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… and the best actress award goes to, Mommy!
Mothers – the world would be distraught without them. A mother is the first person we come to learn and love in this world, from the moment that we start growing within her, and the first time she holds us in her arms. Seeing as things are the way they are, it might be difficult for a lot of us to admit that anything could be tricky in this relationship! Sure, our culture believe in idolising mothers, but mothers are also just people… with the same faults and shortcomings as every one else! As we grow older, we learn to look at mothers in more practical terms: they can be cunning, they can be manipulative, and they sure know how to get their way with their kids!
But just how did women learn to do these things?
Women Evolved Different from Men
Women evolved in closed spaces. As man became a more civil animal, as he started moving into caves from the jungles, and into make-shift houses from caves, and so on, women evolved to stay within the house (unlike men who went out hunting, food-gathering, and learnt to be alone). This was primarily because once women got pregnant, it restricted their movement. Later, as the child was born, women were required to stay within the house and take care of the little human being.
As time passed, women from different caves, started gathering together and interacting – and that is how women evolved into the more ‘social’ sex that actively engaged in talking and forging friendships, as opposed to men – who had to spend most of their time in silence, lest they scare ‘dinner’ away and fail to hunt it!
Women hence evolved to be better at managing relationships. They understood the importance of ‘keeping peace’ and still getting their way. In short – they learnt the important life-skills of ‘manipulation’ and ‘diplomacy’.
Yep. That’s right.
9 Lines Moms Use To Get Their Way Around Kids
Having said that, how fair is it to use these skills on your own child? Well, fair or not, all of us mommies are guilty of having been the drama queen sometime or the other! Here are 9 things many drama mothers say or do to get their children do exactly what they want them to do!
1. Blaming it on age/fatigue
Common Line Used: ‘Ab yeh sab mujhse nahi hota beta, thoda toh taras khao apni maa pe.’
It is true – moms do a lot of things around the house, irrespective of whether they are housewives or working moms. But that doesn’t mean you should make your child feel guilty about it na. But that’s exactly what we all do – we use our age, our fatigue to guilt our children into doing things for us! Well, mommy can sometimes take her liberties, right – and truth be told, this trick works because our little ones love us so much!
2. Acting hurt
Common Line Used: ‘Aisa karoge tum apni maa ke saath?’
This is probably one of the oldest tricks in the book. When our children do something we disapprove, or when they refuse to do something we want them to, we act hurt. We act like what they just said or did (or rather didn’t do) has hurt us so deeply that we might never recover! And our poor little children fall for it each time!
Common Line Used: ‘Achhaa? Aisa? Thike toh aaj se main bhi yeh nahi karungi.’
When guilt and hurt do not work, moms come down to practical terms. If children do not finish their lunch, moms will refuse to give them lunch the next day. If children do not finish their homework at a given time, moms refuse to help them with it when they actually sit down to do it. Non-cooperation might have brought us freedom, but moms use it in a whole different way to achieve a completely new range of things!
4. The silent treatment
Common Line Used: ‘Agar tumne yeh nahi kiya, main tumse baat nahi karungi.’
This one has been running for generations and generations. In fact, most of us will admit to have been on the suffering end of this particular trick too. This is interestingly one of the first ‘manipulative’ tricks that kids learn to – in the form of katti-batti. Talk about learning from parents, huh?
5. Threatening / Fear of exposure in front of relatives and friends
Common Line Used: ‘Mere marne ke baad hi akal aani hai tumhe!’ OR ‘Nalayak hai meri aulad!’
Let’s be honest – haven’t we at times tried to embarrass our kids in front of our relatives or their friends, in order to get them to listen to us and do what we want? Yeah – put a bunch of moms together in their room, and depending on the initial dialogue, the conversation will pan in either of two directions: how their son/daughter is the most ideal child that ever was born on this planet, or how Karma has acted out and they have been cursed with the worst one ever!
6. Bribery/Holding a carrot
Common Line Used: ‘Dekho, tum yeh kaam karoge, toh main tumhe chocolate/extra pocket-money dungi.’
All moms are ‘guilty’ of this charge. Most of the times the bribe/carrot is a chocolate. In modern times however, it can be extra TV/Internet time, more movies to see, more game time, etc. And being mothers, we know full well just which bribe/carrot to offer in which circumstance… and our children fall for it each and every time. In fact, sometimes this is even extended to bribing our nieces and nephews!
7. Puppy face
Common Line Used: ‘Tu mera raja beta hai na? Peeeeeeeesh!’
This one may not work for everything, but it works for getting your children to do small errands: switch the lights off, get a glass of water, bring the TV remote control, etc. Almost always, it gets the job done.
8. Gaining sympathy by getting upset
Common Line Used: ‘Main sab kuchh karti hun, sab keh liye khana banati hun, tum itna nahi kar sakte?’
This is another way in which mothers like to take their kids on a guilt trip – by enlisting all the tonnes and scores of things they do for us. And the biggest thing somehow always seems to be food. A lot of energy and time goes into cooking food for the family every day. And most mothers use ‘food’ as a common weapon against children – either by trying to gain sympathy, or by being mad about not wanting to eat what they cook, or getting angry because no one wants to help them cook. Talk about tit-for-tat for all the picky eating tantrums our kids throw at the dinner table!
9. Pampering and Praising
Common Line Used: ‘Tum yeh kitna achhaa karte ho! OR Main tumhare liye XYZ karun/laun/banaun?’
A post that was recently circulating on social media said
‘If all your wishes are being granted, don’t be thankful, be suspicious!’
The quote talks about not being overjoyed and remaining grounded. However, when it comes to mothers, the quote holds true word-for-word! Haven’t we all, at some point, pampered and praised our kids in exchange of getting them to do things for us? You do not get if you do not give, and this is exactly what we mothers do to our kids – we give in order to get!
So those were some of the most common Mom-manipulations we know! While many of us may not openly admit to using these lines on our children, we secretly know we all do! But as they say – all’s fair in love and war, and most of the things we say and do as mothers emanate from a universal and overwhelming feeling of love for our children. If it is going to do a ton of good, a little bit of ‘mother drama’ won’t hurt anybody, right? All in a day’s work!