12 awkward holiday situations to avoid

Adrianna Mejia
Awkward situations you can find yourself in this holiday season

MANILA, Philippines – There are situations that you have no control over. Maybe you’re the type of person who isn’t very lucky when it comes to embarrassing moments. Something’s always bound to go wrong. 

During the holidays, friends, family and co-workers come together for a night (or several nights) of eating, drinking, random conversations and meet-and-greets. It’s also a time when awkward moments are unavoidable.

So when these moments do happen, don’t worry. There are always ways to turn things around and make them into positive, memorable experiences. You’ll find yourself laughing them off in no time.

Here are some awkward situations you may find yourself in (again) this holiday season:

1. Food stuck in between your teeth

The food at parties are really hard to resist but make sure you don’t get them stuck in between your teeth. If it happens, laugh it off and excuse yourself. Maybe sneak into the bathroom and floss to get to those hard to reach areas. If you see someone with food in between their teeth, keep a straight face and tell them politely. You wouldn’t want to make a big deal out of it.

2. You receive a gift but have nothing to give in return

It becomes even more awkward if he or she expects something in return. It’s difficult to hide how unprepared you are in this scenario. Rule number 1: do not run away. It will just make it worse. Say that you have no gift to give in exchange but make the effort to send one the day or days after. 

3. Meeting a new friend but have nothing left to talk about

 After asking all the “basic questions,”,you eventually run out of things to say. Dead air is not a good sign. This may test how good you are at carrying a conversation. Try to keep the ball rolling by grabbing a friend who can definitely spice things up or bring him or her to your friends. Introduce them and someone may just take over.  

4. You or your date had a bit too much to drink at your company Christmas party

 Alcohol makes you do crazy things, yes? It’s time to let loose but don’t overdo it. You still have to act like a responsible adult. Or at least try. Learn to say no when you already feel like your world is spinning, and don’t be shy to tell someone you trust that you’re borderline tipsy. If your date had a bit too much to drink, just make sure it doesn’t get too rowdy. But don’t spoil the fun either. If all else fails, just enjoy even if you’ll regret it the next day.

5. Odd gifts

We all get excited when we open Christmas gifts, but you can’t help but give an honest reaction when the gift you receive isn’t appropriate or doesn’t suit your taste. Some of us even end up faking an over-reaction to express how much we love it. Let’s say you receive a toothbrush as a gift. Unlikely but it happens. Look at the bright side— if it’s a brush with quality features, then why not replace your current one? Don’t let it show in your face or in the tone of your voice. Say thank you and a maybe a hug will make it all better.

6. Fake it till you make it

The food is the most exciting part when you attend a party. If it doesn’t reach your expectations then that’s where the problem comes in. This one is pretty tricky. You wouldn’t want to offend anyone but you also have to think about your stomach. Try getting small portions first to taste test. If you’re being watched like a hawk, the next best thing is to just finish what’s on your plate, smile, and say you’re already full after that delicious meal. You’re not required to have seconds, right?

7. You receive a recycled gift… and you know it!

And who gave it to you may also feel how awkward the situation can get. This is something most of us are guilty of. If you have no use of a gift you received the year before then you give it away the next year. Just try not to take it personally. After all, it’s the thought that counts.

8. See someone wearing the same outfit as you in the same party

You spend hours to find and fit the perfect outfit to impress your friends, but you end up wearing the same dress or top as someone else. You may think, “I shouldn’t have worn this” or “I should’ve gone with the other dress instead.” But turn it around. Laugh about it and pay the other person a compliment for “having good taste.” Take a picture together to remember the moment!


9. Unflattering candid photos

Maybe you have something in between your teeth, you haven’t mastered the “wacky pose” or you just weren’t ready while the photo was taken. There are many reasons why you didn’t look as fabulous in the photo as you did in person. Don’t fret! Photos can be retaken and this time you can be more prepared. Check yourself, your outfit, project confidence and flash your biggest smile.

10. Bad breath while having a conversation with an acquaintance

One of the worst things you can be known for is bad breath. Always have a mint ready in your pocket or purse for a quick fix. Even better is to brush your teeth before heading to the party so that when you arrive, you’re ready to talk to other people right away. Do it once and do it right with the proper brush, floss and mouthwash. It may be a life saver when you meet someone you want to have a long conversation with during the night.

11. Conversations on the dinner table

You may be asked what your opinion is on topics like politics and religion. Does this get you uncomfortable? Stay calm. Do voice out your opinion and keep an open mind when listening to others. It’s the holidays! No need to get into heated debates and arguments. If it gets too intense, time to move to another table or join other guests on the side.


12. Getting asked questions you don’t want to answer

“So, what do you do for a living?”

“I’ve been unemployed for the past few months and I don’t really do much now.”

“Are you dating anyone?”

“I’ve been single since birth or I just broke up with him/her.”

“What do you think about the … ? I’m sorry, the what?”

We tend to be asked these questions during the holidays. So try to be as creative as you can. There’s always a way to make a joke out of it. If you feel a bit uneasy answering, don’t let it show. Just act as normal as possible.

So remember, you’re making new memories this coming holidays and though you can find yourself in sticky situations, it can all be worth it. You’ll be able to move on and laugh about it next year.

What are your awkward holiday situations? Share it with us! –Rappler.com



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