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Thanksgiving survival for singles

Jessica Downey

Coffee addict. The serial single girl. Jessica will give you the what’s what on single life and dating in Chicago.

Yes, I know it may seem a little typical of me to write anything about how to survive the Thanksgiving holiday when you are single. What is there to survive exactly? Survival, to me, is more something you do when you are stuck in some awful situation and want to get out alive. You know like if aliens are invading or a meteor is headed straight for Earth.


I am a woman who likes to be prepared which definitely can help to not make an awkward situation even worse. So, no, I am not giving you a guide on how to survive being single. Rather, here are a few tips to survive all those uncomfortable situations that you may find yourself in because you are single.


Scenario 1 You were supposed to bring the new flame but broke up just before.
Breaking up sucks enough on its own and if you have to rehash what happened over and over again, well, that pretty much screams miserable. Of course, the added bonus here is you have plenty of food and alcohol to drown your sorrows. The best advice here is to be brief. It doesn't matter if your boyfriend ended it in some really douche bag sort of way (or if he did something douche bag-like to make you end it). The important thing is that it's over. Simply say the relationship wasn't working and move on to a more positive subject.


Scenario 2 You just had two or three really great dates with a new guy but aren't sure if it's the best time to mention it to everyone.
Ah yes, definitely a tricky situation. You know you like this guy and feel like you maybe want to see what could develop but that doesn't mean you are prepared to tell everyone about it. We all have at least one person in our family who asks way too many questions. Clearly if you can't even answer the questions you have yourself, it's probably not a good idea to mention it. So play it safe and keep it simple. Just say you have been on a few dates with some pretty nice guys but it's too soon to tell.


Scenario 3 Grandma or Aunt Ethel still wants to know why they never see you with a boyfriend and why you aren't married and don't have kids like your sister or your cousin.
This one can be exceptionally hard. You definitely don't want to tell Granny about how you don't see the light of day with most of your dates. It's also not a good idea to launch into all your theories as to why your relationships fizzle out before the holiday season. Part of the problem here is that some people just can't seem to grasp the idea that single people can be happy. Just assure them that you feel your life is happy and fulfilled. Try talking about other things you are involved in, like volunteering, a new art class, etc. Gently remind them that it doesn't matter when anyone else married or had kids, it's not your time yet and eventually it will be. Just whatever you do, be sure not to make up a fake boyfriend that is just asking for trouble. And frankly it's a little tacky.


Scenario 4 Your ex (or a good guy friend) wants to use you as a girlfriend stand in to please his parents.
Obviously you have to use your best judgment here. Personally, I don't mind making an appearance at dinner as long as I can go as myself. I am not cool with lying to anyone's family about this sort of thing. If you can't be honest about something as little as being single then you have bigger problems then just being single, my friend.

Scenario 7 Your former flame (your ex-boyfriend or ex-booty call) has decided to contact you to see if you want to hook up while you are in town. (We aren't talking about just meeting for coffee here.)
Yes, it's the holiday season and sometimes people get a little desperate for some good old-fashioned lovin'. Here's the thing though. This screams desperation and frankly, it's a little weird to me. I can assure you that you are not the first person he has asked nor will you be the last. Does it really make you feel all that special that you were on a whole entire list of women he decided to dial? Probably not. Plus who really wants to hang out with someone obviously stuck in the past? This is another situation where you have to use your own judgment, but I think it's best to politely decline his offer.




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