You don’t have to reunite with the toxic people in your world just because the holidays are here. If someone makes you feel shitty about yourself, then you shouldn’t reach out to them. You shouldn’t attend their holiday party. You shouldn’t put yourself in an uncomfortable position just to seem polite.
It doesn’t matter if you feel bad about leaving them hanging on a holiday you used to spend together. It doesn’t matter whether they’re the one who texts you first and you feel guilty about ignoring them. It doesn’t matter if you have good memories attached to the day. Those good memories don’t override the bad. Your history with them does not link you to them eternally. You have no obligation to wish them a happy holiday, so don’t let anyone pressure you into sending that text.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. They might guilt trip you by reminding you the holidays are a time to be kind to one another. They might encourage you to forget the bad things that happened in the past and be the bigger person. But you cannot let them fool you into opening your heart back up to someone toxic. They don’t understand the situation as well as you do. They don’t get to make such a big decision for you. If you don’t want someone in your life, you don’t have to answer them. Better yet, block them. Delete their number. Don’t give them a chance to disturb your holiday.
You might think sending one little text is harmless, that it’s the least you can do, but one text can quickly turn into a conversation. One conversation can turn into two. If this person is manipulative and used to mean a lot to you, it will be pretty easy for them to convince you to give them another chance. Think about how hard it was for you to walk away from them in the first place. Do you really want to put yourself through that again? Do you really want to lose all the progress you’ve made?
Remember, you don’t have to do anything that makes you uncomfortable. You don’t have to go to holiday parties if you would rather stay home than deal with certain people who are going to be there, making you feel bad about yourself. You don’t have to send a text to someone who hurt you if you would rather keep your distance. It doesn’t matter what time of the year it is. If you don’t want this person in your world for the other 364 days of the year, then why would you bother to speak to them on the holidays?
Maybe you’ll seem rude by ignoring a text sent over the holidays — but maybe that’s a risk you have to take. Maybe your mental health matters more than what some person who is already out of your life thinks of you. Maybe you should put yourself first for a change instead of trying to please everybody else.