14 Spanish Sayings That Every Mexican Mom Says to Her Kids
Mexican moms and grandmas are famous for being wise and teaching through tough love. Although many of their Mexican sayings seem like threats or orders, they always come with a pinch of comedy. After all, life lessons are best learned with a sense of humor.
Mexican moms not only take care of the little ones, but also feel compelled to teach life lessons through their every word. The phrase “moms are always right” must have been created in Mexico because their instincts and wisdom know no limits.
This article celebrates Mexican culture through one of its most faithful reflections: oral tradition. All of these Mexican sayings have passed from generation to generation.
¡Aprendamos dichos mexicanos famosos!
Let’s learn famous Mexican sayings!
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14 Essential Mexican Mom Sayings
Get to know the humor and tough love of Mexican moms through these 13 Spanish sayings!
1. Mientras vivas en esta casa, se hace lo que yo digo.
Literal translation: As long as you live in this house, you do what I say.
What they mean: You’ll obey my orders because you live in my house and I pay for everything.
You have room to negotiate not doing something—until Mexican moms pull out this dicho (saying). You’re washing the dishes, and that’s it. This is one of those Mexican sayings about the family that passes from one generation to the next.
2. Cuéntale a tu papá lo que hiciste.
Literal translation: Tell your father what you did.
What they mean: I don’t have the time to scold you, but your dad can do it for me.
Sometimes when Mexican kids break a rule (or a window), Mom doesn’t scold them. Instead, she saves it all day long and makes the child tell their father what they did so that Dad can dole out the punishment.
3. Síguete haciendo el chistosito.
Literal translation: Keep on being the funny one.
What they mean: Keep being funny and I’ll put you in your place.
Tone: Threatening yet funny
This is one of those funny Mexican sayings that are perfect for public gatherings. If you continue to do what your Mexican mom has specifically asked you not to, the next line you will hear is: vas a ver cuando lleguemos (“you’ll see what happens when we get home”).
4. Porque soy tu mamá y punto.
Literal translation: Because I am your mom, period.
What they mean: You’ll do as I say.
This is one of the best mom quotes in Spanish. It teaches hierarchy, Mexican mom logic, and ends an argument in just a few words. Sayings like this are irrefutable; she is your mom, after all.
5. Sana sana colita de rana, si no sana hoy, sanará mañana.
Literal translation: Heal, heal, frog tail, if it doesn’t heal today, it will heal tomorrow.
What they mean: This bruise will heal soon with my love and care.
An incantation like this, coming from the person who loves you the most, works magically. No need to wait till tomorrow, everything stops hurting as soon as she says those words. Mexican moms say them as they delicately bandage a cut.
6. ¿Ya arreglaste tu cuarto?
Literal translation: Have you picked up your room yet?
What they mean: How can you think about playing outside with your room looking like that?
Like most mothers worldwide, Mexican moms make you clean up your room before going out to play.
7. Todo te entra por una oreja y te sale por otra.
Literal translation: Everything goes in one of your ears and out through the other one.
What they mean: You never listen.
Mexican moms sometimes guilt you into improved behavior with a resigned tone. You may hate it as a kid, but you’ll probably use it as a parent.
See also: 25 Funny Mexican Spanish Quotes
8. Te voy a dar una razón para que llores en serio.
Literal translation: I’ll give you a good reason to cry.
What they mean: You are crying over nothing. Stop it.
Mexican moms use this common threat to teach you the valuable lesson of having perspective. If you must cry, do it over something worthy. This is a candid Mexican saying about life.
9. Llévate suéter.
Literal translation: Take a sweater with you.
What they mean: Take care of yourself, I don’t want to deal with you getting the flu.
This is one of the most typical Mexican sayings. You will try to get out of this one every time because “it’s not that cold.” Nevertheless, this phrase reminds you that Mexican moms are always right.
10. ¡Ese es mi hijo/a!
Literal translation: That’s my son/daughter!
What they mean: I want everyone to know that the one dancing is my kid.
Mexican moms are proud of their children, especially after they sing like an angel or dance like a pro (according to her). As a little kid it feels really good to listen to your mom’s high-pitched voice shouting those words from in the crowd, but you’ll hate them as a teenager, guaranteed.
11. ¿Tú crees que esto es un hotel o qué?
Literal translation: You think this is a hotel or what?
What they mean: You can’t come and go as you please.
Most mom quotes in Spanish are like this one: funny, angry, and with a pinch of “I’m right and you’re wrong.” A variant of this saying is
Aquí no es restaurantes.
This is not a restaurant.
Moms use it whenever you ask for something fancy for breakfast or if you don’t finish your meal.
12. Esto me va a doler más a mí que a ti.
Literal translation: This is going to hurt me more than you.
What they mean: This is going to hurt you more than me, but I feel bad about it.
Tone: Guilty and dramatic
This is the worst of all Mexican sayings that a mom can say to you. If she feels bad about it, it must be really bad. A decision has been made, and there’s nothing you can do to change it.
13. Los voy a amarrar si siguen peleando.
Literal translation: I will tie you together if you keep fighting.
What they mean: I will punish you if you keep fighting.
Tone: Threatening yet funny
Whenever two siblings or friends are fighting como perros y gatos (like dogs and cats), Mexican moms say this phrase. As in, “if your sole purpose in life is to fight, let me tie you together so you can fight some more.”
14. Algún día me lo agradecerás
Literal translation: You’ll thank me someday.
What they mean: This is going to be good for your future.
Unlike the rest of the Mexican mom sayings on this list, this one isn’t a scolding, a threat, or a lesson. It’s a prophecy! You’ll hear this after a teaching intended to make your life better. For example, after she wakes you up early in the morning—by lovingly turning on all the lights and throwing your covers on the floor.
Learn Spanish by Learning Mexican Sayings
There are many ways to motivate yourself to learn Spanish. Getting to know some of the local sayings and slangs of Hispanic countries is one of them! Learning this language opens up doors for you like getting to know more people and accessing new job opportunities.
Taking classes with Homeschool Spanish Academy enhances your experience by speeding up your process. Our method is based on practicing with certified, native-speaking teachers to improve your conversation skills. Become part of our community of more than 24,000 monthly enrolled students and trust our decade of expertise. Take tailored lessons with HSA’s friendly teachers from Guatemala, and algún día me lo agradecerás.
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