Friday, May 30, 2008

Trials of a Single Brown Girl with a Marriage Minded Mother

Last month, one of my many cousins tied the knot at a simple, but elegant ceremony just outside of Sydney. A mutual friend who was at the wedding sent us pictures so that we could all oooo and ahhh appreciatively over the beautiful setting, the gorgeous couple, the tasteful decor and all other aspects of the happy occasion.

Scanning the photographs online, my mother gushed excessively over the bride and her dress; Over how happy she looked and how happy HER mother looked, and over how happy HIS mother looked. She could not stress enough how happy everyone appeared to be.

My mother has taken to excessive gushing over every photograph that is wedding related. This amounts to copious amounts of gushing at regular intervals thanks to the fact that I have recently reconnected with a whole bunch of my high school friends - who are all married, and all have their wedding photographs posted online.

While looking (and gushing) my mother also throws significant looks my way that are accompanied by various strange eye and eyebrow gestures. My mother used to study classicalI Indian dance and she is very adept at manipulating her facial expressions. While this modern version of facial yoga is perhaps fascinating to some, I studiously look away during every performance and pretend like we're not looking at her hopes and dreams getting (yet again) dashed, but rather at something quite common place and usual.

If you think that I am over reacting to my mother's recent obsession with getting me married, let me tell you a little story that will perhaps put my situation into focus. A few months ago she pitched me the idea of going "see" a "boy" in Texas. She was even willing to pay for my flight out there and back, and even contribute a bit towards my hotel. All I had to do was go spend some time with this guy and see if I "liked" him.

On the surface, this sounded like quite a good deal really.

Free flight - check

Free accommodation - check

Chance to see new city (even if it IS in Texas) - check

All good things really you're saying... as you wonder why I wouldn't go off on a little vacation just to please my mum. After all, I'm always going off on little trips here and there. Well, yes that is true. But I do NOT go on vacation with the intent of "seeing" prospective suitors/husbands. I do NOT like the idea of my mother trolling for men for me to go visit. And I CERTAINLY do not like all of the above if the man in question is RELATED to me!

Yup - turns out that the guy she was trying to set me up with is actually my cousin! My dad and his mum are first cousins. Our grandfathers were brothers. Now, I can fully understand if this was some 5th cousin twice removed or some equally vague relative. Those are the kinds of relationships where one acknowledges that one is related, but over dozens of generations of a tangled genealogy no one quite remembers how the two families were related in the first place. This situation was quite different. Call me a prude, but I'm of the opinion that if the relationship is close enough to figure out, then the only kind of kisses those two should be sharing is the quick-peck-on-the-cheek variety. Honestly, when the guests show up to the wedding and are asked "Bride's side or Groom's?" - there should be no hesitation!!!!

When I realized just who she had pegged as the groom in this Bride of Frankenstein kind of set up and I began to protest about how a) vile an idea it was, b) she should really stay well OUT of my private life, c) she had a better chance of me agreeing to having my eyes plucked out and d) that she should not be trying to set me up with guys with who I would probably end up having mutant children.

My mum's response to my barrage of angry statements is that there is absolutely no danger of mutant children because she has already consulted with a doctors in regards to the same.


I wasn't sure which part of this entire situation I should be most upset about.

The fact that my parents are determined/desperate to get me married.

The fact that they are so determined/desperate that they'll stoop to considering family members.

Or the fact that they are determined/desperate enough to talk about this with total strangers.

I do know that I was so staggered by her last remark that I was left gaping at her back as she majestically swept out of the room. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I do believe that round 1 went to my mother!


Jules said...

You could always say to your mum "Don't worry, mum - I will ask [name of cousin in Sydney] to introduce me to eligible non-gay men when I visit her (if any actually exist in Sydney, that is). Then, if I meet someone, fall in love, get married, have children, I will be on the other side of the world, which is a long way for you to visit your grandchildren."

Or you could try something like "there are worse things than not being married, Mum - like being a lesbian single mother!!"

When I went to live in London for 2 years, my mum's biggest fear was that I would meet someone over there, get married, have kids and not return to Australia. I returned home to Australia unmarried, much to my mother's relief.

She doesn't talk about this worry anymore, even though I am still living outside of Australia - I think she is just hoping that I will (eventually) get married to someone.

Scribbler said...


HEiDi said...


that is a really good throw off remark, "well, would you rather me to be a lesbian single mother?"

try it and let us know how it pans out!

All of this is just a matter of the difference in our generation. There's so much more to life than getting married and having crotch droppers. I don't know why they don't get it and I no longer care trying to figure them out except for waving off their wishes.

The Pixy Princess said...

@Jules - trust me, my mum's prolly got my Aussi aunts lining up "meets" for me when I'm there! She lets no grass grow under her feet where this is concerned.

@scribbler - don't you DARE go all "Smug Married" on me!

@heidi - "crotch droppers" hahahahahahahahaahahah

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