The holiday season can be difficult to navigate if you are in a relatively new relationship or if you have recently met someone. Last week, we addressed “define the relationship” conversations. This week, let’s talk about that invite to travel home for the holidays.
What do I do if he/she invites me home to meet the family?
Many people visit relatives or go home for at least one of the major holidays. If you’re single, you may feel the pressure and expectation from your parents or family to have a significant other and invite them with you to family holiday events. Nothing is worse each year than to have aunts, uncles, cousins, or parents asking if you are dating anyone or when you are going to get serious about someone.
However, if you just started dating someone, now is not the time to invite him or her to your family parties for the holidays. It?s too much pressure and can make you appear too serious too soon. It can cause the relationship to fail in the long run and feel like you are rushing things. Instead, plan on going alone this holiday season. Take some time to think through clever responses to head off the questioning you may receive from family members. (“Why aren’t you dating anyone?” “I’m still holding out for [insert name of good-looking celebrity here].”)
On the other hand, if you have been dating for a while and if the time is right in your relationship, this can be an excellent time to introduce your new beau to your family. If you have been dating for a few months or more and you’re both comfortable with the idea, it is acceptable to invite him or her to a family function. If he or she invites you home for the holidays make sure you discuss what to expect. Communicate as much as possible about this potentially big step.
Stacey Wald, LAPC, RD