Bringing a New Partner Home for the Holidays
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Bringing a New Partner Home for the Holidays

With the holidays quickly approaching, many women are looking for a new partner to bring home to Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. While online dating can certainly be a great way to accomplish this, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes time to introduce her to your family. Here are four tips for bringing a new partner home for the holidays.

Prepare Both Sides

There is nothing quite as alarming to a family during the holidays than an unexpected guest showing up. Be sure to alert all applicable family members, including the host or hostess, of your intentions to bring your partner home. If your relationship is fairly new, consider giving them a few details about her before both of you arrive. In addition, it is important to prepare your partner for your family. Add small details that could be easy conversation starters. (Such as Aunt Ida's new quilt shop business and the fact the Cousin Joe is studying physics at Stanford.) If your family is extremely quirky -- and isn't everyone's! -- be sure to include those details, as well.

Relinquish All Expectations of Others' Actions

When it comes to others' reactions, we often decide ahead of time how we think they will act. When bringing a new partner home for the holidays, it is vital to relinquish all expectations you might have of how the event will play out. This includes both sides. While you have known your mother long enough to pretty much determine whether or not she will like your new mate, you most likely do not know how this new woman will react to your family. Give yourself the gift of having an open mind when it comes to the expectations of others' reactions can save you heartache and stress later.

Include Them in Your Family Traditions

It is really easy for your new partner to feel like an outcast when coming home to meet your family for the holidays. Keep this from happening by including them in your family's cherished traditions. For example, some families bake cookies and decorate the tree on Christmas Eve. Let your partner take part in making these memories. If the relationship works out, it will be something that the entire family will remember about the first time they met this new woman in their lives. (And if it doesn't work out, it can always serve as a humorous anecdote for later!)

Ask About Their Family Traditions

We can all agree that traditions are the cornerstone of the holiday season. When bringing a new partner home for the holidays, consider asking them about traditions that their family usually celebrates. Discuss this with your family (or the host/hostess) and see if there is a way to add one or two of them to your celebration. This will make your guest feel honored and help create an important bond between you and your new mate.

What if you are the guest? Remember that each family celebrates the holidays differently. Have an open mind, have fun, and remember what the season is all about -- getting together with others and enjoying a break from the business of everyday life!