So you've been speaking to someone on muzmatch for a few weeks, maybe met up for a halal date or two and you might be thinking it's time to get the parents involved. Meeting the parents can be a nerve wracking experience, especially when you know they might very soon become your future in-laws! Navigating through halal dating is hard enough but adding parents in the mix definitely makes it even harder.
If you've been chatting to someone and you really think they might be the one you want to marry, it's better to get the parents involved as quickly as possible. Arrange a meeting with each other's parents at least within the first few months of getting to know each other. You can make sure that everyone's on the same page before things escalate and you get too attached only to find out you and his family don't get along (although this isn't necessarily a deal breaker!) But also it'll make them feel involved, and like they've been given importance in the decision which chances are is all they really want you know?
Cultural differences within a marriage can be a beautiful thing; just read this muzmatch success story of an Indonesian woman and Russian man's journey if you need proof. Yet, this doesn't mean you should be ignorant about your partner's culture when meeting their parents. Each culture has its nuances. From South Asians to Arabs to British, each family will have their own set of traditions and customs that they follow. Make sure you ask your partner or have a quick google of typical things that you should expect so that you don't end up like this guy.
While you should be yourself and stay true to who you are, you need to still make an effort. I'd love to show up everywhere wearing leggings and a baggy jumper but in some situations it's just not appropriate in some situations, especially when meeting the parents. Something smart casual is always a safe bet, but it's also a good idea to ask your partner what type of things their parents tend to wear and then just go off that. And remember, modesty always goes a long way.
Bring a gift, compliment their home, ask if you can help out with anything. These may sound like common sense things but it can be easy to forget when you're already super nervous. Also don't have your phone out at the dinner table or talk over the family. Remember to be respectful and really listen to what they have to say. It's all about getting to know them after all, and them getting to know you!
Your partner is going to be your most important source of information when meeting their parents. Because, well, no one knows them better than their own child. So do your homework and find out if his mum likes flowers or chocolates, what does his dad like to talk about, are their any no-go topics like certain family issues. Finding out these things can really make your life easier and make the meeting go much smoother.
At the end of the day, they love their son/daughter and will most likely be happy with whoever makes their child happy. So even though it can be a really scary experience, just remember that and you'll be fine! Now it's time to read here to find out how to become nikkah ready inside out!