Family: recent publications

A Gentle Reminder to Anyone Who’s Struggling This Holiday Season

“It’s okay to want to be alone. It’s okay to take time for yourself.” ~Kate Allan

It’s the holiday season, the most wonderful time of the year, they say, but it’s not for all of us. For those of us coping with the loss of a loved one, , loneliness, financial difficulties, or health struggles, the holidays can be one of the hardest times of the year.

For some of us the holidays can feel as if we have been cast out in the cold. As if we are forced to look through a window of a happy, loving family.

Many of us are filled with feelings of longing for things that can never be, such as more time with a loved one we have lost or a supportive family. We find ourselves swept into memories of holidays past or lost in fantasies about what the holidays would be like if we had a different life.

We find ourselves feeling pressured to hide our problems, bake a dozen cookies, put on a happy smile and an ugly Christmas sweater, and attend that office holiday party. There, we smile and engage in exhausting small talk, and do our best to avoid the subject of what we are doing for the holidays.

These events can leave us feeling totally depleted. We buy obligatory gifts for our friends or coworkers, and we spend hours trying to figure out what they might like. After the gift is purchased, we second guess ourselves and worry that we missed the mark.

Some of us might host parties and obsess over making our tree look absolutely perfect in a desperate effort to and give people the impression that everything is fine.

Society has filled our heads with unrealistic notions about perfect gifts, immaculate homes decorated with lavish matching decorations, endless resources to spend, and happy times spent with family. Some of us find ourselves

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