Family – grrrrrr

November 18, 2010

in Understanding Her

A week from today is Thanksgiving in the States, followed by Christmas and New Year’s around the globe. For many that means a lot of travel, a lot of family, and usually a lot of extra work for someone.

Please realise that “the holidays” are almost universally harder on women than on men. This is especially true for a woman with a couple of younger kids. Depression in women hits highs over the next two months, as do stress and exhaustion.

Yes, help all you can to take some of the load off your bride, and be ready to say no to various invitations to save her sanity, but in the end, you probably can’t even it out. Just realise she will be more over worked and more tired than you will, and cut her a lot of slack. Also, be quick to defender her, especially with your family.

2 comments
Gary
Gary

I really appreciate this post. My wife has a much more complicated family situation than I do. So one of my key jobs is to run appropriate interference. It's a delicate balance of keeping her schedule and engagements realistic and stepping in to say no. Conversely I also try to help her pick great spots to engage, get the family holiday credits, and still keep her sanity. I just keep checking in, "Honey let me know if you need me to step in and clear some of this out." For all kinds of reasons we need to hold our wives close during the holidays not the least of which is to help her enjoy the time and protect her from the madness as best we can.

Living Room Furniture
Living Room Furniture

I would agree that the holiday season is much harder on women than men. I think this is mainly because women and men generally have different expectations for the holidays. Women, more so than men, have idealistic or impractical holiday expectations that very often results in stress. Many blame the commercialization of the season, while I think it has more to do more with traditional gender roles that become magnified during the holidays as society puts more pressure on women to “do it all”. Thus, enchanted by the romanticized notion of the season, women more often than men, succumb to the stress and demands of children, family members and friends. At a certain level or point, a person has to figure out what they really want out of the holiday season, instead of solely focusing on what others want or what society dictates.

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