Dating at Christmas

The holidays can be tough and there can be a real strain on a relationship, whether it's a new one or you've been together for years.

At what point do the strains of the holidays take over from the enjoyment?

So you've decided that you're buying your new companion (remember, no B word yet) of 4 weeks a gift...and somehow you can make your Christmas budget work to include him...but how on earth do you know what to buy?! You've been to my his place a couple of times, you've cooked a roast together (very important step in any relationship), and you've had enough time to suss what he's like. But if you still can't mentally call him a boyfriend then how do you know what to buy him for Christmas?!

I feel sorry for the guy I've been dating, this is a rough time of year to date me. Not only do we have Christmas but only 6 days after that is my birthday and just for good measure I'll throw in a party another week after that (I learnt years ago that a New Year's Eve birthday party on New Year's Eve is not worth entertaining at all!). The poor guy has to think about gifts, an insane amount of time out of his diary at the busiest time of year and potentially meeting everyone close to me in a very short space of time. And we've only just met!

My fear of defining our relationship also takes hold at about this time; how do I introduce him to everyone, how do I act around him in front of all my closest friends, am I ready for him to meet my mum?!

I'm trying to go with it as much as I can but there's something about the holidays that puts an insane amount of pressure on relationships and I'm overthinking everything.

So here's my goal for Christmas; to enjoy the time with my friends and family and to take every minute as it comes and not stress about anyone's expectations, particularly those of people I don't even know. And I have an amazing incentive at the end to get through it all...a couple of days spent with a man who so far seems pretty great.