Disclaimer: I typically don’t do relationship posts here and I’m not sure of I will continue to do so. Nevertheless, had fun writing this piece and wanted to share! Hopefully this will keep some lad or lass out of the dog house this holiday season.
As we approach the holiday season, many new couples are going through one of the most stressful situations imaginable; meeting the family. Here are 5 easy tips on how to survive your SO’s family for the holidays
1. Ask for a brief family history (ask them to include pictures)
You don’t want to go in there completely cold. It’s good to get an idea of who you’re about to meet and possible quirks they may have. Every family is different, make sure you have an idea of the dynamics in your sig o’s family before you step in. If you come unprepared, you may be stepping into the lion’s den.
2. Dress to impress
Don’t even THINK of showing up in sweatpants to the first family affair. You’d think this was a no brainer but you’d be surprised. This doesn’t mean the fellas need to bring down their three piece suits and ladies need that cocktail dress…. Unless your sig o tells you it’s that kind of event. Be cute, comfortable and presentable. Also be camera ready just in case they ask you to be a part of the family photo (don’t be offended if they don’t ask you)
3. Shut up.
Really. Don’t ask if you’re the first significant other they’ve brought over. No one wants to hear your take on the string theory or why the Dallas Cowboys are the best team in the NFL. No one wants to hear about how crossfit changed your life or your burpee count for the day. Don’t brag. Don’t talk about yourself unless you’re asked (and if you’re asked you should have some sort of elevator pitch ready for such an occasion). For the first half hour or so just watch the dynamics of the family. Smile, and speak when spoken to. Get acclimated to the the environment and the people around you. They’ll be asking you questions soon enough.
4. Lend a hand (if you can)
Offer to set the table or carry stuff to/from the kitchen. Clear the table, offer to wash the dishes after dinner. Don’t get in the way, but don’t be a wallflower either. You know what you’re good at, if it’s with kids offer to round up the kids and play a game with them while the adults catch their breath or something. You’ll get huge brownie points for that. It’s important that you not push your way to help mic they say, no thanks, offer again in a couple of hours when the scenes changing ( from dinner to dessert or something).
5. Be honest and keep the “me” talk to a minimum
Your sig o likes you, that should be enough for their family. Don’t embellish on simple truths and don’t toot your own horn, that’s their job. Be humble and modest. Talk about what you do, but take less than 3 minutes unless you are asked to elaborate.
6. Step back
Don’t get into everything. Don’t gossip with the family. Don’t follow your boo around. They are seeing family they may not have seen in a while, let them reconnect. If they’re decent they’ll come find you or make sure they keep you near, but get ready to hang on your own as people sometimes forget their manners around family.
BONUS: Find out what topics are off limits
Maybe their family doesn’t know about that crazy weekend in Cancun because your sig o said they were bogged down with school work. Maybe they don’t know about that naughty tattoo on your sig o that you love. You don’t know what your sig o shares with your family, so ask if there’s anything you shouldn’t mention. Being at the root of a family fallout may be the worst thing ever.
Smiiiiiiiile at everyone!