How To Make A Great First Impression With His/Her Family
So, you’re meeting the family? There are few things more intimidating than making a good first impression. What if they don’t like you? What if they like you too much but the relationship doesn’t end up working out? What if you love the parents but don’t like the siblings? What if her grandmother makes you feel bad about yourself? There are a lot of questions that will run through your mind before meeting your partner’s parents.
Here are 10 tips for a good first impression
The first encounter with his/her family is when the pressure to excel in your relationship sets in. Here is a cheat sheet to help you prepare before the big meeting.
1. Treat it like a big deal
Meeting the family of the person you love (or might love) is a big deal. It is okay to talk yourself down and remind yourself that everything will be okay, but treating the situation like a significant step in your life will mean a lot to your partner.
Think of how you felt when he or she met your family, and if you have not made that step yet, think of how you will feel when you do. Meeting each other’s families should be significant. Treat it as such.
2. Offer help
When you finally meet his family, offer your assistance to his mother, father, sister, brother, grandmother, or anyone else. Are you having dinner? Offer to help chop vegetables or make the salad for his family. Are you out to eat? Offer to pick up the tab, or pay the tip, or cover the drinks.
If you are going to the movies, offer to pick up the concessions, or run out to grab extra napkins for the popcorn grease. Whatever the situation, you can offer your help and make a great first impression on the family.
3. Be yourself
It is an important reminder to be yourself when you meet your partner’s family. Your partner likes or loves you for a reason, and hopefully that reason has something to do with who you are in your truest form. Let his or her family see that part of you and the feeling will be mutual. Being yourself is a great way to make sure that his or her family is getting to know the true you.
4. Know everyone’s names
Before you meet your partner’s family, you should brush up on everyone’s names, careers, kids’ names, and anything else interesting about them. Coming into a situation with some knowledge about who everyone is will be the best step toward you making friends with the family. They will already know everything (or almost everything!) about you, so why not make the playing field even?
5. Bring something over
If you are meeting his or her parents at their home, definitely bring something over. If his or her parents are not drinkers, skip the wine for a nice bottle of sparkling water and some fancy cheese. If you are having an outdoor barbecue, bring something appropriate like an extra can of propane, or the ingredients for s’mores. Whatever the situation, there is always something to bring along. Bringing a gift (even flowers or a succulent plant!) is a great way to show that you are thoughtful and considerate.
6. Pay compliments
“I love your dress, Mrs. ____!” Even the simplest compliment will be everlasting. Making sure you are genuinely aware of your surroundings, and complimenting them as such, is a great way to make a solid first impression on your partner’s family.
Even more so than a small compliment about a dress or a kitchen remodel, complimenting your partner’s parents on how they raised him or her is the ultimate compliment. Thanking your partner’s parents for raising such an incredible human is a great compliment.
7. Share yourself
Though you will likely be focused on getting to know your partner’s family, it is important to share bits and pieces about yourself as well. Sharing information about your family, your upbringing, your career goals, your interests, and your general history is a great way to make your partner’s family know that you care about them getting to know you as much as the reverse.
8. Ask questions
And the best way to get to know someone is to ask them questions about themselves. Sure, you might know enough information about your partner’s family from him or her, but why not find out more for yourself?
Asking your partner’s mother or father about what they do, or how they got into their field, or their childhoods, is one way to make a great first impression. Once his or her family can see that you care about them as much as they care about you, everything will go smoothly from there.
9. Ask about their love story
Everyone loves a love story, right? Whether your partner’s parents are married, or if they have married other people, it is still nice to ask how and where they met, and how they knew it was right, and why they decided to get married when they did.
If your partner’s parents aren’t married, it is still okay to discuss such matters, just be sure you are acting sensitively when it comes to the big questions. Everyone loves talking about their own love story but make sure it is appropriate for the situation to discuss other people’s.
10. Be confident
As always, confidence is a great thing—though it is not always achievable. Having confidence in intimidating situations is tough—though it is not impossible! If you remind yourself that you are there with your partner, happy and in love (or deep in like), it will remind you that you are a wonderful person, you are worthy of his or her love, and this family will adore you. Be yourself, hold your head up high, and make them love you.
Making a good first impression can be intimidating, but if you follow the above steps, you will be successful and happy that you went through the process. Think of the future—you can only meet someone for the first time once! After that, they will love you.