11 Ways To Avoid Phone Conversations With Your Parents


My parents love me. They are instantly elated at the sound of my voice. They’ve even begun to look to me for advice. All of which is to say that avoiding their phone calls has become well nigh impossible. And, while I hate to publicly heap scorn upon them…well, this leads me to number one.

1. Write About Them

If you happen to write — professionally, on a blog, or even occasional tweets — don’t be shy. Invoke your parents! Take their antiquated advice and charming slip-ups and use them! Write about them! Expose them. That should make them think twice before calling you.

2. The Deadline

The mere word is forceful and implies professionalism. It is also one of the greatest conversation enders known to mankind, and a one-way ticket to parent-free days. And the best part is you can assign them to yourself at your own accord.

3. Leave Your Phone At A Friend’s House. (Or Just Lie That You Did.)

It was actually last week, after a deluge of phone calls from my parents, that I decided they were robbing me of my ability to live. I told them I left my phone at my boyfriend’s place. It was a spur-of-the-moment decision, and one I’ll never regret. Almost instantaneously, phone calls transitioned to emails, and I felt a weight lift off my shoulders.

4. Save It For Dinner

If you’re one of the lucky ones like me who live in the same city as your parents, then you’ll inevitably have a meal date with them on the horizon. Do what I do and, when they call, say, “I’m seeing you next week! Can’t we talk about it then?”

5. Utilize Service-Free Zones

Often times, I’ll call my parents while walking to the subway. What better way to hear your mom ask for the 700th time whether you made your dentist appointment, than while walking down the subway steps into the depths of no cell service?

6. Get Blackout

Try drinking an inordinate amount, and then confusing your dad’s number with a friend’s. Whatever the outcome, I can assure you it will be of the TMI-variety, propelling him to back off for at least 12 hours. On my 18th birthday, I blacked out. Dad called me. And though I missed the call, I apparently didn’t miss him, for I proceeded to text him, “Yo. At genesis, 88th and 2nd. Do it.” It’s unclear what happened thereafter, but what I do know is my father responded, “Have fun sweetie,” and didn’t call me again the rest of the night.

7. Get THEM Blackout.

Turn the tables on ’em; shake things up a bit. Though, of course, this requires you to be physically with them and is under the unlikely assumption that you can force your parents to guzzle Jägerbombs.

8. Fake Sick

Got the runs? Sore throat? How about a headache? The options are endless, especially the nonvisible ones. It’s the oldest trick in the book, but still manages to work every time.

9. Business Meeting

Ah, ye olde “Last-minute business meeting, can’t talk” text. The claim is simply incontestable. And if you’re unemployed, don’t fret. I used this gem religiously when my only job was a shop girl in retail.

10. Pretend They’ve Got The Wrong Number

Pick a day, any day, and every time a parent calls, answer with a heavy Mexican accent, “Hello, Papaya Dog here. How may I asseeees-ju?” I don’t care what they say. Keep at it. Eventually they’ll come to the conclusion that your cell phone number they’ve had stored in their phone for 14+ years is now, miraculously, the number to Papaya Dog.

11. Call Them At 5 Minute Intervals

Remember that time you tried calling your parents incessantly to give them a taste of their own medicine? Me neither. But it’s worth a shot. Best-case scenario, they find you insufferable and cease calls for a week. Worst case? They stay on the phone for an hour each time you call.

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image – Mo Riza