4 Signs You Should Bring Your SO Home For Thanksgiving, Because It's Much Ado About Stuffing

Along with making it official, uttering those three little words for the first time, and moving in together, meeting the parents can be undoubtedly one of the major milestones in a relationship. In a serious relationship, it’s essentially inevitable — the only question is when to make that happen. Should you bring your SO home for Thanksgiving? For some couples, it makes total sense. After all, your whole family is gathered in one place and they’re typically in a good mood, thus making them especially welcoming. Deciding whether it's the right time to have them spend the holiday with you and your fam, however, depends on a few different factors.

Of course, there’s your gut instinct to consider. Does it feel like the right time? Are you genuinely excited to introduce bae to all of your eccentric relatives, or do you still have some insecurities that you’ll be judged? And then, of course, there are practical elements to take into account. If bringing your SO home for Thanksgiving is going to be a financial burden on either or both of you due to travel costs, then it may ultimately not be worth the extra stress.

Still, having your partner spend Turkey Day with you and your family obviously comes with plenty of perks. Namely, you get to celebrate the holiday with all of your favorites in one place — and what could be better than that? Fortunately, there are ways to assess whether it’s a good idea. According to Dr. Gary Brown, a prominent relationship expert in Los Angeles, here are some signs that suggest it’s the right time to bring your boo home to meet the family.

It’s become serious.

If you’re wondering whether your partner should spend the holiday with your family, it’s time to take an honest look at what stage your relationship is in.

Dr. Brown says it’s worth considering if you have been together for a substantial amount of time, and are on the same page about where this relationship is headed.

“If you are already making actual plans for the future (e.g. moving in, talking about marriage), that’s a good sign," he adds.

Think of it this way: Why would you want to incorporate someone into your inner circle at such a momentous time of the year if you don’t know whether they’ll be in your life six months down the road? If you haven’t already had “the talk” to define the relationship, you’ll likely want to open up that discussion before deciding whether it’s the right time to bring bae home.

They already met your parents, and it went well.

Whether bae met your parents over a long dinner at your apartment or quickly in passing at your graduation, if they’ve already crossed paths and it went smoothly, then Dr. Brown says you can confidently bring your SO home for Thanksgiving.

In fact, this is an ideal scenario. Your bae has already been introduced to your parents, who are arguably the most intimidating members of your family. Now, at the holiday dinner, they can take the next step and meet everyone else — siblings, cousins, etc. Meeting someone’s entire family all at once may be overwhelming, so bringing them home for Thanksgiving when they’ve at least met your parents can essentially ease them into it.

You've met their family already.

Maybe you already met bae’s parents at a summer barbecue, or maybe they invited you to an upcoming holiday party. Either way, if they feel comfortable including you in family gatherings, then that’s a good sign that you should do the same, according to Dr. Brown. And if meeting your SO's parents went well, there's a good chance that it'll be a positive experience when they meet yours.

Besides, if your boo hasn’t met your family yet but you see a future with them, it’s going to have to happen eventually, right? And since it’s inevitable, why not use this festive occasion as an opportunity to see whether they fit in?

Whether or not you’ve actually been introduced to your SO’s family yet, if they seem eager for you to meet them, that means they’re likely feeling confident about your relationship and where it’s headed. So if you feel the same way, then Thanksgiving is a great time to bring them home.

You're dreading the time apart.

Does the thought of being without bae on Turkey Day majorly bum you out? That’s a feeling worth considering.

“If you will miss them very much if you spend the holiday apart, that’s a sign you should bring your SO home for Thanksgiving,” says Dr. Brown.

It makes sense, too. What makes the holidays memorable is having your loved ones around you. And if things have progressed with your boo and they play an important role in your life, you’ll obviously want to spend this celebratory occasion with them.

Thanksgiving is a holiday that centers around gratitude. So take a moment to think about the things that you’re most thankful for in your life. Does bae make the list? If so, then there’s a good chance that you’ll be glad you brought them home for Thanksgiving. Letting them in on your family traditions and observing how they interact with your loved ones will not only surely bring you closer, but also provide some valuable insight into your relationship potential. Besides, what could be better than snuggling up for a post-feast nap after crushing your aunt’s famous pecan pie? Ultimately, you’ll need to listen to your gut instinct on whether it’s the right time to invite your SO to your holiday dinner. But if any of these signs sound familiar, it’s a pretty safe bet that the timing is right.