Having the support of family is a dream; they're always there when you need them, willing to lend a helping hand. However, sometimes family members are completely clueless, and their assistance has adverse effects. These people shared what went down when their family thought they were helping when in reality, their good intentions were horribly misplaced.
1. My Sister Did Quite The Job On Me
My little sister wanted a template for her resume, so she borrowed mine. Not long after, I received a surprising email from Google's Dublin location, stating that they had declined my supposed job application. After a confused chat with my embarrassed sister, I learned that our mother had actually set the whole thing up. They had teamed up to fill out the job application. Reading what they wrote left me speechless.
They submitted answers like, "Q: Why do you want to work for Google? A: Because I LOVE technology". I could only guess what the hiring manager thought when they saw a resume from a music major who also studied Chinese language applying for a high-level role like a "Senior Technical Programmer".
2. Grandma Doesn’t Let Up
My girlfriend and I have found our footing in our respective careers with solid full-time jobs. My family is based around 60 miles away in the town where I grew up. Every so often, my dear grandma sends over newspaper snippets featuring job adverts, hoping that it might entice me to move back home. Though miles apart, these jobs don’t have a speck of similarity to what we currently do.
During our monthly visits, grandma also frequently insists on us converting her basement into our little home, so we could save on rent. As much as I adore her, this idea just seems slightly peculiar to me.
3. My Mom Hit A Sour Note
My mom's a pro musician and she always dreamed I'd follow her footsteps. But the moment I got into college, I decided to spend the minimum time needed on music to keep my scholarship, redirecting all my focus and energy on medical biology. I wasn't taking it easy either, tackling not one, but two doctorates in medical science. Nearly a year into my new routine, mom somehow got wind of it.
She got on the phone straight away, ringing up the college and talking to several folks in the music department. She insisted they push me to dedicate more time to music and get up to what she considered a "proper" performance level.
4. A Publix Humiliation
My grandad was adamant that I should contact a teacher he randomly ran into at the supermarket, to arrange an "internship" for my final college semester when I'm supposed to be student teaching. No matter how much I tried to explain, he didn't understand that's not how it works. I have to apply via my university and local county, and then they place me with a classroom and a teacher. It got increasingly frustrating.
He checked in weekly, accusing me of being unappreciative for not using his assistance when he had put so much effort in. Why couldn't I do one tiny thing to ensure my future and land a classroom assignment? It was quite awkward, as it was bizarre to call up a stranger who my grandad bumped into at Publix and tell her I didn't need her support. After some time, guilt got the best of me and I decided to call the teacher.
I said, "Hello, my grandad gave me your phone number because he believes that—" but she cut me off, saying, "Relax, honey. Your grandad essentially guilt-tripped me into sharing my phone number. I'm aware you don't have control over your internship placement. Talk to you later". It was a truly uncomfortably moment.
5. The Taste Of Embarrassment
When I turned 18, my buddy who worked as a chef proposed a delivery job at Quiznos for me. I mentioned this to my mom, pondering over it. Her reaction was intense. She shot an angry email to Quiznos's head office, criticizing them for offering me a job and disapproving of the manager. And here's where it got even more awkward.
That email trickled down to the manager, then to my friend, who ended up reading it out loud in a car packed with our buddies. Absolute cringe fest.
6. Mom, The Pickup Artist
I'm in my mid-twenties, and whenever I'm hanging out with my mom, she's always trying to play matchmaker for me, regardless of where we are. She's even slipped my number to attractive waitresses, shop assistants who helped me in changing rooms, and bartenders. And believe me, she's not at all subtle about it.
She typically jumps straight in with, "My son's available, you know? Plus, he's pretty good-looking, and he has a stable job and a car".
7. Stop The Music!
My dad made me quit guitar lessons because he believed it was bringing down my grades. Even though I managed to keep straight As in high school, completed all my homework, and played guitar for eight hours daily, he wasn't convinced. He even went to the extreme of intimidating to burn my precious $800 Schecter. It's beyond me as to why he thought music was messing my life up.
I had a job, I studied, and simply loved music.
8. The Grass Isn’t Always Greener
There was this one time when my mom decided to be helpful and mowed the lawn for me, hoping to knock off a chore from my list. Unfortunately, it turned into a disaster. She set the mower's blade to the lowest possible setting, brutally shaving the grass right down to the earth. Our yard was left with nothing but bare dirt, and there was even some dirt being swept away by the wind.
