Couple hosting Thanksgiving at home

Turkey day troubles

One of the most frustrating things about being part of a couple during the holidays is figuring out how to divide your time. He wants to head to his family’s place, and you want to go to yours — so what do you do? We have some simple ways to split your Thanksgiving time, minus a meltdown.

Talk about it early

There’s no point in trying to talk about where you’re going to spend Thanksgiving — the day before Thanksgiving. That will just be a recipe for a massive blowout if you both have a different idea of what the plan should be. Start talking now about what you both want, where you think you should go and why you feel that way. Ideally, by giving yourselves enough time to hash out an agreeable plan, you’ll figure something out that suits both of you.

Try to be fair

This goes for both of you. Of course you want to hang with your family on Thanksgiving (no one beats Mom’s gravy and mashed potatoes), but he also wants to see his family. Each of you has to come to the table to talk with fairness in mind. If you went to his family’s place last year, this year it’s your turn (or vice versa). Or, if you head to your parents' place the day before Thanksgiving, you can spend the actual day at his. Find a way to incorporate both families as a way to avoid an unnecessary fight.

Think about distance and logistics

Does one of you have family at a distance? Will flights be involved? Think about how much you can spend to get there before you make your decision. If you won’t have the time or money to get on a plane and spend a week with his family, then it’s not fair for you to struggle to make that happen. Factor in budget and time off work before you decide to hit up one family versus the other.

Host an event

Still can’t figure out whose family to visit or how to split your time? Have both of your families come to you. If you both cook (and live together), host the event at home. If you don’t, or your place is too small, make a reservation somewhere serving turkey dinner. If neither family lives close by, choose a spot in the middle and meet up halfway at a restaurant or even a hotel to spend the night so no one has to drive back in the dark.

More relationship tips

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How to get your point across without nagging
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Comments on "Food fight: Splitting Thanksgiving between his family and yours"

Heather November 17, 2012 | 9:48 PM

My boyfriend and I do Thanksgiving at one place and Christmas at another. Feelings are hurt at first, but it's fair, and we switch the next year. Sometimes we have to adjust because of out-of-town guests, but it keeps us sane!

Jessica November 05, 2012 | 8:47 AM

I think you should discuss it beforehand and not make a big deal about it! If you want to spend it together, and he really wants to be at his family's house, agree and then suggest either dessert at your family's (if travel isn't inconvenient) or next year is done at your place.

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