Christmas Sucks

My Miserable Life

277. Christmas dinner in my bedroom (12/14/09)- Art, Mexico, Age 44

Every Christmas dinner was a real mess. My dad used to get drunk with his coworkers and arrived at dinnertime too drunk. Then my stepmother yelled at him and threw dishes. I had to get something for dinner before the fight broke out and eat it in my bedroom. They would stay angry for the next three days. This repeated year after year with little or no difference.

276. Woke up in a meth house (12/14/09)- Charles, Tennessee, Age 23

I'm gay and in the closet with everyone - even myself. My dad died when I was five and my mom died a few years ago. I got strung out on meth really bad for a couple years after that. While I was strung out, my sister disowned me, my family hated me, and my electricity got turned off a month before Christmas 2005. I remember getting stoned, drunk, taking Xanax, and getting really tweaked on Christmas Eve. I woke up Christmas morning in a meth house, on some three-year-old’s bedroom floor (that smelled like piss). I was alive – unfortunately - so I got tweaked again.

275. Found him having sex with my girlfriend (12/14/09)- Dave, USA, Age 30

No matter how hard I’ve tried, I've never been as successful as my older brother, who is an MD.  All the women seem to flock to him. I consider myself lucky to have had only one (attractive though!) girlfriend.  Every year we always had Christmas at my parents’ house, where we grew up. We always stayed in our old rooms.  Because I have a crummy retail job, I always have to work late on Christmas Eve.  Last year when I got to my folks’ place, I went upstairs to change...and found my brother having sex with my girlfriend in my bed!  My crackhead liberal parents blamed it all on me, saying it wouldn't have happened if I had only paid more attention to her.

274. A dead loved one’s gifts (12/14/09) - Robert, USA, Age 34

When I was 14, I was awakened at about 2:00 a.m. in the morning on Christmas Eve by my mom saying, "Dad is in trouble. We need to go." The only thing I really remember was us flying through Lake Charles, LA, to try and get to my grandparents’ house. Once we got there, I saw my grandmother crying, saying, "What's happening?" (She was in the onset of Alzheimer’s). My grandfather was lying there motionless. Then I noticed that the heart monitor was showing a beat! But this was only his pacemaker. We buried him three days later, but Christmas has never been the same for me since that day. My father died when I was two and my grandfather filled the void. There are few things in this world worse than having to pull a dead loved one’s gifts from under a tree so that your grandmother (who is now more than confused) won’t see them.

273. Stuck in rehab (12/14/09)- Mike, USA, Age 18

A couple of years ago I was stuck in rehab during Christmas in Utah. That day I got dumped by my girlfriend. I cried all night long, locked myself in a padded room, and thought about how miserable my life was.

272. Wrung all the Christmas spirit out (12/14/09)- Anonymous, Nevada, Age 45

I have spent a total of ten years working as a retail clerk in various stores, and each year I had to be working on Christmas Eve. One year, I was the sorry soul who had to break up the fights between customers over the damned Cabbage Patch Dolls. Another year, I worked in an upscale store and had to tend to stuck-up yuppies who were living off of their credit cards and expected to be given preferential treatment simply because they had an American Express Gold Card. (When the stock market did a tumble a few months later, they tried to return many of those items for refunds. I took perverse delight in telling them the return period had expired.) Praise whatever powers that be that I no longer work retail. My relatives call me "Scrooge" or "Grinch" every time the holiday rolls around, because of how cranky I get and how relieved I act when it’s over. I have to explain to them that working retail has wrung all the Christmas spirit out of me.

271. Prostitutes and alcohol (12/14/09)- Johnny, Iraq, Age 25

I couldn't go home for Christmas the year before last without losing my cushy job as an overseas military contractor.  I spent the six previous years away from family at Christmas due to the military, and it crushed my mother.

Last year, I finally got everything arranged to be at home for Christmas, even arranging to surprise my mother.  Then, three days before I was supposed to leave, Dad sent me an e-mail saying not to come - Mom decided she wanted to go to Mexico for Christmas. So my non-refundable ticket to the US went unused.  I just took the connection to Amsterdam and proceeded to spend 25% of my annual income on prostitutes and alcohol.

270. Merry Christmas for me (12/14/09)- Landan, New York, Age 34

This is what happened the Christmas when I was 9 years old:
December 3: My Dad died of cancer.
December 15: My mom slit her wrists in the shower. She died.
December 17: My two older sisters, 16 and 18, got completely drunk and died in a car crash. I still don't know if they did it on purpose or not. 
December 25: Merry Christmas for me.

269. She told them I raped our daughters (12/14/09)- Anonymous, Florida, Age 50

My wife is bipolar. We have been married for 22 years. In the last few years her "manic/psychotic" episodes have been coming more often. She had one last Christmas and again this Christmas. This year she has called the police and told them I raped our daughters and threatened to do it again. Then she called and told them I beat her with a belt. Thank God the police know about her and do not believe her, so I have not had to go to jail. I only stay married to her for my children. She cannot work or support herself. Not only does Christmas suck, life sucks.

268. They gave me a toilet plunger (12/14/09) - Victor, US, Age 46

I’ve got nothing as traumatic as most stories here, but my brother and his wife gave me a toilet plunger for Christmas, because I stopped up the toilet in their house while visiting the year before. They also thought it was funny to give me a singing shark gag gift the next year. Really "funny".

267. The coldest woman on the planet (12/14/09)- Anonymous, California, Age 25

My mother is the coldest woman on the planet. She has never told me she loves me. She had nothing growing up and was very poor, so now she likes our house to be a museum. My brothers and I were never allowed to help decorate the Christmas tree because we would make a mess of it. The ornaments we made as kids were always in the back. My mother buys all of the Christmas cookies and cakes and puts them out on a plate and tells people she made them because she doesn't want to mess up the kitchen.

My mother screamed at me tonight, Christmas Eve, and tried to slap me because I said I wanted to make Christmas cookies since she never does. I know she is upset because I had surgery on the 18th and now we cannot go to my aunt's house like normal for Christmas. She is upset that she has to cook and deal with all the mess of Christmas Day tomorrow. My dad told me today that my mom ruined his life and that he should have married his first love. I just took a Percocet and a Valium and am going to bed.

266. A carnival of horrors every year (12/14/09)- Ali, Texas, Age 23

Every Christmas is miserable for me, and it's not because I have a horrible family or that something horrible has ever happened to me on Christmas.  It is because of where I work.  For the last four years I have been a portrait photographer in a major retail photography chain.

Now, I know that a lot of retail based jobs are horrible at Christmas, but I'll be willing to bet you that my job is worse than yours this time of year.  You are trying to sell a person the most perfect image of their family and children that can be created, and it's just never perfect enough for them, especially when they're putting the image in their Christmas card.  You get to see true human nature around the holidays, and how fake people are.  This is especially true when photographing both sides of a large family.  I have seen people come close to a fist fight and then turn around and smile for their portraits.

 Also, because of our overbooking policy, we have to turn away people who are more than 5 minutes late for their appointments.  Try telling that to someone who just spent hours getting several children and a reluctant spouse ready.  I would gladly give up the warm fuzzy feeling of this holiday and the gifts, etc, if I didn't have to witness this carnival of horrors every year from November to January. 

265. I’ve been fired every Christmas (12/14/09)- Bill, USA, Age 28

Christmas is a curse. I have been fired or laid off every Christmas since my first child was born. I always get the speech: “You're a good worker, I really like you as a person but...” Why am I being fired again? Right before Christmas?  Of course I can never find a job in time, and if I do I never get a first check before Christmas.  This year both me and my wife were fired from our jobs. We signed up for donations and got accepted. But here it is, the day before Christmas and they never came through.

I have already liquidated everything I can afford to sell and we have two gifts each for our two kids. I'm a rotten father, I hate my life and if I thought these kids wouldn’t be affected by the loss of my life I'd kill myself.  Bah Humbug!  Oh wait, there’s more. My daughter’s birthday is less than a month away. Someone kill me.

264. They put the puppy to sleep (12/14/09)- Kasumi, USA, Age 17

I came to the US to visit my sister for the holidays. She has two kids (which doesn't help since I'm definitely not a kid person) and a cute little Rottie pup, only 4 months old. The week of Christmas, the following happened:
Her only truck got repossessed (which is horrible for all of us because I need a ride to the airport to go home!)
Her dog got sick and was throwing up left and right (which I mostly cleaned up). Soon after, we found out it had parvo and they had to put the dog to sleep. 
Her daughter broke her nose at school
And the plane ticket up here IS my Christmas present, say my parents. Great, right? It's not the worst Christmas ever, but for me it's the worst by far.

263. The odor of bleach (12/14/09)- Venom, Miami FL, Age 23

Christmas Eve morning of 2005 I woke up in a horrible mood for some reason, and I took it out on my girlfriend. We lived in a hole in the wall efficiency that was the size of a prison cell. Our landlord heard everything: the name calling, me badmouthing her, our fists of fury and objects slamming into the walls. She was so upset she gave us a notice of eviction.

My girlfriend was fed up, so she packed her stuff and left me while I was taking a walk to cool off. When I got back, I smelled a very strong odor of bleach. I opened the door and found the place was trashed and all of my clothes were in the middle of the room with bleach stains all over them. I drove to a friend’s house and he was nice enough lend me some clothes and let me spend the night with his family to enjoy some good cooking.

After dinner I went outside to smoke and found a coconut in my car’s windshield, which shattered it completely, plus huge dents and the right side rear window broken I was so pissed I didn't know what to do, so I went back inside and drank away to the worst Christmas I ever had.

262. Drug-fueled rage (12/14/09)- Shannon, New Zealand, Age 18

When I was 10, my mum (who had her share of useless boyfriends) went away and left her latest to care for me. We never really got along (not to mention he was a chronic drug addict) and he couldn’t make it a day without his fix of amphetamines. Everything was fine and my mum was due back on December 24th. That day he went out for a few hours and came back in a rage. Unfortunately for me I hadn’t emptied the dishwasher and he didn’t have the patience or tolerance to deal with that. His drug-fueled rage caused him to reach for the sharpest tool next to him. Sadly for me this was the butcher knife. I spent Christmas in hospital that year, and he spent that year behind bars. Haven’t seen him since - good riddance!

261. Smile! (12/14/09)- Michael, Lexington, VA, Age 16

For three years, I hadn't gotten anything for Christmas because of the expense of my braces. Last year, I found a wrapped box with my name on it and flipped shit! I opened it up, and to my surprise, it turned out to be a cardboard box with a slip of paper inside it that said "Smile!"

260. It's going to be hard to stay sober (12/14/09)- Nils, Sandy, UT, Age 43

My Christmas this year will suck. My ex-wife and her new husband (the family friend) have all four of my kids, a state away. None of them talk to me because, even though I have been sober over a year, they all think I'm a junkie loser. I lost my accounting career before I got sober and this year I am working a dead end job with no money to visit the kids or get them anything, except for what the child support might get them. But my ex-wife doesn't talk to me so I don't know anything. It's really hard being poor, but not getting to see the kids is much harder. It's going to be hard to stay sober this Christmas.

259. Four sandwiches, four punches (12/14/09)- Liam, UK, Age 15

I have very abusive father. He doesn’t drink, do drugs, or own guns, but he has the shortest temper of anyone I have ever met. He seems to think everyone can read his mind, and if I get even the smallest thing wrong he gives me a beating. Last Christmas, for example, he told me to make him a turkey sandwich, so to avoid trouble I just did as he said. When I gave him the sandwich, he threw it in my face (with the plate behind it). He told me that there was too much butter on it and punched me in the face, knocking me to the floor. Then he told me to get up and make another one. I had to go through four sandwiches till I got it right, and I got a punch to the nose for every time I got it wrong. I had blood streaming down my face by the end of that Christmas.

258. All I want for Christmas (12/06/07) - Sage, New York, Age 19

My mother died Dec. 15, 2001. I was thirteen years old. My sister was eleven (her birthday is Christmas Eve). Every year since then, Christmas hasn’t been the same. Every year I wait to see mom downstairs with my father, ready to open the gifts and dance and laugh. Every year I cry, alone. All I want for Christmas is a hug from her, and to tell her that I love her, and I miss her, and I hoped that day would never end.

257. Welcome home, Pop (12/06/07) - Steve, Ohio, Age 20

When I was 17, my dad was in the hospital over Christmas for sepsis, low renal function, gout in every joint, and congestive heart failure. He had suffered a minor heart attack and we took him in. The doctors were amazed he was still alive. He was in the hospital about a month and was released three days after Christmas, good as new. When we got home, he lay down on the couch and watched T.V. for about an hour. Then the phone rang. I got it for him, and it was his mother, calling to say my grandpa had just died.

256. Vigilante dad (12/06/07) - Tim, Maine, Age 33

The worst Christmas I ever had was three years ago. My ex-wife had taken our two offspring for Christmas at “her house” (with the prick she had been cheating on me with while we were married). I spent Christmas Eve with a bottle of bourbon, watching "Face/Off" on my laptop and listening to the wind howl around my apartment building. Christmas morning, I woke up to the phone ringing, and it's my daughter crying her eyes out. She told me that Todd (the jagoff my ex dumped me for) had touched her in her “swimsuit area” while my ex was asleep.

I hopped in my car and went to my ex’s house. I pounded on the door and yelled, “I want to see my kids!” Todd opened the door and said, “What the fuck are you doing here?” I grabbed him and started beating the shit out of him. We fought for about 15 minutes, then the cops showed up (thanks neighbors!). The cops dragged us apart and began hitting me with their nightsticks. I yelled, “This cocksucker was raping my kid!”

The cops shoved me into the squad car and I spent the day in the holding cell. Then one of the cops told me that my kids were being released to their Grandmother. The next day, I got out of jail and went home to my answering machine. There was a message saying that neither my ex or Todd can care for the kids now. So my mother is bringing up my kids. She will do a better job than me. Now I have to find Todd and kill him.

255. Clean and sober S.O.B. (12/06/07) - Amy, Minnesota, Age 37

Last year, my big brother was inspired to try rehab. At Christmas, he began to brag to everyone how he'd turned his life around, which I wasn't buying for a minute. After going on and on about his recovery and his quest to "make amends," he was in the back bedroom begging my sister for some Vicodin (she was prescribed it after surgery).

On top of that, ever since he figured out I was a lesbian, he's made that the yearly topic of ridicule. Last year, he made a huge deal out of my gift, calling for everyone's attention as I was opening it: he got my partner and me four flavors of Joy Jelly and a tiger-striped velour blanket that smelled like incense. I was incredibly pissed, but I had to be nice and respectful of his new, "sober" self for the sake of my mom.

254. It’s just a flesh wound (12/06/07) - Nick, New Jersey, Age 18

The Christmas right after the Xbox came out, in addition to the console and games, my brother and I had asked our dad for various knives and swords. He got us some pocket knives. One of them was razor-sharp and came in a leather sheath. After opening it and examining the blade, I tried to force it back into its resting place. The blade went through the sheath and through the web between my thumb and index finger. My dad freaked out and said I ruined Christmas. My drunken mom just screamed until he took me to the hospital. (She couldn't take me because she couldn't go out in public without any make-up.) I got stitches. The whole episode, which my older brother had videotaped, later was used as evidence in my parents’ divorce.

253. Three days to find the body (12/06/07) - Ann, Illinois, Age 25

My Dad had been in the mental ward all of December. Three days before Christmas, he killed himself. However, we didn't find out until Christmas Day, when the cop showed up at our door. It had taken them three days to find his body; he had killed himself in our family car out at a lake.

Another Christmas, my Mom beat me and my sister for putting socks in the clothes hamper that should have been folded and put away. Socks ruined Christmas that year.

252. She never made it home (12/06/07) - Les, New York, Age 19

Two years ago on Christmas Eve my mother was mugged and killed by a crackhead while she was bringing home our Christmas presents. She had hidden them at work so my sister and I wouldn't find them. Since my mother often worked late even on weekends or holidays, we just assumed she would be home by Christmas morning. Instead, the police came by around 11 p.m. with the bad news and what was left of her personal belongings: the gifts. The crackhead took her purse and all her jewelry but left the couple of wrapped boxes she had in her arms.

The next day, my father took off for good (apparently he and my mom hated each other at that point; he didn't seem to care when the police gave us the news), and left my little sister and I alone in the apartment to open our dead mother's gifts by ourselves. She bought me the video game I had asked for. I have been in and out of prison since then and my sister is in foster care somewhere I can’t find her.

251. Our dog died under the Xmas tree (12/06/07) - Chelsea, Long Beach, Age 20

Two Christmases ago my parents, my ex-boyfriend, and our dogs travelled to Canada to spend Christmas with my grandmother. A few days after we got there one of our dogs was acting slightly ill, having intestinal problems. We took her to the vet on Christmas Eve and he said she had ingested a small amount of poison. The vet gave her some vitamins and told us she should be fine. That night, at midnight, she bled to death out of every orifice. She died underneath the Christmas tree with all of us around her. I had raised that dog from a pup and had her for nine years. It was horrible to watch her die.

Oh, yeah...That's also the same day my ex-boyfriend smacked me hard enough to make the insides of my cheeks bleed, and tried to make me promise not to tell my parents.

250. Dumped, drunk, and suicidal (12/06/07) - Ada, Santa Fe, Age 26

Last year I found out I was pregnant and my boyfriend convinced me to have an abortion. His reasoning was that he wanted to get a better job to have more money to raise a kid properly, and that it wasn't the right time. Right after I did it he broke up with me. Two weeks later I found out he had been cheating on me for weeks with some bimbo. I spent the holidays drinking myself into oblivion and contemplating suicide. Christmas dinner with my family rolled around and I got completely wasted, started a fight, and drove home drunk. The next morning I found myself sitting in a cold bathtub with my wrists partly slashed. Now a year later, I still drink every day.

249. Christmas in rehab (12/06/07) - Kristen, Colorado, Age 17

A couple of years ago, my parents sent me to a treatment center in Utah. This place was hell, especially on Christmas. We had to go through seminars, and had to do work to complete them. If we didn't make it, we weren't allowed to watch movies. Instead, we had to sit in a room and listen to educational tapes and take tests on them. On Christmas, while they played movies, I was sitting in a room listening to stories about old philosophers and taking tests. Meanwhile my family was home opening presents and having a normal Christmas.

248. Pink slip from Santa (12/06/07) - Wendy, Cincinnati, Age 39

This Christmas will suck. On December 12 my coworkers and I were told that our building will be closing and the accounts we service are being sent to another company. We can follow the accounts to have a job, but we would lose all our seniority, vacation, etc., and the new company is known for layoffs. If we don't take the new job, we get severance, but it will only amount to a week and a half for every year we've been there. I was sick a lot this year and had to use paid leave. They changed companies towards the end of my leave and the new company refuses to pay for the last 2.5 weeks. I had no pay check two Fridays ago and the one coming on this Friday is less than normal. On top of that, I am in the middle of buying a house and I have a 10 year old (and no child support). All gifts except a few for my 10 year old have been returned to the stores. I am not supposed to drink because I am diabetic, but I think I will need some alcohol to get through this mess (that is, if I can afford it).

247. As if I didn’t exist (12/06/07) - Gabriela, Maryland, Age 18

Last year on December 23 I got into a huge fight with my father and it got very violent. I left the house and slept in the car in the parking lot of my work. The next morning, I returned, hoping to reconcile, but was instead told to pack my things, give up my car keys and leave the house, even though I was the victim of the violence, not the other way around.

I was taking care of my neighbors’ house while they were out of town, so I ended up spending Christmas Eve and Christmas Day across the street from my own house, sleeping on my neighbors’ couch. Through the window, I could see my family celebrating Christmas without me, as if I didn't exist.

246. Amateur chimney sweep (12/06/07) - Win, Southern Illinois, Age 18

The Christmas when I was 7, I saw my father fall from the roof of a house. My grandmother’s chimney was clogged and letting smoke into the house. We had to stand outside in the snow, then my idiot father decided to unclog it. He climbed onto the roof and then fell off of it, while the whole family watched in horror. He broke all of his ribs and had internal bleeding, but survived.

245. He buys gifts for his mistress (12/06/07) - Heather, Thomasville, Age 34

I found out on December 23, 2003, that my husband of 10 years was having an affair. He said he broke it off but then bought her a car. He comes and goes, but does not want a divorce, and if I file for one he will kill me. Every Christmas, he still buys both of us gifts. I am the one who usually gets shafted. I don't get him anything. The last three years have been terrible. I want to find someone new, but my husband would kill us both. He is the biggest jerk on the planet. I dread Christmas, because every year he ruins it for me.

244. Another Christmas ruined by cancer (12/06/07) - Clark, Great Britain, Age 28

The summer before last, mum was diagnosed with cancer. We had a rubbish summer, but Christmas was the worst. We used to have large gatherings of people, too much food and drink, and loads of presents. All that doesn’t matter. What counts is spending time with your family, and that’s what will never be the same again.

This year no one can talk about what happened. It’s terrible to watch the strongest woman you have ever met waste away. Even after the inevitable happened, still no one talked about it. If this happens to your family, take one piece of advice and for crying out loud talk about it - just communicate.

So here I am, alone at Christmas. I’m going to a friend’s for lunch tomorrow, but I haven’t put any decorations up or sent Christmas cards. It reminds me too much of last year, when mum couldn’t eat her dinner because she was so ill. I don’t know if I’ll be able to eat my lunch, but at least I will be round a table talking to people, and hopefully not getting upset.

243. Holidays up in smoke (12/06/07) - Connie, New York, Age 32

When I was six my dad got dead drunk and plunged headlong into the Christmas tree we had all worked so hard to string popcorn for and make beautiful. After I got married things went progressively downhill from there. One year my children set the living room rug on fire. Ex hubby and I quickly stomped it out. Last year my idiot boyfriend spent all my money on weed, so guess what both of us got…Nothing. This year was better. I spent the holiday with my new (non-druggie) sweetie and his family. One good Christmas - I think it’s a fluke.

242. Domestic disturbance drama (12/06/07) - Bruce, Connecticut, Age 35

I have a 19-month-old son and was really looking forward to enjoying Christmas with him. I decided to take two weeks off work, my first vacation since I got married. On December 18, I came home to find my wife and son gone. My wife came home within an hour and informed me that she was leaving for her father's house and I wouldn't see my son again. On December 23, I was served with divorce papers.

On New Year’s Day, my wife agreed to let me see my son, but only under the supervision of my parents. When I got to my parents’ home, I took my son and drove him to my house to open the Christmas presents I got him. Within five minutes, my wife was breaking into the house, knocking out doors and windows with a cinder block. She eventually made her away up the cellar with a 2-foot lug wrench, threatening to take my son. I called the cops and informed them that she broke into the home and was threatening me with a deadly weapon. The cops came and we were both arrested! I still don't understand why I was arrested, but the cop informed me that in Connecticut, state law requires that both parties be arrested during a domestic disturbance.

