7 Thanksgiving Ground Rules For The Dysfunctional Family.

All right y’all, it’s coming. The annual trip to Dysfunction Junction. Thanksgiving.

For some of us, it's the one day of the year when the entire family comes together, to remind each other why you only get together once a year. I like to call it the annual trip to Dysfunction Junction. (It's ok, my family agrees. They won't be mad I said that. Except, maybe my mom. Sorry mom.)

For some of you, I bet you can’t wait. Most likely, you have a happy little family. Everybody gets along. All smiles. You probably don’t even have to have liquor at your Thanksgiving to make it through. Good for you. All of you. This post is not for you.

For those of us with crazy-ass family members, here are a few ground rules you may want to send out before the hoedown. 

1. Don't make it about drama. Make it about the kids. First and foremost, this is about the children. This is the one day of the year they get to see their family, play with the cousins, have their cheeks squeezed by their aunts. 

2. No pre-drinking allowed. Everybody has to show up to this godforsaken event stone-cold sober. No Headstart allowed.

3. Don't be late. Your family has been starving all day, don't be the asshole who keeps them waiting to eat. (Matthew. I'm talking to YOU!)  If you are late, you are an asshole. And should have to wear an asshole hat the entire day. Including all photos. see below. Hint people who are still just bored flex and cannot be on time lied to them and tell them you’re eating an hour earlier than you really are.  

4. The cleaner, the better. Don't come over looking to make a mess. The happiest Thanksgiving‘s are the ones where you throw the shit away at the end, not spend hours cleaning and polishing china and silver. No one should have to go all out unless they want to. The hostess should be allowed to line everything in aluminum foil or parchment paper, and use plastic plates and flatware if they want. Leave your pretensions at the door.

5. Thanksgiving should not be stressful, for anyone. If cooking Thanksgiving dinner creates too much chaos, make everyone chip in and order a premade meal. Check your local grocery and see what they offer or google Premade Thanksgiving meals in your area.

6. All Are Welcome. Thanksgiving is the one day where color, religion and all other dividing bullshit should be set aside. This is the day we break bread together and be thankful for our blessings. Set aside your differences and get along with your brothers and sisters. All of them. Life is too short to keep shitting on each other. 

7. NO DRINKING AND DRIVING! Uber, Lyft, and yellow cab are happy to get you home. In the morning, you can have your car back.  

If all else fails, do what I do, grab a bottle of wine, and sit in the corner playing a game of Thanksgiving Bingo with yourself and the bottle of wine. 

April is an award-winning writer and blogger. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit AprilMcCormick.com