How I coped with nerves when meeting my SO’s parents
Visiting your significant other over summer can be a highlight – but if you’re meeting their parents for the first time, your excitement can quickly become overpowered by nerves. Here’s how to deal with it:
Focus on the excitement
If you’re in a healthy relationship, you should be stoked to see your partner! Focus on the excitement that comes with organising a trip to see them (if you’re visiting them at their parents’ home) and remember why you’re going. When meeting the parents don’t let the nerves make you dread the visit or even cancel it or put it off.
Your SO can’t be too different from their parents…
If your SO has healthy parental relationships, chances are, the apple won’t have fallen far from the tree. The kind of things your SO appreciates in you will be appreciated by their parents too, no doubt. Their parents will expect you to be great in any case – your SO has probably been gushing about how wonderful you are – and if their child has found someone who makes them happy, surely that’s all that matters anyway, right? They aren’t looking to catch you out, more likely to put a face to a name and get to know you a bit better.
And be chatty, but for the shy ones among us, this can be a bit tougher. Smiling lots (not too much though – don’t be creepy) gives off good vibes and shows your potential in-laws that you’re a happy person. When it comes to chit-chat, ask lots of questions, and again, remember that they aren’t too different from your partner! If you have things in common with your SO, you’ll doubtless have things in common with their parents. If in doubt, let them lead the conversation until you feel happy to pitch in with something.
It doesn’t have to be an expensive bottle of wine (but if you can afford it, great!); it could be some chocolates, flowers, even a card. Just anything as a little token of thanks if you’re staying in their house or having dinner there will work wonders on parents. If you’re anxious to make the best impression possible, something small will hopefully place you right in their good books.
They won’t be following you around all the time!
It’s easy to forget that their parents won’t be scrutinising your every move. You might only have to spend a few hours with them in total – maybe even less. You’ve come to see your SO at the end of the day, and they’re the main deal. Worry about what they think, if anything. You’re not dating their parents!