Indian parents say the most ridiculous and outrageous things at times, just to prove their point, or get their children to obey them. In most cases, Indian dads hold unreasonably high expectations from their kids, and almost anything that isn’t an NCERT book or a help book is considered a distraction. Indian moms though, are extremely emotional, sensitive, adorably (well, most times) over-protective and hold onto old-age traditions like our lives depend on them. If you’re an Indian kid who’s grown up in a ‘sanskari’ family, you’re definitely going to be able to relate to all these phrases that are brown parents’ favourites:
- “You’re going out? Who? When? Where?” a.k.a I need everyone’s janam kundali before I give an approval
As an Indian kid, you’ve most likely had to ask your parents every time your friends invited you to a party, or even just to go out and relax someplace nice for a while. And in order to get your parents’ permission, your mother will need to know all about who you’re going out with, where you’re going, when you’ll be back, and also why you need to go out for lunch when you get food at home. And if at all there’s a name on that list of friends that she hasn’t heard of before, she is going to need to know all about them before you can leave. “Soniya? Who’s this Soniya? I’ve never heard that name before…”
- “You don’t feel well? All because of that damn phone you’re always on! I swear, I’m going to throw it away someday”
Doesn’t matter if you have a headache, a stomach ache, or if you’ve scraped your knee. If you’re an Indian kid, the root of all illness is the innocent smart phone. Doesn’t matter if they use their phone just as much as you, or even more than you with all the ‘family groups’ on whatsapp that they spam all day, but our smart phones are always the ones being blamed.
- “Look at Sharma Ji’s children”
Now, there’s always the neighbor’s kid, or that cousin from IIT that you’re always getting compared to. Maybe the universe is just trying to mess with us, but there’s ALWAYS a kid in the family that your parents are constantly using to set an example. We know what Sharma Ji’s children are up to behind Sharma uncle’s back, but our parents would never understand. Comparison is key.
- “I’ll get you a warm glass of milk with haldi (turmeric)”
No matter what injury it is. Might not even be an injury, could be just a cold, or a tummy ache. Just as the cause of all problems is the smart phone, the solution to all of them is Haldi doodh. Indian parents have immense faith in the magical healing properties of turmeric milk. Turmeric is anti-inflammatory, but you really don’t have to give me that disgusting drink for everything!
- “It’s Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday/Monday/the sun has set. Don’t cut nails, don’t wash your hair, don’t eat meat”
Yep, the days are different across different cultures, but most houses believe in these superstitions. And not just these, but Indian parents in general believe in some really weird superstitions. And if you don’t want to get lectured on your rebellious, ungrateful, rude and obnoxious behavior now that you’re a teenager/adult, it’s best that you just follow them.
- “Thappad khaana hai? (Do you want to get slapped?)
Having grown up in Indian households, most of us are familiar with this phrase. It would be shocking and unacceptable to a white kid, but us, we’re used to it. The moment we mess up, (which is A LOT), we can expect the threat. It’s the easier way for our parents to save us all the explanation, rationalization, negotiation, consolation, and basically just ask us to check ourselves.
- “Come out of your room for once and socialize” With weird relatives.
Indian parents never hesitate to push their kids into uncomfortable conversations with relatives. Relatives who will casually joke about how you’re getting old and ask you awkward questions about when you want to get married, relatives who will ‘jokingly’ criticize your career choice (only if you’ve chosen anything other than wanting to become an engineer, doctor, lawyer, or IAS officer), relatives who will also very casually pass snide remarks about your horrible cooking, your weight, your height, your complexion… just about anything. Relatives like these, who needs enemies? And our parents ask us why we’re always holed up in the room and never want to socialize with our wonderful uncles and aunties.
- “BECAUSE I’M YOUR MOTHER/FATHER!”
This is the trump card. You’re having a heated argument that’s been going on for a while, and just when you think you might be winning, they use THE phrase. Any valid, logical arguments you have made till now, or you were going to make are now invalid. There is no point, you’ve lost the battle. End of conversation, and they win.