If you don't celebrate Thanksgiving

How much judgement and unpleasantness is it likely to attract to decline celebrating thanksgiving? I know people get mad when you start decorating for Christmas before it, so, how important is it?

realsocialskills said:

The thing where people complain about decorating for Christmas before Thanksgiving isn’t necessarily about Thanksgiving per se. It’s sometimes mostly about the fact that Christmas makes all of December really stressful and expensive. People don’t want Christmas to expand and make October and November equally expensive and stressful.

If Thanksgiving is important to your family, they will probably be angry or at least very annoyed if you decide not to celebrate it with them. (That doesn’t mean it’s wrong to decide not to. It’s your choice, and everyone with a family sometimes does things that annoy or anger relatives.)

If you just personally don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, most people won’t care. Some people will probably be obnoxious and judgmental, but probably not in dangerous ways. 

If you speak in a way that suggests that you *object* to celebrating Thanksgiving, that will seriously offend some people. Eg: if you say one of these things:

  • “Why is gluttony something to celebrate?”
  • “Thanksgiving is racist.”
  • “Thanksgiving? You mean murdered factory farmed turkey day?”
  • “I have better things to do.”
  • “I only celebrate real holidays.”

(Note: It’s not necessarily always *wrong* to offend people or object to the way they observe a holiday. It’s just worth knowing that if you object to something that someone else considers to be an important part of their culture, they are likely to be seriously offended, no matter how legitimate your objections are.)

If you say something like this, people are less likely to be offended:

  • “No, I don’t have plans.”
  • “I’m actually planning to sit on my couch and watch every Star Wars movie.”
  • “Actually, we don’t celebrate holidays in my religion.”
  • “I’m not really a Thanksgiving person.”

tl;dr It’s ok if you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving; celebrating holidays is a personal choice. Some people might be obnoxious about it, but most people won’t care that much unless you’re related to them, or you say/imply that they shouldn’t celebrate it either.