Auntyji: The weekly call to mum

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Dear Auntyji

I am a little hesitant about bringing you my problem, but I have struggled with it for the last six months with no solutions of my own. (I am eager to hear your solution, at the same time that I am concerned you will scold me.)

I am a grown man with a family of my own and I am generally very happy because I have many blessings in my life. I had a very happy childhood also. My mum is now in her late 70s and here is where my problems are. She is widowed and does not live with us. I love her very much and make a point of calling her once a week. But each time I call, she spends the entire hour talking about the most boring of things. She complains about her neighbour stealing her lemons from her garden. She complains about my cousin who chose to marry a gora. She complains about her arthritis, her gout, the taste of her mango pickles, climate change, lack of respect for elders, the list goes on and on.

Auntyji, it is tiring listening to her. What to do? I try to steer her to neutral topics but no luck.

Auntyji says

Arre ^*$%*@, sharam nahi aati? Did you want your mother to be a Bollywood film who is there to entertain you?  Did you want her to be a jigsaw puzzle that you need to solve? Did your mother complain when you were 4 years old and learning to talk and she had to listen to you go on and on about the most boring of things? Did she complain when you asked her five thousand questions even when she was probably really tired – possibly of raising a kumbukht like you?

Your mother gave you a happy childhood. Now that she is in her twilight years and probably has less than a decade left, the very least you can do is to just listen to her. Stop judging her – she has done her bit by raising a human being who is not a serial killer. So just stop, open your ears, zip your mouh and listen to her. There are many people reading this right now who wish they could hear their mother’s voice one more time, and here you are, saying that you are bored.

Your mother has earned the right to bore you to tears because god knows, you probably did the same to her for the first 20 years of your life. It’s time to pay her back with love and respect. Just listen to her, and cherish the moment. It won’t last forever and it will end sooner than you expect.

READ ALSO: AUNTYJI: Who put ricotta in my palak paneer?

The original Australian sub-continental agony aunt. Email: info@indianlink.com.au

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