SINGAPORE: A man shared on social media that he no longer looked forward to CNY gatherings as it “has turned into a lowkey flexing and showing off session” for his relatives.

“Like they will compare and say, A just upgraded to a new condo, B got a high paying job which pays $x, C got all distinctions in his exams last year etc. Others would show off their latest gadgets or cars,” the man wrote on r/askSingapore on Monday (Jan 29).

After witnessing their behaviors, the man said that the celebration had lost its original meaning, where everybody could gather and have a joyous time.

“Do u feel the same way?” he asked others.

‘They are always comparing and exaggerating’

The post seemed to have struck a chord with the Singaporean Redditors, as many shared their experiences in the comments section, stating that they too dreaded the upcoming celebration.

One commented: “they are always comparing and exaggerating. Even compare the cousin height or their own height to me, who is visibly much shorter. Try find ways to work around it by maybe going fishing or whichever thing you can think of.”

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While another said: “I used to enjoy CNY festivities as a child/teen because it means free food, free red packets, free entertainment.

But as an adult, tiring to spend 1-3 days going around visiting, making useless small talk with relatives and distant relatives I don’t care about, listening to the usual people talk loudly about politics, and the free food just isn’t worth it anymore since I can buy good food myself.”

For the few lucky individuals who had good relatives and still enjoyed the CNY celebration, they disagreed with the sentiments of the post author and stated that they looked forward to it.

One shared: “Looking forward to steamboat feast and goodies. My relatives are relatively chill (haha) no humble bragging or comparing, we eat and talk like normal people?”

While another stated: “I actually really like CNY! CNY snacks and meals are unparalleled. I get to 拜年 to my grandparents. Lohei is so fun and the older I get the more I like to eat the vegetables lol.

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I enjoy catching up with relatives and friends, but make it a point to only visit people that I like and want to see. It’s an excuse to buy new clothes! And it’s a 2 day public holiday too.

Only downside is I now have to give angpaos instead of collecting but it’s to a small group of people who I want to give to anyway. Always look forward to it.”

During Chinese New Year, family get-togethers have become an annual ritual for Singaporeans.

However, some have begun to become anxious about this celebration because not only will there be awkward encounters with relatives that they haven’t seen in a long time, but they also have to deal with nosy relatives who ask extremely personal questions, both of which can negatively impact a person’s mental or emotional health. 

Earlier this month, a man even took to social media to ask others how to avoid “judgmental and critical” family members at CNY family gatherings.

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Read related: Man asks how to avoid “judgmental & critical” CNY family gatherings