Avoiding Holiday Awkwardness [Diary of the Undateable]
I was cornered between a rock, a country and a sea with no feasible way of getting out. My dad and I were on our last night of our backpack excursion in Spain. We spent the entire week in a different country tip-toeing around awkward, unchartered conversational land…including the status of my romantic life.
Daddy Undateable alluded to my boyfriend (or lack thereof) a few times during our trip, but he finally came out and asked me point blank: “Are you seeing anyone right now? Do you have a boyfriend?”
Instead of just saying “no” and rerouting our conversation to my résumé, I slipped and lost my cool. I let mi padre see me sweat. My mind went into overdrive thinking of decent answers and excuses to his one little question. But I know my dad. It’s never just one.
“Why not? What’s going on? Are you just not meeting anyone? Is everything okay?”
Since I’m slowly rolling into my twenties, my future is definitely the topic of every adult conversation that I’ve been having lately. If it’s not about my classes, then it’s about my career. If it’s not about my career, then it’s about my “love” life.
I can talk about my dating struggles to my friends, to my classmates and to you guys. But when my family asks me about them, it’s a whole ‘nother story. I don’t want to be the black sheep, the one that ends up being on receiving end of a blind date or constantly put on non-marital watch. It already began when I showed everyone my prom pics of me and my friends…and not me and a date. It continued when all of my close cousins started to bring their boos to meet everyone at church…and I came empty handed. Yeah, a boyfriend would be nice, especially around the holiday season. But I shouldn’t be the subject of verbal dissection because I don’t have one.
So how can I – and we, the undateable masses – avoid the unavoidable?
Be prepared with an answer.
I didn’t think I’d be grilled about my love life by my dad, so I didn’t have my game face on. Going forward, I will expect it. Of course there are reasons why I’m single – I just don’t know all of them. That won’t stop me from coming up with a coherent answer, though. Which leads me to the next step…
Think about the why.
When a new year approaches, it’s always a good time for self-reflection and necessary changes where need be (hello, resolutions!). Classes are over ‘til January. I have time to assess everything I’m doing right and wrong.
Steer the conversation from the beginning.
I plan on taking control of every conversation from now on, right after the kiss on the cheek and the “how have you been?” If I helm the topic of discussion, I can politely steer it away from me.
Just be honest.
At the end of the day, there’s really nothing wrong with being a solo act. I’m only 21. And sometimes I do get impatient, but I have the rest of my life to find love…or even like, for that matter. I don’t have to rush the process because of an uncomfortable conversation or intense questioning.
CollegeCandy, do you guys have any steps for avoiding or dealing with awkward relationship questions?
When she’s not watching for Blue Ivy sightings or doing some serious Facebook creeping, Khalea moonlights as a print journalism major at the REAL HU, Howard University. Follow her on Twitter at @letsbeKHAlear, or feel free to Twatch. Whatever works for you.
[Lead image via NAS CRETIVES/Shutterstock]