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Because I Have Never Messed With Texas

By Amalah

Hi Amy! Welcome to my hell.
Hell consists of….
a. Spending your hard-earned Christmas vacay with your boyfriend’s never-before-met-family.
b. Being told that his best friend (Sara) is the “Gold Standard” of women that his mother measures all others against. That’s, no lie, a direct quote.
c. Having dinner with his ex-girlfriend and his best friend (who is also her new boyfriend) yeeeeeah, that one’s a little hard for me to follow too….
d. Doing this all in Dallas, TX with a family who (swear to God) does not drink. Who knew they still made those people?
e. All of the above.
So, my question, oh Advice Goddess Extraordinaire, is clothes related and multi-faceted.
1. What does one wear to meet a Judge? *Ahem*, I mean, his mother?
2. What is appropriate attire for the meeting of the ex-girlfriend? (No cat claws included, I promise.)
3. What the hell does a fun-lovin’ girl from Florida wear to meet a tee-totalling family in cold ole’ Texas?
Basically, I’m at a loss. Is a V-neck too revealing? What about *gasp* pantyhose?Are they required with a skirt? (Do people still wear those?) And, do people in cold states wear skimpy cute clothes to go out, or must I invest in frump-attire before hitting the club with his ex? (God this is SUCH a weird trip…)
Oh sweet baby Jesus please help.
Love from the sunshine state,

A few thoughts jumbled up in my head as I read your question(s).
1) Argh.
B) Helllll no.
Cheddar) It’s cold in Texas? Really? I had no idea. Do the tumbleweeds frost up and stuff?
Okay, so let’s break this all down.
First of all, what asshat told you that delightful direct quote from your boyfriend’s mother? Why in the world did they feel the need to dump THAT particular pile of meet-the-parents stress on you? Was it your boyfriend? Tell him to not tell you stuff like that ever again. Seriously. That was thoughtless and borderline mean.
Also, he has too many best friends for this advice columnist to keep track of.
I don’t know how long you’ll be visiting, but I know whenever Jason and I visit family for an extended period of time we ALWAYS come up with excuses to spend a little time away with just each other. We volunteer to go pick up fresh bagels for breakfast, and then we linger a little bit over coffee before going back. Mother-in-law can’t find her meat thermometer or forgot to buy rolls? We’ll go to the grocery store! No problem, it’s our pleasure. Even 10 minutes in the car alone together can be all the break you need sometimes.
At night, blame insomnia or the time zone and go out for a beer. Don’t sneak back home rip-roaring drunk or anything, but just give yourself a chance to decompress on neutral turf.
Oh, and have that dinner with the ex-girlfriend/best friend/love-triangle/headache out at a RESTAURANT. Again, I cannot overstate the benefit of neutral turf when it comes to situations like these. Go where you can have a glass of wine and offer to pick up the check. Restaurants are also great for imposing a bit of a time limit on your evening, eliminating the endless reminicising old friends tend to do in their own living rooms, completely forgetting about the new girlfriend who has NO IDEA WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT.
Yeah, I’ve been there. And no, I don’t want to talk about it anymore.
Anyway! Clothes!
I think you should wear whatever you’re most comfortable in — don’t bring some patterned snowflake sweater because you think it’s more appropriate. You’ll feel weird and fake and your fakey weirdness will be obvious. So if your current favorite top is a v-neck, wear that. Put a little camisole or tank underneath it if you’re worried about cleavage. Pantyhose is most definitely NOT required, although if it is really cold (and really! no idea that Texas was cold! you are blowing my mind here!), you might want to want to look into some tights and/or boots to cover up a little. (Although since you’re from Florida I’m guessing you don’t have the problem with winter-white goose-flesh that some of us have to deal with.)
It gets pretty cold around here, and I definitely don’t see many people wearing frumpwear to the clubs. (Not that I’m a big clubber anymore, but…um. Sometimes I still go outside! And I see people! People who are going to clubs!) Just layer up — sexy-yet-not-trampy top or a dress, paired with a cardigan at dinner, and find out if the club has a coat check if you need something even warmer.
Or whatever it is that people in Texas wear. Cowboy boots? Ten-gallon hats? Fringed leather vests with gold sheriff badges? Seriously, I have a LOT to learn about Texas.
(I better figure some stuff out before March, I guess. Yikes.)

Published December 1, 2006. Last updated December 1, 2006.
About the Author

Amy Corbett Storch


Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Ama...

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it’s pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to [email protected].

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

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