Should I Listen to My Mum?

Mum: you gave me a great education and I love you. But sometimes you give me weird advice. It is often surprisingly funny.

Advice on relationships and family

“Is Nick learning French yet?” my mum asked me the other day. “I would like to be able to communicate with him. Why doesn’t he learn faster?”
I was surprised she was in such a panic when her English is actually pretty good.
“By the time he can speak French as well as you speak English, you’d better off improving your English!” I said.
“You should only talk to him in French from now on, and he’d learn”, she suggested.
“But we couldn’t talk about anything then. Apart from ‘how are you’ or ‘I’m hungry’…pretty limited”
“Yeah but you’ve gotta do what it takes to teach him French!”

So, let’s summarize my mum’s advice here:
I should FORCE my fiancé to learn french and cut any communication with him while he learns just so that he’s able to talk to her.

Last time I was visiting, she suddenly deemed necessary to educate me about having children.

“When you’ll have a baby, I think you should stay at home for at least 12 month. That way, you’ll be able to devote yourself completely to your baby, day and night. Your life will consist of breast-feeding.”
I protested: “I think I’d like to go back to work after 6 month or so.”
“6 month is not enough!” She exclaimed. “Your child will be missing the precious affection only a mum can give causing him to have all sorts of mental disorders when he’s older! Of course you can go out to socialize with other mums and share your wonderful experiences! But going back to work after only 6 month is selfish and not compatible with breast-feeding.”

“Mum”, I explained. “I don’t want babies yet. I don’t even think I want babies anymore after that conversation.”

Hippy-ish advice

When my mum saw my new watch, she checked right away if it was an automatic. Unfortunately, it is a quartz. “Cécile, why did you get a watch that needs a battery? Don’t you know that it will drain your energy away? You should not wear it.”

My mum came to visit me in Zürich last summer. Upon arriving, she checked all the rooms with her Feng Shui filter:

“The toilet cover should always be down”, she started. “The positive energy from your house, or ‘Chi’ escapes in the loo otherwise.” I stayed stoic. We moved on to the bedroom:

“The colour red should be banned from your bedroom”, she went on, disapproving a red picture on the wall. “Red is an exciting colour, not compatible with sleeping well.”
“I’ve put the red picture in the bedroom on purpose, I said. “Where else should the excitement be? In the kitchen?

You might also like:

Ten Terrible Reasons to Get Married

English Words I Don’t Dare to Say


5 thoughts on “Should I Listen to My Mum?

  1. You sure are a joy to read, Cécile; no one does it quite like you do. I’ll always come back here and click ‘random post’ just to watch you open little windows on your life, for a laugh, for a lesson, for a tip. A breath of fresh air; never labored, always fun, the scenes unfold and you juggle the comments. You’re a charmer.

  2. My girlfriend is hispanic. Though her father speaks very well english (and French, and obviously Spanish), her mother knows only basic english vocabulary. Whenever I’m spending time with her family, her mother and I always have a hard time communicating and resort simply to smiles. THIS, #1, is like my life, except it’s my girlfriend’s life, technically, as it’s her mother telling her to teach me Spanish. Oh, and cute tags. Mental Disorders. Win(:

  3. I LOVE it hahahah
    for the breast feeding, I was thinking about doing it for a month or two…. and that is ONLY if: the child accepts the milk, it is not too painful or I actually have milk to give…
    your mum should go to Japan where they say that you’re a bad mother leaving your baby at home while you’re at a dinner with some of your friends… I personally think I want to say a woman alive and fun after the birth of my child (and go back to work within 3 or 4 months…)
    please don’t tell her that ;)

    • I’m afraid my mum will read your comment herself Lorène ;-)
      I believe that breast-feeding is important. I’ll do my best to make it happen as long as I can. But as you say, I’ll also want to stay a woman. I’m sure it’ll also be in the child’s interest.

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