What Can You Do When You’re The Target Of Nosy Relatives?

It’s the holiday season, your family is all excited have a few days off of work, to chill out and enjoy the good food that awaits. But there’s this one tiny thing that you really dread — nosy relatives! Ugh. You know what I mean.

We all have this one aunt or uncle that always asks uncomfortable questions and passes judgement. Sometimes some family members even compare you to someone else in the family. The worst is of course that one person that is only interested in gossiping and talking about everyone else in the family when all we want to do is just relax. But NO. You’ll somehow be interrupted with questions about your dating or work life.

Then, there are cases where you find yourself stuck in the conversation where someone in the family tries to set you up with their neighbour’s friend’s son. Although you’d very much like to avoid all the drama that comes with the holidays, but sadly, skipping the gathering isn’t an option. So here are a few ways you can deal with them:

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1. Come Prepared

Have a pre-rehearsed line or two in your head that you’re confident saying if you ever feel boundaries are getting crossed. One way to dodge an uncomfortable conversation is to be bold and say, “This is something I would prefer not to discuss right now, it’s too subjective and we should be enjoying the party!” or, “I totally understand you feel that way; I just have a different opinion on it and that it’s totally okay”.

Hopefully that busybody person will get the hint!

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2. You Take The Focus Off You

Instead, ask about how they’re doing. You give them a chance to talk about themselves, which they’ll probably love. Plus, you just created the opportunity to connect with them and hear a good story. Maybe you’ll even learn something in the meantime. Give them the benefit of the doubt that they probably aren’t the most skilled conversationalists and next time, they might not be as confident to pick up this topic with you again. Two birds, one stone.

3. Get Busy With A Trusted Accomplice 

If you’re busy running around, chances are no one will interrupt you. This is why it’s good to have a partner at the gathering who will team up with you to both run errands like last picking up stuff from the supermarket last minute, collecting a cake from the bakery or picking up flowers from the florist. The less time spent at the reunion, the less the annoying questions you get. However, if you don’t have a partner, you can always run these errands alone.

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4. Master the No Answer Trick

If you really can’t avoid their uncomfortable questions, start by telling them you value their concern. Try this, “You’re so kind to be interested in my well-being!” Trust me, there’s not much room for a comeback there.

5. Get It Over Quick

Keep in mind that a lot of those loving relatives are almost as excited as you are about your relationships and career. Plus, how long can a conversation last? As long as you make it. They ask, you answer, and the discussion is done (until the next time). Once you’ve gotten the questions out of the way, you can get on with the real task at hand — which is to enjoy the gathering. So just keep all your questions short and sweet and get it over as quickly as possible.