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First Meetings with Prospective In-Laws

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  1. If you're coming for a visit, bring a hostess gift.

    When we were dating, my husband-to-be beat my mother into submission with frequent gifts of elaborate desserts. Although she railed that the lemon meringue was runny, the Linzer tortes dry, and the seven-layer cakes a layer short, she ate every crumb. Afterward, she was even civil to him. This was a major accomplishment, because she was trying to staple my feet to the carpet so I would live with her forever.

  2. Don't Go There

    When in doubt, avoid these three topics: Sex, politics, and religion.

  3. Treat the siblings well. Hey, you never know.

    Before he dated Diana, Prince Charles dallied with her older sister. Shy Di was the little kid hiding behind the 12th-century armor while Chuck was making time with Lady Sarah. But when the smoke cleared, it was the little sister who got the nod and became the Princess.

  4. Don't share your favorite pick-up lines with your girlfriend's father or brother or boyfriend's mother or sister.

    Resist the urge to share even the good lines like "Hi, the voices in my head told me to come talk to you" and "Yo. You'll do."

  5. Wear your Scout uniform.

    Flashing your honor society pin is going a little too far, however.

  6. Avoid controversial topics.

    This is not the time to debate the issue of land mines in Bosnia, the situation on the West Bank, or the relative merits of "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter."



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Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Dealing with In-Laws © 1998 by Laurie E. Rozakis, Ph.D. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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