Nothing under the tree

This is my first Christmas without my parents (mam died in January and dad in October). I wanted this to be a good Christmas for my boys (15 & 20) so I put the decorations up and bought presents to put under the tree, normally it’s money only, so they can buy their own things without disappointment. I bought my fella a few little things too.

I’ve had nothing. Not even a card (well my fella got me one). He wants to buy me something from a jewellers once the shops are open again.

Normally, I’d let it go but this year after my heartache I hoped there’d be something. I don’t care about the cost - it’s the fact that someone will have gone to the trouble of picking something, wrapping it and putting it under the tree. Showing me that they’re thinking of me instead of just presuming I know they think of me.

It’s hurt me you know :broken_heart:

Please don’t have a go at me - I just want to matter to someone as the people who I mattered to have left me :cry:


It won’t have been an easy day for you, This is my first Xmas without my Mother too. I have two grown up boys at home and guess what… No presents or a card off them either, I don’t take it personally they just don’t seem to think I’m bothered. You do matter to your boys and partner but maybe the whole not giving presents thing is just a male thing it’s same with my birthday, doesn’t even get a mention. Try not to dwell on it too much I’m just grateful I’ve got through today without any drama and that’s it for another year
Take care xx

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Hi there, i’m so sorry you have experience this, I lost my Mother several weeks ago and am sadly having my first Christmas alone too. Sincerely hope you are managing as well as can be despite what you have said.

I have to say (to Lou001) that male folks aren’t always too quick on the update when it comes to how much certain things mean to the fairer sex. I remember being 13 and it was my Mum’s birthday; instead of getting her a present and a card, I decided to give her my pocket money back instead! I thought she would be pleased! No, she was furious and frogmarched me around to the shop to get her a card and some sweets!

She gave me a very stern talking to about how much these things, and the little things in life, make all the difference to people and Mothers especially. Since that day, I have been extraordinarily generous with people, I never give to receive and I never miss a special day or occasion.

If Mum hadn’t given me that talking to, I might not have become that way. Some Men can be very naive, don’t be afraid to give them a talking to because you will save problems for them down the road. It made me a better person, it might just do the same for them too.

God bless you

@Lou001 just copied you in on my post, hope it helps you, feel for you enormously. Don’t be afraid to be tough because you will make them better for it, trust me on that

Things have escalated. I was so sad on Boxing Day - it took me by surprise tbh. My blokes idea of sympathy cuddles is groping me and instigating sex. Now I was not in the mood that day as I felt so bloody sad. He got in a right huff (which he always does if I spur his advances). I got myself up and showered and apologised for being miserable (thought it might lift his mood if I took the blame) then suggested we go for a spin in the car. He said no what’s the point all moody and went off for a shower.

I was so hurt and angry and with how sad and lonely I felt. I had to get out of the house so just went for a drive by myself as I couldn’t cope with his pathetic mood while I was so sad. He didn’t text or call to ask if I was ok. Mind you he has me on his find my friends thing so knows where I am so why should he. I went to the hospital where my dad had radiotherapy, it’s a 40 minute drive away and we had lovely chats each day we went (13 times), it made me feel closer to him. I sat nearby and cried and cried. I then went to my mum and dads house and just lay on the sofa watching tv. I was gone 5 hours in total and I felt better for it.

I was dreading going home and as I suspected, he didn’t speak to me when I got home, then went to bed at 7.30pm - I went to talk to him but he told me to leave him alone. He said I’d left him alone all day so he may as well be alone now. I told him how sad I was and I needed his support but he just said for me to leave him alone. Oh and he said that I’d obviously been talking to ‘someone’ all day anyway.

This was Boxing Day and he only spoke to me tonight and what did he do…groped me. No apology - nothing.

I actually think he thinks I’m weird for the way I grieve. He doesn’t understand me obviously. I actually really don’t like him at the moment.

If I talk to him he turns everything on to me and just walks out. Then won’t speak to me for days.

He is perfect and everyone else is wrong! This is what he does and I’m so mad with him!

@Parrot09 - Quite frankly, you deserve a thousand times better than being treated like that.

He is supposed to be your rock, he is supposed to be there for you during the very worst of times and helping you with anything you need.

I have to be honest (for your benefit) that it sounds like he has mental health issues. This kind of behaviour is not normal; he seems to not be able to give enough of himself to be kind and supportive to you, he almost seems to see it as a “weakness” which, quite frankly, is ridiculous.

