IT CAN BE a TOTAL dread TO RETURN home for the most jingly season of the year if you're the misfit OF the family. WE WENT THROUGH THE PAIN and the champaign and SUMMED UP OUR ADVICE IN THIS SURVIVAL GUIDE.
HOW TO COME HOME TO YOUR FAMILY AS A SINGLE GIRL
Bet your family won't even wait until the first glass is poured before they ask whether or not you already have a boyfriend. If you don't want to hear the speech about how every good guy will be married soon, here are some strategies to survive being single without pulling a Bridget Jones:
Shock and disappear. Tell them about your last week's hook-up in detail. Add that you can't remember if his name was Dewey (I'm not kidding) or Simon for extra dramatic effect. While your family is digesting this, take the nearest exit and make your escape to hit the bar around the corner.
Insanity. "What do you mean you haven't met Kevin yet? I bring him with me everywhere I go. I can't believe this. I even use the #us on every facebook picture with him." Go wild with your hand gestures and give them the crazy eyes look we know you've been practicing in the mirror. Use their confusion to go get yourself another drink.
The roll. Why don't you pull off a real Abbi-move and escape the situation in a very ladylike manner. We know you've been dying to use this (we know we have) and this family dinner finally presents the perfect opportunity. We always knew the endless repeats of Broad City would pay off sooner or later.
Find your buddy. Your buddy is someone in your family who is going through or has been through similar things. Your buddy understands you. Your buddy is your safe person. Find your buddy and chug that bottle of wine together.
- The guilt trip. Start crying and tap into their emotions. Start rambling about how you'll be alone forever and ever and ever. Ask for some money while you're at it, because let's face it Ben & Jerry's is freaking expensive. Chances are they'll give you some money just so you'd stop crying.
- Bore them to death. Start giving a rant about the capitalist society that's focused on monogamy and consuming stuff. Although this is actually a super interesting topic, chances are your uncle doesn't want to hear about it. Bet this political and sociological angle wasn't what they were expecting. Keep going until they finally give up and excuse themselves. If you're lucky, they'll remember not to ask you again next year, yay!
HOW TO COME HOME TO YOUR FAMILY AS AN UNEMPLOYED UNIVERSITY GRADUATE
As long as you're in school, you got the small talk during the holidays pretty much covered. Since most of it is about exams and how many of them you have. Once you’ve graduated, the conversation between the duck and the tiramisu should move over to the next topic: your job. Although when you studied Arts - instead of your sensible cousin The Engineer - there's a good chance there is no job. So here are some pointers on how to handle your big staring unemployment during the holidays:
- Declare that jobs are for the common people and you’re a woman of leisure know. Better know some facts about fox hunting.
- You obviously can’t afford any Christmas presents so prepare a long speech of how silly the whole exchanging gifts thing is and how you made the conscious decision not to participate in this consumation-obsessed capitalist practice by giving your relatives a true gift of love. Piles of sticks glued together.
- Yes you are unemployed and you sometimes eat the 79 cent pack of cookies as dinner to save money. But let's be honest, it could be worse. You could be a drug addict, a musical performer or someone who walks really slowly on small pavements.
- Since our social security’s fucked and the pension pond will be empty by the time our generation’s old, you’ve decided to go Benjamin Button and do your years of retirement before starting to go to work. Even your family has to admit that’s a sensible move. Now lit up a cigar and fill in some crossword puzzles.
- Lie. Just lie. You have a job, it’s fabulous. In fact, there are rumours going around in the coffee room you’re getting a promotion next year. Keep chugging that wine to distract your sense of guilt.
HOW TO COME TO YOUR FAMILY TATTOOED
Long sleeves, baby.
And don’t make fun of your baby sister cause she’s going to use this information against you.
HOW TO COME HOME TO YOUR FAMILY AS A VEGETARIAN
Make a flashcard and write down “it’s not a phase” in big red marker. It’s going to be easier to hold this up than trying to explain every time the subject comes up.
And if your family make jokes about you being a vegetarian - and they will - hold the foie gras video's and death by bycatch-figures ready so you can disgust their guts out. When they get mad at you for ruining their dinner, make them a deal and say you'll stop giving them the facts when they stop the jokes. Also, you're trying to save the planet. They should be thanking you.
HOW TO COME TO YOUR FAMILY PIERCED
“At least I can take that out. She has three tattoos!”