Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Weekend Open Thread

This post yesterday got me thinking about the whole “meet-the-parents” thing we all go through sooner or later if we manage to get serious enough with someone (or, if, you know, their parents happen to come to town and invite us to join them for dinner). I’ve “met the parents” four times, that I can remember. Or, that is, I’ve met the parents of four guys I’ve dated. I suppose I was a little nervous each time, but the most nerve-wracking experience was when I met one boyfriend’s mother for the first time on a one-week vacation we all went on together to the south of France. (Tip: if you can, try to avoid meeting parents on vacation when you’re basically stuck together for an extended period of time. Go for a short dinner instead.) We met up at the airport in Paris and not only was she intimidatingly chic and sophisticated, she was from a different culture and spent much of the week speaking another language with her son, my boyfriend, which really made me feel out-of-place. Also, she commented more than once on the quality of my nose job (I have not had a nose job).

Soo… I’m curious:

1. How often have you either met a significant other’s parents or introduced one to yours?

2. Has it ever gone less than perfectly?

3. How do you decide when it’s the right time to make the introductions?

4. And, if you don’t want to talk about meeting the parents, how about books? I’m leaving for a two-week vacation and need some good reading material. What have you read recently β€” or what are some old faves β€” that you’d recommend for vacation reading?

85 comments… add one
  • Addie Pray April 15, 2011, 5:32 pm

    I just got back from vacation. 7 days off gave me enough time to read The Executioner’s Song – I highly recommend it. Under the Banner of Heave is another favorite.

    P.S. I love this movie. And I think it’s funny how no one seems bothered by their age difference.

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    • Addie Pray April 16, 2011, 1:43 am

      * Heaven. Meant to say, Under the Banner of Heaven.

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    • RoyalEagle0408 April 16, 2011, 3:56 pm

      Great book!

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  • cmarie April 15, 2011, 5:37 pm

    I’ve never officially met the parents. I’ve only had one serious relationship and to say that they didn’t approve would be putting it nicely. They never met me yet hated me and when she first told them we were dating they wanted to send her to see a psychiatrist to “fix” her. She met my mother once, I’ve already told that story.

    I would recommend anything by Mary Stewart. Except her Aurthurian tales. She writes amazing gothic mysteries/romance. My favorite is “Nine Coaches Waiting”. My new vacay obsession is actually Soduku. Last time I had a plane ride I bought a book and the time just flew by.

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  • Feather April 15, 2011, 5:51 pm

    I am meeting the parents in from out of town for the first time next weekend. We have been together almost a year, and they will be staying with my boyf for 10 days. I have had luck with any previous “relationship parents” loving me, so I hope this will be the same.

    As for books, not sure what style you like, but we reading The Other Boleyn girl in our book club and it is fantastic.

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    • Painted_lady April 15, 2011, 7:47 pm

      If you like Philippa Gregory’s writing style, check out “The Constant Princess” next. My mom and I read both, and we agree that it’s actually better. Catherine of Aragon makes for a fascinating character.

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      • SpaceySteph April 15, 2011, 8:26 pm

        I basically read all her Tudor books and loved them. I think Anne is history’s favorite character, so they made The Other Boleyn Girl a movie, but I actually found most of the other books in the series to be better. The Queens Fool was one of my favorites.
        Whats interesting is that many of the books feature the same characters, but their personalities are written completely differently depending on who is telling the story. In The Other Boleyn Girl, Jane is basically a conniving bitch; but when its her turn to tell the story in The Boleyn Inheritance, you start to like her. It strikes me as really realistic… different people have different opinions of how things went down, and its a tribute to the writer that she can spin the story multiple ways based on who’s voice she is using.

      • Painted_lady April 16, 2011, 2:44 am

        I love that about her books – they’re so interconnected. I love how Henry is portrayed in Constant Princess compared to Other Boleyn Girl – this sort of monster in the making as opposed to the rock star Mary sees. I’ve only read three (the two I mentioned above and The Virgin’s Lover (I’m sort of obsessed with Elizabeth I). Now I’m going to have to pick up some more. Thanks SpaceySteph!

      • Amy April 16, 2011, 12:47 pm

        The White Queen is about the Cousin’s War – the royal family before the tudors… it was one of my favorite Philippa Gregory books – it’s the first of trilogy about this time frame.

  • Kristina April 15, 2011, 6:08 pm

    I know I expressed my own personal dislike for meeting parents so soon in a relationship, but in high school it obviously happened all the time and rather soon. It was never all that stressful since I was often at their homes a lot anyways. When I had my first boyfriend that lived in his own apartment, I was scared to meet his parents. It went over quite well, and over the course of the relationship, I was always excited to go over and have dinner with his parents or just hang out with them. I haven’t met a boyfriend’s parents since that experience, and I know I would be timid again of doing so since anyone I date now is in college and not living at home, so it’s a much bigger deal to me now.

    I’ve never introduced a boyfriend to my parents, and I know they aren’t going to be meeting anyone unless I have been dating a person for at least a year. It also helps they live over 1000 miles from me.

    One of my favorite books in the past few years has been The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls. I read it a couple of years ago while I was at the beach in the summer.

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    • no April 15, 2011, 7:24 pm

      Wow great comment!

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    • RoyalEagle0408 April 16, 2011, 3:57 pm

      Did you like it? I heard her speak a few years ago and didn’t get a very “uplifting” vibe about the book and it made me not want to read it. I don’t like sad books.

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      • Kristina April 16, 2011, 8:21 pm

        Yes, I really loved The Glass Castle! While it’s not exactly an uplifting book, I think the author does a great job of spinning a sad and deprived life into a great and positive ending.

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        Wendy April 16, 2011, 9:45 pm

        I loved this book also. I read it in two days β€” on my honeymoon (so that should say something about how much I enjoyed it).

      • TheGirl April 18, 2011, 8:51 am

        It’s not really a sad book. Yes, they struggle, but there’s a constant underlying optimism to it that keeps it from being a total downer. You should check it out!

    • Fergn8r April 18, 2011, 3:09 pm

      If you liked The Glass Castle you should read Walls’ new book Half Broke Horses. It’s kind of a prequel to the Glass Castle and the main character is her grandmother (the one with all the land in Texas). So interesting, she was quite the adventurous lady and it’s got a bit lighter tone than Glass Castle (which I also loved).

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      • Kristina April 18, 2011, 5:32 pm

        Oh thanks, I should check that other book out.

