Photo: Izlan Somai/Shutterstock

20 Signs You Were Raised by a Malaysian Mom

Malaysia Student Work
by Lee Wei Xin May 6, 2016

1. You got a Rotan or Tampar or Chilli padi stuffed into your mouth on at least one occasion.

You don’t talk back to a Malaysian mum.

2. You’ve heard this before: “If you don’t behave, (insert person here) will come catch you!”

The person may be the police, a ghost, the security guard, Apunene, or any random guy who happens to look scary.

3. You know better than to mess with your mum’s Tupperware.

It is fine if you lost your books, pencil, pencil case or even your bag. But never, ever her beloved Tupperware.

4. Your first “My Ambition” essay was limited to Doctor, Engineer or Lawyer.

You needed to write your first ambition essay and you didn’t know where to start. Mum gave you those choices and only those choices.

5. You always ask permission.

When your friends ask you out, there’s no “yes” or “no.” There’s only “I need to ask my mum first.”

6. She will always make you feel too skinny.

On top of being a great cook, she always says “Eat more lah, you look so skinny, like a lidi.”

7. You watch your language on social media.

You really want to say the F word on Facebook, but you know your mom is watching.

8. You are prepared to answer 20 questions before being allowed to go out with your friends.

Where are you going? How will you get there? Who are you going with? (elaborate on your friends’ background), What are you going to do? When will you be back? Who will fetch you back?

9. You’ve tasted the fury of Rotans or slippers or clothes-hangers.

You may have thrown her Rotan out of the house when she was not at home. The next thing we know, she got herself a new one: this time, it came with chicken feathers and doubled as a duster.

10. She compares you to other people way too often.

“Look at your hard-working brother. Why can’t you be like him?”

11. You are multi-talented.

You were sent to art class, music class, dance class, etc. She is Kiasu and she wants you to have more carrier choices if you turn out to be “not a study-material.” Always thinking ahead.

12. She shows you off to her friends despite always comparing you to Ah Beng, Ali and Muthu.

She is actually proud of you. She just likes to make comparisons in front of you to make you work harder.

13. She shook her head while watching other teenagers. “If you become like that I will (insert punishment here).”

She also hid your PSP because some random kid got into some trouble by playing too many video games.

14. She calls you Ah Boy or Ah Girl at one point.

As if she is afraid that you might be confused about your own gender.

15. Her advice about love is “don’t fall in love when you are young.”

Definition of young may vary: until secondary school, college, or university. “You are still so young, have boyfriend/girlfriend for what???”

16. If you see her missed call(s), you are screwed.

Before hello, you will hear “Why you didn’t pick up my call?.”

17. She complains about all those people double parking.

And then she double parks, too.

18. No sleepovers!

“Why do you want to sleepover at other people’s place? Is this house not good enough for you? “

19. She follows you a little too closely on Facebook.

She likes and shares every photo, tags you in random photos, tags herself in your photos, shares your posts on her wall, tags your friends, shares your old photos, comments on your post, and comments on your friends’ statuses. It’s her way of showing how much she cares.

20. No matter how tidy you think your room is, your mum will think otherwise.

“Why is your room so messy?” And if you are a girl, you get the next part: “You are going to be someone’s wife!”

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