10 Types of Awkward Family Members & How To Deal with Them

December 21, 2011 10:40 am

Oh the joys of the holidays. Holiday music, delicious food and family time…lots of family time. Whether you have a family big enough to rival the Duggars or small enough that you consider your pets your children, the holidays require those awkward family parties and dinners. To make your small talk easier here are 10 types of crazy relatives and how you should deal with them.

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1.) The Dramatic Aunt
This is the aunt who knows so much gossip she makes Teresa Giudice look like a saint. She’s got all the details on her son’s girlfriend, knows your Facebook like it’s her diary and picks out her husband’s clothes for fear he doesn’t look as good as her. Don’t share any pressing details with this family member or you may have a Kardashian sized family throw down.

2.)  The Emo Cousin
Here’s the cousin you used to hold because they were so darn cute, and now they won’t get near you or anyone else unless forced. Their iPod is probably cranked up for half of the family gathering and your Dramatic Aunt can’t stop commenting on all those piercings. Kill this cousin with kindness. Even the emo want family love.

3.) The Odd Uncle
Okay Uncle Bob/Joe/Sam (insert generic three letter name here), your jokes used to be funny but noogies and rope burns are becoming less Comedy Central and more Disney Channel cheesy. This uncle means well but you may have to remind him you’re not 10 anymore. Divert him by offering to play a game or anything else that will keep him from embarrassing you.

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4.) The Gift-Challenged Grandma
Here’s the kind little old lady who spent all month knitting you a pink polka dot sweater with matching gloves. Appease her for a family photo and make sure the printed copy remains at Grandma’s house and Grandma’s house only. Think of how happy she’ll be!

5.) The New Baby
We love babies…just as long as we don’t have to change their diaper, deal with them waking us up in the middle of the night or get spit up on. We’re happy to gush over how cute his/her cheeks are and look at his/her itty bitty clothes though! Good relative points for telling the mom how much cuter her baby is than the Gerber baby.

6.) The Drunk Cousin
This cousin is usually a fraternity/sorority and keeps a flask full of rum in his/her pocket just in case the egg nog or apple cider needs a little kick. They’re entertaining to say the least and whenever you’re trapped in an awkward conversation it’s always good to pull him in to put the focus on someone else.

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7.) The Wise Grandpa
This Grandpa makes Dr. Drew look like an amateur. He’s full of wise tales and advice for the young. Instead of writing his words of wisdom off as boring, try asking him about his college years and see what your Grandpa was really like back in the day. He might have been just like The Drunk Cousin once, you never know!

8.) The Niece/Nephew Crew
Here are the cute kids who aren’t so cute once they open their mouths. You’re older so they automatically want to know: where you got your outfit, if you have a boyfriend, what driving is like and how your cell phone works. Appease them for a bit but direct them towards the Dramatic Aunt who will be happy to have someone to talk to.

9.) The Boyfriend/Girlfriend Who Isn’t Part Of The Family…Yet
This guy or girl will try so hard to say the right thing, wear the right thing and act the right way in every situation the night presents. Befriend him/her and you might actually end up having fun!

10.) The Problem Relative
This family member comes in many forms. Maybe your Aunt just got divorced. Maybe your cousin ran away with her motorcycle- riding boyfriend. Maybe Grandma is having a midlife crisis and is starting to resemble Heidi Montag. Whatever the case may be this person “isn’t doing so well.” As much as you may way to pry, don’t even go there. You’ll never hear the end of this person’s problems and might end up stealing some of that spiked cider from your Drunk Cousin to get through the rest of the evening.