Thursday, November 16, 2006

Thursay Thirteen Holiday Survival Guide

Thursday Thirteen Holiday Survival Guide.

1. Ok my good friend Pippa rose to the challenge I left on her blog for us both to make Survival guides out of our thursday thirteens. I have to admit, some of this will come from a very old post called "Ways to tell you are having a dysfunctional family holiday" It was one of my first posts (July 5 if youd like to refer because beta wont let me link it) on blogger.

1. Form alliances (Pippa refers to this and I agree it should be first and foremost). It is helpful if the alliances share your views on the more dysfunctional members of the family because then you can...

2. Create party games targetted around the DMs (dysfunctional members) like scavenger hunts based on different family behaviors. In my family, my allies and I base the whole hunt around who can catch my step-mother engaging in her usually horrific behaviors. Your list will include: Finding her bossing your kids around, having her cut you off in conversation, having her grab your plate off you before you are finished, having her invite people to an event in front of you and leave your family out, having her criticize your parenting, having her criticizing someone else's behavior to you, well you get the drift. We also do a drinking game version of you have to drink any time she lies, or says a snarky comment etc. Mixing up the games can provide good times for everyone!

3. You and your allies should develop game plans to minimize collateral damage. It is best if you do this beforehand. For example, if you are hosting, one person is assigned to block the DM from you at all times, another is assigned to protect the children, another is assigned for moral and liquor support.

4. Drink. A lot.

5. Plan a process time for after the DMs leave. And plan time for decompressing the next day with the allies.

6. Handling snarky comments and passive aggressive insults should be its own list. Some of my favorite techniques are laughing overly hard at the passive aggressive comment and then as you calm down just say "I honestly cant believe you actually said that out loud". My added to touch is to start laughing again and then shake my head and just get up and walk away. This is great especially if it wasnt meant to be funny. Sometimes, if its a really inappropriate comment, it is best just to let it hang in the air while you put a sympathetic look on your face and very pointedly avoid eye contact. What you are going for is "I am so sorry that you just made an ass of yourself. Im embarrassed for all of us." That awkward silence is pure gold.

7. Drink before the party.

8. MAKE SURE YOUR MEDS ARE REGULATED BEFORE THE SEASON. Sometimes you have to start early to insure good regulation. Ive been working on the Christmas Season Med regimen since July. I also finding doubling your meds that day to be helpful (watch this with the drinking) (If you have to sacrifice, give up the extra med. YOU NEED THAT ALCOHOL)

9. Passive aggressive gifts can be quite delightful. We do this with my step-mother because she is hideously mean to us all year long and completely ungracious no matter what we get her. Suggestions can be anything from off brand body wash with the words "dollar general" printed on it, to a ten dollar bill in an envelope. My sister in law got her a gift certificate to a plus size store because she is always commenting on our weights even though she is twice the size of any of us. I was horrified yet gleeful.

10. Teach your children to come tell if grandma is being a bully.

11. USE YOUR CALLER ID. If you dont have caller ID, screen screen screen. Screen before the holiday. Screen for a few days after the holiday. If you absolutely cannot avoid returning a call try your best to return it at a time that offers the best opportunity of getting their voicemail. NEVER TELL THEM TO CALL YOU BACK. Answer questions this way and end the conversation with "so we will see you at t-giving/christmas/hanakuh/kwanzaa".

12. If football is playing, become a sports fan and just sit in front of the tv pretending to watch the game. If your family is like mine, not much talking will be happening in front of that tv. You may need to pay attention to when people are cheering or making comments. Just nod and shake your head and join in on the cheering. Its a beautiful way to hide in plain sight.

13. Dont give the DMs all the power. Focus on the people you like to be with and plan on enjoying yourself. If you think positive, you can get through anything. As long as you keep drinking.

Blogs I like even if their lists aren’t up yet

Did You Ever Get The Feeling?
The Knut Hut
Using My Powers For Good
Ash In Wonderland

Get the Thursday Thirteen code her e!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


Pippajo said...

Oh, this is sublime, just sublime! I think this is my favorite of all the things you have written. I cannot tell you how much fun it has been to write a list in tandem! I really should have responded to you that I was going to do it, but it was a busy week and we were sick so I took the chance that you were actually going to do it too.


I am totally printing this up and handing it to my allies when they arrive the day before Thanksgiving. And we will toast you during our decompression time.


factor 10 said...

(If you have to sacrifice, give up the extra med. YOU NEED THAT ALCOHOL)

I love You, CRSE!! My family has always been fairly functional, so I need all the help I can get navigating the in-laws!

Ash said...

Come party with me! My MIL has been so nice lately, but I think she will start hating me again once I tell her I'm pregnant. You can be my deisgnated drinker!

gretty said...

Yes!Yes!Yes! My family wonders why I suddenly began enjoying the holidays a few years back. But CRSE knows the answer - Vodka!

luckybuzz said...

God. You are so utterly brilliant.

I love the party games and the handling snarky comments parts best. Maybe because I really can see you with the "empathetic" silent head shaking. Just awesome. :)

Sassy Lucy said...

Awesome idea, may I ammend and use for a future T13 of my own? Love you blog.