Family ties: what to do when your newfound love is Jewish but the family isn't.

You've finally found someone who has everything. A great sense of humor. An unassailable dominance at board games. A commitment to raising Jewish children. And a mother named Christina. Dating a Jew isn't always a way to avoid the "December Dilemma," especially when your newfound love has converted to Judaism. Christmas is often the dealbreaker for Christians considering conversion, and even those who've abandoned the holiday usually have relatives who can't comprehend their decision. Many imagine they'll reenter the fold, escorted by a desirable man or woman who can't imagine giving up Christmas (i.e., not you.) Know this. Respect this. And ask your mate how to handle it. You may find yourself drinking eggnog during your first holiday together: so long as you're comfortable with it, go right ahead. The key is to find a compromise that supports and strengthens your new relationship without undermining your identity or beliefs. While you may be disappointed that you won't have another grandmother's matzoh ball soup to taste test, having a non-Jewish extended family can be a good thing (especially if you like grandma's eggnog). You have the chance to share your culture and traditions with people who may never have been exposed to them. Remember, dating is all about new opportunities.