Meet the Parents: Introducing Your BF to Your Family
Ahhhh… the holidays. It means time to relax, eat good food, spend time with our families, and to be nothing but inevitably, merry. Nothing could spoil these chances we have to kick back and relax, which always seems to come too few and far between. For you, however, the approaching holidays also means introducing your new boyfriend to your family, and that can put a wrench in the relaxation, but don’t let it! HerCampus has everything you need to know to get through the holidays unscathed and still arm-in-arm with your boyfriend.
Before arriving at home, you should give your guy an idea of what to expect from your family. Each family has their quirks, interests, and the occasional crazy aunt, and your boyfriend should know what to expect going in. Not only will it give him an idea of what topics (or which people) to avoid, but it will also make it easier for him to hit it off with the group.
Similarly, let your family know what to expect from your guy. If it takes him a while to warm up to people, let them know that they'll need to help make him comfortable in the situation. Alternately, if he's the life of the party, a simple heads up will help to allow your family to prepare to give him that same energy. Also, take the time to let them know of any religious or personal differences you might have. Avoiding any sort of offensive conversation should be you and your family’s number one priority.
Start off by his side. You've known and grown to love this group, but for him, it's like the first day at a new job, full of important people to impress. Make the rounds with him, introduce him to those people you've long since been talking about, and let him get his first real feel for your family. After introductions have been made and conversations have slowed down, let him know not to cling onto you. It will speak highly of him (and consequently of you) if he can get comfortable enough with everyone to become a friend. Don’t sweat it if you’ve got a shy guy who would prefer to stay at your side! Stressing out over silly things like that can quickly turn an anticipated evening into one you can’t wait to end.
Also, remember that your family is NOT as weird as you think! Your dad’s stories might be too long and that one crazy aunt might end up in tears by the end of the night, but more often than not, your boyfriend will have had the same experiences back at his camp. No family is perfect, and it’s these little imperfections that not only make for a great holiday, but also for a group of people worth loving.
You’ve made it. Another holiday season down, but this time, with someone you love (or are maybe falling in love with) by your side. Give yourself a pat on the back! But more importantly, give your boyfriend a pat on the back. It’s stressful being in a new environment with new people, ESPECIALLY if that group consists entirely of your significant other’s family. Be sure to let him know how much you’ve appreciated having him, how much it’s meant to you, and how great of an impression he made. If he was willing to meet the fam, chances are your words or approval mean the world to him.
Best of luck, and happy holidays!!