The Modern Lady's Guide To Meeting His Parents
1. Dress code.
This is not a time to test out the latest fashion styles from the runway. Refrain from wearing your trendiest outfit, or anything borderline sexy. Play it safe. Depending on the occasion, a lovely feminine dress would be perfect for a dinner out, or a blouse and pants are appropriate for a meal at their house. If you're still clueless, ask your honey what his mother is planning on wearing and assess from there.
2. MANNERS, ladies.
Now is the time to say your please and thank yous, as well as all of the other obvious ones. Ask yourself, "What would Kate Middleton do?". And if you don't know the answer to that question, read up on her as homework!
3. The menu.
If you have special dietary restrictions, excuse yourself to the bathroom and discuss with the waiter. There is no need to have a full on discussion about it at the dinner table. If you are eating dinner at his house, simply don't eat the options that don't fit in with your lifestyle. And if you do not suffer from a serious food allergy, it may be the one night you should just skip the Paleo diet.
4. Watch the wine, darling.
This may be the most important rule, and the hardest to do because your nerves are at an all-time high. But believe ME, stick to one or two glasses of wine, and pace yourself with a glass of water in between. My personal advice: order a white wine spritzer, which is half seltzer and half white wine. It's delicious, light, and will not make you the laughing stock of the dinner table.
5. Bring the hostess a gift.
If it is a formal dinner bring a bottle of wine (unless his parents do not drink), a lovely cheese spread, darling little floral arrangement, or something sweet! No matter how big or small the gift is, it's always an elegant gesture and much appreciated.
6. Speak like a lady.
If you normally curse a lot, you simply can NOT do this when you meet his parents. One time I brought a new boyfriend around my dad and the guy swore like a sailor within five minutes of meeting him. Needless to say, Dad was completely turned off.
7. Save the PDA for alone time.
Just refrain right now. PLEASE.
8. Offer to help.
Make yourself useful if you are eating at his house. Offer to clean up the dishes, and help set the table.
9. Hello, Mr. and Mrs. Kennedy!
Address his parents formally (with Mr. & Mrs.), unless they ask you to call them by their first names.
10. Learn who's who.
If you are meeting a big family (or extended family), it might be helpful to have your significant other create a family facebook (yes, just like the one in The Devil Wears Prada) for you. I know that my own family is HUGE, and it's hard to keep track of everyone and their children; so this could be mighty useful. Ask for photos and bios on all of the family members, so you can find common ground when conversing with them, and confidently know everyone's names.
11. Send a thank you note!
An email or a handwritten note is a lovely gesture to show your appreciation to his family. And will definitely win you brownie points!
This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.