"I didn't notice", she said. It was with great patience that we had to wait for months before that grass grew back to its former glory.
9. What Once Was Too Much Is No More
My mom had these unique habits that used to drive me up the wall. She would label everything of mine, from underwear to books, and even things where ink just wouldn't stick. She'd attempt to do laundry, not really grasping the nuance of it. Throughout my life, her version of tidying up was lumping everything—papers, cell phones, empty soda cans—into one big pile.
Those habits followed me into adulthood, even after I had a family of my own. She'd always tell my wife and me that our home needed more furniture, more wall decorations, more trinkets. Her aim seemed to be turning our home into a carbon copy of her cluttered one.
While she could be quite vexing at times, she also did lovely things, like slipping me some cash, taking my wife shopping, and offering to babysit our kids. Despite feeling unwell on her 43rd anniversary, she insisted on looking after our kids. The next day, a doctor visit revealed she had cancer.
Following an emergency surgery, we found out it was untreatable. She never came home from the hospital and passed on two weeks later. Now, those quirky habits that used to bug me don't seem so bad, in retrospect.
10. Living The High Life
My grandmother was once quite wealthy, but she spent all her millions on furniture and items with no real value. Regardless, she continues to behave as if she still has her fortune, expecting my mom and aunt to maintain her lifestyle as if she's still a member of the country club. She's absolutely insufferable.
She's even tried to matchmake me with wealthy men—but that's not the most twisted part. She wanted me to date a third cousin of mine. At one point, ignoring the four-hour distance between us, she arranged a meeting with the Dean of my school to discuss my achievements.
For my 21st birthday, she treated me to an upscale steakhouse where each meal costs about $90. She claimed it was to 'educate' me and introduce me to her circle of friends. But then she expected me to pick up the bill, which came to $459, and I was only a student at that time. And so, the stories continue. Her argument is that she's doing these things to give me a leg up in life, but it often feels like she's doing it more for herself.
11. Trying To Put The Hit On Me
Ever since I was 12, my mom had this idea that I should have a boyfriend or else, by her odd reasoning, this made me a lesbian. She believed in the traditional Mexican way of meeting potential partners which often happened at events like weddings and Quinceaneras. Despite her aspirations for me, I was always more of a bookworm and a tomboy than a social butterfly.
My mom tried to change this by putting me in shorter skirts and dresses, which I simply was not comfortable in. Moreover, the guys who would typically hit on me already had histories with at least three of my cousins which I didn't find appealing. Unlike most of my relatives, I managed to avoid teenage pregnancy, which seemed to be a common arrow in our family tree.
I had my first boyfriend at the age of 21, a late bloomer by my family's standards as most of my cousins were already married by then. By the time I turned 24, I was married as well, finally putting to rest my mom's fears and showing for once and for all that yes, I was interested in men.
12. Duo Lingo Disaster
My wife's grandma is from Russia and she wanted me to pick up her native language. So, she got me this massive box filled with cassette tapes. When I realized what they were, I burst out laughing. These were language tapes meant for Russians looking to learn English!
Her idea was that I could hear the instructions in Russian, then the English translations, and somehow piece together the Russian language in reverse. Nope. That's not how language learning works.
13. Hidden Figures
My mom is deeply religious, while I am not, so it's almost like a game of hide and seek with religious items in my house. I might stumble upon a sparkling figurine of Virgin Mary in the back of my toilet, or tiny illustrations of Jesus tucked away on my basement shelves, and so on.
It always gives me a bit of a laugh when I spot some unexpected snapshot of a random saint peeking out from a book on my shelf. I bet I still have a whole bunch of these hidden treasures that I haven't even discovered yet.
14. Priorities, People!
My family falls into the bracket beneath the middle class. Throughout my middle school and high school years, we couldn't afford regular doctor's visits and our bills frequently fell behind. Our credit score was, frankly, dismal. However, my parents made everything so much worse.
Although it may seem superficial, I must acknowledge that I was often gifted costly, albeit well-meaning, material items. My parents bought me everything from clothes, cars, and jewelry, to tech gadgets, all of which were beyond our financial capacity. These unnecessary luxuries were pushed onto me despite my efforts to stay economical. Despite the fancy watches they strapped onto my wrist, worth up to $300, I'd insist they'd use the money to settle our bills instead.
