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Do's and don'ts when meeting future in-laws

By Zenoyise Madikwa | Sep 28, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

THE festive season will soon be on us. It is that time of the year when most people meet their significant other's families or their in-laws to be.

THE festive season will soon be on us. It is that time of the year when most people meet their significant other's families or their in-laws to be.

Whether they come to visit you or you go to visit them, meeting your future in-laws for the first time can be unsettling.

While you feel flattered that your man (or woman) will introduce you to their parents, which could be a sign of seriousness, you can't help but be stressed at the thought.

You might wonder what to wear, what they look like, how to introduce yourself, what to say and how they'll treat you. The following tips should help you.

l Whether you are a man or a woman, you should bring a small gift. It can be a tea set, a gift voucher or a perfume, depending on the kind of in-laws you have.

This will give the impression that you're sincere about taking a role in the family.

l Do dress appropriately. If your future in-laws live in a shack in Soweto, don't turn up in a suit and high heels. They will see you as an outsider and try to oust you immediately.

lDon't have too much to drink. You might be nervous, but keep an eye on how quickly those beers or glasses of wine are going down.

l Do make sure you've done your groundwork. What are their likes and dislikes? For example, if your intended's parents are coming over for a meal, make sure you know if they have any allergies before making your mogodu and mngqusho.

l Don't make negative comments about, or argue with, your partner in front of his or her parents. Make sure you present a united front and defend each other.

For example, if your grandmother makes a nasty remark about your fiancée's appearance or tribal background help smooth things over so her feelings aren't hurt.

l Don't refer to sleeping with your future father-in-law's daughter. She is still and always will be his little girl.

lDo be careful with their beloved possessions, including their pets.

l Don't assume you'll sleep in the same bedroom - as some parents might not feel comfortable with your "modern ways".

l But if you do sleep in the same room make sure one of you doesn't sleep on the floor and get caught in the morning. This will make your "platonic" relationship look like a sham.

l Do compliment your future in-laws' home or garden and pay special attention to items they mention to you that will be of particular pride to them.

A little consideration goes a long way to making a good impression. You know the basics.

l Say please and thank you.

l Use good toilet manners. Don't make any strange noises, put the seat down and use the toilet spray.

l Your in-laws will want to know everything about you. Look them in the eye when you are talking to them. They might ask you sensitive questions so be ready to answer tough questions.

l Don't lie to them because lies have a way of coming back at a later date when you have forgotten what you said but the lies are still fresh in their memories.

Talk about yourself but don't brag about your accomplishments. Tell them about your family, your job, and what your plans are for the future. Tell them what you love about your spouse and why you asked your fiancéeto marry you.

l Finally, if in your culture you need to be circumcised to be called a man, don't ask your brother-in-law to be if he is circumcised.

It is none of your business.

lAdditional info from www.


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