Carly Sletten
January 27, 2016 10:38 am

Do you’ve been seeing someone on the regular and slowly but surely the relationship has developed and it’s now time to meet their family. This can be simultaneously exciting and terrifying, especially if your SO’s family structure is a totally different from your own.

I come from a pretty small family. Growing up, holidays were usually spent with my parents, my brother, and sometimes my grandparents. Family gatherings were also small, usually consisting of us and maybe an aunt and uncle or a few cousins thrown in from time to time, but to be sure, we were not a big, boisterous family who gathered in large groups. We spent time with our extended family in small, intimate gatherings with just a few members of the family at a time. That’s what I was used to and that’s what I thought I preferred. 

The first holiday I spent with my boyfriend’s family was a culture shock to say the least. For his family, the bigger the better! Every family gathering we went to I swear there were at least twenty people there. At least. It’s safe to say that I was definitely NOT used to that type of family time. It’s also safe to say that I fell in love with all of it. It’s actually pretty awesome when you get to experience both sides of the coin when it comes to family size. Here are four perks you get when your in-laws are many:

Everyone has a different culinary specialty

 It’s a no-brainer that you have to cook a lot of food to feed that many people. This means that you can seriously indulge in some pretty awesome cooking. We’re talking seconds, thirds, and dessert! Big families do a lot of meals buffet style, which is a nice departure from the sit-down dinners I was used to. Grab a plate and dig in, because that food goes fast!

Lots of cute kids running around

 There’s nothing I love more than a cute baby to cuddle the heck out of. Thankfully my man’s family has enough babies to go around so I can get my baby fix in. Take one baby, pass it around. Seriously, the cuteness guys. I just can’t.

It’s never, ever boring

With big families, there really isn’t time to be bored. How could you with so much going on at any given time? Finished one conversation? Hop right into another! Family gatherings for large families usually can’t be contained to just one room, which means you’ve got a houseful of fun literally around every corner.

You learn all the family stories

 The more people you have in a room, the greater the chances are that someone knows a dang good story, and with big families, EVERYONE has a story to share. Those stories are most often hilarious, and typically embarrassing as all get out for the persons involved. However, it’s par for the course and no one has hard feelings. How could you when before the dust settles on one story, another gut-buster is already in progress?

I’m lucky I think, because I get to have the best of both worlds when it comes to families. Interestingly enough, my boyfriend loves spending time with my calm and quiet family for the same reasons I love spending time with his, which is a win-win for the both of us. I’ll always love my cozy little family, but I love my big in-law family, too, and thankfully I get both!

(Image via NBC)

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