Calendar gridlocks aggravate schedulers
Adapted from a recent online discussion.
I have three children under 8. Last summer, my niece and nephew both participated in travel sports, which took up nearly every weekend.
I know each family should do what is best for them, but this affects our entire family. Our parents are getting older and cherish seeing all of us together. I tried to put together a Mother's Day brunch, but it was the first tournament of the year for both kids. For our parents' 55th anniversary, my sister said the best they could do is a family dinner on a Tuesday.
I wish I could explain to her that fitness and sports are important, but she is encouraging her kids to sacrifice family time. My kids are in sports, too, but they are not nearly to this level of crazed involvement.
Should I discuss this issue with her,? How much should I visit my parents to make up for her absence?
— Sister Overbooks
Please stop making this about your sister's priorities. Judging her will only escalate this into a much deeper, more hurtful feud. Not to mention guarantee that one of your children will blossom into a surprising talent at some Time Consuming Pursuit, and you will be snacking on your current outrage till your own 55th.
Instead, ask your sister to join you, calendars in hand, in finding dates the whole family can get together.
Even without travel athletes, it's typical for three separate families to have a hard time lining up their free time, and that gives you two choices. You can insist on special dates and open yourself to all kinds of frustration, or you can embrace the idea that sometimes Christmas will be in January and your parents' anniversary will come a month late.
You, after all, in a way are sacrificing family time by insisting that you honor your mother only on Mother's Day instead of choosing a workable date.
But it really means one family controls the dates because they are sobooked. We specifically keep a few weekends free to catch up on errands, relax, etc., but my family member gets annoyed when we don't jump at the few days (hours) his family is actually available outside of their sports commitments. Frustrating!
Sure, the busier people do drive the schedule, but that's just life, and the bigger person doesn't bean-count.
Some pursuits are more time-consuming than others. Is that cause for judging? Some families have more kids and, therefore, more stuff on their calendars. Is that cause for judging? Some people enjoy active weekends more than they do relaxing. Is that cause for judging?
It's a no-win, so I strongly advise no-play.
In your case, the problem isn't overbooking, it's your family member's annoyance, which is bean-counting, as well. Dropping the huffiness is his bigger-person prescription, and he's not taking it.
Still, the response to that is to say, “Hey, we all do what we can — we'll make it work next time.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Sestak kicks off U.S. Senate campaign — with a couple missteps
- Court rules Steelers must pay Okobi workers comp
- 11 Ligonier Township residents rescued by boat from floodwaters
- Elizabeth Township, McKeesport impacted by ice jam on Youghiogheny River
- Penguins need trade-deadline acquisitions to bring toughness
- PennDOT alerts drivers to numerous road closures due to flooding, debris
- Shania’s first tour in 11 years includes Pittsburgh stop
- Owner of Strip District nightclub Ivy agrees to close after shooting
- Police: Suspect in 1970 cold case homicide of 17-year-old dies days before charges filed
- Blue Jays’ Martin has ‘nothing but praise’ for former Pirates teammates
- U.S. clears police officer in Ferguson case, criticizes police force