You are super excited that your girlfriend, friend, or crush has invited you over -- and suddenly the nervousness hits you. Whether meeting the family, just spending quality time together, or moving in for a longer period of time, the number one rule is to be honest, courteous, and respectful.

Method 1
Method 1 of 3:

Acting When You're Alone Together

  1. This is an especially good thing to do if you feel awkward or unsure what to do when you first arrive. Keep an eye out for decorations, old pictures, and music or book collections -- all excellent conversation starters and places to stop and chat.
  2. More often than not, she'll have some specific things she might want to show you or favorite activities around the house. If she invites you over, remember to be a good guest and let her be a good host. If things are shy or awkward, you can, of course, suggest things to do. But try and step back and let her take the lead, respecting her and her house, before blurting out the things you want to do.
    • Don't worry if there is some shy awkwardness early on -- this is normal! It will pass.
  3. Just because you're a guest doesn't mean you have to let her do all of the work. If she's got some chores to do, offer to lend a hand instead of flipping on the TV and zoning out until she's done. Think of it this way -- the faster chores are done, the sooner you can hang out.
    • Want to really impress her? Don't ask to help, just start pitching in -- tackling the dishes while she mops, grabbing clean towels, changing the laundry when it beeps, etc.
  4. Never assume that it is "no big deal" just because you might leave the toilet seat up at your house, don't use a coaster, or leave books out on the counter when you're done with them. Assume her level of cleanliness, not yours. The best approach is to return things to their condition when you arrived, allowing her to dictate what things are important and what things she doesn't mind you exploring or tampering with.
    • You don't have to act like you're in a museum! Just be courteous and don't leave a mess behind you.
    • Make sure you're not creating more work than when you started. If you don't know where the dishes go, don't just start sticking them places to get them out of the way.
  5. Just because a girl invites you over is not an invitation into her bed. This fact may seem obvious, but it can be confusing if you're visiting for the first time and are unsure what she wants to do. The best advice is to move slowly, escalating romance one step at a time (cuddling, kissing, making out, etc.) instead of just assuming you'll be going all the way once you walk in the door.
    • Like any other situation, you should always ask for consent before moving on romantically or sexually.
  6. If her parents or siblings are expected to walk through the door, make sure you both know in advance. Talk about whether they are okay with you being there, as well as the appropriate behavior when they arrive. You should know, for example, if her parents don't want you together in her room.
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Method 2
Method 2 of 3:

Acting Around Her Family

  1. You don't need an encyclopedia on the family, but you should know if there are any topics to avoid around the dinner table. Be inquisitive -- what do her parents do? what hobbies do they enjoy? are there any special circumstances to be aware of? Showing you care enough to ask questions will make everyone's experience much smoother.
    • Does she know any common ground you might have with her family or places where you might naturally find conversation?
    • Is there anything you can bring as a small "thank you" gift? While a bottle of wine is the classic choice, it won't go over well if they don't drink or you're a minor.
  2. Even if they refuse, it is the thought that counts. To be a truly considerate guest, just start helping clear the table once dinner is over, taking the initiative and showing your respect. While you aren't there to become a temporary handyman, just asking if you can lend a hand will go a long way.[1]
    • This is a great way to show her family that you're independent enough to stand on your own 2 feet, and that you're with your girlfriend for the right reason.
  3. It will look a little strange if you're suddenly distant with your girl. While you don't want to be lewd, holding her hand occasionally or putting an arm around her is a simple, sweet way to show your affection.
    • Check in with her if you think her family would frown on any physical contact. If you're in doubt, let her initiate anything and just follow her lead.[2]
  4. You're going to be nervous or stressed, and that is okay. But don't convince yourself that you need to shape your behavior to become a "perfect" partner -- they don't exist. Mind your manners, introduce yourself with a smile and firm handshake, and then be yourself. Imagine you're meeting a professor or teacher for the first time, or a new business contact, instead of your potential in-laws.
    • Tell stories about yourself, be honest about your goals and hopes, and don't be afraid to crack a low-key joke or two if it feels right. Stop second-guessing every action and just be yourself.[3]
    • Speak genuinely about your girlfriend and let her family know what you like about her. That's a great way to make a good impression.
  5. If a new food is put in front of you, try it with a smile. When the family has a moment of prayer, bow your head respectfully, even if you don't share their faith. Your overriding principle is to just "go with the flow." You are being welcomed into their family, so accept that invitation with open arms.
    • The more you learn about a girl's family, the more you also learn about her.
    • This doesn't mean you need to lie or change your personal beliefs in order to fit in. It simply means trying to listen and learn instead of making things about you.[4]
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Method 3
Method 3 of 3:

