African parents are known for being strict disciplinarians that never spare the rod and when they do, naughty children get a serious tongue lashing. Some of the phrases uttered in intense moments appear mean. Only later do we find some comic relief in them.
Some of the signature statements that almost every African child has heard are:
Work hard so you can buy me a car
They drop this phrase when you appear to be joking in your studies. It will be followed by a dramatic lecture on how you won’t be able to take care of them when they age. They will also keep records of things you have destroyed in the house and add them to a list after the car you owe them.
Why can’t you become like so and so?
This is an African parent’s way of humbling you no matter how well off you are in life. There will always be a cousin, friend or sibling they will fix in a conversation, who is doing better than you.
Growing up, you will also be in constant competition with your peers due to pressure from your African parent. Being able to brag about the achievements of their children is what African parents live for. Anything lower will be pointed out and you will be reminded of others doing it better.
Don’t focus on relationships now, study first
There is always a certain age African parents set for when their children can start getting into relationships. Before then, the mention of a boy or girl will get you into serious trouble. They will support their timeline with phrases on how you should study first, get a job and then ‘those things’ will follow.
Interestingly, the same parents will start asking when you’re introducing someone to them the moment you get to your mid-twenties.
If you continue like this, I will send you to the village
For some reason, going to the village, for urban dwellers, has always been a big threat in an African household. And it works wonders. Whoever gets this threat will immediately change whatever behavior landed them that statement.
“By mistake” is not an excuse in an African household. When you do something wrong, it is assumed you had every intention of doing it. So, when that glass mistakenly slips from your hand, your mother will most likely react by telling you to break everything else.
Pass me the remote
A remote is never within the reach of an African parent. To them, it is not something they can find even if they sat on it. You will always be at their expense when they need to use the remote. They will get you out of another room to pass a remote next to them and boy should you hand that remote with a frown....
I was always number one
In a bid to say you are privileged and not working hard, African parents will narrate how they were at the top of their class despite walking 30 kilometres to school. They will then describe extremely harsh conditions they faced growing up yet you, with all the opportunities, cannot top your class.
While African parents may come off as extreme, they always have our best interests at heart.
Featured image; Maraji's World