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When Meeting Her Parents for the First Time


When you’ve been dating a woman and the relationship starts to take a serious turn, there will come a time that you will be meeting her parents for the first time.  You want to make a good first impression because after all, they may be your future in-laws.  You’re there to pass the test, a sort of interview.  And you better make sure you do a good job right?

When Meeting Her Parents for the First Time

This first meeting may set the tone for the rest of your encounters and you want to present yourself in the most favorable light. You also want to make your girlfriend feel at ease and comfortable to bring you around her parents and her family.

Remember Meet the Parents?  In this hilarious comedy, we see everything that could possibly go wrong when the guy meets the girl’s parents for the first time.

meet the parents movie

Ben Stiller and Robert De Niro in a hilariously awkward scene from Meet the Parents.

10 Do’s and Dont’s for Meeting Her Parents for the First Time

1.  Do your research. What are they like? I’m sure your girlfriend will be more than happy to give you all the talking points and the inside scoop.  Are they the stuffy formal type or the casual laid back type.  What do they do for fun? Are there any topics that are off limit.  Remember that you are being judged and evaluated as a future husband candidate even if your relationship is not at the stage yet.  You want to have some information so that you can glean some nuggets on which you can connect.

2.  Be punctual.  Being on time demonstrates that you value their invitation and that their time is also important.  It will also show you in a good light.  Punctual people are dependable and organized.  These are good traits for a potential son-in-law who will make a good husband to their daughter and father to their grandchildren.

You’re there to pass the test, a sort of interview. And you better make sure you’ve done your homework!

3.  Be well dressed and well groomed. Dress appropriately and accordingly for the place and time of day will show many things about you. Unfortunately, appearance does matter and you will be perceived as being more intelligent, more trustworthy, and more successful based on the clothes you’re wearing.  Make sure you know ahead of time where the meet-up will take place.  Will you be visiting their house for the holidays?  Will you be going to a picnic in the park?  Are you meeting at a restaurant or casual bar?  Make sure you’re loaded with information so that you don’t miss a step.

4.  Bring a gift.  Everyone likes receiving gifts and your girlfriend’s parents are no different.  Again, remember how you need to gather as much information about them as you can?  You need to know if her mother likes flowers.  If so, what kind.  Does she like roses or orchids?  Perhaps she loves little bonsai trees.  And how about her dad? Does he smoke cigars?  Does he drink Bourbon? A nice bottle of expensive Bourbon would surely impress.  And if you don’t have the budget for his and her gifts, or even extravagant gifts, a nice bottle of wine would be greatly appreciated.

5.  Don’t discuss politics or religion. Not discussing politics or religion is a no-brainer but sometimes people do want to bring up the topics just to test you out and put you on the spot.  Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion and your view, but be prepared to do it in a respectful way if it dissents with theirs.  If the conversation gets heated just listen to what they have to say.  Once you get close to her parents, you’ll have plenty of time to sort out the world’s political and religious problems.

This first meeting may set the tone for the rest of your encounters and you want to present yourself in the most favorable light.

6.  No PDA.  You shouldn’t overdo the public displays of affection while in mixed company anyway, but when you’re meeting her parents for the first time, you should not be all over your girlfriend in a way that would make her parents feel uncomfortable.  Save your physical display of affection for your intimate moments.

7.  Be respectful and polite.  Depending on your age, you may need to address her parents as Mr. and Mrs. So-and-S0.  Yes, it’s the 21 century, but it’s a sign of deference and respect.  If they’re the casual type they will ask you to be on first name basis but don’t do it unless they initiate.  And I don’t need to remind you to keep your language clean. No cursing. You’d be surprised how many people are put off by unnecessary cursing.

8.  Be present and engaged.  It goes without saying that if you’re meeting her parents for the first time, you’ll be engaged in the conversation and not just sit in a corner and not contribute to the active dialogue.  Make sure you have something to say.  Have engaging eye contact and don’t interrupt when others are speaking.  And most importantly, please turn the cell phone off.

Make sure you have something to say and are actively engaged in the conversation.

9.  Be a good houseguest.  No one likes a houseguest who’s disrespectful of their home.  If you are meeting them at their house, make sure you’re a considerate houseguest.  Clean up after yourself, put the toilet seat down, don’t eat them out of house and home, don’t help yourself to the fridge unless you have been given the green light.  If staying overnight, you may have to sleep in separate bedrooms, and you need to be okay with that.  She may be your girlfriend but she’s their daughter.

10.  Thank them.  Make sure you express your gratitude for having you over and taking the time to meet with you.  Compliment your girlfriend on her parents and let her know you had a pleasant experience.  A little thank you goes a long way because you’re showing your good manners and politeness.

Meeting Her Parents for the First Time is An Important Milestone in Your Relationship

drinking champagne after meeting the in-laws for the first time

Meeting her parents is a big step and you know it.  She wants her parents to get to know the man she is in love with, the one she’s planning on having a serious relationship with.  She wants to feel proud of you and she wants her parents and family to be accepting of you. The parents, in turn,  want to know that their daughter is with someone of quality.

Making a good first impression will remove any awkwardness and put her parents at ease that their daughter has brought home a very nice and decent man.  It’s a win-win situation for everyone.  The parents will love you.  Your girlfriend will love you and love her parents for loving you.  And you’ll be in the middle of this big happy family. All this because you were the perfect gentleman who everyone can rally behind and be proud of! You passed the test with flying colors!