  • BeccaAnne April 15, 2011, 6:28 pm

    The bf and I had been dating about 6 months when we decided to go visit/meet his parents. He was going to stay longer than I was and go to an orientation for his summer internship at a company that his mother also works at. We’re on the plane haven’t even taken off yet, I haven’t been in a plane for years so I’m a little nervous of flying and meeting the parents. Bf and I start talking about his internship/orientation and he mentions the name of the company. Lady in front of us turns around and asks what we’re talking about she works there blah blah. Bf mentions that his mom works there. Lady in front asks who she is, bf tells her. And then, I kid you not, the woman sits up straighter and says, “You’re mother is a brilliant scientist.”

    Needless to say I about crapped my pants; as if I wasn’t nervous enough some random woman on the plane knew her and idolized her.

    Everything turned out ok though. I love his parents. His mom got sooo embarrassed when we told her what happened, but now it’s a funny family joke that I’m in on! Woohoo

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  • LennyBee April 15, 2011, 6:41 pm

    1. I’ve only done the introductions and getting introduced once – with my current boyfriend (my first serious relationship). We did it VERY early, he met my parents within about 6 weeks of dating, and I met his a couple weeks later. I probably wouldn’t have chosen to meet them that early, but both of our parents live in different countries and visit at most once a year, so we were like “well, we can do it now and acknowledge that we like each other, but it’s early-days, OR, we can wait till we’ve been seriously dating for year and a half”. I was optimistic about our future, and we both have really close relationships with our parents, so we didn’t want to make them wait. It turned out great, and my only regret was that, at the time, I didn’t speak his native language, so I couldn’t speak to his mother at all.

    4. Recently, I’ve been reading books by Valerie Frankel (I borrow ebooks from the library, and I like to go on author-binges, where I borrow everything from one author and then move on to another author). If you like fluffy girl books about relationship problems, her books make an entertaining read.

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  • MissDre April 15, 2011, 6:41 pm

    I am now in my third relationship. I have only met his mother once, and it was the first time I have ever met the parents.

    My first boyfriend didn’t want his parents to know about me at all. He kept me a secret from them (which is retarded since he was 25). Funny enough, I actually met his mother about a year AFTER we broke up, because I remained friends with his sister.

    My second boyfriend’s mother still lived in Africa so I never met her. I did meet his uncle and cousin though, when we took a trip to NYC.

    My current boyfriend met my mom after about 4 months and it was totally unplanned. I met his mom after about 8 months and it has only been the one time so far. I was a little nervous, but he talks about her all the time so I felt like I already knew her. She was pretty cool, I just wish I could get to know her better.

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  • jottino April 15, 2011, 6:48 pm

    I’ve had three boyfriends (including my current one), and I’ve had to meet the parents of all three.

    The first one didn’t go that well, but mostly on my end. She came to visit campus (we lived in the same dorm), and I was so intimidated that I hid until I knew she left. Yes, I’m a wimp. I met her a few weeks later, and I couldn’t have felt more silly. She was so kind and friendly!

    I met the second set of parents for my (then) boyfriend when they drove down for his birthday. I was also intimidated, but I didn’t hide this time. They were also very nice … though I later found out that they thought badly about me because I was in the process of changing my major. Boo.

    The third time (and hopefully the last time) I met parents was in Las Vegas, for my boyfriend’s brother’s wedding (they live on the west coast). DEFINITELY NOT RECOMMENDED! I met his mother for the first time at the rehearsal dinner. I was incredibly nervous. And then … nightmare! She barely said a word to me! Just a quick “Huh? Oh. Nice to meet you,” before she walked away. I panicked & thought she hated me. I later found out that she was so stressed and distracted. The next morning, she invited my boyfriend & I to her hotel room & she was so happy and friendly! She loves me now πŸ™‚

    My boyfriend met my parents for the first time at his work hahah. At the time, we had been dating around 3 months. My parents and I were in the area, so I said “Stop by, just for a few minutes. Only if you want to. It’ll break the ice!” He was petrified, but I think meeting on “neutral ground” – with a definite escape plan – helped. I think he and my parents get along wonderfully. They seem to like each other πŸ™‚

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  • Hana April 15, 2011, 6:20 pm

    I’ve only met one SO’s parents and its my current boyfriends. And since I moved up here they have become my second family. I really enjoy spending time with them, although I do sometimes get annoyed with how much time we spend with them. If time at their house is beating how much time we spend alone together I get a little cranky lol.
    My SO has a really close family so we spend a few nights a week with them.
    The first time I met them I was meeting my bf at Fry’s b/c he and his family were coming in form out of town. My bf and his father both always wear matching Dodger hats and his mom is a red head so when I couldn’t find my bf I walked up to the first couple I saw that matched his parents description and introduced myself. Luckily it was the right couple!

    I first met them about a month or two after we began dating. It wasn’t a big deal, we were in a LDR and he and his family were coming in to go to a baseball game and he wanted to see me. It was either meet the parents and see each other or not see each other for two weeks, so the decision was pretty much made for us.

    As for books, I recently read Heaven is for real. I am not particularly religious and am not recommending it because it is about religion. It is a good book! I also just started Soul Surfer, which is another great book! My favorite author’s are Chris Moore (I’m originally from Hawaii) and Augusten Burroughs! So good!

    BTW, not trying to self promotoe but I am very excited to announce an article I wrote for sheknows.com Click my name and it will send you there!

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    • Rachel April 17, 2011, 4:31 am

      Yes! I love Christopher Moore! Lamb is one of the only books I can reread and still love. That, and Sunshine by Robin McKinley – way better vampire/human story than the twilight books πŸ™‚

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  • DaisyJorts April 15, 2011, 7:41 pm

    The first time I met my boyfriend’s parents, we weren’t actually bf/gf yet. It was when we had just first started dating, I was at his apartment and we were upstairs fooling around. We heard his front door open and someone say “hello?” He quickly got dressed and went downstairs, came back up and said “Um, it’s my parents” I, mortified, got dressed and came downstairs. They were very nice and could feel the awkwardness, but we made the best of it. They left soon after and my bf’s dad texted him saying “sorry about that, next time we will call before stopping by” GAH!

    As for the bf meeting my parents, he came over when my parents were throwing a party. I figured it would be better since it wouldn’t be one on one and drinking would ease the tension. Too bad I had a smidge too much to drink and ended up passing out around 9, while he had to fend for himself for the rest of the night. The next morning he told me (as I stumbled downstairs and apologized about a thousand times) that my dad had come up to him the night before and said, “You nervous?….you’re doing well. I’m on board day one, just don’t fuck it up.” Thankfully he can laugh off that experience and didn’t hold it against me for too long.

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    • DaisyJorts April 15, 2011, 7:50 pm

      And he is the first boyfriend I brought home to my parents and whose parents I have met, makes sense since he is my first boyfriend ever haha.

