Sure, in some circles it’s almost fashionable to bemoan the stress of the holidays and to trade tales of woe about yet another reunion with one’s dysfunctional family.
Don’t believe everything you hear.
According to a recent survey, Americans were most thankful this year for their families.
Sixty-one percent said the opportunity for family togetherness is the most important aspect of Thanksgiving, according to a survey commissioned by StoryTerrace.
Fifty-eight percent said that Thanksgiving has produced their most treasured family memories.
And about half said that the most interesting family stories are forthcoming during the holidays.
These folks certainly weren’t wishing they didn’t have to go to Grandma’s house for dinner.
“Sharing and understanding the life stories of your loved ones as well as maintaining close, personal bonds with the older generations in your family is incredibly valuable,” said StoryTerrace’s founder and CEO, Rutger Bruining. It not only preserves the legacy of your loved ones, he said, but helps you — the listener — “develop a greater sense of self” and your place in the world and in the family.
It’s good to be reminded that family get-togethers remain, for many of us, warm and emotionally sustaining events.
Yes, dysfunctional families and dysfunctional reunions exist as well and are difficult to endure. The burdens of such a legacy are even heavier at the holidays, and should engender compassion for those in such situations.
But don’t allow yourself to be swayed by all the snide stories about Thanksgiving horrors or to become too cynical about the holidays. Family time at the holidays remains meaningful and uplifting for many Americans. And that’s something for which to be thankful.