There comes a time in most romantic relationships when your lover will demand that you meet her parents. In most cases, this is not a request. It’s a threat. You have settled into a stage in your relationship where you are expected to share everything, including the misery of familial relationships. So, one sunny Sunday morning, your girlfriend barks at you: “Get dressed. We’re going to my parents’ house for dinner.” What do you do? Let’s take a look at your options.
Your first option is to run, run, run! Find another girlfriend whose parents died under tragically romantic circumstances, and left her a large estate and several polo ponies. But, let’s face it, for most of us, escape is not an option. So, let’s figure out a game plan.
• Wear something freshly laundered and untattered. And no T-shirts with outrageous political/feminist slogans. It makes me kind of sad that I have to spell this out for you people. But it has been my experience that lesbians tend to have no common sense when it comes to fashion.
• Bring a hostess gift. A box of nice candy. Or, preferably, an expensive bottle of booze, because you all will need a good, stiff drink to get through the evening.
• When first introduced, display your best submissive behavior. I suggest you visit a dog park before the meeting to see how this works. Smart dogs freshly released into a dog park will roll on their backs and expose their soft underbelly to show that they are not a threat. They do not get upset if a more dominant dog pees on them. When it comes to entering the home of your lover’s parents, you will get peed on. Accept it with grace and good cheer.
• Eat whatever is put in front of you. I don’t care how unappetizing the food is—eat it. If you’re a vegetarian, pretend that the roast is a giant lump of tofu, and eat it. You will have plenty of time to impose your pain-in-the-ass dietary demands on your lover’s family. But for now, be a good sport, and ask for seconds.
• Don’t flirt with the mother. If you had a few predinner cocktails, you might be feeling a bit frisky, and so might your lover’s mother. The drinks may have warmed you to the point where you both think it’s a good idea for some good-natured flirting. This is a mistake! The following morning, she will tell her daughter in true Victorian outrage that you tried to seduce her, and all hell will break loose.
• Don’t offer to fix any of her father’s vehicles or electric appliances. Once her father gets over the initial shock that his little girl is shtupping some broad with a crew cut, he’ll come to appreciate your understanding of contact sports and carburetors. But for now, let him be the man.
• No public displays of affection. Before you start writing me an angry letter about how it’s your God-given right to stick your tongue down your lover’s throat anywhere you please, listen to reason. Gay or straight, pawing your lover in front of parents is simply tasteless and disturbing. After all, how would you feel if your lover’s Dad slipped his hand up his wife’s skirt during dinner. I suspect it would make you retch.
• Don’t expect them to like you. No matter how well-behaved and charming you are, her parents aren’t going to like you immediately. So, don’t get too upset if they don’t invite you to Christmas dinner. Just be happy if they don’t write their daughter out of the will.
Hey, I wrote a book. You can buy Dateland on Amazon.