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How to Answer Awkward Questions from Your Family on Thanksgiving

At last! That much needed Thanksgiving vacation is just around the corner. This means your mom’s home-cooked meals, seeing all your family and … answering those annoying questions your relatives love to ask.

Don’t be surprised that your family will ask highly personal questions about your relationship, college life and future plans. “When are you getting married?” “How are your grades?” “How is the weight loss going?” And that’s just the beginning…

Your grandparents, aunts and uncles will ask about sensitive topics and you should be prepared to answer politely, in a humorous or even a bit sarcastic way. After all, this is a holiday and you don’t want to fight with your family. Here is some advice on how to cope with awkward questions you’re going to face.

1. Are You Dating Anyone?

Almost everyone around the table will want to hear the answer. Your relatives are worried that you might be lonely, they think that it is not OK if a young person like you isn’t in a relationship. Remember, you shouldn’t be embarrassed either you’re single or just don’t want to tell your family about a new boyfriend/girlfriend to avoid further questioning.

Answer #1: “I’m focused on my classes and getting a great job after graduation, so I don’t have time for dating.” This diplomatic response will persuade your family that you are serious about your education.

Answer #2: “I’m dating several people right now, just can’t decide who I like more.” Some humor will defuse a situation.

2. When Will You Start a Family?

Marriage? Kids? If this is not in your upcoming plans, better prepare a nice answer. Your parents look forward to organizing “a wedding of the year” and having grandchildren in the near future. Try not to upset them.

Answer #1: “I’m not sure that I’m ready to take on a responsibility of having a family.” It may lead to a lecture about how a great person you are and that you can cope with all the duties.

Answer #2: “Family? Are you kidding me? I’m a child myself.” It may cause some shock, but your relatives won’t ask about your personal life anymore.

Answer #3: “We are thinking about it right now. I’ll tell you more details later.” This answer will give some hope to your family, and probably they won’t ask about it till the next Thanksgiving.

3. What Do You Plan to Do After Graduation?

It is absolutely normal if you haven’t decided what you are going to do after college, and it is not necessary to tell your family about that. However, if you want to hear a piece of advice, just ask. No doubt, your relatives want to teach you how to live.

Answer #1: “I’m going to … (tell about your real plans).”

Answer #2: “I’m considering a few options: volunteer in a Buddhist Monastery in Nepal, catch fish in Alaska or … (insert other crazy options). Which one do you like better?”

4. When Can We Come Visit You?

Never! Never! Never! Surely, you don’t want your parents to talk your my roommates or listen to what you should change in your apartments.

Answer #1: “Let me think about it. I have a very busy schedule. I’ll tell you when I have some free time.” And then you can always tell your parents how busy you are at college.

Answer #2: “Visit me? Why? No, I’ll come home more often.”

5. Why Don’t You Eat Meat?

Oh, again… Because I’m a vegetarian!.. Even if you’ve told your family that you don’t eat meat for a hundred times, someone will ask you why you’re refusing from that delicious turkey.

Answer #1: “It is a personal choice and I hope that you can understand and support it.” It sounds like the answer of a grown-up, so your parents may be proud of you.

Answer #2: “I don’t eat tortured animals. Oh, let me show you one video and I suppose you also won’t eat meat.” But be careful, your relatives might hate you after that.

Meeting with relatives is fun until they start asking those awkward questions. However, with most families, it is inevitable. Just be prepared to hear these annoying questions and add some humor to your answers – it always saves the situation!