First Christmas with a new family

I am going to my new partner’s family get together for the first time this Christmas. (or I am going to Christmas at a friend’s place and I don’t know anyone)

This can be a nerve-wracking experience for even the most self-assured.  Before the big event do your homework.  Ask you partner about his/her family’s Christmas traditions?  Do they drink? Do they give presents (will you need to bring gifts for every cousin and aunt)?  Regardless of how well prepared you are there are always going to be a few left fielders coming your way, so:

  • take the day in its stride
  • bring a present for the host (alcohol, chocolates, flowers, a plant for example)
  • don’t get involved in family arguments
  • don’t get horribly drunk (unless everyone else does – in which case go nuts)
  • don’t take huge serves of food (you can always go back for seconds)
  • be on your best behaviour
  • don’t talk politics or religion
  • introduce yourself to everyone
  • have a great day