Staying with Her for Longer Periods

  1. If you're going to be a good house guest, you need to help out around the house. Most importantly, don't wait for her to ask you to do something if you notice it needs to be done. Staying with someone requires both sides to work together to keep the space happy and livable. Some chores to look out for include:
    • Watering plants
    • Doing dishes
    • Washing sheets, blankets, and towels
    • Tending to pets
    • Vacuuming.
  2. There are going to be some things that she likes a particular way, even if they don't make sense to you. Maybe her spice rack is particularly organized for easy cooking, or she likes the towels folded particularly. Everyone, including you, has little quirks and preferences for your living conditions -- so be sure to respect hers. Being considerate is not so much about the spice rack or the towels. It is about understanding her personal space and preferences.
    • She likely has her things in very particular orders and places -- be respectful and ask questions when storing your own stuff.
    • You may have ways of doing things you may think are "better" or "more logical," but remember that this isn't your house. At the end of the day, her preferences for her stuff take priority.[5]
  3. If you're staying at her house, you should be willing to help cover at least some of the expenses, particularly food. While she may have it covered, she may also want to split rent or utilities, depending on how long you'll be staying. Don't just assume that "everything's good." Make a point to ask her about finances before unsaid arguments become a problem.
    • Talking about money is never fun, but it is essential to preserve a strong, healthy relationship.
  4. Maybe she needs a little quiet time when she gets home from work. Perhaps you both really like to shower before leaving, but need to work out a way that you both have enough time. The best way to handle these situations is to talk about them as they come up -- finding compromise early on instead of waiting until one of you is upset. Common things to cover include:
    • Who does what chores or house maintenance tasks?
    • Etiquette for inviting other people over for visits/dinner/hanging out/etc.
    • Your usual routines, including sleep schedules, and how to be respectful of them.[6]
  5. Talking about romance may be the least romantic thing you can do, but it is absolutely necessary. Whether you're sharing a bed with a partner or just friends living together, sit down and talk about physical intimacy together early on.
    • If you're a couple, think about how often you'd like to be together and promise each other to be honest about your mood and feelings. If one of you says no, remind each other that is a firm no, not something to be negotiated.
    • If you're just friends, talk about when and how it is acceptable to bring someone home with you, and the etiquette about dating and the house.
  6. Staying with someone for a long time, whether you're dating them or not, tends to lead to some relaxed "rules" and ideas. But just because you get comfortable in the house doesn't mean it is suddenly yours -- all of your basic manners still apply. Clean up any of your messes, put things back where they belong, and respect her rules and preferences and you should be more than okay. How to act at a girl's house is about being a considerate, kind person -- it's not rocket science.
    • Keep in mind that you're in her house, meaning your footprint is going to impact her directly. If, for example, you know that she pays the water bill, don't take 30-minute showers.
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  • There is no "perfect" way to act, so don't fret. Relaxing is hard, but only gets easier the longer you stick around.

About This Article

Erika Kaplan
Co-authored by:
This article was co-authored by Erika Kaplan. Erika Kaplan is a Dating Coach and Matchmaker for Three Day Rule, an exclusive matchmaking company across nine cities in the United States. With over six years of experience, Erika specializes in helping singles find quality matches through date coaching and premium matchmaking services. Erika graduated from Penn State with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations. She worked for Rolling Stone, Us Weekly, and Men’s Journal before leaving publishing to pursue her passion for connecting people. Erika has been featured on Lifetime, the Philadelphia Inquirer, and CBS as well as in Thrillist, Elite Daily, Men’s Health, Fast Company, and Refinery29. This article has been viewed 247,994 times.
2 votes - 30%
Co-authors: 31
Updated: August 6, 2023
Views: 247,994
Categories: Youth
Article SummaryX

If you’re unsure how to act at a girl’s house, just go with the flow and let her suggest things to do or talk about. If you’re staying to eat, offer to help laying the table or washing dishes after dinner. Although you might be intimate with the girl, don’t assume that she wants to do anything physical, just because she invited you over. If in doubt, let her lead the way. If her family are around while you’re there, avoid physical contact with her to avoid any awkwardness. You might be nervous about what they’ll think of you, but try to relax and be yourself so they can see the person you really are. You can also ask the girl about her family ahead of time so you know what to expect. For more tips, including how to stay at a girl’s house for longer periods of time, read on!

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