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Christmas is coming; the goose is getting fat; your aunt’s a damn homophobe, and that’s that. No, seriously though, we could all use few sanity tips to survive the holiday madness. Here are a few pearls of wisdom to help you pull through.

Only participate in the parts of the holidays that validate you. You may love going to see family, sharing food, and talking about the good times, but church or a certain family member’s house could be triggering. Feel free to take the parts of the holidays that make you happy but respectfully decline invitations to the things that trigger you. You don’t have to feel bad about saying no.

Chosen family is real family. You may not have a big, extended family to go home to, and that’s OK. You might have a new family here in Denver or wherever you’ve made  your home, and that’s great. You’re still home for the holidays, with your family, with your people. Don’t let anyone make you feel bad about that.

Focus on the good. There are a lot of shitty things about the holidays, including judgy relatives, over-consumption, poverty, and hypocrisy. If you choose to just focus on those things, the holidays will totally suck, so try and focus on the good. Give presents to those in your life whom you love, even if it’s just a homemade card or handwritten note. They’ll really appreciate it.

Make your own traditions. Your new traditions may combine your own meaning of the holidays with a partner’s, plus some new traditions. It doesn’t matter if you’re sitting home roasting a turkey and watching movies or out at the club roasting a drag performer; do you on Christmas and make your own traditions!

Leave if it gets too rough. Last and most importantly, if family time, or any time, gets too difficult, you don’t have to stick it out. It’s OK to leave and go take care of yourself. Make sure to prioritize your own feelings and how you’re holding up during the holidays.