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No Holiday Cheer for Wife Left Out of Gift Exchange

DEAR ABBY: I had hoped last Christmas would be different, but it turned out to be the same as every other Christmas for the past 14 years. My husband and I always go to his parents' for Christmas dinner, followed by the exchange of gifts. In all the years I've been married to their son, my in-laws have never once included me in the gift exchange.

When we started our family, they were good about giving a gift to each grandchild -- and always to my husband -- but never to me. Trust me, Abby, it's not the gift I care about, it's the fact that they go through this routine in my husband's presence and he never says one word about it.

How should I handle it next year? If I speak up, it could cause a family feud, and dissension between my husband and me. Must I simply resign myself to the fact that this is the way it is? Please tell me what you think. -- EXTREMELY REJECTED IN NEW JERSEY

DEAR EXTREMELY REJECTED: For your in-laws to exclude you at Christmas is cruel, insensitive and rude. For your husband to let this go on year after year and say nothing is spineless.

Tell him that unless you can be assured that you'll be treated with the respect you deserve next Christmas, it will be your last with his family -- and you and the children will make other plans.

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