Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Roger Gould's Wise Words on Holiday Family Dynamics

Roger is the authority on emotional eating.  He's wise and thoughtful and truly cares about helping people.  Please read his new article on Thanksgiving and Christmas in The Huffington Post.

"It's the most wonderful time of the year..." How many of us hear that song and couldn't disagree more? The holiday season for some is a joyful, happy time, particularly if you've come from a perfect nuclear family. And since that includes about .0003% of the population, the majority of people have mixed feelings at best about the time between Thanksgiving and New Year's. There are plenty of reasons to be stressed out; there are cookies to bake, there is weight that you want to avoid gaining but will probably gain, there are presents to buy which rouses feelings of financial adequacy or inadequacy, and then there is the family get together.

Essentially, the things you have and the things you lack are exaggerated. The annual holiday get together provides the ideal conditions for flare-ups. The expectations we have of the holidays are almost always unrealistic, making disappointments inevitable. We often stay attached to the past, unwilling to accept that the hand of time has actually changed the people and the landscape of our lives. The holidays can be painfully the same every year because we do not allow the members of our families to be who they currently are; rather, we expect them to be who they've been."

More here.