Are you just complaining about mom?
Most adult daughters of difficult mothers I see in psychotherapy are not just complaining about mom. If anything they want to feel love from their mothers. When Mom is limited or impaired and can’t provide the love and support her daughter needs, she bears a burden few can understand.
Here is what I have witnessed in my psychotherapy practice ( in the video above).
If you’d rather read- transcript-
You know, after a day of seeing daughters of difficult mothers, I would like to scrap… if I could… once and for all the myth that daughter’s just like to complain about their moms.
It’s not one thing it’s your mom, right? Accompanied by an eye roll.
My experience, time after time is that daughters who have difficult narcissistic, histrionic, borderline insecure, addicted moms…, feel an incredible deep shame.
The shame is misplaced, but it’s real because of their mom’s odd behavior, unloving behavior, or criticism of them.
They bring up it up in psychotherapy and it stings. It’s not something they’re like, I can’t wait to put on Facebook or tell the world.
New Speaker: 01:05 No, they feel a deep shame about….. this is their mom, you know, how could mom who loves me or should love me treat me so badly and the conclusion that they come two more times than not is I was unlovable, I didn’t deserve it.
Speaker 1: 01:33 And that becomes the problem because when they don’t value themselves,
New Speaker: 01:52 And when I look into the face of my adult clients, I see the child in them and you know, their eyes lower and they like in a flash, remember something just unbelievable that their mom said or did, and they usually notice it doesn’t happen with their friends.
New Speaker: 02:17 Um, but it’s deeply shameful to them. I have not seen in my practice of 30 years… women who say my mother is a narcissist. She she does this, this, this, and this.
New Speaker: 02:35 Maybe that’s happened, but not, none of that is coming to mind right now. So I’d like to bust this myth that, you know, adult daughters just enjoy complaining about their mothers, not when their mothers have serious difficulty and have related to them in ways that sting and hurt.
Follow up thoughts
It isn’t that daughters NEVER blame their mothers. The road from dependence to independence can be difficult for both mother and daughter. I should know I’ve been there, both as a daughter and as a mother to two girls. Raising two daughters and letting them go was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done. But holding them hostage and refusing to let go is one of the most destructive thing a mother can do. It’s a daughter’s job to leave and a mother’s job to let her go.
But daughters do get stuck and instead of leaving and moving on some keep going back to a dry well hoping for water.
After finding out what is at the heart of the dynamic that makes their relationship difficult, they do need to move past it. But most daughters can’t move past something they don’t understand.
There is and was a power differential. Both in childhood and adulthood a mother will always hold some power over her daughter. That’s why it is up to Mom to do everything she can to support her daughter’s development and eventually claiming her own life.
Some mothers are Narcissistic or have Narcissistic tendencies that interfere with letting a daughter go.
If you are wondering if your mom is Narcissistic Here’s a way to tell.
Some daughters put their mother’s needs before their own and try and be good for Mom. If you wonder if you fall into this trap of the Good Daughter Syndrome take this quiz, it’s free.
Are you blaming Mom for everything or is Mom difficult? Let me know in the comments.
Most adult daughters of difficult mothers I see in psychotherapy are not just complaining about mom. If anything they want to feel love from their mothers. Click To Tweet