Marriage & Family: Celebrating Holiday Traditions

Oct 09, 2007, 01:00 ET from California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

    SAN DIEGO, Oct. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- 'Tis the season for newlyweds to
 celebrate holidays with their newly acquired families. Despite the joy,
 exchanging holiday cheer with extended family members and participating in
 new traditions, especially religious and ethnic customs can be daunting,
 challenging and stressful.
     To mitigate the anxiety of celebrating the holidays with new family
 traditions, the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
 (CAMFT) recommends engaging with the new contemporary family by making
 seasonal visits more meaningful, rather than allowing the occasion to
 threaten your own beliefs and traditions.
     -- Avoid stereotyping. Limit yourself on categorizing people in groups.
        Look for differences that you value about your family members.
     -- Respect cultural differences. Some customs are difficult to understand
        and hard to accept. Even though you may not agree with certain customs,
        learn to respect your family member's beliefs.
     -- Express yourself. Closing yourself to your family members will only
        make them feel more uncomfortable. Don't be afraid to be yourself and
        share your personality.
     -- Share your cultural background. Help them to understand what is great
        about your customs. Talk to them about family stories that promote your
     -- Listen. By listening, we can improve relationships and show that we
        care about what others have to say.
     -- Learn new things. Don't be afraid to interact with family members even
        if there is a language barrier. Maybe you can learn some phrases or
        research about different cultures.
     If you still feel that these differences are too overwhelming or
 difficult to resolve, consider contacting a Marriage and Family Therapist
 to help. Therapy can help with relieving stress, communicating more
 effectively, and addressing issues that might be difficult to handle. To
 learn more about mental health or to locate a MFT, visit
     About CAMFT
     The California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT),
 with 27 chapters throughout the state, is an independent professional
 organization, representing the interests of licensed Marriage and Family
 Therapists. CAMFT provides as a resource to
 prospective patients looking for Marriage and Family Therapists located in
 California. For more information CAMFT, please call (858) 292-2638 or visit

SOURCE California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists