The holidays are a time for family and friends to gather together for fun and celebration. Maybe you’re heading to an office Christmas party. Or, perhaps you’re going to a family get-together at your parents’ house.

Whatever the case, you probably want to share that feeling of family and togetherness with the woman you’re in a relationship with.

The holidays are a great time to introduce your new partner to your family. But, for someone in a queer relationship, it might not always seem that easy.

You might feel nervous about how people will react or about how your partner might feel. So, how can you navigate the holidays in a lesbian relationship and introduce your partner to the other people you love?

Talk to Your Family First

It’s usually not a good idea in any relationship (even straight ones) to “ambush” your family with the surprise of someone new. Especially during the holidays. 

People tend to have specific traditions and ideals in place around special occasions and the holidays. Bringing someone new into the picture unannounced is likely to make some folks feel uncomfortable. And sadly, it could start the festivities off on the wrong foot.

That problem can be an even bigger deal when you’re in a lesbian relationship and you’re not sure how your whole family will react.

The best thing you can do is to talk to them about it ahead of time. 

Let your family members know you’ll be bringing your partner along for the festivities. That way, they’ll a chance to get used to the idea. So, when the time comes, they can be fully prepared and be the best hosts possible.

When you tell them about your partner, let them know some of the things you really like about her. Mention some of her positive characteristics and traits.

That said, if there are any family members you haven’t yet come out to, now might be the time.

Talk To Your Partner Ahead Of Time

It’s also important to talk to your partner before introducing her to your family. 

Even if your family is incredibly supportive and open, think about it from her perspective. She’ll be walking into a completely new environment with people she don’t know, and traditions she’s never experienced. It could be a lot to handle.

Ask your partner ahead of time about her concerns or what she expects from your family. Do your best to reassure her. Let her know that you’ll have her back.

Also, don’t be afraid to express any of your fears. It’ll be best for you two to walk in as a team. So being as open and honest about your feelings and anticipations will help you both.

It’s Okay to Escape

Things don’t always work out the way you might envision them or hope they will. That isn’t necessarily any one person’s fault. But, it would be a good idea to have an exit strategy in case things do go poorly.

It could be that a family member says something that makes you or your partner uncomfortable. Or, perhaps it’s something as innocent as your partner feeling overwhelmed by meeting everyone.

No matter what arises, it’s a good idea to have an escape planned out ahead of time. Or at least an agreement to press the pause button and take a breather if needed. You can say you’re not feeling well. 

Remember to put your relationship first. Sometimes, leaving early from an uncomfortable family holiday is the best thing you can do for your relationship. Making sure you’re both committed to taking care of one another can take off a lot of the pressure to make the holidays perfect.

The best thing you can do this season if you want to introduce your partner to your family? 

Breathe. 

Make sure the lines of communication are open between everyone. You can usually get a feel for how people will act and how things will go before the event happens.

So, use your instincts and make sure to be there to support your partner. If you do that, your holiday introductions can lead to a lot of merry-making and adding to your family traditions for years to come.