241. Christmas of the living dead (12/06/07) - Matt, California, Age 28

Christmas of 2004 was my worst Christmas. My grandmother insisted that I join her at her brother’s house a couple hundred miles away for Christmas dinner. Upon arrival I found out why my grandmother wanted me to come. Her brother’s wife of 40 years had been deathly ill for the last eight or nine months. The month before Christmas she entered a coma and a week later she was brain dead. That’s not that big a deal. She was old and had a long full life. The big deal was this: Her husband (grandma’s brother) and the kids brought her home for “one last Christmas with Mom!”

In the living room is a huge Christmas tree, tons of gifts, a cheery fire and the faint smell of urine. There planted in a hospital bed right next to the tree is the wife. Over the warm sound of Christmas music is the ever-present hum, click-click-woosh-click of the heart/lung machine that is keeping her “fresh.” Her family was all around the room talking at her. It was almost like a normal conversation, but all questions were phrased in such a way that she was not required to answer.

By this point I was completely weirded out. The day progressed and the dining room table was moved into the living room so that we could eat Christmas dinner with the dead. To be fair, right before we started to eat, one of her kids changed the IV drip food bag. The new food bag had a bow and ribbons wrapped around it. I didn’t ask if the new stuff was turkey flavored.

A year later I found out that her husband was keeping “the meat fresh” just so that he could use her as a tax write off. Sick!

240. Christmas with a bang (12/06/07) - John, UK, Age 37

In 1998, my dad was a raging violent piss-head and I stayed well away for Christmas. The only saving grace of my tiny scummy bedsit was that it had a power shower, so I spent Christmas Day having lots of fun showers. I had no booze, and all I had to eat was a large bag of raisins which I threw in the air one by one and caught in my mouth. On Boxing Day I felt a weight around my waist and when I untucked my shirt, loads of raisins that had missed my mouth (and that had stuck to me) fell onto the grimy pavement. To my shame I picked them up and ate them. The following year I went home for Christmas and after a drunken row, my dad unloaded his (totally illegal in the UK) .357 at my car as I wobbled off in it with a flat tire. He was so lashed that he couldn't even hit my rusty old Golf from 15 yards away. Next year was a beauty. My smack-head brother set fire to the house by leaving a lit doobie smoldering on his bed, and my moronic father voided the house insurance by gleefully lobbing left-over fireworks into the blazing wreckage as the firemen desperately tried to put it out!

239. �The parks are nice this time of year� (12/20/06) - Jason, California, Age 40

When I was 9, in 1975, my Christmas delusions came crashing down with reality on December 23rd. My mother just found out that the breast cancer she had gotten the year before (during Christmas) had not receded, but had migrated to her fucking lungs. She would die 8 months later.

On Christmas Eve, our landlord stopped by and gave me a Lego box the size of a deck of cards. This was my only Christmas gift as we were truly ghetto. My father was across the street at the time, selling $150.00 worth of food stamps to the convenience store owner for $80.00 bucks so he could take a bus to the Los Alamitos race track and waste the rest on the four horse in the fifth.

My excitement over my box filled with 8 pieces of interconnecting plastic waned when I overheard our landlord telling my dying mom that we had 72 hours to leave as we hadn�t paid the rent for 3 months, and that we should check out the local park, as this was Southern California and the "parks were nice this time of year." My mom screamed at the landlord to get out, and when that bitch finally left, my mom started coughing up blood all over herself and me. (Nice vivid memory that still dances in my head from time to time as I drift off to sleep.)

Well, the next day, Christmas Eve, my mother left the house for St. Joseph's Hospital, never to return home, we moved out of the house, leaving behind the fake tree, and my sister in I were put into respite care (a nice way of saying foster care), never to return to our father (guess that four horse in the fifth didn't pan out for him).

238. Just another holiday alone (12/20/06) - Jessie, San Diego, Age 22

Here I am 23 years old, single and alone. I have spent my holidays alone for the past 4 years. I had to get away from a family that never got along. I had to go out and live life on my own. Hell, I did a good job at that. I married a man when I was 19. He became abusive and I never got to see my family. He kept me apart from everyone I ever loved. I left him and promised to never fall for anyone ever again.

Well, I fell for someone and told him my feelings just the other day. He turns to me and says that, Well, maybe it is time to spend time apart. I have never felt so alone. I have spent Christmas in the Gulf, then with an abusive husband, then the past two alone crying myself to sleep. I don�t have a family to go see, I don�t have a family of my own, and I don�t need a man ever again, but I hate feeling so alone. Christmas fucking sucks. It just another way to let you know how alone you are and you don�t have a family to go home to. Fuck this.

237. Another Christmas suicide (12/20/06) - Jane, Michigan, Age 49

I have very mixed feelings about Xmas. My dad was an alcoholic and most of the time when I was growing up he was actually fun and kind on Christmas Eve, when we would get our gifts and spend quality family time together. My mom loves Xmas and would go all out with decorating and baking and making ornaments with us kids. But there always was the threat of dad going ballistic and screaming and yelling and possibly beating us kids like he would do other times.

Anyway, for years he would get drunk and threaten to shoot himself, but not at Xmas. Obviously, not a good thing to do around children. He also had a fucked-up childhood (duh!) and was just passing it on. Well, when I was 35 he was wintering out west and the woman he was seeing at the time (my parents divorced when I was 23) dumped him on Dec. 24th. We thought they were going to Mexico for a week or two. Come to find out he hid his truck to make it appear to his friends/neighbors that he went to Mexico, but instead he shot himself in the head, we figure on Dec. 24th.

The bitch girlfriend never bothered to let anyone like us know he MIGHT be upset. I kept calling him leaving messages on his answering machine and never getting a call back. Finally my aunt and uncle who were wintering in a nearby state called the police and they found him dead in his house. My uncle called my mom, who then had the "pleasant" task of having to tell her kids their dad checked out of his own accord. This was on Jan. 5th.

236. Stay where you are (12/20/06) - Anonymous, Canada, Age 21

Christmas actually hasn't passed yet, it�s just a couple of weeks away. My mom recently started going through chemo for breast cancer and she's recently quit smoking. Also, she's always been known to over-worry and overreact about just about everything, so I'm sure that's had something to do with it.

Today was my last day of school and my parents were going to come and pick me up tomorrow. I'm in my final year of college and I don't think I've ever been this excited to go home before.

This morning, while finishing up my last assignment and getting started on wrapping gifts, my mom calls, which usually never happens because my long distance plan sucks ass. The first thing she says is �Would you mind if you stay there this Christmas?� I say that I do mind and ask what the hell is wrong. She just tells me it had to do with my brother and hangs up.

I knew she'd call back a few minutes later and sure enough she does. Now she's all upset and crying, saying that everything was fine until this morning. My brother (since probably before high school he's been smoking pot and who knows what else, and drinking with his buddies like every weekend) has been working hard at a co-op placement lately and making pretty good money, but apparently he's been spending it stupidly and getting into his one savings account that's meant for school. And she says that he's all �black and blue�, and I have no idea what the fuck that is about.

But yeah, basically that's what's going on, and my mom's probably using the idea of leaving me all alone for Christmas as a way to make my brother feel guilty; she's always been childish like that.

I just want to talk to my brother and see what the hell he's gotten himself into. I'm super pissed at my mom right now. I mean, like she doesn't realize that I feel like I'm being punished by being left here... ALONE for the fucking holiday, and she's talking about her and my dad kicking my brother out. But then again, she's made that threat before, to both my brother and myself.

Well, that's all from me for now. I need to start cleaning in case my parents change their minds and come to get me tomorrow.

235. Bogus Christmas bonus (12/20/06) - Bill, Philadelphia, Age 50

I was emancipated when I was sixteen (life in foster homes was never conducive to �holly jolly holidays�). I had a crummy little job that kept me fed and housed in a crummy room with a hot plate. I'd been working the night shift at a factory for nearly a year. We'd been working overtime to get the product out. As Christmas approached, we were anticipating our Christmas bonus. Some of the old timers told us that one or two weeks pay was the custom. We had been so productive, there were rumors of three weeks pay.

The excitement was great on Christmas Eve, as this was payday and bonus day. When we came to work, the management gathered all the day and night shift workers together. Everyone seemed so happy -- so this was what the holidays were about.

The announcement came across the loudspeaker. There was to be no bonus and we were all laid off. Some people cursed, most were just shocked. There were grown men crying. Then we were told not to all cash our checks at once because some of them might bounce. People were running and yelling, and the parking lot looked like the start of a NASCAR race.

I didn't get to the bank fast enough and my paycheck could not be cashed. I couldn't pay my rent and spent Christmas sleeping in my car. I lived for nearly a week in my car, not wanting to waste too much gas running the heater, and living on like 5 bucks, until I was able to cash my check.

I filled up my tank and drove to California. Figured if I was going to be poor and homeless, I didn't want to freeze to death. I lived and never went back to Philadelphia. I have had many Christmases since, some better, some worse. Every year at this time I become anxious and pray that it doesn't suck this time.

234. That wasn�t a candy cane breaking (12/20/06) - James, Georgia, Age 18

When I was 14 my mother married a fat, piggish looking man. It didn't last that long because they were both pretty violent drunks. Earlier that year he had locked my mother out of the bed room and she had kicked a hole through the door.

It got worse on Christmas that year. Once I had gone to bed on Christmas Day I heard yelling, which was nothing special, and I had learned to tune it out. But suddenly I heard a loud snapping noise and thought that they had just broken something. Well, my stepdad just storms past my room and locks himself in his. I hear my mom crying and screaming, and when I get out of bed to see, there's blood all over the floor and the bone of her leg is poking out of her skin.

I called the police and they took him in for 5 years and he's getting out next year. Fuck the criminal justice system. We lived with my grandma and my mom would constantly get drunk and fight with her, and bitch about how she can't get a job because of her �handicap.� My grandma was the only one who bought presents.

233. His last holiday bender (12/20/06) - Mark, Kentucky, Age 29

After three hours, his mother, my grandmother, went in to wake him up. She yelled for us to get in there, and we called the paramedics. He had 3 transdermal patches on (a strong painkiller) and stunk of bourbon. He was long dead, and the EMS people chastised us for not calling sooner, saying we could have saved him. They didn�t know he did this every time the family got together. Here's to a Merry Christmas.

232. Drunk driver killed mom (12/20/06) - Joel, Los Angeles, Age 35

My family celebrates Christmas on the eve, just to be different. In 1999 on the eve as we were opening gifts, I received a call telling me my mom had died in a car accident. A drunken college student hit the car that she, my sisters, and my niece were in. This girl had crossed over into the wrong lane of a two-lane highway and hit them head on.

My sisters and niece were fine but my mom took the brunt of the impact. Her ribs, lungs and heart were crushed instantly. After I got the news I couldn�t go on with opening gifts. I told my wife I had to go and left the house for the rest of the night. My kids didn't know until late the next day. I spent the New Years Eve of 2000 in a hotel 1500 miles from home preparing for my mom's funeral. I actually drank everything in the room�s minibar.

231. Stepdad�s side of the story (12/20/06) - Shane, Boston, Age 51

About 17 years ago I married a woman I loved very much but she had a son from a previous marriage. We didn't get along too well. He was the kind of person who would be an asshole just to get a rise out of you.

For a while we all did OK, then last fall she developed a crack habit. When Christmas rolled around I was enjoying a nice bottle of '86 Bordeaux to celebrate and she walked up behind me and hit me with a plate of water crackers. In a daze, I started to fight back and hit her son on accident. She fell onto our glass coffee table and cut her eyes so badly she's nearly blind now.

She pressed charges and her shithead son testified that I stabbed her eyes out with a goddamned corkscrew. They believed him and are taking 17 years of my life. I've never been a violent person, but if I ever get out of here I am going to take his eyes and make him eat them.

230. Comatose at Christmas (12/20/06) - Anonymous, U.S., Age 27

My mother was in a car wreck about a week before Christmas and ended up in a coma. She had lost control of the car, and to this day, nobody knows why.

Right before Christmas, a MRI revealed severe, irreversible brain stem trauma, and we were asked to make a decision. Christmas morning, I received a phone call from the hospital informing me that my mother had passed away.

Fuck Christmas.

229. Her dad went ballistic (12/20/06) - Louis, France, Age 32

It was my girlfriend's dad who gave Christmas that special meaning for years to come. We lived together in Albany in those days, now eleven years ago. We were young, too young maybe, and her parents always gave us grief over our shacking up.

For two years her parents refused to see her, even at Christmas, which seriously gnawed at her emotionally. That year she decided not to await their approval, and went home two days before Christmas, all the way to Michigan. She called me upon arrival at the airport to tell me she was fine. The next phone call I received came Christmas morning, and it wasn't her. Instead I got a very brief explanation by this a-hole officer I'd better take the first possible flight over there.

Until I arrived I really didn't know anything other than that something had gone sour between her and her parents. Once there I learned soon enough alright. There had been a fight, and the only way dad had seen fit to end it was by loading up his shotgun and shooting his own blood smack in the face, killing her on the spot, after which he apparently thought he had better leave no witnesses. In his rage he shot her brother and her mom as well.

In eight to twelve years he'll be a free man again, and I am trying really hard still not to organize a �welcome back� party he'll never forget. He's very God-loving now they say, and I believe that, just as I believe Old Kringle really lives on the North Pole. Thanks a lot for all my miserable holidays ever since, you monster.

228. Dead dad, stingy stepmother (12/20/06) - Sunshine, U.S., Age 27

I absolutely hate Christmas -- this year more than most, to be precise. My father just passed away recently and unexpectedly from some rare blood infection that he never knew he had. Come to find out afterwards they could have saved him, but they left him lying in an ER room wasting away. I think it was because he used to be an alcoholic, and they just thought it was because he had relapsed. He had just turned 47.

To top that off, he said that when he died my sister and I would be left with a large amount of money. He said we would never have to worry about money again. Well, needless to say, I totally got screwed. My stepmother has the right to distribute his money and belongings the way she pleases. Here she is sitting on A LOT of money and all of my fathers stuff, while I sit here trying to figure out a way to get my children presents for Christmas. I told her of my situation, and she won�t help. GO FUCKING FIGURE! My husband and I can�t afford Christmas presents for our 3 children.

We can�t get any help, not even from the Salvation Army. My husband makes 24 cents more than the cut off. This Christmas is really gonna suck, especially if we have to tell our children, whose ages range from 2 to 8 that there is no such thing as Santa. It�s so unfortunate that many kids will go without Christmas presents, including mine. In the words of my late father, "BAH FUCKING HUMBUG!"

227. Visions of parasites danced in her head (12/20/06) - Jessica, Bellevue, WA, Age 28

About two weeks before Christmas my fucked-up mom decided that she saw parasites throughout her home. They were supposedly two inches long and could survive on the dishes through the dishwasher. These parasites were present only because she found out that her husband (Number 3) had once had sex with an Asian girl 10 years prior and that these were a result of that. She decided that they were eventually going to kill her so she moved my little sister and herself to a very expensive hotel and made her husband "disinfect" the entire house with bleach...every day for 5 days.

So Christmas Day, my husband and I had to celebrate Christmas at the hotel. I should mention that I was 8 months pregnant, and throughout my entire life my mom had to be the center of attention, good or bad. She couldn't deal with the fact that I was receiving attention, so that's why the parasites were invented.

After opening the crappy presents, we went to the main floor of the hotel to eat the "free" dinner that was being offered. After all of us had filled our plates from the buffet, we found out that this had been a private dinner, paid for by someone else and we were crashing it. Thankfully they allowed us to keep the food, but we were forced to sit on the opposite end of the lobby, away from the other guests, and eat our dinner while people gave us nasty looks.

Great way to spend a Christmas? Sober and pregnant, with a crazy mom with parasites, a man that smelled of bleach, and stealing food. That would explain why I've never had a Christmas with her again. And I haven't spoken to her in 3 years. I heard she's been whoring herself to buy crack. I'm waiting for the day she dies.

226. Shipped off to military school (12/20/06) - Jeff, Alabama, Age 15

Just yesterday my parents surprised me with a bus ticket to Camphill, Alabama. They made me pack all of my stuff because I was going for all of Christmas break. Once I got there 2 cops escorted me to a place called Lyman Ward Military Academy, and my parents called and said I will be here for 3 years. All I have to say is Merry fucking Christmas, bitch. When I get out of here I will be 18 and I will go back home just to sock my dad in the face.

225. The Christmas curse (12/20/06) - Thomas, Pennsylvania, Age 27

While I know that Christmas is supposed to be a joyous time of the year. I am forever trapped in Christmas Hell! For the past 6 years right around Thanksgiving I start to dread Christmas because I know the inevitable is about to happen. It seems that every year anywhere from the week before Christmas to New Years I have a dark cloud hanging over my head when it comes to family and especially women. You see, for the past 6 years I have been dumped or been arguing with 5 different women (only 5 because, although we were arguing last Christmas, my ex-fianc�e did not break up with me until 3 days ago.)

The first year it was a total shock. That women ran off on a drug binge and called me months later saying she is pregnant and it wasn't mine. The following year it was a different woman but a similar result -- only this one broke up with me on Christmas Eve, and this pattern continues to this day.

My family is never any help. The first words out of there mouths are "Where's (insert new female name here every year)," and when I tell them, they just tell me that maybe she didn't like the way I did this or that instead of offering any consolation.

So my new motto is, Happy Birthday Jesus, but F@#K Christmas.

224. Come to the principal�s office (12/20/06) - Anonymous, West Virginia, Age 16

When I was in 8th grade, I was at school on the last day before Christmas break. I got a call to come to the office; I would be leaving. I wasn't sure what was going on. When I got to the office my dad was standing there signing the papers for me to leave school. I left with him and we drove all the way to Martinsburg for my grandfather's funeral. Apparently he had died of cancer the night before but no one thought it would be important to tell his only grandson.

While I was there, I called my girlfriend and told her I was out of town and that my grandfather had died. Rather than apologizing, she just went into this rant about how she had gotten a new dress for the fucking Christmas Dance and now she had no one to go with. On top of it all, my girlfriend dumped me when I got home and made up a bunch of shit to get her friends mad at me.

223. Suburban denial (12/20/06) - Liz, California, Age 16

Well, I�m just a little suburban brat on lots of antidepressants, but I still hate Christmas. See, for my entire life it had been tradition to open presents and then go spend the rest of Christmas Day at my grandma�s with the rest of my extended family. Then a couple of years ago, when my family was just about to leave to go over there, we get a call.

Apparently, my aunt and cousins had arrived first, and rang the doorbell repeatedly, but nothing happened. So they had my littlest cousin (the only one who could fit through the window) climb in and look for grandma. She found grandma on the bathroom floor, passed out. Apparently she'd had a stroke a couple days ago. That put a damper on things.

Grandma held on a couple days, but ended up dying right after New Years. Every Christmas since, my dad's tried hard to pretend to be happy, but hasn't quite succeeded. At the same time, my mom tries to get all religious, even though I�ve been atheist ever since I left catholic school, so we end up fighting about Jesus or something ridiculous while my dad mopes in a corner. We end up all eating lots of chocolate and going into denial. Merry fucking Christmas.

222. Not the Brady Bunch (12/20/06) - Lauren, Long Island, Age 18

I've never really gotten along with my folks. We used to spend Christmas in upstate NY with my mother's family in a picturesque farm house. Unfortunately, almost ten years ago they moved to a smaller house that was not suitable for entertaining (or so I�m told). Instead, we spend Christmas at my dad's sister's house. She and her husband constantly bicker while their hyperactive daughter abuses whichever living creature she happens to find herself closest to. My dad's parents are the types who are obsessed with the fact that they're old and dying. My little sister is an obnoxious, sometimes violent pot head. My parents are convinced that I am a cynical bitchy Scrooge because I have never enjoyed these gatherings.

Last year I spent Christmas with my boyfriend and his family. It was wonderful; his family is like the Brady Bunch compared to mine, and made me feel welcomed by buying me multiple gifts and allowing me to participate in eating large amounts of pie. Unfortunately, said boyfriend recently converted to the Church of Scumbag and cheated on me. So this Christmas will be spent sitting in my aunt's living room with my iPod, drowning out the yelling like the past ten I have witnessed, except this year there will be the added bonus of heartache when I remember how great last year was.

221. Vindictive ex-wife (12/20/06) - Anonymous, North Carolina, Age 25

This was to be a perfect Christmas. My husband was to get his kids from his ex-wife and we were to be going to grandma's house. Well, the little jealous ex-wife decides to be deceitful because my husband was laid off and her $800-a-month child support stopped coming in, so she tried to put us both in jail for Christmas on falsified charges. The jail part didn�t work for her, but we didn�t get to visit the kids because all our money we had saved up from my own child support went to pay an attorney fee. Well, MERRY FUCKIN CHRISTMAS BITCH!!!! But remember those kids will always remember and know the truth.

220. Stares and whispers (12/20/06) - Scotty, Tennessee, Age 19

It's been a year since I've been home. Last Christmas I found out that the reason why our recently dead grandmother never liked me was because my abusive and vindictive stepmother had been telling our whole family that I had a drug problem and was whoring around throughout my teens. After a lot of thinking, I told my dad (who bawled) about her lying. He later confronted her, but that naturally doesn't cleanse my reputation.

After reluctantly coming back for Xmas this year, I've just been trying to endure my stepmother's family's conservative born-again Christian righteousness. My stepmother also has been sickeningly sweet to me around my father. The judgmental stares and whispers about my tattoos and piercing are horrible, and I've been trying not to scream. They also like to sit around and chat about how my dysfunction probably stems from my secular mother who happens to be a lesbian.

Last week my mother, who I haven't heard from in a couple of months, called to tell me she had been admitted to a psych ward. She said she didn't want to disturb my finals (and yet right before Xmas was more appropriate). My father already knew, but wanted her to tell me. So now I'm getting constant looks of pity as well, which by the end of the week I'll be getting from this whole bunch of ignorant hicks.

My only relief is knowing that my children will never fucking experience holidays like this, ever.

219. Makes a lump of coal sound good (12/20/06) - Michael, California, Age 40

My father was a hardcore alcoholic. He worked, but beat the hell out of my brother and me very often. When he saw us being too happy about Christmas coming, he would tell us we only had the "spirit of receiving" gifts. Several years he got us all excited about a big Christmas, then no gifts were there on Xmas morning. It was horribly cruel.

Instead of a happy day, he gave us a speech about working and contributing, and then we did chores. My most vivid memory is getting up one morning when I was about seven: no gifts, usual lecture, and my father vomited while screaming at us. It was just all too much and I ran to my room. He followed and beat me so badly that I have nerve damage in my left arm and it hurts about half the time, even now.

