These Are The Worst Holiday Stories Ever

January 2, 2023 | Derek Choi

These Are The Worst Holiday Stories Ever

The holiday season can be super fun…or a massive headache. Family drama, annoying visitors, and scheduling conflicts are a hassle for many of us. Whether it be Christmas, Thanksgiving, or even just a birthday, these Redditors share why they definitely WON’T be looking forward to going back home for holidays.

1. Can’t Please Everyone

I don’t spend Christmas with my mother anymore. When I was between the ages of 15 and 17, my parents were in the process of a nasty divorce, so I spent Christmas Eve and morning with my father and then went to my mum’s side of the family for Christmas dinner. Her response was unhinged. She was so upset I had spent half my time on Christmas with my dad that during dinner she didn’t sit or speak to me.

Later that night as we were getting ready for bed in a room we shared, she was typing on her computer, still not having said a word to me up to this point. I asked her to be a little quieter because I was trying to sleep, and then she blew up at me with no warning. It ended with her telling me I ruined Christmas. My grandpa ended up driving me out to meet my dad at 1 AM that night. I am forever grateful to my grandfather for taking me out of that horrible situation.

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2. The Evil Stepfather

My mother was a narcissist. She got remarried when I was ten or so and her new man was everything. She had always been abusive, but it was always of the emotional, mental variety. After his unwavering acquiescence of her torment, he came to agree with it wholeheartedly. That's when my life became a real nightmare. For instance, when I was eleven, his three boys came to stay with us over Christmas break from school.

They were showered with gifts. I received none. Their explanation was so messed up. They told me that I was not a good child like his three boys. The eldest of his children, who was around twelve at the time, took pity on me and gave me an RC car that had been gifted to him. When I was caught playing with it, it was taken from me. When the eldest explained he had given it to me for Christmas my stepdad lightly reprimanded him and then took me outside.

I was told to stand still and watch as he ran the RC toy over with his big truck. I then had to sleep on the cold cement basement floor for “taking” presents from his children. I've never celebrated Christmas since. The whole holiday season makes me very emotionally wrecked with bitter intermittent flashbacks of the way I grew up.

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3. A Broken Memento

My late grandmother gave me something of hers, and when I came back from the bathroom, I found that my mother had broken it. I got angry—that's when my mom snapped. She started screaming at me and ran outside after she was done. I was never able to talk back to my mother growing up, but the last few years, my patience with her personality disorders waned, and I just glared at her until she ran away.

I followed her outside and asked her angrily if she wanted to be a part of my family. She said no. So, I turned around and left. She followed me out, screaming the whole time about what a piece of garbage I am. It’s a tactic used by narcissists to degrade someone’s sense of self in order to subjugate them. I told her the only way I’d talk to her again is if we were in court.

So, this holiday season will be the first time away from my family. I’ll be with my wife’s family, who are nice people.

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4. Making It Manageable

One year, two of my brothers got in a fistfight on the front lawn. Another year, two of my brothers got stoned and cut the Christmas tree I bought because they were "trimming it" to fit in the stand. I always do 90% of the cooking, but I’m left to sit in the living room with two of my brothers’ random friends because there was no room at the table.

I regularly play referee, and I always have to buy or at least wrap my own presents. Yeah, I don't go home for the holidays anymore. Want to know the best part? Since I started not going, I receive yearly calls about how unmanageable the holidays are when I'm not there. Ha! I enjoy them with my husband who gets me gifts and wraps them and appreciates my hard work.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsPexels

5. Everything’s Falling Down!

My since-passed grandfather brought a Craigslist working girl to family Christmas. Of course, she preceded to get loaded and hit on me. But it gets even worse. She actually tried ripping off my shirt; a couple of buttons popped off. My grandpa, after seeing this, comes over and screams at her. She takes a swing at my grandpa, and he attempts to grab her.

I get in between them to try to separate them. This was all happening next to the bar shelf which is getting run into and begins to fold. I have my leg propping up the shelf from falling while holding each of them apart while they swing away at each other and me. Took what seemed like an hour for my brother to step in and help.

