1. Understand that his family are people. Just like you and just like your family!
His family is not a bunch of monsters. His parents are no different than your own parents. Sure, they may have different personalities, different ideas, and even different ways of life. But underneath it all they are just people. They will have their own insecurities, and want you to like them just as much as you want them to like you.
Creating a good impression will be on their minds, and his mother in particular will want to impress you with her house, cooking and set up. Make sure that instead of focusing just on how YOU come across, make a point to make them his family feel comfortable and appreciated too.
2. Try and find out what kind of people his parents are – ask your boyfriend!
Don’t keep your nerves and concerns to yourself, bubbling away under the surface. ASK your boyfriend what his parents are like as people.
Find out as much as you can about them, so that you will be prepared for any foibles that they may have. For instance, if he tells you that his dad is argumentative and his dad then argues a little with you, you know not to take it personally. You might even be able to take it as a compliment – it could mean his dad is comfortable enough around you to be his usual self!
3. Lay down some ground rules and agree on boundaries before you get there
If you have some concerns such as ‘please don’t leave me alone for a long time with your Mother’ because you are shy or nervous and feel that this would leave you panicking, voice these concerns to your boyfriend and give him the chance to not only reassure you, but agree on some ground rules with you.
Tell him that you can handle five minutes but no more than ten maximum and then he will have a better idea of how to meet YOUR needs whilst you are there and avoid any upset
4. Choose your outfit carefully. You’re meeting his parents, not hitting the town with your girlfriends.
Sounds obvious right? But you’d be surprised how many girls actually go way over the top when meeting their guys family for the first time. Keep it simple. Jeans and a nice top are fine, as is a nice dress. A little black dress is always a safe bet but make it a classic, stylish one, and keep important bits covered!
Keep yourself demure, but at the same time, don’t try and be something that you are not and go to the other end of the spectrum. If you’re more of a jeans kind of gal, then stick with it. Wear something that reflects your personality but take it down a notch or two.
5. Keep your makeup and accessories classy and stylish too
Don’t go in a stylish dress, but team it with stripper heels or a lot of bling and eye liner! Keep your entire look simple. A good concealer is a must, and a coating of mascara and lip gloss will leave you looking polished and feminine. No to layers of foundation, red lipstick and false eyelashes. Save that for date night!
6. Watch what and how you eat and drink. Avoid alcohol
Remember to eat in a ladylike manner. Manners are a must, mind your p’s and q’s and remember the basics such as waiting for everyone to start eating at the same time, and go easy on the alcohol.
It can be so easy to drink a little too much too quickly because you want to calm your nerves. But before you know it, your mouth is running away with you and you have created a first impression that leaves a LOT to be desired. Complement the chef on his or her meal too. You are a guest so behave like one.
7. Try and relax and enjoy it. This may be your future family
If all goes well, they will love you just as much as you love them and this could very well be your future family. One day you will look back at all of this and wonder how on earth you made such a big deal about meeting them. Your boyfriend would not take you there if he felt it inappropriate, so trust in his invitation and go and be yourself – how could they not like you?
Try and enjoy the whole experience, because you only get first times once. Meeting new people is great so soak it up and believe in your ability to make the whole event a success!
So, there you have it. Some simple but effective rules to follow in order to make the first meeting with his parents a success! The main rule is to keep it simple. Remember to breathe, and it will all fall into place. While you should definitely think before you speak, you should also let who you are shine through any conversation. Wishing you success on your first and future family ventures!