218. Serve �em on a plate (12/14/06) - Greg, Boston, Age 30

When I was 13 my parents got divorced and my mom married another man. I always thought my stepdad was an okay guy. I was always pretty sure he never cared if I lived or died, and the feeling was mutual, so long as he treated my mom right. That he did, but sometime before last Christmas he started drinking heavily for some unknown reason, and he's a mean drunk.

Last year at Christmas, he was drinking wine out of the bottle, some really cheap wine that smelled bad. My mom was bringing him a plate of snacks and she must have spilled something on him, because he started screaming incoherently and leaped to his feet.

The next thing we know, he's on top of her, screaming and spitting. His face was all red, and all I could hear were words like "whore" and "bitch." Before we could do anything, he snatched up the corkscrew and put both my mom's eyes out.

Long story short, if he behaves himself he will be out of prison in 17 years. I had to testify in court. My mom can sometimes tell if the lights are on, but most of the time she's 100% blind in both eyes. She gets strong painkillers because she tells the doctor her eyes hurt, but she told me she really takes the painkillers for her emotional pain. Her left eye is all scar tissue because the doctors removed the eyeball, but the right eye is this cloudy mess that looks like a giant cataract.

When that bastard gets out of prison, I am going to take his eyes and make him eat them.

217. Holiday ham fatality (12/14/06) - Jon, Chicago, Age 43

When I was twelve years old, my grandfather choked to death on a piece of ham at our family's Christmas dinner. My dad unsuccessfully tried to dislodge the meat from Grandpa's throat with his fingers, then a spoon, but by the time the paramedics arrived, Grandpa was dead. My entire family was running around the house, screaming and crying, and my grandmother fainted. (We momentarily thought she had died, too.) Merry Christmas, indeed.

216. Family is everything (12/14/06) - Anonymous, Beloit, Age 16

I love my family very much -- my dad, who works all the time; my sister, who emptied out all of our bank accounts for her daughter and drug addict husband; my other sister who is the coolest one out of all except she also takes everyone�s money; my little brother who�s a thief (who could have guessed?) and his psycho little girlfriend who thinks she owns everything, EVEN ME! And of course, my drunken mother. This Christmas my dad is in the hospital for chronic asthma, heart attack, and internal bleeding, and she is sitting at home getting smashed. When I�m not working full-time or in school, I am at home taking care of her. I had to pay for my whole family�s Christmas just so we could have one because my mom spent what little money we had on beer. Plus I have to pay the hospital bills. So all you guys here who wanna bitch about your families -- I would rather have no house, no Christmas, no money, than have no family. At least everyone is okay.

215. Orphaned on Xmas (12/14/06) - Jess, California, Age 17

Two Christmases ago my parents went to pick up my grandparents from some friends, and some drunk idiot caused a car crash, which they all died in. Dad was actually in a coma for a bit, but they turned the machines off on January 3rd. Everyone else died on impact. Mom was beheaded by a piece of metal flying through the windscreen. Me and my little bro now live with my Dad�s younger sister. We only ever see her a couple of times a month, and she has a drinking problem. In the beginning of next year, me and my brother inherit everything that was my parents�, so we're gonna buy a mansion in the hills, never speak to our aunt again, and have seriously cool Christmas. Until then, they suck. Our aunt even forgets the anniversary of her brother and her parents� death, for God�s sake.

214. Alone with a frozen dinner (12/14/06) - Jorge, Phoenix, Age 31

Just cracked open beer number 4 to celebrate (yeah right) the start of my Xmas holiday. Getting ready to spend the next week in a constant state of alcoholic stupor, which for the last 10 years of so has been the only thing that gets me through this fucking season.

Christmas was miserable growing up. Every year Dad would bitch the entire month of December how much money it was costing him, and how we were just ingrates who didn't appreciate shit anyway. Mom, to overcompensate, would go into this totally fake, "Don't you just LOOOOVE the holidays!" Xmas-song-singing psycho attitude. If we didn't respond, she'd start screaming like a harpy about how she wished we'd never been born.

The eve of Xmas was usually a circus; the old man would usually spend as much time as he could at work, then stop off at the bar to get liquored up. Then, they'd herd me and my sister into the living room to open our �presents,� which usually were just crap. If we didn�t show the *appropriate* amount of gratitude, dad would get pissed at us for being brats, and drag one or both of us back to their bedroom for a beating with his leather belt. We'd wind up finishing Xmas eve banished to our rooms with a burning ass. My last Xmas before I left home at 16 I spent locked in my bedroom; I refused to come out, and told my bitch mother to just take all my fucking presents back.

Today, things haven't gotten much better. After spending six or seven Xmas holidays alone with a frozen dinner, I finally got married. Unfortunately, I've brought my hatred for Xmas into my marriage. After the first couple of Xmases I spent with my wife (where I just got drunk and angry as usual), she decided that she would no longer spend the holidays with me. Now, our lovely family tradition is that around Dec 21st, she packs her shit and goes to her family's house out of state and leaves me totally alone. I wake up alone on Xmas morning and no one calls me. Not to mention, she usually spends a TON of cash buying shit for herself and her family, but not a fucking thing for me. The highlight of my Xmas day is a frozen dinner, which half the time I wind up puking because I'm so drunk by the end of the day.

Xmas fucking sucks.

213. Thanks for the Xmas misery, Dad (12/14/06) - Glenn, Idaho, Age 40

Well, Christmastime is here again. My Dad�s birthday is on Christmas Eve. When I was 5 years old my Dad came home drunk on Christmas eve. That next Jun of 1971 that bastard took a .22 and killed himself three days before my 6th birthday. So for the past 35 years, Christmases have sucked and so have my birthdays. So thanks Dad for all the crappy Christmas' since 1971. I ended up being raised on welfare and had the worst Christmases ever since. Now I�m 40 years old and on disability and another El Sucko Christmas is on its way. Happy birthday Dad -- you asshole -- and Merry F'ing Christmas.

212. Corpse in the trunk (12/14/06) - Flavious, U.S., Age 39

Ah, Christ. Well here it is then isn't it? A lovely fuckin' Christmas for all. It's not the fact Great Aunt Bertha died � it.s the fact she almost wouldn't fit in the trunk, except we had some of those bungee tie-down cords. She smelled pretty bad too. She must have been dead for 12 hours or so when my wife and I found her face down on the kitchen tiles, when we went to pick her up for Christmas Eve dinner 2004. I didn't want to just leave her there. She smelled too rank to put her in the inside of the car, so we put her back in the trunk and tied it shut with the bungees and headed for the county hospital.

One of the roads to the hospital has cracked pavement. We went over a bump and one of her shoes flew off, and hit a parked police car on the side of the road, so then the cop woke up I guess, or dropped his donut and pulled us over. He asks if we are OK, and where we are going and NEVER NOTICES THE CORPSE in the trunk. What a dipshit. So one speeding ticket later we are off, Aunt Bertha's body still in the trunk.

We show up at the hospital and I go to unload the body and tell my wife to go inside and tell someone. That was when I noticed the children's choir on the front steps of the ER, which stopped in mid-song and then began to cry and scream as I walked with the 350+ pound dead body of my Great Aunt Bertha, dragging it past the kiddies through the ER doors. Ho Ho Ho. Jesus...let�s hope this year is a brighter one.

211. Can�t deal � I�m turning Muslim (12/14/06) - Chris, Boston, Age 23

Last Christmas my car was broken into on Christmas Eve while I was in the mall shopping for my girlfriend. They took the presents I got for her. It wasn't that bad, only around $100 in presents lost.

This year I decided to keep my presents at my best friend�s house until I had time when my girl wasn't home to bring them home and wrap them. I hid them behind his futon in his room thinking to myself they would be safe. Last night I went to his apartment to pick them up and guess what? They were fucking gone. My friend let some shitbrick crackhead in the house and the mothe fucker took my shit.

So two years in a row my girlfriend�s Christmas presents were stolen. When I called her to tell her, I swear she thought I was saying that just to get out of buying her anything. I'm turning Muslim. I can't deal with this Christmas crap anymore.

210. Christmas knife fight (12/14/06) - Joe, Tokyo, Age 23

Probably the worst Christmas of all time for me was Christmas '01. I was home for the holidays, and I got into an argument with my mother. We started yelling, and she suddenly started screaming bloody murder and saying that I had punched her (I was standing 10 feet away at the time).

Well, that didn't go over too well with my father, who was on the crapper in the guest bathroom. He came running out, pulling his pants up as he went, and chased me into the kitchen. Given that the old man has half a foot and at least 75 pounds on me, I did the only thing I could think to do: I grabbed a knife and told him to stay the fuck away from me.

Long story short, my dad and I were involved in a Christmas knife fight, and wound up in the emergency room getting stitched up (no major injuries, 'cause Dad's a pussy and my mother threatened to disown me if I hurt him). We told the doctors that we'd both tripped while carrying sharp objects. I don't think they believed us, because we got a visit from a social worker on New Year's Day, but when we told her the truth, she bitched at us for lying and wasting her time.

The real kicker is how my mom LOVES to tell this story. I would think she'd be ashamed, but she isn't. She *laughs* about how my father came racing out of the bathroom with his pants around his knees. Oh, she *says* she feels guilty for causing the fiasco, but her smug expression says otherwise.

209. Couch potato boyfriend (12/14/06) - Anonymous, Silicon Valley

I am with a guy who won't work. Admittedly, he's been depressed. I want to break up with him, but I also care about him. Prior to Christmas, he swore he would send out some resumes. He hasn't worked on any, much less sent one out. Just mopes around the house, won't go to counseling, bitches at my kids. If they gave a salary for doing crossword puzzles and Sodoku all day, he would be a millionaire. Our Christmas sucks this year, and last year sucked, too, for the same reason; I have a big depressed kid around the house instead of a partner. I want him to get help, but he thinks nothing is wrong with him. I've decided to just go on with my life, with or without him. My kids deserve better.

208. Fudge you, Mom (12/14/06) - Danielle, Las Vegas, Age 25

My story is pretty mild compared to some of the others on here, but my little drama still made me feel crappy about the holidays. I moved from Wisconsin to Nevada to pursue a new job and have some fun. Needless to say, after starting my new job there was no way I was going to be able to make it home for Christmas this year (or any other holiday). It would be the first Christmas I would ever miss. Anyway, I called my mom up a few days before Christmas to see how things were going. Instead of a nice cheery hello, she asked me to call her back because I interrupted her making fudge (ummm ok?!!)...and went on and on about how she never gets time to herself.

I know this might sound harmless, but she said it really snotty and mean as if I just violated some federal law. So I called her back about a half hour later and I basically had to force the conversation. I felt like total crap. Here I am, my first Christmas away from home, first time living out of state. I call home hoping for some comfort because I'm so homesick, only to have my mom flip out on me because I interrupted her fudge making. I had a good cry after that conversation. Thanks mom and happy holidays.

207. Mom stole the car (12/14/06) - Renee, Rhode Island, Age 22

Holidays at my dysfunctional house are never normal. Christmas Eve started out fine. We went to my grandparents�, then I hear my mom and grandfather fighting as usual. Of course it's over money. She wanted her Christmas money that night because the pathetic mental case had plans later that night to go out. She starts stomping around, cursing and banging things like a 10-year-old. God forbid she stays in on Xmas Eve. I decided to leave there and took my keys and went outside to get in the car. She ran after me and literally tackled me to the ground screaming that she had a date and to give her the car keys. Neighbors came out, my grandfather came out screaming trying to break it up, then my bag broke with all my things getting tossed all over the sidewalk. We ran inside where the fight got worse. My grandfather choked me, saying to get out of his house and my mother ran out and sped away in the car and the cops were called. Oh, I have to add that my grandmother, who is sick, was witness to all this in the house.

206. Panties in a bunch (12/14/06) - Anonymous, Buffalo, NY, Age 30

I have been once again been told that I single-handedly have ruined this "festive" time of year by my ungrateful girlfriend. Weeks prior to this "magical season" I heard countless complaints of how our love life was taking a nose dive due to our hectic schedules. So in an effort to show my appreciation to her I ordered her some lingerie. I went to the trouble to have her tell me her exact measurements and to find something sexy but not too outrageous. Additionally, she told me that she had "something special" in mind for me after dinner with her family, involving some lingerie she ordered and a hot tub.

So after getting out of another annoying dinner, we came home. I gave her the gifts and she went in to the bathroom to try them on and to put on her surprise for me. Of course, since it�s fucking Christmas, there had to be a fucking problem ONCE AGAIN.

She came out the bathroom all mopey. Stupid me asked what the problem was. She told me that my gifts for her were too small and that I obviously bought them to show her how she needs to lose weight. Stupid me pointed out that the lingerie was bought based on the sizes she told me. This went over like a fart in church. As an added bonus she decided that she felt unsexy and of course backed out on her promise for any type of romance. This naturally was followed by her sacking out on the couch and eating a HUGE piece of peanut butter chocolate pie. (That should help her fit into the lingerie!!!) Now she's asleep in front of the TV. HO HO HO MY FUCKING ASS! Oh well, time for net porn, AGAIN!!!! Santa can go fuck himself...

205. Jingle jerks (12/14/06) - Wendy, California, Age 39

My family goes all out for Christmas. We shop like crazy, trying to get the perfect gift for everyone. Our house is lit up, the tree is worthy of a magazine cover, and my sister, the caterer, cooks up a storm. Tonight, however was so disappointing. My stepbrother shows up with his family, and I notice he has a terrible cold/flu. Being as our mother is elderly, and so is her husband, I was very put off that he hadn't let us know he was sick, and perhaps stayed home. He didn't even sound like himself. He pretended there was nothing wrong with showing up for an elaborate Christmas dinner sick, and that exposing two elderly grandparents to his lousy virus was just fine.

Things escalated when he licked his germy fingers and cut back in the buffet line for seconds, when I hadn't eaten yet, nor had his wife. When I said something, he proceeded to yell, "FUCK YOU, FUCK YOU, FUCK YOU, FUCK YOU!" It was totally inappropriate, and his wife took the two little kids outside. I no longer wanted to eat, and could not be in the same room with him. His wife was crying, and the kids were confused. We had to make up for the family's sake.

Next, we were opening gifts, and this wonderful Rolex replica that I had been trying to procure for months was finally opened by my stepdad. (I had paid plenty for it, and even a jeweler could not tell it wasn't authentic.) My sister's stupid boyfriend blurted out, "LEMME SEE IT! IT'S NOT REAL. IT DOESN'T EVEN FEEL REAL. IT'S A CHEAP CHINESE FAKE! HA HA HA!" I was mortified. We were all embarrassed, and I mouthed to my sister to stop him. It was too late. When confronted about blurting out, and ruining the moment, the guy starts screaming like a little baby, and denies anything except that he "Just said it wasn't real." Of course, we'd all heard him practically calling my gift a piece of shit. I'd also bought my Mom one, and it was diminished by his outburst. Next year, I'd like to go to Vegas for Christmas.

204. Santa can go to hell (12/14/06) - Kate, Michigan, Age 13

Where should I start? When I was seven years old, in November 2000, my parents started to fight. My mom decided a week before Christmas to get a divorce. She decided to keep it a secret till Christmas. What a bitch.

Three years later, two days before Christmas, my Grandma Goldie, Grandma Bobbie, and my stepmom and my real mom decide to kick me out of there houses. All of them decided to take pity upon me. They all let me back in the house.

Last year, the day before Thanksgiving there was a terrible storm and my Uncle Vince got into a car accident and died immediately. My mom ended up in the hospital because she was talking about killing herself. Then my great grandma Katrina (yes the name of the hurricane) died a week after. Then my next door neighbor�s husband decides to kill himself a week before Christmas all because of him finding out he had cancer. I find out my boyfriend is screwing another girl! After all that I decide to take him back because his mom died.

My grandpa was diagnosed with cancer the day before Christmas, which is the birthday of my uncle that had died. My mom decided to tell me to get the fuck out of her house and blamed it on my uncle�s birthday (when she said sorry and let me back in her house).

I loved that I have to work, on fucking Christmas Eve and Christmas, so I can get a cell phone. I don't even believe in the Christmas miracles anymore because there is no fucking Christmas Miracle for me anymore. So just let fucking Santa Claus die and get born in HELL!!


203. Let down by friends and family (12/14/06) - Eric, New York, Age 16

Every Christmas ever since I moved to New York has sucked. Last Christmas was horrible. It all starts with rumors going around at the beginning of the school year (this is high school) saying that my best friend was pregnant. I took her aside and asked her and she told me in confidence "no". I believed her because she is the only person in my life I have ever trusted. After months of her lying and hiding it from me, I come to find out it was true. I was disgusted. She was the only person ever I could trust. A few days later (December 24), I find out that she actually had the baby. It gave me the worst feeling I had ever gotten. I felt used, alone, pushed aside. I actually tried to kill myself because I had nobody else in my life that cared about me like she did.

It comes Christmas day and I hadn�t gotten any sleep because I was up all night crying my eyes out. I get a phone call at 9:00 telling me that my good friend in Philly died during the night in a fire. If that wasn�t bad enough, I go downstairs to open presents with my depressing family. My mom hates herself and was popping ant-depressants and tranquilizers all morning. My dad was yelling because he is the angriest person in the world. And my sister is an uptight b*tch and tells me nothing but insults.

I am way too depressed by this point to open any gifts and my dad gets pissed and calls me a faggot, throws a glass at me and kicks me in the side. My mom just sits there, pill bottle in hand. As I open all of my gifts, I come to realize that my parents only spent about 50 bucks on me (not that I actually care about getting presents, but it�s the principle). They couldn�t afford it because my mom spends all her money on designer clothes, cosmetic surgery, and on her secret affair with some man from work that I caught her in. My dad spends all his money on my mom�s gifts (mostly because he probably wants to persuade her to hold off filing divorce papers). I go to Philly the day after and my crazy grandmother shoved me in her car and left me off at a teenage detention center to rot because she hates that I don�t get along with her son. My oldest sister fortunately had enough heart to pick me up.

202. Stocking stuffer (12/14/06) - Morgan, U.S., Age 20

Each year keeps getting shittier. Last year, my boyfriend wanted to get me the prefect, I took him to the mall and dropped hints. You know � �That�s nice.� �I really would like that for Christmas.� I THOUGHT IT WAS OBVIOUS!!! So, christmas rolls around and he starting gloating about some present he got me and how fabulous it was, blah blah blah...really creating some hype.

Now we get to the presents. I give my presents and I start opening his and I get really excited because whatever he got me was in this pretty velvet bag. I reach down into the bag and I feel what I got and grab it out, and....IT�S A GLASS DILDO!!! Not only that � it�s double-sided! His eyes light up when he tells me all about it -- how I can boil it to heat it up and clean it in the dishwasher. To make this story short -- I got off all the time, he didn't!

201. Felled by flatulence (12/14/06) - Brandi, Virginia, Age 17

At Christmas Eve dinner with my boyfriend's family and three of their close friends, my boyfriend's stepfather passed out on the kitchen floor. We'd thought he'd had a stroke or heart attack, and when they examined him at the emergency room, they told us that it was a gaseous buildup in his intestines. He'd held in his gas throughout the dinner, and when he was walking to the bathroom it overwhelmed him. The next day everyone was still traumatized by the event.

200. The Christmas �ho� (12/14/06) - Anonymous, West Virginia, Age 30

My worst Xmas was when I was 14. I had been a latch-key kid for a few years (and was really starting to develope some serious personality disorders due to it), and on Xmas Eve, the few hours that my mom was going to be home, she took me shopping with my boyfriend. Upon returning home (and after mom left) my boyfriend sweet talked me into having sex (my first time, but not his). Well, mom came home early and caught us in the act and took my boyfriend home and yelled at his parents, who told the entire town over the next few days. By the time school was back in after the holiday vacation, I was greeted by the phrase "Ho, Ho, Ho" which stuck for many years. I ended up pregnant but had a miscarriage due to a disease he gave me, which has prevented me from ever having children.

199. Holiday pink slip (12/14/06) - Lee, Pennsylvania, Age 37

Two days before Christmas last year (2005), my husband lost his job of 10 years. His boss handed him his termination letter and an envelope that said "Seasons Greetings" with his $50 Christmas bonus inside at the same time. Umm, thanks? He takes $1500/month injectable medication to be able to walk, and now we have no health insurance. Merry Fucking Christmas.

198. Obsessive depressive holidays (12/14/06) - John Doe, U.S., Age 22

I am OCD. Christmas consists of 24/7 Obsessive Compulsing. Then when Christmas Day is over my mood disorder sets in and the rest of the 12 days are spent with manic episodes. My dread of the holidays usually starts around Memorial Day and my post-Christmas depression ends around March 1. That gives me 2 months out of the year to enjoy -- the rest I�m in Christmas-Thanksgiving Depression or Obsession.

197. Deck the halls and deadbolt the doors (12/14/06) - Mary, New Haven, CT, Age 33

The Christmas when I was 12 years old was the scariest, most depressing Christmas ever. My older sister, who suffered from an unidentified psychiatric illness (later diagnosed as bipolar disorder), would erratically destroy things, tear the house up, throw people around (push them down stairs, break tables over their heads), and the like. The holidays seemed to bring out the worst in her behavior. My mother, who loved to decorate our home with a real pine Christmas tree and plenty of decorations came home a few days before the big day and found the tree completely destroyed - every glass ornament shattered, sentimental items smashed, presents unwrapped and broken, deliberately. Everything was just demolished.

Her illness had gotten so bad, we were prisoners in our own home. My parents were not emotionally or intellectually able to deal with this issue. I remember Christmas that year staying in my room with the door deadbolted on the inside to feel safe. When I was sure my sister had left the house, I snuck downstairs to my parents� room, where they were deadbolted in, too. When she'd left, she had taken most of the special foods my mom had bought for the holiday. I sat in my parents� room and we lit a candle and sat silently by the nativity set up on their bureau. My mother cried the whole time. That was my most miserable Christmas experience.

196. Cuckholded on Christmas (12/14/06) - Anonymous, U.S., Age 24

A few days before Christmas of 2003, my girlfriend told me she had been cheating on me for weeks and that she didn't want to be together anymore. She was my first love. It turns out she was cheating on me with a guy that I worked with. Christmas rolls around and he decides to skip work so that the two of them can be together for Christmas. My work called me to replace him, so I had to miss Christmas with my family to go fill in for a guy who was seeing my ex. While I was gone, my family ate Christmas dinner and opened all their gifts (including mine) and then went to bed. When I got off work, everybody was asleep, so I sat in a dark corner all night, hating myself and wishing I had her back.

