If you’re anything like me, you keep your new man/woman far away from your family as long as possible. Back in my 20s, I would date for someone for a month or so before introducing them to at least my sister and her husband. Now, that I’m in my 30s I’m pretty sure I would be okay with my potential soulmate not meeting my family until our rehearsal dinner. Hey, if I’m happy they should just be happy for me, right?
Family and friends are really important. I’ve now learned that they are a good judge of character. Both of yours and your new friend’s. People around you can pick up on little things that you can’t… like:
– Do you act like yourself around this new love?
– Does this person bring out the best of your or the worst?
– Do they like this person as much as you do?
– Are they seeing any red flags with the way you interact together?
So, when my brother-in-law told me he had a “family blind dinner date” planned I lost my shit. What is a family blind dinner date you ask? It’s where my two brother-in-laws (who are best friends) find a guy they like and invite him over for family dinner on a Sunday afternoon. This dinner consists of the boys, my sisters and my niece and nephew. FAMILY BLIND DINNER DATE. WTF. OMG. No, this has never happened before, so I was a little nervous. I love my family, but together we are a HANDFUL. So, when I got a text message that in two weeks this event would be taking place several things were going thru my head…
1. What kind of guy would agree to this?
2. He must be insane.
3. No, seriously, why would someone agree to this? No, really… WHY?
Two different people wanted to set me up with this guy, so I was feeling good about it, but still what a crazy way to meet me! I was a little stressed the day of the date. My sisters normally don’t see me on dates so I was pretty sure they were going scrutinize what I was wearing, how I was acting, what I was saying, etc. So, on the day of the date I tried to play it cool. I wore jeans, booties and a blouse. Nothing fancy. We were having tacos and I have a drooly 16-month-old nephew so I wasn’t wearing my date best. I got there a half-hour early to help my sister get things ready. BD (blind date) showed up on time. He rings the doorbell and my brother-in-law who set this whole thing says, “hey! There’s Emily. The one you’re here to meet.”
Unfortunately, there was no hole for me to crawl into so I said hi, blushed, sweated thru my silk blouse and died a little. This was going to be a long night. How do you get to know someone when all of the adults there know this is a “date” and keep leaving the room, but the kids just see someone new and want to play with him? You improvise. At one point I had been drinking water to fill awkward pauses and was seriously going to pee my pants… it was just us and the kids. I asked if he was okay with them alone, put the baby on his lap and told him to not drop him and if he did to blame it on the 4-yr-old. Less the 5 minutes later the 3 of them are playing like they had just adopted a new uncle.
We ate dinner as a family, all chatted, had a few drinks, watched as the baby covered himself in beans and my niece devoured her dessert. It was actually all very normal and pretty stress free once we got through the weirdness.
A few hours later, he was getting ready to go. Everyone hugged, said this was fun, numbers were exchanged and I walked him to the door. I asked him why he would ever agree to this. His response, “It’s best to see what you’re getting yourself into as soon as possible. So far, so good.”
And everything is still so far, so good. Second date was obviously better than the first. Movie, a few drinks and dinner. It was a real date. It had been so long since I had gone on a real date I had forgotten how nice they can be when you actually enjoy the person you’re with. So, I’m back to thinking there is hope for me and men again… only time and a third date will tell.