Checklist for Meeting Your Significant Other's Parents for the First Time
After weeks (or months) of analyzing texts, and going the long way to class in hopes of running into them, you’ve finally gotten your crush to go out with you (yay!). Perhaps you’ve been on a few dates by now, and things are getting serious. Then they ask the dreaded question:
“Do you want to meet my parents?”
After a moment of terrified hesitation, you exclaim that of course you want to meet their parents. Then comes the panic. What will I wear? How should I act? What if they don’t like me? It’s normal to want to make a good first impression, so here are some ways to prepare to do just that:
Start familiarizing yourself with his/her family early. You can find them on social media, or even ask your S.O. about them. Learn about their heritage – it will determine the kind of food they are likely to serve, and what kind of values they have. It can also be beneficial to find out some of their interests. Maybe her dad is into the same basketball team as you, or maybe his mom follows your favorite TV show! These talking points will help you feel more prepared and comfortable in the new situation.
It can also help to prepare for the meeting like you would for an interview: consider some questions they may ask, and come up with some simple responses. For instance, their parents will probably ask you to tell them about yourself. You don’t need to explain your whole life story here, but it might be good to mention where you’re from, what your major is, and other things of that nature. To be especially careful, prepare for the hard questions, too. What happens when their parents ask where you two met, but you met at a bar or on Tinder? Talk to your guy/gal about this beforehand to match answers and avoid any awkward moments. (If you do end up in an awkward situation, try not to dwell on it too long. Change the subject and forget about it – don’t let it ruin your day!)
Decide what to wear beforehand, as well. The family heritage might make an impact on your outfit choice, and regardless, you want to put your best foot forward. You don’t necessarily need to dress like you would for an interview, but keep that old school dress code in mind. For guys, stay away from cut-up tops or bottoms, or anything with stains. For girls, try not to show too much skin the first time you meet the parents (future mother-in-laws can be a little judgmental at first). Most importantly, make sure you’re going to be comfortable, and that your outfit doesn’t require too much maintenance – you don’t want an extra thing to worry about that day. Ask your S.O. what to wear if you’re still unsure; they’ll know what their parents will expect.
Finally, when the day comes, just take a deep breath and be yourself. Your S.O.’s parents are probably just as nervous as you are to meet this new person in their child’s life. You all are on the same side: you want what’s best for your boy/girlfriend, and they want their son or daughter to be happy. The day will go smoothly if you keep that (and these tips) in mind!