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Meeting Her Family for the First Time: A Survival Guide

With the holidays fast approaching, many guys will be meeting their girl’s family for the first time. From big family get-togethers to casual dinners with the immediates, Eric Rogell, the guy behind and author of the upcoming book, The Art of War for Dating, is here to give guys tips on how to nail a good first impression, no matter what the setting.   

1. Think Classic Style
Maybe at your family’s house it’s perfectly acceptable to spend Thanksgiving dinner walking around in your sweats, but no dad wants to think his daughter is dating a bum. Go for classic style—no sweats or graphic tees for that matter.  Jeans and a sport jacket work everywhere. From the neck up, be clean shaven (even if she likes the scruff), and use a dab of a nice scent so you smell fresh when leaning in for a hug. Try AXE Dark Temptation which incorporates gourmet scents (like chocolate, perfect for the holidays) into the fragrance.

2. Don’t Show Up Empty Handed
Mama always told me to never show up to a dinner party empty handed – especially a holiday dinner party. So for her mom, bring a special dish or dessert, and have a story about it. Maybe it’s an old family recipe your mom taught you when you went off to college, or it came from a little French bakery you discovered.

3. You’re on the Campaign Trail
Your job is to convince her family that you’re a good guy. So when you get there, start shaking hands and kissing babies … and grandmothers. Remember, mom wants a sweetheart, dad wants a gentleman. Be both.

4. Have Something to Say
This is no time to be shy or sit in the corner. Join the conversation, and have your own stories to add. Just not the one about your old frat bro, Meatball, who could shoot cranberry sauce out of his nose.

5. Lend a Hand
Two words that should never come out of your mouth while you’re there: “Women’s Work.” Ask early, and often, if you can help in the kitchen. After dinner offer to help wash and/or dry, and take out the trash. They may say no, in which case you’re free to retire to the living room to watch the game with dad and the uncles.

Eric Rogell is the guy behind, the go-to resource for men who want to raise their status above “Neanderthal.” His first book, The Art of War for Dating, will be available nationwide in February.