Originally Posted by InfinitePossibility
I consciously make more effort to maintain my friendships and interests as an individual than was necessary when I was single. I mostly also turn up to family events alone - if pushed, I sometimes offer to bring a friend.
I remind people also that I am a whole person on my own, that I love my SO but he doesn't complete me and he doesn't need to follow me around and do things with me unless he wants to.
I really like this and I admire your success with it.
It's a struggle for me to explain this to my family, though. I've been getting some "Why didn't you bring him to Thanksgiving" hysterics. If I say "I'm a whole person on my own," they say, "Of course you are, dear, but why don't you want to spend holidays with him and have us meet him and don't you want your brother to meet him and doesn't he know we REALLY want to meet him?"
I only told them about his existence in the first place because my grandmother appeared to be dying!
Nothing makes her happy except to hear that I have a man in my life. But, it turned out she didn't die--she survived a heart attack at age 95 and now seems to be going strong...
The one time I brought a (gay male) friend to Thanksgiving, my family pitied him for "having nowhere else to go." In fact, he'd come to my house to avoid his own family and to help me demonstrate to my family that I have a perfectly happy, fulfilled, sociable life even when I'm not dating someone...but that backfired...we were both regarded with pity...us sad lonely singles! Never mind that this friend is STILL one of the most important people in my life, after nearly 10 years, while many sexual & romantic partners have come and gone.
So, now I go alone to Thanksgiving and drink a lot of wine.
Also, if I brought a sexual/romantic interest to Thanksgiving, my family would ask him a lot of detailed and irrelevant questions about his family history, childhood, upbringing, etc. Instead of just normal things that one would ask a friend.
I daydream about bringing my current lover-friend to Christmas and having him talk about the kinky sex he has with other girls...that might finally kill off my grandmother...