Inviting the N to Thankgiving.. ugh

Touchy subject. We're married/separated. We've always had Thanksgiving dinner as a family, at my parents' home. He has no family (I disowned my in-laws 7yrs ago as they continued to enable his behavior when he would take off, and they in turn disowned him when he came back to me, etc) and no friends that I know of that he would be spending the holiday with. The empath in me feels horrible about leaving him out in the cold on the holidays.

To invite or not to invite? I don't mind him coming as he likes to put on his nice-person show around my parents so it would be pleasant, and nice for the kids, but my common sense says NC/MC is NC/MC and that I should rather be enforcing that. That he shouldn't get the privilege of being thought of at family holidays just as he didn't think of anyone else (including his children) during the other times of the year... I am usually a very sympathetic person and while I don't want to be vindictive, I do want him to suffer the consequences of his actions sometimes.

lillymarch's picture

I'm in a similar situation as you are, 5 kids and such. I've decided to not have thanksgiving at my house just in case the N ex husband tries to 'show up'. I'm going to make plans and not think of him. I'm going to either go to my moms or we'll go out. My concern is that he'll make plans with his family and then last min ask to take the kids. I'm going to have to say no. He never plans more than a day ahead so I'm sure he hasn't even thought about Nov 24th. I let you know how my plans go. Please know that I've had similar feelings. I thought to call him a few days ago so that we could figure the whole thing out. I thought how sad it's going to be for him, and on and on. But he is such a BIG FAT JERK! Really! He has hurt me so badly! Left me to do EVERYTHING! I'm struggling on a daily basis just to find the time to brush my teeth. I weigh things like exercise or have a clean house? I can't put the clean clothes away fast enough. I'm getting rid of all the animals because my children and I do all the work. I'm up until midnight and dragging my butt out of bed by 5:30. He took my 'happy together family' dream away. And I'm pissed. I know I picked him, ignored the red flags, and foolishly believed his BS. But I never lied. And I've worked forever trying to make him happy. He will NEVER be happy. I didn't mean to hijack your post. Stop thinking about him. At all. Change those thought instantly back onto you. Just a thought. Love, Lilly
5kdznme's picture

Thank you for this. Could have wrote it myself. This boat feels a little less empty this morning. ((
5kdznme's picture

Thank you all for putting things into clear perspective. My inner voice understands you are all so very right. I appreciate the feedback and clarity.
uk lady's picture

Hell of a name to type. LOL I personally would not invite him as not being involved in "your" family life is a consequence of his past actions. He has to take responsibility for those actions. I have never stopped my son from being where he wanted to be during the holidays once he reached his teens (we obviously don't celebrate Thanksgiving in the UK) but whilst he was young he always saw his father first thing Chrimas Day morning, then the rest of the day with my family and then spent all Boxing Day with his paternal grandmother/father and exH's family. Children need stability and routine which, I am sure you know. So concentrate on you and them and let the N take care of himself. He is not your responsibilty. Don't beat yourself up by thinking that you are unsympathetic - being sympathetic is what got us where we all are now. Again, only my opinion. You know what is best for you and your's. Dee x
5kdznme's picture

Voice says exactly that... thanks. 5kdznme = 5 kids 'n me :)
uk lady's picture

Well with 5 kids to look after and especially during the holidays, you don't need another adult child to look after do you? I often used to say to my exH that I thought I had only one child, not 2. You deserve to enjoy the holidays not be worrying about whether he is ok. You've spent enough years doing that. Dee x
5kdznme's picture

I always said he was my oldest child... LOL. This year he's getting coal in his stocking.
Hunter's picture

Love it..
Hermes's picture

Have to agree with Hunter on this one. This is not about being kind-hearted, which you evidently are. You need the minimum of aggravation from this individual, so just keep up the NC, at arm's length. Don't fret, he'll find company for the holidays, if he wants to. That's his problem. As for him "suffering the consequences of his actions", well, you are on a losing wicket there, I am afraid. Since the N considers his actions are all quite normal, and has no insight, then he would be quite puzzled by the notion of suffering consequences. I know, a hard concept to grasp, but there it is. Good luck with everything Hermes
Deidre40's picture

if you were divorced....what would you do? therein lies your answer. don't let semantics cloud your judgement. when people divorce...they do separate things...even on holidays. his life sounds sad. but, he created it. you are not pushing him out into the cold...he brought himself there, on his own.
Hunter's picture

