A lot of people I know will be going home for Christmas or Kwanza or New Years alone this year.
And that's o.k.
Don't force a relationship just because you want to show people you're not alone, in fact, that could be the worst decision of the whole year, because after the holidays, you're going to get questions from Aunt Sue, or Uncle Tim, and Cousin Kelly until the next time you bring another date to a family gathering. Or until you break down and cry because everyone else in the room is married or engaged and you recognize your future fate as the family spinster or ornery perpetual bachelor.
So here's a few ways to accept your singleness and fend off the questions, you and I know will be asked of you at the family table.
1. Bring a best friend. Best friends are few and far between, and more often than not, they don't disappear due to a break up, unless they mistakenly send you a text calling you a bitch behind your back. Best friends are also usually already acquainted with your mother and father, so it will make the whole affair less awkward, because they'll only be meeting family they haven't met before. They're also less likely to be attacked of question of your looming engagement or babies.
2. Master the, "take a drink and cough" routine. They ask a question you're uncomfortable with or not eager to answer, such as, "so are you one of those gays?" or "do you just have a low libido?" You smile and take a drink (KEY: HAVE DRINK IN HAND, THIS DOESNT WORK WITH AN IMAGINARY DRINK). Pull drink away from your mouth, and then start coughing, as if choking, get up and walk to the bathroom to take care of yourself, when the fit is over. Also works with eating a snack, like pretzels or chips. They become so concerned for your well being, the question gets dropped.
3. Avoid people, hang out solely with your brother/sister/cat.
(However this just perpetuates your image as the perpetual bachelor/spinster/crazy relative).
5. Create an imaginary significant other. (This is harder in the age of facebook especially if you're friends with your family members).
6. Say you're trying to find yourself, before you drag an unsuspecting victim into the reaches of your crazy ass family.
7. You could also be between boyfriends/girlfriends.
8. Say you've met someone, but it's just not serious. Another form of the I'm dating lots of people, just no one serious.
9. If you're baking savy, stay in the kitchen and bake for the evening. Bake, NOT cook, because baking requires precise measurements, which requires your utmost attention, which means you can't answer Great Aunt Maud's questions about why you haven't had a boyfriend for the last five years or why your last girlfriend disappeared. Even if they haven't finished the 10 cakes you bake, at least you don't have to answer their questions, and you can send everyone home with a cake for a present.
And my personal favorite, JOKE.
10. Bring up their failed romances. It's known as the dodge and jab approach. They ask, "so are you still seeing that cute construction worker?" and you respond, "no, i really found him rather boring, but what ever happened to your first husband? He was so sweet."
If the last method is employed, be ready to jump and run, because depending on how hard you jab, they might actually slap you.
So while you'll be going home for the holidays, alone, you wont be without an arsenal of tactics to defend yourself against nosy relatives and curious family friends.
A SIDE NOTE: BE WARY OF YOUNGER COUSINS/ FAMILY FRIENDS WITH FIANCES OR SERIOUS SIGNIFICANT OTHERS.
Their questions will be more piercing and more mocking than your older relatives/friends, because they're attempting to one up you. Responses to them should usually include an embarrassing story in order to make them realize you wont play nice if they wont. If you can't get in your response immediately, bring it up later in front of their significant other. Otherwise, they'll think they can walk all over you.