I know Indiana isn't Mars, but it might as well be.
November 10, 2008 10:09 AM Subscribe
I'm nervous about spending Thanksgiving weekend with my boyfriend's Midwestern family out-of-state in Indiana. They're flying both of us out for Thursday-Sunday, and I want to be sure to make a good impression. Advice?
Some basic background info:
Some basic background info:
- I've been dating this guy for a little over a year, and am completely crazy about him. We're both in our mid-twenties. He's a graduate student, I'm a librarian. We met online.
- His family consists of his two parents whose home we'll be staying in (the house my bf grew up in), as well as his older brother (early 30s, I believe) and his brother's girlfriend, who will be visiting from a neighboring state.
- I've met his parents once before, when they came out in March to visit for a few days for my bf's birthday. I've met his brother and his brother's gf once over a year ago when they came out to visit for a few days, but due to sleep-deprivation, raging wildfires in my area, smoke inhalation, and other extenuating circumstances, I didn't make a terribly good impression with them. -I'm vegetarian, and no one else in the family is. My boyfriend has said he doesn't think his mom has ever cooked for vegetarians before. When his parents came out to visit, I made a huge picnic for his birthday with a lot of different vegetarian dishes, and several weeks later his mom sent him a package in the mail with various sort of canned/dried meat products and a very long letter explaining how to cook each of them and expressing concerns about his diet. My boyfriend isn't vegetarian, but eats vegetarian when we cook together several times a week. Is it rude for me to offer to cook a dish or two over the weekend or suggest ways to make her recipes vegetarian? I'm a competent cook, but I know there's a fine line between being helpful in the kitchen and taking control of someone else's kitchen.
- His mom is paying for both of us to fly out, but expressed a concern that we need to stay in the city (Indianapolis) and an emphasis on "family time". What this means is unclear. I'd like to see a bit of the city, since I've never been to the area, but of course I'm fine with whatever they have planned. -His mom is generally very meddling and overbearing, but well-meaning enough. She's just a stay-at-home mom with too much time on her hands. As an example, she actually paid my boyfriend and I to clean his bedroom in his apartment a month or two ago. I guess she thought it was messy when she visited in March and had been thinking about it ever since, so she brought it up in a phone conversation in August. I'm expecting some personal conversations between himself and his parents regarding potentially awkward things like finances, which are things my family don't really discuss with one another. When his parents visited before, they started to urge him to contribute to an IRA and discussed financial details at length in front of me while we were all sitting in his apartment, while my boyfriend got annoyed and tried to change the subject. What should I do if this happens again? Sit quietly? Excuse myself politely? Offer advice?