All it resulted in were threats to throw this stuff away. Then there were the costly clothes and shoes. While the items that genuinely appealed to me were from thrift stores or sales, I had untouched $200 coats hanging in my closet. How could I appreciate these things when the fridge was near empty and the lights were going out due to unpaid bills?
15. Meddling Middle School Misfortune
When my primary school days were winding down, we were given a choice between two middle schools to further our education. One was quite appealing, located in a nice neighborhood while the other—despite being closer to my home—looked slightly neglected and was situated in a rough area. Even without setting foot in each of them, it was a no-brainer for me.
I was more than ready to endure an additional 20 minutes of commuting to attend a good school. Most of my peers also leaned towards this preferable choice, which resulted in the board announcing that not everyone would land their first pick. Assignment to each school would depend on various criteria.
Given my solid academic performance, I was confident that I'd secure a slot in the superior school. In both math and English, I was part of the accelerated classes. However, I was taken aback when I was assigned to the less desirable school. My shock was intensified when I realized nearly all of my friends got into the better school.
This marked the start of the most challenging four years of my life, causing mental scars that still impact me today. When I eventually learned the disturbing truth about how I ended up at the other school, I was devastated. My father was worried that the extra distance to the better school would jeopardize my punctuality and be an additional financial burden due to needing another bus.
As a result, he'd reached out to the school board. In his letter, he had explained that although I wanted to go to the better school, the other school was more logistically suitable. Out of my love for my parents, I've never shared my thoughts on this matter. However, his action, till this day, remains something I have struggled to forgive.
16. God Mom, Lay Off!
Growing up, my mom used to force me to attend Sunday church services, church-related youth groups every week, summer church camps, and morning bible study sessions daily before school. Yet, she appears to assume I haven't really grasped the whole concept of God, even after all this.
So, every time I visit her, she continues to try to convince me to embrace her beliefs. Just a reminder, mom, I'm 36 and I've made my stance quite clear. Appreciate the effort, but no is no.
17. An Invitation For Disaster
My mother-in-law attempted to commandeer the guest list for our wedding, insisting she knew the exact invitees we needed. The list ended up populated mostly by her family, leaving limited space for my friends or kin. Furthermore, she wanted to include all of her colleagues, friends, and their kids.
Eventually, I had to step in and assert that I had restricted space, a set budget, and most importantly, it was my big day. Fortunately, my husband was on my side. This decision didn't sit too well with her family either, especially since I decided to host an event for guests aged 13 and above only.
18. Dragged On My Dad’s Dates
When I was a kid, my dad used to take me everywhere with him, even on his dates. While it might sound sweet and funny, he made it absolutely miserable. All he did was poke fun at me, mentioning my constant time spent on the computer. I couldn't stand it. He continued this until he realized that ladies aren't impressed when you belittle your own kid or probe him with questions like, "Why don't you draw anymore"? I'd reply, "You threw out all my sketches from my room, so I stopped".
Also, feeling uncomfortable as an 11-year-old kid alongside a couple of adults in their 40s attempting to date didn't sit well with them. I'd excuse myself to use the restroom or roam about, just to trip over something my dad deliberately placed. Then he'd laugh, thinking it amusing. His idea was that by dragging me along, since I was always glued to my computer, he was teaching me something.
19. Garage Sale Granny
My grandparents are total fans of garage sales. This actually came in handy for me when I was setting up my own place because they had heaps of unwanted furniture stored in their garage. But the thing is, they just couldn't stop. I'd receive calls from them, "Dear, we found a great microwave for you! It was a bargain at just $5"!
I've somehow ended up with three microwaves over the past three years from them. And my daughter's socks! They keep buying her socks every single time I visit. But the irony is, my little girl can't stand socks and hardly ever wears them. Now, there are SOCKS EVERYWHERE.
I've got a pair of huge shopping bags bursting with unworn baby socks stuffed in the closet and the crazy part is, I can't even donate them. It seems that most places where I live only accept socks donations if they're still in their original packaging.
20. It Didn’t Make Any Cents
One day, I was heading to a coin show with my colleague and his stepdad. They picked me up and we headed to the event. After they saw me home, the stepdad was pulled over and questioned by a couple of officers close to my place. Turns out, my dad had alerted the authorities, thinking that the stepdad was potentially harmful and I was naive about the situation.
