Despite Survey Results, Families Still Gather During the Holidays

Ritual Zero Proof recently sponsored a survey of 2,000 Americans over the age of 21 regarding family gatherings during the holidays. The results are “sobering”:

  • 60 percent dread going to such gatherings.
  • 63 percent agree that there’s always one family member who takes things too far when it comes to “indulging” during the holidays.
  • 58 percent agree that their entire family drinks too much at holiday gatherings.
  • 33 percent agree that it is their uncle who is likely to overindulge and do something shocking.
  • 47 percent say politics is their least favorite dinner table discussion topic, with family gossip (42%) and personal drama (41%) following closely behind.
  • Respondents said that mom (31%) and dad (30%) lead the charge in bringing up uncomfortable subjects.
  • 43 percent of people surveyed said that leaving early is one of the most common party faux pas at family parties (they must not know about the Irish goodbye), followed by yelling (39%) and drinking too much (38%).
  • 48 percent admit to drinking more at family holiday gatherings — more so than any other social event during the year.

When asked about the most embarrassing thing someone has done at a family holiday get-together, one respondent took the term “lit” a bit too literally and “fell in a fire pit.” Another popular, embarrassing behavior was vomiting, whether it be “on another person,” “on the table,” or even “on the host.”

But it’s not just family gatherings where there are such problems.

  • 66 percent of respondents agree that there’s always one coworker who takes it too far at holiday office parties.
  • 62 percent also confess that they’ll drink more than usual if there’s an open bar at the office party — specifically because it’s free.
  • 69 percent believe that too much booze is available at parties in general.
  • 75 percent feel the holiday party is where they truly find out what their coworkers are like. This also proved to be one of the top reasons people attend office parties, with 46 percent seeking to discover the hidden sides of their colleagues.
  • 62 percent of respondents say they’ve dreaded going to work the day after an office party due to embarrassment.
  • 64 percent admit that they couldn’t look at some of their coworkers the same way once the celebration ended.
  • 56 percent worry that they themselves might get fired after office holiday party events
  • 47 percent have a desire to reduce their alcohol consumption.

According to one respondent, “[A] coworker got drunk and fell into the Christmas tree and knocked it over, then threw up in the boss’s driveway.”

The results may make you wonder why families and businesses still have such gatherings.

You may have also picked up a theme here – alcohol is at the heart of many of these problems.

And so it may not surprise you, and those with a sharp eye may have caught this right at the start of this post, that the survey was sponsored by a company that makes non-alcoholic liquor.

Ritual Zero Proof bills itself as the true liquor replacement. They sell alcohol-free rum, tequila, whiskey, and gin. The beverage comes in the same type of bottle that regular alcohol comes in.

So perhaps if you are hosting this year’s holiday family gathering, you can secretly replace the alcohol with Ritual Zero Proof.

My guess, though, is that the uncle will still make a fool of himself.

I speak from first-hand experience as an uncle…

*image from  Movie TV Tech Geeks

65 thoughts on “Despite Survey Results, Families Still Gather During the Holidays

  1. I’ve rarely attended a private gathering where booze was provided! Generally, we BYOB which I find helps somewhat bc you’re not consuming like you’re at a buffet! But yes, based on the respondents the parties would suck a lot not without the booze LOL… moderation moderation moderation! I’m sticking to that!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I think Phyliss Diller said that the thing she hated most about office parties was looking for a new job the next day. But I wonder, if people think they’re getting booze, when it’s really non-alcoholic, would they behave like they’re drunk anyway? Maybe the booze is just an excuse to act like a fool.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. wow – I have not heard that name in along time. Phyliss had some great lines.

      I wouldn’t be surprised if people started acting drunk because they thought they were drinking alcohol but they were not

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Too bad, so sad…Took me a minute to follow your reference to Trump but then again, based on the title, I thought this post would be about a survey related to the ongoing pandemic. Silly me?


  3. Hi Jim, I am the one who always leaves early. I leave when I’ve had enough and when asked I will say that. My family know this about me. After all, we don’t chose our families do we, we get to love and endure them [grin].

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Not too many big drinkers on my side of the family, but my wife’s side usually has a bit of drama. It’s a bit ironic since she isn’t that way at all. I used to cut out pretty early out of work parties. A large percentage of the time, somebody would overindulge and make a fool of themself.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lol.. ah those were the days both at home and at the office and to be honest so much truth despite the great marketing ploy by the company..The trouble can start in my experience before the family sit down for dinner when there is a policy of one glass of sherry in the trifle and two in the cook….great post Jim thank you..xx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh dear.. All of that is a distant memory.. But what fun they were… I’m abstaining this year apart from the xmas pud I am as of 2 days ago joining in solidarity with my girls while they are having chemo xx

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I think these things are all common in any social get together where people are comfortable enough with each other to feel uncomfortable with each other. with strangers, I’m guessing it doesn’t happen as much. as you know, I am a huge proponent of the Irish goodbye and am pretty good at it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. that’s a good point. I think ti does require a bit of feeling just comfortable enough at such gatherings, and then going beyond your limits.

      and yes, I remember mentioning the Irish goodbye as well. it is such a useful tool…

      Liked by 1 person

  8. If someone threw up on me, it would start a chain reaction of vomiting. Talk about a way to end a party. Holidays are tough enough without making things worse.

    I agree that the boozeless booze experiment would be interesting, though. If anyone tries it, I’d love to hear the results.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The trouble is, if you’re used to holding back because you’re driving, the joy of not being the driver (eg. staying over, or travelling with a teatotal driver) you forget the other reason why you don’t want to drink too much – the morning after.
    And of course the OTHER other reason – making a pratt of yourself. But with luck, the rest of the party will have drunk too much to recall your faux-pas.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Isn’t it “normal” for people to drink more than “normal” when they have parties and family gettogethers? Anyone who drinks as much at home as they do at a party may have a problem. The people at RitualZero are a bunch of partypoopers and their bias is obvious. I love (not dread) going to family gatherings during the holidays. Its about the only time I see many friends and family.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I enjoy family gatherings as well, and will typically have one or two beers at such events. It’s always enjoyable to see each other, but I am also happy when it is time to leave…


  11. These scenes don’t happen at our family gatherings. Not saying that drama doesn’t happen at times, but its not due to the alcohol, for there is none. Can’t use that as an excuse! LOL!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I haven’t been to a work party with booze since the early 90s… too much liability for the company!!

    I haven’t spent a holiday with family/relatives in over 25yrs… one of the best decisions I ever made!!

    I used to frequent a nightclub that peaked on Thu nights. Thanksgiving had the longest lines ever… friends escaping family to be together. Always a fun time!!

    Liked by 1 person

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