I come from a large family; six brothers and one living sister. For the past 2-3 years, we've been getting together for the holidays at a church in my parent's hometown. We try to take all of the stress away from my parents by telling them no gifts, we will take care of all the food, etc. but I feel my parents are still getting pretty stressed out.
I live 2 1/2 hours away and am a teacher, so I am able to spend a couple of days at my parents' house around the holidays. I do have 2 cats, so I can't be gone longer than that.
What I'm seeing is that I don't think my parents are really enjoying themselves. My dad is hard of hearing and having so many people around (about 35 when all of the grandchildren are included) is hard on him. My mom gets so confused because she cannot remember anything, even if it is written down and put on the fridge. She is still trying to buy gifts and cook but she can't remember what she bought, can't remember she made a list (actually she had 3 lists going at Thanksgiving, but couldn't remember she had one in her hand :) and can't remember how to make even familiar recipes that are written down. Telling her no gifts and we'll take care of all the food has no effect on her, because she can't remember that we told her that!
Anyway, my question is....should I step up and tell my brothers and sister that we cannot have an extended family celebration anymore? My mom hides her frustration pretty well when everyone is together, but I see it during the days I am there.