When mothers ask too much of daughters.
I’ve been working with a client to help her use her voice with her mother to set boundaries and create a healthier dynamic between them.
When she approached her mother to share her feelings about a difficult situation, her mother said, “what about how I feel?”
There is so much power in those five little words.
It sucks away the validity behind her daughter’s feelings and quiets her immediately.
Being left unheard and unsupported by her mother, causes her to once again pull away.
This mother is unable to make room for her daughter’s feelings because she has her own unheard feelings, but that is not her daughter’s fault.
When we don’t hear each other as mother and daughter, we are left with two women who don’t feel listened to.
Now this daughter is caught in a cycle of protecting her mother from her own difficult feelings.
But its at the cost of what is true to her, which as we know, will not serve her in future relationships.
It’s too much.
When our mothers reactions bid us to take care of them, it’s too much.
When women aren’t listened to or heard, they bring these dynamics to their mother-daughter relationship and fight over who gets to be heard.
I see this over and over in my healing work with mothers and daughters.
Well intentioned mothers can struggle to support their daughters if they are not emotionally supported themselves.
When we remember that the flow of care goes from mother to daughter, then we can end the cycle of asking our daughters to take care of our feelings.
If you need something, speak it. Say it loud and proud.
Express how you feel and ask for what you need.
Allow your daughter to ask for what she needs and accomodate her if you can.
But don’t beg to be heard and taken care of by your daughter because you’re pushing your daughter away every time.
Instead, lean on your partner, your mother, friends or network of support.
When women are emotionally supported, they stop feeling neglected and the mother-daughter relationship thrives!