented a solution for grown and newborn children to become involved. Simple right? I suggested a vote. Whoa, no, no, no -- everything was blown way out of proportion. I have received so much hateful words, guilt trips, exagerations about breaking the family apart and taking away their traditions and memories. The worst is that my sister-in-law has taken it upon herself to reprimand me in front of my husband and children and all of the people coming out of my husbands coworkers -- not only about making the suggestion but about me personally, and blaming me for making such a drama for her mother and the family to deal with. The oldest brother of the family is hosting Christmas this year had already been planning to simplify things a little and so he immediately let everyone know the plan and he is sticking to his guns. But I opened my mouth first -- which I'm usually the quiet one -- so now I've ruined Christmas and all of the holidays and birthdays that come before it and I've taken quite a slashing. I know I didn't do anything mean or wrong and my husband is standing up for me -- he's usually the quiet one too -- so now I'm being blamed for his behavior too. He did let me know that he could not stand up to his mom like he did to his sister, but if things get worse I trust him to protect our family. Still, it hurts so much. Tonight was trick-or-treat and only half of my husbands immediate family showed up -- another family tradition out the window thanks to me. I know this will be covered over in an attempt have the perfect family, but I know what goes on behind one's back -- it's what they do. Someone actually asked, "why didn't someone say something about this." I did say something, and now I have the answer to that question -- because when you mess with what the girls want you will be slaughtered, drug under the bus, and brutally reprimanded. All with fake plastic smiles. They compare their family to the Oak tree. But even an oak bends and sways with the wind, whispering gently, so as not to topple with the wind.