Parenting is not for the faint of heart, and smiling and trying to act like you’re not ready to cut a person who is responsible not only for your child’s intimate safety, but for their emotional safety, is one of the hardest things (I imagine).
That’s what we do when they bring home someone new, though – we grin, say nice to meet you, size them up, and hope for the best.
If you, like me, haven’t reached this stage yet, you might wonder how easy or hard it is to assess these strangers as they come into your life.
Luckily, we have Reddit, and these parents are willing to share.
15. Trying and achieving are two different things.
My daughter(13) wanted me to meet her first “real” boyfriend.
I was nice and pleasant, but I knew it wouldn’t last cause he was all looks and no brains.
Of course, as jr high relationships go, it was about a 2 month ordeal.
I think all parents should try and be cordial, unless the person feels like a serial killer or something.
14. This is an amazing move.
My daughter just started dating.
She was mortified when I picked them up and asked if everything was Gucci.
13. Bottom line, sometimes you have to give it time.
When my oldest daughter introduced her first serious boyfriend, he was an awkward kind of guy, was pretty unremarkable, but he got super animated about topics that interested him. I had a chat with him about my daughter… he got animated. They’ve been married for 9 years. Good guy, works hard, is a staunch advocate for his wife, and I love his smile when he looks at their kids.
My oldest son’s first girlfriend was… not an emotional investment he was willing to make. she was pretty, but that was it. I scolded him, he got defensive, almost married her, but she made the mistake of asking my son about my money…. About a year later he brought home a beautiful, talented woman with an electric personality and more self confidence than even my cocksure eldest, and I was never more proud of him than when he took that dive. Their kids are incredible… great couple.
My second daughter just introduced us to a college friend of hers. He seems like a decent person. He’s young, but he’s got a head on his shoulders and seems able to conduct himself politely. I’ll need more time to figure it out.
My youngest son had a high school sweetheart girlfriend that’s now his college girlfriend. When I first met her she was 9, so I’m pretty enamored with her. Her parents have babysat and house sat for us, and they’re all good people.
My youngest daughter has introduced me to a girlfriend from her trade school recently. Pretty sure she has been dating her for a couple years. She’s angry, contrary, and bitter. Under all that baggage it’s hard to tell, but I’m hoping that my home can be a place where she can just let whatever angers her so much disappear for a while and I can find out who she actually is. I’ve asked a good friend of my daughter’s if there’s ever been any signs of violence, as that’s my only real concern, but so far it seems fine on that front. My youngest has always been a bit more subdued and contemplative than my others, so I’m hoping that whatever bitterness is in her girlfriend’s life doesn’t hurt her. This relationship is the most concerning one to me, because my daughter is a very sensitive person, and I fear for her happy, cheerful spirit.
Edit: thanks for the silver and gold, kind strangers 🙂
12. Make sure you’re emotionally prepared for this one.
This is a tough subject. My daughters started dating a guy when she turned 17. He said he had two jobs. He said he came from a rough childhood so he didn’t like to talk about his family. He told us they were refugees from Haiti who moved to the us to better their lives. He said his family one day just decided to move from our state to the other side of the country. We all would ask questions but he would just shut up. It was troubling but he was polite, seemed kind. He called me mom he was visiting everyday. Then my daughter turned 18 and they moved in together. I felt it was too soon but she thought she was in love.
He was still his nice quiet self in front of our family. My daughter began telling me he didn’t want to cook or clean and just wanted to play PS4 while she worked full time. I told her to keep talking to him about how she was becoming unhappy. He would make her promises but continue to do what he was doing. She worked graveyards so he would say he worked during the day and she’d believe him. She had a puppy who he agreed to look after and clean up for as a shared responsibility. He wasn’t doing this at night when she was at work or when he was off.
She had an opportunity to go to Disneyland for a week as a babysitter for her little cousins. After making sure her he was ok with it she went. She got home a day early to surprise her dog on his birthday. She found him lethargic with no food or water and no ac on In the hot az weather. She broke up with her boyfriend then and there. She said her dog was like her son and she wasn’t going to stand for that type of neglect.
I picked her up and her ex-boyfriend followed her out. He was polite telling me to not let her leave him I told him to give it a few days. After we left I could tell her voice was hoarse she said they had a loud argument.
The next morning she asked her dad and I to take her back to her apartment so they could talk, she could get some of her stuff and leave on good terms with him. I asked if we could go in with her she said”no mom I’m an adult i got this”. I jokingly asked if she was going to take her dog to protect her. She said ‘no as long as he’s with you I know he will be well taken care of”. Her words made me joke with her and ask if she was going to run away or something she just laughed and called me silly.
She kept in contact with me and at noonish asked me to get her. We went and there was no answer. It sounded like the apartment was empty. We called the cops they did a wellness check 5 hours later after we begged and begged. We had searched everywhere and called everyone she knew but they both had disappeared.
