shutterstock_159337934Whether you are married or just starting to settle down, it is a question that every couple needs to face at some point: Where are you celebrating the holidays?

It is never an easy answer. And it is never worth arguing about.

Start from a place of openness and respect. Everyone likes to be around their family at the holidays. It does not make a difference if your family is farther away, or if you feel you are closer to your parents than she is. There is no point in comparing families or distances or which will be more fun. (It’s not about fun.) Consider your options and start here:

Try ever other year.

This option is popular, but requires some immediate sacrifice and commitment. Commit to rotating each Christmas at each other’s family’s. This is equitable, but means that two whole years go by without spending a holiday with your family.

Split Thanksgiving and the December Holiday.

This one is usually rotated, and is also reasonably equitable. The main issue with this option is expense, especially if both families are far away

Split Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

If Christmas is our holiday AND if both families are reasonably close, you can split Christmas Eve with one and Christmas Day with the other. However, who gets which day might still be up for a debate.

Do Both.

Hey, it might be tough, and require a ton of travel, but, if you can swing both families and that would make both of you happy, it might be worth it. Explore this option is it physically (and financially possible), even if it is inconvenient.

Spend Christmas Eve Together, but Christmas Apart.  

If you cannot decide which family to spend the holidays with, perhaps you are not ready to spend them together. Plan a Christmas Eve (or special Christmas celebration) together, and spend the rest of the holiday with your family. This does not mean you are not a successful couple. It only means you both want to prioritize your family over the holidays.

Skip the Families.

Spend it together. If you are both ready, it is an equal sacrifice for you to decide to stay home together. Perhaps this is not the best option for newer couples, but any family should respect you wanting to spend time together on a day you appreciate your loved ones.