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Coping with the Pressure of Christmas

Not too long ago, I wrote about Thanksgiving and about how it can be a difficult time. As I’m sure a lot of us know, Christmas can be just as hard to get through, if not harder. This is during a point of time in the year where we’re supposed to be reflective and put in a lot of effort to be happy and give back. But, sometimes it can be the exact opposite. 

The Christmas season can bring out the very worst in people. I know this because I’ve been through it. I’ve seen people get so pressured to have a great time during the holiday that any problems that they might have only get more intense and others start feeling it. 

I know my experience is very unusual, but my grandmother actually died on Christmas a couple of years ago. We had just opened gifts and were making breakfast when we got the phone call. Christmas has never been the same since. 

Like I said, my case is unique and it’s more likely that people are going to feel pressured to have a good time and end up getting angry due to stress than losing someone, but I’m just putting it out there that both have happened to me. It’s especially hard when you’re dealing with a mental illness. 

So what do you do in times like these? My husband and I are trying to start new traditions. We’re going to give back, spend some time with dear friends, go to a church service, and just try to have as much fun as possible. For Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, we’re going to let the little things go and just be. 

Is that always so easy? Heck no! But it’s worth a shot. This is one time of the year where we’re going to be focused on the moment and not the bills or the drama going on with the world. Just this one time of the year we’re going to focus on others and Jesus Christ and of course, each other. 

If your old traditions aren’t working, try making some new ones this year. It doesn’t matter how big or small. You deserve to feel good this Christmas. I hope it ends up being a good one for all of you. It doesn’t matter if you sit around and sing carols or volunteer, do whatever makes you forget your troubles this one time. 

Sarah regularly blogs for IBPF and has done some YouTube Videos for their channel. She now writes on a regular basis for the Dallas Morning Post as well.  


I was in nursing school this time last year and the instructors were so immature and childish they made me feel ashamed of my disease I never hid my medical history from them and I'm very open it did not end well I had to choose a different degree to pursue because of their ignorance.Shame on them for discriminating and humiliating me.

I was just feeling the familiar Christmas sadness earlier today. I was listening to Christmas music and had to turn it off. I'm 53, single, kids are grown and gone, parents are out of state. Yeah, I'm starting my own Christmas traditions but it'll never fill the hole I feel being single. Add being bipolar and it makes for a very bumpy ride. I have my church and my church family - thank GOD - without my faith I'd be screwed.

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