Surviving the holiday season as a singleton

brigette jones at christmasI usually don’t get too down during the holidays because of my single status. One trip to the mall to see couples sniping at each other as they struggle through their monstrous to-do lists usually takes care of that. But I know some of you do get tired of all smarmy jewelry commercials (“He went to Jared!”), the ads for online dating services (“Meet your holiday match!”) and — most of all — the snoopy questions from friends and relatives as to why no one’s stuffing your Christmas stocking this year.

For those who’ve reached critical mass with pitying looks, prying questions, and raised eyebrows after showing up yet again without a plus one, here’s a Single Shot column from a few years ago about how to survive as a single amid a sleigh-ful of couples. Cheers and happy holidays, everybody!

The mistletoe, the music, the unrelenting questions about when you’re finally going to settle down like your sister Sue. Yes, it’s holiday time for singles. To help gird your lonely and/or lascivious loins (consult your family to find out where you stand), I’ve put together a few tips on how to get through this joyous season without cold-cocking someone you love.

When are you going to Merry Christmas?!

Although it has been said that nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition, you can pretty much count on the fact that your family will start the traditional yuletide interrogation the minute you walk in the door.

“Haaaaaaaaaappy holidating anyone yet?” your mother, your sister-in-law and/or your drunken Uncle Ned will ask before your coat’s even off. “It’s so nice to see you know you’re not getting any younger.”

Don’t let this throw you. (Also, don’t let yourself throw anything at them.) Try to be gracious, upbeat. Steer the conversation back to something more pleasant (and equally personal), like the nasty divorce Uncle Ned is going through — “I forget, is this the third or fourth?” — or your sister’s infertility issues.

Please pass the relationship

If you do bring a guest with you to a holiday function, keep in mind that everyone will assume you’re sleeping with him/her, whether it’s your best friend, an “orphaned” co-worker, an exchange student you just picked up at the airport or the Dickens Carolers.

“Sooooo,” your cousin Pam will ask, “how long have you two been together?”

“Well, let’s see,” you’ll say. “I guess it’s been about 28 minutes since AAA sent Gus here to replace my dead battery and Mom invited him in for pie.”

Click here to read the rest.

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1 Response to “Surviving the holiday season as a singleton”


  1. 1 Socialkenny December 26, 2012 at 11:26 am

    What I hate about this time of year (you’ve eluded to it) is the bombardment of jewelry commercials which put massive amounts of psychological pressure on men to spend spend spend.


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What’s the story?

Meet Diane Mapes, your friendly neighborhood freelance writer. My regular beats include health, lifestyle and singles issues, but I also love writing about history, natural history, pop culture and TV/film. On this site, you'll find links to my latest stories, media appearances, and, yes, a bit of social commentary on the single life. Also here, info on upcoming classes and events, a library of clips, and a few shameless plugs about my books (hint: see links below). Have fun, glad you're here and hope to hear from you soon.

Oh! And if you're looking for my breast cancer blog, go to Double_Whammied

Check out my books!

How to Date in a Post-Dating World A dating manual for the modern, mangled single.

Single State of the Union
Single women speak out on life, love and the pursuit of happiness.

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