Invite or not to invite.. To be a victim or not a victim .. What do you want from this relationship?? NC is what we recommend .. Why are you asking us this question when the answer is clear.. If you want to continue in an abusive relationship have at it sharing a Holiday with a man you want to get away from.. HUH?? Being in contact is continuing ..these are personal choices.. We are here for support struggling with NC leaving an abusive relationship .. Splitting bread with an abuser .. I can't help you.. Hunter
5kdznme's picture

"We are here for support struggling with NC leaving an abusive relationship .." Where do I find the forum that deals with support for those fresh off the griddle and in the confusion stage where full no contact is not possible? Unfortunately, I am not the only one in this family. If it were just me I could walk away and not question that decision. My issue is finding a healthy balance for my children. What that is, I don't know yet. Unfortunately, there will never, ever be a time when we're not in contact. Our youngest just turned 1 yesterday. I have at least 17 more years of this. Thinking of the kids' emotional needs will always far surpass his or my own. Thanks for the input. I do understand your point though.
Hunter's picture

I realize if you have children communication is necessary.., How you deal with him is the issue.. Boundaries .. You set rules and he needs to follow them. I guess add him on as to be treated ad one of the kids. If you don't set rules then you are allowing a head spin.. If you say you will put your kids first.. Again show your kids what healthy people do. Unfortunately for you ,you are going to have to take on the role of mommy and daddy.. These people are not capable of responsibility .., Having a Thankgiving with PD individual for the children still makes no sense., It would be a ticking timebomb .. Is going to behave, rage, walk out.. Anything is possible., their goal is to destroy.. I can't imagine it a "Happy" Thanksgiving at all... This childless moderator does now what she is talking about Hunter If he is such a great dad then let him be so on his time..
5kdznme's picture

So true. How many holidays have we had that he's ruined by his tantrums ... gah. He doesn't at my parents' home but at our home, oh yeah, forgot about those. (Slaps forehead.)
Done sourcing's picture

You said you have at least 17 more years of this. That is true as long as you make the same decisions and think you have to cater to the disorder. No doubt moving on requires tough decisions, separating the kids from both mommy and daddy together in the same room with the bird, is sad. But it is also reality. From a childs eyes it actually makes more sense to not be together on the holidays, because showing union represents a lie, a big fat lie. And kids don't need to be confused anymore because separation and divorce is confusing enough for them already. We don't have to bend over for anyone. The "this" is letting the abuser energy sucker take take take. We have to admit that we at some point invite this taker into our lives. When all of the signs point to abusive dead end relationship and we still try to engage we have become the abuser. We are choosing to abuse ourselves. I know, because I have done it and still do sometimes. It sucks to be so weak and afraid to move on and close the door completely. These narcs are so brilliant at painting the pretty facade that we can actually believe it when we say to ourselves "it could be a pleasant holiday because the narc will "ACT" normal and nice and everybody will be fine. This acceptance on our part is the crucial issue that those of us with families shared with a narc have to face. The question is what do I want for myself, now and in the future, and what am I willing to do to get that. I must know that the narc will never change, but only cast temporary shadows of normalcy and emotional maturity. Under that mask lurks the same empty spiritual vacuum that was always there, hiding and manipulating. The kindest act is to really let these narcs go. That is the best for them. If there ever is to be any recovery for them it will be partially fueled by our complete letting go of them and their family ties. To engage and share intimate or personal information with them is what it always was...a supply of fuel for them to use at their will. The only way to stop a taker is to stop giving. As long as we stay in that shadow, the light that is within us will be obscured to others and ourselves. It is in us always, but sometimes unrecognized due to the confusion and chaos brought about by associating with an emotional vampire. Accepting the familiar instead of experiencing the disquiet and discomfort of the new is understandable in our current conditions. We have been around the cyclical abuse for so long we think we can handle it, and we can. But at what price? I think the price is giving up on ourselves and our potential as human/spiritual beings to grow and prosper as giving loving caring souls. God didn't put us here to be alone, we were put here to share and nourish. To be in relationship with a real narc is to be truly alone, because even we have sold ourselves out. We can learn from sharks, but a steady diet, and inviting them to tea is not wise, or expected by our creator. Who else would you ask into your life, even for a moment, that would kick you and then kiss you and then kick you and then kiss you? This will be my second Thanksgiving without the sharing of the feast with the exwn. Last year was fine, different but fine. This year will be what it is, different and fine. Fantasy feasting with the disordered one should be called Thankstaking. Happy Thankstaking Day! I am not a perfect example of no contact. I have wavered many times, including very recently. I get triggered and I sometimes react....it always opens the wounds...it always hurts...it always activates my magical thinking---the what if's...it always leads me back to where it started...I am tying to make a normal person out of a disordered person...and I miss my masked woman...the idealized version that I fell in love with. The special connection...fantasy. The passion, the drama, even the not really knowing if it was real or would last was addicting...I bought in and drank the Kool-aid. Acid reflux is a bitch, and there isn't enough magical thinking to keep that elixir down, believe me! Thanks for listening to my ramblings, I need to get it out and see it for the truth it represents! ds
Layla's picture

