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15 Things Singaporean Parents Say That Are All Too Real

Parents can sometimes say the darnest things, but that is what makes us uniquely Singaporeans! We sussed out best quotes you’ve grown up hearing and/or are using on your own kids!

1. “Ah boy ah, can help mummy wash the dishes?”

Do you recall the times when your parents call you by anything except your real name – 20 years ago? From short forms to colloquial styles of language, your name’s not spared. 

2. “Finish your food ah, if not your husband or wife will have pimples!.”

3. “Wah, cannot finish your food ah? Do you know people in Africa don’t have food to eat?”

We’re sure these are familiar sayings in your household, even as a child years ago and now that you’re a parent yourself. What are the odds that these things actually survived through the decade and still works as well?

4. “You better behave, if not the police will catch you!”

5. “Don’t be naughty ah, or we’ll send you to the Karang guni man.”

Why does a Karang guni man (rag-and-bone man) sound really intimidating to our five-year-old selves?

6. “You know, last time mummy very popular one. Your dad is also very handsome.

7. “Please eat up your veggies, so you can become like Popeye, the Sailor Man!”

We know that eating our greens is beneficial for our skin and digestive system, but looking all macho like Mr Sailor Man? Hmm…

 8. “Only 99 ah? What happened to the one mark?”

9. “Wah, 78 only! Why can’t you be more like *inserts cousin’s name*? She has 83 marks for Math. Your dad and I will sign you up for the best Math tuition.”

Credit: www.findhometuition.com

Credit: www.findhometuition.com

Just one of the reasons why we weren’t too fond of the lunar new year visitations when we were students. Now we’re totally feeling what our children are going through..

10. “If you don’t brush your teeth, later become bo geh than you know!”

Okay, this is getting real.

11. “Ah girl, what do you want to be when you grow up? Better be a doctor or lawyer.”


12. “Don’t listen to mummy one more time, mummy don’t friend you already.”

Credit: www.pohtecktoes.com

Credit: www.pohtecktoes.com

Well, technically you’re our mum, and not our friend.

13. “What colour do you want your rotan cane to be? Got red, blue, yellow.. or you want green?”

14. “Don’t use your phone too much! The radiation’s very bad for you.”

Technically, we didn’t have smartphones when we were kids, so what’s with the struggles our kids are facing now?

…when we’re all grown up.

15. “When are you getting married? I want to see my grandchildren before I die, you know!”

Credit: www.scene.sg

Credit: www.scene.sg

Remember the times when your parents had to breathe on your necks, “No boyfriend/ girlfriend till you’re 21”? Come 21, they’d be asking why were we single.

We hope you like our version of what our local parents love to say! What are some other things you tell your children or grow up hearing? Share with us in the comments below!