Dealing with Family Holiday Fights

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Exit Vernon

Verbal family altercations can make holidays difficult, so what can you do to escape the finger pointing?

Exit Vernon, Staff Writer

Marissa Daah (‘24) is on the fence about seeing her family for the holidays, “Sometimes I like seeing them, sometimes I don’t.”

Marissa describes herself as an introvert. For people like her, holiday family gatherings can be stressful.

The fighting doesn’t help.

Family fights happen for many reasons, but the way you choose to deal with your family rivalries may depend on what your family argues about.

Keep the Peace 

I’m excited to see them. They’re my family, man”

— Logan Neves (‘23)

One way to stop arguments is agreeing with everything. When it comes to your grandparent’s radical views, or your uncle’s terrible life advice, sometimes it’s not worth arguing over, so a simple nod and smile can prevent a brawl.

I just don’t want to be mean,” Dylan Hess (‘25) said.

According to The Family Dinner Project 40% of families eat dinner together on a regular basis. So family dinners can be awkward and heated. Obviously, political arguments are bound to happen. Most of the time the best thing you can do is keep peace with the family before things get too out of hand, but how?

At times, you might be the problem. Cooling yourself can help you handle all the questions about if you have a boyfriend, why your jeans are ripped, and why your grade is so low in history.

“If you feel like you’re gonna say something you’re gonna regret, just keep away from them for a bit,” Marissa Daah said.

Help Out

It’s easier to prevent fighting if your family is not already stressed, so by preventing the stress beforehand you potentially don’t have to deal with fighting at all. The Mayo Clinic expresses ways to ease stress during the holidays.One way to do this is to help your parents, especially if they are hosting.

Cleaning, cooking, and setting the table are all easy ways to help, and can make a big impact on the stress level in your house. A survey by Healthline showed 18% of people feel very stressed over the holidays. Helping your parents will relieve some of this stress and distract you from any fighting going on.

“The more help they can get, I feel, the better,” Ayden Mitchell (‘25) said.

Just Leave 

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Do you fight with your family over the holidays ?

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There’s no need to stop a fight with your family if you’re not even around them. One of the easiest approaches to dealing with family is completely removing yourself from the situation. Sometimes that means going for a walk when others become too much to handle, or slipping away to your room. This may make some guests a little irritated, but might be worth saving your sanity.

“Sometimes I’ll drive just to drive. That’s a way to separate yourself,” Roodyannh Labaze (‘23) said.

Enjoying Specific Company

Everyone has a family member they get along with a little better than everyone else and they might be the key to enjoying your holiday. Spending time with your cousins or siblings can help you forget any fighting everyone else is doing. But at the end of the day they’re your family and whether or not you have any strategies for dealing with them, you have to sometimes, so you might as well try to enjoy their company.

“We just hang out and play games. It’s a time where I can personally connect to them,” Celine “Cameron” Nguyen (‘25) said.