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  • SpaceySteph April 15, 2011, 8:02 pm

    With my ex, my first serious relationship, I had known his sister back in elementary school and met his parents briefly then… also his mom was a receptionist at the elementary school and in the same weight watchers group with my mom; his dad and my dad are both doctors at the same hospitals. So… meeting those parents was not the normal meet the parents. They kinda knew me, they definitely knew my family, it wen’t pretty well. I liked them fine as people but it drove me nuts that they were very overbearing, a fact which I did not hide from my boyfriend and which I’m sure contributed to the demise of our relationship.
    I don’t know though, I mean is it not ok to tell a 20 year old college boy that he should not have to ask his parents permission to fly to another city to visit his long distance girlfriend when he’s paying? He told me I was disrespectful, I told him that he needed to cut the cord… one of our many, many screaming matches. It was not a good relationship overall. I still wonder if I maybe shouldn’t have said that. What you you DW readers think?

    In my current relationship, my boyfriend met my parents when they came to visit me (in Houston, from Fort Lauderdale) after we’d been dating a couple months. But I explained to him that I loved my parents and that they really just love feeding people (in college they would always take out any stray friend for dinner, let alone the guy their daughter was dating) and that it wouldn’t be an interrogation. As a bonus we went to a fancy steak restaurant that we could maybe afford but wouldn’t want to spend the money on… its how my parents like to roll.
    Then I went with him a few months later to visit his family for Thanksgiving. I agree with Wendy that its probably far better not to meet them on a vacation when you can’t escape- his parents live in another state too, and we flew there and stayed at their house (separate rooms of course!) and I was basically trapped. Worse still, Thanksgiving is a major holiday for them… aunts, uncles, cousins, cousins kids, family friends… I met about 30 new people in the span of 24 hours. They were all super nice, interested in me but not in a scary interrogation way, and it turned out fine.. but I shudder to think how badly it could have gone if they hadn’t liked me.
    His mom was actually really great… they are a traditional Italian family and I don’t eat pork. She made meatless lasagna with sausage on the side one night, and put turkey sausage instead of pork sausage in the thanksgiving stuffing. I felt a little embarassed… that they should have just had their regular stuffing and I could have eaten one of a million other dishes, but she said it was fine, and was healthier too so she was happy to do it. I don’t know if thats true, but it was nice of her to lie to me if not.

    I think the right time is when it presents itself. I don’t have any hangups that you only introduce a man to your family if you’re definitely going to marry him. I like hanging with my boyfriend and I like seeing my family, so I would hate to HAVE to hide him from my parents when they visited or always be going home without him. The exception is that one time I was dating a guy I was really sure it wasn’t going anywhere and was trying to muster the courage to tell him that- we weren’t exclusive or very physical, but he had already tried to introduce me to his parents (who were local) and thankfully had an actual work conflict to duck out with. My parents came to town and I basically made excuses why I couldn’t introduce them… I didn’t want HIM to get the wrong idea. Meeting the parents definitely indicates you see some kind of future, but not that you should start picking out a china pattern.

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    • SpaceySteph April 15, 2011, 8:02 pm

      Holy long comment, Batman. Sorry!

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    • SpaceySteph April 15, 2011, 8:05 pm

      Also that should be SHE’s paying. Because when my ex visited, I always paid.

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    • Fairhaired Child April 18, 2011, 12:04 am

      “I don’t know though, I mean is it not ok to tell a 20 year old college boy that he should not have to ask his parents permission to fly to another city to visit his long distance girlfriend when he’s paying? He told me I was disrespectful, I told him that he needed to cut the cord…”

      I can kinda see it from both sides. He shouldn’t have to ASK but he may want to inform them. Like “oh hey.. I’m planning on visiting steph in a few weeks and I just wanted to let you guys know and make sure I dont choose a weekend you already had something planned on.” This way he is KINDA asking, but still asserting that he IS going to go – but is willing to compromise on when. And of course since you were paying you probably were exhasperated because its not like he was disappointing them by spending money they wanted him to save or that he didn’t have. So yeah, he shouldn’t have to ask for a signed permission slip to do something you were paying for.

      But, on one hand he probably wanted to respect his parents by having the courtesy to ask them, though at 20something he should have had the backbone to be able to still say “well I’ve already made up my mind to go, and dont need you to validate my choice, but I wanted to let you know for your sake more than mine”. Esp. if he was not living under their house at that time, but away at college.

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  • ReginaRey April 15, 2011, 8:03 pm

    I thought my boyfriend’s parents were going to HATE me…his dad being a Baptist Reverend and his mom naturally being very conservative. I was raised in a pretty conservative household as well, but I wasn’t virginal and I drank alcohol (shame of shames!), so I figured if they knew even THAT they’d smite me down. Turns out, they’re the most laid back and non-judgmental people. Sure, clearly we don’t talk about alcohol and sex, but they aren’t the Bible bashing eccentrics I expected at all…and they love me! Win-win!

    Books! Wendy, not sure what kind of books you prefer, but I’m a voracious reader of historical fiction and action/adventure thrillers. Anything by James Rollins is awesome – lots of twists and turns, history, art, travel, science, intrigue, edge-of-your-seat-ness. Think Dan Brown, just much more well-written. Timeline by Michael Crichton is another personal favorite along those same things. Gone with the Wind is great, if you haven’t read it. And if you want something especially tasteless and lowbrow, Chelsea Handler’s books are hysterical. Sorry, no deep, thought-provoking suggestions from me…I prefer books that transport me from the mundane πŸ™‚

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    • Painted_lady April 16, 2011, 2:49 am

      I LOVE Chelsea Handler’s books! I think it’s Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang where she fakes the dog’s death to fuck with her boyfriend – that had me laughing so hard I was crying. My roommate came home while inwas reading it; she thought I’d gone off the deep end.

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    • Caroline April 16, 2011, 11:38 pm

      I LOVE Timeline! I constantly reread it!

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    Nico April 15, 2011, 8:12 pm

    The first time I met my now ex’s parents was about a month after we started dating. I went out to dinner with him, his parents, and older sister. Funny enough, my mom was visiting me from out of town and the invitation was also extended to her (I havent even introduced my bf to her at that point!). I refused for her as it seemed wayyyy too early to be introducing parents to one another. When is the right time for that to happen anyway? I initially was going to decline, because it felt too soon and I didn’t want to ditch my mom, but she encouraged me to go. I ended up really liking his parents and ended up spending a few holidays with his family. They were very upset when we broke up. I wish I could have kept in contact with them, but the break up was pretty bad (and I initiated it) and it didn’t seem right to keep communicating with my ex’s family when I refused to him.

