Article | Fabulous Women

My Relationship with My Mother and How it Defined Me

Posted on 20/07/2012

I spent many years keeping my mother at arms length, in fact she represented everything I detested about being a women. My relationship with my mother affected my relationships with myself and therefore others - partners, friends, family, colleagues. In 2002 during my NLP training I realised I had to let go of the negative baggage that I had stored. I cannot believe how changing my perception and clearing the negative emotions and the limiting beliefs around my mother has allowed me to develop in ways I could not have even imagined I would. I now have a thriving business, great friends and a phenominal husband - everything I ever wanted.

How did this happen?

Psychologically and physiologically our formative years (from birth through to age seven), depicts how we relate to others and ourselves. In these formative years our relationship with our parents, biological or adoptive, creates a blueprint for future relationships. This blueprint controls how we enter into and operate our intimate relationships and our friendships. It holds the key to the success of future relationships. In general, mum is the care-giver and around more often than dad.

If youre having relationship issues, the answer might lie closer to home than you think

Research has shown that the formation of our mammalian brain (the place where we experience emotion) is affected by how much or how little nurturing and caring we receive from the time we are born up to about the age of seven. Our mothers nurturing, feeding, caring and behaviour teaches us how to experience emotion and how to relate to ourselves and others. If we dont get enough nurturing, care and acknowledgement or if mum was over-protective, too busy or inattentive our inner-child may have a slightly distorted approach to the relationship with itself and others. When we are this young, we cannot fend for ourselves so our mothers are intrinsic to our survival; this mother-child bond is key to developing healthy future relationships.

It is also important to know that even if this was our experience, even if we believe mum wasnt quite there for us like we wanted her to be, we can change how we perceive this as an adult. We can stop the inner child from running our responses and behaviours and move towards rewarding relationships.

So what sort of relationship<<>doyou have with your mum?

Are there things that you hold her responsible for?
Do you think she should have / could have done better?
Are you disappointed that she wasnt there for you when you needed her?
Do you find her over possessive, demanding and controlling?

If you said yes to any of these then why not make this mothers day the time when you set things straight by simply offering your mother forgiveness and respect.


None of us are given a parenting manual (wouldnt it be great if we did?) so mistakes are bound to be made along the way; but understand that your mother did her best with the resources she had at the time. And forgive her. Simply release any anger and distress you may have and offer her your forgiveness. You dont have to like what she did, didnt do or does; you just have to let it go. Allow yourself the gift of forgiveness and you will find that the person who benefits the most is you.

Respecting Her as a Person

You may love her and its ok not to like her
Respect who she is as a person and give her the space to be who she is
Recognise that she is also human and although she had a role to play, you can free yourself from the belief that she should have known better - She simply didnt
Be satisfied with the fact that, whilst your upbringing can define you, you can also choose to define yourself with the knowledge that youve gained from your own experiences

Its taken me over 30 years to learn to like my mum - I love her dearly, I never liked who she was and how she behaved. Now, after having resolved my issues, I am finally able to treat her as a friend, to love her, to like her and to respect her. I can now accept her and appreciate her for the human being that she is.

So why dont you give your mum the gift of forgiveness and respect and if you need a little bit of extra help to get you started, then you can always drop me a line. Wishing you love and light on your journey.

Back Author : Elvira Villarini

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