195. Boys and their toys (12/14/06) - John, New York, Age 47

Christmas of 2005 was starting out to be one of the best in recent years since my father died. I had just gotten a job, I decorated my ass off, had all the culinary requirements, bought and wrapped all the presents and put them under the tree I�d put up. Everything was set until my older idiot brother Freddie, who was 52 at the time, had bought himself a radio-controlled helicopter! He was trying to get the piece of shit to work all day and was getting nastier by the second when his efforts were fruitless. I stayed out in the kitchen and listened to the CDs I had bought myself and decided to accelerate my intake of juiced-up eggnog to drown out my brother�s incessant whining.

The shit hit the fan when I realized I couldn�t cook because I was bombed to the max, so I went to lie down and Freddie yells, "You mean we�re not eating?!! " I retorted, �You fucking jerk, you let a kid�s toy drive me to drink myself stupid and now you�re demanding chow, especially since I did all the work to make this a decent Christmas!�

All hell broke loose, musical instruments were smashed, as my brother�s a retard musician who had a small amplifier with his microphone guitar set up to play Christmas tunes. It was like the aftermath of a Who concert. Freddie then runs to his room and pulls a switchblade on me! A Who concert meets Westside Story.

This Christmas I�m going to my wacko friend�s house to smoke dope, and let the other "dope" play with some other shit toy that don�t work.

194. Christmas leave denied (12/14/06) - Joe, Korea, Age 19

Christmas last year was a real winner. My leave authorization (to go home and spend the first Christmas with my family in YEARS) was revoked at the last minute, and I was given orders for a training TDY that ran over the Christmas holiday. I was heartbroken, to say the least.

When I asked why I was being sent on a short-notice TDY, my first sergeant said "It's a mandatory training class for the position you'll be filling in Iraq."

Turns out, the guy who was SUPPOSED to go had attempted suicide, and was thus disqualified from deployment. I got tapped to replace the wrist-slashing pussy in the desert. Nice. Hey, asshole, if you *really* wanna commit suicide, why don't you go suck-start your M16? I know you got one!

The truly heinous kick in the ass? Suicide boy got sent home to his family for Christmas "for medical reasons," that whiny little bitch.

193. Mom leaves, grandma dies (12/14/06) - Jack, Chicago, Age 36

Two years ago was my worst Christmas Eve. After our kids went to sleep, my wife and I spent two hours putting their toys together. When we were done she told me she was leaving me for her lesbian lover. And she would be spending Christmas Day with her, so I had to tell my kids why Mom wasn't there on Christmas morning.

So, after she packed her bags and left, I called my Mom and asked if the kids could stay with them for Christmas. After dropping them off, I went home and drank a lot. While playing with her grandkids, my Mom had a heart attack. She dropped dead and my children called 911.

Since I didn't answer the phone (because I was passed out), my kids spent Christmas Day at the police station. So now after putting my Mom into the ground, my soon to be ex-wife and her �partner� are suing me for custody. Now I'm spending all my money on lawyers so that carpet-munching bitch doesn't raise them. And I have almost no cash to buy then Christmas gifts. So I told them, �This year, Christmas is cancelled!� No tree, no presents, or Christmas dinner. And now they hate me, but it's for their own good.

192. Dead on the side of the road (12/14/06) - Connie, California, Age 49

December 16, 2005, I was trimming the Christmas tree after waking up with a miserable flu. My husband let the dog out and I didn't worry about her because she always came home. Well, that night she didn't. We ate dinner and went out to search for her. She was dead along the side of the road. I loved that dog like a sister. I was so close to her and it still hurts to this day. I really miss her so much. Now Christmas and everything about it just sucks!

191. Cleaning up Dad�s mess (12/14/06) - Martin, Idaho, Age 37

My rotten dad picked 8 days before Christmas to die. We hadn't talked in 6 years. While my mom was taking care of funeral arrangements (they divorced when I was 7), my older sister made me go with her and clean out his apartment because his douchebag landlord wanted to rent it out before the year ended.

While she was cleaning up the kitchen, I went into his bedroom and discovered a whole bunch of very sticky porno mags and unwashed clothes. Then I found a photo album of myself and my older brother and sister. He'd taken a coal and burned every picture of me out of them. I guess he hated me as much as I hated him. Before my sister could see them I tossed them all into a garbage bag and said, �Nothing but crap.� What was the point? So when all was said and done, I didn't go to the service, and didn't show up for Christmas celebration. I hate Christmas and will never take part in it again.

190. She had me by the balls (12/21/05) - Anonymous, US, Age 40

My stepdaughter is retarded. Very high-functioning, but retarded. Christmas morning she loses emotional control and proceeds to destroy our house, breaking everything made of glass and overturning the tree. She screams and shouts obscenities as she's dragged to the car. We had to return her to her state facility where she could be managed. The only way she'd ride in the car was in the rear floorboard, held down face-first into the carpet by me -- all the while she's gripping my balls in a death clutch. The drive took 40 minutes and she was met with white coats. Upon returning, we visited relatives who were unaware of the trauma we'd just been through.

189. Winter wonderland no more (12/21/05) - Anonymous, Ontario, Age 50

On December 23, 2002, my Mum got cancer for the second time. That was my worst Christmas. Due to doctors� errors, she was not able to keep up her chemo, which of course was a bad thing. We spend our last Christmas with her in the hospital. My mother was an awesome woman who did Christmas to the max. Walking into her home was like walking into a wonderland. It will never be the same without her. She passed away ten months later in October, so the Christmas after was just horrible.

188. We don�t do holidays (12/21/05) - Kristin, California, Age 18

About 5 years ago I had everything � family would fly in from Colorado and N.C. and we'd have a big Christmas dinner and it'd be great -- the whole perfect family deal. Then my grandma died and that part of the family sold the house I grew up in (with my parents and grandma) out from underneath us. Since then I haven't had a Christmas or a Thanksgiving. Both holidays consist of me watching TV, my dad fucking around in the garage and my mom eating French bread pizza

187. Prozac Christmas (12/21/05) - SZ, Pennsylvania, Age 21

Last Christmas was the first (and only) Christmas during which I was taking antidepressants. I had just started taking them a week earlier and had yet to see any results, so I was obviously in a shitty mood. So Christmas day rolls around, and I drank a few glasses of wine during our family Christmas dinner. Shortly afterward, my parents went to some Christmas party, leaving me home alone. I start watching movies... and drinking... and watching movies... and drinking... Next thing I know I'm bawling my eyes out and have no idea why.

My parents get home in the middle of this episode and my dad starts yelling at me about drinking so much (I hadn't bothered to take care of the empty beer bottles or put the liquor away). Well, at this point the meds start reacting with the alcohol in a very bad way and things get rowdy. I brushed him off, telling him to mind his own damn business. He continues to yell and suddenly I leapt to my feet and got in his face screaming obscenities. He's not the kind of person to take that, so he starts yelling back. Well, before I know what I'm doing, I find myself beating the piss out of him and unable to stop. He slugged me in the jaw when I first attacked him but then stopped fighting back as I repeatedly crushed my fists into his face. Finally I got off him (I had him pinned on the ground waling on him) and looked around.

My mother had a look of horror on her face and I was very confused. It felt like an out-of-body experience. Slowly my dad got up and looked at me. He was bleeding from his nose and mouth and had two huge shiners. I didn't know what to do at that point, and my mother was screaming at me all while this was going on. My dad started to open his mouth to say something... and that's when I caught him with a right hook and dropped him again.

I didn't stick around this time though. After he dropped I ran up the stairs and out the door (barefoot) into my front yard into my truck. I proceeded to drive drunk and barefoot for about 15 minutes to my best friend's house. His little brother let me in, but he was fast asleep. So I passed out on their basement couch. Upon returning home the next day I found all my bags packed.

186. A curse upon you (12/21/05) - Anonymous, Las Vegas, Age 37

Most of my Christmases have been good, but the last few years have sucked. In 1995, my dad, who I had not seen since high school, was supposed to visit for the holidays. At the last minute he said he couldn't visit. He never called for Christmas so I knew something was wrong. They found his body 5 months later, decomposed in his apartment. My aunt was too lazy and didn�t care enough to file a police report or go knock on his door to see if he was OK or get the landlord to open the apartment up.

A few years after that, my mother, who had already had a stroke, broke her hip. She had an infection in her foot that she told no one about. Turns out she had gangrene and her leg below the knee had to be cut off. Her doctor was Hindu or something, and he goes and cuts her leg off on Christmas Day. He could have waited a day. I hope he comes back in his next life as a festering boil.

The last few Christmases have been bad because of no money. It's depressing seeing everyone happy and buying gifts and you can't. This year, my brother is one step away from me having to Baker Act him. He's been suicidal for over two months now, and won't take medication or get help. His girlfriend thinks she can cure him and that medicine doesn�t work. I have no money to buy gifts this year, my rent was due on the 3rd and I have no money to pay that. My job isn�t even having a Christmas party; they want us to have a party in February. I hate hearing Christmas music or commercials on TV. It's really getting to me. I really used to enjoy the holiday but not anymore.

185. Cold-hearted bitch (12/21/05) - Anonymous, Iowa, Age 19

My parents never had time to raise me, so I had a �grandma� who was the wife of a man my mother worked with. She raised me, and is wholly responsible for me being a 4.0 student all of my life. My mom never liked her, yet allowed me to be in her care while she worked for years and years. I thought of her as family and I loved her more than my biological grandmothers.

Two years ago, on Christmas Eve, I was walking past the living room and my mom says, �Oh, I�ve been meaning to tell you this. Your grandma died today,� in the most casual voice I have ever heard her speak. I collapsed in the hallway and cried for hours. She sat and watched TV. Merry Fucking Christmas, you bitch.

184. Broken heart, broken hand (12/21/05) - Ryan, Chicago, Age 21

Christmas 2003 was the worst Christmas for me ever. A week before the 25th, my girlfriend of 8 months, my first love, dumped me the day after our 8 month anniversary, after I had taken her out to an expensive dinner the night before. In the following days I found out that she had been cheating on me for the past month. Then two days after the breakup, my friends dragged me to go snowboarding with them. I ended up fracturing my wrist and had to have surgery the day before Christmas Eve. While my family had a great Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas Day at my grandparents, I spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day lying alone in bed, taking about four 750mg Vicodins every hour to wash away my physical and emotional pain. Worst Christmas ever.

183. Festive fistfight (12/21/05) - Anonymous, Tennessee, Age 47

I think my worst Xmas was in '83 or '84. In '83, my alcoholic husband came home roaring drunk and angry. We had a fistfight in the basement and my 13-year-old nephew, along with one of his friends, broke up the fight. His friend put my husband out the door and into a snow bank. A year later around Xmas we tried to get back together, and again, it didn't work out. I have since been diagnosed mentally ill and can't afford my meds. This year I am supposed to go to my in-laws' for Xmas, and I�ll have to put up with 30 housecats (I'm allergic) and a bratty niece. With the help of my friend Jim (Beam), I'll be fine.

182. Slipped on the slopes (12/21/05) - Joe, Massachusetts, Age 20

Last year when I was 19 and getting ready to come home from college for Christmas break, I decided to go test out my new season pass at the local ski resort (two days before Christmas). Obviously a bad idea in hindsight, as I fell and snapped my right leg in half. I had to get driven home from Vermont with my leg in a splint, and I spent Christmas Eve and Christmas in the hospital recovering from surgery on my leg. This Christmas I�m getting surgery a few days after Christmas to get the metal in my leg removed, so more holiday cheer spent in the hospital!

181. Right to the point (12/21/05) - James, Everett, WA, Age 20

I was overseas for a Christmas port visit in Hong Kong. I received an email from my younger sister. It simply stated this:

�Hey, if you tried to call the house and couldn�t get thru, it�s because the house burnt down this morning. Merry Christmas.�

180. Stale turkey and warm urine (12/21/05) - Bill, New Jersey, Age 40

This story usually takes the cake when talking about shitty Christmas Days�so here goes. I was 17, and my father was dying of cancer. He was a 230-pound man knocked down to 120 pounds in a few months...not the best thing to see. So Christmas Day rolls around and all the happy horseshit plays out. We all know that after weeks of planning, it's OVER by 4 o'clock...done, finished, no more presents to look forward to, just after-Christmas sales on the TV.

Christmas 1983 was a dreary day around 55 degrees and a light mist of rain pissing from up above...I got your fuggin' White Christmas right here. So, Christmas is over, and we are taking a ride to the VA Hospital to visit my father for his last Christmas. I tell you nothing beats a Christmas at a VA Hospital, visiting your dying father with the smell of stale processed turkey and warm urine in the air.

179. Picking up the pieces (12/21/05) - Kate, Macon, GA, Age 18

My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in September, and will be in the hospital through Christmas. My boyfriend is in Iraq, and my brothers aren't coming home. Because I am the oldest daughter, I am taking care of everything that my mother normally would. On top of that, I am dealing with finals and I am totally ready to bitch slap my older brother for ignoring the needs of our family. Why am I the one that picks up the pieces?

178. Holiday hit-and-run (12/21/05) - JP, Virginia, Age 19

Three years ago, a normal Christmas was quickly transformed into a terrible one. Following gift opening and Chinese for dinner, my brother and I went to see Gangs of New York later that night. He drove, but suggested that I should park the car and he would get the tickets. (Recently the movie theater had started to ID for every R rated movie, and I was only 16 at the time.)

I decided that it would be best to park close, but I ended up hitting the car I was trying to squeeze in next to. I thought about what to do, and I decided to flee and park much further away. I didn't tell my brother any about it, and I watched the movie, and I was briefly able to forget my troubles. My brother drove me back to my mother's, not noticing the little damage on the car. Around 4 a.m. my mother woke me and asked me if I had hit a car outside the theater. She said the police were on their way, and I was arrested about an hour later. Turns out there was a deputy right outside the entrance who had seen the entire thing.

177. We lost everything in the blaze (12/21/05) - Donovan, Sunnyvale, CA, Age 22

On the day after Christmas in 1993, I awoke to the sound of my father yelling, "Boys, get out! FIRE!� Our Christmas tree had caught fire, which set fire to the drapes and the carpets, which ultimately engulfed the entire house in flames in less than 10 minutes. My 2 younger brother, my dad, and I narrowly escaped being swallowed up in the blaze. We lost everything: all of our Christmas presents, all of our clothes, furniture, pictures, the whole 9 yards. Our family dog also died in the fire.

Since the entire house was destroyed, and we were left with nothing and nowhere to stay, we had to stay in a hotel for two weeks until a rental home could be located. There as also a lengthy dispute with our insurance company (fuck you, Farmers Insurance) over who would pay for the damages to the house and the cost of rebuilding.

The next year, on December 23rd, some asshole ran over and killed our cat, which had survived the fire, just as my dad was preparing to sit in front of the house dressed as Santa Claus and hand out candy canes to all of the neighborhood kids. Merry fucking Christmas.

176. Something was very, very wrong (12/21/05) - Corbin, Los Angeles, Age 29

The last time I celebrated Christmas was when I was 19. I was living with my mom at the time and me and my two brothers will never forget what happened two days before Christmas. My mom had taken us all to the mall that day to do some Christmas shopping for Dad and my younger sister. Everything was fine until we got home and saw five police cars parked in our yard and driveway. I knew as soon as I saw them that something was very, very wrong. My mom told the cops that she lived there and wanted to know what was wrong. The cop gave my mom a look of concern but let her through. My mom told us all to stay in the car and we did.

A couple of minutes later my mom came out of the house stumbling and sobbing like I have never seen her before. She looked very pale as if she had seen a ghost. It turns out that a couple of thugs had broken into our house and shot my dad in the chest with a shotgun and my sister in the face. She was only 10. They had taken everything. They robbed the place clean. I'll never forget that day.

A few months later my mom committed suicide and one of my brothers is now locked up for life for double murder. He killed his girlfriend and their baby. My other brother is now in an insane asylum. I'm also very miserable and have been to jail a couple of times for battery and assault. Yeah. Merry Christmas indeed.

175. Bad dog, no Christmas (12/21/05) - Samantha, Arizona, Age 20

When I was fifteen, my parents finalized their divorce a week before Christmas. I found the paperwork, signed and everything, while I was rummaging through my father's office. I cried for days, but never told my father why.

Last year my dog Skids ran away from home. Not too bad, until the pound told us he had "violent habits," as he was biting the pound workers and had bitten the people who had brought him in. Since he was an old dog and was having health problems, Mom thought it would probably be for the best that he be put down -- the day after Christmas, because the hospital was closed for Christmas.

174. Drunken jailbait (12/21/05) - James, San Jose, CA, Age 22

I got drunk three years ago at a party about a week before Christmas and met this really cool girl. She was really interested in me and made such a point of it that I knew she wanted me. Completely drunk, we had sex. Two days later, cops tore down my door and arrested me for statutory rape. Turns out she was seventeen, I was nineteen. I spent about three weeks in prison, including Christmas and New Years, only to be let off with community service and a fine. Her parents didn't try to press charges, thankfully. Funny thing is, me and her are still dating. Let�s just say that Christmas dinner with her parents is really awkward.

173. Jingle bullets (12/21/05) - Mega, Muncie, IN, Age 22

It was Christmas Eve and I was about 4 years old. I was in bed sleeping. My father had finished wrapping the presents and had some extra time, so he was cleaning his gun. Well, it went off, and shot right through the tree. It was a Dirty Harry-type gun. It tore the tree in two, went through two walls and out into the yard. The gun shot woke us all up. We came running into the living room where my father tells us Santa was looting the house and he had to kill the bastard. You can imagine what my little four-year-old brain thought. I was wailing that we would never get Christmas again. Both of my brothers were freaking out and Dad made them go look for the bullet in the yard. They never did find the bullet....

172. Frosty face-plant (12/21/05) - Anonymous, Massachusetts, Age 33

When I was 12 my parents got me the BMX of my dreams...a shiny new Mongoose. I immediately took it outside to try it out, in the subzero weather, on an ice-covered dirt road. I got a head start and shot down the road, turned around and came back. While flying by my house, I decided to slow down and hit the front brakes. I flipped completely over the handlebars and did a face-plant, which cost me 5 teeth and required numerous stitches and one reconstructive surgery. I was also somewhat traumatized and learned to resent my Christmas gift.

171. AWOL adulterer (12/21/05) - Elizabeth, NB, Canada, Age 19

My father, an officer in the military, had been cheating on my mother for seven months with a woman ten years his junior, who also happened to be the wife of a superior officer. We'd spent Christmas that year at his parent's house, and since my birthday is five days after Christmas (and they�d both be working), my parents dropped me and my brother off at my aunt�s house. Two days before my birthday, my mother showed up and said she had no idea where my father was. On my birthday, he called my aunt's house, got in a fight with my mother on the phone, and hung up. Turns out he was two provinces away, visiting his girlfriend (without a leave pass, officially making him AWOL). I star-69'd the number and called him back, but he didn't pick up. I ended up sobbing into his girlfriend's answering machine - with his voice on it - begging for him to talk to me. He finally called back and was joking as though nothing was wrong. I've never been so miserable in my life, and I remember it all so clearly every Christmas.

170. Christmas crime scene (12/09/05) - David, Germany, Age 32

When I was 19 my boss made me work Christmas Eve on the nightshift. I got home at about 9 a.m. to find police cars surrounding my house. I managed to get past the insensitive police officer at the crime scene line to talk to my mother, who was in a state of shock. A police officer told me that my father had strangled my brother in a drunken rage. He ended up serving a life sentence in prison and my mother killed herself about a week later. I've never had such a bad Christmas and attempted to commit suicide 3 times over the following 3 Christmas periods.

169. Just another miserable day (12/09/05) - TL, Ohio, Age 51

I have a heart condition that has always prevented me from doing most things normal people take for granted. I've had it since birth. The thing is, since I was also adopted into a family which already had three natural children, I was always the odd spoke in the wheel, and never received the same love and attention as the others.

I recall way too many times watching the others unwrap their expensive gifts at Christmas, while every Christmas I would receive the standard shirt, and a small box of Whitman sampler candy. Now I am 51 and have never in 51 years had a Christmas experience that was enjoyable.

Since I can't work, I know way ahead of time that there will never be any Christmas presents under any tree for my wife of 14 years. She's disabled as well. It makes me sick to see these rich people who take everything for granted smiling with arms full of packages for their loved ones while not giving a rats ass about those less fortunate.

Christmas is just another miserable day, same as all the rest. All year round we scratch and save to pay rent and buy food and pay our bills. December is no different.

168. I was a selfish brat (12/09/05) - Keith, Kentucky, Age 37

I guess my worst Christmas was in 1975. My dad had been ill that year and my parents had struggled to pay the utilities. Despite the hard times, he had gotten better and back to work in time for them to pay the bills, and they were relieved. I guess Christmas had snuck up on them with all the effort they put into saving our home.

Only a few dollars were left, but my mom realized it was Christmas Eve and took us to town to buy presents. All I could worry about was what I wanted. I had no idea the reality of the situation, nor had I the ability to understand just what a brat I was being. Not a Christmas goes by that I don't think about how she must have felt and how I wished I had understood. My worst Christmas was my own fault.

167. TV dinner and porn (12/09/05) - Scott, Georgia, Age 23

I just got back from an 8-month deployment to find out that my wonderful wife was a little less than faithful. I got to my house to find my laptop, computer, TV, and recliner piled neatly in a corner. Everything else was gone, right down to the dishes and cups. This Christmas will be a TV dinner in front of the TV while downloading porn. It just might be the best Christmas ever.

166. Smoked Xmas turkey (12/08/05) - JB, Poughkeepsie, NY, Age 51

My mom was a little "senile" and 1991 was the last year we let her host Xmas dinner. She had to run out and get some spices, while we tended to dinner preparations. The bird ended up being way too big for the pan to cook it in, and the obvious result was a serious grease fire in the oven. I saved the bird, and while my wife held the oven door closed, I called the fire department. My mom had so many decorations in her windows, you couldn't open any of them to vent the smoke. By the time my mom got back, the fire was out and I spent Xmas night in the emergency room, due to my wife's case of severe smoke inhalation. HO-HO-HO !!!

165. Worst four out of five (12/08/05) - Ryan, Nebraska, Age 24

Four out of the five last Christmases have been spent with my family in the hospital with someone either dead or dying. First year: My grandma died in our living room while we were opening presents. Next year: Nothing. Just weirdness. Third year: My mom had been in a coma from leukemia and died the day after Christmas. Lotsa fun. Fourth year: On Christmas Eve we found a tumor in my six-month-old nephew the size of your fist, and so we rushed to the hospital to spend another year there. Last year: On Christmas Eve, my brother-in-law and that same nephew were in a car accident which sent both of them to the hospital, with nice, big pieces of metal though my brother's body. Everyone lived, though. So, who knows what's going to happen this year. I think it's probably my turn.

