Please don’t make this mistake…

(image via)

This post is not related to personal finance in any way, but more of rant. Feel free to ignore my ramblings if that is what you’re after.

A few weeks ago, I was at my sister’s convocation, when something terrible happened.

I playing photographer for my sister and her friends, when one of her friends exclaimed, “Frugirl Sis, your mom looks like she could be your sister!”

Me, “That’s because I am her sister.”

…. (awkward moment)… Sister’s friend, “Well, I really thought you looked like her sister…”

Now, my mom is wonderful and beautiful woman,  but she has had 3 kids who are all in their mid to late twenties.   I couldn’t help but feel offended that my sister’s friend thought that I looked like someone who has a 24 year old kid.

Lesson:  If there is ever a doubt, err on the side of caution.

Fast forward to last weekend, I was having brunch with my girlfriend, J.  The waitress comes to take our order and takes J’s order first, then she turns to me and says, “And for mom?”

Gah!  Again, J’s mom is a wonderful and beautiful woman, but my friend is my age – 28 (though she does look young for her age), but still!  Her mom?!!  I was fuming the entire day! 😦

Am I being too sensitive in both instances?  I really don’t think I look that old (don’t we all?)…  Hmmph.

Readers, have you been mistaken for age to the point of it being offensive to you?  Do you have any tips for dealing with the situation?  Unfortunately, I don’t think I handled either situations with much grace.



Filed under Random

30 responses to “Please don’t make this mistake…

  1. It hasn’t happened with me, but my boyfriend has been out with his sister and a waiter thought he was her dad. Awkward…

  2. Cassie

    Ugh, that’s the worst. It happened to me when I was in my late teens actually. My sister played hockey, and I was supposed to go down to the change room and let her know where we’d meet her when she was finished changing. I told one of the other kids on the team and he went in the change room and said “Hey S, you mom says to meet them upstairs afterwards.” She’s little under two years younger than me :s It ended up balancing itself out about a month later when I was handed a 12 and under kiddie menu at a restaurant, lol. Are you more stressed or tired than usual right now? I find I look older when I’m stressed out and low on sleep.

    • The time with J., I was well rested, but I slept over at the BF’s and didn’t have my usual make-up (concealer, eye liner, etc).,but I was all dressed up for my sister’s grad (don’t remember if I was stressed or not).

  3. Oh! Lately I’ve had not one, but THREE terrible photos of me posted on the internet. Like, can a girl catch a break? I seriously look haggard in all of them. I feel your pain.

  4. Ugh!! :/ I’m not sure that I’d have responded über gracefully either! I agree that it’s best not to assume under any circumstance! I usually get mistaken for someone in my early 20’s rather than late 30’s… So I tend not to complain about that. 😉

  5. Oh yeah. Been there done that. I wish people would err on the side of caution – assume people are younger than they are, assume nobody is pregnant unless they are obviously sporting a full grown belly, etc.

  6. Amy

    I’ve got a baby-face, no doubt about that. I was in year 5 of university and someone asked what grade I was in :s I’ve also had people assume my sister, who is almost 10 years younger than me, was my older sister.

  7. mochiandmacarons

    I was mistaken for being out of high school.

    I think having a lot of acne had something to do with that.

    ….although these days, I am still being mistaken for at least being in college. They ask me what my major is. I also get NO respect until I prove myself because they think I’m too young to know anything. Kind of condescending actually.

  8. I’ve got a baby face so I’m usually assumed to be young. Therefore I try really hard to not make terrible judgements (or at least not voice them out loud). The one iffy thing that happened to me was when I was 24 and I had my 4 year old nephew with me. I had my hair in a ponytail and was shopping for baby clothes for his brother who was being born in the wrong state. (Long story but they were states away from home when he was born and therefore had nothing for him when he was born 2 weeks early). Someone commented that childern were having babies and I must have been 11 when I had that child and now look, I was having another at 16. I turned around and said “pardon me, I’m 24, do you want to see my licence? This is my nephew. You really should talk quieter.”

  9. omg awkward… I would be so upset.

    The only time I’ve been offended is sometimes when I go out for dinner with my dad people think I’m his WIFE. Like wtf?? My dad is nearly 60 and i’m 26. I know there’s gold-diggers with huge age gaps out there but COME ON why would that be your first assumption!

