Teacher Recommends Talking To Adult Family Members 'Like Kindergarteners' To Avoid Thanksgiving Arguments

A kindergarten teacher jokingly demonstrated how to use kid-speak on your belligerent relatives, but she just might be onto something.

Woman eating thanksgiving day dinner, imagining it’s her kindergarteners AleksandarNakic, Robert Kneschke | Canva 

Thanksgiving and the holiday season are upon us, and you know what that means: lots and lots of time with extended family. Like, lots. Too much, in fact, for many of us!

If you're cringing just thinking about it, you're not alone. But one teacher on TikTok has a solution that just might save you, or at least allow you to laugh the rage away. 

The teacher demonstrated how to avoid Thanksgiving arguments by talking to your family like they're kindergarteners.

Especially in our fraught times, screaming matches at the dinner table have become as much a Thanksgiving tradition as turkey and pumpkin pie. It was even famously immortalized in an SNL sketch during the 2016 election, an era that somehow seems downright innocent compared to today's drama.


RELATED: Man Applauded For 'Blowing Up' On His Family For Criticizing His Girlfriend's Weight — 'This Man Is A Keeper'

But unlike in that sketch, this Thanksgiving we don't have a new Adele song to bridge the ideological gaps with our drunk uncle who watches nothing but Newsmax or our rabble-rousing cousin who insists on turning the turkey dinner into a lecture about seizing the means of production. 


So what to do? Well, TikToker @mrs.frazzled has—well, if not the solution, at least a solution. 

The teacher used her skills for simple communication with kids to demonstrate how to deflect our relatives' criticisms and political diatribes. 

Frazz, as she's casually known on the app, is a former elementary school teacher and podcaster who often creates content about education and politics, and among her most popular videos are ones where she uses the teacher-speak for kids to address big, grown-up issues.

In a recent video, she turned this skill onto the loudmouthed, belligerent "Uncle Jim" most of us have in our family, and dread seeing at Thanksgiving dinner. For her sketch, she used a scenario that will be instantly familiar to all too many people: a family member hurling politicized anti-LGBTQ propaganda at an LGBTQ family member at the table.



RELATED: Woman Asks If She's Wrong For Uninviting Pregnant Sister-In-Law From Thanksgiving Due To Her List Of 'Unreasonable' Demands


"Just like how some people have different favorite foods than you and different favorite colors than you," she told the fictional Uncle Jim in an upbeat, sing-songy voice, "some people love differently than you, and that is okay."

Frazz then turned it into a teaching moment as she would with a tyke. "No, take a look at their face, friend. You made them feel sad … Think quietly in your brain about a time when someone treated you disrespectfully or in a way that made you feel sad or left out."

And when Uncle Jim got upset, Frazz had the perfect solution. "Do you want to go take a minute in the calm down corner? I put pictures of boats in there!"

Frazz's video may be a joke, but experts say there's actually something to her method for how to avoid Thanksgiving arguments.

First things first: Do not talk to your Uncle Jim like a child unless you're spoiling for a fight! As satisfying as it may be, infantilizing your uncle is only going to make him madder. (But if you are spoiling for a fight, go ahead, because he probably deserves it!)


Silly as it may be, however, Frazz's video actually does have a few kernels of wisdom. For example, therapists suggest having prepared responses at the ready if you know your real-life Uncle Jim is apt to go sideways at dinner. This will help you avoid getting pulled into the drama and stay above the chaos that ensues. 



Therapist Susan Saint-Welch also told us in 2019 that it can be helpful to resolve beforehand that, much like Frazz did, you will refuse to stoop to the level of your family's negativity, including just not engaging at all with their arguments. And if that means simply getting through the gathering and leaving at your earliest opportunity, or even bailing early, then so be it.

But as someone who comes from a very … let's say "challenging" family, I am personally always an advocate for the most simple but often overlooked solution to avoid Thanksgiving arguments — not attending at all.




You don't owe it to anyone to attend family gatherings you know are going to be toxic. You're allowed to enjoy your holidays, too! Of course, then you'd miss out on the satisfaction of talking to your Uncle Jim like he's five. See, you just can't win this time of year, can you?

RELATED: Wife Issues PSA To Women Before The Holidays — 'Your In-Laws Are Not Your Family, You Don't Have To Do Any Of It'

John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice, and human interest topics.