Your Thanksgiving Disaster Stories

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Happy holidays! I hope you’re spending them alone... Or with the people in your pod, or the people you live with, and that’s it, because that pesky global pandemic is only getting worse as time goes on.


Anyway, Thanksgiving was yesterday, and it was no doubt unusual. In a regular year, I’d ask Jezebel readers to share their holiday horror stories, and in an attempt to restore a sense of normalcy, I’m going to ask again anyway: What was your most disastrous Thanksgiving? Was it yesterday? What happened? Funny stories preferred, but I’ll take what I can get.

But before we get into all of that, let’s take a look at last week’s winners: these are the relatives you’re most excited to evade this year:

BabySquirrel, I’m glad you get to avoid them!

Let’s see, is it the step-uncle who sexually harassed me at Christmas a couple years back? Is it my beloved grandpa that was “just” a “normal” Republican before Trump but is now thanking Jesus during every dinner prayer for President Trump? Is it my step-aunt who thinks that getting fact-check clouds slapped on her every Facebook post is “how you know it’s true”? Is it my aunt who has to know why you arranged your food that way, why your socks look like that, why your sweater says that, why do you have that kind of keychain? Is it my cousin’s husband who called my sister a hooker once? Is it my uncle who called my husband “creepy” once?

I never travel to see them for TG anyway, but it feels...extra nice this year.

Cheers Pink Ears!, it is a great year to avoid him:

My mother-in-law’s husband. He’s a Trump supporter and also hard of hearing, which I normally wouldn’t hold against anyone, but, I don’t think his hearing aids work very well, he will defend how terrible the liberals are by just shouting about what “they” are doing to ruin the country louder, and louder, and louder. The person with the most volume wins the argument I guess.

At least he’s not a voter? When it comes to actually voting, then everybody is a crook.

BovineSpongiformEncephalopathy, enjoy your time without them:

Let’s see...

My racist aunt (by marriage) who loooooooooves Candace Owens?

My step-uncle who once stood up at a family gathering and went on a rant about how all liberals should be ELIMINATED while making a throat slashing motion?

My parents who are anti-masker, virus hoaxers and who make fun of me for trying to be healthy by eating well and exercising?

All of my insufferable Republican cousins on one side who were born halfway between third and home plate, yet think they hit a home run?

My other Jesus freak cousin who tries to lead prayer over every mundane thing?

My weirdo uncle who is obsessed with guns and is into militia shit and has never moved into his own place?

Oh oh oh and then there’s my racist aunt’s sister who once shot a dog on Thanksgiving.

Yeah, not missing any of them.

Locksmith-of-Love, this is nice and you’re out of the greys.:

well, my family is generally decent, though i like having my distance. but i have not had a thanksgiving at “home” in 20 years. 3 of those years were army, 2 were extended backpacking travel, 13 years of living in france, etc. i have barely seen any of my family in 15 years, since i have been in the US only three times in the duration.

i was hoping to do a thanksgiving this year with one of my neighbors and their family, but since we have a national lockdown, it looks like a no-go this time. since i am one of the few americans in the area, and i have met less than 5 americans in the time i have lived here, thanksgiving at my house is a special occasion. one that people talk about years after the fact. the last time was a few years ago with a muslim family, so i had to go to a halal butcher to find a turkey. since turkey is the traditional christmas dinner in france, getting it a month early was a bit touch and go in my mind. but when i talked to the butcher he said he knew all about thanksgiving because his sister loves it and has one every year! :D

and please can i get out of the greys? :)

Drop those horror stories in the comments below.

URL: Senior Writer, Jezebel. IRL: Author of the very good book 'LARGER THAN LIFE: A History of Boy Bands from NKOTB to BTS,' out now.


The year my father was dying. He was in the hospital over Thanksgiving. When they brought his dinner, there was a paper turkey placemat on the tray. For some reason that just broke my heart. Trying to make a “festive” Thanksgiving, which was his last, by putting it on a turkey placement. There was something just so sad about it. The things that stick with you though....I cried for years just thinking about that damn placement. Fuck it, I’m crying now.