From nosey aunts to the cousin in the corner, these 7 relatives keep family time interesting

Julie Sisler

In case you missed the memo, it’s the holiday season! Hooray! For most, that means finding your way back home to the dinners, game nights and other mostly awkward rituals that come with the season. 

While this means spending time with your family, which is undoubtedly unique and completely different from other families, it might also mean getting cozy with the family of a friend or significant other. In these cases, you may find yourself uncomfortably comfortable with the way the family interacts. 

Who would’ve thought your boyfriend has the exact same set of creepy uncles you do? Or that your best friend also has an aunt who tells about all of her past relationships before anyone’s even filled their plate? 

As you settle into your seat at the next holiday family gathering, take a look around, and you just might spot the stereotypes within your own family.

  1. The sports guy

Above all, he makes sure EVERYONE knows he’s a sports guy. This guy, who may be an uncle, cousin or brother to you, is both the best and the worst type of family member. Though he’s easy to please (just turn on whatever sporting event is on (or if you’re real smart, whatever you’ve got recorded)), he’s also a nightmare to speak with. If the conversation strays even the slightest bit from sports, he gets a little twitchy until he can bring up the fact that he has SEASON TICKETS to the Predators, even though he can’t afford to pitch in for grandma and grandpa’s anniversary gift.

  1. The nosey aunt(s)

You know exactly whom this is. You’ve avoided her all year, hoping to save your last shreds of dignity, as you’re completely aware she’ll destroy them if she gets ahold of any of your personal information. Yet somehow, she already knows your GPA, bank account balance and what you texted your ex the last time you were drunk. Guess you’d better change your phone lock code again! 

  1. The crazy little cousins

You know those little kids in movies always running away from parents in grocery stores? You know, the ones that have to wear those backpacks with leashes attached? Yeah, those are these cousins. You may not know much about disciplining children, but thanks to these kiddos, you know you need to do a better job than their parents.

  1. The cousin in the corner

You’ve heard of the elf on a shelf, but we’re all much more familiar with the cousin in the corner. This cousin is the one whose eye color you may not even know, because you’ve never actually made eye contact with them. They stay tucked away in the corner, face hidden by a book, phone or tablet. All information you know about them comes not from the cousin themselves but from their mother, who is constantly doting on them for what she insists is being a misunderstood genius. You, however, aren’t convinced a genius would be on the same level of Candy Crush halfway through dinner. 

  1. The political opponent

You may not even be following the upcoming presidential election that closely, but even if you are, this relative will make you feel stupid for even trying. Regardless of what your stance is on any given political issue, they are always ready to open one of the 26 tabs they have on their phone with statistics to back their point. You didn’t know the type of stuffing Aunt Deb used this year was a political issue, but apparently she’s single handedly opposing small businesses and creating an even more divisive wage gap. This is the relative who makes you shrink in your chair, hoping they don’t know you didn’t wake up in time to vote before class in the last state election. 

  1. The ‘questionable’ uncle

We all know about the “questionable” uncle — the one that flirts with the line just as much as he flirts with your cousin’s new girlfriend? This is the uncle that leaves you wondering after every conversation if he meant to call you fat or if he genuinely thinks flowy clothes are more your style. He seems to mean well, but after two glasses of wine, you just can’t tell. 

  1. The youngest cousin that doesn’t want to act their age

Nobody wants to be the odd one out, but few are as good at showing this as the youngest cousins. The youngsters demonstrate their need to fit in in one of two ways: They either try to age up or age down. They may latch onto the next oldest cousin, even if that’s you at the youthful age of 21, and will want to do everything you do. They’ll insist they can handle learning to drive and that they know just as many curse words as you do. The other type of youngest cousin will believe they’ve found the fountain of youth, acting like a toddler for as long as the doting aunts will let them. They’ll keep up the baby talk well into elementary school, maybe even crying until you heave them onto your shoulders for a piggy back ride, though this was far easier when they weren’t half your size. 

Features reporter Julie Sisler can be reached at [email protected] Follow Julie on social media at @julie_sisler.