Happy Thankstaking Day! LMAO!! Freaking BRILLIANT! hahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!! : )) love~ Layla
Hunter's picture

DS darn .. You always say it better.. Hunter
GeorgiaGirl's picture

For those of us with kids but it sounds like one is in the works. I have a 15, 12, 10 & 2 year old so I'm "looking forward" to at least 17 more years of this. It's called Low Contact (LC) and it means minimizing contact on every front to only about the kids and usually only by email or text. I prefer email except in emergencies. I have 2 N's (oldest 3 kids with exN#1 and 2 yr old with stbxN) and LC works wonders with both of them. If you want to talk kiddos, I'm always available by PM. I'm 7 months out from stbxN (and 5 years from exN#1 - didn't learn my lesson) so I've been there, done that.
Done sourcing's picture

lol, low contact. I like it. More like contact with a low life. Am I the only one to remember the old TV show Mr.Ed? A narc is a narc, of course, of course- and no one can talk to a narc, of course- unless, of course, that talking narc- is the famous Mr. ED Wilbur aka ds
5kdznme's picture

Will def keep in touch and you'll probably be hearing from me. Learning about Nism, I realized my previous longterm bf (before marriage) was also N. He was far worse than my current husband and also father to my DS#1. Twice bitten. Just didn't realize it til now. Will keep in touch.
GeorgiaGirl's picture

Hell no! I understand where you are coming from (I have 4 kids, 2 N's & going through a divorce myself) but you all will have to face the music and better to do it now. You are NC with this guy for a reason, he is an abuser and I suspect that he will use this as a way to make you all miserable either before, during, after or all 3. He chose his path now you have to be strong and continue to follow yours. He can have his own dinner with the children if he so chooses but why ruin your holiday?
5kdznme's picture

He won't have his own dinner with the kids. He does nothing with them, makes no plans, just pretty much waits around for me to do it all and then shows up for a bit and then leaves after. He never thinks of them either, just like he never thought of me. It's the thing that makes me hate him the most. I feel badly for the kids. They want to see him and holidays are the one and only time they could ever count on for us to be a normal family - the only time there was a sense of togetherness. They have no other family here except my parents and me. Holidays are lonely for us. Guess I'm beating around the bush to make it one less. That's the way it's going to have to be then. Just needed a little push that it's ok to pass back the evil. Thanks.
Hunter's picture

What he does to his kids is his problem.. The kids will grow one day and figure it out.. All you can do is be you and a good partent and role model.. Personally cow towing to him is a poor example on your part.. You love your kids.. How he chooses to parent or not parent is his problem.. Hunter
5kdznme's picture

Agreed.
GeorgiaGirl's picture

I know how hard it is to watch your kids be disappointed over and over by the N. I know yours won't do anything for Thanksgiving because both of the N's in my life are exactly the same way. They won't put forth the effort because there is nothing in it for them. Make this holiday special for you and your kids. What you are going through right now is HARD. They are confused, you are in pain, life isn't fair - so take this time to just be good to you and them. Check out your area and see what kinds of activities are going on! I'll bet there is a ton of stuff (and probably some very inexpensive or free stuff too) that you and the kids could spend your time doing. Macy's Day parade on tv, window shopping, Santa at the local mall, going for a nature walk, going to a movie, etc. You will be the guiding light for your children from this point on...you need to do what's best for them. Go make some memories and show them how your NEW LIFE is going to be!
5kdznme's picture

It is what it is. Yes, that's exactly what's in order. New memories.
Hermes's picture

I can only applaud Georgia's great post. I hope you make great new memories and have a peaceful and beautiful new life. Hermes
Swan's picture

Think about the message that would be sending your children. Do you want your children to grow up and get involved in disordered dysfunctional relationships or do you want them to have strong boundaries to assist in their self esteem and ONLY be with healthy people?