One thing is for absolute 100% certain, you Dad would not want you to be treated like this and if he was here and saw the above, he would probably tell you to leave him. Maybe this is time for a whole new fresh start and potentially be with someone who you can count on and who will be there for you when you really need it. You deserve better, and he doesn’t deserve you…


Thank you for your reply and concern.

My friend says he’s trying to get coercive control over me (which I agree with). And he did a couple of years ago but I got stronger and managed to fight back. My dad knew about his mood swings and behaviour but he also really liked him too and I think he might have thought I was being dramatic sometimes.

I’m going to get counselling I think. It’ll help me become stronger so I don’t need him to lean on and his pathetic mood swings won’t bother me.

You’re right though, he does take my vulnerability as weakness. You’ve hit the nail on the head. And he does behave like this when I need him the most.

I’m a strong person and I’ll get through this and if he’s still by my side at the end of it will remain to be seen.

Thank you again James

By the way, I’m sorry for your loss James and I hope you’ve had the support you need to get through this sad time of year.

It’s so important to feel we can lean on someone when we feel low.

@Parrot09 - I feel for you because my Dad is the same,

He saw vulnerability as weakness and whenever she needed help (even when she was heavily pregnant with me) he would pour scorn on her relentlessly. I recognise the signs.

She divorced him and ended up with a very decent, kind, supportive man and was happily married to him for 23 years until he passed. It’s far from easy, it wasn’t for her, but she changed immeasurably…my Dad dissauaded her from making friends and joining societies and the like which made her feel so depressed and vulnerable. Once she was with her new husband, she lived life to the full, learnt how to drive and gained her independence, took up painting, singing, amateur dramatics and dancing . Her new partner encouraged her and was very proud of her, that’s what a husband should be at the very, very least. She lived that way and was still ten to the dozen at 80 years old until sadly passing last month.

I think counselling would be a good move. You are clearly smart, intelligent, and kind…you deserve much more than this, far more. My Mother felt like a doormat at times and that’s want a lot of Men want, they don’t you to be more than them, they don’t want you to have more friends than them…they want to feel superior to you 24/7, that’s what your husband and my Father are like.

I sincerely hope you find happiness and peace, you deserve it.


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I feel worthless a lot of the time. I feel I have to ask permission to go to a friends house. I never used to be like that.

Anyway, I’m so glad your mum found love and happiness :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: and I’m sorry your dad is the way he is. It’s brill that you recognise how he was/is and you won’t be like that yourself.

@Parrot09 I’m so sorry he is so controlling, it’s truly awful.

Yes, I learned a lot from my Dad by doing exactly the opposite! I am about as far away from him as you could imagine thankfully. He’s 84 now, completely alone in a run down house, no friends, has been single for 38 years since divorcing my Mother…he still blames everyone else, it’s “all their fault”…“You reap what you sow” is the right expression there. I still contact him and do what I can (even though he sometimes throws it back in my face just because he is in a bad mood) because he is my Father after all, but I have little or no sympathy for him because he has brought it all on himself.

The difference between my Mum with my Dad, and without my Dad, was night and day. It was a total transformation. I sincerely hope you can experience the same, I genuinely do. You are worth so much more…


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He’s even controlling in the driving seat. He’ll do things that aren’t mannerly and blame it on the other driver and yet when it’s done to him he goes mad. If I tell him he’s in the wrong he goes mad.

Anyway, this isn’t the place to go on. Gone off topic.

Thank you James and here’s to a better 2021 :heart:

@Parrot09 I think this place is for a bit of everything, it’s part of the support process and part of you moving on, whether you decide to stay with him or not. I’m glad you felt able to speak about it.

Here’s to a better 2021 as you say my friend, bless you, stay safe.


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Dear Parrot,
I just read your posts for the first time and wanted to wish you a happy new year, and really hope your boys are supporting you. Losing both parents is obviously massive. It’s life-changing and you need time to grieve without pressure or stress. I loved your instinctive thought to drive to the hospital. I wish I could do that too. Wishing you peace in 2021.

Thank you FelixTheCat.

It feels like ages ago now - I’m glad I’m not that sad at the moment although I’m sure it’ll happen again. The state of the world right now isn’t helping either.

I felt a pull to drive there. We had so many conversations about life each time. My dad was a wonderful man who was an open book and would give me the best advice and helped keep my head out of the clouds.

Thank you again xx