Saturday February 2, 2013
CNY — singles’ most awkward time
By YVONNE LIM
PETALING JAYA: Despite the “love letters” (kuih kapit) and a glorious spread of food, some things are still hard to swallow for many young men and women who are home for Chinese New Year.
To these people, it's the awkward time when well-meaning relatives pop the question: When are you getting married?
Senior advertising account executive Wong Ju Lee, 29, said her relatives and family friends never failed to ask her why she was single.
“I usually tell them jokingly that I am waiting for my older sister, who is also still single, to get married first,” said Wong, who acknowledged that she was waiting for “the right one”.
Lawyer Melissa Soon, 26, said she once responded that she could not decide which guy she liked better when inquisitive relatives wanted to know why she did not have a boyfriend.
“I think my answer gave them a shock. They did not ask me such questions for a while,” said Soon, who is currently in a relationship.
Writer Lee May Yen said she hated being asked such questions because they made it sound like getting a boyfriend was a necessity.
“If it happens, it happens. But whether I have a boyfriend or not does not define who I am as a person,” said the 28-year-old from Malacca.
“The questions do not stop after you get married. After that, you get asked, Why are you taking so long to have a baby?'”
Purchasing manager Peter Yap, 37, said such questions might not stop despite his wife being pregnant now with their first child.
“After you have your first kid, they would ask When is the next one?'” he said.
However, he acknowledged that people probably asked such questions to “break the ice”.
“They think that questions like these are better than asking how much you earn or something more personal,” he said.
Software developer Ho Juwen said his standard line to deflect questions about his marital status was: “I'm still young.”
“It has worked so far in keeping away more probing questions,” said Ho, who lives in Australia, but recently came home for a family reunion where he was not spared the “onslaught”.