How to avoid hot topics at family gatherings.

"Amy, could you speak to the issue of how to gracefully handle changing the subject when politics comes up over the the dinner table, for example?" *Editorial note: This blog was originally written regarding politics but applies to any

topic. Each family has their own "hot topics" and this serves as a guideline for respectfully quieting those issues. (12/18/17)

This question was raised in my FB group for parents and I was very happy to help Michael, and all of you, with this issue.

After a very contentious political season, I'm sure many of us would like to just relax and enjoy our family gatherings without someone stirring up trouble!

Be Proactive

I always recommend a proactive approach when you know a situation could get heated. Start off with addressing the issue with everyone well before the date of the dinner. You can say something like:

"I'm are so excited that we're all getting together for Thanksgiving dinner. It's been a stressful couple of weeks and this will be a great time for everyone to relax and unwind. Having said that, we are asking that everyone agrees to leave politics out of our family dinner...after all, I think we all need a break from that stress, right?"