It happens year after year – your parents always want to spend the holidays with you. And no matter the excuses you make up about how busy your life is, they just won’t stop badgering you about how you should be with people who love you this time of year. Here are some ways to convince them you aren’t ditching dinner at Aunt Greta’s to sit at home to binge on Netflix and Chinese food:
Photoshop stock images of yourself surrounded by friends.
Photoshop might cost $192, but it’s worth every penny to not be with your nagging mother this Thanksgiving. Just Google, “thanksgiving table young happy” and you’re bound to find thousands of images of joyous people enjoying themselves around a table. Put yourself at the head of the table so your parents know that you’re the “alpha bitch” of your imaginary friend group. For extra points, include images of a random celebrity that your parents would never recognize by name, but will look familiar enough to them that they’ll think it’s a friend of yours they’ve met before. This will make them feel more involved in your life than you’d ever let them be.
Send your parents a bouquet of flowers signed “Your daughter & her cool roommate Kim.”
If you keep sending your parents gifts in the mail, they’ll convince themselves and the rest of the family that you really do desperately want to be there but you can’t and this is a thing a lot of people your age do, including your hip and likable roommate, Kim. You and Kim always have so much fun together. You also share the same handwriting – weird!
Blast a podcast when you make your annual phone call home.
Your parents will expect you to call during the holidays. When you call your parents, be sure to turn on your favorite podcast so it sounds like the room you’re in is at least populated by three people. Use NPR if you want your parents to think you’re an intellectual that discusses ISIS over a glass of fine wine. Otherwise, just find a comedy podcast and make sure to raise the volume every time the hosts laugh. To make it really convincing, layer it with holiday music. Then, you can just go back to listening to the podcast.
Letting your family know you’re okay from 1,000 miles away at all times isn’t easy, but just focus on what the holidays are all about: sending empty symbols of love and affection until people stop asking questions about you. Happy holidays!