How To Answer The Awkward Questions In Family Gatherings

There is nothing better than having family reunions on special occasions. We all love our families but sometimes we are hesitant about attending such gatherings because of the awkward questions that accompanied.

Nearly no one can escape from such embarrassing questions. When I was single, someone asked, ‘Why are you still single? Too choosy?’; when I now have a boyfriend, someone still ask, ‘When are you getting married?’. Year after year, these awkward questions probably would never disappear.

When Your Answer Can’t Save You From The Embarrassing Moment…

The worst case is when you refuse to answer their questions, they comment on your behavior or attitude. Saying that it is none of your business might be the simplest answer but they would think that you are impolite and not respectful. After all, there is nothing good about ruining your family relationships.

But giving a brief answer doesn’t always work. ‘I don’t have any plans on this’ is a rather delicate answer but not everyone understands you are actually saying ‘please don’t ask anymore for God’s sake’. Instead, they will keep asking more. You will soon realize how exhausting it is to answer all their endless questions.

You Can Gain The Upper Hand By Asking This Question!

The more effective way to deal with these questions is to first figure out their intentions. People never ask a question without any intentions. Asking about their intentions can reverse your position, from a passive role as you used to play to a rather active one. They are no longer in a dominant position leading the conversations but you will become the one who have more control.

Asking directly might be the best way to figure out their intentions without misunderstanding:

Why are you still single? Too choosy?
You: Are you worried that I might be lonely?
When are you getting married?
You: Are you concerned that I am waiting too long?

Those who ask with a kind intention would simply expressing their concerns. But if they are just being nosy or even intend to embarrass you, your question creates another awkwardness. This time, it is them who feel awkward because the conversation does not go smoothly in the way as it is expected. Then they would try to escape from it like everybody else.

But be aware of your tone and body language. Sometimes the awkward questions they ask might irritate you. But you need to take a deep breath and be calm when you respond so that you won’t sound unfriendly. Don’t make others feel like you are challenging them or giving them a hard time.

How To Give Further Response After You Know Their Intentions

Crack A Joke If They Are Nosy

Some people are just being nosy. They don’t care about you much actually so you can just simply crack a joke or say something irrelevant when they ask some questions that you’d rather not to answer. Most of them won’t keep asking when they can’t get what they look for. And discussing what interests you has been proven by researches as one of the best ways to escape from awkwardness.[1]

Take The Initiative To Share If They Try To Connect

Some ask questions out of kindness. There are some family members that you seldom see so sometimes they might want to break the ice with you by asking some questions. They might not know that these questions would embarrass you. If they genuinely try to be kind to you, you can take the initiative to share something about you before they accidentally ask you awkward questions.

Leave No Time To Those Who Intend To Irritate You

You might not want to admit but let’s face it: some members do intend to embarrass or irritate us. Don’t fantasize family because it is composed by different people as in society. No one have a choice for family members. But what you can do is to occupy your time with those close to you without leaving opportunities for anyone to pick on you.

You and I know that such awkward questions appear from time to time. It is very unlikely that they will be forever gone. We can’t control what others ask but instead of ruining relationships, we can give corresponding response to different intentions gracefully without putting anyone in an embarrassing situation.


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