If things are moving on to the next level, then, from being a sassy girlfriend, it is now time to become a classy wife and a daughter-in-law (although no one's asking you to stop being sassy anymore!)
Are You and Your Boyfriend on The Same Page?Is it just a casual hangout with his folks, or is it your boyfriend's way of telling you that he wishes to take the relationship to the next level? Make sure the cards have been laid out on the table, and most importantly, gauge whether 'you' are ready to do this.
Scared? Overwhelmed? Nervous to bits? Confused? Just what you are feeling right now, aren't you? Are you still fishing for ways and means to warm up to his folks, and not screw up? Buzzle comes to your rescue, yet again! Work your way out with these amazing words of advice.
Arrive on TimeThe first impression, without a doubt, lasts the longest. And unless you want to throw away this one golden chance of impressing his folks, reach the venue on time. It doesn't necessarily have to be a dot-on-the-clock arrival though. Likewise, you don't want to arrive too early and catch his folks off guard. Arrive well in time, which gives you a window of getting used to the place and family members.
Bring a GiftYou don't necessarily and compulsorily have to do this. But it does add a touch of warmth and belonging (bring something and score brownie points, would you!?). Talk to your boyfriend about his family, and find out what they prefer. A bunch of fresh flowers, a bottle of sparkling wine, a box of customized chocolates-these are some simple yet sweet ideas you could choose from. Your present/s should be all about class, love, and attachment. Something that tells them that you are familiar with their tastes, likes, and dislikes.
Dress AppropriatelyDressing appropriately not only speaks volumes about your character and lifestyle, but also shows them that you respect your guy's folks and their values. Showing up in a casual outfit at a family get-together (and such an important one, too), could be a downer and create a bad impression.
Do Your ResearchSit your boyfriend down, and ask him questions. Questions about his parents and his family, their upbringing, their interests, and their lives. This will help you get the ball rolling once you meet the family. Make sure he tells you about little things that should be kept in mind; for example, the drinking etiquette at his place. This way, you know what you are dealing with, your boyfriend loves you more, and his family is impressed with your knowledge about them. Win-win all the way!
Do Raise a ToastTo new beginnings, to new friendships, to the people at the table! By this time, you have gelled well with the folks and have gotten pretty comfortable in their company. A little celebration doesn't hurt now, does it? You want to tell them how happy you are? Do it with a short and sweet toast. And keep it short. The toast as well as the drink.
Be Polite and ComplimentaryCompliments - they elate everyone. Your boyfriend's parents are no different. Compliment his mother about how well her house has been done, or how delicious the meal is. Appreciate his father's taste in reading, when you are shown around the home library. If asked for your opinion about something, and you don't seem too excited by it, admit politely.
Offer to Help Before and AfterOffering help at the end of a meal is an indication of your upbringing and family culture. Not only does it tell the parents about your accommodating and adjusting nature, but it also throws light on the ways and manners of your family. Stay long enough to make it easier for them to wind up, but not long enough to impose your presence. Unless you are invited to stay the night over, don't extend your stay, and take leave at a decent time.
Assuming you plan to do all the right stuff, and appear all warm, polite and concerned, there are certain things that you have to avoid completely. Meeting his parents should ideally, be like meeting your female friend's parents. But the things mentioned below are an absolute no-no.
No PDAShow love, not lust. Sincere appreciation, words of love, and subtle hints of mischief, these would still be allowed, but do not throw yourself on him, and engage in a heated moment of passion and euphoria right there, in front of his parents. It is awkward and unacceptable, no matter how modern a family is. He is still their son, they are still his parents. Period.
Don't Get DrunkNo girl in her right mind would do this! (Touché!) The spirit of the occasion, the happiness in the air, the positivity of the situation, the warmth of an extended family together invite you into a place that is strictly forbidden at the moment. This is the time to hold yourself together and not lose it. If you really want to make it work with your beau and his family, one night of not drinking is a small price to pay.
Don't Pretend or Be DishonestHalf-knowledge is dangerous. Unless you are completely sure about yourself, don't indulge in discussions. Refrain from making a fool out of yourself by pretending to be something you are not and talking about something that you know nothing about. In the moment, you just might do something or say something that works in your favor and impresses them, but if you wish to make it in the long run, this is something you must completely avoid.
Avoid Politics and ReligionTalking about politics and religion has known to lead to unending, heated arguments. Unless that's your plan for the dinner, a suggestion would be to steer clear of these topics. However, if someone is to bring them up, be clear and firm, yet polite, on your thoughts and opinions. It doesn't necessarily have to match those of your boyfriend's or his family.
The key is to 'just be yourself'. And trust me, the lock never changes. Honesty is expected, appreciated, and rewarded. Always. There would be no better chance than this one, to let his family know what you are made of, why your boyfriend chose you, and why should they accept you. Everything else mentioned above is secondary, but not any less important. I'll leave you with something that I strongly believe in: Believe in what could be, and it will be!