Now here's the crazy twist: I was 21 years old when this happened! It sure was a real embarrassment learning about the whole situation the following day.
21. A Numbers Game
Before my wife and I met, her mom had this quirky habit of sharing her daughter's number with "nice Jewish guys" who she thought would make suitable partners. It was a little odd but not too strange or unheard of. However, what was interesting is that even almost a year into our relationship, this habit continued.
Imagine this—we'd come back to her place after a cozy movie date, only to find a message on her answering machine. It would be from some guy she'd never interacted with before, who got her number thanks to her mom. And this didn't stop even months into us being together, even after I'd gone for dinner at her mom's place.
22. Single Straight Female
A while back, my sister playfully suggested that I might be a lesbian. This led my parents to assure me they'd always love me "no matter who I am". It took me some time to clarify to them that I wasn't, partly because their notion of me being a lesbian swayed their conservative views when voting for Proposition 8.
I also thought my orientation wasn't that big of a deal and didn't want them to start dreaming about grandkids. But then things started to get messy. As the misunderstandings started to annoy me, I finally came out as straight to my mom. But even after my clarification, she continued to drop hints about how I could find a wife in China (given our Asian ethnicity).
It's important to note that I always stated very clearly that having children wasn't on my agenda. Much to my surprise, this made my mom think that I might be a transgender person transitioning from female to male. She went as far as to ask if I had male intimate area, or if I wanted to switch to a male doctor to deal with my supposed "men's issues". As a straight woman, all these insinuations were pretty baffling.
23. No Bed Of Roses
After facing some money troubles, I decided to move back to my mom's house when I was 28. I was penniless and sleeping on a small single bed. I was expressing worry about how this setup would affect my chances of bringing dates home. Mum's solution was a bit shocking. She told me, "You can borrow my bed. Just give me a heads up beforehand". Needless to say, over the next two years I lived there, I was celibate.
24. Filling My Fridge For Nothing
Every time my grandparents come to visit, they fill my empty cupboards with canned food and my freezer with ready-to-eat meals. I always thank them for their thoughtfulness, but also let them know it isn't needed. They insist, saying they don't want me to go hungry because I'm too on my own to ask for help.
The truth is, my storage is empty most times because after their visit, I donate all the food they brought to a local food bank. As the owner of three restaurants, I rarely find the need to cook at home. Even in a tough year, I make about $2,000,000. So, there's really no need for them to fill up my $10,000 freezer.
25. Proper Phone Etiquette
When I was a young teen, my mom often had me make phone calls, claiming that she was teaching me how to communicate over the phone. Yet, she had me dialing adults about serious matters, like issues regarding the electric company.
She wouldn't give me the information I'd need, such as the account number, to actually solve the issue at hand. I'm pretty sure I was just irritating people who were trying to work, which has resulted in severe phone anxiety in my adulthood.
26. No Thanks For The “Expert” Advice
My mother-in-law shot me a text containing tips about tweaking the language on my personal portfolio website. Her suggestion was swapping out all the personal pronouns I use for "my company name". When I mentioned that this isn't common practice among illustrators I know, she shot back claiming she's an "expert editor".
It's not that I'm unappreciative, but she tends to do this all the time. She dispenses "expert advice" on careers she has little understanding of. When I shared what my job entails, her casual response was, "Well, gee, I could do that".
27. Coast To Coast Annoyance
My aunt regularly tries to set me up with ladies who live a whopping 3,000 miles away. Despite repeatedly telling her that I'm an East Coaster, she keeps trying to match me with West Coast women—a bit useless, really. My girlfriend isn't thrilled about this either. The best part? My aunt's not even elderly or forgetful. She's just a tad quirky.
28. Grammy Was Out Of Step
When I was just a little kid, my grandparents, who were deeply traditional Protestants from the Midwest, held some peculiar beliefs. One of them being that only 'bad people' wear black or gray clothes, and they didn't want to see me, their grandson, in such. They especially didn't like black shoes.
So, imagine the scene when, as a six-year-old, I got my first ever chance to pick out my shoes from Sports Authority. I spent the whole day weighing my choices before finally falling in love with a stunning pair of black and orange New Balance shoes with white logos. To say I was excited to show them off to my grandmother during my summer visit is an understatement.
I even went into details about how these shoes made me run quicker, jump higher, and even made me feel grownup. Her reaction to my new shoes was, “My goodness! These might be the most stylish shoes I've ever seen”!
