Every holiday season, it’s expected that you’ll get together with family members whom you haven’t talked to for a year, and you’ll try to make conversation with them.
It’s strange, because some of these people you’ve known for your entire life, and yet you don’t know them on a deeper level. As such, you might end up asking an awkward or unwanted question like:
“So, are you dating anyone?”
“Have y’all talked about getting married?”
or, “When are you having planning to have kids?”
Fear not — this article will help you!
When you see your family members this holiday season, here are three better alternatives to asking the typical dating/marriage/kids questions:
If there are certain family members you want to socialize with, but they don’t have the best conversational skills, you can always prepare some things to talk about in your life, and then see where the conversation goes.
One time, I found myself asking the same cousin that dreaded question, “So, are you dating anyone?” I meant it in a nice way, of course. This cousin is a lovely guy, and I actually did know he was dating, but I wanted to open the conversation in case he wanted to talk about it. I realized after asking a couple of times that I was prying, and he was clearly avoiding the subject. So, instead, I started asking him about his friendships and how he’s getting along in the new city he moved to. I also remembered his Instagram which showed lots of food pics, so I asked about the restaurants he’s been to. He was excited to share that, and it lead to some good conversations in the next few get-togethers. I’ll call it a win!
The point is to prepare for conversations in your holiday family settings so you can grow your relationships with the people you love. Sometimes it’s not the easiest or the most natural, but preparation can help you to avoid the stonewall from questions they don’t want to answer. If your goal is to get closer to your family, then doing the mental homework beforehand usually proves to be fruitful. And if you’re really not sure what to say at the beginning of a conversation, just lean on the previous 3 go-to questions.
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