Family Relationships

Join other women in the sandwich generation - share ideas and solutions as you learn to nourish family relationships without starving yourself.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mother's Day: A Difficult Mom and Forgiveness

With Mother's Day right around the corner, make sure you get some of what you need. And that could include the gift of forgiveness. But first:

Be clear about what you're willing to do. Perhaps your mother is older and still has unreasonable expectations of you but doesn't value what you do for her. What you get in return may be criticism, arguments or tantrums. Try your best to stick to your rules by writing a list of what you will tolerate. And don’t assume that you have to do it all alone. Talk openly and honestly about how you feel and encourage other family members to pitch in and do their share. Maintain firm boundaries as you handle these challenges.

Refuse to respond to unrealistic demands - or even realistic ones that you can't meet because of how you feel or other commitments. You can create a more balanced sense of wellbeing by setting limits, especially if your mother is verbally abusive. You don't have to continue to identify with the role of the victim. Although you may not be able to change what happens to you, you can change how you handle it. Consider the possibility of seeing a therapist or coach. Learning how to self soothe and manage your moods will help you feel more in control of your life.
medium shot of a young adult female as she leans over a large christmas gift
As you continue to work on getting what you need and want, think about the possibility of offering forgiveness. Granted, your mom may have been incredibly damaging, making it difficult to accept yourself or trust others. But know that forgiving your mother for who she is and what she did to you doesn't necessarily excuse her actions. And starting to extinguish the feelings of rejection and resentment can mark a new beginning for you – a Mother's day gift that you give yourself, freeing you from the past.

For more support in starting this process, look to the left of this post and join the email list - you can download our complimentary ebook, Courage and Lessons Learned and free newsletter, Stepping Stones.

And don't forget to log on here tomorrow for our monthly Virtual Book Tour with Gary Zukav, author of the #1 New York Times best seller, The Seat of the Soul. Gary will be doing a Q&A about Spiritual Partnership: The Journey to Authentic Power. You'll be able to ask Gary questions by clicking on "Comments" at the bottom of the post.

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