164. Christmas in the crazy house (12/08/05) - Cat, US, Age 20

Near the end of November, my best friend tried to kill herself. I visited her in the mental hospital regularly for nearly a month when she was finally released. Two days later, my brother tried to kill himself. Just when I thought I was done with that place, another month of regular visits, and Christmas Eve and Christmas day spent "celebrating" in the mental hospital, surrounded by crazy people�all day Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to boot, thanks to extended holiday visiting hours.

163. That really sucks (12/08/05) - Goldie, CT, Age 30

When I was 18, I was at a Christmas party with my friends. Well, I can't drink much and got toasted pretty quick. Anyway, this really good-looking chick who I was after kinda took advantage of me. She pierced my nipples and both ears, which I allowed like a grinning idiot. Then she told me I could check her out naked if I would blow myself first. Well, after a few tries, I was able to get myself in my mouth. Then the bitch opened the door and everyone at the party was able to see me. Some fucking friends. I�ve never been able to live this down. Since then, I don't drink, I don't do parties, and I don't do Christmas. I also don't see any of the assholes that made fun of me.

162. Croaked on the crapper (12/08/05) - Jon, Hawaii, Age 26

Dec. 19, 1995 I found my step-dad dead, on the toilet, as I was leaving to take a final at school. So this was shitty (pun intended), but what was worse than seeing my step-dad's dead ass (literally) was having to call my mother at work and tell her that I had found her husband dead. The best part was when I had to pick her up from the office (she was so hysterical that she couldn't drive), and she started ripping my clothes and scratching my face in front of her co-workers. Also, the fact that when we pulled into the driveway, the funeral home was just bringing the body outside, the icing on the cake. Screw you, Santa!

161. Bad things come in threes (12/08/05) - Dustin, Washington, Age 21

Four years ago I was busy taking my finals just before I was going home for the holidays, when I get a phone call from my parents that I need to drive to Spokane to visit my grandfather, who was put in the hospital for a heart problem. Supposedly it was minor, so I thought nothing of it and proceeded to come to Spokane a few days later.

When I arrived, my grandfather and everyone seemed to be in high spirits, thinking that he would make it through OK and everything would be fine in time for Christmas. Everything wasn't fine. Ended up that my grandfather had a reaction to the medication he was taking and that caused his lungs to harden to the point where he couldn't breath. He ultimately died 3 days before Christmas.

I thought nothing could get worse until I remembered my mother telling me that bad things come in threes. Over the course of the next 3 days I found out that my girlfriend of 5 years was in a roll-over accident and may not make it through to Christmas, and I failed 3 of my finals because I forgot to go take them because I was in the hospital with my grandfather. Christmas sucks. We don't even celebrate it anymore since that year, and now my grandfather's children are fussing over his money.

160. Christmas party pooper (12/08/05) - Jay, NY, Age 51

This story was miserable then...but it�s funny now. My wife and I went to the annual Xmas Eve family get-together about 10 years ago. We arrive, fashionably late, and immediately walk over to our hosts to greet them by the tree. Much to our horror, my wife had stepped in dog shit in the front yard, and proceeded to leave footprints of her travels through the house. (Footprints a dance studio would have been proud of.) Needless to say, the hallway and living room had to be evacuated of 30 or 40 people, IMMEDIATELY (or else someone else would have stepped in it!), and all sorts of cleaning had to begin on the carpet in the hallway and living room, with everyone in full formal Xmas attire. Xmas eve dinner was late that year. We didn't stay for dessert.

159. Cancer Christmas (12/08/05) - Sebastian, Lafayette, IN, Age 24

Christmas '96 was bad because my mother was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Christmas '97 was horrible because my mother was in the hospital receiving her biweekly chemo treatment. Christmas '98 was perhaps the worst, because, at this point, my mother's cancer had returned and she was in such a bad state that she couldn't travel. So, our whole family came to our house for the festivities.

It was probably the best Christmas, until, early in the afternoon, my mother had a breathing problem (relating to the cancer) and was rushed to the hospital. The day after Christmas, northern Indiana experienced the start of the worst blizzard since 1978, so I was stuck in the hospital for the next 9 days (taking showers in whatever empty patient room I could find) until the police said it was OK to travel.

I went home for the evening and was awakened on January 4th, 1999 with a call from my sister that mom had passed away, and I wasn't even there. So, that would be the worst.

Christmases haven't been that great since then either. My current job (and the one I held previously) is as a manager in a department store. That being said, I have spend the last 4 years working Christmas eve and the day after, and have not been able to see my family on the holidays since the worst one.

This year...I have the DVDs and vodka already lined up for a merry Xmas.

158. Sharp shooter (12/08/05) - James, Pennsylvania, Age 65

It was four years ago when my grandson turned 13. For the past 3 years, all that he asked for was a BB gun. I figured that now that he was a teenager, he could have one, and use it for practicing on small animals, seeing as his father was going to take him hunting the next year. Finally it reached about six in the evening, and time for presents under the tree. I had wrapped it in red wrapping paper with Santa and his reindeer on it. He threw the wrapping paper aside, and I watched as he picked up the box and had the most satisfied look on his face. Little did I know that in about 3 minutes, I would be on the floor with a BB pellet in the back of my knee cap. Ho ho ho, merry friggin� Christmas.

157. Dad fed us scraps (12/08/05) - Anonymous, Delaware, Age 22

When I was 10, my mother couldn't afford presents, so we got a couple of things from the dollar store and that was it. The only thing I was looking forward to was going to my grandmother�s house for Xmas dinner. When my mother said we weren't going, I started to cry. That�s when my mother beat the crap out of me and left me several bruises. I ran outside in the snow and sat there for hours while she locked me out.

A couple years later, I was forced to live with my father, who I'd never met before because my mother had been arrested. My father treated me and my brother like we were horrible little secrets. For Xmas me and him got $5 in quarters while my dad�s other children and his new wife got all these wonderful gifts. For Xmas dinner that night, he and his wife went to a restaurant and me and my brother were forced to sit outside in the truck while they ate. Then they came back and gave us the scrap food that they didn't eat. Bastards. I now don't speak to either of my parents. If they died tomorrow, it wouldn't matter to me at all.

156. One shitty Xmas after another (12/08/05) - JC, Largo, FL, Age 39

I'm 39 years old. Over the years the following things have happened to me during Christmas. My house was foreclosed on the weekend before Christmas back in 2001 and I had to move into my truck. I hope the bank burns down.

I lost my girlfriend of 7 years when I caught her in bed with another guy. I had just gotten home from a family camping trip which she said she didn�t want to attend due to nausea -- 2 days before Christmas.

During one Christmas a few years later, I lost my job because my coworker got fired on Christmas Eve and I told my boss that it was a terrible thing to do right before the holidays -- so he said, You can join him, and fired me as well.

One year my cat, which I had for over 10 years, became sick. The vet told me he had heartworms which is incurable in cats, so I had to put him to sleep a few days before another glorious December 25th.

One year, my Dad, who was an alcoholic, decided that he didn�t like the way our tree looked, so he jumped up and down on it until it was flat -- complete with presents underneath. I was only 12 then and my brothers and sisters all sat around and cried for the entire day as we picked through the ruins of our gifts.

So this year I am biting my nails, wondering what torture the universe has in store for me.

155. It�s always something (12/08/05) - John, Nevada, Age 44

In 1997 my first wife told me she was having an affair with an OLD man I used to work for, and got I her the job with his company. This was on December 7.

In 1999 my Mom died 3 weeks before Xmas. The only good thing was we were able to buy a small house from her small savings. Now, we send all our money to the bank every year. But at least we have a roof over our heads.

In December 2001, my wife was diagnosed with cancer. A year later a hit-and-run driver smacked me on my bike (our car got repossessed because my wife couldn't work, and I had doctor�s orders to stay with her 24/7 because the chemo drugs almost killed her). I had my hip replaced and lay in bed all Xmas day.

Last year, on December 23, I got hurt on the job and have been out of work all year, dealing with workman's comp assholes. Plus, my other hip has got arthritis so bad, I get to have surgery again a week after Xmas this year.

For Xmas this year, I found a nice sparkly quartz rock in the backyard. It's my present to my beautiful wife. I'd buy her something, but the bank just raised our mortgage $200. Starting when? December!

154. Hypothermia for the holidays (12/08/05) - Anonymous, Northeast US, Age 36

I never was much for Christmas since I was 16, but there always seemed to be at least one good thing that I could focus on so it seemed a little like Christmas. But four years ago I had my most miserable Christmas with no redeeming factors about it at all.

I had just run from my ex-husband because he had tried to kill my son by strangling him and I jumped on his back to save my son. We went to a homeless shelter for most of the fall and I finally had saved enough to get us an apartment. But my job was minimum wage and didn't go far. I didn't have enough money to buy any gifts and the fuel ran out on Christmas Eve.

So, I sent my son to his friend's house to celebrate and I sat alone in a 20 degree house (which wasn't much warmer than the 15 degrees outside), huddled in all my clothes and a coat with all the blankets we owned wrapped around me. So, Christmas day was spent wrapped up and shivering on the bare floor. Actually, I guess even that Christmas had a silver lining because I got to catch up on all the sleep I had lost trying to build a life for us again.

153. The crack head who stole Christmas (12/08/05) - Katie, Alaska, Age 21

All I got for Chistmas this year was money and gift certificates, and I opened them at my grandma's house, and then put it all in my purse so I wouldn't lose anything. Added up all together it was probably worth $200 or more -- a lot for a poor college student. And then my step-granddad's daughter in law shows up, and she's literally a crack head with no job, and she stole my whole purse! There went my license, credit cards, check book, and all my Christmas presents! And then my mom yelled at me for it! Argh! I hate Christmas!

152. Impotent and gutless (12/08/05) - Todd, Michigan, Age 55

I just spent my 18th straight Christmas alone today. I got divorced 22 years ago. My last relationship was with an alcoholic slut who dumped me November 1986. Mom and dad and brother are all dead. I suffer from extreme social anxiety, and have no friends, just work acquaintances. I lie to them about "going out of town to spend Christmas with my family.� I could never tolerate their pity if they knew the truth.

I've been impotent for the last 18 years. I tried psychiatrists, urologists, the works. Confidence with women, always in short supply in my life, is gone. I once had hope before I lost my looks and got old, fat, sickly, and bald. My own fault? Sure, but a lot of piss ass luck too. I guess a lot of guys would have killed themselves on one of those 18 Christmas days alone. I still have two hours left tonight. But I guess I'm GUTLESS too...

151. Vicodin Xmas (12/08/05) - Terra, California, Age 22

My worst Christmas was when I was 19. A month before Christmas I decided to get an industrial piercing in my ear. Well, lo and behold, the ear gets infected a few days before Christmas. I ended up spending Xmas Eve in the emergency room and I can�t even remember Xmas day because I was in so much pain. The following week I sat in bed all day in a daze of pain and Vicodin. I ended up getting surgery for my ear on New Years Eve (my worst New Years Eve too).

150. White wedding � not! (12/08/05) - Maria, Philadelphia, Age 26

My boyfriend proposed on Valentine�s Day 2002. I immediately started making preparations for the big day. My family and I got the hall, the flowers, my gown, the whole nine yards. We were to be married the week before Christmas, with the whole wedding in the Christmas theme.

The day finally comes, and my fiance has been so sweet and loving and attentive, how could I possibly think anything would go wrong. Our families were assembled in the church, fully decorated in beautiful red and white. I�m in the back room of the church waiting for my cue to walk down the aisle -- in front of 250 guests, mind you -- and then the door opens and my future father-in-law gives me the shock of a lifetime. It seems that my beloved has decided to POSTPONE the wedding because he felt he wasn�t ready to settle down. I was in total shock. I must have stood there for a good 5 minutes before I could speak.

My bridesmaids just stood there looking at me, as if waiting for me to go crazy. I simply stood up, walked out the nearest door, took a cab home, thankfully the cabbie felt bad for me and let me go on the fare. I went to my bedroom and just sat on my bed. I just simply wanted to die. I had never felt so low in my life.

Well, to make a long story short, my family simply made an announcement in church, and what few people were left were invited back to enjoy the dinner at MY reception, of course, without the bride and groom, that is!!!! Well, I have since recovered from that ordeal and to my surprise my ex has started sniffing around again. Yeah, right!

149. Crazy Christmas bum (12/08/05) - Nick, San Diego, CA, Age 22

Well, the morning of Christmas Eve I spent at the San Diego County Jail, trying to bail my older brother out. To my dismay, I could not afford the $10,000 fee the bondsman wanted to post bail. So I went to the nearest bar and had a beer before making the drive back home.

As I left the bar, I noticed one of the many downtown bums grumbling to himself and looking pretty fuckin' miserable. So I figured since I wasn't going to have a merry Christmas, maybe I could help someone else have a better holiday. I offered to buy him a drink or food, and soon found out that this bastard was feral! He swung at me and missed. With his second swing he caught me with a screwdriver just inside my left arm under my bicep.

This lovely event was followed by an ambulance ride and a 2-hour surgery. But the bum got his comeuppance before going to the hospital. I managed to knock the fucker off his feet and plant a couple of steel toes square in his mouth.

148. Forgotten B-day boy (12/08/05) - Adam, Reno, NV, Age 20

My birthday is December 23rd and my family doesn't like me as much as my brother, so when Christmas and my B-day roll around, I don�t get much. This year (2004) Christmas was the worst (and I hope it stays that way). I had to work my birthday which has never happened before, and when I walked out of the office, I found my car had been stolen. They never found my car and no one said happy birthday to me (they forgot entirely). From now on I�m staying home with my girlfriend and having sex all day.

147. Girlfriend in a coma (12/08/05) � Mike, Alaska, Age 22

December 3, my girlfriend was on her way to my place to see me, and apparently hit a pothole, got turned sideways in the road, and got T-boned at about 65 mph. Well, she should have died that night but didn't. So I spent Christmas beside her bed, while she lay lifeless, in a coma, with the right side of her skull removed and her brain swollen out the side of her head. She is still in a coma and doctors say she won't ever come out. She is alive, but only by machines. Fuck Christmas. That is what I will always remember Christmas being.

146. Please don�t kill Mommy (12/08/05) - Heather, Maryland, Age 35

My worst Christmas was one of many. My family always had huge fights on Christmas or around it, throwing the decorated tree over, etc. Well, I was very young, maybe 5, my little brother was 3 and my older brother was 8. My parents got into it again. We were all standing in the doorway to my parents' room begging daddy to "please don't kill Mommy" on Christmas Eve. He was standing over her with a sledge hammer. That year was the real kicker.

My grandmother and uncle came over with presents. My parents never could afford really good gifts or what we wanted, but my grandmother and uncle did. Well, to top off what my father did (he left that night and didn't come back all day), my mother took all of our presents that came from my grandmother and uncle and threw them down the front steps (two flights). We had gotten a television from them, and many gifts that we really wanted. The neighbor kids never forgot it and proceeded to torment us until we grew up and moved out.

145. Thirty years of misery (12/08/05) - Anonymous, Virginia, Age 37

I can divide my life into before and after. Before Christmas when I was 8, things were not perfect but I was pretty happy and secure. Since then, my life has been 30 years of hell on earth.

Christmas morning when I was 8, I ran downstairs to see the presents under the tree. The only "present" was my mom's dead body. She had killed herself by laying on top of the presents and drinking Drano. It was a horrible mess. I screamed and screamed until my dad and my brother came.

My dad was never the same after that and wasn't able to work anymore. Mostly he just sat and stared at nothing. He died a few years ago. My aunt (my mom's sister) came to live with us and take care of us. She hated us for driving our mom to kill herself. I don't know what we did and I still don't know why my mom killed herself.

I had to go to a special school after that and I never did finish high school. Ever since that Christmas, I have suffered from horrible migraines and my face and body twitch out of control. I live alone and work as a receptionist in a group home. I don't really have anything to do and they only gave me the job out of charity.

I have never had a relationship with a man and will die a virgin. I will never have a family or friends. My brother killed himself when he was 22. Even though my dad hardly ever talked, I miss him so much. For 30 years I have cried myself to sleep every night. Now I feel so tired. I hate my tiny lonely room and I am so tired of TV. I am afraid to die because I know I will suffer torment for making my mom want to die.

144. Christmas crime confession (12/08/05) - Carmon, Virginia, Age 28

Last Christmas I had to do something I thought I would never have to do. I mean the thing is, the year before, my 5 children and I had NOTHING for Christmas�absolutely nothing. I have never committed a crime in my life, but I had to do it. I had to. I was desperate.

See, I was at Wal-Mart and some one had left her purse hanging on one of the stalls. I was the only on in there. I thought about taking it. I waited. I stalled. I thought about my 4 precious girls and my little baby boy. I so wanted them to have Christmas like all the other kids. So, I looked around. I quietly opened the zipper of the purse, took out the billfold, looked inside and saw a large sum of cash. Without counting it, I stuffed it in my pocket. Later when I got home, I hid in my room and counted out $260.00. I had to do it, for my kids. I mean they had no dad, I have no other family. I had to do it.

143. Xtra Xmas misery (12/08/05) - Shane, US, Age 36

I got shitcanned from my job a week before Christmas, then my girl came clean and told me she was fucking her boss. We broke up. And here's when it really sucks: My sister was in a car accident and lost her baby, her scumbag husband got busted for buying blow, my best friend blew his brains out (he'd always hated the holidays), and I got shot in my leg by someone playing with his deer rifle. All the day before Christmas Eve. And to top it off, while I was in the hospital, a nurse gave me the wrong drug and I almost died. This Christmas I'm getting hammered and staying that way until January.

142. Slight misunderstanding (12/08/05) - Cinda, Knoxville, TN, Age 22

I was with my husband for just over 2 years and for our third Christmas together, I had been planning a vacation to Hawaii for him, all his brothers and sister, and his parents. This took a LOT of planning, and I had to be pretty secretive about the whole thing. I often had to leave the house to make phone calls and arrangements. All-in-all, it took over a month to plan. Little did I know, my husband misinterpreted my sneaking out and being secretive as having an affair.

One night, 3 days until Christmas, after all the arrangements were finally done, I came home to find my husband with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, an empty bottle of whiskey, and a note saying "I know about your affair. I can't believe you'd do this to me. I'd rather die than to share you or lose you to someone else, which apparently I have." To make things worse, his family ended up blaming me, saying I shouldn't have planned the trip behind his back, and I drove him to take his own life. Worst Christmas ever!

141. Ungrateful family (12/17/04) - Lynn, Baltimore, MD, Age 29

I am a stay-at-home mother with two kids, so other than what my husband makes, I have no money of my own. I scrimp and save pocket change starting in January so that when Christmas rolls around I can afford presents for my family. This year I had a little over $600.00 to spend (go, pocket change!) and got some really nice stuff for my husband, mother, our dogs and a few extras for the kids. I woke up Christmas morning and enjoyed watching everyone open their stuff, waiting till after the present frenzy to hit my own gifts. As I cleaned up the big fucking mess they left, I looked under the tree and noticed THERE WAS NOTHING THERE. I didn't even get a thank you. Not even a phone call from my mother. And to top it all off I got a "Why are you always thinking of yourself? You're SO selfish!" speech from my husband when I tried to take a shower before bringing him his THIRD piece of pie. Fuck it. Next year I'm spending it on myself.

140. X-mas inferno (12/17/04) - Michelle, New Jersey, Age 23

My 17th Christmas was probably the worst day of my life. It started off pretty well. My poor white trash parents finally came up with some money to buy us real presents instead of $20 worth of clothes from K-Mart. So I actually got a pretty decent stereo system. Then, what do you know, but 3:00am I am awaked by the sound of smoke alarms going off. Yes, my house is burned down on Christmas and all my presents, as well as all my other belongings, got destroyed. Those that didn't get burned got smoke and water damage. That's not the worst part, though. The worst part was the next week when we ran out of money to live in a hotel. All six of us had to reside in a trailer set up in my driveway while they rebuilt my house. As you can probably imagine, my family became the butt of all the jokes in my town and high school. "Trailer Trash" is still my nickname.

139. Rocky Mountain asshats (12/17/04) - Chris, Tennessee, Age 33

Well, the worst X-mas I spent was in Denver, CO. The temporary agency had screwed up my paycheck so I was broke. I starved during that X-mas. To make matters worse, people in Denver are such two-faced assholes and were constantly giving me a hard time. Fortunately I got out of there, and am quite happy again. But I shall never forget those asshats in Denver! If terrorists blew the whole town to hell and killed everyone, I would be SO happy!

138. Terminal cheer (12/17/04) - Jim, Arkansas, Age 26

Last Christmas I was diagnosed with a terminal illness and told that I would probably die sometime around that time this year. My family keeps trying to keep me cheerful, but sorry that I don't feel like decking the damn halls.

137. Jingle balls (12/17/04) - Peter, Plymouth, Age 33

My Greek family was celebrating a traditional gathering. Wife, dog and everyone else was downstairs so I went into the bathroom to have a moment alone. My mother-in-law barges in just as I start to finish. She screams, I yanked up the zipper. The ambulance is called. I had to have 9 stitches in the ball sack, plus spend X-mas evening and X-mas day in the hospital. I hope they cancel X-mas.

136. Sleeping in a Wal-Mart parking lot (12/17/04) - Della, Tennessee, Age 22

After losing my job and being abandoned by my parents for being a lesbian, I couldn't afford rent and had to spend Christmas Eve sleeping in my car at a Wal-Mart�s parking lot.

135. Family sucks, mom can�t cook (12/17/04) - Marie, Canada, Age 20

Since my real father is out of the picture from my early days, I have to endure my mother�s husband�s ugly face getting drunk and saying the most dumbass jokes ever. I�ve been ignored by his side of the family which we celebrate holidays with because my mom�s side of the family is at war with my mother for bloody stupid reasons. X-mas gifts always sucked and rarely ever I got something I wanted (last year I got the crappiest cell phone you can get on the market, just so then can track me down wherever I am). But I�m also treated like the worst piece of trash because I refused to get higher studies. Basically, I�m expected to be more than perfect by people who simply loath me. And I, like the miserable soul I am, always end up outside, in my room or in a vacant part of the house, alone, bored and usually starved because mom can�t cook...AT all!

134. X-mas in an empty flat (12/17/04) - Don, UK, Age 27

I shifted to England when I was 25. Immediately broke up with the girl I was seeing (she was a slag), and subsequently was alone for X-mas. Not just alone, but in my boss�s newly acquired, unfurnished, run-down flat while he was in Australia. I cried my eyes out over a cold (no oven) TV dinner, while watching Back to the Future II - it reminded me of my family - who fucked up the time zones, and didn't call me till Boxing Day.

