Note: Mumsnetters don't necessarily have the qualifications or experience to offer relationships counselling or to provide help in cases of domestic violence. Mumsnet can't be held responsible for any advice given on the site. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

My mum is lovely but . . .

(19 Posts)
Doinmummy Mon 10-Dec-12 22:14:05

I have just read on another thread that the poster is having counselling with regard to relationships and it hit me like a wet fish round the chops that my Mum has also ( unintentionally ) not been very supportive of me emotionally. She has been amazing with practical help but she has ignored my emotions. EG when I found out my DH was having an affair and I wanted to ruin his LP collection, all my Mum said was ' Now don't be silly' . I have had a really rough time with DD and she changes the subject if I try and talk to her about it. We were talking this weekend about how she wasn't sure about having children, my Dad was the one who wanted a family. My Mum said " Yes, I wasn't sure but it's too late now" . She has never acknowledged that I may have a reason to be upset even if I'm sobbing down the phone.

It's made me feel sad but quite enlightened , if that makes sense.

jingleallthespringy Mon 10-Dec-12 22:22:14

My mum is like this. Great practical help - she used to do my cleaning when I was a single parent <love my mum> - but she is not interested to go too deep with anything emotional. My sisters complain about this a lot, assuming she supports me emotionally and not them. But she's the same with me.

Doinmummy Mon 10-Dec-12 22:34:00

Yes, my Mum will help with practical/ financial problems but has never been interested in just sitting down and talking things through with me. Her response to my emotions is " oh well , never mind" . She also said , when I was telling her about DDs behaviour " I bet you regret having her now" . She lives me, I know that , and I know she worries about me, but it's just dawned on me that she's never ' been there' for me emotionally. I am now wondering how this has affected me and my own behaviour . I am a people pleaser , which I hate. Is this why ?

DearJ0hn Mon 10-Dec-12 23:38:05

I'd maybe try not to dwell on this too much. That way madness lies.

My mother is not 'emotional' and that's fine. She is also bloody brilliant. Concentrate on the good and appreciate what you have

Doinmummy Mon 10-Dec-12 23:41:38

Good point John my Mum has been great . I know she loves me , just doesn't ' do' emotions. I am lucky to have her . It just struck a cord when I read the other thread.

DearJ0hn Mon 10-Dec-12 23:45:34

My mum always says to me ' oh pull yourself together' ... she'd say it even if i was half dead, Im sure. It just makes me laugh.

She has had cancer and another scare recently. I suppose this puts it into perspective for me. She is here, i still have a mum and for me, this is the main thing. If she is not abusing you or being mean to you... it's not something to over think.

Im also not an emotional mother myself.. my eldest accepts this and loves me just the same. All mothers are different i suppose!

MissCellania Mon 10-Dec-12 23:51:55

It's just the way she is, you can't expect someone to be just what you need them to be. She supports you in her own way.

I think daughters can have very high expectations of their mothers, that just aren't fair.

Doinmummy Tue 11-Dec-12 01:21:18

She is a great Mum , it's just thatI read another thread and realised the lack of emotional stuff. Still, I guess it's stopped me from being ' Lilly livered' grin

jingleallthespringy Tue 11-Dec-12 10:06:11

It's a good thing to know though, to bear in mind. My mum lives in a fantasy world in a lot of ways. She absolutely won't face any difficulties. a denial world I should say. She's a longterm victim of a very controlling husband so she's filed a lot away to survive. <bloody sad>

HotDAMNlifeisgood Tue 11-Dec-12 10:15:25

it's just dawned on me that she's never ' been there' for me emotionally. I am now wondering how this has affected me and my own behaviour . I am a people pleaser , which I hate. Is this why ?

Could be. Children whose feelings are invalidated by their parents growing will quite frequently grow up thinking there is something "wrong" or unlovable about them, and spend the rest of their lives proving it (through self-sabotage) or desperately trying to get outside confirmation that they are not bad and unlovable (people-pleasing), and often a mixture of the two.

Is this what your gut is telling you?

HotDAMNlifeisgood Tue 11-Dec-12 10:15:52

*growing up

snickers251 Tue 11-Dec-12 10:17:52

Another one here! Dm will help in all aspects but emotional help consists of a lot of eye rolling and huffing making me feel like I am to blame.

My sil is the same with my mil!

Doinmummy Tue 11-Dec-12 15:16:01

Hot I have never given this much thought before. The other posters words struck a cord. I have had trouble with relationships ( controlling men, trying to please everyone) and wonder if my Mums lack of emotional support had in some way exacerbated my level if accepting situations that have not been healthy for me.

Doinmummy Tue 11-Dec-12 15:16:31

Of not if

sweetfluffybunnies England Tue 11-Dec-12 15:30:03

I was just thinking that, for many of our mothers, their mothers lived through at least one world war, if not two, and also lived in a time when women's rights, and thus expectations, were very different from today.

I guess they had to develop a great deal of emotional resilience and toughness. I suspect that this was passed on to their daughters, our mothers, who would therefore never have had much emotional support themselves, and never learnt how to be emotionally supportive in the way we would like. That doesn't mean that they don't care about us, just that they show it in the way they are most comfortable with - not necessarily talking.

Sorry to ramble on, it just made me think!

DogEgg Tue 11-Dec-12 16:38:12

My Mum died 2 weeks ago. I think she loved me in her own way.

She didn't want children but lived in an age where women had children not choices. She was raised by a Victorian and lived her own life by Victorian standards. Emotions were a sign of weakness, sex was wrong, warmth was a weakness and God was right about everything. Fortitude and strength of character were more important than seeing the value in oneself or enjoying one's relationships. She signed cards "from Mum." She never changed.

In the past I never felt special or wanted or valued. I made some really stupid mistakes seeking that feeling of being special in order to escape feeling ugly, wrong and unimportant.

I'm 50 now and my joy is that I'm not like her. I have warm caring relationships with my DH, family and friends. I constantly tell them I love them and they tell me they love me. I'm interested in them, value them for what they are and follow their lives with interest. I revel in their successes, support their choices and help them when they're down. My poor Mum missed out on all that.

sweetfluffybunnies England Wed 12-Dec-12 09:15:08

Lovely post, dogegg

TwoJackRussellsandababy Wed 12-Dec-12 09:21:01

I agree with the earlier poster, I think in part it's the situation some of our mothers were brought up in which make them emotionally stunted.

Certainly my grandmother was an orphan who didn't know how to be loving to an extent and that's been passed on to my mother, I hope I can be better at expressing my emotions than either of them

sue52 Wed 12-Dec-12 10:38:24

Your Mum loves you and gives you practical help. That sounds like a good Mum to me. She sounds like she does her best. You can't change her personality.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now