My meddling mom — Abigail Hall column

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It was bound to happen eventually. My two sisters have managed to enter into serious, sustainable relationships, and here I am ó odd girl out.
Oh, it doesn’t bother me. I’m having a wonderful time being noncommittal. College is finished, and now I have the whole world to explore. The endeavor of finding a nice man to settle down with isn’t exactly at the top of my list right now. Fortunately, someone else has swooped in to ensure that this task isn’t ignored: my dear, sweet, meddlesome mother.
It seems that all mothers are constantly trying to measure how involved they should become in the lives of their children. It’s natural to hope your offspring make the best life decisions. So how much help do they need with their decisions through high school? Or college? Leave them to their own devices at this age, and there’s no telling what they might come home with.
One of my mother’s greatest achievements is the successful game of matchmaker that she played with my younger sister, who was in high school at the time, and a certain boy.
The poor guy never had a chance. At a coffee shop concert, Mom zeroed in like a hawk, bribing my sister’s best friend into delivering a counterfeit letter, “signed” by my sister, asking the target what his plans were for later that evening.
When approached, my sister vehemently denied writing the letter and insisted that her friend return the bribe money. Still, beginnings were sparked, and my sister has been dating this guy ever since. All right, Mom. Mission accomplished.
I found the whole thing hilarious at the time. I didn’t realize that all sights would now be turned toward me, the middle daughter: so nice, so promising, and most importantly, so single. Watch out eligible bachelors. Here comes … my mother.
I must say there are benefits to mom’s scheming. I can’t count how many free trips to different cities I have gone on while following boys. (I seem to have a preference for traveling musicians, and this is a preference she fully supports. Who knew?) It’s as if I have my own expense account: all gas and food is paid for as long as I am in the business of pursuing the man of her choosing.
Still, my mom’s involvement in my life seemed annoying at first. I’m a big girl, after all, and perfectly capable of starting my own relationships. But soon, I realized that it truly makes her happy to involve herself in my love life, so I let her, sort of. I give her updates on my progress every once in a while. She’s pleased, and I have to say I’m pretty satisfied with the way things are going, as well.So, my advice to all 20-something ladies who wish their mothers would get out of their hair: Stop complaining and start taking advantage. Value her advice. Let her meddle a little bit. Like it or not, she’s probably a little bit wiser than you.Of course, the trick is to sometimes make Mom think that what you want is what she wants. After that, you’re golden.
Contact Abigail Hall at