My family then took my grandpa’s side and disregarded the event even happened. I didn’t attend the next three years of holiday events.

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6. These Aren’t Gifts At All…

I was dating a guy for a few months when Christmas rolled around. He had recently started a new job that required travel. This was before smartphones and built-in GPS in your car were common, so I splurged a bit and got him a Garmin to help him find his way. Thoughtful, useful, but not too sentimental; it felt perfect for where the relationship was at the time.

Due to schedules, we couldn’t get together until a few days after Christmas. The second I saw him, my stomach dropped. In my haste to go see him, I walked right out the door without his gift. I didn’t realize it until I got to his house, and I felt terrible, but he said, “No worries, I’ll give you your gifts now and I’ll just get mine later”. Cool. So, he goes into the other room and comes back with two wrapped gifts.

I noticed some of the paper was messed up like it had been rewrapped, but didn’t think much of it in the moment. I carefully unwrapped the first package—and I couldn't believe my eyes. It was an MMA magazine. That had clearly been read. I was…confused. I do not like MMA. Not even a little bit. Nor have I ever expressed interest in MMA. Not once. He, on the other hand, loved all things MMA.

Trying to move on, I politely thanked him, set the magazine down, and refocused on the next gift. I could tell it was a DVD from the shape of the package. And indeed, it was a DVD. A Forrest Gump DVD. With the cellophane wrapper missing. Now don’t get me wrong, Forrest Gump is a solid choice. Except, I already owned a Forrest Gump DVD.

And now here I was suddenly the proud owner of a second copy that appeared used. I again thanked him, and sat there quietly, trying to wrap my head around how he could have arrived at the conclusion that a used magazine on a topic I didn’t like and a second-hand DVD of something I already owned would make for good Christmas gifts.

He also got a little quiet, then sheepishly volunteered, “I, uh, got bored so I watched the movie yesterday”. I just stared. “And then I, uh, hadn’t seen that issue yet…so I went ahead and read through it. I think you’ll really like it!” I slowly responded, “So…you got me a magazine because you wanted to read it and then watched the movie you got for me because you were bored?”

His only response was, “Well yeah, I guess so”. I left not long after. The next day, I returned the Garmin for a full refund. About a week later, he called and said he didn’t think it was working out. “No problem,” I said, “I don’t think it’s working out either”. As we were wrapping up the call, expressing well wishes and all that, he paused for a beat and said, “Hey, uh, were you still going to give me that Christmas present?”

Romantic Backfired FactsShutterstock

7. The Nutcracker

I’ve been with my girlfriend for like two to three years now. Her family considers me a part of their family, but my girlfriend’s mom and aunt are probably the most hypocritical and insane people you could ever meet. Aunt believes that if you use a GPS, you don’t deserve to live in that state. She proceeded to get everyone lost when she was driving us around on vacation.

She had lived in Florida for 27 years by that time. The mom is a manipulative narcissist who actually said to my girlfriend and a mutual friend of ours that she only keeps my girlfriend around as someone to "let her anger out on". This year, I got the worst of it. For Christmas, I went over to my girlfriend’s home to celebrate with them before celebrating with my girlfriend at my house.

I got a present from the aunt who sent something over. I received a single rubber duck that had the bottom torn out of it. A note was stuffed in the opening, and on that note was the sentence, “If you are reading this, you killed the birdie!” There was also a painted rock that was almost completely black with the words “best buds” on it.

The mom was the worst one though. I got a nutcracker from her. I didn’t fully understand it at the time. But I finally got it when my girlfriend’s dad took me aside and said in a hushed tone, “I’m sorry for the gift, but she has given that to boyfriends as a threat”. That’s right, I got a broken rubber duck that blamed me for killing it, a painted rock, and a threat that if I did anything to upset my girlfriend, that her mother will use the nutcracker.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

8. Laundry Emergency!

My husband's uncle called me four times on my birthday before 8AM, leaving cryptic voicemails about how he needed to talk to me as soon as possible. I started to panic. I thought someone was hurt. I called back maybe 20-30 minutes later when I was fully awake, and he told me to rush over to his house. I get there and he says he had a gift for me and wanted to make sure I got it on my birthday!

