With the holiday season upon us, gatherings with family and friends often come with well-intentioned yet sometimes uncomfortable questions. To help navigate these moments, myself and Martha McKittrick, my favorite PCOS Nutritionist, have teamed up to share invaluable insights on handling those unwanted comments and inquiries during Thanksgiving and beyond.

Tips To Handle Unwanted Comments At Thanksgiving

Comments About Your Weight

Possible comments:

  • Looks like someone has been eating well
  • You’ve put on some weight from last year
  • Maybe you should skip the dessert table

Possible Responses

  • Talking about weight while eating ruins the meal. Let’s focus on this delicious meal
  • “I’m not sure what you mean by that, but I’m not talking about weight today.”
  • “Let’s not talk about weight today. So boring. Let’s talk about X”

Comments About What You Are Eating

Possible questions/comments:

  • Do you really think you should be eating all that stuffing?
  • Why aren’t you eating dessert? Are you on a diet?
  • I thought you weren’t supposed to eat carbs?

Possible responses:

  • “Yes, stuffing is my favorite part of the meal, and I deserve to eat great food.”
  • “I’m satisfied with what I already ate, and don’t want dessert right now.”
  • “I believe in eating what feels good in my body, especially on a holiday”
  • “Carbs are actually part of a healthy lifestyle, so I choose to eat them.”
  • “It would be great if you focused on what’s on your plate, not what’s on mine.”

Comments About Your Appearance

Possible questions/comments:

  • Looks you lost some hair. Are you stressed out?
  • Looks like someone is pregnant (while looking at your stomach)
  • I see your skin is breaking out. Maybe you should try XYZ

Possible responses:

  • “I’m not into talking about people’s bodies or appearances”
  • Ignore the question and talk about something else
  • “That sounds like you’re criticizing my appearance, and I’d rather not here negativity like that.”
  • “Pregnancy is a private topic; you’ll have to keep wondering, because I’m not responding to that.”

Comments About Having Children

Possible questions/comments:

  • It’s about time you two started having children!”
  • You’ve been married for 8 years. When are we going to see the little ones?”
  • You’re not drinking wine. Does this mean you’re pregnant?”

Possible responses:

  • “Please don’t comment about our reproductive life; it’s no one else’s business.”
  • Ignore the comment altogether.
  • “I’m not able to tell you whether or not there will ever be little ones.”
  • “People choose not to drink for all sorts of reasons.”
  • “That’s not up for discussion.”
  • “That’s a painful topic, and we will not be discussing it with you today.”
  • “You’ll have to keep wondering, because I’m not responding to that.”

Our Favorite General Response To Any Question

Our favorite response to any question that you feel is  inappropriate or intrusive  is …

Ask them in a curious, genuine way “why did you ask me that?”

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family! I hope you have a wonderful holiday season.

If you want to learn more about Martha McKittrick, here is where you can find her: