Holidays as an untraditional family

In today’s episode, we’re discussing navigating the holidays as an untraditional family : i.e., you’re single, don’t have children, aren’t married… This is a complex topic and we break it down as two women who are living life as an untraditional family.

We share our tips for “making it” through this holiday season and we hope that you learn more ways to create your own traditions, find new techniques to dealing with triggered emotions, and that you are able to enjoy this holiday season.

Weekly Love and Hate

Christine Love: Christmas music on XM, Hallmark movies and Holiday cups at Starbucks
“Costs zero dollars to worry about yourself.”
Lindsay Love: To go along with this week’s episode, I was able to go trick-or-treating with my niece, and J and I dressed up for the occasion. 

Christine Hate: How women talk about ourselves and to each other
Lindsay Hate: This is very random, but, I’ve seen all of these post about Adele and how she’s lost weight. She went to Drake’s birthday party and there have been countless articles dedicated to “how good she looks” and the weight she’s lost. Why does it matter? Why do we have to focus on the looks/weight of this extremely talented woman? Why?

Holidays as an untraditional family

Holiday’s as an Untraditional Family

  • Create your own traditions: if you’re single, meet with girlfriends. Have a night out, do a craft, have a hallmark Christmas movie night. I recently got together with a couple of friends to do a pumpkin painting night, and we’re already brainstorming crafts for the coming holidays. (Lindsay)
  • Since we don’t have kids, we travel after Christmas. We don’t buy one another gifts – instead, we go somewhere. It’s our tradition. We’ve also started watching planes, trains, and automobiles the night before thanksgiving, and go trick-or-treating with my niece. Find people to celebrate with! (Lindsay)
  • Another thing that is more of a pet peeve I guess, but, in previous jobs when you don’t have children, you’re often expected to work holidays/work late. I’ve had jobs schedule me to work late because I didn’t have kids. One: I was usually the only one who had to travel for the holidays as my family does not live in the same town as me, Two: I think that’s bs. Just because I don’t have kids doesn’t mean we don’t have things going on! We’re very close to my niece and family, have to travel, it’s bullshit. I just started taking PTO on holidays. Solved that problem really quickly!  (Lindsay)
  • We’re also always the ones expected to travel, and, as we move further away from family, it can be tough! I have a long commute three days a week and I don’t always feel like driving on weekends. (Lindsay)
  • The holiday’s are a total mix of emotions for me if I’m being honest. This time of year is literally my favorite time of year. I LOVE everything about Thanksgiving and Christmas. However, as someone who hoped and prayed for a family of her own, it’s like such a hard slap in the face. (Christine)
  • Seeing my brother and everyone else with their children, creating their own traditions is really emotional for me. I feel like we’re just in this weird place in our lives where we feel like we’re in the way sometimes. (Christine)
  • It can be very triggering for me. Seeing kids dressed up for Halloween. Seeing the kids see Santa. It’s that reminder in the back of your head that is like, I wonder what my child would look like. What they’d ask Santa. What they’d want to dress up as. (Christine)
  • When you don’t have children, people assume you’re schedules can be whatever THEY want it to be. (Christine)
  • CREATE NEW TRADITIONS (We can’t stress this enough!)
  • It’s ok to put yourself first during the Holidays. It’s necessary!

Holidays as an untraditional family can be really emotionally overwhelming, isolating and lonely. We both hope that talking about this situation allows you to help those around you who might fall into this category. Christine shared how simply inviting a family member or friend to a family event might make them feel less alone. If anything, they’ll know you thought of them and even if they say no, at least you tried.

Will you be experiencing the Holidays as an untraditional family this year? Do you have any tips? We’d love to share them!

Don’t Forget

November Book Club: Our book is Wild Game: My Mother, Her Lover, and Me by Adrienne Brodeur. Our episode will go live on November 27th. It will give you something to listen to while driving to your Thanksgiving dinner!  (affiliate link) 

Check out our Influenced the Podcast blog! 

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