History repeats itself, right? Let’s hope not, because your last mother-daughter shopping trip was a fiasco. Bickering, tears and temper tantrums ensued, and it’s a good thing the mall security guards didn’t see you because they would’ve separated you like two kids squabbling in the schoolyard. Of course, you weren’t arguing over lunch money or a cute boy, but whether or not you should go to H&M or J. Crew. So, how do you go about having a successful mother-daughter shopping trip when things seem to go sour the first second you step foot in the mall? How do you put the bonding back into the experience?
A Little Pre-planning Can Save the Day
Arguments over logistical issues can sink your shopping trip, especially if those arguments are taking place in the middle of a crowded mall. Decide beforehand what stores you want to visit, and allow plenty of time for things you both want to do. If you know what you want to buy and are bargain hunting, apps like Goodzer and Pricegrabber will help you compare prices and find the best deal.
Leave the Smartphones at Home
If you’ve already used a shopping app to find where the best deals, you don’t need to bring your phone in the mall. A mother-daughter shopping trip is supposed to be a bonding experience, so bond! Bonding includes talking, laughing and having fun — not walking through stores texting friends. Neither of you want to be the one who blindly crashes into a mannequin display because she’s too busy “liking” something on Facebook, right? Don’t live through others via social media. Be present and enjoy the precious time you’re spending together.
Leave the Snarky Comments at Home, Too
It’s not uncommon for family members to gently tease and taunt each other. It’s in our DNA. However, there’s a time and place for a gentle poke or prod, and in front of a dressing room mirror is not the place. If something doesn’t look good on someone be honest, but don’t go into gruesome detail. If you’re shopping for women’s shoes, tell your shopping partner if the pumps look good or bad. However, don’t say something like, “those shoes make your toes look like breakfast sausages.” Those are fighting words! Instead, say, “those Mad Love flats look marvelous, mom.”
Schedule Downtime Throughout the Day
After a few hours of shopping, foot fatigue is bound to set in. After a few more hours, the brightly lit mall and beeping cash registers are starting to give you a headache. You don’t want to literally shop ’til you drop, so this is when you break for an ice cream or coffee. Maybe you even take a longer shopping hiatus and venture into a matinee. A mid-afternoon break will keep irritability and conflict at bay.
Steer Clear of Inappropriate Stores
Leave the unmentionables unmentioned, so to speak. This may seem like a throwaway tip, but it’s not. Do you know how many mother-daughter arguments have been started over what clothing is or isn’t age appropriate? Too many to count — that’s how many.