Some daughters were given mothers who love, care, and are concerned with their child’s well-being. Other daughters weren’t as fortunate.

A lack of maternal warmth can negatively affect a daughter’s sense of self or a lack in self-confidence.

Here are a few common mother-daughter relationships:

  • Dismissive: A mother who dismisses or undercuts a daughter; leaves daughter feeling unworthy of attention and/or extreme self-doubt
  • Unreliable: Mother’s emotions dependent of audience: critical or dismissive of daughter when alone together; happy and fussing over daughter in public.
  • Self-involved: A manipulator, incapable of empathy and concerned with the opinions of others.  Her connection to her daughter is superficial because her focus is on herself.
  • Role-reversal: The daughter, even at a young age, becomes the caretaker to her own mother. Occurs when the mother has children very young, has more of them than she can actually handle, and/or has a substance abuse problem.
  • Best friends: Sometimes a daughter needs a parent, not a partner in crime.

Regardless of the relationship you have or had with your mother, there’s always room for improvement. Here are a few keys to positively fix your relationship:

  • Objective thinking: A neutral mindset to rely on the facts in order to separate reason from emotion. Objectivity promotes clarity.
  • Set up a meeting: Schedule a time and place to meet. Let her know what the meeting is about so that she won’t feel blindsided.
  • Have the conversation: Begin by identifying the positive aspects of the relationship and what you appreciate about her. Then you can go into some of the aspects of the relationship that aren’t working for you, and that you’d like to work on changing.
  • Move forward: The healing process can be difficult, and there is no uniform way to heal. It all depends on the mother and daughter, their willingness to work on their relationship, and how scarred their relationship is.
  • Learn from your own maternal relationship: When it comes to your own daughter and how you will raise her, consider your own relationship. What aspects of your relationship do you want to have with your own daughter? What do you want to work on? What do you want your daughter to know about you and about life?

We touched on how to help in repairing broken relationships in this blog post, but it’s important to note that sometimes the best way to heal yourself is to rid yourself of the toxic person. We can’t possibly know the relationship you have with your own mother or daughter, or know if it’s worth saving.

If you feel that your relationship has caused you pain and negatively affects important aspects your life today, please consider seeing a therapist to help with your healing. A difficult or abusive relationship with your mother can affect you for the rest of your life, especially if allowed to fester without being talked about. A therapist can help you talk through your strained relationship and give you options on how to heal based on your needs.

If you’d like to set up a time to meet up with Reka, you can contact her by phone at 402-881-8125, by email at, or via Twitter or Facebook.

photo credit: Cosy’s Handspun Hats via photopin (license)