How do couples decide where to spend the holidays? I (she/her) got engaged to my fiancé “Fred” in May, and after going home to our respective families for Christmas the past four years, we’d like to spend December 25 together for the first time. My family is about a two-hour drive in-state, while Fred’s family is a six-hour drive a few states over, so we can’t split the day.
My own plans have always rotated since I have divorced parents, and we’ve always done Thanksgiving with each other since neither side is passionate about it (2018 was with my dad and stepmom, 2019 Fred’s family, 2020 stayed home for COVID, 2021 Fred’s again). Both households feel strongly about Christmas though, with special traditions for Christmas Eve, and we each have a sister who’s die-hard about family time for the festivities. We also have December birthdays that ought to be celebrated too while in town—Fred’s mom, my mom, and myself. We plan to promise whoever doesn’t get the day itself that they get Thanksgiving this year, and next year we’ll be with them, but Fred and I both feel terrible about disappointing whoever doesn’t get the first rotation. Is there anything we can do to make this easier on ourselves and our relatives?
—Holiday Travel Tension