Sexist Mother?

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Faber

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#1
OK, so as a disclaimer of some sort. I do love my mom despite our differences. This is just me ranting about one of said differences. This one is just becoming more obvious and is pissing me off more and more as I get older.

OK, so my mom has always cared about her looks and reputation. That has been obvious ever since I was little. So, she has tried to have my sister and me to act a certain way. Normal stuff like being modest and behaving properly and shit like that. Looking back at elementary school, it was rather normal except for a few things. My sister and I don't have interest in mainstream stuff all too often (i.e. hanging out on these kinds of sites, and liking to go to conventions and such). Pretty much we grew up to be a couple of awkward nerds (not exactly what she wanted).

Starting in about eighth grade, my mother started telling me that I should be wearing makeup and taking more care in how I look. She pretty much wanted me to turn into a prissy kind of girl. She also teased me about my stomach (I was on the heavier side back) by patting it and saying 'suck it in', and would give me a bad time about the bad acne I had back then. I pretty much looked like the girl from princess diaries before her make over. I admit that I wasn't the prettiest damn thing in the world back then but I was only fourteen. I highly doubt that it was completely necessary that I cared back then. She would also tell me that she desperately wished that I did sports and cared about reputation and shit.

Since I've entered high school, she has only gotten worse. ( At least she doesn't tease me about my stomach anymore). She now bugs me to wear a skirt to every damn family function or a situation where her workmates will see the two of us. This especially bugs me since my appearance doesn't matter to her at all if I'm not in the aforementioned situations or am not going to see any male peers. She says 'it's inappropriate for a young lady' if I say or do something that is at all unladylike (Being crass, blunt, etc. ) Recently, whenever there're going to 'cute boys', she tells us to wear makeup and be cute etc. This pisses me off because I don't believe that I should get dolled up just to impress some boys that I've never met. It makes no sense. I should doll up when I want/ absolutely need to. I may just being selfish and childish but I still stand by my point.
 
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#2
Given how many girls have such awful self-esteem issues and feel like they always have to impress people anyway, this is really irksome... >:/

I'm glad it hasn't gotten to you all that much (or at least it doesn't seem like it, based on this post). I mean, yeah that sounds annoying, but at least you still have the self-confidence to know that you don't always need to be the perfect "lady" that your mother wants. And that's definitely a good thing.

I've met people before who were all kind of fucked up about their looks and constantly trying to make sure they were presentable (especially for important events) because of similar upbringings. It's good to see that you didn't turn out that way. Good on you for being you. <3
 

Jorick

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#3
Nah, you're not being selfish or childish at all. If anything those two adjectives apply to your mother for telling you to act in ways you don't want to for her benefit. Don't let anyone, not even your mother, convince you that you're wrong for being yourself.
 

Gwazi Magnum

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#4
Like others have said, you're just being true to yourself.
Don't let your mother's personal preferences get in the way of your own preferences.

And just as a side note, speaking as a Heterosexual Male I tend to like the girls who are more blunt, crass and don't obsess over stuff like skirts and make-up FAR more than the girls who are all proper, skirt crazy and make-up heavy.
And I know plenty of other guys who feel the same way in that regard, so the whole "You need to be proper for boys to like you" reasoning doesn't even hold true.
 
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#5
And just as a side note, speaking as a Heterosexual Male I tend to like the girls who are more blunt, crass and don't obsess over stuff like skirts and make-up FAR more than the girls who are all proper, skirt crazy and make-up heavy.
And I know plenty of other guys who feel the same way in that regard, so the whole "You need to be proper for boys to like you" reasoning doesn't even hold true.
That sort of thing seems like somewhat of a product-of-the-times issue. Perhaps your mother is just stuck in the past, OP. Perhaps she's just remembering how she was raised. I can see girls being raised that way a generation or two ago, but it just doesn't seem to make sense today.
 

Gwazi Magnum

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#6
That sort of thing seems like somewhat of a product-of-the-times issue. Perhaps your mother is just stuck in the past, OP. Perhaps she's just remembering how she was raised. I can see girls being raised that way a generation or two ago, but it just doesn't seem to make sense today.
Somewhat. I do agree that a lot of it probably has roots in how past generations were.

But there are also a decent amount of guys who also prefer the traditional preppy girly-girl.
And generally speaking from personal experience, those guys tend to be the ones who hold higher levels of popularity.
So when parents look at modern "social success" those are the types of people they're looking at.
 

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#7
I wonder how your mother would react to being told "Life isn't all about impressing boys, and I'd be happier not pretending to be something I'm not, just to get attention from people I don't know." Or maybe how she would respond when asked, "What do you have against me trying to be happy with myself?"

Probably not well, I'm assuming. But maybe it might get her thinking. Sucks that you have to deal with this sort of behavior, though. When I was young, my parents weren't much better.
 

Kestrel

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#8
Parents often project their own impression of happiness on their children. With every generation gaining more freedom in how they choose to live their lives, the amount of options becomes increasingly harder to comprehend for those not keeping up with them. We as a society have progressed quite a bit from your mother's time. Gender equality, for one, had quite the impact on the dating scene (even if it's something stupid like arguing over who gets to pay for food) and the interwebz makes it far easier to meet people and form new communities. Especially if said communities are based on something that is or was considered a niche or shameful. Heck, like ten years ago no way in hell I would tell a girl I was into videogames on a first date. Now, half the time you can comfortably trashtalk about beating each other in mario kart halfway the first bottle of wine. That was not a thing back in highschool.

Prolly for a good reason too, my teenage mind would have gone into insanity-fucking-overdrive.

Times are changing a lot faster and when you get older, it can be hard to keep up with. The past is more known and comfortable, which is why many of us root our ideas and feelings in it. Letting go of that is quite difficult. That's not to say it's an okay thing to do to force your ideals onto someone else, it's just... Well, very human regardless.

I just felt like putting that out there. Other than that here's quotes I agree with.

I'm glad it hasn't gotten to you all that much (or at least it doesn't seem like it, based on this post). I mean, yeah that sounds annoying, but at least you still have the self-confidence to know that you don't always need to be the perfect "lady" that your mother wants. And that's definitely a good thing.
Don't let anyone, not even your mother, convince you that you're wrong for being yourself.

It's a good thing people type my thoughts for me, that way I don't have to.
 

Zen

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#9
I can definitely relate to this, as my mother stressed on me to look pretty and things of that ilk. Things she made me do was start wearing make up (encouraged me to do this when I was five) make me give up wearing tennis shoes and instead wear heals, even if I was in a lot of pain, and stop hanging out with my guy friends. It is also unfortunate that my mother believes that men are the superior gender, and she herself cannot love her body. She's a size zero and still thinks she's fat. She's tattooed her lips and a birth mark because without that stuff she would feel self conscious.

You are not feeling childish or selfish. If anything you are making your stance as an individual with your own rights, values, and needs. Your mother needs to respect this and I highly suggest you make that known in the most civil way possible. Just because you are a woman does not mean you need to be cute, or dress up, or kiss up to people because of your gender/sex. You are your own person.
 
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