Is Your Relationship Ready for Thanksgiving?

Ready for Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving With the Family

It’s that time of year when families get together to celebrate, give thanks and perhaps share tales of former Thanksgiving dinners. And if you’re in a relationship with someone your family’s never met, it’s also time to decide if your relationship is ready for Thanksgiving with the family or if you should just fly solo for the festivities.

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Home for the Holidays

Usually when faced with this holiday dilemma for the first time (or fourth or fifth) your brain conjures up scenes from every comedic/nightmarish movie you’ve ever watched about families meeting significant others during the holidays. And if you’ve ever remarked that people in those movies remind you of your family, this becomes an even heavier consideration. You may be wondering, “Is this relationship ready for Thanksgiving with family?”

Dodging Bullets

Visions of having your relationship picked apart like a Thanksgiving turkey can come to mind. “So, what do you do for a living? How long have you two been dating? How did you meet? Have you ever been married before?” Suddenly your family get-together becomes an exercise in passing the peas, dodging fact-finding bullets and frequently changing the subject. It can be stressful for you and your date. Your family members, on the other hand, are probably enjoying the fact that they’re not the focus of conversation for once.

Just Your Imagination?

Your thoughts may vary between wildly conflicting scenarios where your family interrogates your date or your date thinks your family is nuts and decides to call things off, or your guy/girl gets so nervous they drink themselves silly and embarrass you—it’s a crapshoot. Anything is possible, but probably most of what you fear is just your imagination, right?

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What to Consider

If you’re wondering if your relationship is ready for Thanksgiving with family, there are just a few things you need to ask yourself:

1. Is this relationship too new? If you’ve just started dating, you’re definitely not ready for family functions of any kind, let alone Thanksgiving with the family.

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2. Is this relationship nearing the serious stage? If you’ve been together for a while and it’s looking serious, but you have avoided bringing them home to meet the family, now may be the time. If you don’t bring your significant other home soon, your family may think you’ve been making the whole relationship up.

3. If your significant other doesn’t come with you, will they spend the day alone? The thought of your date being far from home and all alone on Thanksgiving is sad. Sometimes bringing your latest relationship to Thanksgiving dinner is a no-brainer—ready or not.

If you decide to introduce your significant other to the family, just remember that it’s only one day—one very long day—but still just one day. And here are a few more things to remember that will make this meeting easier on you both:

1. It’s a holiday and Thanksgiving with the family rarely goes off without some sort of drama or incident—see the humor in it.

2. Be proud and confident when introducing your mate. Family can sometimes act like a pack (of wild dogs) when they get together, and if they sense a bit of tension or uneasiness between you, they’ll pounce on it. Present a unified front that doesn’t leave room for scrutiny.

3. Have your date bring dessert, wine, flowers or something nice for the hostess. Gifts and thoughtful gestures always get you off to a good start.

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4. Avoid talk about politics or religion. That’s a given in any social situation.

5. If anyone brings up anything embarrassing about your past, just grin and bear it politely. We all have a past.

Family get-togethers can be weird, stressful, and even laughable and you probably vow at the end of every holiday that you’ll never do it again. But if you’ve decided that your relationship is ready for Thanksgiving with family, at least you won’t face it alone. Plus, now you’ll have a witness to back up all of those unbelievable stories you’ve shared about holidays passed.

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