9 Reasons You Love Your Mum But Can't Stand Her

Your relationship with your mother can be confusing. We explore why sometimes we both love and hate our mum.

9 Reasons You Love Your Mum but Can't Stand Her

Introduction: Navigating Difficult Mother-Daughter Relationships

The relationship between a mother and daughter is perhaps one of the most sensitive, layered connections a woman will experience in her lifetime. It's a mix of love, history, support, and sometimes, intense frustration and pain. In this article, we'll explore nine common reasons why you might find yourself in a love-hate dynamic with your mum. Through real-life stories of clients who've walked similar paths, we'll uncover the issues that many women face and provide a potential path to healing.

Reason 1: Unmet Expectations

Unmet expectations in a mother-daughter relationship can be a source of profound disappointment. This problem lies between what we imagined our relationship with our mothers would be like and the reality can lead to a deep sense of loss and longing.

Emma, a client in my Daughters of the Roses program, vividly recalls the weight of unmet expectations. She often pictured heart-to-heart conversations and a sense of emotional closeness. However, reality presented a different picture, due to her mum being emotionally unavailable. Through our sessions, Emma learned that while it's natural to long for that connection, it's equally important to validate her own needs. Together, we worked on strategies to foster a more fulfilling connection, which included open communication and setting realistic expectations with her mum.

Reason 2: Communication Challenges

Clear and effective communication is the cornerstone of any healthy relationship, yet it can be remarkably difficult in mother-daughter dynamics. The interplay of familiarity, generational differences, power differences and individual communication styles can sometimes lead to misunderstandings.

Sophie, another client, shared her struggles with communication in her relationship with her mum. There were moments when she felt her words were lost in translation, leading to frustration on both ends. Through our work together, Sophie gained insights into effective communication techniques including how to deal with gaslighting and denial. She discovered the power of active listening, expressing herself assertively, and creating a safe space for open dialogue. These newfound skills transformed her interactions with her mother, creating a bridge of understanding.

Reason 3: Generational Differences and Intergenerational Trauma

Each generation carries its own set of values, beliefs, and ways of navigating the world. Bridging these generational gaps can be a source of both growth and tension, especially when intergenerational wounds get passed on.

We have to hold in mind previous generations didn’t have the resources and understanding to help people with mental health, maternal health, baby loss and relationships in the way we do today. This unexpressed and unhealed pain can be passed on through the generations until someone is brave enough to heal it and feel it.

Melissa, a client in my program, experienced this tension firsthand. She recalled moments of clash, where different worldviews seemed irreconcilable, especially around mental health, her mum felt she was lazy and should ‘get on with it’ just like mum had done when face with marital difficulties as a young woman.

In the Daughters of the Roses program, Melissa found solace in the realisation that understanding doesn't always mean agreement. Through facilitated discussions and exercises, she learned to appreciate the unique perspectives that each generation brings. This newfound understanding became a bridge that connected her with her mum on a deeper level.

Reason 4: Unresolved Childhood Wounds

Our childhood experiences, particularly those involving our mothers, can leave deep imprints on our psyche. When these wounds go unaddressed, they can subtly influence our adult relationships whether romantic or otherwise. We may find ourselves people-pleasing, managing others feelings, being unable to say ‘No’ or repeating toxic patterns and behaviours.

In the Daughters of the Roses program, clients like Sarah have discovered a safe space to explore and heal these lingering wounds. Sarah vividly recalled how moments from her childhood echoed in her adult interactions with her mother filling her with resentment, anger and anxiety.

Through therapeutic techniques like EFT, Meditation, Somatic Release, and the principles of Polyvagal theory, Sarah learned to free herself from the weight of the past. This newfound emotional freedom not only allowed her to choose to let go of her relationship with her mother but also became a catalyst for her own personal growth.

Reason 5: Balancing Independence and Attachment

As we grow into independent adults, finding a balance between autonomy and attachment to our mothers can be a delicate dance and one she may struggle with too. Striking this balance is a key aspect of maintaining a healthy, fulfilling relationship. As a smothering mother or a distant mother can leave you feeling unable to be yourself, feeling not good enough, angry and lost.

In the program, clients like Kay have discovered how to embrace their independence while still cherishing the bond with their mums. Kay shared how empowering it was to establish boundaries that respected her autonomy without diminishing the love she felt for her mother. Through this process, she not only deepened her sense of self but also nurtured a more authentic connection with her mum, whilst giving her mum time and space to adjust.

