20th Century Fox
Michele Bird
December 22, 2016 4:06 pm

The holiday season is notoriously well known for being the moment when you meet your significant other’s family for the first time. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been dating for a few weeks or months, meeting the folks is always an important step in every growing relationship.

For anyone who has encountered this situation before, it’s easy to assume that making a good impression is key. But make the wrong move, and a first time meeting could easily turn into a disaster. And no one wants that — especially in a budding relationship.

With many many of us traveling home with their SO’s this holiday season, there are various do’s and don’ts that can help make meeting the parents nothing but smooth sailing.

Plus, avoiding any awkward moments much like those we’ve seen in movies such as Meet The Parents and Wedding Crashers is likely a top priority. So, if you’re having a few nervous butterflies, I’ve come up with a guide you’ll want to keep on hand as you prepare to meet the folks because ‘tis the season.

Don’t be shy.

No one likes an awkward silence, and it can only be that much worse when you’re meeting someone for the first time. When I initially meet somebody, I always try to find a common interest to spark conversation. Whether it’s about hobbies, places traveled, or a loved sports team, there are literally thousands of topics you could discuss. The tough part is choosing one — but after that, it’s just a simple conversation.

Avoid sensitive topics.

There are always a few things best avoided when talking with someone you don’t know well — or at all. Whether it’s analyzing politics or saying something foul, some things are just better left unsaid — especially if you want to dodge the chances of having an uncomfortable chat. While there’s nothing wrong with a healthy debate, throwing down the gauntlet during a holiday feast isn’t exactly the spot you’d want as a battleground arena.

Try not to get too tipsy.

While drinks are usually flowing during most holiday gatherings, it’s good to play it safe and be mindful of how much you’re actually consuming. You don’t want to end up turning your SO’s family home into the scene of a raging party. There’s a time and place for getting tipsy, and your first meeting with the folks probably shouldn’t be your go-to spot.

Bring a small gift.

Bringing a small token is a great way to show your appreciation for being welcomed into your SO’s family home. Some gift ideas for your partner’s parents could be a bottle of wine, a box of chocolates, or even a floral arrangement. Not only does this gesture show that you are thankful for their hospitality, but by going that extra mile, you’ve shown that you put in some thought and care from your end.

Have fun.

At the end of the day, meeting the parents isn’t really as stressful as it may initially seem. Treat your SO’s folks the way that you’d want your parents to be treated when someone meets them for the first time. These people are likely to be in your life as your relationship with your SO progresses and flourishes, so it’s good to establish a solid framework with the pair.

So take part in the new holiday traditions, enjoy the company — and most of all — have fun with the whole thing. After all, it’s the most wonderful time of the year, right?

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