    I’ve een usually very reluctant to introduce boyfriends to my mom. She is pretty judgemental, conservative, and absolutely did not like the idea of me dating- even in college!! Though, she has since loosened up as I am now in my early 20s and am done with school. She has only met one (the previously mentioned) and it wasn’t until after 5 months of dating. It went very poorly. My ex was very shy and awkward when he first met her and kind of avoided directly speaking to her. That did not bode well for him as she immediately thought him as extremely rude and ill-mannered. They only met about 3-4 times over a two year period, and they never warmed up to one another. Ironically, I think they were too much alike and their two very strong personalities never clicked. To say the least, my mom was fairly pleased when we broke up.

    For me, the right time to meet parents is when you’re in a fairly serious, established relationship. The only way I would introduce any bf to my family is if I was certain that that person wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. =)

    Good book- Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley. A great historical/fantasy fiction about the Arthurian legends.

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    • honeybeenicki April 15, 2011, 9:48 pm

      I have wondered when it is appropriate to introduce the parents to each other also. My mom and MIL didn’t officially meet until my rehearsal dinner (my husband and I had been together for 3+ years by then) but that was mostly due to disinterest on my MIL’s part (in 6 years she has come to see us in our various homes we have occupied 2 times total and we only live 30 minutes away).

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    sobriquet April 15, 2011, 8:21 pm

    1. How often have you either met a significant other’s parents?
    Formally, I have only met the parents twice in my life (which is fine with me… I hate meeting the parents). By formally, I mean I made a special visit to meet them and it was a Big Thing. Not the informal “well we’re in town so we might as well meet.” Also, not counting high school boyfriends or boyfriends who lived with their parents.

    2. Has it ever gone less than perfectly?
    The first time I met my ex-boyfriend’s parents (5 years ago), we traveled to his hometown to spend the weekend with them during the summer. He talked it up as if his mom was so excited to finally meet me after 4 months of dating. Well, she had an odd way of showing it because throughout the weekend, his parents asked me ZERO questions and basically ignored me. It was so awful. When I visited them again over Christmas, I hoped for a better outcome. Nope. Worst Christmas of my life.

    When I visited my current boyfriend’s mom (around 6 months, I think), she had several old pictures of him with his ex-girlfriends framed around her house (think prom photo circa 1998). So that was weird. Fortunately, I absolutely love his mom and when I (hesitantly) spent last Christmas with them, I had a blast. It’s great to feel so accepted, like I have a second family.

    3. How do you decide when it’s the right time to make the introductions?
    The right time to make the introductions (formally) is once the relationship has passed the ‘fizzle out’ stage and realized its long-term potential.

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  • AnitaBath April 15, 2011, 9:01 pm

    If you want to be super horny on your vacay, I’d suggest reading Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander.”

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  • honeybeenicki April 15, 2011, 9:45 pm

    I’ve been with my husband for about 6 years (married for just over 2) so I see his mom and stepdad regularly. Lately, it has gone better than it used to, but it hasn’t always been so great. Its gone as far as me being told I wasn’t part of the family, but his ex-wife still is and that we “shouldn’t have any kids” and that I should “just be happy with the two he already has”. It has been a lot better recently, but still not great – but I’ll take what I can get.

    My husband and I actually rent a house with my mom (she lives in an upstairs apartment, we have the main house downstairs), so he meets her every day πŸ™‚

    As for books, I’m a huge fan of V.C. Andrews (analyze some of those relationship problems Wendy!) and J.D. Robb (one of Nora Roberts’ pen names) In Death books. Those are mostly just “for fun” books. One book I really loved was Sidewalk by Mitchel Duneier. Fantastic sociological look at the street vendors in Greenich Village.

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  • Ray25 April 16, 2011, 12:00 am

    Like someone said previously, high school is a bit different as far as meeting parents. Plus I didn’t really have any exclusive boyfriends in high school… I was always the brainy not-super-skinny/pretty friend of the girl all the guys liked. It was very frustrating that at that point all the PARENTS of the guys I liked wanted their sons to be with me, but they guys themselves didn’t want to. Thank God high school ended!

    The parents of my very long-term, first serious college boyfriend LOVED me. They were planning the wedding before we were. But I suspect it was because they liked the fact that I could take responsibility for him and he wasn’t their problem anymore. If that sounds like a red flag, it was… and I FINALLY M-edOA!

    I just flew across the country to meet my current boyfriend’s parents during the holidays, and it wasn’t the greatest outcome. They are immigrants to the US, and the day I arrived for my visit there was a terrorist attack in their old neighborhood – so the time period of my visit was actually a pretty sad time for them. They also had to work, and my bf took me to do a lot of sight-seeing, so I didn’t get to spend as much time with them as would have been ideal (and I take responsibility for much of that). After I left, they told my bf that while they thought I was a great person and they loved me, they didn’t think we were a good match. After getting over the initial hurt and examining the reasons they gave him, we realized pretty much all of them are things that they knew about me before they even met me, and most of them are completely culturally-based things that aren’t really true. At least they didn’t hate me, though, so my bf and I are really hoping that I get a chance to meet them again soon so they can really get to know me and see how we are together – because we think we’re an awesome match!

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  • lauren April 16, 2011, 12:06 am

    tina fey bossypants! It is fantastic…I’m going to be sad when its over.

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    • RoyalEagle0408 April 16, 2011, 3:58 pm

      I was going to suggest that. Not because I’ve read it yet (I will soon though), but because we went to the same HS. And yes, I did Summer Stage.

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    caitie_didn't April 16, 2011, 2:19 am

    I’ve met parents and extended family once. I met my now ex’s mom and grandmother (his parents are divorced so he’s quite close to his mom) about a week or two after we made it official (although we’d been ‘dating’ and ‘talking’ for several months before that). He met my parents a week or two after that. I was terrified to meet his family, but they were very friendly and seemed to love me!

    As for books, you could always pick a few off the BBC’s top 100 book list! It depends on what type of books you like, though. If you have never read The Alchemist (Paulo Coehlo), I highly recommend it, as it quite literally changed my view of spirituality and religion. Another favourite of mine is the Five People You Meet In Heaven. I bawl my eyeballs out every time I read it though, so it’s not exactly “light reading”.

    I’m a pretty voracious reader, so I have no end of book recommendations. Here’s an additional few:

    The His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman (best YA fiction of the decade, probably better than Harry Potter- and I’m a huge HP fan so feel free to make it rain little purple thumbs for this. I cannot recommend it enough).
    White Teeth or On Beauty (Zaidy Smith)
    The Corrections (Jonathon Franzen)
    The Bell Jar (Sylvia Plath- I’ve never been a poetry fan, but the few poems I find myself drawn to are hers)
    The Book of Negros (Lawrence Hill)
    literally anything by Timothy Findlay (he’s a Canadian author that is hard to find. Writes very surrealist literature, and for a first-timer reader I would recommend either The Wars or Not Wanted on the Voyage)
    Bloodletting and Miraculous Cures (great for the med students, nursing students and wannabes out there)
    The Outsiders (classic YA lit, but still amazing)
    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo etc (I know the entire world has read these books but they actually are very good)
    The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (a must read for anyone with an interest in cell biology/medical research/basic science.)

