Thanksgiving is approaching, and it is a time to unite and give thanks. It is also the time when family comes together to feast in harmony. Some people come far and wide in order to break bread with those they care deeply for in an act of gratitude. And if you are an adult, there may be an expectation to update the family on the latest and recent things going on in your life, and the subject of your relationship life is likely to come up.
For those who are married, you may feel pressured to decide which side of the family you will visit for the holiday, or even what members of the family you will invite if you are hosting. But if you are deciding on which family to visit, you are probably factoring in whether or not your significant other gets along with their in-laws (a.k.a. your family). It is a stereotype that people do not get along with their in-laws, but, for some, the stereotype can be true. So, if it is true, you may lean towards the other's family, or have your own Thanksgiving like some married couples eventually start to do. If there is ambivalence on who to visit or tension on who gets along, this may be the time for you and your significant other to start your own Thanksgiving tradition within the comfort of your own home.
For those who are seriously dating, you may feel that your family should meet your significant other so that you can get their verbal or nonverbal approval. Of course, some people do not care about this, but others do. Having your family support your relationship can lead to more comfort in your relationship. Your family may even financially support you a bit, if they are advocates of your relationship. At some point, you may hope to completely integrate your significant other with your family, so they can consider him or her as family too. Thanksgiving may be the first opportunity to achieve that.
For those who are causally dating, you may be wondering how you and your significant should spend Thanksgiving. It goes without saying that the two of you have your own families and your own events to attend, so some couples who are casually dating may set up a moment to spend time together privately, absent of family influence. This may be a reasonable path, especially for those who rather not explain their relationship to their family, or put pressure on their significant other to meet their family. And introducing family can turn this relationship from casual to serious, so it is important to know where you both stand on the matter.
For those who are single, you are probably preparing yourself for the tons of questions your family may ask you about your relationship status. They may tell you they know a woman you can meet, or remind you of the man you broke up with and suggest you get back together. Whatever the case may be, just remember they mean well, and remind yourself that your decisions are your decisions alone. No need to bring a pretend mate to Thanksgiving. Your life is your life.
So, feel free to take the advice heard from many single people on Thanksgiving: "Just eat."