“My Most Mortifying Meet-The-Parents Moment”

Nervous about introducing your date to your folks during the holidays? Don’t worry—chances are, you won’t crash and burn quite like these poor people did!

By Amy Keyishian

es, it’s that time of year again—when newly-minted couples head home for the holidays and face the ultimate test: introducing their date to their family (or being introduced). Even if your family isn’t utterly crazy, that moment when a new love interest meets your parents is still tense and nerve-wracking. What if someone makes a bad first impression? What if that someone is you?! To take the edge off any jitters you might be feeling over a looming family meet-up — or, heck, just to entertain you — we collected some truly amusing tales of meet-the-parent scenarios that went spectacularly awry.

Sticky situation
“The first time I took my girlfriend to meet my parents in their new home, I’d broken a plate, and she piped up helpfully to say she could fix it with Super Glue. I had my
“His parents’ new puppy ran up… and rrrrrripped my whole skirt off!”
reservations; my girlfriend was a little on the clumsy side. Sure enough, within thirty seconds she had whacked the glue off the table and onto the floor. She quickly wiped it up, fixed the plate and set it down. Only then she realized her foot was stuck to the floor! She had glued down her entire shoe so firmly, we couldn’t even insert a putty knife between shoe and floor. In the end, there was a net loss of one square foot of linoleum, which my parents had to replace.”
—Mike, 28, South Holland, IL

Barking mad
“I went to meet my new boyfriend’s family and since they lived out in the woods in West Virginia, I doused myself in citronella bug spray when we got there. His father commented immediately on how strong the smell was and wouldn’t let it go; I finally offered to change, but before I could get my clothes out of the back of the car, their new puppy ran up, delighted to see us, clamped his jaws onto my new silk skirt, and rrrrrripped the whole skirt off me in one long, concentric strip. Josh’s father and stepmother thought this was simply hilarious and fake-scolded the dog without really doing anything about the fact that I was standing there clinging both to the last shreds of my dignity and my skirt.”
—Amy, 39, San Francisco, CA

Jinxed jewelry
“I was nervous about meeting my boyfriend’s family, especially since they’re quite religious, and I’m from a different background. So I had dressed extremely conservatively for the holiday dinner. Everyone was really polite, but my boyfriend’s nephew — an extremely lively 4-year-old — spotted my tongue piercing and loudly asked, ‘What’s that in your mouth?’ It wasn’t quite the way I’d hoped to impress them.”
—Emily, 33, San Francisco, CA

Shotgun wedding?
“I knew my girlfriend’s family was, shall we say, countrified, but I didn’t realize how much till I went to meet them during one holiday. Her dad proclaimed that he liked me, cracked open a beer, and produced his prize twelve-gauge pump-action shotgun and loaded it in the kitchen, describing to me how much he enjoyed his gun. He then laughed
I felt self-conscious for the rest of the weekend.
heartily, waved the loaded gun, and asked, ‘So, when you gonna marry my daughter?’ I was out of there — and out of her life — before you could say grace!”
—Mike, 45, Philadelphia, PA

Anatomy class
“Early on in my relationship with my now-husband, I brought him home for the holiday break. All went well the first night; he stayed in the guest room. Now, my dad is a urologist and has an extremely realistic replica of the male equipment in his home office. Anyway, my parents — who I swear are normally very pleasant and normal people — thought it would be funny to fling this replica into the guest room to wake Michael up in the morning. They did, and they were collapsed in hysterics in the hallway, waiting to hear his reaction. But then Michael did them one better by appearing in the doorway with the fake you-know-what poking out from the bottom of his shorts! Who was mortified by this? Oh… just ME!”
—Karen, 35, Morristown, NJ

Caught with your pants down
“I brought my boyfriend home to meet my parents for the holidays. Once everyone had arrived and got chatting, he and I disappeared upstairs, which became apparent when everyone decided to toast my sister’s engagement. Noticing we were gone, my dad came upstairs to discover us in the guest room, me in my undies and blouse and my boyfriend zipping up his khakis. Talk about mortifying! We couldn’t really make eye contact with anyone for the rest of our visit.”
—Jen, 34, Darien, CT

Fuzzy on the details
“As my fiancé and I pulled up in his parents’ driveway, hellos and hugs ensued. We walked into the house and since there was white carpet and my husband took off his shoes, I followed suit. What I didn't realize would be an issue was that I was wearing black socks: When I looked back, I saw my soon-to-be mother-in-law following about three steps behind me, picking up sock fuzz from the carpet. I felt so embarrassed—I was trying to be polite and she was making a point of cleaning up after me. I hid in the bedroom, pretending to be ‘settling in’ and begged my husband to bring the bags in so I could also ‘unpack.’ I felt self-conscious for the rest of the weekend and figured him mom had me pegged as a terrible slob.”
—Angela, 35, San Francisco, CA

Amy Keyishian has written for Cosmopolitan, Maxim, and other publications.
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