It's Christmas Eve! You are getting ready to go visit family, or are already there and you have brought.....your new love. Maybe your family is amazing and you are both welcomed in with open arms or maybe they are skeptical and you are still feeling your way through it. Whichever the case, here are some tips on how to get through those sticky moments when your family mixes and your new partner does not.
1. Make sure your family knows all the good things about them.
Don't go into details of what is wrong, difficult, strange, or private about your relationship. Holidays are not a good time to spill the guts on any negative parts of your union. Instead focus on all the good parts, what you love about them and how much you want support right now in these first stages of your love. You can always talk about issues with a trusted family member later, but for Christmas you will want all positive energy vibes while they are still getting to know them.
2. Keep it light and comfortable.
Keeping things light means try to stay away from heavy topics they might not agree on right away like politics, religion, child rearing, and other heavy topics that may have many opinions flying. When you first meet someone in public you wouldn't dive into those topics because there is common respect and you are just breaking the ice. This is the case when your new love is just meeting your family and does not have the same history or bond needed yet to feel comfortable with those things.
3. Be supportive and protective right now.
If your family starts digging in and asking too many embarrassing questions, pry about your lover's past, starts picking on them, becomes overly critical or starts any negative conversations then you need to step in and be the mediator. Bring logic, calm understanding and stop the conversation in a mild but protective way. Use touch to let your partner know you are there to support them, like a hand to the lower back or an arm around them, and take them from the situation into a positive one. They were invited as a guest and should be treated with that care and respect.
Holidays can be a marvelous time to introduce your new relationships and have a great bonding moment, but family can be well...family, and sometimes the boundaries are crossed and lines are too grey, so make sure you are the one who acts as the pilot on this little adventure and steer your way into a happy holiday vacation!