We’ve all been there. That first time we bring our significant other home to meet the family can be a nerve-wracking experience. But getting past the initial intro isn’t the hardest part – it’s making sure your family stays in love (or in like…or simply tolerant) of the new addition.
One small thing – your crazy brother making an off-color joke, your mom letting something slip about your past relationship – can derail an otherwise on-track train.
Which brings me to Solange Knowles, the younger sister of Beyonce Knowles. Following one of fashion’s biggest nights, the annual Met Gala in New York City, Solange punched, kicked and screamed her way into a major altercation with Jay Z, who’s married to her sister. Seen on an elevator surveillance video leaked from an afterparty at the Standard Hotel, Solange went at Jay Z guns blazing.
Did he tell her she had too much to drink? Did he compliment Beyonce but not Solange? Did he do anything to provoke her? That answer remains to be seen. All we know for sure is that Beyonce left with Solange, not her hubs, and that Bey stood in that elevator between her husband and sister and appeared to do nothing while the two went head to head.
Critics jumped immediately on Queen Bey, but her decision to stay out of it could have been the best one she made. Taking sides and choosing a romantic partner over a family member can cause rifts that are impossible to mend. Here are three things to remember when your husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend brawls with someone in your family:
1. Stand back
At least during the initial blow-up. While it may kill you to watch two people you love fight, take some time to develop a plan of attack for smoothing things over – not breaking it up while it is happening. Unless, of course, there is bloodshed, in which case call the cops and a therapist for yourself. Booking a spa appointment after witnessing something like that usually helps too.
2. Keep your opinions to yourself.
This has never been more important than in this instance. No matter who you believe is wrong or who you believe is right, do not express your opinions to either side. Share them with your friends, with your cat, with the homeless person who camps out near your office. But do not share with either party or anyone close to either party. If the people fighting love you enough they will put their argument aside with time and move on, and when they do you don’t want to ignite a separate argument about what you told one about the other.
3. Validate each side.
Communicate to each person that you support them, love them, but you are going to stay out of it. Tell a white lie and let them know you have no opinion about who’s wrong or right, and the only opinion you have is that everyone should kiss and make-up – ASAP.