Meeting Your In-laws For The First Time? Arm Yourself With These Tips
After the proposal, the next hurdle to scale is meeting the in-laws. Clearly, this is more than just another meet-and-greet. It is your first shot at convincing your partner’s parents you’re the right person to marry their child and make him or her happy for the rest of your life together. While meeting the in-laws can be nerve-wracking, remember that your partner adores you and chose you for a reason, so his or her parents are more likely to accept you too.
To help you navigate meeting the in-laws, the tips below will be very helpful.
1. Know the odds are in your favour
Despite the exaggerated scenes in movies like “Meet the Parents” or “Monster-in-Law”, your soon to be in-laws are actually rooting for you, They understand that marriage is meant to be a life-long commitment, so they truly want to like you. They want what’s best for their child, and if that means you, they want to love you. So just show up and shine. Be yourself when meeting the in-laws, and let your partner’s decision to be with you make them proud.
2. Feel confident about how you look
When it comes to what to wear, take your cues from what you know about your future in-laws. Are they super casual? If so, dressing up too much could make both them and you uncomfortable. Do they tend to dress a bit fancier? If so, dressing too casually could cause you to seem dismissive of this important event. Remember, first impressions stick, so take the time to select an outfit that’s appropriate for the occasion, but still in line with who you really are. Showing up a bit manicured, comfortable, and pulled together is going to come across as thoughtful and impressive.
3. Offer a small gift or goodie
Though you won’t need to do this each and every time you visit, It’s a nice gesture to bring something small when you’re meeting them for the first time. Just a little something as a token of respect is fine. If you meet at a restaurant, there’s really no need to bring anything. But if you go to their home, consider bringing a little gift along. A bottle of wine or dessert will be just fine.
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4. Prepare in advance
Before meeting the in-laws for the first time, make an effort to learn a bit about them. Ask your partner questions like where their parents and family are from, what type of activities they enjoy, and what topics of conversation they like to engage in. This can also help forewarn you about certain hot topics you might want to steer clear of mentioning. For the first meeting, avoid controversial issues like religion and politics. If your in-laws bring it up, it’s okay to have an opinion, just make sure to read the room. You’re about to know these people for a very long time.
5. Avoid checking emails or answering text messages
In our technologically saturated world, it’s hard to unplug, but if there’s one time you should stay tech-free and focused, it’s when meeting the in-laws for the first time. Too much time on the phone is going to make your in-laws feel you don’t appreciate their time. It also shows a lack of maturity. Make sure to make eye contact, stay in the room, and put your phone down.
6. Let them know you love their son or daughter
While it might seem forward to gush to them about the love of your life right off the bat, most of the time, it’s what they’re hoping to hear. While your partner’s parents want to know that you love their child, they definitely do not want to imagine the two of you getting intimate. So shelve the PDA when meeting the in-laws. A kiss on the cheek, holding hands or putting an arm around your partner on the couch is okay. But making out or heavy touching is not appropriate.
7. Follow up
After you meet the in-laws for the first time, consider sending a follow-up thank-you text or note. Little moments like this show the family that you appreciate the time they’ve given you, and that you look forward to spending more time together as a family. And of course, it will also bode well for the next big event, which is introducing your future in-laws to your own family.
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