    As a child I absolutely adored Madeline L’Engel- her books were the perfect combination of YA fiction and science fiction and I think I’ve read every book she’s published. A good starting point for those unfamiliar with her novels is A Wind in the Door/A Wrinkle In Time/A Swiftly Tilting Planet trilogy.

    I’m currently trying to get my BBC top 100 book list up to 40 completed books (not that impressive, I know), and another book goal of mine is to read Autism’s False Prophets by Paul Offit (autism is a serious interest of mine and what I am hoping to do my Master’s research on). But seriously, if I were to recommend two items from my giant list, I would say 1). The Alchemist and 2). His Dark Materials.

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      caitie_didn't April 16, 2011, 2:34 am

      ooh ooh oh and “Dust” by Arthur Slade. Betcha you haven’t heard of it, but it is worth tracking down.

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    • Painted_lady April 16, 2011, 3:35 am

      God I love His Dark Materials. Not better than Harry Potter (SUCH an addict), but definitely the most thought-provoking YA fiction.

      Also, if you liked Madeleine L’Engle’s YA novels, her adult fiction is brilliant. Small Rain and Certain Women are both wonderful, and I can’t ever decide which I like better.

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      • MissDre April 16, 2011, 10:46 am

        The Book of Negroes is the most amazing book I’ve ever read. But Caitie, that’s it’s Canadian title. In the USA it’s called “Someone Knows My Name”. Not sure why, I guess they thought the word Negroes would upset people??

        Anyway, if you liked that book you’ll love all of Lawrence Hill’s other books. I think my second favourite by him is Some Great Thing.

        Is “His Dark Materials” the trilogy where The Golden Compass is from? I haven’t read it, but I saw the movie and I didn’t understand the controversy. Apparently they aren’t going to make the other books into movies.

      • MissDre April 16, 2011, 10:55 am

        PS I loved The Alchemist. AND Harry Potter rules πŸ™‚

      • Painted_lady April 16, 2011, 6:44 pm

        Yeah, The Golden Compass is the first book in the series. The author, Philip Pullman, wrote them in response to Paradise Lost, basically decrying religion on the basis of its destructive nature (people are evil, we must all believe this or that thing or we’re doomed, etc). There’s a lot of really controversial symbolism, and there are a lot of people of religion who are uncomfortable with the aggression toward religion.

        The movie removed most of that, and in compromising it pleased no one. The religious right who objected to the frankness of the books’ anti-religion themes didn’t like that the movie was made at all, and the people who love the books hated the movie for removing one of its major themes. It was sort of like if Warner Brothers had taken out all reference to witchcraft in the HP movies to make the religious right comfortable.

    • oldie April 16, 2011, 3:48 pm

      My wife and I both loved His Dark Materials. We liked The Alchemyst, but think the series has gone downhill since. The Necromancer is especially disappointing. We both liked Zelazny’s Amber series and think Charles Stross’s The Family Trade series is an improved updated in-spirit version.

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        caitie_didn't April 16, 2011, 8:28 pm

        Ah, I am talking about a different Alchemist I think. At first I was confused because I was like “series? what?” but then realized that they are in fact two different books.

      • MissDre April 17, 2011, 12:15 pm

        The only one I’ve heard of is The Alchemist by Paulo Cohelo (spelling?) Definitely changed my life. I actually got “Maktub” tattooed in Arabic on my thigh.

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        caitie_didn't April 17, 2011, 3:45 pm

        That’s the Alchemist I’m talking about! As silly as it is to say, it changed my life as well. And that’s just about the best tattoo idea I’ve ever heard of!

    • honeybeenicki April 18, 2011, 7:31 am

      Love His Dark Materials πŸ™‚ Its one of my favorites. I have a copy I’ve had for years and the dust jacket went missing in a move and the cover is all beat up because I read it so often!

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  • sarita_f April 16, 2011, 2:20 am

    BF #1 = met both of his parents but don’t remember much about. They seemed to like me well enough. I sure was putting up with a lot / paying for everything (guy was a total leach). This was from age 19-20.

    BF #2 = Good guy. Age 20-24. Started out as long distance (although we were good friends to start) and then I moved to his home town due to it being the only place I could find a job. From a relatively conservative culture and I was his first real gf so finally me them about 1.5 years in. His parents ADORED me (and I still have a lot of affection for them) and I still get emails from his mom every once in a while, letting me know when he’s single, etc. He and I are still in touch somewhat. Looking back he was a really good guy and, not to be totally high on myself, I really helped him become a better BF and I learned a lot about myself. I honestly thought he’d marry the next girl he dated but that didn’t end up happening.

    BF #3 (age 26-27) – His family was all in Africa or Middle East, and although European by origin and not conservative, there were just no trips while we were together. He’s married with a kid now, all accomplished within 1.5 years after we broke up (I’m 30 now). Of course. You’ve gotta be a fluffer for someone in life.

    Books – so I am seriously not a fun reader, these are not trashy ‘beach reads’ sorry: – – “Middlesex” by Jeffrey Eugenides, wrote “The Virgin Suicides” as well = Awesome writer, great story line
    – “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy (I like a lot of McCarthy’s stuff)
    – “Fay” by Larry Brown (another ‘southern gothic” writer, I guess)
    – “Girl, Interrupted” by Susanna Kaysen if you haven’t read it
    – “Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer” by Novella Carpenter – really an awesome book if you care about our food system. And honestly, the narrative arc is pretty good regardless. And seriously inspiring. I may take flack for this, but after reading this I decided to seriously reintroduce meat (naturally-raised, local, organic, free-range, all that) into my diet. Not by any means an intent of this book, but it’s still one of the things I came away with.
    – “The Help” – From what I hear, *everyone* has read this already so I may be too late in recommending. But if you need an audio-book component for your trip, THIS IS IT. I listened to it on my drive home and back for Christmas and it was awesome, made me want to keep driving just so I could finish it.

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    • Painted_lady April 16, 2011, 3:28 am

      Aaagh! Sarita_f, I didn’t read your “Middlesex” recommendation before I wrote. It’s probably my favorite book, um, ever. I almost didn’t pick it up because I wasn’t crazy about The Virgin Suicides (the writing style wasn’t very compelling to me although I thought the story was interesting), but it’s one I’ve read over and over and given it to others as well.