We kept going back to the apartment hoping wherever they went they had come back but still nothing. A neighbor brought me a chair to sit to wait outside the apartment until she came. I sat staring at one point on the wall as long as I sat there. I had a fear so primal and deep it slowed down my thought process. Another neighbor came to me and said she heard we were looking for my daughter. What she said next made my blood run cold. She said “I saw your daughter around 1230 or 1 her boyfriend was kicking her and dragging her by the hair into the apartment.”
I called 911 again because I knew whatever we found in the apartment was not something we would want to see. The 911 operator didn’t believe me even after I let her talk to the neighbor.
We broke the window and i climbed in. I found my precious beautiful sweet amazing loving daughter surrounded in blood. She had been strangled and stabbed in the throat.
The spot where I had been staring all day was the spot my daughter was killed at on the other side of the wall. He had killed her before we got there and she bled out in minutes.
The kind guy who called me mom was really a monster underneath it all. He has no remorse. I was in disbelief and felt a misunderstanding had happened. I went and saw him once he turned himself in two days later. He said he did it because he couldn’t live without her.
Never let your loved ones be alone when they are breaking up or going to meet someone they just broke up. Learn from the biggest mistake of my life. I’d do anything to rewind time and save my daughter.
((For the ones doubting my credibility here are some links. I wish this wasn’t my reality. I wish my daughter was alive))
11. Just be yourself.
It’s about respect, if she treats him right, and compatibility.
On the other end, not her dad, but my girlfriend’s roommate is this old grizzled marine dude.
She told me that he liked me because I didn’t try to get him to like, which apparently most people do. I was just myself and acted naturally, which he appreciated. Just be yourself and the people that will like you will like you, and the people who won’t won’t.
But always be respectful.
10. Well, it’s still adorable at that point no matter what.
My 4yo daughter introduced me to the 5yo neighbour kid as a bf, she told me he’s really good at running fast and he appreciates snails as much as she does.
Needless to say, this is a keeper.
9. I guess you should have brought a boy home.
Not a parent, but this was my experience with my mother when I was a teen.
So, as a teen, my mother pulled me to the side and gave me the “gay talk”. You know, the “I’ll still love you even if you were gay” talk.
I asked her why she thought I was gay and she said it was because I never bring any girls to the house.
Guess what I did within the next few days? I brought a girl in the house.
Guess what my mother did? She kicked her out and gave me a lecture on how inappropriate it was to bring girls to the house.
Yes, it makes no sense.
8. So you’re saying she was right.
My mother-in-law assumed I was some sort of player when I first met her before my first date with my wife. Even told my wife that she assumed I went on lots of dates back at school.
Joke’s on her. I spent the entirety of my freshman year (year before I met my wife) enjoying the sweet, sweet internet speed of my dorm room and playing the shit out of Halo 3, Mass Effect 1 & 2, picking up drunk dorm-mates from house parties at 3am, and going on exactly 0 dates.
After years of getting to know my MIL, she just didn’t want her daughter to get into a long-distance relationship, then end up moving out of state with me if we got married and I was still there (which ended up happening. Whoops).
7. Parents just know.
I have always instinctively known within seconds of meeting them.
I’ve liked all but one of my son’s partners, and the one I didn’t feel right about was the one who screwed him up.
6. Sisters, too.
Not a mother but I’m a sister to a lovely brother.
He had brought some girls in house in his teenage years, and instantly I would know if I liked them or not. The first one he brought, was super rude with me and my parents. She would eat alone in the bedroom when we are having dinner, force my brother to be mean to me, etc. Few months after the relationship ended in a really bad way. After that brought some girls, didn’t talk so much with them but they were nice and sweet (didn’t last long, less than two months). The last one he brought, when I talked to her, just one thought came to mind “she’s the one”.
Five or six years later, here they are, living together.
5. Seems simple enough.
Met my daughters boyfriend the other day.
First boyfriend. She’s 17. He’s 18. I must admit I was a bit nervous and I remember very well being 18 and what I was thinking/wanting, but had a word with my self to be welcoming and warm and to treat him as an equal, my daughters friend and therefor my friend. Anyway he’s a nice young man so it’s all good. But I to answer your question I guess if he’s nice I’ll like him if he’s a dick i wont.
Either way as far as my daughter is concerned I’ll like him.
4. And you know he understands homework.
When they interact and help out the rest of the family.
When my daughter didn’t understand her homework and then her sisters boyfriend helped her it showed how much he actually cared.
3. You can always kick them out later.
My mother has always been accepting of everyone I’ve ever dated, but realistic about their faults.
My family immediately welcomes them with open arms, but just warns me if they seem “off” for whatever reason. I think it’s a decent system.
2. From the other side of the lens…
I’m not a parent but my gf’s father hates me for some reason, it’s been 1 1/2 years already, it’s gotten better since then tho but still
1. Don’t give me a reason not to.
Not a parent so I called my mom.
She stated and I quote:
“I like all of them until they give me reason not to. Then I never tell you whether I like them or not, so I don’t influence your own judgement. I cannot choose for you, although sometimes I wish I could.”
I can’t say I’m looking forward to this stage of life, but it’s headed my way, regardless!
How do you make up your mind on boyfriends and girlfriends? Share your tips in the comments!