I’m just going to come out and state the obvious: meeting someone’s parents is always nerve-wracking. You never know how free-spirited or judgmental they are going to be or whether you’ll have anything to talk about (cue being scared to ask for the potatoes during a silent dinner). So, when the time comes to meet the parents, you need a plan to win them over. To get inside the minds of guys I could see myself dating, I asked 10 of my matches for their best advice. They came back with some interesting (I think that’s the right word to use…) tips.

1. Be cool.

Apparently sweating is a complete turn-off? What if I have overactive sweat glands?

2. Zip it. 

You know when you do that thing where you talk too much and it’s awkward for everyone? I’m doing it now. Do you think they can hear me?

3. One word: manners.

You don’t necessarily need to know your fish fork from well, any other fork, but “please” and “thank you” go a long way.

4. Come bearing gifts.

Don’t bring a set of crystal champagne glasses, but if you know their parents’ favorite flower, that’s a nice touch. 

5. Talk to the wall. 

They don’t watch all that HGTV for nothing.

6. Get off your phone.

You can text your mom after to let her know how well it went. 

7. Crack a joke.

And leave the dad jokes to the parents, please.

8. Be real.

Parents have a sixth sense for B.S. Just ask my older sister.

9. Establish common ground.

Not all dads are into golf and not all moms love decor, but I like at least some of where this person’s head is at.

10. Be the boss?

Perhaps I shouldn’t listen to this particular nugget advice. Le sigh.