Christmas is right around the corner and the holidays seem to bring more awkward conversations than presents these days. I mean, there’s the subject of your cousin’s questionable new boyfriend, the fact that your grandma shouldn’t be driving anymore but no one wants to break it to her, and of course, the persistent question of your singleness.
Listen. You have no obligation to respond to your mom’s passive aggressive comments about aging out of being able to enjoy her hypothetical grandchildren or meet the “nice church girl” the parish ladies want to set you up with for coffee.
But in case you need a few answers to “Why are you single?” this holiday season, here are a few ways you can respond:
Stuff your face with food and mumble incoherently.
Confusion is a great way to avoid answering questions about your romantic life. When your aunt and her friends come up to you after church with matchmaking hopes in their eyes, just make your way to the welcome table where the mini donuts live and stick as many of them in your mouth as possible. When she asks you what happened to the nice young man or woman you were dating last year, just mumble an apology about having to excuse yourself to the bathroom. If that’s not enough to get you out of the situation, pretend to start choking. They can’t expect you to respond if you’re choking on powdered sugar, right?
Insist on talking about the election instead.
What better way to distract from your non-existent dating life or dusty ovaries than bringing up Donald Trump? And how about all that fake news Uncle Bob posted this year, huh? You can even say something super wild like, “I wish Kanye would have run this year” or “If loving Bernie means I’m a socialist, then so be it” and just watch the eyebrows raise across the room. Listen, no one’s gonna care that you haven’t dated anyone appropriate in years when they’re judging your political beliefs. You might ruin Christmas with this method but at least your love life won’t be a matter of discussion and that’s what really matters.
Stare disapprovingly and don’t say anything at all.
This is like a really fun version of a staring contest except you’re the only one participating. I suggest going for a face like Oprah’s when she has questions. You really have to be invested in this option because you might have to endure a few minutes of awkward silence but I almost guarantee they’ll never ask again.
Bring up family drama.
Why do you have to feel all the shame about being single over the holidays? Maybe it’s time to make other people uncomfortable this season. The next time your grandma brings up that she had been married for 10 years at your age, tell her that Dr. Phil isn’t a real psychiatrist. It’s probably time she knew. If your uncle is asking about that ex he bonded with over football on Thanksgiving, bring up his financial troubles! (Just kidding, this a satire piece, people.)
Just don’t show up.
Another option is skipping Christmas altogether and going on a cruise by yourself instead. Hey, when your mom protests your plans, tell her you might just meet someone in Tahiti.