FENCE, on the

The signs of the season are everywhere. Falling leaves. Chillier temps. And even Christmas displays at Home Depot (yes, this is too soon!)

With holidays looming, I inevitably start thinking about the celebratory meals and gatherings I will either host, or attend, to mark them. Tradition calls for us to get together and I’m excited just to think about it.

But, here’s a dilemma that a lot of people experience at this time of year: How do you handle the holidays when a regular at the table that everybody loves brings someone they do not? 

It seems like every group has that one on-again, off-again couple who you’ve tiptoed around for year after year of holidays, depending on whether it’s “on” or “off.” A lot of the holiday fun is hijacked because of it, and the atmosphere is tense. But there is still that obligation to invite the person.

Or is there? I’m interested in hearing some opinion on this.

When and how do you take a stand? I think of the saying that you make decisions based on the greater good. But of course that’s easier said than done. It’s tricky to know the right thing to do.

Do you  invite them both and hope persona non grata stays home? Ask one and not the other? Exclude them both? None of the options are very good.

In my view, life is too precious to go through the motions for even one second more than necessary. But then there’s that nagging little voice that keeps whispering about charity and kindness, even when it’s not deserved.


About Michele

I am a freelance writer with three kids, two cats, and a dog with thyroid disease. I'm bouncing back from a divorce and making the most of every day. There is so much beauty around me. I am grateful!
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One Response to FENCE, on the

  1. mmm61 says:

    I think you already know what you will do. You will invite them both, because even though one of these people is ill-mannered, you are not. I have been faced with a similar dilemma – not a couple, but an individual – and have grudgingly come down to the need to welcome everyone to the table – whether I like them or not. I grin and bear it, knowing that this kind of inclusion, unfortunately, is part of what the holidays are all about.

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