Mother's Day and Your Mother Issues: The Bipolar Question of the Week

John McManamy Health Guide
  • Tomorrow is Mother’s Day. You know the drill. But what about if you have issues about your mother? What then?


    I’m not prepared to air my mother issues in public. All you need to know is that all of my life I had to deal with a certain cognitive dissonance between what society saw as the ideal and what I experienced in reality. Then, it seemed, everyone woke up to the fact that there was no such thing as a Leave It to Beaver mom. Every family, in fact was dysfunctional, but this realization came at its own price, namely that my experiences were no different than anyone else’s. 


    So now there really had to be something wrong with me. Unlike everyone else, I couldn’t just get over it and put on a happy face. Heaven knows, I tried. My whole life, virtually, in my mind, I made excuses for my mother, cut her some slack, tried to see things through her eyes. This got me nowhere. Over the years, as the Mother’s Days came and went, I only experienced a deepening sense of alienation.  

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    At long last, I decided the hell with it. No more making excuses for her, no more cutting her some slack. Instead, it was time to validate my own experiences and perceptions. I was not casting blame, not being a victim, not making excuses for myself. I was simply acknowledging a very unpretty reality. The other realities didn’t work.


    Once I made this shift in my mind - that was when the healing started. I could move forward with my life. In the meantime, I can celebrate a different kind of Mother’s Day - in honor of the fine mother my daughter has come. I can also gratefully acknowledge the excellent job my ex-wife did in raising my daughter. But my own mother? I’m not going to let her ruin my Mother’s Day.


    Okay, I know a lot of you feel as conflicted as me. Mother’s Day can be a hard time for many of you. You’re not alone. You’re in a safe place. Question:


    What thoughts and feelings come up for you this Mother’s Day? How are you handling the situation?


    Comments below ... 

Published On: May 11, 2013