But to my surprise, when I woke up the next day, my beloved shoes had been discarded. In their place, sat a pair of totally white Nike sneakers, and no one offered any explanation.
29. Father-Son Sacrifices
Growing up, my dad was a star in high school and college sports. However, sports and I didn't get along. Being overweight and having a knack for Dungeons & Dragons and sketching, I was never the athletic type. My father and the high school football coach were close, forcing me to join the team under an assumed obligation. To put it simply, I loathed every moment.
The training was not for me, and I was visibly bad at it. My lack of enthusiasm didn't sit well with the teammates and they wanted me gone. In an attempt to get out, I made a rash decision to jump off the bleachers, hoping to break my leg. Instead, I ended up with a terribly sprained ankle which spared me from our first scrimmage.
Eventually, I gathered enough courage to admit to my dad that I loathed football and wanted to quit the team. I feared he'd be disappointed, but to my surprise, he said: "Son, you're not me. You don't need to play football just because I did. Do whatever makes you happy".
He'd watch football by himself while I immersed myself in reading, drawing and eventually, skateboarding. As time passed, we found common interests in music and cooking. My dad passed on nearly half a decade ago, and oddly enough, I've grown to love football. I watch the games alone, visualizing him by my side. Now, I enjoy it and understand why my dad loved it so.
30. Drowning In Questions
Back in my college days, I was really into swimming. But that seems like ages ago now. I just got worn out from being in the water all the time, so these days I tend to stick to the gym. I enjoy using things like weights, the rowing machine, and the elliptical. But, no matter how many times I tell my mom, she always asks, "Have you gone swimming"?
We've talked about it countless times, how I don't really swim anymore, but I still keep fit. And yet, each time I see her, she's like, "Did you swim recently? How's your swimming going"?
31. Cool It!
A while back, my wife and I decided to head out of town for a two-week vacation. We asked her parents to house-sit and look after our cat. Never again.
We left our home at a cozy temperature to counter Atlanta's scorching summer, ensuring our cat didn't overheat and our temporary guests weren't uncomfortable. Including my brother, who was set to stay over for a few days. Upon our return, a wave of heat welcomed us into our own home.
Oddly, our cat, who usually avoided the basement, had taken refuge there where it was a bit cooler. Bizarrely, her parents had decided to clean our perfectly tidy kitchen counters, and tragically used a harmful cleaner on our marble surface, which left permanent spots.
My brother, during his short stay, had actually switched the AC back on. However, he noticed it was switched off again upon his return a few days later. This temperature tug of conflict didn't sit well with our cat, who decided to hibernate in the basement for weeks. Plus, we rarely saw her afterward.
By the end of it all, we were left staring at a hefty energy bill, thanks to the constant heating and cooling of the house. It even led to the wallpaper in two bathrooms starting to peel. When we questioned her parents, their reasoning was they were trying to save us money on our energy bill and had dusted off our counters with a cleaner we had – which, unfortunately, turned out to be a hardwood floor cleaner.
32. Critical Clotheshorse
My mom decided to turn all of my perfectly fitting pants into shorts, handing them over to my brother with the reasoning that they were "too small" for me. Recognizing later that this action might've bugged me, she compensated by bringing a few pairs of light blue Wrangler jeans with a 40” waist, insisting they'd fit me better.
I should note, my size was 36", so naturally, they didn't fit well. In addition, she felt the need to point out my little brother's weight, who, by the way, was already pretty conscious about it. She told him he needed to swim with a shirt on because of his belly.
It wouldn't have bothered me as much if she had been young and didn't know any better. But, she had just turned 65 and should have thought before speaking.
33. Dressed To Impress
My mom had this vision, probably drawn from TV shows, of me working in an office decked out in a suit and tie. She thought it was the perfect life. Funny thing is, our roots were in farming and I, well, I was always an artist at heart. After I graduated with my degree, I took a job in tech support where dressing smart was mandatory.
My mom was overjoyed and, believe me, she went overboard buying me collared shirts and ties. It was quite something. Since then, I've spent most of my career in offices, though ties aren't really a necessity anymore. It's clear she's always felt a tad let down with this turn of events.