Reason 6: Coping with Emotional Baggage

Emotional baggage, whether from childhood or more recent experiences, can cast a shadow over mother-daughter relationships. Learning healthy coping mechanisms and emotional regulation techniques can be transformative whether you choose to heal your relationship with your mum or walk away.

In the program, clients like Charlotte have developed invaluable tools to navigate and release this emotional weight. Charlotte recalled moments when unresolved emotions coloured her interactions with her mother, as her anger and resentment would be close to the surface and a cutting remark would be enough to let it out.

Through a combination of therapeutic techniques, including EFT, Meditation, Somatic Release, and insights from Polyvagal theory, Charlotte not only found healing but also a newfound sense of empowerment in her relationship with her mother, because she was able to tell her mum how she felt and what she needed.

Reason 7: Different Approaches to Conflict

Conflict is a natural part of any relationship, but differing approaches to conflict resolution can sometimes exacerbate tensions. Learning effective conflict resolution strategies can be a game-changer.

Lots of mums who are emotionally distant and hurt, have coping mechanisms that they use in arguments, that can be described as toxic. Gaslighting, denial, changing the subject, blaming, shaming and using the ‘poor me’ routine, to name a few.

In the Daughters of the Roses program, clients like Lisa have gained invaluable insights into navigating conflicts with their mothers by understanding these emotional manipulations and how to work with them.

Lisa recalled moments when disagreements seemed insurmountable. Through understanding her mother's unique approach to conflict, combined with assertive communication techniques and knowing how to deal with emotional manipulation, Lisa transformed potential battlegrounds into opportunities for growth and understanding for her and her mum.

Reason 8: Managing Expectations of Motherhood

The transition to motherhood can bring its own set of challenges, including comparing your own experiences with your mother's role. This reflective process can be hard, bringing up difficult memories, and unresolved conflicts between you and your mum.

As we become mothers ourselves, we can question what type of mum we want to be, and very often our mum becomes an example of what not to be or do. This can bring up a lot of resentment and pain which needs to be worked through.

In the program, clients like Mia have explored these complex emotions. Mia reflected on the expectations she had for herself as a mother and how they intersected with her own experiences growing up. Through thoughtful exercises and discussions, Mia gained a deeper understanding of the complexities of motherhood, allowing her to approach it with a newfound sense of compassion for both her and her mother.

Reason 9: Seeking Closure and Resolution

For many, seeking closure or resolution in their relationship with their mothers is a significant step towards healing. This can mean working through the problems with your mum, choosing to take a break from your mum or even walking away from the relationship altogether.

Closure often comes after understanding your mum, your Self and the situation, unlocking strategies to help you heal and recover from the pain and trauma, unlearning toxic patterns and behaviours, so you can become the woman you want to be, with confidence and emotional freedom.

In the program, clients like Emily have found a supportive environment to explore and address these desires. Emily shared how liberating it was to express her feelings and seek understanding from her mother and herself. Through facilitated dialogues and therapeutic techniques, Emily discovered a newfound sense of peace and acceptance, paving the way for a more peaceful and fulfilling connection with her mum.

Healing Through Shared Experiences

The journey of healing is often more potent when shared. In the Daughters of the Roses program, clients like Emma, Sophie, Melissa, Sarah, Kay, Charlotte, Lisa, Mia, and many others have found a supportive community. This safe space to share experiences, challenges, and triumphs has been a cornerstone of their healing journeys.

Through group sessions, they've not only received guidance from me but also gained valuable insights and support from fellow daughters on similar paths. This sense of sisterhood has not only nurtured their individual growth but also enriched their relationships with their mothers.

The Daughters of the Roses program offers a holistic approach to healing mother-daughter relationships, encompassing therapeutic techniques like EFT, Meditation, Somatic Release, and the principles of Polyvagal theory. Through a blend of personalised pathways, group interactions, and transformative exercises, women embark on a journey of self-discovery and healing.

If you're ready to embrace a deeper, more authentic connection with your Self, I invite you to join us. Together, we'll navigate the intricacies of this foundational relationship and unearth the healing that's been waiting to bloom.

Award Winning Psychotherapist and Mother Wound Whisperer, Charlotte Pardy MA

Categories: : case studies, hate, love, mom, Mothers, mum, Relationship