Ways Of Spending Time With Family You Don’t Like On Holidays

Ways Of Spending Time With Family You Don’t Like On Holidays December 24, 2023


Ways Of Spending Time With Family You Don’t Like On Holidays

Ways of spending time with family you don’t like on holidays. We all have them, that one relative that we’d prefer to avoid during the holidays or any time for that matter. Maybe it’s an uncle who always shows up drunk or a cranky aunt who doesn’t let up on you about something she doesn’t like.

How do we avoid them? Is there a secret? Here are a few strategies to help you get through the holidays with relatives or family friends you don’t particularly like.

You’re Not Alone

It’s important to know that you’re not alone. It’s quite likely that there are other members of your family who don’t like this particular family member. Find a way to focus on some positive aspects of your day. You may consider hanging out with a different family member to avoid the annoying person.

Maybe you will get to see your great-grandmother or someone you truly enjoy. If this is the case, make an effort to spend some extra time with this person. If you’re feeling trapped, make your polite excuse and say you really need to talk to someone before you forget or get sidetracked.


Set your boundaries. It’s fine to say “NO” to someone. Be firm but polite. You don’t have to participate in anything that makes you feel uncomfortable. Simply say you’ll chat with them later and visit with someone else.

You can tell people that you’re not ready to talk about a specific topic, or you can simply avoid the subject entirely if you wish. Avoid sensitive topics. Maybe have a short list of funny incidents or topics that you can bring to conversations.


Take a short break. Play with the kids or step outside with another family member that you trust. Family dynamics are always unique. Have another trusted family member help keep you from having to be alone with the person you don’t feel comfortable around if you need help. Enlist them to run interference, call you away, or ask for your assistance.

Kids are great diversions, and you can always come up with a reason to chat with one of the kids or help one of them with something.

Stay Positive

Stay positive. Smile and look busy if you need to avoid someone. You can be busy helping someone prepare the meal, set the table, etc. If you see them headed your way, you can get up and head elsewhere or start talking to someone else.


Arrive before or after the person that bothers you. This trick works well as you can either be busy or, because you’re late, you can focus on helping in another aspect and avoid them.

Spend less time with your family if that member is around. You’re sorry you can’t stay, but you really must keep your children on a schedule or some other polite reason.

Keep in mind that you can only control your actions and reactions. You have no control over someone else’s actions and reactions. It’s also important to keep in mind that it’s only for a few short hours and only one day out of the year.

One day, that person will be gone from your life forever because they have passed on. Will you miss them when they’re gone? Will you have any regrets that you avoided them during the holidays?

About Elle Clark
Elle is a Pastor’s Daughter and has been writing for over three decades. She writes about youth mentoring, addiction recovery, parenting, senior advocacy, gardening and sustainability, and an eclectic mix of other topics. She resides in Northeastern Washington with her husband and children. You can read more about the author here. You can read more about the author here.

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