34. Temptation Almost Took Over
Back in my twenties when I wasn't really dating, my stepmom thought it'd be a good idea for me to marry a pretty family friend who was in the US on a green card. The idea was for her to get citizenship, but my stepmom also hinted that any other 'personal deals' we might strike were our business.
I was actually considering it for a bit, but then my dad got wind of my stepmom's plan and promptly squashed it.
35. Harrowing Hook Up
Once, while enjoying a day at the delightful Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk with my family, my dad, slightly inebriated, unexpectedly asked me, "Why aren't you dating anyone"? I was only about 11 or 12 years old then. As I told him I hadn't met anyone special yet, he decided to play matchmaker himself.
He beckoned a group of full-figured, goth girls to "introduce his son". As expected, I was mortified. I hurried away to seek refuge with my mom, who was quite upset at my dad's behavior. She even confronted him, asking "Why pick goth girls"? His response was regrettable and unfitting. That incident has stayed with me to this day.
36. Upstairs, Downstairs
When I was about 11, I was pedaling my bike home from school when a wild wind began to gust. It got so fierce that I ended up walking my bike for the last few blocks. Just as I was nearing home, the tornado alarms blared. I rushed towards the back door, sprinted downstairs into the basement, and headed for the 'safety corner' that my parents had shown me.
I began freaking out about the house caving in on top of me. Suddenly, I heard the phone ringing from upstairs. At first, I ignored the shrill sound, waiting for about two minutes before finally deciding to answer it. It was my mother. Her only words were, "Get back downstairs"!
37. Bound And Gagged
The weekend following my solo move into a new apartment, my mom and sister came over for a few days. Unfortunately, I had to work on their first day here, though I suggested many enjoyable pastimes they could do in my absence. I specifically requested that they leave my boxes as they were so I could put everything in its place.
There were things my mother really shouldn't stumble upon. When I returned from work, to my shock, they had unpacked everything. My mom held out a bag that she hadn’t opened, containing bed straps. She innocently asked if she should set them up as well. It was absolutely embarrassing.
38. College Control Freak
My mum became heavily involved in my college life to a point where it felt overwhelming. She assumed control over what classes I took and the degree I chose to pursue. The situation escalated as I grew older, with her regularly reaching out to my academic advisor to question my course selections and why specific classes, like ENGL 3044 or HIST 4513, didn’t count towards the general education credit for the multi-disciplinary degree she strongly recommended.
I had a genuine interest in sociology, but Mum dismissed it as unimportant, considering it more of a radical, free-thinking degree. This made my college experience unpleasant, resulting in me avoiding any professors she had communicated with. Whenever I changed my university password in an attempt to regain some level of privacy, she would get upset.
Her method of keeping me under her control was the ultimatum of withholding my college tuition and canceling my car insurance, which she leveraged out of her fear that I would eventually seek out better opportunities elsewhere.
39. Drop The Dating Advice
My brother, sister, sister-in-law, along with all the aunts and uncles I've met over the last four years, always seem to find the time to offer me dating tips or quiz me on my taste in girls. They even playfully ask me to point out the prettiest girl in the room.
Especially noteworthy is one of my uncles, who firmly suggested I casually date girls rather than getting into serious relationships. He justified this by stereotyping that no 23-year-old guy would want a committed relationship, equating it to a metaphorical anchor holding him back from his freedom. He basically hinted that every young man desires to freely date multiple people, not restricting himself to one person. This advice was openly floated around during a family dinner, with my parents in attendance.
Overwhelmed, I wished I could escape. It's gotten to the point where I've contemplated pretending to be gay—which I am not—just so they could leave me alone. However, I realize then they'd probably do the same, but this time with guys.
40. Something Was Fishy With My Juice
I've been a vegetarian for seven years now. There was this one summer when my mom got into a habit of making these tasty orange juices for me every day. The oranges were unusually sweet, and I often wondered if they were from a unique source. One day, while rummaging through the fridge, I made a disturbing discovery.
I spotted a strange, medicine-like jar. Curiosity piqued, I opened the jar and was greeted by the scent of ripe, sugary oranges. On studying the label, I was in for a surprise—the "medicine" was actually fish oil, and my mom had been adding it to my juices. For someone who doesn't consume fish, this was a big deal.
A person who eats fish while still following a vegetarian diet is known as a "vegequarian pescatarian", which I certainly wasn't. I was understandably upset and didn't speak to her for a whole week.