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    caitie_didn't April 16, 2011, 2:36 am

    Also, has anybody read “Room” by Emma Donoghue??? It’s supposed to be THE BOOK of the year (at least here in Canada) and I’d love an opinion before paying for it.

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    • zahav April 16, 2011, 6:59 am

      Room was an AMAZING book, but slow to start – The weird part is that the author switches idioms (probably unintentionally) often so it’s hard to tell whether the characters are north american or british. This seems like an unimportant detail but I found it kind of interrupted the flow. Anyways – Great book.

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  • Painted_lady April 16, 2011, 3:23 am

    I’ve met two sets of parents as an adult. Boyfriend #1’s parents were perfectly nice. It’s a shame he was out of his mind because I loved his mom and his sister. Boyfriend #2’s parents were very nice but so, so boring and reserved. My family is big and crazy and we drink a lot and have a lot of stupid movies we all love (Mel Brooks and John Waters are heavily quoted). I’m really close with my parents – friends but there’s still the parent vibe – and his parents and he kept a very well-defined boundary between the so-called adults and the children. I think my poor ex was probably terrified out of his mind to be around my family because we make dirty jokes and talk about our lives pretty freely and everybody was really happy and enthusiastic about meeting him and talked to him just like they would anyone, adult, child, their own generation or another one. Then with his parents, I was acting like some cracked-out golden retriever puppy trying to get his parents to like me, and they smiled and continued to chat politely about where I’d gone to school and what foods I liked at the restaurant we were eating at. Because there wasn’t that generational boundary between the members of my family, I can get along really well with people of any age, but because I was their (adult) son’s (adult) girlfriend, there were only certain things they were comfortable talking about with me. He said they liked me, but I always came away exhausted after having dinner with them because it was such an effort to even get them to talk normally.

    My now-boyfriend’s mother I’ve known more than half my life because we’ve been friends since middle school, but even so, I was nervous seeing her again. She was fantastic, though, and I love her dearly. When we stayed with her over Thanksgiving, my mom and I had the conversation beforehand about whether we’d be staying in the same room, and my mom told me she didn’t think she’d be okay with it if we had been at my parents. When my boyfriend’s mom insisted it would be silly for us to stay in different rooms, though, my mom decided she couldn’t be out-mommed, so she changed her tune when we were there a few weeks ago. I intend to thank his mom when I see her next.

    Also, Wendy, if you haven’t read it, I’d recommend “Middlesex” by Jeffrey Eugenides. It’s smart, funny, sad and very sweet. FWIW, Eugenides won the Pulitzer for it. It’s one of my favorite books. Also, pick up “The Red Tent” by Anita Diamant. It’s a take on the Jacob story in the Bible, but from the perspective of his only daughter.

    Sorry this is so long, folks! I always get carried away!

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  • cporoski April 16, 2011, 5:57 am

    I have met the parent’s four times the fourth being my husband. I always thought that being family oriented was important. Frankly, I was living at home when I met my husband so he met my parents on the first date. I met his parents on our third. This made me happy because he and I did not think it was a big deal.

    However, I dated another guy 4 times over 8 years. It started when I was fifteen. Over the course of that time he never wanted me to meet his family. I thought he was ashamed of me. After we broke up and he came back from his second tour in Afghanastan, I met them. He was ashamed of THEM. He didn’t like families in general because he hated where he came from. I realized that when I met him, he was already accepted to Princeton and reinvented himself as a cultured intelectual. It would have shattered the image of the new person he became.

    Overall, I think the longer you wait, the more pressure it puts on the meeting. If you meet and it is a quick hello before heading out, it is not that big of a deal then next time you cross paths. I would also imagine that the older you are, the longer you wait. I am one of those girls who went from my family house, to the sorority house, to my husbands house. The biggest stress is when your parents meet each other.

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    • kali April 16, 2011, 2:48 pm

      Or when your grown kids meet your new love. THAT’s stress.

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  • Emsz April 16, 2011, 6:41 am

    I have a completely unrelated question, but what do you do when you feel that someone is interested in you, and you aren’t in them?

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      sobriquet April 16, 2011, 9:30 pm

      I would try subtle hints at first to let him know you’re not interested. Talk to him about a guy you’re crushing on/dating/sleeping with. Tell him you want to set him up with someone. Those are fairly obvious “friend zone” topics of conversation.

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  • Christy April 16, 2011, 8:18 am

    Y’all, I just had a dream that I was in a DW situation. Specifically, I dreamed that my friend had somehow locked me into a 200 dollar dinner without me knowing about it. I started freaking out until I realized that DW had talked about it, at which point I realized it was a dream, at which point I let myself wake up (even though I somehow still thought it was real enough that I’d have to deal with it after waking up, because the dream world is CRAZY.)

    Anyway, I thought someone should know that DW has invaded my subconscious.

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    • MissDre April 16, 2011, 10:48 am

      I didn’t have a DW dream LoL but oh man, did I ever have the craziest nightmare last night. Sometimes I truly wonder where my subconscious puts together the insane dreams I have…

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      • Emsz April 16, 2011, 2:27 pm

        I hear you on that one. A few weeks ago I had a nightmare that was so awful that it took me at least half an hour of being awake to shake it…

      • Amy April 16, 2011, 2:34 pm

        A few weeks ago I dreamed that one of the partners in my firm chewed tobacco. I was so grossed out and confused by this for an entire weekend. She’s just not the kind of woman that would chew tobacco. It took until I saw her the following week to realize it was a dream. Made me wonder how “real” my reality is…

  • kali April 16, 2011, 2:46 pm

    Well, I’m older and I’ve met the parents a bunch of times, including during several serious relationships. My latest encounter was the one I most stressed over. My bf is 25 years younger than I am, we met online AND his parents did not approve of me just on principal. So when we finally met two years later, (by then bf had moved 2000 miles to move in with me and his parents and I had had limited but polite conversation) it was his birthday and we all went out to dinner. They picked us up at our house, had a glass of wine, we chatted, then headed out to the restaurant they insisted I select.

    Fortunately, bf knows them well and we’d already discussed appropriate dining choices, so the restaurant was a big hit. The evening went well and while we’ve never spent any extended time together, they did visit this year for a couple of days altho they stayed at a hotel and I was working most of the time.

    Not really sure what the moral of this tale is, except sometime you just have to put a smile on your face and vow to be pleasant. After all, it’s not going to last forever and you might just enjoy yourself.

    Now, books – as an English major, I read constantly in all genres. Here are some favorites:

    The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
    The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom
    Water for Elephants by Sarah Gruen (read it before you see the movie)
    Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley (a huge tome, retelling the Arthurian legend from a more feminine perspective. Not new but definitely worth the read)

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    • sarahthegreat April 16, 2011, 5:23 pm

      The Art Of Racing in the Rain was great! I just finished it recently. I am a really voracious reader and love all kinds of books, but for some reason those that are set in the here-and-now are the hardest for me to enjoy, but this one was great. Perfect. I think I soaked my copy in tears.

