updated 28 Nov 2011, 16:41
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Sun, Jan 30, 2011
The New Paper
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When Mummy is buddy too
by Crystal Abidin

HANDS up all the gals who would gladly go for a "girls night out" with mum in tow.
Embarrassed? Awkward? Too close for comfort?

Well, not for 18-year-old student Sandy Likitdachavongs, especially since her mother is younger than most of her peers' parents.

The Singaporean of Thai-Chinese parentage is more than happy to hang out with her hip mum, Ms San Lai, 34.

"Sometimes, she hangs out with my friends, sitting at a bar having a social drink (and) watching soccer," said Ms Lai.

The duo even partied together at ZoukOut 2010 last month.

Being serious movie buffs, they also watch movies together, about once a week.

Said Ms Lai: "There were a couple of times we ended up (watching) three movies back to back. We would end up at McDonald's for ice cream at 1am, then talk and joke as we took our 20-minute walk home."

In fact, mother and daughter have such close rapport, they seem more like sisters.

Sandy said they "do not have a very big generation gap", and attributes their close relationship to their "similar personalities".

What do their friends say about them being like gal pals?

"My friends are generally envious of how my mum is quite easy on me... They say that our relationship is cool," Sandy said.

Between them, no topic is off-limits. Sandy said she even "alerts" her mum when she sees a cute guy.

She said: "If I tell mum '2 o'clock', she will turn to that direction and analyse the guy."

Added Ms Lai: "Yes! We check out guys together and it's very fun."

But don't think that Sandy can get away with anything. Ms Lai said she still nags and disciplines her daughter and expects Sandy to inform her whenever she goes out with friends.

Another mother-daughter pair who get along famously are Ms Eleen Peh, 46, and her daughter, Cindy Goh, 23.

"Whenever we go out shopping, people will ask if we are sisters," said Cindy, a former flight attendant who is now taking a beautician's course.

They window shop at malls "four times a week", as well as bake and cook together.

Said Cindy: "My mum even holds my hand when we go out shopping."

That they are, well, just two decades apart - and not that much older - helps in her parenting, reasoned Ms Peh, a housewife and mother of three.

"I feel I am less authoritative than most mothers. I can reason things nicely with Cindy and she listens to me," she said.

Cindy agreed: "Mummy won't yell at me or beat me. She will reason with me instead, talk things out, make me understand her point of view."

So close are the pair that they do girly things together - like sharing beauty tips and practising their make-up skills on each other. Cindy even helps to "curl and style" mummy's hair.

And she still turns to mum for approval in her dressing.

Said Cindy: "Before I leave the house, I will always ask mummy if my top is too revealing or if my skirt is too short. She will make sure I am dressed fashionably, but decently."

Mother and daughter are planning to set up a spa and beauty centre "in the near future", and are now scouting for a good spot.


This article was first published in The New Paper.

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