Bringing Your Partner Home: Thanksgiving Edition
The fall season in Richmond is pretty sweet. It’s comfortably cool, the Fan looks beautiful, and you can finally rock that awesome kitten sweater you bought back in July. It’s a season that certainly passes quickly, but it is punctuated with a dramatic conclusion.
As December looms with Christmas cheer, and the threat of shi**y weather, we say goodbye to fall with a calamity that brings our childhood traumas roaring back to life, and challenges our very sanity.
Thanksgiving has got to be the most awkward and disturbing holiday of the year. Valentine’s Day is perhaps a close second, followed certainly by Mother’s and Father’s Day, but Thanksgiving certainly takes the cake.
What makes this holiday such a nightmare, you ask?
Well, for those of you who truly love every minute spent with your family and enjoy the luxury of a Paula Deen grandmother, we are very happy for you. But, seriously, go f*ck yourself. For the rest of us the feeling’s a bit different.
For most Americans, Thanksgiving forces us back into the frustrating family roles we fled at eighteen. The never ending and passive aggressive arguments with our mothers, the infuriating political rantings of that one Uncle, the sibling rivalries, and to top it all off the feeling of being bloated drunk and tired.
Personally, I’d rather lay in bed, eat a pie by myself, and watch a parade. Solo pie bloated is good bloated.
The only thing that makes Thanksgiving that much worse is when you decide to bring your partner along for the ride.
The worries abound: Should I even open this can of worms? What if he thinks my family’s crazy? What if I finally break and just kill everyone?
We at Booty Jams are constantly fighting to eke out as much enjoyment from life as possible.
During Thanksgiving this fight is even more of a struggle than usual. Yet, we believe in the power of the human spirit to win the battle against the forces of familial frustrations, and break the chains of our destructive holiday habits!
We believe that we can even find some pleasure in inviting our partners home for Thanksgiving. It is a matter, however, of keeping a few key points in mind.
Firstly, let it be known that everyone’s family is some kind of crazy.
Secondly, alcohol on this blessed day can be both a blessing and a curse.
And lastly, we have to remember to laugh.
Going home is never easy, but inviting your partner into the mental asylum that is your childhood home is particularly stressful.
How do explain to your boyfriend of seven months your mother’s obsessive affinity for Precious Moments figurines or prepare him for the wildly “colorful” humor your dad thinks is so funny? It might be hard to believe, but it’s probably not as bad as you imagine.
As the guest, your partner is probably more concerned with coming off as funny and smart rather than noticing the Teletubbies shirt your thirty-four year old brother is wearing. While you’re quietly praying your aunt doesn’t get too drunk this year, your boy toy is having the time of his life listening to your mom’s breathless description of the dog show she recently attended.
Every family has its oddities and quirks, the quicker you embrace them the quicker your partner will feel comfortable and relaxed. Who cares if your sister always hums the Star Spangled Banner while she she’s chewing? She’s family!
The single most important aspect of Thanksgiving is, of course, the meal. Now, whether the family kitchen staff are award-winning chefs or hopeless failures, the one thing that makes it all go down easier is our old friend alcohol.
Whether it’s a hard apple cider that gets your goat or a pitcher of mulled wine that tickles your tender bits, throwing a few back eases the pain of the Thanksgiving stresses.
With your partner in tow you may feel more of a desire to take the first exit to inebriation, but cool your jets, there’s a few things to consider.
First of all, while you may think you’re the life of the family party after getting good and drunk, you, my friend, are probably very mistaken.
Maintaining a modicum of sobriety allows you to mitigate any inappropriate craziness that does happen to occur. Additionally, letting loose not only will loosen the tongue, but also those deep seated family emotions. Best not have that knock down, drag out bicker match with mom about the summer of seventh grade. Now is not the time.
Have a few to take the edge off, but keep a glass of water near by, you’ll be glad for it come Black Friday.
Finally, as much as you may disagree, there is the potential for fun at every get together with the clan. If we take ourselves or our families too seriously we’ll be worse for the wear, and we’ll probably wind up bumming out our significant other. Remember to laugh. Find the humor in your man’s discomfort. Conjure up those lame jokes you and your brother thought were so funny when you were ten. Relax. Enjoy the circus.
Though Thanksgiving can certainly conjure up all things awkward for you, your partner, and everyone involved, it’s also an opportunity to pull the curtain back on what made you, you. Take a step back for a minute, and remember there’s love in there somewhere. And that’s a good thing.
My sweetheart and I don’t pay much attention to roles in our marriage.February 15, 2016
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