When the Holidays Aren’t so Happy


While there’s so much to love about this time of year — peppermint mochas, ugly sweater parties, and holiday movies that never grow old — there’s one thing that has many of us feeling dread … uncomfortable questions. 

They may mean well, but when you’re making the rounds at a social gathering and a friend or family member springs a question on you that you’re not in the mood to deal with, it can easily make you want to run for the door and swear off future gatherings for good!

“Are you still dating so-and-so — will there be a wedding in the near future?”

“Are you going to have another baby? Oh you have to — and don’t wait too long!”

“Are you still doing that job? What is it you do? Is that even a real thing that makes money?” 

Maybe the question touches a sore subject, or it’s just plain awkward (“Really Aunt Edna? You’re going there?”). No matter the reason, questions like these can be a huge source of stress at events that should be all about joy and merriment. 

So, if you find yourself faced with a question this season that makes your stomach churn, instead of feeling resentful or throwing a snippity question right back, take a deep breath (or a really big sip of a holiday cocktail!) and remember you’re living your life for you — not anyone else. 

You don’t owe anyone any explanations so feel free to be as open and honest or as vague as you feel comfortable. 

Sometimes, the easiest thing to do is smile and simply say, “Thank you for asking. I’m taking everything one day at a time and feeling blessed for all I have right now. And how are you?”

Or, you can use one of these responses: 

If asked, “Are you dating anyone?” You can say, “Not right now — and life is good.” Or “Not right now — it’s not my focus for the time being.”

If asked, “Have you two talked about marriage?” You can say, “Right now we’re enjoying the day-to-day. We’ll see what happens in the future.”

If asked, “When are you guys planning on getting a bigger house/apartment?” You can say, “We’re really happy at our place; if that changes at some point, who knows.” Or simply, “I don’t know right now.” 

As uncomfortable as it can feel in the moment, keep in mind that more often than not the person asking isn’t trying to make you feel bad. (Although we all know the ones who do!) Most are simply making small talk, so try not to take the convo too personally. 

No matter who asks you what, when or where, always know that you’re living your life your way, going at your own speed and you’re exactly where you’re supposed to be. 

Wishing you nothing but happy holidays! 

Emily and the Savvy Team 


Quote du jour

“Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city.” — George Burns


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