How To Impress Your Boyfriend’s Parents: 19 Tips To Win Them Over

If you want a relationship to last, it can be helpful if your boyfriend’s parents like you. If you’re both still underage, it can make or break your relationship. If you’re over 18 and both of you have moved out, you still don’t want the conflict that goes hand in hand with bitter in-laws that think their son could have done better. 

A Complete Guide To Winning Over Your Boyfriend’s Parents

It can instantly give you a touch of anxiety when you find out it’s time for you to meet the parents. It doesn’t have to. If you follow these tips and tricks, they are instantly going to fall in love with you. 

Keep in mind that you don’t want to be completely fake. You simply want to be the best version of yourself because you’re going to need to maintain it throughout your relationship.

1. Look for things in common with your boyfriend’s mother

I make an extra effort to get along with his mom. You always want to stay on her good side. If you don’t, she’s the one that will be making snarky comments on your wedding day. You just don’t want his family to have a negative impression of you.

2. Don’t wear sexy clothes

You need to dress conservatively. That means no cleavage or skirts that you have to pull down. Consider pants and a nice blouse if you’re not sure. You can never go wrong with that outfit. 

If you don’t feel confident wearing pants and a nice blouse, try layering. You can wear leggings or biker shorts under a dress or skirt. A cami is always a great option for low-cut shirts or dresses. You’ll be able to dress appropriately without feeling self-conscious.

3. Get your boyfriend’s opinion

He knows his family better than you. Because of that, try on the outfit for him. He’ll easily be able to tell you if they will approve. If not, it’s on to the next outfit.

4. Ask him about his parents

Before you meet his parents, ask him what they’re like. If your boyfriend’s mother is traditional, you need to know that. At the same time, if your boyfriend’s family is comprised of laid-back jokesters, that’s also important to know. You can make a better impression if you ask your boyfriend before the meet and greet.

5. Avoid involving them in arguments

To make a great impression, you want to be the best girlfriend for their son. That’s not going to happen if your boyfriend is calling his mother every time there’s conflict. It will make it worse if you chime in your two cents. Instead, keep the disagreements between yourselves. 

If something does happen when you’re at their house, brush it off. No mother wants to see someone being rude to her son, even if your boyfriend is in the wrong.

6. Punctuality is important

punctuality is important

Some people don’t mind if you’re late. Others view it as being inconsiderate. Instead of taking a chance, make sure that you and your boyfriend arrive on time. Leave earlier than you normally would. If you are going to be late, make sure that you text them out of consideration to impress them. Chances are at least one of his parents will instantly have a positive impression of you.

7. Compliment his mother

Compliments are always nice. If you compliment everyone, it will seem fake. Because of that, you just have to make sure that you compliment his mother. Out of everyone in the guy’s family, your boyfriend’s mom is the one that you really want to like. 

Most men are closer to their mothers, and a mother is always protective of her son. That’s why they might butt into the relationship more than you would like.

8. Be polite

When you first meet his parents, call them sir and ma’am unless they tell you otherwise. Usually, when I meet people, I do this. Then, they’ll say something along the lines of “please, call me Jenny.” 

I try to smile more when I meet people. This is another thing that some people simply consider nice. I have a horrible resting bitch face. I don’t mean to do it, but it’s there. Because of that, people instantly assume I’m mad or stressed. It makes smiling when I meet people necessary to make a good impression. 

Smiling can also benefit you if you don’t instantly look angry. It sends the message that you’re happy to be there. A quick grin can instantly put his parents at ease. 

I always say please and thank you, too. When I walk past someone, I say excuse me. It’s important that they view you as respectful. One thing every boyfriend’s parents have loved about me is that I have manners. 

I limit affection around his family. I am not huge on public displays of affection. A quick kiss, holding hands, or his arm around me are my limits. I view anything else as being slightly rude. Personally, I think it can make other people feel uncomfortable. I’m there to spend time with his family, not make out with my boyfriend.

9. Make sure that you attend holiday gatherings

One boyfriend I will never forget is the one that did not attend holidays. My family consistently asked me if he was still my boyfriend. They couldn’t wrap their head around him not coming to Christmas dinner. It was also viewed as him not being respectful. I was embarrassed. 

Instead, make sure that you show up if you’re invited. This is polite. It shows that you value your relationship with your boyfriend as well as his family. If you want to impress his family, don’t blow them off when they reach out to you. They more than likely will because you’re with their son.

10. Help out with holiday gatherings

Another thing I always do is actually participate in family events. You don’t just want to show up and smile. Sitting in the corner and talking to your boyfriend is not an option either. 

Instead, I volunteer to help cook. While I’m at it, I’ll figure out my boyfriend’s mom’s recipes that he loves to surprise him later. Your boyfriend’s mother will know all of his favorite foods. After all, it’s her son.

I offer to help out my boyfriend’s family during the holidays. Maybe we’ll all decorate a tree together or wrap presents together. Whatever they do as a family, you’ll be included alongside your boyfriend.

11. Offer assistance in general

Offering to help isn’t just a sign of respect during the holidays, it’s always a great idea. Get up to help your boyfriend’s mom clear the table after dinner or do the dishes. If you have children, always pick up after them. Ask to help them with a family project they are working on. 

This is both nice and your boyfriend’s family will love it. It shows that you want something to do with them. You aren’t just making an appearance because your boyfriend is there. When you actually like your boyfriend’s family, they can tell and will make an effort to like you back.

12. Focus on having a healthy relationship

focus on having a healthy relationship

I barely met my most recent ex-boyfriend’s family before we were dating. In fact, it was months before I met his mother and father. They already loved me because their son had told them so much about me as a girlfriend, and our relationship. When you take the time to focus on having a healthy relationship with your boyfriend, it will show. 

