5 Tips for Dealing with Rude Relatives at the Holidays

Welcome to the holidays, y’all, where rude relatives at the dinner table can’t be avoided. So Miss Lora, the Trailer Trash Miz Manners and author of the comedy advice book, “Y’all Are Rude!: Clean Up Your Act With Miss Lora & Baking Soda” has 5 tips on dealing with rude relatives either at their house or at yours – other than tossing them out on their ears. Really.

Hide the liquor – Hon, holiday meals can be volatile and locking the liquor cabinet is one guaranteed way to avoid those fist fights at the table that invariably end up on top of the turkey. At least, that’s what I finally figured out after some disastrous dinners at my house. TrustNow you may feel like you’re rude if you don’t offer scotch on the rocks or rum in the eggnog. But it’s perfectly polite to just have a bottle or two of a light wine where everyone gets a few sips for a lovely toast and then moves on to chowing down on your wonderful meal. Besides, once the whole stressful holiday experience is over and they’ve finally left, you’re going to need every drop for yourself to recover. Really.

Don’t bring up controversial personal topics at the table – At one dinner, Miss Lora realized that quite a few of the people at her table had just come out of rehab, rehab, jail and prison. She did not ask them how their time was. You don’t want to go there either. Trust me. Because ain’t nothin’ good can come of that and of course, it’s rude. Actually, there are a number of topics you should avoid like: “When are you having kids?” “When are you getting married?” and the ever popular “So you haven’t lost that weight yet, huh?” Definitely steer away from asking or letting anyone talk about their latest seeping health condition and be careful about discussions of favorite sports teams. Instead, Miss Lora recommends you stick to safer topics, ones like politics or religion. Really.

Don’t take anyone’s dish (including your own) personally – So you’ve just spent the last 48 hours sweating over a hot stove and oven for this year’s holiday dinner. Now one of your relatives wants to put her nasty dish of jello with fruit cocktail or worse, carrot shreds, right next to your fabulous candied yams with multicolored mini marshmallows. No one’s blaming you for wanting to toss it back at her head. But you can’t, because that would be rude. Instead, realize that everyone thinks their dish is special and they can’t help that they have no taste or clearly, taste buds. Just thank them for their contribution to the table and when no one eats it, you can just give it back to them with their leftovers. Really. Now if you’re the one who brought your favorite dish to someone else’s holiday dinner and they just left it in the kitchen, don’t take it personally. They clearly don’t know what they’re missing out on and you’ll have a perfect excuse to take it back home and have it all to yourself. Yummy.

You don’t owe anybody an explanation about anything – Now if you’re the one who’s being grilled on incredibly personal and invasive areas of your life right in the middle of your mashed potatoes and gravy, you just need to remember one thing. You don’t need to answer anybody’s questions, even your Momma’s, bless her heart. Your best policy is to smile pretty and then keep on eating. In case you really need to change the subject, keep some safer topics up your sleeve like Jesus or the President. That’ll distract them from your pathetic love life. Really. But if all else fails and you can’t take it anymore, Miss Lora recommends you excuse yourself and go sit at the kiddies table. Even if the rug rats bite, they still may be safer than some of your relatives. Trust me.

When it comes to somebody else’s liquor, behave yourself! – Holiday dinners with the relatives are supposed to be about love and joy and celebration but don’t confuse it with a party. Just because they have an open bar doesn’t mean you should indulge. These are folks who can push your buttons like no one else can so it’s best to treat the whole situation like a ticking time bomb – with a fight just waiting to happen. You know I’m right! So Miss Lora’s rule of thumb for liquor at the holiday meals is – more than one and you’re no fun! Trust me. Just keep it together until it’s over and then you can head home and have as much as you want to erase the stain. The truth is that holiday dinners are a lot like the labor in birthing a baby. You’ll always remember the pain and yet somehow still, a year later, eventually want to do it all over again. Really.

c) Miss Lora – available for interviews! Miss Lora, “The Trailer Trash Miss Manners”, has over 1,000,000+ hits on her Youtube web series’ “Y’all Are Rude!” and “The Southern Guide to Internet Dating” at www.MissLora.com. She is a Southern Communication Expert, Dating and Life Coach, stand up comedian and air personality who’s been on national TV and radio and is the co author of “Power Lines: What to Say in Problem Situations” (Harper Collins).

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