The holidays are a joyful time to spend together with your friends and family. If you’ve spent the last few holiday seasons as a single person, that joy is multiplied when you get to look forward to spending this year with your new partner. However, spending the holidays together can bring up some unexpected tensions as well as new reasons for happiness. All firsts in a relationship come with challenges, even more so when families and traditions are involved. But don’t worry! We have some tips from an experienced matchmaker to help you through the upcoming holiday season.
Gift-Giving Ground Rules
Everyone has a different approach when it comes to gift-giving. To avoid unnecessary tension, have a conversation with your partner about your expectations, both as a giver and receiver. Ask questions, even if they seem silly. Do you like surprises, or should your partner choose from a list? Are you going to set a price cap for gifts? Should you get gifts for each other’s families? Get all of these questions answered now so you can enjoy giving each other gifts rather than stressing about it on the day.
Honor Family Traditions and Start Your Own
Holidays come with family traditions from both sides. As individuals, you want to honor your family traditions, but you also want to start your own as a couple. Make some time to sit down and share your family traditions with each other, especially the traditions that are especially important to you. Decide as best you can—you’ll also have to take family dynamics into account—which family traditions you’ll do this year and which you’ll skip so you can start your own. Ensure to make time to visit with each other’s family and friends, too. Spending time with loved ones is an essential part of the holidays.
Don’t Forget to Have Fun!
It’s easy to get caught up in the planning, traveling, and family dynamics and forget that the holidays are supposed to be fun! Do your best to set a day aside to spend time together doing nothing in particular. For example, you could decide to forgo Black Friday shopping and spend the day sharing your favorite holiday movies. If Christmas Day is hectic with family activities, set aside Christmas Eve as a day to exchange gifts and have an intimate meal with just the two of you. No matter how busy your holiday season is, you’ll be glad you set aside the time to be together.
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