133. I found her body on X-mas (12/17/04) - Rick, Florida, Age 28

Last year, 4 days before Christmas my fianc�e, Who I loved more than anything, got raped. She spent the next couple days catatonic some times, uncontrollably sobbing at others. Christmas Eve she disappeared, and I spent the night out looking for her, talking to the police, etc. So I get home at 7 am Christmas day, to find my fianc�e had made it home sometime during the night, and cut her wrists in the bathroom. She left a long note saying about how she couldn't take being with me after her ordeal and that she would never feel differently. So I came home to my fianc�e�s dead body on Christmas. This Christmas I'm getting drunk and avoiding everyone.

132. She ran off with my brother (12/17/04) - Amber, Alexandria, Age 26

I had just gotten into a serious relationship with a girl named Liz. Me and her were hitting it off great. I've known her since we were kids and though we had never been in a lesbian relationship before, I felt this was going to go well. Christmas was just around the corner and Liz and I had just gotten our tree and did some shopping. One evening I was suppose to meet Liz at a nearby restaurant. She calls and cancelled, this being the first time ever she had cancelled anything we've done. That night Liz gets home late and says she was visiting her mother. The next day was Christmas Eve. Liz had left that morning to buy the duck for dinner. She didn�t return. I called her cell phone and the message machine said: AMBER, OFF TO BAHAMAS WITH YOUR BROTHER...MERRY CHRISTMAS

131. A gay Christmas (12/17/04) - Jeremy, Oregon, Age 30

It was set to be another wonderful Christmas, and we all gathered at my parents' house for dinner and the opening of presents. Although I had recently lost my job as a manager at a local Egghead software store I was ready to enjoy the season. We had a lovely dinner, Mom, Dad, and me. After dinner and as we were about to open presents, there came a knock at the door. It was an Arab gentleman of slight build who introduced himself as Sadid and asked for my father. Dad rushed to the door, had a quiet conversation with Sadid and then told mom and me he had an announcement. He was sorry and wanted to do this after gifts, but it couldn't wait. Seems he was fucking this guy and with a not-so-fond farewell, left to spend the rest of Christmas in gay bliss. The old queer sent mom a card the next season telling her he'd be marrying his gay lover on Christmas Day, so that next Christmas was no picnic either.

130. Five crappy Christmases (12/17/04) - Simon, UK, Age 31

Five years ago my mum was diagnosed with terminal Cancer. She was 47. Christmas was awful, whilst mum put on a brave face we new it would be the last. She died in June the following year. Four years ago my grandfather went in for an operation to see if he had bowel cancer. The surgeon failed to sew him up properly and he died. His birthday was on Boxing day so this Christmas was even worse, no mum or granddad and my grieving grandmother and father sat round the dinner table. The hospital then wrote to us and claimed the sample they had taken was benign and he didn't have bowel cancer in the first place. Three years ago my father was gripped by alcohol. A daily heavy user he was unable to join me and my brother for Christmas lunch. He spent most of the day in bed drinking, pissing and shitting himself. At 53 this was a slippery slope. Two years ago my father whom by now was a professional alcoholic died on Christmas day just after lunch. Last Christmas I got drunk and high on Class A drugs. I was close to giving up myself. This Christmas I don't want to be miserable.

129. Family showdown (12/17/04) - Marie, Florida, Age 24

On Christmas Eve my father decided to tell my mother that he was leaving her for another woman. What made it so bad is when he turned his back she picked up his 9mm and had it at his head. Both me and my sister, unaware of the situation, came running playfully in the room, so my dad dashed out the window. The awful thing was that she overdosed that night and we had to hide her weed before the cops got there. We spent that Christmas with some of her friends who literally hated us and for the next six weeks spent our time in our room. Dad appeared at the divorce, said I�m sorry. Yeah, me too. Bastard.

128. Get out and walk (12/17/04) - Bob, Alabama, Age 42

When I was 17, my Dad said he had gotten the greatest Christmas present ever for me. I figured he had bought me a new car, because that's what he kept leading me to believe: it'll help you travel, it looks nice, etc. Turns out he bought me a pair of the most god-awful ugly shoes I've ever seen. It's not like we were poor, he could have bought me a new car. I purposefully hurt his feeling by telling him I would be taking them back the next day. It really hurt his feelings. I was such an ass. Granted, this doesn't compare with Dad chain sawing my presents in a drunken fit or being raped, but it's my most miserable Christmas.

127. Christmas mistress (12/17/04) - Annie, Virginia, Age 41

Christmas 1998 I spent trying not to freeze to death. We had an ice storm and lost power Christmas Eve for several days. My now ex-husband, whom I thought was on the road working, was really with his mistress having a secret baby. He hid this fact for a year and then confessed the following Christmas. Christmas will always be merry for me now because the cheating, lying drunk won�t be in it! If you're out there....Happy Holidays Dear!

126. Dad had a stroke (12/17/04) - Jason, Texas, Age 20

Early on Christmas day I get a phone call from my mother saying that my father had a stroke that morning. That's just the thing you want to hear on such a day, or any day for a matter of fact. It turns out that he got worse and worse and has more strokes... and dies on Jan 13th, 2003. THAT WAS BY FAR WAS THE WORST CHRISTMAS OF MY LIFE!!!

125. Cold Christmas bitch (12/17/04) - John, Chicago, Age 37

I had been unemployed for the months before Christmas. My wife blamed me for this and constantly complained that I wasn't looking hard enough for a new job. We were very close to divorce. I finally got a job just before Christmas, but it involved my moving to Chicago. My wife refused to move so I moved there alone and rented a crappy apartment by myself. I spent Christmas alone in a new town, no friends, frozen pizza for dinner. I didn't even have a phone yet so I had to drive to my work office to call my kids and family. My wife wouldn't even talk to me when I called, just handed the phone to my kids. What was even worse is my wife refused to let my kids spend Christmas with my parents even though she is Jewish. The good news is that after a bad year, we patched it up and are back together. But, I always have the bitter memory of how cold she can be. I still enjoy Christmas, but only because of my kids.

124. Merry X-mas, you�re fired (12/17/04) - Moritz, Germany, Age 24

I got fired this Christmas, and am now stuck with a $800 car insurance bill due January first, psychotherapy because of depression that actually led to the loss of my job (not that I wasn't trying to help it, I've been in therapy for over a year and a half), and in the seventh semester at my university stuck somewhere between exams intended for the third and fourth semester. A good (homosexual) friend of mine fell deeply in love with me (and I absolutely can't reciprocate) and is now extremely hurt by whatever I say or do.

123. Grinch stole my grandkids (12/17/04) - Joan, Oregon, Age 61

I was thinking that maybe my most miserable Christmas would be the first Christmas after my husband passed, but no, last year was even worse. Thanks to their inept parents, my grandchildren were in foster care. Even after a frantic letter and several phone calls, "the state" would not let me see them for a Christmas visit. My daughter's in New York and my son in Seattle was estranged from the family. My other son (who isn't working) takes the car I am paying for (including insurance) and decides to "drive around to friends��. So after much pleading for the keys back, I called the police to report the car "stolen�. After that he gave back the keys. Now he's working but the car is just parked. I still have the keys.

122. Merry X-mas Mugging (12/17/04) - Chris, Edmonton, Age 18

It was late that night, and me and my girlfriend chose to walk downtown when a man dressed in nothing but a trench coat walked up to us and asked for money. Since it was X-mas, I was broke. I kindly told the man I was broke and walked away. He then took out a pistol (later cops said it was stolen) and shot me in the shoulder. X-mas was spent in a hospital breathing out a tube.

121. I�m over it (12/17/04) - Rupert, Minnesota, Age 29

I had been seeing this girl for 1.5 years as we approached the Christmas of '01. She decides at that time that our relationship is no longer worth the commitment. What I didn't know was that she was already fucking another guy at work. They were engaged one month after we officially broke up. Too bad he had to later fire her father from the same place and now they all live together in one small house....with 6 kids. It makes me very sad....oh there. I'm over it.

120. X-mas Armageddon (12/17/04) - Mandy, Nevada, Age 16

Christmas of �99 my parents had spent all their money on supplies for Y2K so I didn�t get any presents that year. I had wanted a baby sister, but mom said it would be wrong to bring another baby into this world because it was evil and everyone in it was going to burn in hell when Judgement came down. She let me get a puppy from a man down the street that was giving it away for free, then daddy ran over it backing out the driveway.

119. Sucky student Christmas (12/17/04) - Anonymous, UK, Age 18

I'm a first year international student who�s totally broke and has very few friends. I can�t go back home because I don�t have money to buy a ticket, and even if I did, I don�t wanna because my family hates me and my parents fight 24-7, and of course, I get blamed by everyone for something that�s not my fault. I mean, I didn�t ask to be born and I didn�t tell them to get married in the first place. I made plans with my friends for Christmas and New Year�s and they ditched me as well. Some went home and the other is going to London with her other friend and I�m not invited!!! This is gonna be my worst ever because I have no TV either, so will have to sit in my tiny room, staring at the blank walls which have no posters and pics, and can only afford to eat Tesco value spaghetti in tomato sauce because I only have �5 to live on for this month and probably the next month as well, and I�m gonna be on my own when all you lucky buggers are gonna be with friends and possibly family that like you (if not love you). My life sucks!!!

118. Counseling for Christmas (12/17/04) - Camilla, California, Age 18

I hate every Christmas. Just an excuse for my parents to get pissed that they broke the bank on presents I don't want. However, the actual day is even worse. I have to go to my Grandmother's house with my entire family and gather around the piano and sing for about three hours. This year should be more interesting though. My parents have found that I have been bulimic for the past six months and I get counseling for Christmas! Yay! Seasons fucking greetings.

117. Mom was roadkill (12/17/04) - Chris, New York, Age 24

Well two years ago on Christmas eve my mom and I decided to visit my aunt who was in the hospital, recovering from a kidney transplant. So as we where leaving the hospital to get to our car my car we had to cross a seemingly quiet road, when out of nowhere a car comes speeding down the road hitting and killing my mother. Good Christmas, eh?

116. Dad�s gay (12/17/04) - Anonymous, Australia, Age 16

I was 12 at the time, moving on from primary school to high school. I was sitting in my bed watching a movie on Christmas night, and my mum went absolutely spastic at me for no reason (this she now admits). I went outside and jumped on my bike and rode all the way to my dad�s at 12 at night, crying my eyes out. And then in the morning my father came in and comforted me and admitted to being gay. What a Christmas it was.

115. I�ll pray for you (12/17/04) - Anonymous, Indiana, Age 29

I had, or in my eyes "have" a best friend. This best friend and I were close for 2 years. I started questioning some things about this person, and even asked other people to pray for them. Almost every person I went to regarding this, went right on back to my best friend and twisted what I said and told her all of it. Therefore, my best friend came back to me upset and feeling betrayed, went to her husband and told him what an a** I was for turning on her, so now, this Christmas, he hates me, doesn't trust me, doesn't want her anywhere around me really plus she decided to get another "friend" in place of me, so IF I did celebrate Christmas, which I don' usual, this particular one SUCKS! And, by the way, the person who replaced me...well, she and her husband hate my guts and don't trust me either. Does it really pay to tell people the truth and seek to help them, even through prayer? Hmmm. And my family says I don't have that wonderful holiday spirit...well, try losing the only thing you ever prayed for, and then make MERRY...Screw it all!

114. Thoughtless gift (12/17/04) - Anonymous, Scotland, Age 24

Every Christmas with my parents has been a nightmare, ending always in tears, usually after physical arguments and fights. After finally cutting all ties from my psychotic parents and living with my boyfriend for 3 years, he breaks the only promise I ever asked him to make me (only involving truth and betrayal - not a lot(!)), the night before Christmas Eve. I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt because I�ve put so much effort into getting him all the gifts he wanted and cooking the right meal blah blah (his sorry ass did nothing). He gives me an ice cream maker. I�m allergic to milk. Real considerate. I�m only glad I�m not hemophiliac - it probably would have been a piercing voucher. Kicked him out on Christmas day to go to his family's house. I had already bought all the gifts they wanted, no point in everyone's Christmas being fucked up.

113. Dad�s a druggie (12/17/04) - Anonymous, US, Age 21

I come home for the only 3 weeks of the year to find out my dad is a druggie and that he is not living in the house and my parents have gotten a divorce and there is a restraining order against him. I go to his nasty motel he's staying at to give him a plate of Christmas food only to find him naked and drugged up.

112. Knocked up and dumped (12/17/04) - Sarah, London, Age 31

In the week before Christmas, my boyfriend failed to show up to meet me for the purpose of carrying out a pregnancy test, switched his phone off and ignored me, sent a text saying he wouldn't be buying me a present and then finally dumped me on Christmas Eve for being 'emotional'. I am still hopefully awaiting my period. .

111. Best friend dropped dead (12/17/04) - Sam, UK, Age 36

This December, my best friend from university decided he was going to ruin all our X-mases by dropping dead in his house in a diabetic coma. He was there a few days in his bedroom with just his cat, who must have got hungry. A mutual mate got suspicious when the phone didn't answer (he was always online) and the house was quiet, so he broke in and found my friend dead. The funeral was on Dec. 22nd which was a lovely bright crispy December day and also Winter Solstice. The service was in a friend had NEVER been religious and didn't believe in this God he was being commended to. My friend was buried, not cremated as I would have expected, which pains me to think of him laying there decomposing forever. Then there was tea and cakes with relatives. Poor sods, you should never have to outlive your children. This season has been utter crap for me (apart from the bike club Charity Solstice Party which was great). I lost my cat in November to cancer and my best friend in December to diabetes.

110. Mom, the Christmas whore (12/17/04) - Joe, Florida, Age 27

I guess I never really liked Christmas much in the first place. I mean, the fat SOB never brought my Hot Wheels car wash, so as far as I�m concerned Santa can get himself diabetes and die. But seriously, when I found out my Mom was a crack whore and was giving a X-mas special - sucky and fucky for price of $20 - that pretty much ruined it for me. I learned that Christmas is about giving...and taking, and the presents under my tree were courtesy of some guy down at the adult video book store that "handled" her money. Although, for some reason the guy at the X-mas tree lot always gives me my tree for free now, go figure.

109. Caught dad with gay lover (12/17/04) - Neal, US, Age 26

Last X-mas I was sitting around waiting for the gifts to be opened and my father told me that he had another lover and it was a male, his name was Steve, and that he was gonna leave us for him. Later that night I walked into the den to see my father giving a blowjob to Steve. I walked in at the wrong time I guess as I got to see my fathers face covered with jizz. When I tried to tell my mother about it she said he always liked men and she never stood in his way of what he desires

108. Girlfriend in a coma (12/17/04) - Alex, London, Age 31

During 1998, my 27-year-old girlfriend whom I loved very much, became ill. Eventually, after numerous doctors made various significant mistakes, we discovered she had cancer. She underwent chemo and radiotherapy, and had major surgery, but the NHS aftercare was pitiful. Her family were notable by their absence throughout. Finally, whilst she was still clearly very ill and should have been under observation, she was discharged, suffered kidney failure shortly afterwards, and went into a 2 week coma over Christmas. Sadly she should have died then, but she was a fighter. Once she came round she was seriously disabled, the cancer had taken firm hold again, and she died without dignity, or her family, on Easter Sunday 1999. Despite counseling and support from friends, I'm still wracked with guilt, full of anger, and can't move on.

107. We sold your car (12/17/04) - Will, Mississippi, Age 21

Spent Christmas this year in Basic Military Training. Talk about sucking; our MTI raised holy hell for 5 hours because one of the fuckwits in my flight didn't know how to fold a shirt (dumbass, you've had five weeks to learn!). Oh, and then, when I called my folks to wish them a merry Christmas, all my mom can say is "Your dad lost his job, we had to sell your car, you'll need to sign the title over to the new owner when you get back from tech school." Christmas sucks ass.

106. Killer Christmas present (12/17/04) - Kyle, UK, Age 20

On 25th December 1988 me, aged 5, and my 8-year-old sister ran into the living room to open our presents. Unfortunately our parents had put our main present (a mini snooker table) right in the middle of the room and my sister hit her side on it. Her spleen was ruptured and she died later in hospital. I remember being very unmoved by it all. I cried because my parents wouldn't let me play with the snooker table.

105. Feline flambe (12/17/04) - Rosco, Ohio, Age 25

I had made a beautiful dinner at my girlfriend�s for Christmas. As a final touch I lit the table candles. Everything was perfect... until her cat jumped up on the table and backed into the candle flame setting its fur on fire. Mindy was screaming at me for catching her cat on fire. Meanwhile the cat was running around the living room setting the tree and furniture ablaze. The cat ran upstairs and was never found. The house was a total loss by the time the firemen got it out. Mindy blames me for the whole thing to this day. If I ever see Mindy again, I will buy her a new cat named Blaze.

104. Dad died an hour before X-mas (12/17/04) - Courtney, Maryland, Age 18

My dad died an hour before Christmas (December 24th at 11pm)...kinda puts a damper on the whole f**king holiday season...I wish I could sleep through the whole damn thing!

103. He�s a cheat and an idiot (12/17/04) - Mae, California, Age 37

Just before Christmas a few years ago, my husband called one evening to say he was at the filling station and would be home shortly, but the next day when we were on our way to a Christmas party I noticed his tank was only half full, and he always tops it off. I let myself into his office late one night and went through his desk. Imagine my delight to discover he'd spent as much money as I had earned that year on prostitutes, including keeping a heroin-injecting skank in an apartment and paying off her pimp from time to time only to find out she (the skank) was letting him into the apartment when my husband wasn't around. So I find out my husband is not only a cheat, he's an idiot. But considering we'd been doing it between one and three times a week, maybe he isn't the only idiot. Fortunately the only disease he gave me was bird mite dermatitis.

102. Cheapskate father (12/17/04) - Sarah, Denver, CO, Age 20

This year, as my father drove me up to my aunt's house on Christmas day, he excitedly told me all about the new computer he'd just bought - for no real reason except that he wanted it - for the bargain price of $1500. When it came time to exchange gifts, he quickly left the room, grumbling that "the economy was so hard that he couldn't afford to buy anyone anything" and that "giving gifts is just a marketing ploy anyway, and the true meaning of Christmas is lost on you people." I of course knew the truth, but he succeeded in making the rest of the family feel really guilty for my poor father and the hard times he's obviously fallen into.

101. Festive firebomb (12/17/04) - Johan, Virginia, Age 26

Two years ago I was visiting my wife's parents when her 16 yr. old "genius" brother decided that he would use the shotgun shells he got for Christmas (he got them along with a shotgun; they were avid hunters) to make a bomb. He taped four of them together and put them all in his 4-year-old little sister's easy bake oven and put it on. The shells exploded, blowing all over the house, putting plastic shrapnel in all of us and burning powder all over everyone. Her dad fell over, and caught the rug on fire, which eventually spread to the entire house. We all got out, however the house was burnt down to nothing and we all spent at least a week in the hospital. Her brother was arrested for arson, and she is very weak emotionally now.

100. Christmas crack baby (12/17/04) - Emily, New York, Age 16

I got pregnant when I was only 13. I was due around X-mas morning. My parents didn't know I was pregnant until it was too late to have an abortion. I was into drugs and that�s how I ended up pregnant (I was high when it happened). X-mas morning I woke up with stomach pains, so I woke my parents up. My mom just said to deal with it and get dressed because company will be here soon. My water broke in the middle of everyone opening presents. We finally got to the hospital and I delivered the baby. The baby died 5 hours later. The doctors told me it's heart wasn't functioning because of the drugs. I told my boyfriend that I had delivered the baby and it had died. He flipped out. He later that week died of an overdose on drugs. This Christmas I�m due to have twins but I�m still doing drugs.

99. Shot in the head (12/17/04) - Steve, Florida, Age 21

For Christmas this past year my younger brother was given a 20-gauge shotgun. He was very excited, as was I, because I too enjoy firing off a round or two. I decided to take him out in to the woods to shoot it later that day and things went well until a round unexpectedly went off. I was hit with two pellets in my head. Luckily my brother was not injured at all. Unfortunately for me, the gun�s close proximity to my head caused me to have a severe and most likely permanent case of tinnitus. To those who don't know, tinnitus is like having a constant ringing in your ears. It may not sound so bad and I know that some people have had worse times for Christmas but two years with a constant ringing in your ears begins to drive you a bit mad.

98. I never loved you (12/17/04) - Tim, Detroit, MI, Age 37

Last Christmas my girlfriend and I met up late Christmas day...I received a LOT of little things, which was rather nice, and I got her a present sent over from Ireland. It was rather pleasant. We sat talking afterwards and I lamented that after 2 years together, we didn't get to see each other as much as I would have liked. It wasn't the greatest situation, but was unavoidable and I lived with it. Out of the blue, she chose this time to break up with me, telling me that she didn't know if she ever loved me and that it was a mistake that we ever hooked up. After 2 years, on Christmas, she tells me this. Haven't spoken to her since.

97. Nowhere to go (12/17/04) - Maria, New York, Age 48

My Christmas will be awful. The police sealed my apartment and threw my family out for allegations of drugs. Where will go? I have nothing - no money, no friends. I wish I had the nerve to kill myself. I'm walking around, but inside I'm dead. What can I do? Where can I go?

96. Family left without me (12/17/04) - Zach, Pennsylvania, Age 22

Christmas last year my mom told me to drive from Syracuse to Pennsylvania to visit. I made the drive, bought their presents, and I hadn't seen them in like a year and a half, no phone calls or anything. So I finally get to their house after six hours, I put the key in the door, open it up, and no one is there. No tree, no nothing, not a scrap of food in the house. They went to Florida and didn�t tell me, even though I called them two days before I came down. I preceded to get really drunk all week and think about all the other shitty Christmases. I guess you�re either a holiday person or you aren�t.

95. I torched the house (12/17/04) - Anonymous, Outside the US, Age 30

Christmas 2002 was the year I lost my family. For years I was always being told I wasn�t good enough, I was an accident, I would never amount to anything, I was a failure. I left when I was 16. I spent years living in shitty conditions with guys who would fuck me and let their mates fuck me as well, just so's I could get a roof over my head and some food in my body. I also craved affection from the assholes who were fucking me. I had 5 abortions as a result, got several diseases from the dirty motherfuckers and have had multiple fractures in my ribs from being severely beaten during sex. Later things started getting better so for some fucked up reason I went home to visit my family for Christmas in 2002, thinking I could make amends and start healing the rift. Nothing had changed. I was greeted with the usual shit and hatred. I stood there in the doorway with the small gifts I had for them, all that I could afford to buy with the small amount of money I was making as a cleaner, crying so fucking hard that I thought I would die on the spot. I eventually left and spent the rest of the day walking the streets and listening to other families enjoying themselves which made me feel even more miserable and alone. That night I returned and burned the fuckers alive in their beds. Thanks for listening.

