H i Achokis, whenever the holiday season comes, I seem to have a lot of problems in my relationship. I have been married for three years now and I’m tired of always fighting with my wife over where to go for Christmas holidays.
My father expects all of us plus our spouses to be home in shags for Christmas so he can chinja mbuzi for us. My wife always complains about this and wonders why we can’t do this some other time, but she doesn’t seem to understand how important this is to me. How can I help her understand this and why does it have to be a problem every year?
The holiday season though supposed to be a time of joy and celebrations can also bring with it its own share of stress, especially for married couples. From planning, to travelling to spending and to being with our in-laws can cause friction between husband and wife.
Many of us grew up with certain traditions around Christmas and so often we come into the marriage with those same traditions. You have grown up with a tradition of always going back to shags for Christmas where your dad slaughters for the whole family. But what about your wife? What was her family tradition and how does she prefer spending the holidays?
Think of your wife
You may strongly feel as a man that you want to be with your family. It is, therefore, important for you to try and not push your agenda as the more you push it, the more it will be resisted. What you want is to have a buy in from your wife and so try to sweet-talk her to see how important this is for you.
But don’t just think of yourself. Find out from her why she’s complaining. It may just be that she fears to be overworked, isn’t comfortable being with your people or it’s just that she feels not heard. Have a discussion on how she would prefer to have the holiday and really listen to her.
It may be that she too wants to be with her family. If where her family is isn’t far from your shags then you can plan to hit two birds with one stone. If they are far apart, then that will be difficult and so you may need to find out what works best for both of you.
Create your traditions
Realise that you are also beginning to have your own traditions as a family. What do you want to be your family tradition for the holidays? Don’t allow pressure from your dad or siblings to put a strain in your marriage.
Remember one must leave his father and mother in order to be one with his wife and this is the true test of marriage. So, together with your wife, come up with a plan on how you want to spend these holidays in a way that is enjoyable to all.