Meeting Jewish Parents: Thing to Know and Consider

So, it’s time to get acquainted with the girl’s parents. At such a moment, young people often experience nervousness, excitement, and fear at the same time. It is important to please parents, but at the same time remain yourself. For the acquaintance to be successful, you should make a good first impression, participate in a conversation and prepare in advance. Such a perspective is scary, but you are already one step ahead because you have time to prepare. Obviously, the girl is important to you and you want to please her parents, so do not worry! Everything will go well.

Do not be late.

So you show that you respect the girl’s parents and value their time. It’s better not to leave everything at the last moment, so as not to rush. Set a reminder for the time you need to exit. If you are going by car, then check out in advance in case of traffic jams. If you meet at home with your parents, then come exactly at the agreed time. Do not come too soon, as the hosts can still prepare for the meeting. If you are meeting in a restaurant, it is best to come a few minutes earlier to meet the girl’s parents.

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Greet parents with handshakes or hugs.

Ask the girl how her parents usually greet people. Much depends on the place of birth and traditions. People greet each other with bowing, shaking hands, hugs and even a kiss on the cheek. If the girl’s father prefers to shake hands, then give him a hand at a meeting. Shake your hand tightly, but not too hard. If in doubt, give parent initiative. They will almost certainly shake your hand or hug you.

Offer to help with dinner or remove dishes from the table if you are at their place.

For example, suggest chopping vegetables or lay the appliances on a table. After dinner, get up to help clean everything from the table and wash the dishes, even if you were not asked to. The girl’s parents will love your willingness to help, even if they don’t accept your offer.

Compliment the girl’s parents.

Everyone loves to hear nice things about themselves, and compliments will demonstrate your courtesy. If you are going to visit, coming up with praise will be very simple. Give a compliment to the home, garden (if available), interior and more. You can also praise her parents ’clothing style, food (if they cooked it), or the place where they offered dinner. For example, you could say: “I like your home. These paintings are simply amazing.” Or: “The dishes are simply delicious. It’s great that you offered dinner here.”

If possible, do not drink alcohol.

Not a drop. Otherwise, you can go over without even realizing it. Even if you are nervous, now is not the time to drink! You need to be sober and collected in order to make a good impression. If you drink too much, you can say something that you didn’t mean, or you will seem like you are an alcoholic.

Be affectionate with the girl, but stay within the bounds of decency.

Correct her hair, from time to time touch her and hold the door. Parents of the girl should see that you value and respect their daughter. Try not to kiss the girl on the lips with her parents nearby, but do not be afraid to hug her or hold her hand.

Maintain proper posture and eye contact.

Correct posture shows your confidence, so sit straight and don’t slouch. During the conversation, look into the eyes of the girl’s parents, but periodically look away. If you are worried, imperceptibly take a few deep breaths. Remember the main thing – everything will be fine.

Turn off the phone.

It is important to focus fully on the meeting. Disconnect your phone or at least do not hold it in your hands. Pay all your attention to the parents and the girl so that they know how important they are to you. If you can be called from work, then warn about this in advance. Say: “I apologize in advance if I need to answer the call. They can call me from work at any moment.”

Behave in a proper way.

If you meet at dinner at home or in a restaurant, then do not forget about good manners. Do not champ or eat too fast. Do not put more on your plate than you can eat. Try everything that you are offered if you have no health restrictions. Refusal of food can be perceived as a sign of disrespect. If you have dinner at home, then offer to help with the dishes. Put your plate in the sink. If you spilled something or left crumbs, then use a napkin. If you have a meeting in a restaurant, and you do not have problems with finances, then pay dinner.

Be a polite guest.

Away, it is important to remember good manners. Praise the apartment or house of the girl’s parents. Ask where you should take off your shoes and leave your shoes.

Find common topics for a conversation.

The conversation should not be strained. Find common topics for a natural conversation. For example, you read a book that your mum’s mom mentioned, or you noticed the logo of your favorite team on a girl’s father’s t-shirt. Common interests are not indifferent to people.

Ask open-ended questions.

Monosyllabic answers, like replicas of two words, will not help in any way to maintain a conversation. Ask questions that make you think. Show a genuine desire to get to know the girl’s parents better. For example, instead of asking where they studied, say the following: “Sarah said you graduated from Harvard. How did you remember your years of study?”

Ask them to tell funny stories.

This is a great way to keep up with your sweetheart’s parents. Ask them to show you children’s pictures or tell funny stories. Surely in the end, everyone will not be able to restrain a smile and laugh, which will reduce stress. Say: “Sarah once told me about your trip to the sea when a crab pinched her. And what other unusual stories happened to her?”

Listen and answer what you are told.

Of course, you will be a little nervous in the presence of her parents, why you will try to think through your words in advance. However, it is much more important to be involved in the conversation, so you need to carefully listen to what other people say. Then you can ask questions related to this topic. For example, if her father talks about his work, you can say: “It sounds very interesting. What else do you do at work?”

Find out the names of your parents in advance.

Before the meeting, ask the girl what her parents’ name is. Try not only to remember the names but also to clarify whether the parents were married or divorced.

Ask the girl for basic information.

What do they do for a living? Where were they born and raised? What are they not ready to put up with? For example, if it turns out that the girl’s mother is a great cook, then don’t eat before the meeting so you will not end up leaving anything uneaten.

Dress well and comb your hair.

When you first meet you should look perfect. Take a shower again and wash your hair. Choose casual business clothes if you don’t need to go to a formal event. The better you look, the more confident you will be. The everyday business style allows you to combine jeans or regular trousers with a shirt and even a jacket. Shoes should be chosen with the toe closed.

Buy a present.

This is not necessary, but a gift will always be a pleasant surprise. If parents love wine, then buy a bottle of good wine. You can also give the girl’s mother flowers.

Get ready to receive a lot of questions.

If the girl has a close relationship with her parents, then they will ask you a lot of questions. Be fully equipped. For example, they may ask how serious you are or how you make a living. Do not worry if the question seems difficult to you. Speak sincerely and be yourself. Everything will be fine! You can say something like this: “I really like your daughter. She is a wonderful person and well-mannered. I want her to be happy”.

Stay away from sensitive topics.

Regardless of how much you want to vote for a particular candidate, raising this question at your first meeting with your girlfriend’s parents is not a good idea. This can cause frustration and tension, especially if you do not know what other people at the table think about it. In addition, topics such as religion, abortion, and other contentious political issues are best avoided. You can politely answer if someone asks a question about this, but try to avoid such topics whenever possible. For example, if her mom asks you who you voted for in the recent election, you might say: “I don’t want to vote, but I appreciate your support. What candidate did you support?”

Open up and be yourself.

Do not try to say what you think her parents want to hear. Better to just be energetic, fun, or real. They will see if you are pretending, but they just want to get to know you better. In the end, you date their daughter, and it is likely that one day you will become one family. Even if you are shy by nature, try to be more open than usual. Try to be confident! Smile when you speak, and also look in the eyes of other people.