Meeting your boyfriend’s family can be nerve-wracking, whether it’s the first or even the fiftieth time. It’s important to impress them and reassure them that you’re the perfect girlfriend. After all, these are the people who love your boyfriend the most – and their stamp of approval can go a long way in helping you thrive as a couple.
Sometimes, however, things aren’t as rosy as you build them up in your head. While there’s a good chance his parents will love you, there’s still the off-chance that they won’t – or that you might not like them.
While most of us desire a positive relationship with our lover’s family, constructing such a relationship can be challenging. Blending in with someone else’s family can be difficult since most of us have our own views about what a home should be like – and sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you just can’t bring yourself to like them.
So what can be done? Keep reading to find out.
1. Have an honest discussion with your partner.
Be honest about what you think of his family, but don’t be hasty. Get to know his family more – and if you still despise them, tell your partner about it. This is crucial in order to avoid any uncomfortable situations.
It’s also for your partner to comprehend that it’s not your responsibility to like his family. We don’t get to pick and choose who we like.
Also, if your partner is unaware of your sentiments towards his family, he may not understand why you behave differently around his family and relatives – so he must be aware of your feelings, no matter what.
2. Be clear in your communication.
If you usually communicate with your partner’s family through your partner but feel that things get confusing, consider talking to them directly. This not only demonstrates your respect for them, but it could also prevent misconceptions and keep your boyfriend out of any fight.
3. Hold your ground.
The comments you might receive from his relatives can be demeaning and hurtful, but you must know how to manage the situation. Those who prefer to make fun of you when you’re around, knowing you won’t be able to do anything about it are implicitly suggesting that you accept such conduct, even if it’s from your partner’s parents.
You must always defend yourself – but also exercise caution. You’ll have to be quiet at times since you don’t want to cause an issue for yourself or your lover. You can be snarky if they are – just be careful not to come out as obnoxious.
4. Stay away from them, if you can.
If you can avoid it, the best option is to avoid being with his family. You can forgo the family get-togethers, your partner can stay behind with you, and so forth. There are numerous strategies to avoid his relatives in such a way that they do not realize you dislike them.
5. Maintain a respectful demeaner.
Never forget that the secret to a parent’s heart (or anyone’s, for the matter) is courtesy. Even if you don’t like them, it’s healthier for your relationship if they love you.
Also, they are your partner’s parents – so treat them with respect by being as nice as possible while maintaining a safe space. You don’t have to bombard them with questions, but do respond to each question they ask politely.
6. Don’t expect him to take sides.
Do not put yourself in this scenario. Don’t push your partner to take sides; it never ends well. But if it’s too late, and you’ve already had a falling out with his family, don’t drag him into it. You must realize that your partner has no say in the type of family he’s a member of.
Many women don’t like their boyfriend’s family and expect him to support them. Don’t be offended if your guy declines to participate in the brawl. It doesn’t necessarily imply that he’s a knucklehead.
Remember that it was his parents who reared him and shaped him into the person he is now.
7. Kindness is the way to go.
Take the high road, and show your finest etiquette – even if you believe your boyfriend’s family doesn’t appreciate it. “Please” and “thank you” should always be said. Be gentle and considerate, because it’s difficult to dislike or find fault with someone who is so sweet.
Be the first one to help your boyfriend’s family, even if they don’t ask for it – and let them know you come in peace. It’s a good idea to be nice to someone you don’t like.
8. Don’t stay in their home while visiting.
Long periods of time spent together are often what pushes folks over the brink during the holidays. If you can arrange it, stay with a friend, rent an Airbnb, or secure a hotel room. Make every effort to avoid spending the night in their home. Having a safe place where you can voice your frustrations and re-charge is quite beneficial for your peace of mind.
9. Recognize that your partner’s family bonds existed before you met.
The actions of your partner may irritate you. Suddenly, the fearless person you know is unable to take a stand against his parents! This may irritate you, but try not to dwell on it or try to change them.
The way your partner interacts with his parents (and siblings) is unlikely to change significantly. However, if any component of this relationship or any family problem looks to be damaging or becoming stressful for your boyfriend, you should talk to a counselor about it.