I watch him pull a men's polo out of his laundry basket and say, "I saw this and knew you'd love it!" I'm a petite woman who doesn't wear polos. He found a men's large polo shirt in the back of his closet that he was given at some event 15 or more years ago, somehow thought that was emergency worthy, but also didn't need to even put it in a gift bag or anything.

He crumpled the shirt from the laundry to my hand. It's been almost three years and I'm still perplexed by it.

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9. Friends Or Family

I lived about two and a half hours from home but hadn't actually lived there for 10 years. Anyways, I have a small family, and we had a Christmas get-together 2 weeks before actual Christmas. However, my wife’s best friend’s father passed from cancer, and he was also a good friend of mine. His funeral was my family's planned Christmas get-together.

I did not go home for that get-together, as I obviously went to the funeral. They...did not take it well. I literally had to receive wrath from Grandma about caring more about friends than family, and my aunt eviscerating me on Facebook. I haven't spoken to any of them in five years because of that, and I'm perfectly fine with it.

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10. A Relaxing Visit

I was laid off and went back to visit for the week. Times were tough for me, and I just wanted to relax. I hadn't lived there in seven years. But the week I went, my mom was really laying into me to clean her house, do her dishes, wash her laundry. I told her I don't live here anymore and I'm not doing her chores. To which she flipped out and started yelling at me.

She's always been a two-faced backstabber, but I'd had enough. I immediately walked away from her, packed my bag, and got in my car to make the 10-hour drive home. I haven't spoken to her since. That was almost three years ago now. I have no desire to see her ever again. She's caused nothing but misery and pain in my life.

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11. Nobody’s Here!

I flew home for Christmas from across the country. Upon landing, I was informed that my sister would not be joining us because she couldn't get the day off. My parents knew this well in advance but didn't want me not to come. I was also informed that we would not be doing Christmas with my extended family as they were busy with my cousin's husband's family.

Since I don't have a great relationship with my family, I was already pretty crushed. Still, it was worse than I ever imagined. I spent Christmas Day with my mother and father until my father left around 2 PM to visit his friends. My mother then went to bed around 3 PM and didn't wake up until the next day. I decided to wait to have dinner until someone either woke up or came home.

My father came home around 6 PM, and he forced me to hug him despite my protests while he was just in his underwear. He then proceeded to run to the bathroom and puke his guts out. Yeah, I'm just not going back.

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12. Last-Minute Plans

My husband's family is just far better at making reliable plans than my family, so they usually win out. I can't travel all the way across the country to try and see my sister and brother when they refuse to nail down plans more than a day or two in advance. "Oh, you're coming into town. Cool, text us when you get here, and we'll try and meet up". Except when I arrive, they forgot they had some other obligation half the time.

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13. A Good Brother

My older half-brother and I️ would go to our mom’s place for Thanksgiving even though she didn’t raise us; our real dads and grandparents did. Thanksgiving of 2000 when I️ was 14, our stepfather made the mistake of hitting me in front of my brother. My brother is 14 years older than me, so he was in his twenties when this happened. I’ll never forget the distinct sound of genuine hatred when he screamed at our mother’s husband. We didn’t go back for the next holiday.

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14. My Meddling Mom

My wife's family is all deceased. The only one left alive on my side is my mother. Still, every time we go see her, I regret it instantly. We are quite literally all she's got, and still she tries to meddle like heck in our marriage. Last Christmas, after she left, we went to a marriage counselor because things got so bad.

The counselor said we are both more than fine and to limit contact with nightmare mother and mother-in-law. We no longer see or hear from her anymore.

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15. A Troubled Family

My mom spends most of her time in the heart of the city, scoping out opiates. My dad spends most of his time looking for ways to make money or rip people off. My aunt lives out of town, my uncle is usually beating up his girlfriend or trying to score. With my well-paying job, my cozy apartment, my sanity, and peace of mind, I just avoid anything with family altogether. Holidays or not.

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16. Temper Tantrums

Literally every Christmas, my stepdad causes a fight. I've learned to think it's funny, and just laugh at his 5-year-old tantrums now, since I no longer depend on them whatsoever. I just leave if he gets really annoying. His antics are usually because someone wrapped presents wrong or opened a present in the wrong order.

