Do you have any parent-meeting advice?

So I have a BOYfriend, and he wants me to meet his parents and I am freakin' out! I don't know how to act around parents at all. My boyfriend says "be yourself" but that's crap! - Sara G. from Foxboro, MA

When it comes to the boyfriend’s parental units, you have to remember to treat them the same as your parents.  In this day and age, it seems like so many people forget to respect their elders, and others tend to remember it and get a little too comfortable.  The way I see it is that  you should go about it like you’re meeting his best friends for the very first time.  And yes, you should be yourself.  If you are a funny person, go about making others laugh the way you always do.  If you’re the shy type, take your time to open up.  Conversation is key to so much in life, even if it is just small talk.  Ask questions about them.  Find out what they do for work, where they grew up, what they enjoy doing in their spare time, what they eat, their heritage, etc.  Everyone loves talking about movies, or novels, or even the news. . .  but remember, NEVER talk politics or religion ever!!!  Those are two topics that everyone has their opinions about, and like assholes, everyone has one.  So beware!

I suppose you can really look at it like this:  The older you get, the more you date, the more the boyfriend’s parents have the potential of becoming your in-laws one day. . . so if you want to start early and make a good relationship for yourself, start to think of them as the second set of parents you never had.  And don’t be afraid if you don’t get along all that well.  Some people end up getting married and despise their in-laws. But don’t take life too serious at this point, that is unless he’s asking for your hand in marriage.   Just go with it, and remember what I mentioned:  No politics, no religion, and definitely do not bring up the obvious that you are sleeping with their son.

Ohhhh man..the much anticipated (and often dreaded) initial parent meeting.  These can either go really well, or really bad.  First and foremost, if your boyfriend is pressuring you to meet his P’s, he is either A) super all about you and wants to include you in his broader span of life, moreso than just dates and bumpin’ uglies, OR B) he’s super psycho and needs his parentals approval of everything he does in life.  I’m gonna go ahead and take a stab that it’s looking more like (A) is your situation based off your question.  It sounds like you’ve been dating long enough to where it’s kinda time to take that extra step and meet his fam.  If that’s the not case, and you guys have been together a week, I’d say RUN FOR THE HILLS! But anyways, back to the point at hand…

When it comes to meeting your significant other’s parents, all you CAN do is be yourself…to an extent.  That being said, when opening up to them and answering all the typical questions other parents ask (“where do you work?”, “what do you do in your spare time?”, “are you a serial public masturbator?”) be respectful of what responses you give in lieu of what his p’s might be sensitive to.  For example: if you’re super into music, GREAT! Use this as a topic of convo to learn about his parent’s interests.   Being proactive in the convo is always a plus when it comes to their initial opinion.   HOWEVER, using music as an example again,  if you’re taste ascribes to a more demented path (i.e. Norwegian Black Metal). mayyyyybe leave that part out of the conversation.  His parents might not like hearing about how you sacrifice goats for shits and giggles at Impaled Nazarene shows…just saying.

The point is this: think about when you meet someone for the first time and how you perceive them.  You know when someone is going out of their way to blow smoke up your ass.  They just look plain dumb, right?  But you also know when someone is being genuine and honest.  Treat them with respect, but also stand your ground and be confident in yourself and who you are.  No need to put up walls, but some things can be on a need-to-know basis, if ya catch my drift.  Use your own judgement dudette and you should be all bueno!