Meeting the parents of your partner is always a stressful experience. You want to make a great first impression but there are a lot of variables that you don’t know about.
Aside from actually finding a great partner (check out or Top Interracial Dating Sites list if you are still looking) making a good impression on the parents is the most stressful experience. Meeting the parents when in an interracial relationship adds another major layer of complexity to the situation!
Every time I met a girlfriends parents that were of another race I imagined all sorts of potential objections in my head.
Did they approve of her dating someone like me? Would I accidentally break some unknown custom and offend her entire family? Did I need to bring some kind of gift?
It’s a lot to think about. Despite the constant reassurances from my partner was always at least a little nervous.
Over time I developed a quick checklist to run through that helped me relax and ensured a smooth first meeting.
Meeting The Parents For Interracial Couples
Step #1: Take A Deep Breath
The parents you are meeting raised the man or woman you have fallen for. How bad can they be if they can produce them?
On the flip side, you are someone that part of the family already loves. If you can make your partner fall for you then the odds are that the rest of the family will like you as well.
Being calm and relaxed while meeting the parents will give you your best chance of success. It is going to happen so don’t stress out about it!
Step #2: Talk It Over With Your Partner
Long before you actually meet the parents you need to have an in-depth conversation with your partner. The last thing you want is to go into the meeting without any understanding of what you are getting yourself into.
What does their dad do for a living? How strong is their parents relationship? Are there any “hot button” issues that will cause problems talking about?
You want to be as prepared as possible going in. The more prepared you are the more relaxed you will be. The more relaxed you are the more likely that meeting the parents will go well.
You need to know what your partner has told her parents as well as what their parents have said about you. If they are in favor of the relationship that’s great. If they have doubts or objections you need to know that and be prepared for them.
If your partner isn’t willing to discuss this ahead of time you might have bigger problems then meeting the parents.
Step #3: Be Understanding
You are entering a new family that may have very different traditions and beliefs then you. There are bound to be misunderstanding or miscommunications.
Don’t take anything personally!
It will take some time for their parents to get to know you and for you to understand them. Their family may accidentally or intentionally offend or antagonize you.
Don’t fall into that trap!
There are a lot of racial, gender, cultural, and religious biases that might be in play and you likely won’t be able to overcome them all on your first meeting. Meeting the parents for the first time is all about feeling them out.
Once you make it through the first meeting you can begin breaking down these biases and objections over time. It may be frustrating but you should spend your time reassuring their parents as patiently as you are able that their concerns are not warranted.
Step #4: Don’t Focus Only On The Parents
It is very easy to focusing all of your attention on the parents during your first meeting. They are the ones whom you most wish to impress.
This is a mistake!
You need to get the whole family on your side. Often times it is the extended family that convince the parents to get over any objections they might have.
Brothers and sisters of your partner are especially useful for this. If you can get your partners siblings on your side they are often the best resources you will have to overcome parental biases.
It is often in the siblings best interest to help you. If they ever wish to date someone outside their race in the future it will be much easier if you have already been accepted into the family. If you are rejected, it will be much harder for them to try themselves.
Family members who like you will be able to work on your partners parents well after you leave to make them more comfortable with your dating of their child.
Step #5: Be Patient
Objections you hear when meeting the parents are not going to disappear overnight. You will often be dealing with long-held beliefs that may go back for generations.
You may never be able to completely overcome these biases with everyone but you can definitely make progress over time. This can be a long term project but it is doable!
You have to realize that your partners parents have been dreaming about the man or woman their child would end up with since they were born. They are going to have high expectations and they are very invested in their child’s future.
The parents want what is best for their son or daughter and have an idea in their mind of what that might be. If you don’t fit that vision exactly it can take some time and effort to convince the parents that you are as good or better.
The Last Word
While there is certainly potential for drama while meeting the parents that is extremely rare. Almost always the worst thing that will happen is an awkward conversation or an unintentional offensive remark.
Meeting the parents is a big step in a relationship and you should take it seriously. However you don’t want to put so much pressure on yourself that when objections do arise you break down.
You are meeting the people who raised the man or woman that you have fallen in love with. If they are even half as great as your partner you are in for an uneventful experience at worst.
Give their family the benefit of the doubt and keep an open mind. Bringing flowers for your partners mother never hurt either!
If you are still looking for that special someone don’t forget to check out our Top Interracial Dating Sites for the best places to look online.