How to Deal When Your Dad Hates Your Boyfriend

The two words you never want to hear from your dad: Why him?
by Dyan Zarzuela   |  Feb 2, 2017
Image: 20th Century Fox
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When you hit that relationship milestone that is introducing your boyfriend to your parents, there's always that fear that they, or more specifically, your strict, no-nonsense dad who still thinks of you as his precious baby girl, would go, "Why him?" There's always that fear that he would not approve and forbid you from seeing him again. There's always that fear that the meet-the-parents would end up this way:

All of the above takes place in the movie Why Him?, where the dad is an old school type of guy (played by Breaking Bad's Bryan Cranston!) and the boyfriend is a very eccentric video game creator (played by James Franco, all clear eyes and goofy grins in this one). Their personalities hilariously clash from the moment they meet, much to the dismay of Stephanie (Zoey Deutch of Vampire Academy), the girl stuck between the two of them. Here are a few things you can learn from this bunch.

  1. As tempting as it is to lie or ~delay the truth~, it really is better to tell your parents when you start calling someone your boyfriend.

The longer you hide it, the bigger the fallout!

  1. Brief both parties.

Does your dad take a while to warm up to new people, especially those that happen to be dating his daughter? Tell your boyfriend. Does your boyfriend tend to get overly excited and affectionate and blurt out the first thing that comes to mind? Tell your dad he means well.

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  1. Ask the family for backup.


It would be great to have the rest of the family on your side, so ask your mom and siblings to help steer the conversation toward pleasant topics or act as a distraction when necessary.

  1. Help them find a common ground.

Your dad and boyfriend could be so different that it's like they're speaking different languages. But they do have one obvious similarity: you! There’s bound to be something that they can agree on or at least talk civilly about, whether it's a passion for business, a love for podcasts, or a taste for over-the-top milkshakes. Sometimes we tend to dislike people who remind us of ourselves (or our past selves), so who knows—they might discover that they're more alike than they think!

  1. If all else fails, let them work it out in whatever way they see fit.

And remind them that no, you’re not a prize to be won or a piece of property to be traded, but a human being with feelings, and what you’re feeling right now is fervent hope that the two guys you care about to pretty please get along and get through dinner and holidays and future family gatherings in one piece. 


Why Him? is now showing in cinemas.

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About the author
Dyan Zarzuela
Council of Cool 9, Managing Editor, Columnist
Stalks celebrities, watches TV, marathons movies, curls up with books, and flails at concerts for a living. Also: semi-hardcore Whovian.
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