His tantrums consist of throwing things, breaking things, slamming doors, peeling out of the driveway, and veins exploding from his forehead. It was scary to watch when I was 10, but now it's just comical. He’s in his late 50s now.

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17. Stop Belittling!

One side of my family is just a bunch of blowhards who all went to Ivy League schools and work on Wall Street, and they just suck. I definitely went to a good school and have a good job, but every year they tried to make me feel like garbage. I got accepted in an early decision to a good college, and at Christmas that year the cousins go, "So, did you apply early because you didn't think you'd get in anywhere else?"

I started dating a nice guy and had him over for drinks at Thanksgiving, and they said, "Wow, your boyfriend went to this school? What kind of job is he planning to get with that degree?" They want you to squirm and feel insignificant so they can feel better. So, I finally came up with a devious way to stick it to them. I just started telling them what they wanted to hear.

I moved for a good job, and first thing they said last year was, "So you're living in that neighborhood? Isn't that a bad part of town?" I just said, "Not really, but I don't make a lot of money, so it's all I can afford! Oh well!" They just looked really shocked and then THEY were the uncomfortable ones. Felt so dang good. Try it out against people like this.

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18. Money Between Brothers

As a North Indian, the Diwali holiday is our most important one. Everyone is supposed to be together at home and celebrate, worship and stuff. It's also the festival when the goddess of wealth Lakshmi is worshipped. My extended family has messed Diwali up majorly for all us cousins, because it's a constant tussle of brothers.

They fight about power over the family business and the wealth it has collected over the years. It has gone from the celebration and worshipping of wealth to a day of fighting for said wealth. I’ve stopped going home for Diwali to just dodge this scene.

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19. So Many People To Visit!

I went home last Christmas. Finished work at 8:30 PM, drove the eight-hour drive through the night, and made it. I was only going to be there for a few days, and this was during a family argument. I saw my immediate family, then went to my grandmother’s place. That night I received a text from my aunt saying that she’s angry I didn’t see her, and I was rude.

The kicker? She works a hundred meters from my Mum’s place, I didn’t know where she lived, and she never tried contacting me. When I go back now, I don’t tell anyone except the people I want to see. This year I’m working Christmas Day for some sweet, sweet bonus pay.

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20. Wrapping Paper Woes

Our first daughter turned one shortly before Christmas in ‘95. At that time, my in-laws lived in a town that was approximately a two-hour drive from us. My mother-in-law asked if we'd be staying at their place on Christmas Eve, and we said, "No, it's kind of difficult with a baby. We'll drive out to join you on Christmas Day".

She wasn't happy, but she said, "Fine, but you have to be here by 10:00 a.m. That's when we'll be opening presents". So, we got up bright and early on Christmas morning, gulped down breakfast, got the baby ready, and got on the road by 6:30 a.m. Driving was a bit slow due to some snow and ice, but we arrived at the in-laws' house at 9:50 a.m.

We grinned at each other with relief. We'd done it! We entered the house, and couldn't believe what we saw. There was torn wrapping paper everywhere. They'd all opened their gifts without us. My husband isn't one for confrontations normally, but he couldn't help it this time. He cornered his mother in the kitchen and asked angrily, "Why didn't you wait for us? We got here on time!"

She said sweetly, "Oh, the kids didn't want to wait". Said ‘kids’ were my husband's younger sister and brother, who were 26 and 21 at the time. To this day, I'm convinced that she decided not to wait because she was punishing us for not staying overnight on Christmas Eve. Whatever. That told us how much we mattered to her, and after a couple more similar experiences, we put our collective feet down and have been celebrating Christmas Day in our own house ever since.

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21. A Really Loud Christmas

Christmas was always at my grans house, and we'd stay for a week or two. I think every single time we were over, my mum would absolutely lose it over something innocuous and start a screaming session. I'd either lock myself in the bathroom to get away, or one time she locked me in there with her so she could continue berating me.