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    katieosaurus April 16, 2011, 3:07 pm

    I’ve really only had two serious relationships, and one was in high school. I used to go to his house nearly every weekend, and really enjoyed just spending time sitting and talking with his mom. She was a lovely woman, very kind, sweet, and genuine. And his dad was nice, and a really interesting person, but overall, I don’t think he liked me particularly much. It was nice though when the parents were so kind like that, it was much less stressful to go to his house so often when they’re nice people; I’m a very nervous person around those I don’t know very well, and this really helped to put me at ease.
    I met my current boyfriend’s mother one day at work when we first became official; she was picking him up for a family dinner, and he wanted me to come meet her quick. He’s finishing up his degree at university and works at a fast food restaurant until he’s finished and can get a job in his field. I also work there for now, in both the kitchen and as a cashier, and unfortunately I was in the kitchen that day. So frumpy! Hairnet and everything! But I came out and said hi anyway, she’s very sweet and nice, so I lucked out! She’s had me over for dinner a few times now, and has told my boyfriend that she’s very happy to get to know me better.
    As far as boyfriends meeting my parents, they hated my last one, and love my current one. The first boyfriend didn’t like my parents either, but my current thinks they’re wonderful. As it turns out, my parents were right about the first, he ended up being quite bad for me and was very controlling. So far they like my current one, I hope it stays that way!
    For books, I’d recommend anything by Jodi Picoult; very well written, great stories, with surprising twists. I’m such a voracious reader though, I could go on and on for hours! But others have mentioned some of my favorites already!

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    eel avocado April 16, 2011, 4:06 pm

    My boyfriend and I both spend A LOT of time with the other’s parents. Even though we’re in our mid-20s, we’re both living with our parents. My boyfriend was laid off for two years and moved back in with his parents to save money; I moved back in with my parents while I was in graduate school. On top of that, we’re also long distance. We try and see each other every other week, so we see each other’s parents just as much. Luckily, we all get along great. I don’t think I could go out with a guy that didn’t love my parents and brothers as much as I do!

    There was a period of time at the beginning of our relationship where we lived in the same area and I had an apartment. We had decided to go on vacation with each other early on in our “exclusivity” (3 months in), but I had not met his parents and he had not met mine. As the vacation got closer (5 months in), I began to feel like he should meet my parents before we went overseas together. He was reluctant at first, but then agreed. We ended up staying overnight at my parents’ house and it worked out great. That night, we had a talk and became “official boyfriend-girlfriend”; I met his parents soon after. Now, two and a half years later, we feel comfortable spending time with the other’s parents without each other there. He plays basketball with my dad. I volunteer with his mom. Even though our living situations aren’t ideal, I’m truly glad I’m able to spend so much time with his parents. Most people don’t get that opportunity! I’ve learned a great deal from them. (And, thank goodness, we get along.)

    Books: Thirteen Moons, The Septembers of Shiraz, The Hunger Games, Three Cups of Tea.

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  • sarahthegreat April 16, 2011, 5:32 pm

    Some of my favorite books/series off the top of my head:
    the “Ender” books (starting with Ender’s Game) – Orson Scott Card. Genius!
    A Tree Grows in Brooklyn – Betty Smith
    The House of the Spirits – Isabel Allende
    Life of Pi – Yann Martel
    The Bean Trees – Barbara Kingsolver

    I could go on and on and on so I will stop now.

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      caitie_didn't April 16, 2011, 8:31 pm

      I love Life of Pi!

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    • kali April 16, 2011, 8:48 pm

      I LOVED Ender’s Game but not so much with the rest of the series. I like major female characters.

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  • Caroline April 17, 2011, 12:07 am

    First kind of boyfriend (we were never really official, yet we were involved on and off over two years. It was complicated and it sucked and I’m glad I’m over it!) – We met senior year of high school and went to Homecoming together. Funnily enough, I had just started working at a nearby Barnes and Noble at the beginning of the year, around the same time I met him, (and we had a class together) and his mom also worked there! Things didn’t work out after Homecoming (because he was stupid) but I still work with his mom, who I absolutely ADORE. She’s a wonderful woman and she loves me too. The guy and I are still kind of friends, but I definitely like his mom better now. Lol. And he used to spend time at my place all the time during the two summers that we were “together” so he and my parents knew each other pretty well. My mom totally loved him and would talk about politics and stuff with him.

    Current (and first official) boyfriend – It’s a little more complicated than with the first guy. We both live with our parents, because we’re both in school and it’s a way to save money. He didn’t meet my parents until we’d been dating about 5 or 6 months I believe, and it was very briefly from what I recall. I didn’t tell my parents about him until we’d been dating for two months because I didn’t want to say anything in case it ended up not working out. But he’s met my parents quite a few times now, including dinners at my house, and so far they seem to like him. My mom especially loves him I think, because he’s so smart and he knows a lot about everything. His parents….I met his mom many months later, because I actually didn’t start hanging out at his house until we’d been dating about 8 months. The evolution of our relationship was kinda odd, but it worked, so whatever. But also, every time I went over to his place it was always after everyone in his house was asleep because that’s usually when we wanted to see each other. I have talked to his mom a few times, and she seems nice, I like her. I just met his dad a few days ago, since his dad is always out of town for his job. His dad also seems nice, but I haven’t talked to him too much. I haven’t “formally” met the parents, I guess. But I think they like me.

    Long comment, lol. Sorry!

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  • SpyGlassez April 17, 2011, 2:18 am

    Books? If you want a break from fiction, I love Mary Roach – especially “Spook” and “Stiff.” She’s a comedic writer, and those two especially are funny. I like Umberto Eco’ s “The Name of the Rose.” I don’t read a lot of series books. My boyfriend recommends Kim Harrison.

    As far as meeting the parents, as I said – I met his about a month after we’d been dating; he met mine about 3 months in. This past Christmas (just over a year into our relationship) I went to his extended family in Ohio. Both sides of his extended family live there, and so we spent 10 days staying with his parents first in the house of his grandmother on one side (who disapproved of us living together and hadn’t wanted me staying there in the first place) and then his aunt and uncle on the other side who seemed to enjoy the fact that we are “living in sin.” Awkward 10 days, especially since, while we live together, we are not sexually active. By contrast, he met some of my family when he came down to where they lived at the time of my grandmother’s funeral (He was on the way down hoping to be able to meet her but she passed away suddenly before he got there) and the rest a few months later when he came with me to my cousin’s wedding.

