New here? Register in under one minute   Already a member? Login224816 questions, 977270 answers  

  DearCupid.ORG relationship advice
  Got a relationship, dating, love or sex question? Ask for help!Search
 New Questions Answers . Most Discussed Viewed . Unanswered . Followups . Forums . Top agony aunts . About Us .  Articles  . Sitemap

My boyfriend does not celebrate X-Mas and I'm hurt by his apparent disregard to my my feelings

Tagged as: Big Questions, Breaking up, Family, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (19 November 2010) 26 Answers - (Newest, 21 November 2010)
A female United Kingdom age 26-29, anonymous writes:

Me and my boyfriend are on the verge of breaking up over this..

He doesn't celebrate xmas, he's not from the UK, but he knows how important it is for my family to be around each other at that time, and this year has been one hell of a difficult year for my

Family. Since the first year I brought him back for Christmas, my family have done whatever they could to make him

Comfortable and enjoy it. My dad even drove round one Xmas morning looking for an open shop to get him some bacon cos everyone else was having egg and he doesn't like it! Anyways this year he's decided he doesnt want to come as he "doesnt feel relaxed" WTF. Hes told me to go on my own not seeming to realize that him not being there is going to make my day abs crappy anyway as he's made me feel so unimportant, and I'll have to lie to

My family because theyll be so upset if they knew he just didn't want to come. I put this guy before myself all the time but i feel that this

Is just really selfish of him, I mean what's a couple of days to let me

Be happy and relaxe once in a year?

Iv tried explaining how I feel, iv tried reasoning , iv Tried persuasion, iv cried and iv screamed at him. I guess the worst thing is even if he does come now, the day will be ruined cos I know I'm forcing him.

Please help guys I'm really hurt by his apparent disregard for my feelings. :( my heart is literally aching ;(

View related questions: christmas

<-- Rate this Question

Reply to this Question


Share

Fancy yourself as an agony aunt? Add your answer to this question!

A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (21 November 2010):

CindyCares agony aunt Yes you can.

It works like this :

a Muslim WOMAN is not allowed to marry anything else than a Muslim man, but a Muslim man can marry either a Muslim woman or a woman from the "people of the book " : Christian and Jewish. This may not encouraged perhaps, but is not haram- forbidden.( While it's forbidden for a Muslim man to marry someone from other religions ,like Hindu ).

Conversion is not mandatory- even if of course there are many women that choose,or accept,or let themselves be persuaded to convert.

In my Northern Italy hometown Muslim immigrants are

12 percent of the population, so interfaith marriages are not uncommon. My (female ) boss married a Muslim Syrian guy and did not convert,for instance.

<-- Rate this answer

A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (21 November 2010):

chigirl agony aunt@ Cindy Cares, where have you experienced Muslim men or women are allowed to marry Christian or Jewish women? Here in Norway we have even seen politicians that converted to Islam to be able to marry the woman they love. And I have seen several Norwegian women with the hijab on, because they converted for love, to be able to marry the man they love.

I've never heard that you can marry a muslim and NOT convert.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (21 November 2010):

CindyCares agony aunt Precisely, OP : you accepted, or chose, to spend your wacation in his environment- you did not feel at ease and you did not like the experience, so you are not keen to repeat it anytime soon.

He accepted ,or chose, to join your Xmas celebrations- he did not feel at ease and did not like the experience, so he is not keen to repeat it anytime soon.

That's the problem with the misconception that people has to "sacrifice " for love. Love prospers in freedom- and in respect for each other's freedom. One should of course work something out, find a middle ground ,whenever

that's possible- and when it's not, each partner does his/her thing without that having necessarily to threaten the stability and balance of the relationship.

This is a common challenge for intercultural and interfaith relationships- it's only up to you deciding if you can ( and want ) to handle it - or if perhaps you have bitten more than you can chew.

@ Chigirl : just for general info . No, she would not have to convert to Islam and observe Ramadan. Muslim men

are allowed to marry Christian and Jewish women.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (20 November 2010):

chigirl agony auntI have to point out, just from what I have read of the situation, that she is NOT trying to make him change. He DID celebrate with her the first years of their relationship. It is not much to ask for that he keeps celebrating it with her. If he had told her upfront at the time they were dating that he doesn't celebrate Christmas, would she have ever gotten together with him? He lead her on to believe he celebrated Christmas, that was until the day he didn't want to bother anymore.

