BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — The holidays are a great time to get together with family, but there are both good and bad parts to these meetings. If you’ve sat down to a family dinner, you might be aware of the awkwardness and occasional tension at the table. We have good news and bad news about those difficult family moments. The bad news is that you still won’t be able to avoid them… but on the brighter side, a recent survey suggests that you’re definitely not alone in feeling uncomfortable at times.

A study conducted by KRC Research, EXTRA Gum, and Mars Candy surveyed 1,004 adults in the United States about the most uncomfortable family moments during holiday meetups. As part of EXTRA’s “Chew It Before You Do It” campaign, which focuses on relaxing using their product, the survey was designed to find common ground between most people around awkward holiday situations.

(link will be included to a weekend story here)

The surveyed consumers ranged in age from Gen Z to Baby Boomers, and it turns out that many of these groups have more family concerns in common than you may think. Here are a few of the survey’s main takeaways.

  • Nearly two thirds of surveyed adults in the United States have experienced uncomfortable moments during holiday social gatherings. One of the most common of these, experienced by 42% of those surveyed , was needing to force a smile after opening an undesired gift. This particular moment is one experienced by the younger generations in particular, with members of Gen Z and Millennials in particular (62% and 52%, respectively).
  • Almost every surveyed member of Gen Z expects to be asked about their future plans, career prospects, and relationships during the holiday season. This isn’t just a question for the youngest, though… half of all adults in the United States expect to be asked at least one difficult question about their personal lives over the holidays.
  • Roughly half of all US adults struggle to figure out what to talk about with their relatives over the holidays. Making conversation is particularly difficult for the younger generation, with 57% of Gen Z and 52% of Millennials reporting it as one of the most awkward moments over the holidays.
  • Forced smiles are also extremely common at dinner. One third of U.S. adults admit to pretending to enjoy a relative’s cooking. On the flip side, nearly a fourth of adults surveyed stated that they brought dishes to holiday gatherings that people did not eat or enjoy.

Do any of these sound familiar for you? Do you have your own awkward family experiences? Feel free to share them with us on our Facebook page.

The original survey results are available here.