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Keeping the Holiday Joyful with Your Partner

Nov 15, 2017 03:12PM ● By Staff Writer

TODAY, THE HOLIDAYS BRING OUT THE BEST AND THE WORST IN RELATIONSHIPS. For many couples, holiday tension and anxiety have replaced the season’s magic they once felt. Many are so busy chasing the picture-perfect holiday, they lose sight of their partner. Holiday romance is furthest from their minds as they find themselves squeezed in the pressure cooker of family obligations, the stresses of budgetary constraints when buying gifts, and the plain hard work involved in hosting large family gatherings. 

Multiple studies have shown that established couples argue five times a day between Christmas and New Year’s Day. Holiday stresses can distance us from our significant other, leading to feelings of isolation, loneliness, and resentment that can fester long after the season has passed. Below is expert advice for reining in holiday mayhem and rekindling yuletide romance.


Hectic schedules and financial pressures magnify trivialities, fueling squabbles that can easily escalate into serious arguments. Minor offenses you wouldn’t notice at any other time of year can become a major battle. Recognize when your relationship is under siege from the holidays and hold your fire.


The number one holiday disagreement is where to spend Christmas. Arrive at a fair compromise. If your in-laws live far away, alternate years for spending the holidays with them. If they live in town, split Christmas day in half.


Studies have shown that couples who most enjoy their holiday together spend the least time at the mall or worrying about buying gifts. Shift the emphasis from things to people, and from spending money to spending time. Give your entire family, especially your partner, more of your attention so that everyone feels part of the yuletide spirit.


Sometimes you just have to stop worrying about everyone and everything else and focus exclusively on your partner. Plan special, quality time alone during your holiday, then prioritize the occasion, guarding against potential interference and interruptions. Make the holiday experience enjoyable and memorable for your special loved one, and let them know they’re still the reason for the season.