1. Many families have that one toxic member (or maybe there are a few of them) who can turn a seemingly fine conversation into a family feud – especially during the holiday season. There is no shame in removing yourself from the situation—leave the room or step outside until cooler heads prevail.

    If your dread is more centered around being grilled by friends and family about things like your relationship status, body changes, or a tough life event you’ve faced recently, you have a few options:

    1️⃣ Rehearse any replies to anticipated questions in advance of gatherings, so you don’t find yourself struggling to figure out what to say.
    2️⃣ Change the subject of the conversation if you don’t feel like having a particular discussion, but try not to do so in a provocative or defensive way. For example, don’t respond to, “How are you doing since the breakup?” with “How are you doing since you got passed over for that promotion at work?”
    3️⃣ Inform someone that the topic they are bringing up is a sensitive one that you would rather not discuss.