How To Act Around Your Date's Parents

Whenever you have a girlfriend and the relationship is getting serious, it means that it is time to meet your date's parents. Many find that difficult to do, wondering whether their potential parents-in-law will like them or not. But it really is not that difficult to meet your date's parents. Follow these steps and they will love you.

  1. The first impression is the one that stays. It is really important that you look very nice in your first meeting with your date's parents. Put on nice clothes and a nice fragrance to make a good impression.
  2. Buy your date's mother flowers. It is old-fashioned, but it always works! Bringing some flowers to her can score you some points with her.
  3. Don't make out with your girlfriend in front of her parents. It's not only uncomfortable for them but also kind of rude. Her father may get mad and make a scene and that is not good for anyone. You should only put your arm around your girlfriend and that is about as hot as it should get.
  4. Remember table manners. You are probably going to eat lunch or dinner with them. It is great if you watch your table manners. Potential parents-in-law always look at these kinds of things: At lunch/dinner, you should not eat too much or too little, and you should remember to use your manners at all times.
  5. Talk with her father about man-related subjects. Even if you don't like sports very much, they are a great subject to talk to your potential father-in-law about. Also good are: CNN news, wars and traveling. The one subject you should really be careful talking about is college. A potential father-in-law is very interested in knowing what his daughter's boyfriend's plans are for the future. Tell him the truth, even if your plans are to become a rock star. Be honest with him.
  6. Say how much you like their daughter. Potential parents-in-law love to hear about that, but don't be too specific. You should never bring up the topic of sex. Unless your date's parents say something about it, don't talk about it. And if, in fact, they do mention sex, you should say it is something that should happen whenever is the right time for the couple, of course, wearing protection (mention that).
  7. Wash your hands if you go to the bathroom. It is always nice to be clean and, most importantly, look clean. And try your best not to go number two while in their place; that is really uncomfortable, not only to them, but to your girlfriend and you, of course.
  8. After the meal, offer to help with the dishes. It is good to show you are helpful. Watch out so you don't break anything. If that happens, you should apologize and offer to pay for the broken piece.
  9. When leaving, say goodbye in a not-so-informal way. It is nice to shake hands with the father and give the mother a kiss on the cheeks (of course!). Your girlfriend will likely walk you to the door. When she does, give her a smooth kiss on the lips.

Remember to be yourself in the first place. Don't be afraid of meeting her parents! It is a little scary at first but just be cool and remember how much you like your girlfriend, because meeting her parents means you are going to the next level. Meeting your date's parents will definitely give you butterflies in the stomach but the butterflies are worth it.


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I question the part about kissing Mom on the cheek. I certainly wouldn't want my daughter's boyfriend to kiss me on the cheek. It could also be misconstrued by Dad - and some cultures would consider it as completely taboo.

By Kathy Steinemann