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Getting Through The Family Dinner

We’ve all been there, done that.

Having to sit through the big family Thanksgiving dinner will all the relatives that seem to like to get into your business, but keeps theirs on the low. It’s almost like you’re a target and the second they see you, they’re ready to aim and shoot! Let me tell you, they won’t stop until they’ve hit the target and struck a nerve. Look at these questions below and see if any of them sound familiar to you.

“When are you graduating?”

“Are you working?”

“What do you plan on doing after college?”

“Are you going to college?”

“When are you getting married”

“You’re not pregnant yet?!”

“Are you ok? You look like you’re gaining weight.”

Do any of these sound familiar to you? Hopefully, I didn’t have anyone running into a corner in the fetal position from the memories. The real question is, can we get through these family dinners without ending up needing an entire bottle of wine? The answer is yes…hopefully. Just to be clear, if you’re someone who can easily clapback, the answer to aunt Carol asking if you’re still single is NOT to ask her if she’s on her third marriage. Granted, some family members do need to be given a little talking too.

At the end of the day, we all just want to stuff our faces, enjoy some nice family time, and take naps afterward. So, below will be some short quick tips to try and get through the dreadful interrogation stage of family dinners. May they help you get through the holidays!

1. Take deep breaths. First and foremost, if you get irritated then just try to breathe before you lose your mind.

2. Avoid it if you can. If you can avoid getting asked those questions, then I’d try my best.

3. Answer without answering. For instance, if someone asks what you plan on doing after college, you can say something like “Whatever the Lord has intended for me.”

4. Turn the attention away. After avoiding giving a direct answer, you can turn the attention onto someone else. Since aunt Carol wants to know about your life, try (respectfully) asking about hers.

5. Giving a little talk. I feel like these aren’t too effective for the older generation. They sometimes think you’re just being too sensitive and it goes in one ear and right out the other, but try having an adult conversation of why they shouldn’t be asking you those questions. For example, a good time to try this is if you’re a woman and asked when you’re going to get pregnant. You should never ask a woman that. Trying to get it through their head may be a slight headache but it’s worth the try.

Have you encountered the family dinner struggle? What’s something that gets you through the holiday family dinners?


  1. Sometimes I get asked these questions by strangers too. Strangers! And extended family of course. Luckily these events and get-together are mostly short-lived.

    It bugs me as well…. I used to question why family members ALWAYS ask me about school. Is there seriously nothing else interesting to talk about?

  2. These questions are the worst! They happen at every family gathering and I know my extended family means well but still… These are all great suggestions for how to deal and get through these awkward and (very) personal questions. I like the changing the focus on to them tactic. I’ve noticed people LOVE talking about themselves, so for me, that’s my go to!

    Excellent post and I hope it helps some people survive those dreaded Thanksgiving meal questions/conversations!

    Emily |

  3. I get asked these questions all the time, usually multiple times at a single, family event! They definitely get old, but I try to remind myself that they are trying to interact with me because they care. Although it’s hard. And repetitive. 🤷‍♀️Thanks for the tips!

  4. I haven’t had too many issues at family dinners, but I have been at other events where I have been asked these very pointed questions, especially by people who I am not even close to. When people ask me when I am having a baby, I respond with, “oh, we have (insert name of our cat).”

  5. So, … why can’t we ask Aunt Carol about her marriage? 😅 I feel like people just ask these types of questions just because they’re just what people do. They’ve put me on the defense and made me want to hide (which can absolutely be acceptable for some situations), but I want to try to be more on the offense and ask first and not be afraid to share something that isn’t the same old blah.

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