If there’s one thing Latinos know how to do, it’s eat with family. It may sound like a breeze, but surviving a Latino family dinner is totally a rite of passage and something we’re groomed for from the time we emerge from the womb.
Here are 15 GIFs that totally capture a Latino family dinner.
1. You open the door and about a thousand of your cousins greet you.
Even though your face hurts from smiling and kissing all of them, you try to remain upbeat because you are hungry. The faster you get through this, the better.
2. Of course, everyone insists on calling you by your childhood nickname…
Credit: Comedy Central
It doesn’t matter what you look like now, you’ll be Gordo / Flaca / Yoyi / Cabezón de Melón for the rest of your life.
3. Your abuelo insists you sit down next to him and watch “Primer Impacto,” even though dinner was supposed to start 20 minutes ago.
And of course he insists on talking throughout the entire show.
4. Your tía chismosa comments that you’re looking out of shape, and your entire family chimes in with their thoughts about it.
You summon strength you didn’t even know you had to calm yourself and not freak out.
5. By now you’re starving, but the chisme is flowing and no one in sight seems worried about when dinner is going to start.
At this point, you’d even eat your Tía Tati’s cooking — the same tía who’s managed to burn water.
6. Then the dreaded “mija/o, puedes ayudarme?” comes from the kitchen.
Despite your brain screaming, “NO!!” you say, “Sure, abuela!” Because while it all seems harmless enough at first…
7. …You then proceed to be scolded about how you don’t know how to properly boil a pastele.
OKAY, IN YOUR DEFENSE, MAKING PASTELES IS REALLY, REALLY HARD.
8. FINALLY! It’s time to eat! You feel like this:
You’re truly so happy you could cry.
9. Oh right, except it takes about 20 minutes for everyone to stop fighting about where they want to sit at the table.
You deserve a damn gold medal for not losing your sh*t on every family member right now. (And for avoiding sitting next to that one gassy uncle.)
10. You then have to wait until all the older people are served, while fielding questions about when you’re going to graduate/get promoted/get married/have 2.5 kids.
Weren’t family dinners supposed to be, you know, enjoyable? No?
11. Every five minutes, your mami, tías and abuela ask you if you’re enjoying the food they “slaved over.”
You calmly tell them it’s very delicious, all the while trying not to blow up.
12. You get scolded at least five times for using ketchup on your pastele. “You’re too Americanized!” they shout at you.
Credit: Disney Channel
You insist you didn’t mean to offend them, but by now it’s too far gone. Everyone’s offended and fighting.
13. You make it through dinner (finally), when your abuela says it’s time for dessert.
Hell. Yeah. There’s no way you can offend your family when eating flan!
14. This then leads to approximately 18 hours of “sobre mesa,” mostly spent talking about people you’ve never heard of.
Who is Cousin Osvaldo, and why have we spent hours talking about his goiter?!
15. Of course, it then takes another hour-to-five months to say goodbye to everyone.
Credit: IFC Films
Do I even really know all of you???
16. …And as you leave, your abuela asks you when the last time you went to church was.
Credit: Disney Channel
Wouldn’t be a Latino family dinner if your status with God wasn’t brought up at the last second! Ay dios mio.
Can you relate? What happens when your family gets together for a big meal? And can we come?