Thursday 23 November 2017

31 is the age women turn into their mothers

According to a recent survey, we develop the same interests and hobbies as our mums at this age.

Mum and mum-to-be: Carole Middleton and Kate already have similar dress sense and mannerisms
Mum and mum-to-be: Carole Middleton and Kate already have similar dress sense and mannerisms
Dee Woods and her mum, Sheelagh, whose relationship has evolved into friendship
Sheelagh in her thirties.
Holistic approach: Emily and Paula have similar views on bringing up children

Geraldine Lynagh

Geraldine Lynagh quizzes three real Irish women to find out how they grew up, and their relationship with their mothers.

When Kate Middleton  gives birth, it's  thought she'll move in with her mum Carole for the first few months. Kate might find her new arrival will change her life in more ways than one. A new study has found that most  women say they turned into their mothers at 31 — the age Kate is  now — and the key turning point  was the birth of their child.

Claire Brock's mum Sarah is helping her with her wedding plans.
Claire Brock's mum Sarah is helping her with her wedding plans.

It also found many women  develop the same interests and  hobbies as their mothers, pick up  similar mannerisms and even  share the same taste in men. It may  not be a bad thing — most name  their mums as the most  inspirational woman in their lives. 

So how true are the findings? We  asked three women if they're  starting to resemble their mums

Sarah Brock in her thirties
Sarah Brock in her thirties

"I'm incredibly proud of mum."

Claire Brock (33) is a news anchor and reporter with TV3 News. Her mum Sarah lives in Glenageary, Co Dublin.

"My mum and I have very different personalities, but I do see similar traits emerging as I get older," says Claire. "I remember when I was young, my mum would talk on the phone to her sister for what seemed like hours. It's probably me and my mum having those long conversations now!

"We talk every day. When you're that close, it's only natural that your personalities rub off on each other." Claire is getting married in September, and sharing her mum's tastes has made the planning easier.

"She came along when I was shopping for my dress and was brilliant. She knows my style so well. She's been a big help. Mum's background is as an interior designer. I think partly because of that I've developed a real need to make a nice home.

"If I have kids, I'm sure I'd really see some of mum's personality traits coming through in me. She's really patient and I definitely have a much shorter fuse, though I'd like to think I'm getting better. Mum is also a great listener. I'd like to think I'd be like that too if I have kids.

"She's the strongest person I know. A few years ago my aunt needed a new kidney. Mum was a perfect match, so she donated one of hers. The operation takes months to recover from. When I saw how much it changed both of their lives, she made me incredibly proud of her."

"She's got a mad side. I probably got that too!"

Emily McElarney (32) is a mother of two who teaches hypnobirthing as well as yoga classes for children. Mum Paula Lambert lives in Dun Laoghaire.

"Despite my best efforts, I'm definitely turning into my mum," Emily admits jokingly. "We have the same mannerisms. Sometimes I catch myself doing or saying something exactly as she would do it." Emily's mum Paula is a children's entertainer best-known as being the puppeteer behind Bosco. Emily shares her love of children. "Mum has always had a very holistic approach to kids," she says. "I definitely got that side of her. She's also got a mad side. I probably got that too!" she laughs.

"Mum was self-employed," Emily continues. "I've just started my own business so we definitely share that work ethic."

Since Emily had her own kids, her relationship with her mum has changed. "Now that I have kids myself, we talk every day," she says. She sees echoes of her mum in the way she's bringing up her two boys. "We both believe in kids having fun and being allowed to be themselves and mess about."

"Hopefully I'll have kids some day, and I would love to think I'd be half as good a mum as she is."

Dee Woods (31) presents Nova Nights on Radio Nova. Mum Sheelagh lives in Portmarnock, Co Dublin.

"I started turning into my mum years ago," laughs Dee. "I sneezed recently and thought 'Oh my God, that's my mum's sneeze.' I notice we even pose the same way in photos," she continues. "Some people say we look alike. I can't really see it now, but in some photos of her when she was younger, I think I'm the image of her."

Dee and her mum share many of the same interests. "We're both grammar nerds! I grew up watching her do the crossword in the newspaper and now I do it. "It's not a bad thing," says Dee. "I definitely look up to my mum and we get on so well. She was always a great mum. She was strict with us when she needed to be, but was also very easygoing and cool."

Dee and Sheelagh's relationship has evolved through the years. "I work nights in Nova so I'm off during the day. She's retired so we meet for coffee and go for walks together," says Dee. "It's more of a friendship now."

She continues: "I'm not sure about us being attracted to the same men. That's frightening in a way, because it means I've married my dad. But I suppose my husband Marty is quite similar to my dad in some ways. He's very dependable and kind."

"Mum is definitely the most inspirational woman in my life," she says. "Hopefully I'll have kids some day and I would love to think I'd be half as good a mum as she was."

Dee wonders if the mother/ daughter roles are reversing as they get older. "Sometimes I find myself saying 'God, kids today', or 'how do you work this thing?'" she admits. "Mum embraces every new technology. In many ways it's like I'm a granny, whereas she actually is a granny," she laughs. "Mum is very cool. I hope I'll be like her when I'm her age."

Giving birth inspires us to be more like our mums quizzed 1,000 women on how behaviour is passed through generations.

* 51pc said their mum was the most inspirational woman in their lives.

* 36pc said giving birth inspired them to be more like their mothers.

* 27pc noticed the similarities at the age of 31.

* 24pc enjoyed the same TV shows.

* 16pc shared their mum's hobbies.

* 15pc used the same turns of phrase.

* 9pc were attracted to the same type of men as their mothers.

Irish Independent

Promoted Links

Life Newsletter

Our digest of the week's juiciest lifestyle titbits.

Promoted Links

Editors Choice

Also in Life