The last few times ended with my mild-mannered gran screaming at my mum for "ruining Christmas again" and then my mum would actually stop screaming and end up apologizing to her. She never apologized to me, of course. I came back into contact with my gran after a couple years and I'll visit sometimes. She'll tell me when my mum isn't there so I can visit in peace.

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22. Holidays Are Stressful, Okay?

My mother-in-law gets so stressed out by Christmas preparations. She thinks everything has to be exactly perfect and exactly according to family tradition, of course. A few years back she put herself in the ER with atrial fibrillation because of that stress. Christmas dinner that year was Subway and Jack in the Box around a hospital bed.

My wife and I have since figured out that, if we stonewall on Christmas itself and wander up a month early or late "just to see them," she doesn't shoulder nearly the same amount of anxiety, because it isn't "Christmas" and it doesn't have to be perfect. We can just have dinner like normal people, next to an unseasonal indoor tree that happens to still be set up and has a bunch of presents under it.

Basically, we stopped going home for the holidays to keep my mother-in-law alive.

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23. “So Kids? When?”

I dread family events simply because I'm in my 30s and still unmarried with no children. Thing is, I'm in a committed relationship, we own a house and we both have amazing credit. The two of us have two degrees and an amazing career, and we do all kinds of fun travel and events and enjoy our time together. Kids are on the docket eventually, but we aren't in a hurry.

My family doesn’t approve. No babies? That means I’m wasting my life, letting the womb cobwebs take over. When am I going to grow up and stop wasting money on cosplay and comic con and start popping out mini versions of me? Honestly, am I the only girl above the age of 19 without kids? Then about a year ago, my aunt pulled me aside. She said something that made me burst into tears. She said I'm an inspiration to her teen girls.

Apparently, she uses my life as an example of what they can have if they work hard and are responsible. My aunt even quietly admitted her oldest is sexually active and I'm an example of someone in an adult relationship who can be responsible about birth control. I cried and thanked her for appreciating how I spend my life instead of pointing out what I'm apparently doing wrong.

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24. One, The Other, Neither!

My parents are divorced, as a kid I was lugged back and forth between the two. If I spent Thanksgiving at one parent's home, then I had to spend Christmas at the other. As an adult I don't like to pick sides, so I chose neither and have come to blame the long distance and exams. Now that I'm out of university, I have a full-time job as my scapegoat.

I love both of them, but I would rather spend my time alone than worry about hurting one or the other's feelings.

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25. Broken Promises

My mom has been terrible to my wife the entire time we have been married. She threatened not to come to our wedding unless we specifically invited certain people. She also said she was going to plan my wife's baby shower but never did. She said she would come to our daughter's baptism, but she didn't. She always makes so many false promises.

The last couple times we were around, she was super friendly to me but didn’t even acknowledge my wife was in the room. She also spreads rumors about my wife when we are not around. That was the last straw. We don't go to her place for the holidays anymore. Sorry, you don't get to be mean to my wife and still have us come to things.

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26. The City And The Country

I refuse to attend any of the holiday get-togethers on my wife's side of the family. She's from a small town in Western Missouri named Boonville and I lived in the Saint Louis area most of my life. I guess me being a Saint Louis city slicker was just too much for her family. As my wife was introducing me to her extended family, I hear someone say, "look at him all dressed up nice and fancy, I bet you're one of those city folk who voted for that Obama".

Except they used much rougher language than that. I just looked at my wife like, "Please get me out of this hillbilly hole". I've never gone back. Yeeeeeehaaawwww!

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27. Nobody Wants This

It was the last Christmas before I joined the Navy. I had about $300 to my name until January, when I would head off to boot camp. Mom told me to go to the mall with my sister and spend $200 on presents for everyone, despite my protests. I said I don't want presents and I don't want to get others presents because it's a stupid tradition for a house full of working adults.

I got yelled at, spent the money on a bunch of stuff that no one wanted, and got a bunch of stuff that I didn't want. I haven't been home for holidays since. After that, I told my family I'm never buying anyone forced presents ever, and never want anything for Christmas or birthdays ever again.