A few words about Christmas that all of you seem to not care about. Christmas for us non-dedicated religious people is about so much more than Christ. It's actually not about Christ at ALL! You may say it's all so commercialized, but do not forget that society has made Christmas into something that it originally was not, and it has developed into a whole new tradition that enables ALL people to celebrate it. Christmas today especially in the western-world has a few core values that are non-religious, such as family, love, generosity, thinking of others, doing good.

There are so many that commit suicide around Christmas, and so many old people that actually just die around Christmas, and it's not because they are religious. It is because for a person who does not have family, does not have money, struggle financially and can't buy gifts, don't have anywhere to go, they get depressed. And it's not because of religion at all. It is because this season carries with it so much more than whatever was the origin of the celebration. Try to tell someone going into deep depression that they shouldn't care about being sad over not celebrating, or having family or friends around... Because who needs that? Apparently, Christmas is only for the religious, and if you are religious you won't need no-body to celebrate with, because apparently it's not about that at all.. its about Christ. Oh spare me. Ideally yes, realistically: NO.

I guess for someone who doesn't understand Christmas, they won't know the impact this celebration has on people, religious or non-religious. For many people in the world this is a non-religious celebration. For many it is a forced celebration, and for many it is something to sink into deep depression over if they are UNABLE to celebrate, whether they originally wanted to or not. That is why this is causing so much pain and hurt, because she wants so spend Christmas with her closest ones.. now one of the closest ones reject that. If this was all about religion she could just go to a church and be just as happy.

And you know what: if you marry a muslim you have to become a muslim yourself. So yes, you'd have to attend Ramadan, and pray 5 times a day etc etc. So if this woman actually IS religious, which she doesn't claim to be, HE SHOULD celebrate with her, because that was a choice he MADE when he started dating her!

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, CaringGuy United Kingdom + , writes (20 November 2010):

You're obviously just two people, with different beliefs. And that's it. So, decide whether this is a deal breaker or not. You can't realistically expect someone who doesn't celebrate Christmas, and comes from a totally different background to suddenly change, and he can't expect you to disregard something you believe in so much. Either you're together, respecting that one likes Xmas and the other doesn't. Or you just end it and move on. But don't blame him for making you feel crappy, because he's of a different background. You've no right to say he's selfish when he's made it more than clear he wants nothing to do with it, AFTER having tried it before.

You seem to be trying to force this guy into changing. He won't. So accept him or dump him.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, ILoveCupid United Kingdom +, writes (20 November 2010):

ILoveCupid agony auntI am with CindyCares, soon567, and janniepeg.

We should respect individual differences and not force people to do what they don't feel comfortable doing, just to prove that they love and care about us. Imagine you were the one in their shoes.

The fact that he doesn't like to attend Xmas gathering with your family does not necessarily mean he doesn't love you or respect you. Besides religious reasons, he could be the quiet type of guy who doesn't enjoy socialising with a big crowd (I know they are your family, not just random people). Do you have a good time together when you are alone, just the two of you?

I would encourage you to talk to him to find out the real causes and be honest with your family about it, so that they don't have false expectations which may add pressure on you to bring him home for Xmas.

Love is about give and take. But if not celebrating Xmas with you and your family is a dealbreaker, you may have to find someone else who does.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, anonymous, writes (20 November 2010):

Hi guys, thanks all the replies. The problem is not him not wanting to celebrate christmas, the problem is him not wanting to make me happy, by coming to stay with my family for a couple of days. I work hard all year long, and its gonna be the first chance iv had to relax. We didnt go on holiday, he doesnt work but wanted to go see his family (first time

For me) I was working 60 hours a week so we could go see them in a part of the world most people wouldn't consider going. I was in a place that was so hot I was Ill, the only language I knew was what I had taught myself, with non of the facilities we have here, the toilets were holes in the ground! Was I comfortable? No. But I socialised with his family as best I could and even was I was really Ill for most of the 2 weeks, I kept smiling. He's always complaining English people are cold and racist, but my family have done their upmost best to make him comfortable he just cold shoulders them. Seems like he's being a little hypocritical there! I

Just feel like I'm not worth anything to him, and there's no give and take in our relationship just his take take take. I'm sick of making excuses to my family everytime I go see them, he's sick, he's at his friends.... I just don't feel I can do that at christmas, but they'll be so dissapionted if I tell them the truth, he doesn't want to come, he's not relaxed, he thinks he's better than us and our little get together :(

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (20 November 2010):

CindyCares agony aunt @Josh B667.

