Social Question

AnonymousWoman's avatar

Let's say you have a 22 year old son and he has chosen to introduce you to his 22-23 year old girlfriend. What do you expect from her?

Asked by AnonymousWoman (6505points) February 20th, 2013

What do you want her work history to be like? What about her school history? How do you want her to treat your son? How do you want her to treat you? Would you judge her for her family? Would you judge her for her appearance? Would you treat her with suspicion? Feel free to answer about anything else I didn’t mention.

My boyfriend of almost 5 months wants to introduce me to his Mom, but I’m really nervous. I don’t want to fake who I am to impress her, though. I just want to know what to potentially expect.

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31 Answers

snowberry's avatar

I have children close to that age. I’d like my kids to find partners who are respectful of each other and of other people (including me). I’d rather that they are not focused on material things, but are interested instead on spiritual growth. If they marry, I’d prefer they enter marriage out of debt, and take time to know each other (at least a year) by using one of the many “before you say I do” books. Here’s a link to one.

As for that first introduction, I wish I could make you comfortable. I have no desire to judge you, just get to know you.

JLeslie's avatar

5 years and you have never met his mom? Does she live out of the country?

I think moms vary so much. I’m the type of person that I assume the best about people and if a family member brings home a girlfriend or boyfriend I welcome them right in. At 22 I would expect you to be in college or working. I’d want to get the impression you are responsible. I like people who smile, have a sense of humor, confident and relaxed. Someone who is not glued to my son, who talks to everyone who is present, but at the same time she and my son seem to have a nice bond, and that he appears happy in the relationship.

Other moms you have to win them over. They are like this with everybody probably when they meet people. I would assume your boyfriend has already given you an idea of what his mom is like.

Some cultures there is more expectations of the girlfriend offering to help in the kitchen, both cooking and cleaning, and generally to behave in a more subservient way (that is really too extreme to describe it) to their boyfriend in social gatherings, like offer to get him a drink, even if at home and in life in general they are very equal in the relationship and careers. Always safest to offer to help when at her house and she is cooking. At least initially.

Mostly, just be yourself. Your boyfriend loves you and you ahould have every reason to think his mom will too.

As far as your family, I would not judge you based on your family, but if your family is very messed up I would look for clues demonstrating you are different than them. I think it is very unfair to judge someone based on other people they cannot control.

Other tips: Don’t drink alcohol if they aren’t. Don’t have more than one glass of alcohol no matter how much they drink.

ragingloli's avatar

Some “favours”. if you catch my drift

JLeslie's avatar

Oh, 5 months, I don’t know why I read 5 years the first time. Ignore my first sentence.

Shippy's avatar

As long as she treated my son well she could look like a naked dwarf for all I care.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I would want her to be polite, appropriately dressed for the weather, and willing to make some chit chat.
It wouldn’t hurt if she was going to med school, spoke 6 languages fluently, and came from a wealthy family. But that would not be required.

If my son is happy, I am happy.

JLeslie's avatar

Med school. So sterotypical. LOL. What, lawyer isn’t good enough?

LuckyGuy's avatar

@JLeslie I want my son to be happy and not live in fear. (I also wouldn’t disapprove if she were a rocket scientist.)

JLeslie's avatar

@LuckyGuy No religious requirement? Just curious.

Not live in fear? What about a girlfriend would communicate to you he won’t live in fear?

zensky's avatar

If my son is happy, I am happy.

Pandora's avatar

Ideally I would hope she is well educated and takes good care of herself and makes my son very happy and he equally makes her happy and is close in age to him and wants children. Also very sweet. (Oh, and no criminal record!) Also has no mental defect. And she not be a leach. I also would detest a closed minded individual. Not a Buddhist because most people suck at it except for real asian Buddhist and definitly not a SCIENTOLOGIST or any faith that requires you break away from your family to participate in it.

Now for the plus side that is nice but not a deal breaker.
Pretty, has an excellent job, christian values, has a close relationship with her parents and her parents have been happily married to each other all her life. No alcoholics, and no jailbirds. Also healthy genetics. Better chance my grand kids have of not getting asthma.

Things that don’t matter to me, race, nationality, most religions, or if she has money or not.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@JLeslie I should have preceded my comment about “living in fear” with a ”~”. I was joking about whether he’d be happy living with lawyer. I’m guessing she’d have a spectacular set of pre-nups. ~

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Be yourself. Mom’s see through fake crap faster than almost anyone else. Treat your guy well, be polite and respectful, and you’ll do fine. And be ready for a little ribbing from the males in his family. They seem to love that stuff.

Coloma's avatar

Just be yourself and if the mom doesn’t like you, too bad, that’s her problem.
My daughter is 25 and been with her boyfriend for 3 years now and it never crossed my mind to judge him or her taste in guys. I really like him, and while he was shy at first he has really opened up and I have always made him feel welcome.
I believe in total acceptance of whoever an adult child chooses to do, or be with, short of a crack head or criminal.

