Prep and Tips on Bringing Your Date or Girlfriend to Thanksgiving Dinner

Moving in together or leaving a toothbrush and a change of clothes at your girlfriend’s place may have seemed like the biggest leap in your relationship but it pales in comparison to that first major holiday. 

Are you sweating already thinking of the innapropriate jokes that your Uncle Mark will tell while the mashed potatoes are passed? And let’s not forget that your mother might bring up marriage and grandchildren again. 

RELAX…..because we have compiled some survival tips to bringing a date or your girlfriend to the first Thanksgiving feast. 

Prep time.  Before you hop a flight, or jump in the car have some time scheduled over a meal before you arrive. It could be a casual lunch of brunch but just make sure it happens before you find your place at the table. This not only allows downtime before she mets your family but some bonding time as well. 

Introduce your family before she meets them.  Without going to the dark side or getting too negative let her know that Uncle Mark may tell jokes about boobs or that your mom is not ready to let go of her son or a time table for grandkids. No matter who will drop the first offensive sentence, let her know that you’ve got her back and remind yourself that she most likely has a family very similar to this. 

Bring a gift.   Encourage her to bring flowers or a nice bottle of wine. This is where your knowledge of your dysfunctional family pays off. You don’t want her to bring something too personal so some guidance on your mom’s favorite flower is a nice touch. Or at least know which flowers she’s allergic to and hates. If you don’t know, ask your dad. 

Avoid the temptation to prep your family.  Maybe it’s crossed your mind to call your mom and ask her to tone down the questions about marriage and grandkids. DON’T. This could backfire in your face for many reasons but mostly for the ones you don’t want to think of such as “I’ll show him.” 

Check your drinking.  DO enjoy a few, a FEW glasses of wine or beer but keep your drinking in check. You don’t want to slip up while slurring. If you feel the need to party, slip off afterwards in celebration or defeat. 

Lastly, try to include your girlfriend or date. For instance, find commonalities between your sister’s yoga classes and the fact that your girlfriend never misses an opportunity to fall into child’s pose. Or maybe where she grew up was close to where Aunt Gene lived for 10 years. 

Good luck and Happy Thanksgiving! 

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