By Nico Strydom
Holidays are supposed to be a time of peacefulness and relaxation but with families and in-laws who often go on holiday together, conflict could arise.
The conflict can arise during the holiday with everybody rather just keeping quiet in order to try and keep the peace, and then after the holiday you realise that not everybody was on the same page. Due to conflict family holidays can easily deteriorate into a period of stress and tension.
There are several things that could lead to conflict during a family holiday. Perhaps all of you are staying together under one roof and with a lack of privacy so that not everybody can carry on with their daily routine as they would have at home. This could lead to family members becoming irritated with one another, and this in turn could lead to conflict. Perhaps there already was conflict between certain family members due to a previous event and this is perhaps the last straw.
When families are together some of them could feel that now is the right time to talk about stuff that happened in the past, which could open old sores and lead to conflict. Children and how they are raised or their behaviour can often also lead to differences of opinion and tension.
The question is therefore whether conflict should already be addressed during the holiday or should the parties wait until everybody is back at home and will the conflicting parties then sort it out among themselves? This depends on the situation. If it is possible to get the family member aside and talk to them without affecting everybody else, it could be a good thing to try and sort out whatever the problem is.
If it is impossible to solve the problem easily and fast, it could perhaps be better simply to forget and forgive. The persons who were in conflict could then make an appointment when everybody is back at home and try to come to an agreement.
It would also help if everybody understood that family holidays could easily lead to conflict and that everybody would therefore have to be more careful with each other in order to make sure that everybody has a good time and can rest. It is necessary to be adaptable during a family holiday and to take others into consideration because all of a sudden a lot of people with different opinions are under one roof and spend a lot of time together. When things get a bit too much, there is nothing wrong even during the holiday to spend time away from each other where everyone can do their own thing.
Sometimes conflict during a family holiday is unavoidable but a lot can be done to make sure that it does not spoil everybody’s holiday. Sometimes it is necessary to manage expectations, set personal boundaries and take other people’s needs into consideration.
Focus on the Family: https://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/handling-holiday-conflict/