I know there are so much more pressure on women’s look in South Korea than Midwestern America (where I grew up), and I also know the place of my residence is known as the mecca of plastic surgery in the entire South Korea. But still, I had too much trouble with my parents because of this.
My mom just wouldn’t stop talking about my looks. When I was working in the office, she kept going on and on and on and on about how I look fat and unattractive. I said my BMI index is fine. Of course this didn’t stop her. Fortunately, she became aware of my LSAT stress and the effect of it (= losing weight) so she stopped talking about it. Then another issue came up – clothing.
As someone grew up in Midwestern America, I really don’t care much about clothing, unless I am going some kind of social or formal occasion. As long as I wear something that is not embarrassing and appropriate of the time, place and occasion, that’s it. For other times, I should be able to wear whatever I want, and people shouldn’t give a damn about it either – especially when I am going to spend next 5 hours sitting in the library, struggling with LSAT questions. Think about it – do you want to wear fluffy spring maxi dress with toe-tightening shoes when you know you’ll have to walk with a heavy backpack and sit down for more than 4 hours? I know I don’t.
But she thought differently. And she just can’t say it in a nice way either.
In addition, she’d always say how I need to get a plastic surgery on here and there. Unfortunately, my stress resistance gauge was already at its peak, all thanks to LSAT. For several times, I said to her without getting upset, that all I am focusing now is LSAT and such, so it would be very nice if she can at least tone it down. She said yes. But again, of course, she wouldn’t listen. She listened to me only after I screamed and cried and threw stuff around. Then she accused me how I did not tell her beforehand. Oh gawd.
I don’t want to be a drama queen – the thing is, she’d listen only when I become a drama queen.
Then there’s my dad.
I know I blogged a lot about my dad. Since then, I think he figured out how to keep a safe distance from me, which is really nice. But then, he’s still awkward. One day, I suspect my mom talked him about how stressed out I am (and thus behaved like a drama queen…*facepalm* if only she did not mention about clothing/plastic surgery again!!!) Then all of sudden, he started to get my backpack, and give me random neck massage. Uh, thanks, but really this is awkward, and it wouldn’t magically make you a caring dad, so the best way is just let me be and give a bit of moral support. That will do.
I was on my way to the local department store, and ran into my dad. We said hi and all. Then all of sudden, he started to mention how I should keep my upper and lower teeth together – because I’m not doing it, and it makes me look like an idiot. Oh thank you very much for your kind words.
I have been loosened my jaws intentionally, ever since the oriental medicine doctor (for non-Asian readers: in many parts of Asian countries, oriental medicine doctors ARE formally educated medical doctors with PhD, managed by governments) told me I put too much pressure on my jaws by tightening up way too much – all that anxiety, tensions and stress. Not only this affect my blood circulation, but it also made their treatment difficult – they couldn’t get the acupuncture needle in my jaws.
So I explained this. Then my dad told me how he doesn’t trust them and he knows better. I had enough comments about my looks from my own parents. I was annoyed. Making the matter worse, my mom was helping him along.
“Mom, dad, seriously, can we just stop talking about me?!?!”
Then my dad got upset because I “talked back,” and behaved in a rude way (I can’t really recall – as he started this, I really didn’t give a flying f*ck, thinking ‘here it goes again…’).
Here’s the funny thing. Though I have that problems with my mom, I somewhat understand her. You can tell she really cares about looks and such. But my dad isnt’ as sophisticated as my mom. He never ever helps with the house chore – he thinks as long as he dumps the bowls in the sink (without filling the water), he gets a big pat on his shoulder. He’d simply command “hey, you need to wipe the table” and walks away into his room. He never ever answers the home phone. He doesn’t even know how to make a tea out of teabag and a cup of hot water (I still can’t believe this).
He can’t keep his clothing together with time/place/occasion, nor social. His table manner isn’t great either (for this I am grateful to my mom) – he’d goggle with the water after we finish eating, he frequently makes sound when chewing, and he would jab his spoons into pretty much everything on the table. My mom or I would comment on this once in a while, but he never takes it seriously. I guess, for these reasons, sometimes it’s hard to take his “advice.” I can’t help myself thinking “so you are advising me on right clothing/posture/behavior while you can’t even dress properly or keep up with the table manner?” He admires the western lifestyle. At the same time, he can’t take his daughter who integrated the western lifestyle. Once, as we were watching some travel TV program on Belgium, he said “they have a lot more relaxed lifestyle than us. I think I will fit in there.” I almost laughed – you never know what it takes to be in the world of individualism, especially being prepared to cover your own butt for every situations.
Thinking about bringing my future fiance to my family dinner scares me because of this. If we have dinner at some restaurant, my dad won’t be natural at all, never enjoying it. He’d think it as a work, not as an enjoyable meal. If we bring him to our family dinner, then my future fiance will have to see my dad absolutely not keeping up with the table manner. Marrying off without notifying my parents is a really convincing option to me at this point.
I understand the parental care and love and all that stuff. But why can’t they just listen to me and give me some credit when I talk them nicely? Why only listen to be after I end up screaming like a drama queen? All I remember as a reply when I talk nicely was “shut up,” “you don’t know better,” “you’re crazy.” (which, by the way, would worked better if I were 5. But I am well over the legal age!) If you want someone to change something about them, you need to ask nicely.
For instance, you think your friend is wearing a bra that’s not for her, and you want her to change. There are two ways you can say.
“You need to get a new bra, because-“
1. you look like an old crackwhore in it.
2. your bra will affect your blood circulation negatively.
It’s pretty obvious which would work better. However, for some reason, my parents always go for #1. And they think while they can’t do #1 to others, to me it’s okay, because they are parents and I’m their daughter. For the same reason, I can’t do #1. I really don’t know why.
Since they never ever give any credit to what I say, maybe I should blame everything on how I forgot to have my magnesium drink. That’s right, I’ve been so stressed out, so I started to drink the magnesium supplement powder called the Natural Calm, which seems to work. And I forgot to drink it today. All my fault.