My daughters boyfriend is extremely smart, has a great sense of humor and treats her well, anything else isn’t my business.
Good luck, and hopefully the mom will be like me, open, friendly, funny and totally accepting of her sons choices. :-)

livelaughlove21's avatar

It’s not a job interview. I’d be less worried about how you should “act” in front of this woman and more concerned about why it took 5 years for him to want her to meet you.

Mothers come in all varieties. There’s no way for us to know what she expects or wants from you. “Be yourself” is really the only advice worth giving. If she’s like most moms, she just wants her son to be happy and with someone that treats him well and loves him.

Of course, having goals in life is always a plus, but that’s not specific to meeting his mother. Just go in there without putting on some act, be polite and honest, and relax. Meeting mom probably isn’t a huge deal here, especially considering it took so long to get there.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

It’s five months jellies.
@AnonymousWoman And don’t sweat it if you feel she doesn’t approve of you right off. My mother has never excepted any of my sister’s guys ever. I don’t know if it’s gender related, but if she’s cool to you just be polite and treat her well. This is racist/nationalism, but what’s her background?

JLeslie's avatar

@livelaughlove21 5 months, not 5 years.

ucme's avatar

Not a thing, i’d trust my son’s judgement in choosing his girlfriend & indeed her immaculate taste in men.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@JLeslie Oops. Skimmed over the question and then saw the first line of your response and didn’t double check. My bad.

wundayatta's avatar

I hope she’ll be herself. I’m not going to tell my son what I think, because that’s really none of my business, good or bad. I mean, if he asks, I might say a little, but I hope he knows his own mind. My job is to be supportive, even if he’s making a mistake in my opinion.

So I just want to get to know her and I’d like to like her. I want him to be happy with her. Other than that, I can’t judge based on her career or education or background because I don’t know how she’ll change over life.

I know my parents didn’t like one of my girlfriends, but they never told me. I think they liked the one I married the best. I don’t know. They never said. I think my wife probably gets along with them better than I do, now. But I guess they’re the only “parents” she has, now that hers are gone.

Life is long and relationships change over the years. Just remember, the first impression is just the first impression. Things can change over the years, even if they don’t like you at first.

I think that if you ask a question like this, you are probably not an exuberant, outgoing person. You’re more of a worrying type. I don’t know how that will mesh with his parents. They could be outgoing and think you are repressed. Or they could be very closed up and think you are wild. You never know.

I think your goal should be to get to know them. They are, after all, your bf’s parents, and shouldn’t be too different from him, unless he befriended you to make a point to them. A kind of rebellion.

Aethelwine's avatar

My sons are close to this age. I trust their judgement and welcome anyone they bring home to meet me. Quit fretting, relax and be yourself. An understanding parent will notice if you are nervous and hopefully help to make you feel more comfortable.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@AnonymousWoman See if this makes you feel better. My girlfriend at the time had come from Germany when she was a toddler. I had asked if I could bring her home and given a little background. My stepfather loves to twist people’s tails. We walk in the door that night for the first time and he says “Well hello Kraut”. They’ve gotten along well ever since.

JLeslie's avatar

I flagged my answer, hopefully auggie changes it.

Judi's avatar

When my children were dating I always hoped that they had a family we could have Christmas with so they wouldn’t have to do the yours or mine holiday dance. Other than making my child happy I had no other expectations and worried more that they would like me.

JLeslie's avatar

@Judi Jewish in-laws solves that problem. :)

I love that you mention you worried they would like you. Of course it makes sense that everyone in the situation wants everyone to like each other, and everyone might be feeling a little awkward. I had not even thought of the mom’s perspective from that angle.

augustlan's avatar

@JLeslie Since it’s been discussed and corrected in later comments, changing it now would disrupt the flow of the discussion.

All I would care about is whether the person is good to my child and makes them happy. Anything else is not important, pretty much.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

Thanks for all of the advice, everyone. I really appreciate it. I will get back to all of your responses in a bit. Also, for the people who thought we’ve been official for 5 years when we’ve only been official for almost 5 months, it’s okay. I’ve been friends with him since he was 16 and I was 17, so you guys do have a point. He tends to keep his personal life separate from his family because he is a very private person, though. That is one of the reasons I’m nervous. I’ve known other guys who had no trouble introducing me to their parents, regardless of my ‘relationship’ to them.

burntbonez's avatar

I expect her to be nice and polite. Unless my family isn’t nice and polite. Then I have no idea.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

Hey, sorry for not getting back to you guys. I thought I’d be able to, but I ended up being busy.

* I’ve decided I’m going to send you guys messages because the post I was making for this was getting way too long. I may post things on this thread if I feel they would be useful for everyone to know, though.

Thanks again.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

I found this thread again, so I felt like updating…

Good news: I am now in contact with his Mom. He decided to tell his Mom about me on Mother’s Day (cute, in my opinion). And we started talking on Facebook since then. I may meet her next week and we are really excited to meet each other. :)

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