Meeting Your Significant Other’s Parents for the First Time

Alexa Johnson

There comes a time between three to six months into a college relationship where your significant other believes it’s a good idea for you to – yup, you guessed it: meet the parents. Of course, you expected this fateful day to come. But that still doesn’t mean it’s not as nerve-racking as a 5-hour final on molecular biology!

When meeting your gal/guy’s ‘rents for the first time, remember your goal is to try and leave an amazing impression. You want them to genuinely like you and accept you as a suitable candidate for dating their beloved child. That said, bring a gift. You’re an underage college student, so toting the classic token of wine is unacceptable. You’re also a poor college student, so an extravagant fruit and candy display will obviously scream that your own parents’ purchased it. A heartwarming gesture might be to bring a delicious platter of cookies that you baked yourself!

You’re worried that their dad will transform into Mr. Interrogator. And he probably will. As well as their mom. Don’t sweat it! This is supposed to be a friendly conversation, not a press conference. Don’t be afraid to ask the Mr. and Mrs. some questions of your own, like, ‘who’s your favorite sports team?’ or ‘are you planning on any vacations for the holidays?’

Another important thing you want to keep in mind is how you dress. You may be meeting them for dinner on a Friday night, but that doesn’t mean you should be dressing like it is, well, Friday night. A cute yet conservative dress with a matching cardigan will do. Also a nice dress shirt and khaki’s (with a tie if the restaurant is super fancy).

Lastly (and this should be obvious), skip the PDA! You know, no ‘public displays of affection.’ Mom and dad may have a hunch that you two do more than stare lovingly into each other’s eyes when you’re alone together, but let’s just keep it at that. So that means no kissing, handholding, footsie under the table, etc. You two can keep your paws off each other for a few hours, can’t you?

As long as you keep these rules in mind, you’ll be fine. (Surly the ‘rents of your loving S.O. have to be cool if they reproduced such a perfect kid for you to love!) Just stay calm, cool, and collected. Most importantly, be yourself. Remember, it could be worse. At least you don’t have to worry about mama breaking out the embarrassing baby pictures!

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