Holiday Haters: Handling Meanness During the Madness
I’ll admit, I feel like a Scrooge during the holidays. I’ve even explained in my post Confessions of a Scrooge Mom. It’s not that I’m not festive, besides that I hate the majority of Christmas music. I’m just not a fan of people, especially at the holidays.
People lose their minds during the busy holiday season, and my anxiety is already at its peak. I don’t want to argue or brawl with negative people during the madness. Meanness during this time of year makes me want to say fa la la f**k the holidays.
This post isn’t just a tirade about angry aunts or what have you. It’s the way I handle people when they aren’t full of seasonal cheer. Just because someone isn’t happy, doesn’t mean they need to sink the entire festive ship!
Smile at Passive Aggressive Polly
I know a ton of people, family members included, who are super passive aggressive. They say things that blindside you, and you’re not sure if you were insulted or complimented because that have that “bless your heart” tone. I usually smile and dish it back, but this year, I’m going to smile and tell them how well I’m doing and walk away.
I’ve had a conversation at a Christmas party where a cousin asked if my Bachelor’s in English was worth getting since I’m a SAHM. I asked in return if her husband’s GED that he got in prison helped him get decent job prospects. I can be as catty as the best of them, but what’s the point?
It feels amazing to give it back to them 10 folds over, but this year, I’m going to smile and drop a positive update on my life. What better way to piss passive aggressive Polly off than to ignore her dig with a smile.
Don’t Feed the Drama Llamas
I’ve been trapped by nosey people trying to suck up any information they can to swirl around in their drama gauntlet. Even if I don’t say negative comments, these llamas can spit things out backwards and make you look bad.
Family gatherings and holiday parties are the main places I get cornered for situations like this. I hate when someone is saying something negative about a friend, colleague, or family member and they expect you to dish out too. I usually just comment that everyone is different, but even those words have been turned against me.
Avoiding drama llamas isn’t always easy. My new strategy is to just ask them how they are once they start talking bad or stirring the pot.
I’ve done this recently where a friend from my husband’s job came for dinner. He was talking about all the people he didn’t like. When he stopped talking, I asked, “so who do you like?” What is something positive in your life.” To be honest, I may have dialed up his anger, but I can’t take the drama llama spit.
Juggling Judgment from Janice
I will start by saying, before I had kids, I would judge others. I was pretty closed minded. I thought my way was best. Let me just say, I was a complete bonehead. Having kids humbled me and forced me to open my eyes. I’ve apologized to everyone who I hurt, but now, I know how to deal with these types of people from the inside.
The moment someone starts judging others and putting another person’s choices down, I praise whoever they are bashing.
I had a sister-in-law who was hating on my other sister-in-law, I know stay with me here. The sister who was being attacked was in the process of changing her and my brother’s lifestyle. They switched to clean eating and being more active. This other sister just thought it was absurd and was name calling and mom shaming. I ended the conversation by saying, “well, I think she looks gorgeous and am so proud she found a way to make herself happy.”
The mean sister had self esteem issues and couldn’t stand that my other sister was learning to be happy and comfortable in her body. It was a messy situation, but the best way to end negativity is to slather it with positivity.
Turn the Cheek on Twitter Trolls
This isn’t just for Twitter. All social media has its trolls and mean people. I actually had some new experiences with people making negative statements on social media. I was mortified. It’s not like I posted anything controversial or anything. People are just highly opinionated and don’t care who they offend.
I used to be able to stand up to bullies quite well. When I started my blog, I was worried people wouldn’t read it. I didn’t worry about much else in terms of their opinions. If they didn’t like it, at least they read it and gave it a shot. I mean I don’t want people saying negative comments, but that’s a possibility when you put yourself out there.
I’ve seen many of the bloggers I adore dealing with trolls and backhanded comments or tasteless jokes that can easily hurt someone’s feelings. That’s what happens on the internet and it’s a frustrating reality. Well, some trolls will emerge, and ignoring their snide comments will always be my favorite route.
So here I am, writing this post, and it dawned on me. Who the hell cares what some angry Anna or bitter Betty thinks!? I write for me, first and foremost. Readers are great, but I started this journey for me. I have readers who genuinely talk and engage. I have some pretty great friends online and offline who support me.
Although, thank you random people for inspiring this post! Not everyone can love what you write, and that’s okay. The point is, you can’t please everyone.
The Take Away
I could probably think of a bunch of phrases like Don’t Rally with Regina George or Just Back Away from Jealous Julie. The point is, there will always be negative people, and those people seem to pop up with a vengeance around the holidays. I try to be social and catch up with everyone, but you can’t hang out with dragons when you’re trying to be a unicorn.
Letting others steal your shine during the most festive time of year can happen to anyone, but it doesn’t have to. Try to stay positive. Try to enjoy this time of year and be thankful instead of thankless. Well now that I’ve exhausted every cliche that I can think of, have a wonderful holiday! I’ll be rooting for all of you.