Are You Ready to Invite Your S.O. to Your Family's Holiday Gathering?

With the holiday season rapidly approaching, you may be wondering if it's too soon to invite your new S.O. to your next family gathering.

Whether it's Thanksgiving, Christmas or another holiday get-together, here are the things to consider before you make that next big step in your relationship.

The Relationship Is Serious

If you bring an S.O. to any holiday celebration, your family is probably going to assume that your relationship is pretty serious. If you don't consider yourself "official," don't bring them. You should also sit down with your significant other and define the relationship if you haven't already. People are going to ask all kinds of questions about you, and if the night reveals that the two of you have totally different views on where things stand, things are probably going to get awkward. Believe us, you do not want to have to hash it out publicly in front of your entire family.


(Thor 2: The Dark World via Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)


They've Already Met (and Get Along With) Your Immediate Family

If your S.O. hasn't already met your parents and siblings, it might not be the best idea to have them over for the holidays. It really helps when they're already friendly and familiar with at least a few people attending the party. It's stressful enough to try to make a good impression on just a few people, and introducing them to every single member of your extended family at once is likely to completely overwhelm them. Meeting someone's family is something that should be eased into. The more people they have to consider, the more likely it becomes that they'll struggle to leave the right impression.


Your Family Isn't Expecting Someone Else

If any members of your family knew your last S.O. and are still expecting them to show up instead of your new partner, chances are that they'll bring that person up—especially if they liked them. This can be a problem if you haven't openly talked about this ex with your current significant other. Decide whether it's worth informing everyone in your family or having an uncomfortable convo with your S.O. (or both) or if you'd rather not risk it.


(Shrek 2 via DreamWorks Pictures)


You Trust Them Not to Embarrass Both of You

The holidays can be tricky, and the nature of a giant holiday dinner mixed with unusual family traditions can open up the floodgates for awkward situations. Will they make an effort to dress well and attempt to not look too undignified while they stuff their face and fall into a food coma? If you think they're likely to be a slob, talk politics and accidentally insult someone, maybe it's not the right time for them to meet your family. If you have to, coach them through topics to avoid for the night. Also let them know what your celebrations look like and inform them of any unusual customs your family has so they're not caught off guard. The more prepared they are, the better impression they'll make.


They Want to Be Part of the Celebration

The most important factor in whether or not your S.O. should join your family gathering is whether they actually want to go. If you're not confident that they're actually comfortable, have an open conversation with them and let them know it's okay if they'd rather not go and you won't force them. If you're a little upset about it, try to see things from their perspective. Are you close enough to their family that you'd be totally at ease celebrating with them, too? As much as you might want to spend that time together, it might be for the best that you don't.


(Riverdale via The CW)


Before you bring your S.O. to meet your family, you should probably let them know about them. Click HERE for tips on telling your parents you're in a relationship.