This a Public Service Announcement to my loved ones: I am boycotting Christmas this year. PLEASE DO NOT BUY ME ANY PRESENTS. Consider donating to Three Square instead. If at this point you’re rolling your eyes and asking “What is her deal NOW?” just read on.
I can’t keep it a secret any longer: I hate Christmas.
Yep, I’m a fat, fuzzy green Grinch, and I’m proud of it! Actually, I’m probably more of an Ebenezer Scrooge, because I resemble an old British man in more ways than one (i.e. I like to shake my cane at young people on my lawn). Either way, all those sneering villains in classic holiday movies are my heroes, because they understand what most people don’t: Christmas kinda sucks.
I’m anticipating the blowback for this post to be equivalent to, if not just as bad, as when I made a passing negative comment about Disneyland. But this time I actually think I have some decent points to make, so bear with me for a minute:
If you are an adult, particularly an adult female, Christmas is just a ton of work. It’s important to clarify that I believe Christmas sucks AS AN ADULT. When you’re a kid, it’s easy to love Christmas because you don’t really have to do anything to make it happen besides helping to decorate the tree. You get showered with gifts and get to eat all your favorite foods and spend time with your extended family. However, when you’re an adult, you’re expected to provide that experience for yourself and others. And on whom do tasks like baking, cooking, decorating, hosting guests, and shopping for gifts typically get delegated to? Women, because we have uteruses (uteri?), which supposedly makes us good at these dumb things while men continue to ruin the world.
- Disclaimer: I understand that there are plenty of people–both male and female–who genuinely enjoy preparing for Christmas. However, I just don’t think it should be expected of any one person in a relationship or should be expected at all if you don’t want to do it.
- Christmas has become a ritualistic worship of capitalism. This point has been made over and over again, but there’s a reason for that. Christmas is about presents, period. I get excited about Christmas because I know I will get stuff, and then I remember that I have to get stuff for other people, and then I’m like “UGH.” There’s pressure to buy gifts for everyone you know, hope that the gifts you get from others are equal in value to what you got them and vice versa, and correctly anticipate who is going to get you a gift so you aren’t empty-handed in return. Personally, I go into debt every year buying gifts and I know that the same is true for many of my friends. There is something seriously wrong with a religious holiday becoming a financial strain due to unreasonable expectations.
- I have many wonderful friends whose “love language” is gift-giving, and I think that gift-giving is fine in and of itself. However, my issue with Christmas gifts arises when loved ones do not clearly communicate what to expect from one another. I think there needs to be more of a dialogue between family and friends about what they can reasonably spend on gifts so they avoid making dumb choices like I do. “Hey, I can’t afford to buy presents for everyone in the family. Can we do Secret Santa instead?” “Sorry, but money has been tight lately. Are you okay with a homemade gift?” Etc., etc.
- Most of the stuff we do to celebrate Christmas has NOTHING TO DO WITH JESUS. Remember that part in the Bible when Jesus said, “Hey guys, make sure you hit up Black Friday to get mediocre sales on things you wouldn’t normally buy anyway”? Me either. Here’s what Jesus actually did say: “Lay up not for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal.” I think Jesus is probably freaking out like: “C’MON GUYS. There’s poor people, like, everywhere!!! Why are you standing in line at Burlington Coat Factory?!”
- So what can we do to make Christmas more Christ-centric (if that is your desire)? How about not being incredibly selfish, like me? How about giving to those who aren’t mostly white upper-to-middle-class yuppies, like most of the people I associate with? How about not failing at being Christian anymore, like I do all the time?
- Santa Claus is creepy. He is literally an old, fat man who stalks children and breaks into their homes at night. Can we get rid of him already?
Many of my family and friends have aptly pointed out that I will probably be more motivated to do the whole Christmas thing if/when I have children. They are correct. However, this year I’m going to do what Jesus might prefer I do: spend time with my family, try not to be so indulgent and self-centered as I’ve been the past twenty-six Decembers, and find someone who could use my help.
But you better believe I’m watching A Christmas Story on repeat all day long, because TBS knows what’s up.