  10. My mouth dropped on the first story. That sucks! Both of them do. I have the same issue but with my sister. Everyone we meet thinks that I’m older which annoys the heck out of me even though we are only 1 year and 6 days apart. It’s still annoying so I can only imagine how I’d fume if they thought I were her sister!! My sister tries to pacify me with “it’s because you act more mature and grown up than I do” Whatever!

  11. O__O?

    You definitely don’t look old enough to have full-grown children!
    Maybe they just look young for their age?

  12. Anonymous

    Love how down-to-earth and honest you are about not-so-complimentary stories. Of course, everyone wants to share stories about how they were mistaken for someone much younger, but not many people would care to recall stories the other way around. Would it make you feel any better if I said I actually look old (from lack of sleep), while you probably just act more mature or those people have something wrong with their eyes? 🙂

  13. I think people are generally pretty sucky at guessing a person’s age, but being called ‘Mom’…yeah, that blows. I usually end up getting mistaken for being far younger than I am. My sister, who is 6 years younger than me, nearly blew a gasket this weekend when I was ID’ed and she wasn’t.

  14. belowhermeans

    Agreed, people should never make this assumption. Another one, pregnancy. My mom said to never ask a woman how far along she is unless you can see the baby coming out. LOL.

  15. People are TEH WORST. I was mistaken for a boy when I was a kid, and like three times for being pregnant over the past few years. People just need to simmer down and not assume anything unless it’s BLATANTLY OBVIOUS.

  16. Ummm, I would be mad. No one wants to look older than their age. Were you wearing particularly mature clothing? I find if I am wearing dress clothes people often think I am much older. If I am dressed up and with a friend rocking lululemon I would guaranteed look like her mom.

  17. If it makes you feel any better when I was about 23 and I was out with my parents at a restaurant for dinner, I order a belini and they gave me a mock-belini that included a lollipop on top because they thought I was too young and too dumb to know that a belini had alcohol. Truly embarrassing.

  18. Kay

    That sucks!! whats wrong with people..why do they assume??

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  20. I’m pretty much all over the map so I have long since been desensitized. I’ve been mistaken for:
    a) a preteen in my midtwenties;
    b) in my mid-30s in my midtwenties;
    c) a pre-adolescent as a late teen;
    d) a mother of two (I was babysitting) as a teen.

    And PiC’s made the mistake of thinking someone was a mom of her much younger sister (about 4-6 years younger) though I thought he was nuts, and that the “mom” was 10 years older than me even though she was younger. Sooo… I react very little to physical attributes and openly acknowledge: people are crap at judging exteriors. They should probably figure that out too! 🙂

    You know what I’ve always thought? Media has played an idiotic role in this inability to appropriately judge age as well: casting 25-30 yr olds in teenage roles. What’s that all about? Now people think teenagers should really look like that? No, 95% of the teenagers I knew did NOT look like that, thank you very much you crazy people.

    But for myself, I can’t tell what age, weight, race, etc. anyone is, period. So I don’t even try. We’re much better off when I don’t guess!

  21. Karie

    The vast majority of people think they look younger than they do but they usually don`t, most people look their age. They usually remember just one comment someone gave them about looking young! That being said, I would be furious and extremely upset if that happened to me too. I would then try to think what is it about me that looks old. Is it my clothes, my demeanor, the way I wear my hair, etc. and then try to make it more youthful but still flattering. I had a friend who curled her bangs under with a curling iron in a most unflattering way that people thought she was way younger than she was because who would wear their hair like that but an awkward teenager. Anyway, don`t worry too much about it but maybe ask someone you trust like your sister what they think makes you look older than you do.

  22. sara

    when my mom and i go go the mall i can see that all boys look at her she is a 39 year-old women and she looks as if she is a 14 or 16 teenager girl and that really bothers me i mean i want her to be pretty but not that pretty i see a lot of moms who are pretty and nice but at least they look older than their own daughters every time i hear someone mistaken us for thinking that we are sisters it just makes me feel the ugliest person on earth …….everyone tells me i am a cute girl but when they see my mom they start saying wowwwww ur mom is soo much prettier than u every single night i cry about this thing
    i really need help!(btw i am 14)

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