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"I used to be more unreasonable about what I expected, and I put my previous boyfriends under a lot of pressure to do better financially.
"In my village in Anhui, all the girls marry at 20.
But if she did lose her mind, well, we would step in and make sure she snapped out of it." Mrs Yu's daughter, however, was nowhere to be seen yesterday.
"Actually we have come here behind her back," she admitted.
For China's bachelors, the obligation to buy their brides a marital home weighs heavily.
Property prices in central Shanghai have reached £500,000 for an average two-bedroom apartment, but the average salary is just £4,600 a year.