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Take That, Tiger Mom: Chronicles of a Romanian Mother

2011 February 5

With all the discussion regarding Amy Chua’s memoir detailing the pressure-cooker parenting style favored in Chinese culture, for better or for worse, it got me reflecting on my equally unique – though sure to be less controversial – experience with my 100% Romanian mom.

Romanian moms have an innate fear of the world around us, and their children being out in it. They obsessively follow the “crime” section in the news. They forward you every email chain about men hiding behind your car at the gas station that has ever seen the inside of an inbox. And many a conversation starts with “did you see that lunatic on 20/20 last night?”

Romanian moms don’t get pb and j. They prefer a menu of smoked salmon and liver pate sandwiches crammed into your little lunchbox. They serve you Perrier instead of Juicy Juice. And they are the only people who walk into McDonald’s once every five years or so, and order the McLobster.

Romanian moms believe in beauty. They indulge in therapeutic mud baths, deep red lipstick, and covering their greys like it’s a religion. But, in turn, they make sure their daughters do as well. Which means a constant critique of your brows, your nails, your jeans, and a not so subtle hint at the ripe age of 25 that you “may want to invest in an eye cream.”

Finally, Romanian moms have a sense of pessimism like no other.

They are constantly expecting one of three major things to happen: cancer, losing a job, or cancer.

They stress over money, health, the weather.

They don’t just see the glass half-empty, they practically don’t see it at all.

But the good thing about Romanian moms? That glass is ALWAYS full of wine 😉

The classic Romanian mom: mine.

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