But it needn't be that way. We got off the Christmas bandwagon ages ago - more than a decade in fact. I found it was making me unhappy - profoundly unhappy. The idea that you had to travel on the busiest days of the years during the worst weather imaginable just seemed idiotic to me. And then you have to buy junk for people who don't really need or want it - all at a very high cost, charged on a credit card. And then you basically sit around with relatives for a whole freaking week with nothing to do but see the new Starwars movie with every other person in your town. No wonder the box office is doing so well.
Another suggestion is to take a holiday at Christmas. Get out of town. Fly down to Florida or some warm Caribbean island and really enjoy yourself rather than stress out about decorations and family. I suggested this to a friend of mine once, and it worked out well emotionally and financially.
He was moaning about "having to go see his dysfunctional parents" for Christmas and how miserable he would be, staying at their house (in his old room) and how his Father would inevitably get drunk and abusive. Once back in the family home, he was the child again, and his abusive Father took advantage of it. Ten days stuck in a house with your family with nothing to do but eat, watch TV, and relive your childhood is a recipe for disaster. My friend's wife was none too happy about the whole deal. He felt trapped by convention (reinforced by the TeeVee) that one must "go home for Christmas" every year.
If you are in college, going home for Christmas might be in order. But once you leave the family unit, your goal in life is to start your own family. At that point, Christmas is something that you can (and should) celebrate in your own home, with your own immediate family. Going back to Mom and Dad's house every year at Christmas, when you are over 30, is just embarrassing. Grow up! This is not to say that you can't go back ever. Just that you are not obligated to.
So my friend flew down to a warm Caribbean island and enjoyed 10 days with his spouse. I can tell you that she enjoyed it much more than the fun abusive Christmases she had in the past at his folk's place. Once the chain of dependency was broken, there was no going back.