94. Christmas should be banned (12/17/04) - Anonymous, UK, Age 34

The only memories evoked by Christmas for me are of breaking up with the woman I loved, and the death of my father from cancer at the ripe old age of 55. These days, those feelings are enhanced by the constant bitching from my miserable wife who hasn't got an ounce of love or goodwill in her fat carcass. Christmas has to be the worst time of year and it should be banned.

93. Puke on X-mas dinner (12/17/04) - Danny, Michigan, Age 22

When I was 5 my mom and dad got divorced and my mom kidnapped us cause she didn't want him to have custody. We went to California and spent Christmas with my mother�s aunt and uncle who where drug dealers. We went to a restaurant and we had dinner my brother ended up puking all over the table and all the food was covered with puke. My cousin just turned away from the table and continued eating while the waiter who was trying to clean up the table started puking himself. It was just a horrible mess. It was the worse X-mas I ever had.

92. Grandma threatened suicide (12/17/04) - Will, Colorado, Age 22

Every year, my family gets together for Christmas at my grandmother's house. All of the grandkids hate it, because my grandmother is a manipulative, controlling, conniving BITCH who loves to tell us how we're fucking up our lives. Last year, it finally came to a head when she told me that I needed to apply to a particular grad school, or else she'd kill herself because she knew she'd die unhappy anyway. Later on, she announced to the whole family that I had, in fact, made the decision to attend that school. When I said that wasn't the case, she swore to make good on her promise, then left in her car for God only knows where. The best part is that the family got pissed at ME for "pushing her to suicide". She's asked everybody back again this year, even sending out invitations. The invitations mention that she won't discuss "certain issues with certain family members" because they cause "crossed wires". Fuck her.

91. Dad died in my arms (12/17/04) - Pete, Philadelphia, Age 33

My Father suffered from cancer for several years, before dying four days before X-Mas 1994. We snuck him out of the hospital, so he could die at home in his bed. He died in my arms, from internal bleeding. It was a horrible mess, my mother lost her mind. We tried to have X-Mas that year, it was very dark. We opened gifts he had bought, and wrapped several months ago, the gift tags were in his handwriting. My mother continues to go insane every X-Mas.

90. Lost all my limbs (12/17/04) - Chris, North Carolina, Age 22

Two years ago, after finishing my second semester at college, and about to start my Christmas break, I began to feel quite ill. From having hot flashes to cold chills within minutes, and a 104 degree fever. My parents decided to rush me to the hospital. It turns out that I contracted a rare form of meningitis, which could have been prevented if I would have gotten the vaccination. Meningitis affects your circulation, and my hands and lower legs started to lose life, and turn blue/black. I had both of my legs amputated at the knee, and both of my arms amputated right below the elbow. Because I didn't pay $60 for a simple shot, I will never walk, write, or eat without any sort of assistance. What a wonderful Christmas this turned out to be.

89. Better off (12/14/03) - Judy, London, Age 22

1998 was my worst Christmas ever when I woke up to the sound of my drunk ass dad raping my mother. Then he made sit round the tree to open are presents like nothing had happened. Two months after my mum shot herself. Lucky bitch.

88. Big box surprise (12/14/03) - Brad, Illinois, Age 26

For xmas one year for the whole year all i wanted was a computer. I begged, I did chores, I did anything, all i wanted was a computer. Closer and closer to xmas I got hints as to my hard work may pay off. Then, finally the big day arrived. There was a big box that i thought could possibly be my dreamed of computer. Frantically I ripped open the box to see if my aforementioned computer was here. I opened the box to find newspaper? WTF is this? I dive through the paper to find a CALCULATOR with a piece of masking tape with the words COMPUTER written on it. I was shocked, heartbroken, and well just pissed off. My mom had a good laugh, but I'll be the one getting to put her in a home later in life..

87. Knock, knock (12/14/03)  - Cameron, UK, Age 24

The day before Christmas, police knocked down the door to my apartment, I was arrested and the officers were very harsh with me and called me names like "scumbag". I broke two fingers and got a concussion. It turns out the guy in the apartment over me had participated in a child porn-internet-ring and the cops had failed to realise which apartment was the right one... to make matters worse the local newspaper ran the story of my arrest with name included before the mistake was discovered. Many people in the area still look at me as I'm some sort of freak.

86. Denny's - Big Improvement (12/14/03) - Destonio, Age 44, Portland

My ex couldn't be pleased no matter WHAT Xmas gifts I bought her. One year, she bitched me out for buying her diamond earrings, because she knew a place where I could have saved $100 on the purchase.

Another time we went to visit my mother in Reno. Mom wanted to hang for an hour and pull some slots before making the two hour drive to Nevada City. My ex whimpered and blubbered the whole time, telling anyone who would listen that she spent a Xmas in a casino.

No pleasing that witch. The year I divorced her, I spent Xmas dinner in a Denny's . . . which was an improvement over any of the 12 Xmas days I spent with her.

85. Mom didn't love Dad anymore - Shannon, North America, Age 26

Well, I was 7 years old and hoping to have a nice Christmas with my Mom, Dad and little sister...without my parents screaming at each other. I woke up early Christmas morning and went downstairs to find my parents talking in their "serious voices." "Honey," my Dad said, as he ushered me upstairs, "There is something I need to talk to you about." He then began explaining how Mommy and Daddy would be getting a divorce, and when I cried and asked why, he said it was because my Mom didn't love him anymore.

84. Cheating wife and devil-spawn - Bernard, Nashville, TN, Age 34

I got married earlier in the year to a woman who had a child from a previous marriage. A few weeks ago, I found out that my new bride was fucking around with other members of the band I'm in AND their girlfriends! While I've been watching her Satanic child, she's been three-waying it with my former bandmates instead of Christmas shopping. Two nights ago her kid started yelling for me to come in the living room. When I got there, he had stolen my lighter and burned an ornament of Santa Claus sitting in a fire truck I've had since I was a little kid. It caught the tree on fire. Luckily, I had a fire extinguisher handy. I wish Santa would bring me some new curtains for the singed window by the tree, a new tree, and a body bag for my bisexual whore of a so-called wife and her stupid fuckin' kid.

83. Safety first - Bruce, England, Age 42

The TV antenna was loose on my roof and I decided to repair it myself. Being very safety conscious, I tied a rope to the bumper of my Land Rover, threw it over the roof, and climbed up the other side and tied it round my waist. While I was working on the roof my stupid bitch of wife decided to go Christmas shopping in my car. The cow dragged me over the apex of the roof onto the concrete driveway below. I'm now a sad bastard quadriplegic.

82. We spent the holiday weeping - Gary, New Jersey, 34

Last year I lost a cat to kidney failure, a dog to spine cancer, my Grandmother to cancer (the all-over-the-body type), then 2 weeks before Christmas, my father died of a stroke, in my mother's arms. We spent the holiday weeping in a huddle. My sister's kids were screaming so much for more toys that we shoved them out the door to my ex-brother-in-law's early just for a semblance of peace. This year we sort of ignored it all.

81. Assaulted on Christmas - Anonymous, San Francisco, CA, Age 34

I live in downtown San Francisco in a sorta hinky part of town. In 1993 I went down to the liquor store to get a pack of cigarettes and this big black guy followed me into my apartment building and then up to my apartment. Everyone in the building had gone somewhere else for Christmas and I was alone. He took out a knife and told me to let him in to my room. Then he raped me for about an hour nonstop telling me he'd just gotten out of prison and really loved white pussy. He kept repeating that "white pussy" shit over and over during the act. He was a crack head and smelled like crack rock. Thankfully it made him paranoid and he ran away telling me not to call the cops or else. I called 911 anyway after locking the door behind me but they took 36 minutes to get someone to my door. Now I HATE CHRISTMAS every single year and can't wait until it's over.

80. Christmas stalker - Tracy, Western U.S., Age 36

On Christmas Day of 1999 my fiance got drunk at my house while I had friends from out of state over for a party. After passing out for a few hours he woke up and started yelling at me. He called me every filthy name in the book and said he didn't want to be together anymore. I said, "Great! Go home" I helped him to his car with his gifts. He tried to get back into my house and found the door locked so he urinated from my front porch all the way to his car (it was parked in the street) while screaming, "You fucking bitch, you fucking slut!" My neighbors had relatives that were leaving a party at their house during his tirade. A few days later he wanted to reconcile. I said, "No way!" Now I can't get rid of him and the police in our city have filed stalking charges against him. He goes to trial next month.

79. Peas on Earth - Chris, London, Age 28

My girlfriend left me on Christmas Eve, 1998. I spent Christmas Day alone, sitting on a bean bag (she took all the other furniture), with a bottle of gin and no presents. Christmas dinner was spaghetti and frozen peas.

78. More than friends - Alan, Boston, MA, Age 30

It's Christmas Eve, and we're visiting my wife's folks. My wife calls her whiny best friend every time she's in town. My wife, her friend, and my mother-in-law go shopping as my father-in-law and I try to find some football on TV. At 3 p.m. mom-in-law gets home. She says the girls wanted to get in just a little bit more shopping. They get home at about 8 p.m.. Meantime, me and the in-laws have eaten the entire Christmas dinner, and we've been calling around to make sure the girls haven't gotten into an accident. I go to kiss my wife hello, and she runs off into the bathroom, crying. Her girlfriend says how horrible I am for being so mean to her and beating her (which I've never done). The in-laws hear this and threaten to call the cops. As it turns out, my wife and her friend are more than friends, and they can't keep it secret any longer. Bitch had to choose Christmas Eve to come out.

77. Don't use the good towels! - Ellen, Philadelphia, PA, Age 39

Two days before Christmas my father died from a massive heart attack followed by a stroke, ostensibly caused by the huge amounts of fried, fatty, processed food that my stepmother fed him for the past ten years. We picked out a casket on Christmas Eve, then spent Christmas morning opening presents that he bought us. I then spent the next few days in my stepmother's home, being yelled at for using the wrong towels (which were my deceased mother's, by the way).

76. Caught red-handed - George, Michigan, Age 25

Christmas is always a reign of terror for me. 1993: My dog bites my neighbor, is detained in a pound for three weeks, then ordered to be put to sleep. A week later, the same neighbor dies in a car accident. My dog was put to sleep for biting this bitch who was about to die anyway. 1996: We return to our house from shopping a week before Christmas to find it smoldering. 1998 tops it all off: I get caught masturbating by my sisters.

75. Dad shot mom - Darin, California, Age 17

When I was 13 my dad beat the fuck out of me in a drunken rage on Christmas Eve, sending me into intensive care. When I got home three days later I found out my dad shot my mom four times on Christmas morning, killing her.

74. Christmas smackdown - William, Texas, Age 35

Christmas Eve when I was 14, I knew things were headed down the shitter when my stepmother and dad started the day off with two 12 packs and their morning coffee. At the time we were to open our gifts, my father discovered there was no more beer and all the stores were closed. He began cussing my stepmother, who retaliated by telling him what a useless drunk he was. This then turned into a physical confrontation that resulted in my stepmother being drop-kicked into the Christmas tree and riding it to floor. She in turn tried to body-slam my dad, which knocked our only working TV out the window. My father, determined to get the bitch back, leaped with both feet right into our stereo system, which pissed my stepmother off big time because he broke the only Conway Twitty album. Finally the cops knocked on the door and settled everything down. Sometime I'll have to tell you about our Thanksgiving dinners, especially the one where my stepmother got her head shoved into the toilet.

73. Christmas chainsaw massacre - Alex, South Carolina, Age 31

On Christmas Eve when I was 5 my father came home completely cranked out of his gourd on Jim Beam. After uprooting our mailbox with the car, he staggered into the living room and, with one drawn-out staggering fall, managed to step on most of the presents, knocking over both the tree and a high chair containing my 10-month-old brother. He then gets into a 20-minute screaming match with my mother (with my brother wailing on the floor the whole time, still strapped into his high chair), ending with my mother throwing the tree out the front door. They then continue their fight in the front yard until the police arrive. After the cops leave my father fetches the chainsaw out of the garage and proceeds to cut to pieces all the unopened presents, taking huge chunks out of the floor in the process and nearly cutting off his own hand. The police are summoned again and Dad is hauled off to jail. Not one of the presents survived.

72. What we found under the tree - Don, Philadelphia, PA, Age 22

Five years ago, my mom got the bright idea that we should coat the tree from head to toe in shiny tinsel. What she didn't know was that when cats start to swallow tinsel, they can't regurgitate it--they have to finish swallowing all of it. We came downstairs that morning to find all three of our cats dead around the Christmas tree. They had also puked on our gifts, and one of them shat himself on the train set.

71. Low blow - Anonymous, North America

I once was at a Christmas party and had a little to much eggnog and was under the impression that I was being attacked by giant bird. It turned out it was just one of my cousins with a pillow. A couple of years later, I was punched in the groin by my toddler cousin (another one, not the one with the pillow).

70. No laughing matter - Joe, Wyoming, 38

We took the family to Florida for Christmas three years ago. I rented a condo with a private pool, even. Two days after we get there, I hear this screaming from the pool. My youngest kid, age 5, jumped into the pool, right onto one of those "diving sticks." I spent Christmas Eve in the hospital, trying to get a plastic stick out of my five-year-old's ass. Worst part is, I can't tell this story to any of the family because they laugh so much. It wasn't fucking funny!

69. Alone and miserable in paradise - Kris, Guam, Age 22

My fiancee just left, and I just recently found out the baby she was carrying wasn't mine. She's now happy with her new boyfriend. I'm stuck in this tropical paradise alone and miserable during Christmas, wondering what the hell went wrong. New Years will be worse, because our wedding day was supposed to be January 1st. Then January 3rd is my birthday, which I will also spend alone while my ex-fiancee is out enjoying her new life.

68. Bitch spent all my money - Manny, New York, Age 30

For Christmas of 1999 my wife left me alone to go see her family out of state. She was gone for over two weeks, and spent over $2,000 buying stuff for her and her family. I didn't get anything. I had ramen on Christmas day. I was alone for New Years too. She only called me to tell me she'd spent all her money and needed more. Bitch. Now, she's gonna do it again this year.

67. Parents spent Christmas money on bingo - Anonymous, New Brunswick, Canada, Age 20

My grandmother came down from Ontario and made my mom and dad spend all their fucking money at BINGO. Now we're not getting our $200 like promised. Plus my chunky grandmother keeps reminding me how fat I am. Nice Christmas this is going to be. I wish she would only come down in June.

66. My family is crazy (12/1/02) - Fred, Ohio, 23

My psychotic family once again has decided they all need to run my life and that I should help all of them with all their damn dumb problems. My overbearing father verbally assaults my deranged mother, who freaks out and decides that she is now a "childless mother." My dad then turns on me, saying that I'm a worthless f*ing piece of s* and I'll never amount to anything. My girlfriend of three years decides to make that statement true and stops talking to me. My aunt then goes insane, screaming to her kids, "You've been too bad and there'll be no Christmas this year." Then she disappears for three weeks. So I spend my Christmas at work, alone, depressed, and with an entire family full of people that are convinced that I've ruined their lives and they're going to get back at me for it. This is like the third year in a row now. Please God, let me die before next year.

65. Smells like Christmas spirit (12/1/02) - Anonymous, Washington, D.C., Age 37

The one fond memory that comes to mind is all of us at the dinner table during one of those horrible "holiday season" meals and one of our dogs came in, looked at us and proceeded to "lay a few eggs" while we ate. Then he sprayed urine all over the floor. Man, if I did that during Christmas my dad would've belted me, and all the dog got was put on a chain outside.

64. She forgot *again*? (12/1/02) - Robert, Bridgeton, ME, Age 18

All my life my grandmother has been asking me what I wanted for Christmas. I gladly told her months in advance so that I could be sure that she would have enough time to get it for me. When Christmas rolled around I would go with the rest of my family to open presents, hoping that I would get the gift that I had been waiting for all season, and to my dismay it would never be there. I later found out that she would ask us exactly what we wanted so that she could make sure that she did NOT get it for us. What a bitch.

63. Stung by Christmas (12/1/02) - Peter, New York, Age 15

Last year for Christmas, we got this big giant Christmas tree we cut down in the woods. When we got it home, we set it up and made it look nice. Then we went to sleep. I woke up like 10 minutes later to see bees circling the living room, because we didn't check the tree to see if it had anything in it. My dad is severely allergic to bee stings, so he died. My mom and me now live in an institute for the chronically insane, since my dad's death caused my mom to get suicidal, and I have to live with her. Life sucks!

62. Miserable only begins to describe (12/1/02) - Rene, Alberta, Canada Age 47

Christmas used to be my most favorite time of the year...until recently. My marriage of 17 years ended last year. I have 2 beautiful daughters age 14 and 16. Now that I live alone, and don't share everyday family things with my children, it has become painful. I can really see why people end their lives at this time of the year. Personally I feel numb and can no longer get into the spirit of Christmas. It's a cruel world and there is no end to the pain. Miserable only begins to paint a picture of what Christmas is now like for me.

61. Caught fiancee with boss (12/1/02) - Anonymous, Millstream, MD, Age 29

Christmas 2000: I invited my fiancee to my company party but she could not attend because she said she had to work late. I told her that I wasn't going to go unless she would go with me. So I told her I was just going to go to the local bar with the guys. After having a few drinks, I decided I should go to the party have some food and free drinks. When I walked in I was stunned to see my fiancee in a silk dress, seated at a table for two in the back WITH MY BOSS!

60. What she *really* wanted (12/1/02) - Mike, Phoenix, AZ, Age 51

In 1973, my wife, whom I adored, had just finished opening the last Christmas gift I had bought her, which was a fur coat that set me back about $1,200. She turned to me and instead of saying, "Thanks," she said, "I did not get what I REALLY wanted." I asked her what that was and she replied, "A divorce." She got that before the next Christmas came around.

59. What to do with his present? (12/1/02) - John, Covington, LA, Age 44

As far as Christmas is concerned, this has got to be the worst yet. My uncle dies last week, my Mom goes out of town to get away from it all (he was her only sibling), no one in my family returns my phone calls, and one of my friends was buried on Christmas Eve. What to do with his present?

58. Christmas dinner breakdown (12/1/02) - Joshua, Virginia, Age 20

1999 was my worst Christmas. I was failing school, in anguish about a breakup with my girlfriend, and facing potentially serious health problems. I was in a major depression the whole year, but when Christmas rolled around, it just got worse because everyone expected me to be happy. God forbid I didn't show the adequate amount of Christmas cheer. I held everything in until it all exploded out of me at Christmas dinner in front of my whole family. Right before I was called down to have dinner, I was praying to God to take my pain away. I was a total mess, and now I had to try to put my happy face on. I sat staring at my plate, desperately trying to hold myself together. Eventually my mom asked if I was sick, and that's all it took. I broke down into tears and basically had a nervous breakdown right there. No one finished their meal. I calmed myself down enough to open presents with the rest of them and everyone pretended nothing had happened. It's forever remembered as the Christmas where Josh lost it.

57. Close to the edge (12/1/02)  - Bob, Southern U.S., Age 33

I traveled home to the snowy northlands again to be with my family last Christmas, and to remind myself why I don't move back home. My mother has come out of the closet and says that she is bisexual, and has moved her girlfriend in with her; her husband is not against it. Twice as much ass for him, is my guess. My younger brother got home from prison a few weeks prior to Christmas. He's still got a prison mentality, and frequently gives you a googly-eyed look like he could kill you for your wallet, then snaps out of it and tries to be pleasant. Our sister is home from out East, and tries to start fights so that she can take her mind off of being unemployed. All this coupled with the stress of traveling during the holidays after the bombings was just about enough to push me over the edge.

56. Useless piece of crap (12/1/02) - Daniel, Washington, Age 17

All I got for Christmas one year was a chin-up bar that I can't even use because it doesn't fit in the damn door.

55. I know things will be bad tomorrow (12/1/02) - Anonymous, Australia, Age 15

I really hate Christmas. Every year I am in tears over one thing or another. Two years ago my mum accused my dad of having an affair on Christmas Eve. They screamed, and he ended up sleeping on the couch. That was pretty bad, though this year, two days before Christmas, we had yet another family fight. This one was because of me, apparently. More tears have been shed, and my father is threatening to leave us. My sister seems to have some mental problem where she just can't seem to make it through the day without fighting with someone. So I just know things will be bad tomorrow.

54. Family disowned me (12/1/02) - Joey, North Dakota, Age 14

A week before Christmas I got in trouble and got arrested for the night. The next day, my mom called the cops on me for harassment, which was a bunch of bullshit. My parents disowned me and told me never to come back, so I went to live with a friend. Two days before Christmas I found out that I couldn't spend Christmas with my friend's family and I also got arrested for assault. I got home late the night before Christmas, and the next morning went to my family's Christmas dinner only to find that I was not welcome presents, no Merry Christmas, not a damn thing. So I sat outside the door thinking of where to go. My grandma called the cops on me and while I was sitting outside a cop tackled me, cuffed me, and took me to jail AGAIN. Later I found out my grandma and the rest of my "family" told the cops that they didn't know me and that I was threatening to kill them....Christmas sucks, life sucks, and I can't do a damn thing about it.

53. Mom I'm home (11/16/02) - Bryan, Lynwood, WA, Age 17

When I was 14 I was on one of my random meth binge/disappearing tangents.  Christmas Eve I came home to tell my family that I was sorry and that I was going to quit doing drugs.  Only to find out that they had changed the locks on the doors and left a note denying that I was their son.  On my way to my friends house I was nearly hit by a car and sprained my ankle avoiding it.  I hate fucking Christmas.

52. They said I was only trying to get attention (12/23/01) - Jenna, New York, Age 25

I've had a problem with depression since I was very young. When I was 12 I was having such a severe depressive episode that I could barely think. All I wanted to do was lie on my bed and stare at the ceiling. My family forced me to partake of the Christmas cheer. They said I was only trying to get attention. So I spent the entire Christmas dealing with such phrases as "you're so spoiled," "if I had a child like you I would beat you till you wouldn't be able to sit down for weeks," or my favorite "you're an ungrateful child" (this was in response to my apathy concerning presents). Because of the lack of sympathy or concern for what I was feeling, I ended up cutting my wrists the day after Christmas.

51. Then she fell in the snow (12/23/01) - Linda, Spokane, Age 54

This really isn't a very good Christmas for me. I take care of my parents. Mom has Multiple Sclerosis and dad has Tourette's. About two weeks ago Mom burned her leg on a space heater because she couldn't feel the heat. Then she got a urinary tract infection. Then she fell in the snow. Then dad dropped her and left her on the floor half an hour. Then she got an upper respiratory infection. Then I lost her silvadene to treat her burn. Then dad's brother sent $500 to give to a family that needs a hand up for Christmas and dad said to me he wasn't going to send any to my daughter (an honor student and hard worker) because "she's shacked up with a nigger" and sent it instead to my niece, who is on welfare and has three kids by three different men. Then I had to work Christmas Eve AND Christmas Day and my company doesn't even give any holiday pay. I didn't even have time or energy to fix Christmas dinner.