I have to disagree with you. To me, if you are sitting down with people to eat special foods and drink special drinks and exchange gifts on the birtday of a God that is not your God, this IS celebrating. So,if you don't want to celebrate,- you 'll have to avoid.

I agree with you that for some people is not a big deal.

To me, honestly, as long as I like the company and I can stuff my face for free- any ceremony and any religion goes :)

But people is not OBLIGED to feel this way.

I think the OP's case is a classic case of " if you really loved me, you'd do X or Y "- but ,as we all know, this is a very slippery slope, because the only sensible answer to that is " And if YOU really loved me,you would not want to force me doing X or Y "...

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, Jmtmj Australia +, writes (20 November 2010):

Jmtmj agony aunt"Iv tried explaining how I feel, iv tried reasoning , iv Tried persuasion, iv cried and iv screamed at him. I guess the worst thing is even if he does come now, the day will be ruined cos I know I'm forcing him.

Please help guys I'm really hurt by his apparent disregard for my feelings. :( my heart is literally aching ;("

Do see the irony here? Who is disregarding who's feelings in this equation hmmm? He went last year, he didn't feel comfortable at all. You're disregarding his feelings just as much.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, JoshB667 Australia +, writes (20 November 2010):

There is a difference between 'not celebrating Christmas' and ; actively going out of your way to avoid it / changing your mood about it / making others feel uncomfortable. He clearly has a "problem" with it. This is something you are going to have to talk to him about.

My point being, I doubt you will ever get him to 'celebrate' it, but have a good talk to him about why he is so against it and make him realize that if he loves you he will let it slide and deal with it.

As a side note for an example, I am white, my g/f is Chinese - she and her family do not celebrate xmas but I (we) could not care less, and I love engaging with her beliefs.

Life is too short and precious to let these kind of squabbles get in the way, especially between two people who are together. The quicker you deal with this the better.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (20 November 2010):

CindyCares agony aunt Sorry, I had not seen your update. Then he IS Muslim. Just not observant.

I am not surprised at all he does not want to celebrate Xmas. He has been nice to make you happy once, last year, but obviously it's not his thing and he does not want to make it HIS tradition. I also think he would get a lot of grief from HIS friends and most of all family if he'd start observing your traditions.

Haven't you thought about that ? Your family would be upset if he does not "do " Xmas. His family would be upset if he does.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (20 November 2010):

CindyCares agony aunt Respect is a two way street. And it's ok for you exposing him to your traditions , or gently inviting to know them better- but not forcing him to embrace them with tears and yells and emotional blackmails.

What's his reason for not "doing " Christmas ? Is he from another religion ? Is he an atheist ?That seems a valid reason to me.

How would you like to be pressured to fast for the month of Ramadan ??? ( Just an example , if he is so fond of bacon I don't think he is Muslim ).

Let's not forget that Xmas is not only, and it did not start, like " a day for families to be together, but also Jesus Christ's birthday celebration.

How would you feel being obliged changing your plans to be

among strangers for celebrating Gauthama Shakyamuni (Buddha )'s birthday ??

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, largentsgirl89 United States +, writes (20 November 2010):

largentsgirl89 agony auntTwo very different cultures.

I think that if he loves you like he says he does then he should go with you to your families' place. I know that he doesn't like Christmas and doesn't share the customs, but who can't respect a holiday that brings families together?

He is apart of your family is he not? You should express to him how important this is to you and how much it would mean to you that he be there cause you don't want to spend this holiday without him.

If he can't understand that or respect your customs and traditions (and you vice versa) then maybe it is time to find someone new. Someone who will embrace cultural diversity with an open mind. Most boyfriends/girlfriends/ and even husbands/wives don't like their significant other's family. But they deal with it because they love their significant other and want them to be happy.

I hope this helps. Good Luck. Let me know how everything works out.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, ChaseTerrier United States +, writes (20 November 2010):

Another option is that there is another reason that he does not want to go and him saying he "doesnt feel relaxed" is a nice way of telling you he does not want to go since the real reason may hurt your feelings even worse.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, Denise32 United States +, writes (20 November 2010):

Denise32 agony auntYopu say you're on the verge of breaking up with this man over his refusal to spend Christmas with you?

Well, then, let him get on with it, and be by himself, and YOU break up with HIM.

From what you tell us its very clear that you and he are just not compatible.......different cultures, and he's showing disrespect to you and your family.

So, as I said, let him get on with it and you enjoy spending time with the parents and other family. He's so not worth it.......

