The holiday season is now over, which means most of us can take a sigh of relief having survived the hostile crowds at the mall, the steep plunging in our bank accounts, and the mass amount of carb intake from holiday foods. For some of us, this holiday season involved a monumental time in a girl’s life, when a relationship is taken to the next level; it’s the introduction of the boyfriend to the family.
When we reach that point in our relationship where the “just dating” title is gone and we reach that “comfortable” stage in the relationship, we know it’s time to take things to the further to see if there really is a future with this guy we have invested so much time in. After having spent countless times talking about our boyfriend to our family, now we want to show him off and gain their approval. To many girls, this can be the make or break moment to a relationship lasting, but what happens if the family and the boyfriend don’t get along and we don’t want to write him off? Well don’t fret just yet; here is a guide to how to get the guy that people you love to get along.
- Don’t Pick Sides:
I know your family may be pulling you one way and your boyfriend the other, but keep in mind as soon as you pick a side then there’s no hope for the other. Siding with your family is disrespectful to your boyfriend. You’ll make him feel like he is not worthy of you and that you are not willing to try and see how he feels. If you side with your man, then your family is going to say that all you care about is your boyfriend—and no time for them. Either way, you are going to lose. Best thing to do would be to hear both sides of the argument and play Switzerland; and STAY NEUTRAL.
- Make Your Stance Known on Both Sides:
It is extremely important that you let both your family and your boyfriend know your opinion on the matter. You have to make your boyfriend understand that your family is important to you and that it means a lot for both of them to get along. You also need to acknowledge why he feels uncomfortable with them or why they make him upset. Make sure you take notes; this information he gives you can help when you talk to your family. Also don’t forget to make it clear that they are your family, you love them, and they will always be in your life; and if he wants a future with you then he needs to make an effort. (Warning: be careful how you word this because he will be defensive and may take it the wrong way). When talking to your family you have to be firm and secure when talking about your boyfriend. Ask them what they feel is the problem, listen to what they have to say, and then express to them what he feels. Here comes the most important part—let them know that he is the man you love and he will be in your life as long as you want him to be, and they need to respect that. Your family tends to be protective and wants you to be happy, so let them know that he makes you happy and that you want him to be accepted by your family. This shows that both your family and your boyfriend need to make an effort to be nice to each other and get to know one another.
- Determine if the Problem is Your Family or Your Boyfriend
After making your point known to your boyfriend and your family, things could still be a little rocky. If there is a lot of awkward silence or tension between both sides then you need to make sure that you observe what the problem is. Is your boyfriend being too defensive? Is he not making conversation? Is your family too aggressive or do they act like he is simply painted in the background? It is important to see what the source of the problem is so that you can try and fix it, but most importantly DON’T GIVE UP. I know this may seem exhausting and sometimes hopeless, but if you keep making your boyfriend and your family get together than eventually they will get along because they have to. They both love you so they both will have to accept each other because it is what makes you happy.
- If Things Work Out:
Great! You finally figured out how to solve the puzzle! It was a long journey but now your family asks if he will come over and your boyfriend now feels like he can conquer any family event and have fun with you. Relationships always have their ups and downs. However, now that your family accepts your boyfriend, you need to make sure you keep that separate from your relationship. This all means that if you are having a fight with your significant other don’t go crying to your entire family with all of your complaints about him as this could be lethal to the relationship you just had them finally build. We all fight with our boyfriends, make up the day after, and let things go. This doesn’t mean your family will let it go that easily, it can cloud their judgment of him because they see it as him hurting you. Keep all your bad boyfriend rants to one specific person you trust or your girlfriends; that way, if you make it out of the fight or any rocky patch you can still bring him to family events.
- If Things Don’t Work Out:
After many attempts to make the family accept your boyfriend and there is still no improvement, then you have to consider whether or not this is a sign it might not work in the long run. Your family has always been there for you, through thick and thin, but can’t seem to support who you love. There must be a reason for this; either he is not right for you, or your family just thinks no one will ever be good enough for you. But there is no future if your family and your boyfriend can’t get along. If your relationship is ever going to grow into a marriage or a family of your own, you’re going to need your family’s support, so make a decision. Is he worth fighting for? Or is he never going to accept that your family will always be in your life?