Passive-Aggressive Christmas Gift Stories factsPexels

28. An Empty Nest

We've had the holidays by ourselves for around 11 years now. My husband, our two young adult children, and I. All our grandparents have passed on. We used to get together with my husband's brother and his family, but after he divorced, it was too hard to set up plans as the kids were with their mother some of the time.

Everyone is an adult now and it's even harder to arrange, since some are now married or involved and have other places to be. "Home" is now us. My kids miss their cousins. They've missed them for over 10 years and now it's just a happy memory. I hope someday we'll be able to change it, but I don't know how exactly to do that.

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29. Cutting It Out

The last time I saw my extended family like my aunt or cousins for the holidays was during college. They told me I was going to burn for dating a Jew, and the men were screaming terrible language at the TV while watching football. I went to hang out with my baby cousins, who were in middle and high school, and one of them told me that she learned that white people can only get AIDS if they’re partners with people of other races.

Once my grandfather passed, I cut contact with all my extended family.

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30. Crying At Christmas

We stopped having holidays with extended family when I realized that one: I had cried two Christmases in a row, and two: My partner has never had any input in how all of us celebrate Christmas together even when it was at our place. It also makes sticking to our toddlers' schedule way easier if you celebrate on your own. I can definitely recommend it.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

31. I Can’t Leave!

This year is the first year I'm not going home for the holidays. It's not because of a long-lasting reason, or any bad blood or anything. It’s just because my family is going to Australia for Christmas and New Year's. Me not being a semi-retired baby boomer means I can’t afford to take 2 months off work and fly out to Australia. I’d get fired. So instead, I'll be spending Christmas alone with my cat.

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32. A Discrepancy In Price

My husband’s stepmother gave me, a 36-year-old at the time, a kindergarten size backpack. And the sick joke only got worse. When I opened it, she said, “I actually bought that for a kid a few years ago and she hated it, so I threw it in a closet. I saw it and thought you’d like it. None of us did, we all think it’s ugly". That same year, they gave my three kids gifts totaling all together $15 with clearance stickers on them.

Her biological granddaughter opened a $300 unicorn. Which they made sure we knew cost $300, and then they pointed out to everyone our clearance stickers and what great deals they were. THEN they made my kids leave the room so the granddaughter could take pictures alone with her unicorn. It was the last Christmas we visited them.

Bad Christmas gifts factsShutterstock

33. Why Don’t I Get That?

When I was 12, I bought myself a kindle. Me and my sister spent an entire summer working for our grandpa and stepdad to save up for them, each of us spending about $200. My mom got all three of my brothers a kindle for Christmas and I got some clothes from Old Navy. I was livid, and when I talked to my mom about it, she told me that my sister and I had been excluding our brothers from hanging out while we played video games and it was unfair.

She never apologized or saw anything wrong with what she did, and I honestly still haven't forgiven her almost a decade later.

Karma's a Witch FactsShutterstock

34. The Odd One Out

We went to my dad's side of the family for Christmas like we had done every year for 17 previous years, but because I had turned 18 a few months prior, everyone decided I didn't get a gift from anyone. I still don't understand why. Every other one of my cousins older or younger than 18 got something from someone, and I just sat there awkwardly.

My parents had brought presents for all of my cousins, and those weren't the only gifts they got...but my cousins just simply got nothing for me. It's not like nobody knew we were coming or anything either. I never will understand it. Everyone acted like nothing was wrong.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

35. Rewriting History

I went home for last Thanksgiving and got to hear my crazy stepdad’s theories. For six entire hours. Like, yeah okay, sure, these things could have happened if he insists. But seriously why do we need to do this on Thanksgiving and why is it more than a 5-minute conversation?

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36. Too Much Stuff

My husband doesn't like to go home back east because his parents are now housing his grandmother, who spends her fixed income on all kinds of garbage. They are literally having trouble keeping the house from being overrun by useless junk due to her hoarding. His brother just got married, but the high cost of living in metro NY means they are also living at home. That place is chaos on a normal day, the holidays are just ridiculous.

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37. You Don’t Like Him, Do You?