41. Mama Yenta
My mom keeps trying to pair me up with Jewish guys. We're a Jewish family, but I've made it abundantly clear I don't want to marry someone extremely religious. Frankly speaking, most Jewish guys just aren't my cup of tea. Recently, my mom started introducing me to lovely ladies. I guess she thinks, being a good-looking, single 26-year-old without kids, the only explanation must be that I'm gay.
42. The Devil’s Devices
My grandma has a quirky habit of discarding any device with the number '666' in its serial number or barcode. She believes these gadgets might pose a danger as they're linked with the devil. In fact, she once received a new lawnmower as a present from her children and tossed it away.
She didn't give it away to anyone, fearing that it would bring bad luck; she just slipped it into the trash. She's done the same thing at our place, too. She might be eccentric, but I do adore her!
43. My Family Was Full Of Gay Abandon
When my parents discovered I was gay, my mom suggested it would be wise for me to come out to all our housemates. At that time, that included my sister, brother, grandmother, and great-aunt. She insisted that if I didn't take the initiative, she'd step in for me, as she believed it would enhance my relationship with everyone.
I tried having this conversation with my grandmother, who had just endured an intense operation and was heavily medicated due to the pain. I gathered the courage to tell her I was gay. In response, she went on a half-hour tangent about how she knew a teacher who was gay back in her high school days. Unbeknownst to me, she ended up spreading the news to several other family members via email.
This led to a heartfelt letter from my aunt wishing me well. She expressed that I could "continue living like a free spirit", yet urged caution because "AIDS is seriously intimidating ". She also shared her view that I should refrain from sleeping with anyone until I was married.
44. Time To Cut The Cord
My parents struggle with the reality that I'm an adult now, married, and capable of managing my own life. They worked hard to make me depend on them and can't grasp that me being self-sufficient doesn't equate to not loving them. For instance, I'm expecting a baby and I'm high risk. Even though my mom is anxious about it and constantly offers to accompany me to appointments, I need her to understand that her presence make me uneasy.
My baby's girl is doing well, and instead, I'd prefer that my husband, her father, joined me at these visits. My mother repeatedly referred to my older daughter as 'her' baby, and she's starting to do the same now. This drives me up the wall. My parents are also frustrated that we live a couple of hours away in a different state.
They'd love us to visit them every weekend, and aren't happy when we only manage a visit every few months. I do chat to my mom daily, but she'll sometimes call me multiple times a day without realizing that I have my own life and tasks to juggle. She often talks about her and my dad's plans to move to Las Vegas. She even thinks it's a wonderful idea for us to tag along. She's even had people cold-call my husband about job opportunities which are completely unsuitable for his career path.
Furthermore, my parents don't have any viable business connections. My mom has been unemployed for the last fifteen years, and my dad has been job hunting for a long time now. Not to mention, they are in a completely different profession to my husband's.
Even if a job opportunity seemed ideal, we wouldn't risk it. We'd rather not associate with their business acquaintances. It's quite clear that my parents have a hard time letting go.
45. Two Sides Of A Shield
I was diagnosed with cancer twice before I even celebrated my fifth birthday, so my parents were overly protective of me. Even simple activities like birthday parties or playing outdoors weren't permitted without my mom by my side. Even as I grew older, I wasn't allowed out late, let alone visit nightclubs. I needed to be home by 10 PM, and I had to make a strong case for my boyfriend (my husband now) to spend the night. The consequences were brutal.
This overly protective environment left me ill-equipped to socialize, make decisions independently, or even manage a household since there always was someone to do these things for me. When I moved in with my boyfriend, my parents reacted as if they were being abandoned, asking things like "Don't you like us any more? What did we do wrong"? My boyfriend patiently taught me everything from operating a washing machine to managing bills and cooking. All life skills I possess today, I owe to him!
My parents kept checking in with messages, emails, and calls multiple times a day until I asked for some space to lead my life. Thankfully, our relationship has improved now, and I even have a daughter of my own, which helps me understand their fears to a certain extent.
But when it comes to my daughter, I want to balance care and independence. I want her to have the confidence to scrape her knees and to be included in everything. As a parent, my goal is to make her feel secure about herself, teach her all I know, and nurture her into a balanced and independent individual.
46. The Only Bad Influence Was Her
When I was younger, my mother shielded me from my father. He was really lazy back when they lived together in Vietnam. Even after we were born, my sister and I, he didn't really step up. My mom had to shoulder all the responsibilities, looking after him and both of us.