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, soon567 United States +, writes (20 November 2010):

I understand how you feel and it’s a little one-sided, but understands your plight. When I was stationed in Hawaii (Schofield Barracks) I had a friend and I guess he was religious yet I thought otherwise. He and his girl invited me over for a barbeque which I declined to go, after all the persuasion I finally gave into going. It was ok but I had better things to do. When it came down to dinner is when it all went to shit. I don’t have a religion, yet I don’t play with other people’s religion.

It’s well and good that you have a tradition that your family participates and they go all out to put on a (show) as your guy may see it. This isn’t him, as I tried not to rebuke others religion I always asks that they don’t try to convert me. Respect me in my ways (how odd you think it is) and I try to respect yours.

I think he needs to go with you, but I think he’ll feel awkward and out of place. He may be so against it you may need to let your family know that he doesn’t do Xmas at all. I don’t do it either.

“Is just really selfish of him” It’s actually selfish of you to make him go, but to please you and keep peace I probably would go. You can have a relationship of different faith and customs but each have to give and take.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, baddogbj China +, writes (20 November 2010):

baddogbj agony auntHe is being selfish. It's a huge red flag. You should think about getting out sooner rather than later.

I've been in a cross cultural marriage for 14 years and whatever you may think you have to suck it up and enjoy each other's traditions or pretend to. Marriage is about more than 2 people it really does involve 2 families and if he can't even pretend to be nice to yours for a few days a year then his feelings for you don't run very deep.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, janniepeg Canada + , writes (20 November 2010):

janniepeg agony auntWeird that he's Muslim, he eats bacon but wouldn't eat eggs.

If my boyfriend was Jewish I'd probably not feel the importance of celebrating Hannukah. I would feel so out of place. I was used to Christmas trees, wreaths, Santa Claus. Anything besides that would just be weird.

If he invites you to a big festival after ramadan you would feel out of place too, wouldn't you?

I have also known Indian guys who wouldn't eat anything besides curry and samosas, Italian guys who wouldn't eat anything besides pasta. This has nothing to do with disregarding your feelings. They are used to what they grow up with and it's hard to adapt to another culture. England and North America are much more acceptable towards other cultures. It's like a melting pot. Imagine you growing up in a country that's 99% Islam. I know in some Muslim families women cook the food and then hide in the kitchen, letting the men do the socializing. He may not be familiar with your way of doing things. He may think that if two cultures have to do too much to adjust to differences, it's better off just leaving each other alone.

If he has no problems with hanging out with your family in a more casual setting, then I think it is the big hype of Christmas that he's uncomfortable with.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A male reader, LazyGuy Netherlands +, writes (20 November 2010):

LazyGuy agony auntIn a relationship you sometimes got to do things you don't like. Visiting family is one of them. You do them because your partner wants to and you want to please your partner.

He doesn't.

Doesn't that tell you something?

And doesn't like eggs, geez god. Stop robbing the cradle, it is illegal to date 6 year old boys. THINK about it, you are an adult, he is an adult. Do you want someday to have a kid and have 2 people at the dinner table throwing a tantrum over your cooking?

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, Andulikeittoo United States +, writes (20 November 2010):

Andulikeittoo agony auntStop trying to force people to do what they don't want. If he's not comfortable LET HIM BE, I've been on his situation and it sucks!!! If you don't like it, get a new BF...

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, YouWish United States + , writes (20 November 2010):

YouWish agony auntSo he's gone with you to your family's Christmas gatherings in the past, but this time, he's refusing because he "doesn't feel comfortable".

Sounds like he's looking to break up with you, but he's wanting you do be the one to do it. You can't force him to do anything, but the problem is, this is the relationship right here in a nutshell. You have been ignoring the incompatibility in yourselves for so long, and now the resentment level in you has become intolerable.

Your family sounds really great. Leave this guy and find someone more worthy of you and your family, and one who is more religously and culturally compatible to you.

Do not think of the present. Think of your future that is slipping out of your grasp. You've had to pick the bones out of this relationship for far too long. No more making excuses for him. No man worth his salt will ever require you to lie. Tell your family when you show up at Christmas that he isn't with you because you're no longer a couple. I'm guessing there will be a collective sigh of relief, because with a close family, they tend to see the issues before you do.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (20 November 2010):

chigirl agony auntPS. my ex wasn't even religious one bit, so it had nothing to do with celebrating going against some personal beliefs. He just didn't care either way, had celebrated it plenty before, but decided he didn't want to bother with it any more. Fair deal, he's right to choose what he wants to celebrate or not, but we also have a right to choose if thats a man we want to spend our lives with or not. And to believe I was actually naive enough back then to be willing to sacrifice Christmas for him! He also never wanted children, which I sacrificed that idea as well.

