Pauline Monica Mole is Adrian Mole and Rosie Mole's mother, and a prominent character throughout the series. She is warm-hearted and devoted to her children, but extremely temperamental: she frequently changes her desires, interests and ambitions, seldom feeling content or fulfilled with her life. The love of her life, whom she has married three times, is George Mole .
Born on September 14th 1944 as Pauline Sugden, she grew up on a Norfolk potato farm. She was a somewhat rebellious teenager who enjoyed rock and roll, hippie culture and recreational drugs; she left the Broads area and took a series of jobs in the Midlands, including working at a pie factory and a mobile hairdressing salon. At around 21 years of age, Pauline had a relationship with a maggot farmer and poet named Ernie Crabtree; according to her, the reason they separated was his refusal to give up the maggots. Soon thereafter, she first married George Mole, also working class, and settled with him in Ashby de-la-Zouch. Their first child, Adrian Mole, was conceived before the wedding, and remained an only child until 1982, when second child Rosie Mole was born.
Their marriage appears to have been stable for the first 14 years. In 1981, Pauline becomes increasingly dispondant and restless, taking an assertiveness class and neglecting housekeeping and cooking. She soon begins an affair with the Moles' recently-divorced neighbour, Mr. "Bimbo" Lucas, leaving her husband and teenage son. She insists to Adrian that her maternal feeling for him had not changed, however, and invites him to join her and Lucas on a holiday in Scotland - one which he finds insufferable.
Pauline and Lucas separate near the end of that year. She patches things up with George and moves back home; early in 1982 she finds herself pregnant again. She is later upset to learn that George had also taken a lover (Doreen Slater) during her absence, and fathered her child, Brett. What she does not tell him was that she had a one-night reconciliation with Bimbo in Febraury 1982 - thus her baby, Rosie, may be his daughter rather than George's. When Bimbo claims the baby, George is understandably dismayed.
It falls to Adrian to help repair his parents' marriage. Rosie's paternity is never proven, and the Moles retain custody of her. Having a new child to raise keeps George and Pauline together for another 6 years.
In 1989 Pauline, again dissatisfied and feeling she has wasted her life, embarks on another adulterous relationship - this time with her lodger, Martin Muffett, who is 23 years younger than herself. To the dismay of George, Adrian and Martin's parents, the affair lasts and becomes very serious. George and Pauline actually divorce for the first time, George moving out of the family home. Pauline marries Martin on Christmas Eve 1989. Their wedding is marred by the discovery that Adrian, who was giving his mother away, has a severe infestation of headlice.
The unlikely but contented couple have a good honeymoon and remain happy with each other for their first year of marriage. Their vague plan is to move to Amazonia and work on civil infrastructure projects after Martin completes his engineering degree. However, Martin begins to accumulate uncomfortable debts, and by late 1991 he is regretting his rush into marriage. Pauline becomes frantic over bills, which threatens to swallow Martin's tuition money. Adrian feels obliged to settle some of them for her.
Inevitably, Martin finally leaves Pauline for a much younger woman: Bianca Dartington, Adrian's lover. Pauline is distraught and seeks comfort from George, who swallows his pride and takes her back. They remarry some time in 1992 or 1993.
At Christmas 1992 Adrian brings home his beautiful Nigerian fiancee, Jo-Jo, who Pauline takes an immediate liking to. She is very pleased by he son's marriage to such a clever, talented and good-looking woman, and is later a doting grandmother to their son William. When Jo-Jo eventually leaves Adrian because of his inconsiderate and inadequate behaviour (see Adrian Mole The Cappucinno Years), Pauline is very disappointed in him. (Given her own record in marriages, however, she soon forgets the matter).
Her mercurial, discontented nature wins out once more in 1997, when she falls in love with Ivan Braithwaite - destroying her marriage yet again, as well as his. In a fitting symmetry, George then gets together with Ivan's estranged wife Tania Braithwaite.Pauline and Ivan marry in late 2000. During their honeymoon, Pauline believes she has left her sunglasses on an offshore islet from which they have just returned. Ivan attempts to swim back to the islet and retrieve them: on the way, he suffers cramp, is immobilised by pain, and drowns. Pauline then discovers that the sunglasses were in her handbag all along. At Ivan's funeral, Pauline reconnects with George and soon seduces him away from Tania. they remarry in 2001-2002..
George and Pauline sell their house in Wisteria Walk, Ashby de-la-Zouch - where they have lived all of Adrian's life - at the end of 2002. Pauline's latest unconventional notion is to create their dream home by taking on a delapidated property as a renovation project. They purchase two old pigsties in a field near the village of Mangold Parva, and move there in a caravan during winter (a highly inappropriate time!) Pauline hires a labourer named Animal, an incredibly powerful man with a seemingly limited intellect and minimal vocabulary, to do the heavy demolition and building work. She establishes a good understanding and empathy with Animal, whom she refers to as "one of nature's gentlemen."
George does his best to assist with the labour, and over-exerts himself until he seriously injures his spine. He is rushed to hospital, where he contracts MRSA and becomes a long-stay patient. (This closely parallels his experience in the other timeline, although chronologically later). Pauline and Animal continue working together, becoming sexually involved, and complete the pigsty conversion during 2003. George is eventually discharged from hospital, but is now permanently disabled. He accepts living with Pauline and Animal in a consentual menage a trois
Pauline rents out the second pigsty to her debt-strapped son Adrian and his new wife, Daisy Flowers. By July 2004 they have provided her with a third grandchild.