Thanksgiving can be a tricky time for new couples. As Americans are finalizing their plans for the big day, those who’ve recently partnered up are probably wondering if the time is right to invite their boyfriend or girlfriend to come home with them for the holidays.
“It’s really a big step on so many levels,” says dating coach Tracey Steinberg. “Especially if you have to travel somewhere on a plane.”
Steinberg, author of “Flirt for Fun and Meet the One,” shared some tips for couples who are currently figuring out what to do for what is probably the most family-oriented holiday.
Make sure the timing is right: Before you rush to invite your boyfriend or girlfriend home, Steinberg says it’s important to ask yourself a couple of questions. “Is this someone that you are serious about?” she asks. “Have you met their friends? And are you regularly in contact, meaning — is it an assumed thing that you’ll spend every Saturday night together?” If you’re not sure where you are in the relationship, it’s probably better to wait another year. “You need to communicate. You need to figure out where you are with each other.”
Talk about expectations: Worried that your mom will start dropping hints about grandchildren or engagements at the dinner table? The best way to avoid that is to talk to your parents beforehand. “Hopefully, you have a good relationship with your family,” says Steinberg. “You can say, ‘This is someone that I care about.’ You can set up some guidelines.”
Prepare your partner for your visit: “I’m a big believer that you can set some things up for success,” says Steinberg. Talking with your partner about what Thanksgiving is usually like with your family helps a lot. “Give as much information as possible. What you should wear, what are great topics for conversations, even what compliments you can give.”
Rememberto have fun: “Spending these holidays together is a sign that you are serious,” says Steinberg. “If you are in a good relationship and you are enjoying it, it can be really exciting.”
Follow Lakshmi Gandhi on Twitter @LakshmiGandhi.