Every guy knows how nerve-racking and scary it can be to finally meet that girl you’ve been crushing on. Whether she’s the cutie from your class, that girl from the bar last weekend or a friend of a friend, nearly everyone is familiar with the sweaty palms, nervous blinks and minor stuttering that can happen when talking with someone we are interested in.
Soon, after getting to know this girl, all those nervous tendencies fade away. That is until it is time to meet her parents! You thought talking with her was nerve-racking? Wait till her papa bear and mama bear are “interrogating” you and sizing you up again past boyfriends to see where you rank.
The holidays are coming, meaning many boyfriends will be painstakingly meeting their girlfriends’ parents for the very first time. If you find yourself in this boat and you know it is sinking fast, read on to discover five tips to make sure you are a total gentleman with class when meeting her parents.
One of the simplest, yet most effective things you can do to make yourself look better is having manners. While everyone should possess manners on the basis of being a decent human being, this isn’t always the case within our society.
When you meet your partner’s parents—especially all you young gentleman out there—it is essential that you be on your best behavior and answer every question with a smile and a “thank you” or “please” if appropriate. Upon meeting her father, it is important that you shake his hand firmly and maintain eye contact while introducing yourself.
Being polite within a conversation is very important as well. Listen more than you talk, but don’t refrain from interjecting when you have something to say. If asked a question, answer it thoroughly and honestly (if appropriate) and don’t shy away from asking questions yourself.
All in all, just remember to smile and use the very manners your parents taught you as a kid—a mere please and thank you can go a long way.
Before you’ve even had the chance to open your mouth, your outfit has already said numerous things for you. Whenever meeting someone for the first time, how you dress can say a lot about who you are. When meeting your girlfriend’s parents for the first time, overdressing is far better than underdressing.
While it does depend on where, when, and why you’re meeting her parents—for dinner at a nice restaurant, a movie night at her house or even a family party—it is essential that you dress to impress. For those of you who lack a basic understanding of style, a collared shirt will do the trick most of the time, but not always.
Make sure your pants are clean and ironed, your shoes without holes or dirty laces, and your hair neat and complete. Basically, you should dress in business casual attire, and you’ll be set.
Engage in Conversation
Don’t just sit there quietly and observe awkwardly—engage yourself in the conversation! While conversing with your girlfriend’s family can seem intimidating due to being the only outsider on inside jokes and not being familiar with people they are talking about, don’t let that deter your efforts on the next subject.
When talking with your partner’s parents, it is important that you never pretend to be someone else or pretend that you know more than you really do. I understand wanting to impress them, but the backfire from such an effort could be relationship-ending.
Talk when you have something to add to the conversation and feel comfortable doing so, but don’t merely repeat what someone else has said to merely be a part of the conversation. Keep things appropriate, of course, and never, ever bring up religion or politics.
Don’t Bring Up Drama
You’re going to be doing a lot of talking with your girlfriend’s parents—I mean, they’d like to get to know the guy dating their daughter, of course—so be ready for such. There will be questions coming at you from every which angle, and, hopefully, your girlfriend will be at your side helping in any way she can.
When being asked about your guys’ relationship—which will happen, so don’t be surprised—do not, I repeat, do not, mention any past drama between you two. Bringing this up will not only upset your girlfriend, but also make for an uncomfortable and awkward situation.
Don’t badmouth your job or your roommate or even a movie; if you talk about everything in a positive light, then you will seem like a positive person. And you’re the man in the relationship for Pete’s sake; it is your girlfriend’s job to talk about drama.
Don’t Drink Too Much
This tip is honestly one of the most important ones, and sometimes the most overlooked one. I understand, meeting your girlfriend’s parents for the very first time is a stressful and nerve-racking occasion, but that doesn’t mean that throwing back a couple of IPAs or cocktails is going to help.
Sure, a drink here and there will help calm the nerves and make you a bit more talkative, but it is important that it remains “a drink here and there.” If you’re at a nice restaurant, it should be easy to refrain from drinking too much as it’d be noticeable each time you order a new drink, but if you’re at a family gathering, that’s when things can get out of hand quickly.
With that being said, a two maximum is my personal rule. It’s enough to feel loose and comfortable, yet the perfect amount to remain mature and sharp.
If you want to learn more about this, check out the video below! Or if you’re ready to meet someone new, check out cupid.ly the #1 new dating app.