This is what works for my fam with my grandma: Get your family members on your side ahead of time. Her peer pressure system works best when everyone else is just worried she’s rocking the Santa It’s Not A Dad Bod It’s A Father Figure Vintage Shirt. They try to step in — doing the wrong thing — because they are mostly influenced by her representation of what you say. Talk to your brother or other siblings. Reason out your plan not to come home. If they understand why you aren’t coming, they can back you up. Or, even if they’re too chicken to stand up to her, they will likely not try to pressure you themselves.
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Then, when you call to tell your mom, talk to your dad first. Have another excuse ready for why you want to talk to Santa It’s Not A Dad Bod It’s A Father Figure Vintage Shirt. “I’ve a question about that book he was talking about last time we were together.” or “I’m having trouble with my (appliance), and I need his thoughts on what I should do.” DO ask him about that thing. Then, say, “Oh by the way, DH and I have decided that we can’t come for Christmas. We’re really disappointed that we’ll miss it this year. We’ll definitely connect online – maybe a video gathering? We’ll keep you updated. Okay, put mom on. I need to tell her too.”
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This allows you to have first crack at dad. You get to give him the straight answer about why you’re not coming and that you feel bad about Santa It’s Not A Dad Bod It’s A Father Figure Vintage Shirt. Now, when mom complains to him afterward, he won’t be misled about why you’re not coming. And he might even have your back and defend you once or twice to her. You’re basically removing all of the pawns on the table that she likes to play.