Don't be as gullible as me and think that you love each other and that he is worth sacrificing things for. It's not. It never is. Don't ever sacrifice the things you truly want for any man.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (20 November 2010):

chigirl agony auntSorry that I can't help you. This could be the dealbreaker hun. He wont celebrate Christmas with you now, he wont celebrate it next year either Im afraid. It is selfish of him. You have told him how important it is to you, and he should go and respect that. Him not celebrating it is NO excuse for not keeping you company. Thousands of people every year, every day, attend religious gatherings or other festivities not of their culture, just imagine Chinese new years, how many tourists don't go to experience that, or weddings, tons of people go to weddings without being religious. Even non-religious people get married! This is his poor excuse for staying at home and play video-games, and I can not believe the disrespect.

You do not force him to church with you right? You only want him to be there with you? He wont have to do anything religious right? He could be there purely for your company, and Christmas for most people is not so much about religion as it is about being with the people you love the most.

I know completely how you feel, I was actually thinking about that very thing here the other day. I never want to date a man who don't celebrate Christmas. Because I did too, once upon a time. My ex-fiancé, he didn't celebrate Christmas either. And didn't want to join me for Christmas celebration... I had to beg him to come along. It was horrible, all-together a horrible experience. I do still remember how that felt, and his nonchalant look of not understanding what this big whoop is about. Ignorant.

So I am sorry for you. My guy ended up finally trotting along, but that Christmas I did a whole lot of acting and pretending. I couldn't even tell my mother he didn't want to come, everyone was expecting it, and it was mortifying to have to be the one to say he's not coming.

I suggest you accept that he wont come, and ask him to be the one to tell your parents. He is the one who wont come, HE can be the one to tell people why. Then think long and hard if this is how you want every Christmas to be from now on. You and your family went above every expectation trying to make him comfortable, and he has shown zero gratitude. Selfish.

So, my advice: don't bother with him now. Let him be on his own, he is free to do whatever he pleases, and if spending time with you and your family over the holidays makes him this uncomfortable, well then you know what kind of future you are getting with him. But for now, celebrate, do whatever YOU want to with your family, go through with all your plans, but don't include him in it. If he suddenly changes his mind last minute (which my ex did) tell him it's too late, there's not been made preparations for him. Serves him right. Then ENJOY the holidays! Do NOT let him determine how your holiday celebration with your family is going to be! Do not call him, or text him, just pretend he doesn't exist so you can celebrate happily with people who actually gives a damn.

Sorry for my rant. I just had a bit of personal rage boiling up to the surface again. In the future don't date men who wont celebrate Christmas. I've put that on my personal list of qualities in a man. I know you will have a lovely Christmas despite him, so just ignore his childishness and enjoy yourself!

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, anonymous, writes (20 November 2010):

He's not from the UK, he is from a Muslim country, but he's not religious at all. Also he understands Xmas in my family is about family, and he has just decided this year he doesnt want to be part of it.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, celtic_tiger United Kingdom + , writes (20 November 2010):

celtic_tiger agony auntFirst of all, why doesnt he celebrate christmas? Is it religious?

If you could give us a bit more info on WHY he doesnt like/doesnt celebrate it might help us.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

A female reader, janniepeg Canada + , writes (19 November 2010):

janniepeg agony auntI myself didn't grow up liking Christmas. We celebrated with family members but it wasn't like we could talk about anything. There was laughter, but it was like people HAD to come, HAD to eat the food. The younger ones play video games while the adults made conversation and wondering when they are finally leaving. The older I grew the more pointless, commercial it had become. Some people think it has nothing to do with Jesus. Some people think it's a made up story. To your family it might seem like it's impolite for him to come, but just treat him as if he's a Jew or Muslim, and this has nothing to do with not loving you, or giving you respect. If you continue to force this, then you are the one disregarding his feelings.

<-- Rate this answer

...............................   

Add your answer to the question "My boyfriend does not celebrate X-Mas and I'm hurt by his apparent disregard to my my feelings"

Already have an account? Login first
Don't have an account? Register in under one minute and get your own agony aunt column - recommended!

All Content Copyright (C) DearCupid.ORG 2004-2008 - we actively monitor for copyright theft

0.078125!