10. Don’t get mad at him for his family’s behavior.
This is arguably the most crucial point to keep in mind. If his family treats you badly, your boyfriend will most likely be embarrassed. Don’t become enraged with him. It’s one thing to say you don’t like their conduct; it’s quite another to constantly complain about and criticize them.
This is especially important if you don’t meet them very often. Let bygones be bygones and spare your boyfriend the drama. Focus on your relationship instead.
11. Don’t complain about them all the time.
Don’t mention his family too much if the first thought that comes to mind when you talk to your partner is that you don’t like them. In fact, keep your interaction regarding them to a minimum, and avoid following them on social media. It would also be beneficial if they knew less about you.
Ask your boyfriend not to give out your mobile number to them as well. Parents (particularly mothers) frequently request contact details for some reason, and to avoid this, simply ask your boyfriend to come up with something and not to give the number to them.
12. Pinpoint the problem.
It’s all too simple to say something like, “I just can’t stand my SO’s parents.” However, if you want this relationship to stay alive for the long term, you should try to figure out what’s producing your unfavorable feelings.
Digging into your emotions and past behaviors to find the source of the problem might be challenging. However, understanding the nature of your feelings might aid in the development of a strategy.
If you discover that your hate derives from a poor first impression, you can make amends in daily discussions. You can simply stop mentioning these feelings if you know they’re the result of social concern debates.
13. Be polite.
Even if someone mocks you, you should never retaliate harshly. Be careful with your language, and avoid displaying symptoms of impatience. If at all possible, avoid letting your irritation show.
That will make you an instant victor in such circumstances, and you’ll demonstrate your sincerity by always being polite towards everyone, no matter how harsh their words.
14. Show a unified front.
Make a plan to stay together with your partner beforehand. Allow your partner to step in and shift the conversation if his family is talking about an extremely sensitive topic that bothers you.
You may not influence his parents’ behavior, but the certainty that your boyfriend is extremely supportive of you and your opinions is the most crucial factor.
15. Put the booze down.
To get over the agony, you may be compelled to dull your wits with a drink while in their presence – but don’t! Keep yourself sober, even if his entire family is partying, so that you don’t lose it and go off on them.
16. Get out of the house as much as possible.
Ice skate, go to the gym, volunteer to go to the supermarket to get forgotten dinner ingredients, and so on. Making excuses to leave the house will help break up the monotony. Even if they participate in the action, a change of location can encourage people to behave better than they would on their own turf.
17. Always bring a gift.
Another great idea is to always bring a gift for your boyfriend’s family, whenever you meet them. It doesn’t need to be something huge. Just show them you care by bringing along a souvenir that you know they might like.
The more thoughtful the gift is, the more it shows the depth of your kindness and sincerity towards them. Giving gifts might also help soften your heart towards them.
18. Learn more about his family’s culture.
There’s a good chance you don’t like your boyfriend’s family much because they’re just too different from you. Maybe they’re too loud, too serious, or fight too much. Perhaps they’re very different from your boyfriend or your own family.
The best way to like them a little more is by trying to be a little bit more like them.
19. Determine whether or not this is a deal-breaker.
Even though you don’t want to think about it, you may need to leave your relationship at some point. While you might wish for the honeymoon period to stretch indefinitely, you must be truthful with yourself about your deal breakers in the end.
The majority of people have a good sense of what their deal breakers are. You must determine whether you are ethically and mentally on the same page. It can be a big issue if you and your partner are too far apart, or if you can’t live with his family being your inlaws.
20. Figure out if it’s always going to be this way.
In a stressful scenario, knowing that you have your partner’s support is vital – and not having their support might make an already shaky relationship worse.
Relationships can be ruined by resentment, so any topic that is essential to one partner cannot be ignored by the other without jeopardizing the relationship.
If your significant other refuses to listen to your sentiments or you know you’ll never be able to have a pleasant chat with his parents, it could be time to end things.
The Bottom Line
Dealing with parents you don’t like can be difficult, and it can be a stressful and very unpleasant position to be in. It doesn’t matter why you despise something; it’s just the way things are.
Consider whether you can endure this trial, especially if your relationship is developing into something more serious. In the long run, family is quite important – so consider carefully if you want to cope with these concerns over the long haul.