With the holidays fast approaching, you’re probably wondering if you and your new honey are ready to spend the season together. But going to your partner’s family home over the holidays can be a big deal.
Not only is there the stress of getting to know your partner’s whole family, but there’s the added pressure of what it means to take this momentous step. For some, bringing a partner to their home for the holidays is a way of saying you’re “serious,” some might even see it as a sort of pre-engagement. It’s a big deal.
So, how do you know if you’re ready?
Answer the questions below to find out if you should spend the holidays with your sweetie.
1. Do you see yourself spending the next year together?
It’s a simple question, but at the same time, not so simple. There’s no relationship crystal ball. You can’t know for sure if you’re going to be together in a year, six months, or even a month from now. Especially in new relationships, it’s hard to anticipate what will happen next.
But two things you can track is how you feel and what your intentions are. Start asking yourself how the relationship has been going so far. Have you seen any red flags? Or has everything been smooth sailing? Do you want to be with this person in the long term, or do you see it as just a fling?
Just because a relationship is new doesn’t mean it isn’t serious. If you find yourself wanting to be together 6 months from now, or even a year from now, go ahead and spend the holidays together. You might even end up feeling closer over the holiday season, and bonding even more.
If, on the other hand, your not sure if you see each other together in the coming months, if things are already rocky and you’re not sure if this person is a potential for, say, marriage—maybe skip it. Spending time with a partner’s family probably isn’t going to make a relationship better, so don’t waste your (or your partner’s) time.
2. Do you talk about your families all the time, but haven’t met them?
For some people, family is a big deal.
Have you noticed your partner talks about family often? Does he or she mention the crazy things their sister does or the sweet things their dad used to do when they were growing up? Do they look forward to visits with their nieces and nephews?
If this sounds like your partner (or even if it sounds like you!) meeting the family might be a bigger deal than you think.
If family is a big deal to one, or both of you, meeting the family may be a make-or-break scenario. Some people consider it a “deal breaker” if their family doesn’t like, or get along with, a partner. While this certainly isn’t the case with everyone (I once had a friend who more or less stopped talking to his entire family because they were rude to his wife) if your partner really cares about their family’s opinion, it could affect your relationship.
If this is the case, meeting the family (and seeing how you get along) is probably a good thing to do sooner rather than later.
3. Do you want to move forward in your relationship?
Maybe you, or your partner, aren’t particularly close with your families. Maybe you’ve been out on your own for a while and whether or not your family “approves” of your partner isn’t that big of a deal to you. And yet, meeting family over the holiday might still be a big deal to both of you.
Meeting family doesn’t have to be a big to-do or have underpinnings of a “test.” Spending time with family doesn’t have to be about whether or not the family likes a new partner. Sometimes, it’s just about you two, and wanting to show each other that you’re serious about your relationship.
Going to a partner’s house for the holidays can be a big step, and being willing to do that together can mean a lot to some couples.
Of course, spending the holidays together shouldn’t be a way to “prove” your commitment, and agreeing to go to Christmas at your partner’s family home doesn’t take the place of having that good old fashion “where are we?” talk. But spending the holidays together, and with each other’s families, can be a good way to show each other that you’re really taking the relationship seriously.
4. Do you want to go for it?
Perhaps you simply want to go to your partner’s family home for the holidays.
Spending time together doesn’t have to have an ulterior motive—like moving forward in a relationship. Maybe you want your relationship to stay the same. Maybe you just don’t have anywhere else to go for the holidays. Or maybe you simply think it would be fun.
While some couples think spending the holidays together is a big step, it doesn’t have to be a big deal. Talk about it beforehand, and if you both seem like you’re on the same page, go for it. Even if you’re not thinking your relationship is very “serious” now, maybe you two have the makings for something more. No matter what, wanting to spend time with your partner is a good sign.
On the other hand, it’s when you’re feeling a sense of dread about going to his or her home for the holidays, that you have to look out for.
If your partner asked you if you to come over for the holidays, and your immediate reaction was panic, you may want to consider the possibility that this may not be the right relationship for you.
Whether you’re hoping to take your relationship to the next level this season, or are just hoping for great company over the holidays, spending time with your new partner’s family can be fun and exciting. But before you pack your bags, make sure you’re ready for this big step.