Every partnership will have its ups and downs, though. I always made sure that relationship arguments did not happen in front of his parents. They didn’t happen in front of my family either. Your boyfriend’s family will instantly take his side. In particular, your boyfriend’s mom will be more likely to take his side. That means that she’ll be against you. Don’t put yourself in that position. Encourage your man to do the same, especially during the early stages of dating.

13. Get to know them better

It’s helpful to ask your boyfriend about his parents, but don’t rely on him for information the entire time you’re dating him. Instead, get to know the guy’s family by talking to them. I make it a point to talk to my boyfriend’s mom and father. 

If you know that they are interested in a particular hobby, ask them about it. A question like “So, I heard you have your own business…” is a great conversation starter. You could also ask about how they met each other. 

You don’t just want to get to know his parents. Take the time to get to know his entire family. If he still has siblings that live at home with his parents, always be nice to them. Get to know them too. Watching you mingle with the entire family is sure to impress your boyfriend’s parents. 

When getting to know them, ask open-ended questions. Open-ended questions are ones that cannot be answered with a yes or no answer. For example, asking someone if they have ever been to Hawaii can be answered with a simple yes or no. 

However, asking them where they like to travel cannot be answered with a yes or no. These types of questions encourage the other person to open up so that you can truly get to know them.

14. Try not to discuss controversial topics

If his dad is passionate about politics, politely change the subject. Other topics to avoid include gun control, people’s rights, abortion, and religion. For some people, these are instant hot buttons. If you feel strongly but share the opposite opinion, you can accidentally walk into a heated debate with his parents. That is not the way to impress them.

15. Respect their beliefs and traditions

For example, if your boyfriend’s family only listens to religious music, do not play rap while you’re helping them cook Thanksgiving dinner. This also applies to things like birthdays, holidays, and generally how they feel about things. I’ve always done this because I was always taught to be respectful in other people’s homes, and I’ve never had a boyfriend’s family that didn’t like me.

16. Don’t get involved with arguments between him and his family

I feel protective over people that I love, so this one has always been a bit of a struggle for me. However, it’s possible. When he’s arguing with his family, walk away. Play on your phone. Do whatever you can to not get involved. 

Just like you don’t want his family to get in the middle of your arguments with your man, they don’t want their son’s girlfriend to get in the middle of disagreements. If you do, it’s not going to turn out well. Even though you’re taking your boyfriend’s side, his family might feel like you’re against them. That is not going to impress your boyfriend’s family. It will only push them away.

17. Put your phone away

One of everyone’s biggest pet peeves is when someone would clearly rather be on their phone instead of present at the moment. I put my phone on vibrate in case one of my kids calls. I also check it when it goes off. Then, I don’t answer it unless it’s one of my children. All the people in your inbox can wait until you get home. 

Not only is this some people’s pet peeve, but it’s also considered flat-out rude. It can give the impression that you don’t care to get to know them. Most people are going to think you don’t want to be there. This will instantly make them less likely to like you.

18. Don’t act like you know everything

punctuality is important

His parents will not like you if they view you as the son’s girlfriend that thought you knew him better than they did. Don’t answer questions for him. Avoid telling them his new likes and dislikes. If they tell a funny story about him, listen to it attentively without interrupting. 

You should apply this rule of conversation to other topics too. If you and his mother both love crafting, try not to correct her or tell her a better way to do things. Granted, you’re probably just trying to help, but it’s best to leave it alone. Instead, focus more on listening instead of talking.

19. Don’t drink

It’s best to just avoid drinking at all for the first meeting. This can be tough on the holidays, or if you’re invited over for New Year’s Eve. There are so many things that can go wrong. You could accidentally have too much to drink and wind up dancing on a table awkwardly before falling out to the car. 

You could say so many things that you don’t mean. Most of us get at least a little bolder when we’re drinking, and you don’t want to say anything that comes to mind during your first meeting. I politely decline a drink and stick with non-alcoholic options. 


How do you get your boyfriend's parents to like you?

Be nice to them. Always respect their rules. Try to find common interests to talk about. When picking an outfit, make sure that you dress conservatively. Be kind to the entire family, not just his mom or his favorites in the family. Accept invitations to hang out

How do I act around my boyfriend’s parents?

I always smile a lot because it makes me seem nicer. Sit with my legs crossed. On top of that, I laugh at jokes and try to stay engaged in the conversation. Being nice and respectful will go a long way as well. Put away your phone and try to enjoy time with them, too. 

What do you say when you meet your boyfriend's parents?

Tell them that it’s a pleasure to meet them. Offer a handshake or a hug. Refer to them as sir or ma’am. You can also call the Mister (insert his last name) and Mrs. Make sure that you are polite and well mannered. Compliment his mom on something, even if it’s just her hairstyle. 

How do you know if your boyfriend's parents like you?

They will talk to you more. Most of the time, you can tell that they don’t like you because you’ll be excluded. If his family welcomes you with open arms, they talk to you and they invite you to things, it means that they like you. 

How do I apologize to my boyfriend’s mom?

When apologizing, you need to accept responsibility for your actions. Tell her that you know what you did was wrong and that you’re sorry. Don’t blame it on anyone or anything else. Then, tell her that you’d like to do better moving forward and would love to have a relationship with her. 


Meeting your boyfriend’s parents can be horrifying. It can be embarrassing. However, you can make a wonderful, lasting impression that will instantly make them like you. How did you win over your boyfriend’s parents?

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