50. No Santa?!?!?! (12/23/01) - Anonymous, North America, Age 25

My worst Christmas was 1989, the year I found out that there was no Santa. And I only found out because my parents didn't have enough money to buy me a present, but had enough for my older brother. I felt like I must have been adopted or something (unfortunately I wasn't). I have since spent Christmases in a bar getting drunk, at work being bored, with NOTHING to do, on the road, or so stoned/drunk/fucked up I can't remember them...

49. Out the back door again (12/23/01) - Mike, Canada, Age 21

My dad got drunk on rum and got in a fight with my mom. He got so pissed he threw the Christmas tree out the back door down the fire escape, then passed out in the middle of the floor. Mom went down and got the tree to set it back up. Dad came to and saw the tree. "I thought I threw that fucking tree out" he said, and then he grabbed the tree and pitched it out the back door again.

48. Just another dirty smoker (12/23/01) - Anonymous, Washington, Age 23

My dad died of lung cancer when I was 14, 6 days before Christmas. Ever since then, some asshole has anonymously sent me a pack of Marlboros as a Christmas present every year. If I ever find out who the dickhead in question is, I think I'll kill him. In retrospect, I figure I'm better off with the old man dead. He was just another dirty smoker anyway. Smokers are just another brand of drug addict, a liability to society. Trashy, smelly losers that they are. 

47. Cheap ass family (12/23/01) - Anonymous, UK, Age 17

For the 17th Christmas in a row I woke up to a cold, silent house. I had to stay upstairs all day as it was zero degrees Celsius downstairs and my mom forbade me to go out as she said it "would be dangerous with all the drunks". As usual there was no food, no gas, no cash, no tree and no presents.

46. BJs from the secretary (12/23/01) - Mike, Chicago, IL, Age 19

When I was 15 years old, my dad came home on Christmas eve, after getting wasted at some seedy downtown bar, and announced to the whole family that he was getting blowjobs from his secretary. My mom ran to their room crying, and he ended up sleeping on the couch that night. The next morning, my mom took my sister and me to church, without my dad. When we got back home, he wasn't there. I never heard from him again.

45. BJs from the secretary (12/23/01) - Matt, San Diego, Age 24

About 4 days before Christmas I moved to San Diego with my beautiful girlfriend of three years. Within two days of being there, she fell for the guy that lived upstairs. On the third day she informed me that she would be moving in with him. I got to spend most of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day listening to them fuck. I couldn't escape the apartment because I was awaiting callbacks for prospective jobs. All I could do for those two days was stew in my own misery listening to my girlfriend moan for hours on end. I even heard her scream out for him to fuck her in the ass - something she would never let me do after three years of being together.

44. Cousin Love (12/23/01) - Bick, Midwest, Age 29

I was in love with my cousin in 1998.  On Christmas morning I was going to see her for the first time in six months.  I had gotten a hair cut just a few days before.  It looked horrible.  So I decided to wear a nifty hat that day.  When she arrived she immediately snatched the hat from my head and saw my bad hair.  From that moment forward she called me "Dumb Hair."  I don't know why.  It's not like my hair lacked intelligence.  If you ask me, she's the dumb hair.  I will never forget that Christmas.  Let this be a lesson to you.  If you're secretly in love with your cousin, some how or another she's going to end up calling you "Dumb Hair."

43. Boys in Tights (12/23/01) - Petie, Age 35

It was the last week of school and I was 15 yrs. old. My teacher told us if we dressed up as elves we would get extra credit and since I was failing my mom made me dress up as an elf. I was wearing the full suit the tight stockings, shoes, and everything. I told my mom I wasn't going to wear this stupid outfit to school but she said I had to. She grabbed my hand and walked me to my class so she knew I didn't change my outfit. Some of the guys told me I had nicer legs than the girls and this is why this is my worst Christmas ever.

42. A Picture Instead of my Daughter (12/23/01) - Tonia, Tucson, AZ, Age 30

In December of 1995, I had my baby girl. She was born with a really bad heart and almost died. I worked with her, the doctors, and many others so that I could get her home. In March of 1998 the state of Michigan, where I lived at that time, decided they would terminate my parental rights. They said I wasn't trying hard enough to get her home. Now every Christmas I celebrate with a picture instead of my daughter.

41. The other woman (12/23/01) - Anonymous, Minnesota, Age 25

Christmas of 1998 I received an email Christmas eve from my fianc�'s 'other woman'. Turned out she found out we were engaged and decided to get even. Turned out he had been fucking her since we started dating. When he turned up that Christmas night to exchange gifts, I sure as hell had one gift for him.

40. Come over son (10/28/01) - Ryan, Orlando, Age 13

Last Christmas (2000) my father gave me and my mother a call. I hadn't spoken to my father in about 6 years. He told us that he has moved to our area. My Christmas was looking very good, until we went to see my father at his new house we came to find that he had shot himself in the head. Christmas sux and life sux.

39. Santa's little helper (10/28/01) - Felicity, Australia, Age 26

This one Christmas my dad bought one of those reindeer heads for the dog, which you put round the dogs neck to make him look like Rudolph or some fucking thing.  Anyway, the dog managed to knock over some Christmas candles wearing it and set itself on fire.  The dog then ran around the house squealing in pain and setting fire to curtains in around four rooms.  We were unable to contain the fire and the house ended up burning down.  My dog now has third degree burns all over its body and can barely walk and we all live with my Mum's Sister who's a bitch. 

38. Got home early (10/28/01) - Matt, Ohio, Age 19

I'd been going to college out of state, and trying to maintain a long-distance relationship with my high school girlfriend. Since I got to leave school a week earlier for Christmas break, I decided to go directly to her house to surprise her. It was a big surprise. I saw her car outside and decided to let myself in. I just figured that I'd find her sitting at home, maybe studying for her finals; I didn't. I walked into her room to find her with one of my former best friends. Needless to say, I was devastated. When she saw me, the slut even asked me to join in!!!! All I could do was run right out and rush home as fast as I could. It was the worst Christmas break ever. But they got what they deserved when she became pregnant three months later, and as a bonus, it wasn't even his.

37. Did you turn out the lights? (10/28/01) - Sean, Salt Lake City, Age 17

When I was 13 my father did not turn off the Christmas lights on the tree Christmas Eve night. And when we all went to bed, we awoke to the smell of smoke. I got out of the house, so did my mom. But my father was killed by the fire.

36. Christmas of 1999 I spent in the hospital (11/19/00) - Aron, Michigan, Age 20

So yeah, two days before Christmas of 1998 my girlfriend of a year told me she didn't think she loved me anymore, after we got into our first big fight of our relationship.  I proceeded, over the course of the next year, to attempt suicide, get institutionalized, enjoy high school, and deal with my ex-girlfriend, whom I felt was my best friend (ie still in love with her), while she obsessed over the guy she dumped me for (who I introduced her to).  Xmas of 1999 I spent in the hospital with a particularly nasty case of the influenza and a nice side-order of pneumonia.  She came over and I spent all day miserable on a couch thinking about how much I loved her.  I think I've spoken to her 3 times since then.  Bitch

35. Dad went through the windshield (8/15/00) - Maud, Georgia, Age 30

My parents were in a car accident on Christmas Eve. My dad went through the windshield. We spent Christmas Day in the trauma center praying he wouldn't die. He died a week later when his aorta, which had been torn in the impact, ruptured.

34. Car stall (8/15/00) - Joel, California, Age 24

The Christmas of 1990, my mom and I went shopping and my car stalled. The guy behind us honked, and as I rolled down the window to wave him around us, my mom thought I was rolling it down to give him the finger. She grabbed my hair and pulled it really hard, dragging me down to her lap, as she hissed "drive", not realizing we were stalled. Once we got back to the house, I became irate. We started screaming and yelling at each other, eventually moving onto the front lawn as all the neighbors stared. She threw my presents out the door. Then my uncle came outside and said I was ungrateful, and that if my grandmother had a heart attack and died, it would be my fault.

33. That acrid smell (8/15/00) - Anonymous, Canada, Age 42

When i was 9, my dad came home on Christmas eve and told my mom that he had been fucking his secretary for 2 years. he then preceded to pee all over the tree, the presents and in the fireplace, filling the den with the smell of vaporized piss.. My mom, mad as hell, said nothing and walked to her room. She then told me and my brother to go outside. We sat out there and started to make a snowman until the shots rang out.. Mom had shot dad 12 times in the back and then walked out and got in the car and drove away. We never saw her again. Every time I'm in the sauna at the spa, and someone has pissed on the rocks that day.. its still reminds me of the day my dad peed and got killed.

32. My wet, cheap clothes (7/13/00) - Ken, California, Age 42

I had dropped out of college and was living on my own for the first time, working as a DJ in Florida. As the newbie, I of course drew the worst shifts, including Christmas Day. My girlfriend had just dumped me because I'd quit school, and I'd let the dirty dishes and laundry pile up for weeks. On my way to work that Xmas, I stuffed a load of reeking socks, shirts, underwear and jeans in a washer at the Laundromat a few blocks from the radio station. We were having a heat wave in Florida that winter, and the air conditioning in the station had broken down. I spent the next hour sweating buckets while I played "Frosty the Snowman" and other Xmas crap, trying to sound cheery on the air. At the top-of-the- hour news break, I rushed back to the Laundromat to throw my load in the dryer. Someone had stolen all of my wet, cheap, only clothes... on Christmas Day.

31. Praise Jehovah (7/13/00) - Deena, Canada, Age 24

My worst Christmas was when I was 10 years old, and my mom and step-dad told us we wouldn't be having Christmas anymore, because they decided to become Jehovah's Witnesses, and they don't celebrate Christmas.  That sucked.  Thank god I was able to move out of the house and get a mind of my own. 

30. All the neighbors stared (7/13/00) - DM, Seattle, Age 38

When I was 11, my alcoholic dad tried making his own wine because he thought that would be cheaper than buying it. He started drinking it too soon, while it was still fermenting on Xmas eve, and got sick and puked all over our presents and the tree. All the time he was talking about how much he loved us. Then he passed out on the Xmas tree. Later my mother dumped all the half-finished wine that was left into the gutter in front of our house while he screamed at her from the porch, saying what a bitch she was. All the neighbors stared out their windows on Xmas eve at the freaks with the fucked-up drunk father who ruined their Xmas.

29. She ruined that too (6/2/00) - Anonymous, Canada, Age 24

My Father came home with presents Christmas morning. After waking us all up, he found another man in my step mothers' bed. After beating this man to a pulp and kicking him out of the house, my evil step mother flew into a psychotic rage. After trashing the house and any remnant of Christmas cheer, we tried to have dinner in among the broken dishes. She ruined that too. Step-bitch pulled the turkey out of the oven and jumped all over it. My brothers and I went to bed hungry, angry and picking out turkey bones and glass out of our feet

28, So I spent Christmas Even alone (6/2/00) - Anonymous, SC, Age 23

I dated a girl for about 6 months, we really hit it off.  I fell in love, and we talked about moving in together and eventually getting married.  A few weeks before Christmas she told me she didn't think she was was making me happy and left me.  I was completely destroyed. On Christmas Eve I phoned up her apartment, hoping to wish her a Merry Christmas and hear her voice again, but there was no answer.  I found out later she was with some guy..the guy she left me for.  So I spent Christmas Eve alone, thinking about the girl I loved being with some other guy.

27. The worst of all possible worlds (12/29/99) - Joshua, Oregon, Age 29

When I was 15, my dad got so drunk on Christmas Eve that he took out a whip and started threatening me. My mom ran away with all of our presents because she was so scared, and the next day, I learned she was killed in a late-night car accident. A day later my dad was put in a mental institution and my brother committed suicide. It was the worst Xmas anyone could have.

26. Cookies and milk (12/29/99) - Anonymous, Age 38

I'm a 38 year-old three times divorced loser who has decided to change his life around for the year 2000. After my third marriage dissolved because my wife was a drug addicted whore who would fuck anything for a hit, I would go to bars, drink beer and watch silicone enhanced strippers shove their beavers in my face for a dollar. I ended up ballooning to 350 pounds. After seeing a doctor I have managed to lose 50 pounds and am still losing. I visited my folks and we handed out gifts.. after I spent a wad of cash on my brother and sister-in-law and their seven screaming snot-nosed kids, imagine my misery when for the fifth goddamned year in a row they gave me food for Christmas-- not just any food, sugary butter cookies. And not just a plate but a whole fucking garbage tin full of COOKIES and CANDY! What do they want me to do die of a fucking coronary? Do they want me to go into a diabetic coma? Jeezus I want to die.

25. The perfect gift (12/29/99) - Anonymous, Midwest, Age 51

My mother threw our lighted, decorated Christmas tree through the front storm door because my sister and I gave her gifts that weren't on her Christmas list.  We returned the items for a full refund to help dad pay for her stay in the hospital's mental ward.

24. Merry Christmas everyone (12/22/99) - Philip, Chandler, Age 15

On December 24th 1997, after smoking crack & drinking bourbon for 3 days before the holiday, my Dad finally came home. He spent about an hour arguing w/my mother and calling me and my sister names (he called me dildo & my sister he referred to as shit fer brains.) He then proceeded to load up all of our presents into the flatbed of his El Camino. After all the presents were in the car he walked to the middle of the lawn and took a gigantic shit, while saying merry christmas you bloodsucking whore ( I assume he was talking to my mother).

23. Child size (12/22/99) - Nicole, Tulsa, Age 32

My father left my mother when I was 2 days old and after the divorce I only saw him once in my life after that. For Christmas he would send me clothes that were the size of my age. For instance if I was 7 I got something in a size 7. The clothes never fit and always sucked.

22. A new life for Christmas (12/19/99) - Nate, Boston, Age 22's Xmas time once again...and my life sucks! My mom is a drunk, my dad is a dead beat, my dog just died. My girl has the clap from fucking around on me and I know it wasn't me because I am impotent. My Xmas wish.....? A new fucking life!

21. Take the tree (12/19/99) - Dave, Age 34

This summer my wife left me and kicked me out of the house. After a couple of months she decided to move in with her new boyfriend, and all my furniture (she took everything but the dust). Last week, as I was sitting on the floor of the old house she called me up and told me she forgot to take the Christmas decorations and tree - she wanted to know if I could leave the house so she could come back for them.

20. Service with a smile (12/16/99) - Anonymous, Michigan, Age 26

This XMas will definitely be contender. I'll probably be standing at the register all night dispensing customer service with a smile to total and complete assholes while my car gets buried under five feet of snow out in the parking lot. I will then come home to my empty house and fall asleep face down on the TV-room couch. It will get worse come New Years, though... as the lights and the heat go out but I'll probably have to go in to work anyway. Then, Armageddon will begin as the legions of Satan battle the legions of Christ, and maybe I'll get to go home early that night.

19. Better to be a Jew (12/16/99) - Tim, Minneapolis, Age 28

I don't think that there is any one Christmas but a simple series of fights, arguments, lousy football games and more fighting. There were individual incidents like puking on grandma's staircase and the couple of years when Mom and Aunt Sharon weren't talking to each other. Of course most Christmases sucked simply because the family tradition designated that all relatives die in November. So on average every 4th "let's-pretend-to-like-each-other-this-year" gathering had someone with a very good excuse for not attending -- lucky bastard. Anyhow now for relatives who haven't moved away or died it's just my mom and my fundamentalist Christian Aunt Sharon and they aren't talking to each other at the moment. This is good because I'm converting to Judaism and hope to avoid Christmas entirely from now on.

18. Cook that egg (12/16/99) - Chris, Salt Lake City, Age 35

When I was 16 some friends and I went to this Christmas party.  At the party they were serving some eggnog.  I had some.  The nog tasted fine.  But it had salmonella in it.  I spent xmas sick as a dog. 

17. PB&J (12/16/99) - Michael, AZ, Age 27

Christmas 1996:  I got so drunk I covered myself in peanut butter and started screaming, "Where's that fat Santa with the jelly, we need a sandwich bitch!"  Needless to say, I will be spending Christmas alone again.

16. Santa went AWOL (12/14/99) - Bruce, Scotland, Age 45

My Dad gave me an empty box and said it was the Action Man (GI Joe) Deserter Kit.

15. Christmas shopping (12/14/99) - Marv, Columbus, OH, Age 23

When I was 18 I had a job working as a clerk at a 7-11.  On Christmas Eve I got held up and the robber tied me up, gagged me, and shot me in the shoulder.  The store was supposed to be closed for the next two days, so I was tied up in the back room with a bullet wound for almost 3 days.  A week later, when I was on may way home from the hospital, I was in a wreck with a semi on a rural road and was pinned in my burning car for over two hours. 

14. To your health (12/14/99) - Duane, Maryland, Age 30

Christmas Eve, 1987.  My mother announces to our family that she only has weeks to live.  Family goes into tragic preparations mode, and Christmas is ruined.  Two weeks later, my mother reveals that it was just a ploy for attention.  I fucking hate Christmas.

13. Gift of life (12/14/99) - Bob, Phoenix, Age 31

I always hated Christmas as a child, because it meant that we had to go over to one of my white trash family's homes and play with my trashy cousins.  My uncle Mike would get drunk and rant at his wife and kids, uncle Ronnie's slutty daughters would sneak out back to smoke, uncle Bruce would get pissy and ground his kids to their rooms, my Grandma would talk about how none of her sons married anyone worth a damn, then my Dad would decide that me and my brothers were the cause of all the fighting and we would go home, where he would beat our asses, and go fight with my mom, and end up slapping her around a bit. I've decided not to have children so as not to put them through a childhood like one I had, but now my wife bitches about me always being so bitter at Christmas time.

12. Close encounters (12/14/99) - Shaun, Oregon, Age 29

When I was 15 and my brother was 17, we received Christmas presents from my slightly disturbed, but well intentioned grandmother.  The first present was a crocheted UFO made from yarn & an old Miracle Whip container with crocheted finger-puppet aliens (for all ten fingers) packed snugly inside.

The second present was a pink and blue set of 'zip-up slippy-foot' pajamas that actually fit our sturdy teenage frames.  We know they fit, because we were forced to pose for several memorable pictures standing side-by-side in our 'zip-up slippy-foot' pajamas while ten annoying aliens dangled from our fingers.

The aliens were bad enough but the pajamas truly disturbed me.  I'm not sure what's more disturbing:  The fact that my grandmother bought her teenage grandsons 'zip-up slippy-foot' pajamas, or the fact that some company, somewhere makes 'zip-up slippy-foot' pajamas for teenagers.

11. Daddy dearest (12/13/99) - EAS, Larkspur, Age 18

When I was about 6, I woke up on Xmas morning and my dad wasn't even home.  Turned out he went out with his buddies like he does every year and got completely shit-faced on really expensive wine.  They must've had about 12 bottles at about $100 per and he didn't even have enough money to get me a decent gift, just a bunch of old corks.  Not only that but he woke up his buddy's whole neighborhood when he was laying on the front lawn, half passed out yelling "FUCK HER IN THE SHITTER."  His buddy's little kids woke up, saw him on the lawn and kind of freaked.  All their Mom could say was "Santa's had an accident."

10. Ties that bind (12/13/99) - Philip, San Francisco, Age 23

I spend every Christmas with my brother and his family.  Even though he lives only a few miles away, his wife is disgusted by me so I only see him once a year.  He has a good job a pretty wife and two smart kids and I work fast food and haven't gotten any since high school.

9. The song of a child (12/13/99) - Little Drummer Girl, Age 26

When I was a child from the age of about 4 till I was nine my cousin and I were made to dress up in velveteen dresses and sing xmas songs Shirley Temple style. I'm still in therapy. 

8. Make an offering (12/9/99) - Judy, Memphis, Age 25

I was a little tipsy on xmas eve.  I threw up during the candlelight service during the quiet time all over the lady in front of me.  It reeked beer and cheese, it made me puke even more.  The worst part about it was that I forgot to change my baby's diaper and things just reeked even worse.  I cried so hard, and got up and slipped and fell on the lady I threw up on.  Then, the diaper came undone and soaked into the material of the pew. 

7. Bitch... (12/9/99) - J, New Jersey, Age 34

My sister received a Skipper Doll for Christmas when I was about five years old.  I decide to enhance Skipper by adding a couple custom touches.  It only took a few minutes and an indelible marker to add a beard, mustache and very heavy eye brows.  My sister was appalled.  And for the last 30 Christmases without fail, my sister has whined, complained and bitched about the Skipper doll that I ruined.  Oh, the precious memories of Christmas.

6. I want a gun for Christmas (12/8/99) - Anonymous, Age 29

I hate Christmas. Last year I was getting divorced and moved out on Christmas Eve. Since then I've been stuck living with my mom. My company went out of business so I lost my job 2 weeks ago and have no money. My girlfriend is two timing me and I'm out of cigarettes. All I want for Christmas is a gun so I can shoot myself in the head and be done with this shit.

5. Don't get mad, get Glad (12/8/99) - James, Saratoga Springs, NY, Age 18

When I was little the day after Christmas my father got mad that we had left all our new toys on the floor.  He was so angry that he went out back, got a snow shovel and shoveled all our toys (old and new) into a trash bag and put it out on the curb.

4. Man of God (12/8/99) - Jacob, Palm Beach, FL, Age 30

When I was thirteen, my parents decided to take us to church on Christmas Eve. Dad wound up yelling at the minister during the service, calling him a "fucking pansy", a "goddamn imbecile", and a "waste of living flesh".  This was because when handing him a lit candle (it was a candlelight service), the minister had accidentally spilled a slight bit of hot wax on my dad.

He was so acidic and mean that the minister actually wound up crying.  So, we listened to the very beginning of the story of Jesus' birth through sobbing and sniffling.  After about half an hour (it was supposed to be a two-hour service), my father said, "I've had enough of this bullshit.  Let's go."

3. Mom, watch out! (12/8/99) - Scott, Bismarck, Age 33

When I was a small child, my dad would go out and cut down our Christmas tree. When I was 8, Dad climbed up a 25' evergreen and cut off the top 7' for our tree. Well the tree fell the wrong way and serious hurt dad. He is now confined to a bed. Mom and my two sisters where forced into prostitution to support the family. 

2. Play things (12/4/99) - Jack, Arkansas, Age 48

When I was young my family was so poor what we boys got for Christmas was a new pair of jeans with the pockets cut out. That way we had something to wear and something to play with....

1. Santa's gonna get it (12/3/99) - Jase, Boston, MA, Age 25

When I was six, my drunken father threatened to blow Santa away with a shotgun if we weren't good. He said - "You little bastards better straighten up and fly right or I will get my shotgun and wait at the foot of the chimney for that fat fuck to come down and I will blow his head off." He was swaying as he said this to us. We didn't have a chimney. 


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