Last Christmas, I went over alone and left the boyfriend at home as he had plans with his own family. My family has never liked my boyfriend anyway, and makes a point of badmouthing him whenever he's not around. Well, I had been staying at their house for three days and at around 9PM on Christmas day, my boyfriend texts me to tell me he left his family's home.

I ask why and essentially his "totally reformed alcoholic" mother is actually not reformed, and she's selling her pills to a cousin. He catches her and she told him, “Well where do you think your Christmas money came from?" He gives her the money back and leaves. He's in tears because his mom's a piece of garbage, and now he's spending Christmas day alone.

So, I tell my family I'm going to leave and go spend time with him. They start losing it. Asking why he doesn't just come over, there's a family here he can be with. I tell them: "Because he's not stupid. He knows you don't like him". That starts a whole thing dunking on me for telling him that. It all ends with my mom calling him weak for not wanting to be alone on Christmas.

I desperately don't want to go back this year, but I have a feeling I'll get guilted into it.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

38. You Can Come To Us!

My wife and I got tired of deciding which side of the family would get us on which holiday, so we decided to stay home for Thanksgiving and just cook for the two of us. We've done that for several years now, and it's wonderful. We'll visit the kids who still live in our state around Christmas, mostly to hand out presents. Out-of-state kids have to either come here or get theirs by UPS, because winter travel is a pain.

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39. The Annoying Stepfather

Our mother’s terrible husband would always, without fail, make every holiday awful. At Christmas he stood in the middle of the room with a trash bag to grab up wrappings the minute a gift was opened, and then he would vacuum under our feet to rush us out so they could leave for their weekend house. One year, he locked all the doors so the children couldn't get back in from playing.

They're crying, needing to go to the washroom, and we had no idea. He burnt the turkey by turning the oven up to hurry it to being done. Dang, we hated that guy.

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40. You Really Think That…?

The last time I was home for a large family gathering my cousins were having a loud not-so-nice discussion about homosexuals. I, earlier in the day, had a run-in with the local Quickie Mart owner and was talking about how big of a jerk he was. Although my discontent with the man had absolutely nothing to do with his race—he was of Indian descent—my family launched into hours of fun being xenophobic jerks.

I learned a few things that night. One: They think the real purpose of a turban is always to conceal something dangerous. Two: I no longer have any reason to visit home for the holidays.

The Pilgrims factsShutterstock

41. Flaking and Leeching

For some reason, my brother and his wife are super unfriendly towards us and my extended family, including my parents. Just for example, my parents drove eight hours to come see them and they ended up sitting in their hotel room all weekend because he would never make plans or would cancel them at the last second. Note that my parents supported him financially well into his 30s.

Basically, every family function consists of my folks coddling to my brother and having him either blow them off or showing up briefly and being a complete jerk the whole time.


Did I Stutter FactsShutterstock

42. Losing Conversation

Even when I was younger, I never felt much of a connection with any relatives other than my immediate family. Most of my family is from the south and enjoy things like fishing, hunting, and farming. Everyone is also very religious, so there's no drinking. I'm pretty much the complete opposite. I enjoy gaming, I'm introverted, and I love drinking.

Each time I'd go down for Thanksgiving all it consisted of was the super shallow small talk: "How is school? How is your girlfriend? How is work?" and the conversation would fizzle out. I've been going with my best friend to visit his family for thanksgiving for the last five-ish years where they all drink, play video games, and poke fun at each other.

It's a blast. I feel closer to my best friend’s family than I do my own. They make me feel so welcome.

Embarrassing Moments factsShutterstock

43. The Seventh Wheel

Last Thanksgiving, my mom told the entire family how she was depressed and felt like a terrible mother because of me, complaining that I had ruined her as a person. I’ve been struggling with mental health stuff for a long time, and they aren’t very understanding. Also, it's my parents, and my two sisters and their partners, with me being like a 7th wheel.

For the most part, I spend the entire holiday being ignored and talked over or snapped at. Either way holidays just make me feel like garbage. I still have to go, unfortunately.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

44. Changes In The Family

The last conversation I had with my father was him calling me to tell me he kicked me off the insurance and doesn't approve of me being trans. I told him I'll do what makes me happy and have refused to go see him, despite my brothers both asking me to come with them to visit him. For whatever reason, my mother and her new husband always host super awkward holiday parties, and my coming out hasn't exactly helped.

