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Friends and Family Everyone has disagreements, even best friends and family. If you need advice about a relationship, ask us here.

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golauren Offline
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Mother/daughter issues - August 17th 2014, 03:38 AM

I'm just wondering what the negative effects are on a daughter if she doesn't have a good motherly figure in her life, like she has a mother but they do not have a good relationship, like they don't have a good emotional bond. Is it normal for her to want that maternal relationship with another woman (ex: a friends mom, teacher, counselor, or any other female adult) if so is it normal for her to not be able to actually have the relationship with this other adult she is "attached" to because she's afraid the woman will reject her like her mother did?Is it normal for her to have trouble with relationships in general as well? What other emotional problems, if any, could be caused by a daughter not having a healthy relationship with her mother?


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Re: Mother/daughter issues - August 17th 2014, 08:30 AM

Hello Lauren
I'm speaking purely from my experience and with no other influence and I have a terrible relationship with my mother.
I won't go into details about the relationship but, personally, I do seek a "maternal relationship".
It's not a conscious thing but I do feel attached to some adult females in that way, mostly my boyfriend's mother.
I don't believe that my relationship with my mother negatively affect my boyfriend and I at all but I do seek guidance and the likes from his mother (which is annoying because she doesn't approve of me and so I can't actually talk to her about anything, despite how much I want to.)
I don't feel any fear of rejection as a result of this, but that could just be that I don't care at all? And my relationships with friends and whatnot seem unaffected, also
I hope I offered at least some helpful information to you.


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Celyn Offline
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Re: Mother/daughter issues - August 19th 2014, 03:11 PM

Hi there,

Like Sofia, I can only talk about my personal experience. However, I'm sure if you did a search on the internet, you could find more generic stuff. For academic type reading, you could look up the work of Bowlby and Ainsworth on attachment and also the Harlow monkey study.

From my experience, I have a mother, but we aren't "close". We get on in terms of there is no conflict, but there is also no or little "emotional glue" between us. I do love her, but there is something missing, you know? However, to the outside world, we appear to be a "normal" family.

Is it normal to want a maternal relationship with another woman? For me, I think so. I started unconsciously seeking mother figures from when I was about 7 or 8? Later on, this turned to an obsession with a teacher at school, because she was everything my mum was not. She gave me hugs, comfort, understanding and she listened to me. My mum has rarely hugged me, kissed me, told me she loved me or spent much time with me. When I wasn't in school, I was in my room fantasising about being my teacher's daughter. I can't go into detail very much, since around the age of 9, I was sexually abused and later developed depression and anxiety, so for me, everything is muddled up a bit.

In terms of being afraid to have this maternal relationship, I have read somewhere that it is normal. But for me, this problem has only started recently. This teacher was very kind to me, and I stayed in touch with her even after I left school. I never told her I felt depressed or I had been abused etc. But now that I'm 21, she has realised that something isn't "right". She asks me questions that I find awkward e.g. about my social life, moving out, becoming independent (because I haven't done any of those things). Now the problem is that I fear she is getting too close and that if she discovers the truth about my past, she will abandon me.

Trouble with relationships in general, again from somewhere I read, yes, it is normal because our first relationships are with our parents/caregivers. We learn a lot from them and how they interact with others, so we can end up repeating relationship difficulties. As there are other factors in my life as well, I did find it difficult making friends and got bullied. My mum can be controlling, so I also depend on her for everything, which means that others can sense the lack of independence and make things difficult. I sometimes depend on friends. One of my problems is if I have a boyfriend, I feel like I have to let my teacher go. Like I can either have a boyfriend and lose the maternal relationship or keep the relationship and not have a boyfriend. I'm still trying to figure this out, but it could be down to lots of things.

Other types of problems, well, the internet is your friend here. For me, I think the relationship with my mum is definitely a factor in low self esteem, low self confidence, anxiety, depression etc. I know that there are other factors in my life that also affect the same things, but generally if you have a "secure" attachment with parents, this can act as a buffer against these things, as parents are supposed to provide a safe environment to explore any difficulties and help to build up a child's confidence. I just didn't get that from my mum. I did from my dad, but that's another story.

Sorry this was a long post, hope I helped anyway
   
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Re: Mother/daughter issues - August 19th 2014, 03:18 PM

Hey,

Like the others, I can only give personal experience. I think that because my mom put me through so much stuff as a kid, I developed a bad relationship with her. For a long time, I sought out "mother figures" to turn to in my life. I've used my aunt/god mother and grandmother as people to turn to, and they appreciated that a lot. I also have friends that grew up without a mother figure and they turn to teachers quite a bit. I think it's normal to want a relationship with someone that resembles what a mother-daughter relationship should look like. I have trouble connecting with other people because of the fact that my mother and I have a bad relationship, but I do what I can. It sucks to have to seek out someone for that relationship when you could have your own mother, but it's worth it because you could form amazing bonds. Don't worry, there's nothing wrong with it.

I hope this helped. If you need anything, feel free to PM me. Take care.


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Re: Mother/daughter issues - August 20th 2014, 12:36 AM

thank you all for your helpful answers!


-GoLauren
   
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