Grandparents who say funny, but slightly scary things...

  1. Hi everyone!

    I spent Thanksgiving at home this year. My grandmother, who is in her mid-eighties, said the funniest, but slightly scary, thing to me over the break. I should preface this by saying that it was about my relationship with my boyfriend, whom I've been with for eight years.

    I was sitting down in our living room, watching TV with her. All of a sudden, she starts asking me if we were every going to get married and have kids. She said that I should have kids before I get too old (keep in my mind that I just turned 27 today), and that I should make my parents take care of them (we're Asian). She continued by saying that she knows how busy I am with work and that I should just come back every other month to visit them. This went on for about an hour before I got up and left the room.

    So, there are a few things here...admitedly, I was really angry and annoyed at first. EVERYONE we know is pressuring us to get married just because we've been together for so long. I think that we're both too young (we're both 27) and definitely not ready to marry, much less have a child together. It's frustrating that everyone is pressuring us.

    The funny part of the "lecture" was that she said I should just let my parents take care of our children. I know that Asian cultures have this concept of family elders rearing children, but having grown up here in the US, I find that it's a hard concept to grasp. I know my grandmother took care of me when I was very little (up until I was about two). So, in some way, I find the conversation amusing in hindsight - the cultural and generational differences. My boyfriend, who is caucasian, thought it was bizarre.

    So, have any of you experienced something like this?
  2. As an asian myself, I think that our cultures run deep into our roots, and I think one must KNOW and embrace one's cultures. BUT, if you're grown up in a different country, and have got a different and new upbringing in a different culture, you should do what you please!! hehe. i figured how embarrassing that must have been for you!! esp the whole "marry before you're too old" thing.
  3. I got married before I got too old because I had been dating for a long time and came under the same pressures as you - grandparents and parents going on about when we were going to tie the knot. And you know what happens after you get married? Then they start hounding you to have kids next. Like "when are we going to see some little ones?".

    So, yes, I got married, yes, I had the kid.
    No, it didn't work out.

    I was left with the kid, and the resulting economic problems. The relatives who exerted such a lot of emotional pressure/blackmail on me were by then too old/too unwell to do any of the 'helping out' they promised.

    So do what feels right for YOU to do. And do it when YOU want it.

    If someone starts talking about it, nod your head earnestly and pretend you are listening (this is the way to do it in the proper Asian fashion) and taking good note of what they are saying. But do what you want to do.
  4. ^ITA. I simply smile and nod, without being rude or making it obvious in any way that I'm not going to follow their advice. I'm 27 and asian, and the pressure placed on me to marry is intense. I've had to fight hard for my independence, though, and there is nothing better than doing what you want to do with your life. If you know you're not ready yet, definitely run with that feeling and own it. You'll know when it's right for you to settle down. I think once an Asian woman turns 21, the pressure starts to slowly build, depending on the exact culture and her upbringing, until the woman either caves in or decides to do something about it, as you're doing by being polite. Always assert yourself.
  5. the worst i have ever had was being sent away from the table as a teenager bcuz my grandfather started telling crude jokes/stories

    honestly i'm 24 and married, i would be thrilled if my family started going we like him, marry him, and have children
    maybe it's a cultural difference but I would be over the moon.
  6. Marriage is one thing. But you should only entertain CHILDREN when YOU are up to it, no one else. Do the math.
  7. LOL Not just you getting too old, but you wouldn't want to wait till your parents got too old and thus get stuck with changing all those diapers and scraping all that crayon off the stove yourself!
  8. Haha...maybe that's only your grandmother's opinion...have you asked your parents?

    My parents (asian) keeps telling me that I shouldn't get married so early and shouldn't have kids so early. My mom keeps saying that girls nowadays don't have to marry early. I'm getting married next year, and I joke with her that when I have kids, mom and dad will have to help take care of them. They're not that thrilled with the idea right now. :p Whereas, the fiance, who's caucasian, his parents keeps reminding me that when we have kids, we have to remember to bring to them too, and not only keep them with my parents.

    The key thing is really communiation. don't get too stressed out! :flowers:
  9. Thanks for all the comments...I love hearing about how other people are dealing with similar situations.

    My parents have asked a few times, but the pressure all around is getting intense. In some ways, their comments are starting to sink in, and I'm getting slightly paranoid that my boyfriend won't ever ask. We've talked about it at length, but I don't think it will happen any time soon. I would like to get married, but just not in as much of a hurry as other people.
  10. Follow your heart. That's all I gotta say. You know what will work for you.
  11. Oh...grandparents come from a different world. One of my grandmothers is 90 and worked for Boeing making airplane wings during WWII and she is very rascist against Japanese. What's kind of funny is that I have two Japanese cousins who she is totally fine with. I think in her mind "japanese" (and she uses the derogatory word) are the people who bombed Pearl Harbor and were our enemy - way back when. She hasn't come to terms with Japan today...our allies and an amazing culture.

    My grandfather has some quirks that come from his time as well but he is really good about not forcing his kids or grandkids to comply with his beliefs. Although sometimes I wish he were more forceful with me as a teenager (I didn't have a father) - maybe I would've stayed out of trouble!

    I am sure that your grandmother was only saying those things out of love for you and wanting what is best for you (in her mind) but if you are happy with the direction of your life - explain that to her. Hopefully that will be enough and if not...chalk it up to crazy grandma talk and ignore it going forward. :smile:
  12. My grandmother told me I suck at playing cards! How do you respond to that?!?