I can handle Christmas, since they usually invite extended family I can catch up with, but Thanksgiving is just the immediate family and anyone we might be dating. Last Thanksgiving, my brother's girlfriend – the only black person at an otherwise very white party – and my own girlfriend actually hugged it out in solidarity due to how uncomfortable it was.

Quit on the spotUnsplash

45. A Ball Of Nerves

My body is made of stress and string cheese. I get very nauseous when I’m not the driver, but I hate long drives. I can’t sleep outside of my own bed anymore, and if I don’t sleep or don’t take my meds, then I get nauseous all day. It’s all a huge hassle to be with people who have infuriating political opinions, and it makes me wish I lived in another body. So, I just... try not to be with them.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

46. A Pressure For Children

My wife has a disease that makes childbirth complicated. She also has a degree in fine arts. We had to wait a long time to have a child. I told my mom that pressuring us made my wife feel unwelcome in the family, and if I had a perfectly healthy wife with a great career and no college debt, I could have had a child much earlier. My mom is unbelievably dense, stubborn, naive, and insensitive. This led to a major fight at Thanksgiving 5 years ago. I've still not got a solid apology from her.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

47. Left Out In The Cold

When I was about 13, like many other teenage girls, I worried about my weight. One dish my family always had for Thanksgiving was candied yams with big marshmallows on top. I opted out of eating the marshmallows. My family's "punishment" was so disturbing I'll never forgive them. They locked me outside on the porch, while I was only in light PJs, standing in the snow.

They enjoyed their Thanksgiving dinner in front of me because the table was right in front of the glass porch door. I was very lucky to somehow not get frostbite, but I learned that day that frostnip can be quite painful. The most crushing thing however is that my grandmother was visiting for that holiday, and she sided with my parents and saw no wrong in this.

She even joined in their later berating. This kind of punishment wasn't abnormal but having someone witness and not care was one of the worst experiences of my life. I don't talk to any of them anymore.

Worst Holiday Stories FactsShutterstock

48. Not The Right Gift

My parents would routinely give me "gifts" like chocolate, or some random thing I don't need like a picture frame. Then they'd go, "Oh you're too fat to eat it, you don't want that chocolate, right?" Then they'd regift my "gift" to their friend's kids. My sister who was in middle school at the time got an iPad and a year later, a MacBook.

Yea, I'd rather not go home to a place that constantly belittles me. I make sure I get my sister a good present but beyond that, I'm gone.

Best Christmas Gift factsPixabay

49. Christmas Alarm

Last time I went home for Christmas, my stepdad told my younger brother and sister to wake him up at seven so they could begin to open presents. So of course, on Christmas morning, they both got up super early, and they waited patiently until seven like he asked them to do before waking the parents up. Unfortunately, my stepdad once again was binge drinking all night.

He was not ready to be up at seven, so he got in a screaming match with my 13-year-old sister, called her names, and pretty much set the stage for one of the most miserable family gatherings I've ever experienced. By the end of the day, he had done something awful to everyone, and Christmas was completely and utterly ruined.

Broken christmas ornament.Getty Images

50. Taking Some Insurance

My dad rigged my car to explode the last time I saw him. He and my stepmom took out life insurance policies on my stepsister and me. That year, I went to their house for the holidays and while we were eating, he went out into my car and loosened up all of the fuel lines. It was a 300zx, so the engine would get really hot. He took off the engine cover so that it was bare metal under the hood.

I caught him outside with the hood up when I went out to smoke. He said he was just glancing around. One day, a few weeks later, the fuel lines popped off while I was driving. The car just sputtered out, thank God, so I jumped out and popped the hood to see fuel had sprayed all over everything. Called my dad to ask what to do.

He told me I had to get the car to his house which was 30 miles away. Instead, I got it towed to my shop and that's where they told me that it looked like the hose clamps were intentionally loosened. I knew that no one else was ever even under the hood. So, I never went back.

Near-Death Experience FactsUnsplash


Sources: ,

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