How to Survive Christmas with Your Family

How to Survive Christmas with Your Family

Surviving Christmas with your sanity still intact is increasingly becoming rare. How do you answer probing questions into your personal life? Even worse, how can you still swallow food when someone at the table starts up a heated political debate?

Are you just supposed to sit there and listen? Or are you going to do something about it, but also being extremely careful not to risk disrupting the supposed “merry” occasion?

Your family are those people that have been foisted on you – there's no escaping that. Gatherings with them can be downright excruciating when they start asking deeply personal questions about the state of your life and career. The state of the world isn't doing any favours either. So spending time with your family at Christmas these days is basically a slow drive towards madness.

But is there a way to stay sane during the few days you are with your family? Here are some tips:

1. Come up with a comeback

Christmas is the time to gather with people you don't necessarily get along with on normal days. There's your uncle who might think a certain politician is a “decent bloke” but you so vehemently disagree with his position. Your own mother might even have a thought or two about how the country is being run. Yes, it's quite a time for madness.

Comebacks can be a way of dealing with the issue but it won't always go down well. You just have no idea have a vague comment can be taken. While a comeback may silence the insensitive but chatty person, it can also cause the dreaded Christmas shouting session.

Your best bet for making a comeback is wishing that the hosts would shift the topic into something different. You might find it easier – although still slightly unbearable – to talk about your love life rather than the current political climate.

2. Enjoy the alcohol

This might be tricky if you don't drink but if you do, try to have some – but in moderation. Alcohol is a great tranquilliser; it even helps to enjoy your drink somewhere else where you aren't in range of conversations that could potentially enrage you.

3. Stay at a different accommodation

How best to avoid seeing that person you really don't want to see when you wake up? Sleep elsewhere. This becomes a problem when you can't afford it, but if you can, try to book accommodation elsewhere so you can avoid that awkward situation of greeting the person you just had a disagreement with in the morning.

You might even consider returning to your own home if you live nearby. This way, the torture of Christmas with the family ends in just a few hours.

The last thing you could do is to just let events slide by. Maybe you can even start mentally planning a holiday of your own so you have a perfectly good excuse for not coming around to the next one.

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