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Celebrating Christmas will be difficult this year.


Camille is feeling the pressure from her grown children to celebrate a traditional Christmas even after losing her husband this year. She's just not in a jolly mood but doesn't want to ruin their Christmas celebration. Mary offers some heartfelt advice.

Download a transcript of this Mary Maxwell video (PDF)

If you're already caring for an aging relative, finding ways to celebrate special occasions while dealing with health issues can be challenging, especially for those who are homebound. We've gathered ideas for making a meal special, creating a festive mood and surprising your family member with entertainment or a customized gift in our holidays section.

Celebrating Christmas will be difficult this year.

Mary Maxwell, Posted December 1, 2013

Camille from Seattle writes, "I know holidays can be stressful, but my children are about to put me over the edge. This is my first Christmas without my husband, and quite frankly I just don’t feel like being jolly. They insist that I follow tradition and buy the huge tree, hang the lights, pull all the decorations from the barn, and have our traditional Christmas Eve party. I’m just not into it this year. How can I tell them without ruining their Christmas?"

Camille, I’m so sorry for your loss. This first Christmas will be hard. I’m thinking that you should say to your children….go for it….but, you do it, kids. Dad would love it if you took over. And I’ll tell you a secret. My father died when i was a junior in high school and my mom decided that the best thing to do would be to go ahead with the usual stuff, but to let everybody talk about dad. It was so great to be able to talk about him. We’d all been walking on eggshells so as not to mention dad and make people sad.
Oh, and by the way, the kids should take care of the cleanup, too.

Watch the video,

Visit to discover more wit and wisdom from Mary Maxwell, as well as expert advice from Dr. Amy D'Aprix and other videos, articles, and resources for family caregivers.

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Thoughts and stories from others
  1. December 10, 2015 at 6:35 am | Posted by sammie Crouch

    i lost my husband in May 15 and i have no family here in Ga . my only 2 kids hate me so i am a long they live in calif. i have no one for the holidays it was so hard on thankgiving i almost ddidi not make it. I love to have a some one to talk to on the holiday i have a church family but it is their holiday to so i do not ask no one to help me but i am lonly so bad and i am sick i have BP problem . thank you


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