I go through the motions of Christmas. I put on my phony, I'm okay mask, and use a soft, gentle voice for everything I say. I feel the stress when everyone arrives; building and building from seeing the smiles, hearing the voices that get louder, and the laughter. All of it is an invasion to the world of depression I live in. I dare not speak of it or I hear a ton of solutions and ridicules to "make me laugh/smile." I tell myself it's only for a few hours, then they are gone. I'm polite but I mostly try to observe them from an objective point of view. When I get the chance, I get away for 5 or more minutes to sit with my eyes closed and breath. I try not think and I try not to feel. When they go home, I'm so exhausted. Christmas has no meaning anymore. Only memories of phony, egotistical, codependent family members. So many hateful things have been said. Both sides of my family are guilty and the same goes for both of the in-law families in my life. Many of them have died and I don't miss them. My thoughts are, what goes around comes around. To everyone here who is experiencing a painful Christmas, I will be thinking of you and praying for you. I know I'm not alone in what I'm experiencing and somehow that helps me.