Thanksgiving is upon us. For many people this means great food, great company, and quality family time is in store. Unfortunately for other folks this means high stress, uncomfortable conversations, and eruptive behavior.

I have been scrolling through my usual social media news feeds and I am not seeing very many 'happy' Thanksgiving posts. Many posts and 'quips' I have seen seem to be filled with dread. Thanksgiving can't be that bad, can it?

Thanksgiving is a time for family and friends to come together to give thanks for the great things in their life. Although for some, Thanksgiving is a time to put feelings and emotions that have been bottled up all year on the table right next to the turkey and mashed potatoes. If you are dreading Thanksgiving this year, here are a few tips to help you survive.

  • 1

    Don't Talk Politics

    In the wake of the recent election, I'm sure this is going to be a tough one for many families. It is no secret that many people here in Wyoming do not see eye to eye on the issues and the results of this month's election. There is a good chance that this topic could result in a fight. Don't spend your quality family time arguing and bickering about this. You will have plenty of opportunities to do that moving forward. Focus on the positives in your families' life. Thanksgiving is a time to come together, not a time to divide ourselves.

  • 2

    Don't Drink Too Much

    Thanksgiving can be a stressful time for some people. Some choose to "overcome" this stress by drinking large amounts of alcohol. This is not doing you any good. The majority of domestic disturbance/violence occurrences on Thanksgiving are alcohol related. Once intoxicated, those feelings you have been burying deep inside all year are likely to surface and possibly erupt. Moral of the story: If you have pent up emotions, don't try to drink them away. It won't work. Plus you don't want to be that guy with the lampshade on your head.

    Also don't drink and drive. That is just irresponsible and dangerous. The Wyoming Highway Patrol and local law enforcement will be out missing their holiday to make sure yours and everyone else's is safe. So don't be a jerk and make sure you and the whole family make it home safely.

    *Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor or psychiatrist. Advice is given as suggestion.* 

  • 3

    Avoid Awkward Questions

    Someone will most likely ask you awkward questions you don't want to answer at the dinner table.

    • "When are you getting married?"
    • "When are you going to give me grandchildren?"
    • "Why aren't you more like your brother/sister?"
    • "Why didn't you tell us you got a tattoo?"
    • "Etc... You get the idea."

    The key to avoiding having to answer these questions is to KEEP EATING. Be strategic about your bites. Always have a mouthful of food when these questions come about. After all, it is super rude to speak with your mouth full. If that doesn't work, excuse yourself to the bathroom and just hangout there until the conversation moves on.

    Or when all else fails, just RUN!

    Scott Griessel, Thinkstock
  • 4


    I can't stress this one enough. (See what I did there)

    It is important to give a little time to yourself, even if just for a few minutes. You may be cooking for 20 people, you may be cooking for 5 people, and/or you may be surrounded by 15+ family members all day. What ever the case may be, make sure to take a breather and relax.

    Find a quiet room to relax in for a few minutes. Take a short walk. Get on your mobile device and read a few fun articles. Click here for some good ones.

    Thanksgiving is all about family, but don't forget about yourself.

    Wavebreakmedia Ltd
  • 5

    Check The Weather Often

    There is currently no snow in the forecast for Thanksgiving weekend in Wyoming, but that could all change in a heartbeat.

    The Wyoming weather has a mind of its own, so try to keep up with its moods and decisions. Extra caution is advised for those traveling for the holiday weekend. Check the forecast often and plan accordingly. You would hate to be stuck in your car for Thanksgiving.

    Irina Igumnova