    Our parents met one another when my roommate and I were moving in to my boyfriend’s apartment. My parents are religious, whereas his are not, and his mom kept asking me if my dad was “okay with” us living together. His mom, my mom, and I ended up going to the store for groceries together while our dads and him were in charge of the “unloading crew” (my sister and her friends and a couple of our friends). But it wasn’t an “official” meeting. We’d like to all go out to dinner together some time soon, but we have to either get my parents up to our city, or his down to theirs.

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  • Rachel April 17, 2011, 4:38 am

    So, I recently bought a ridiculous number of books from a library book sale, which included many recently popular books that they had too many copies of – so basically I’ve been reading things that many other people have read but I have only just now gotten to.

    Among the ones that I would recommend :

    Memoirs of a Geisha
    The Kite Runner
    The Lovely Bones

    and a random trip to B&N led me to What is the What by Dave Eggers ….really good.

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    • Erika April 18, 2011, 11:58 am

      If you like the Kite Runner you should definitely try A Thousand Splendid Suns by the same author! I loooove that book!!

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  • Mae April 17, 2011, 10:47 am

    I have met the parents a few times.

    The most interesting meet the parents was an ex-boyfriend’s mother and step father. We went to their place for dinner. She had this mean bird named sh*thead that kept dive bombing my hair and cursing at me. She also made it a point to repeatedly let me know how much she wanted grandchildren and was hoping to get some soon. My ex was an only child.

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  • LolaBeans April 17, 2011, 3:42 pm

    Barney’s Version by Mordecai Richler is a good read. It’s funny, sad etc. Good vacation read, I’d say!

    Will you still be posting things while away on vacation?? please say yes!!!

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  • JJ April 17, 2011, 10:17 pm

    I have met the parents of significant others a few times, sometimes when the relationship was more casual or at times when it was getting serious. I didn’t really have an issue with meeting the parents, other than the usual anxiety or shyness that comes with it. I don’t think that there is a set time to make the introductions as long as both people feel comfortable.

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  • Fairhaired Child April 17, 2011, 11:50 pm

    I’ve met parents of my (then) boyfriends parents in 5 of my relationships. The only time it felt odd was when my one boyfriend and I had only been dating for 2 weeks before I was introduced. And yes it has gone less than perfect plenty of times, but usually the second meeting goes easier and less awkward. As for me introducing boyfriends to my mom, I’m pretty sure I’ve introduced all of them to her, weither it was because they were coming to pick me up from her house, or because I needed to stop by her work. My mom and I are really close and so I never though of ever -not- introducing a boyfriend to her (plus she worked at the college I went to so it wasn’t like I had any “secret relationships”).

    I think the worst introduction to my Mom has been when I introduced a boyfriend to her while we were passing her in the parking lot and she was about to go on a bike ride (she’s a bike-a-holic) and she was polishing her new monogramed bike and he was like “oh your last name is ____” and my mom and I just stared at him.. we had been casually dating for about 2 months, and oh did I mention he had the EXACT SAME LAST NAME?

    I dont think I’ve ever really thought of when a good time was to introduce them, it usually came in a casual way instead of like “oh i want you to meet my mom so we are going to dinner with her so she can meet you and give you the stare down”. However, when it comes to my brother (who is the male role model in my life) he has only met 2 of my boyfriends EVER (and one of them was when I was like 14). He still hasn’t met my current boyfriend (we’ve been dating over a year) and I’m very nervous about them meeting. My mom is really layed back, where I feel like I have a lot more to “show” to my brother when it comes to my relationships, and that my boyfriends have more to prove to him than they do to her (her and I are both super friendly and my brother is the more reserved quiet type).

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    BecBoo84 April 18, 2011, 11:39 am

    The Story of Jane: The Legendary Underground Feminist Abortion Service (Laura Kaplan), Lucky (Alice Sebold), and Youth in Revolt (C.D. Payne) are a few of my favs. Not sure what you look for on vacation though, because with the first two are definitely not light reads.

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  • Erika April 18, 2011, 12:03 pm

    Book Recs:

    Summer Sisters by Judy Blume
    The Hunger Games Trilogy
    Queen of Camelot by Nancy McKenzie
    Water For Elephants
    A Thousand Splendid Suns

    Most of these I chose because when I go on vacation I like to have light reads.

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      BecBoo84 April 19, 2011, 11:20 am

      Summer Sisters and A Thousand Splendid Suns were also going to be on my list, but I decided to limit it to 3. Good picks!

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    Skyblossom April 18, 2011, 1:03 pm

    Because my husband is from England I didn’t meet his parents until after we were married. They didn’t come to the wedding and we were both in grad school so didn’t have the money to go over and visit them until my husband got his degree and started his job. I wasn’t nervous the first time I met them even though we were spending two weeks in their home. It didn’t occur to me to be nervous, my husband is a great guy and I assumed he must come from a great family. Today I think I’d be more nervous but I’ve always been an optimist and just assume things will go well. Looking back, I think it would have been better for his parents if we would have gone to see them before the wedding so that they could meet me. They were the ones who were nervous and they were upset that their son was getting married and probably not coming home. In spite of that, they were warm, friendly and gracious when I met them.

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  • Fergn8r April 18, 2011, 3:24 pm

    My parents have met 2 ex boyfriends and I’ve met both of their parents. The first one was fine and low key…perhaps because my parents didn’t know we were dating and just thought they were meeting a guy friend! His parents were very old money and uptight but polite enough. The other ex, my longest relationship, I introduced him to my mother after about 2 months of dating when she came to visit me for a weekend. Within 5 minutes she was interrogating him about politics, ethics, his education, religious beliefs etc. It was horrible and not all of his opinions were in line with hers to say the least. I had never seen this side of my mom and had not expected it to go that way at all! It was so awkward and I was constantly jumping in the middle and it made me very tense all through dinner. My mom made it obvious she didn’t really like him and to this day I don’t know why. To his credit he was amazingly patient and he didn’t let it get in the way of us at all. When I met his parents about 6 months later they were the friendliest and nicest people ever and it just made me cringe even more about how my mom had treated him. When he met my dad, they bonded over a golf game and got along better, but my parents never truly warmed to him in the over 2 years we dated. Although the breakup was bad and really dislike him for a lot of things in the end, I’ve always felt a little bad about that parent/bf relationship. Now I’m very gunshy to introduce my mom to anyone!

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  • Elle April 19, 2011, 11:40 am

    I really liked “On Love – A Novel” by Alain de Botton.
    I recently read Kreutzer Sonata – not a light read, but so good.
    And I also read “The Diary of a Seducer” by Kierkegaard. I don’t know what I was thinking with this one…

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