Ultimately, we left for the US without him back when my sister and I were still quite young. He missed us and would write to us, yet for 12 years, I didn't see his letters. The advent of technology reconnected us. However, my mom issued warnings about him, fearing that he might taint me with negative influence.
My dad and I corresponded through emails and when my mom found out, she confessed to a long-kept secret. She'd hidden all his letters to save us from thoughts of him, hoping we'd eventually forget. I discovered his letters were filled with nothing but affectionate and cheering words like, "I'm not there with you two, but you're always in my heart". Not a single harmful word or undesirable influence existed in the letters.
Despite this, my mom insisted on reading my dad’s and my email exchanges, which were merely us discussing my life and school events. She was convinced that he aimed to lure me away from school and back to Vietnam. But that wasn't the case. He continually encouraged me to stay in school and reminded me of the benefits of life in America.
However, once while I was out running an errand, I left my email logged in. Seizing the opportunity, my mom sent him an email, posing as me, using harsh words against him. When I returned and discovered this, I confronted her. She justified her actions as an attempt to protect me. All these events unfolded when I was 21.
Interestingly, my grandmother shared my mom’s viewpoint, advising her to prevent me and my sister from communicating with our dad due to the same fear of negative influence.
47. The Cost Of High Tuition
My mom is still paying off student loans from a college she didn't finish 20 years ago. She thinks I'll save money by sticking to a local college so I won't end up like her. I decided to move to New York last year and I'm now getting in-state tuition at one of the most affordable state colleges in the US.
Despite this, my mom is persistently encouraging me to attend private colleges back in our home state. Some of these are religious institutions, but none of them offer the course I need. Plus, they cost four times more than my current school. Also, she tried stirring up my siblings against me by suggesting that moving to New York was because I didn't love them.
Her aim was to make me stay in our home state. That was a pretty tough pill to swallow.
48. Meddlesome Mom Messed With My Mail
My mom has a habit of opening my mail, even bank statements. One day, she found a bill for an adult content subscription, and things went downhill fast. She jumped to conclusions, thinking someone must have gotten into my bank account. So, she took it upon herself to contact the bank and report fraudulent actions, which led to my account being frozen. But she didn't stop there.
Since I'm self-employed, she also thought it wise to ring up the Revenue office, filling them in about the incident. Consequently, I was subjected to an investigation to verify the authenticity of all my accounts and business transactions. Her defense was, “I know my darling child wouldn't buy such content”. Can you believe it? And I'm 21 years old!
49. Out Of Service
This all went down right before I finished high school. All the men in my mum's family were tied to some kind of service like the Navy or Army. So, my aunt, thinking she had my best interests at heart, decided to fake applications to the Marine Corps and the Navy for me, since I didn't have a job or college lined up.
A couple of weeks after my birthday, I received a phone call inviting me for an evaluation test. My aunt had spread the word to all my uncles, telling them how thrilled I was to serve, and how I was eagerly waiting to become part of something much larger than myself. However, when I discovered her actions, I was outraged.
I immediately called her and firmly explained that what she did was completely out of line. I acknowledged my deep respect for those who serve in the army, but clarified it wasn't the path for me. I expressed my immense disappointment in her for falsifying an application, simply on the assumption that it would lead me to a better future!
I then severed ties with her and explained the real story to my uncles. Shockingly, two of them supported her actions. In order to distance myself from this whole situation, I decided to relocate up North, far from most of my family.
My parents were far too forthcoming when it came to "the birds and the bees". Openness about this type of stuff should create a sense of safety and confidence, not unease, nor should it be forced upon anyone before they're ready. My parents started these conversations early; I was given an extensive explanation when I was only seven.
My mom handed me an entire book on the subject, invited me to ask any doubts, all in response to a single question I'd asked about a word. But then it got worse. My mom once asked me if I wanted any adult stuff and even offered my sister her old, used ones. That was unhygienic for sure. She also had this habit of playfully hitting my backside, complimenting my body. It took several years and constant requests for her to eventually stop doing it.
She'd even interject my sister's dates when she was just 14-16 years old, offering contraceptives. This approach only led my sister to feel obligated to use them, even when her dates were not heading down that path. Meanwhile, my dad was similarly inappropriate but didn't share information in the same explicit and vulgar manner as my mom.