Mothers & Daughters – Strengthening Bonds Across Generations
Author: Womens UN Report Network
Date: October 7, 2013
ENHANCING MOTHER-DAUGHTER RELATIONSHIPS
Strengthening the Bonds across the
Many mothers and daughters
across the world feel hurt and angry with each other, when historically they
used to enjoy a close relationship. Many feel misunderstood, let down, guilty,
and hurt by each other, while yearning to feel loved and supported. This huge
problem deserves to be understood and addressed.
As an experienced
professional in the mother-daughter relationship field, with international
experience, I see women and daughters searching to create the important
mother-daughter bonds that can be truly fulfilling, and meaningful to families
and across generations. The following facts help women understand today’s
dynamics between mothers and daughters.
lives have markedly changed over the past three generations due to changes in
women’s roles, increased mobility and immigration, broken and blended families,
and economic crises. These changes have created a ‘generation gap’ between
mothers and daughters. Daughters no longer live the same life their mothers
lived. Some experience this difference as a rejection, an abandonment of
traditional female beliefs, and a lack of connection and love. Some mothers
also feel jealous of their daughter’s choices and opportunities. Maternal
jealousy is a much hidden emotion that deserves to be heard and healed, rather
than hidden and shamed. It originates from mothers mourning their unfulfilled
dreams and opportunities.
underlying cause of mother-daughter conflict is the mistreatment of women.
Sexism, gender inequality, violence, and abuse harms a mother’s and daughter’s
ability to create a strong loving relationship. The focus of the relationship
becomes surviving the abuse and navigating the sexism rather than building
self-worth and an empowered female future.
and daughters need to know their mother-daughter history because it is their
roots and source of wisdom and power. Knowing the stories of her mother’s and
grandmothers’ lives eases the anger and blame a daughter can feel towards her
mother. It helps her understand how sexism and inequality limited her mother’s
choices and identifies the ‘good’ and ‘not-so-good’ themes and beliefs that she
and daughters need to learn how to say what they need, especially their
emotional needs. When a mother cannot voice her needs, she will unconsciously
expect her daughter to meet her needs for her. She will be unable to teach her
daughter how to voice and meet her own needs. Disowned and unexpressed
emotional needs make mothers and daughters hungry for each other’s attention
which causes many arguments.
mother-daughter relationship deserves to be a priority. Teaching and coaching
mothers and daughters to listen to each other and map their mother-daughter
history creates strong loving relationships where both feel heard, understood,
Rosjke Hasseldine MS
(Counseling) MNZAC MBACP (Accredited)
© 2013 Rosjke Hasseldine. All