How to Address Your Breakup at Thanksgiving Dinner


By Katerina Torres

The only thing more dreadful than a holiday breakup is having to discuss the breakup over the holidays. Thanksgiving dinner is prime time for family members to pry about your relationship status. If you brought someone to Thanksgiving last year and you're alone at this year’s dinner, you’ll probably be getting questions about that too. So how exactly do you go about addressing your breakup at a dinner table full of extended family and friends?

Chances are you want to avoid getting into the details of it all. You might still be sensitive to the breakup and you’d rather enjoy dinner than lock yourself in a room crying because you just had to rehash it with everyone.

One option is to go the route of honesty. Explain that you’d rather not discuss your breakup at a time when you should all be expressing gratitude and positivity. Thank them for their concern and guide the focus of the conversation toward gratitude.

Another way to address the breakup is to shift the perspective of it. Instead of sharing all of the negative aspects of the relationship, why it didn’t work, or how upset you are about it, you can open up about all of the positives that came from the breakup. Maybe you’ve uncovered some new interests or taken on new hobbies, or maybe you booked a really adventurous vacation that’s coming up. Talk about the things you are grateful for after the breakup this way the conversation revolves around the good and not the bad. Plus, your family will most likely want all the juicy details about these new interests, hobbies, or vacations more than they’ll want to know what your ex is up to.

Go into it knowing you’re probably going to be asked a lot about your relationship—or lack thereof. If you’re prepared, you’ll have a game plan for how to address it. These are people that love you and care about you. Being honest with them and shifting the conversation won’t make them love you any less. Remind yourself that sometimes their nosiness doesn’t come from a place of judgment, but instead it might be rooted in care and concern.

Keep it real with your loved ones. Make the focus of the evening on finding gratitude and you will all have a Thanksgiving dinner worth remembering.

writer photo

Katerina Torres

Katerina is the Head of Content at Mend. When she’s not cooking up new vegan recipes, she’s binge-watching yet another TV show. Her goal is to be your daily dose of positivity, whether through her writing, videos, or social media posts. You can watch her share bite-sized wellness tips in her weekly video series, Tub Talks.

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