Another year, another awkward family holiday

By Tabitha Barr / Editor in Chief

With the holiday season arriving, students have been looking forward to heading home and seeing their family that they may have not seen in quite a while.

They get to go back, spend some nights in their old beds, spend time with family, friends, and just relax. With going back around the whole family, there are always questions to be answered that they’ve been dying to know.

How’s school going? Have you met any new friends? How’s college life? Are you enjoying your time up there?

But inevitably, they soon throw the one-two punch.

So do you have a significant other yet? … Do you agree with the President like I do? … You’ve definitely gained a lot, haven’t you?

Invasive question time begins before there’s even time for pie. College students are now seen as adults, but they haven’t been for very long. So when they’re asked their opinions over controversial topics, it can get intense. Sometimes, family members bring it up just to cause a conflict.

Even though people do what they can to avoid it, sometimes there is no stopping it from happening. Joe Morales, a student from Wichita, said his family is usually nice and rational when it comes to discussing politics. But there have been some comments about his personal life made by his family that are just completely unnecessary.

Gossip is fast and spreading, especially through the family tree. Morales had posted a joke on social media about “taking girlfriend applications.” His aunt saw that and took it seriously. She “spread the rumor to (his) grandma, who then proceeded to interrogate (him) about if I had a ‘woman yet’ or not.”

Morales was, to say the least, a bit upset.

“It was really awkward,” Morales said. It’s a reason that he doesn’t always look forward to family functions.

With holiday events, there’s always one thing that never gets forgotten: the food. Everyone is excited about the delicious plates and stuffing their faces. But with that comes the shame that people spread upon others in the family. It’s common for people to be fat-shamed at holidays.

College students have enough to worry about, let alone being told their own body isn’t in the shape someone else thinks it needs to be. Meghan Tonjes, an influencer that loves her body and goes by the adjective “fat,” wrote on Twitter:

She also gave her thoughts on homophobic family members. Going back home can be torture for those who are LGBTQ+ because sometimes their families are against them. She kept it simple and said, “I hope your homophobic parents choke on a stuffing.”

There are also family gatherings that are awkward, and uncalled-for-things can be said. Thomas Birdeno, HutchCC’s scriptwriting teacher, said four years ago during Christmas, his dad was introducing him to his new wife’s family. His dad was explaining how Birdeno had worked for a rabbi during his college years. His dad was happily telling the family how proud he is of his son. But afterward, his dad’s brother-in-law proceeded to make an anti-Semitic joke.

“It was cringe times 150,” Birdeno said. “I just wanted to disappear inside my clothes. I was offended, but I felt so sorry for (him) that that’s what (he) thought to bring up.”

Family gatherings for holidays have their positives, but they also have negatives that can affect those included. Religion and sexuality can be touchy subjects for families that are often unavoidable.

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