The Mother & Daughter Relationship



Close your eyes and think about the woman you called Mama, Mommy, Mother, or Mom.  Even with her hair placed in curlers, teased, or ironed and sprayed, she became a Goddess defining beauty, love, and perfection.  As daughters, we often forget our first love relationship and the empowerment of being a woman began with a mother’s teachings. We all have a unique story.  Several mothers and daughters wanted to share theirs with you.

Relationship in Youth

Martha Chambers, age 78, raised four daughters and writes, “With the girls, I feel I have four best friends that I can talk openly about all the emotional things women consider important, while men do not like to broach such topics.” Chambers’ daughters, now spanning late 30s through late 50s, concur.  Lola, the youngest daughter, writes, “My mother and I had an unusual relationship.  At a time when most of my friends were rebelling, my mother could talk to me.  When our father died …that year cemented our relationship.  She opened up, talked to us about her feelings, and allowed us to ask any question. She became real.  A woman whom we could always approach and relate to.”

Establishing Roles of Respect

When a mother and daughter relationship is difficult, daughters sometimes learn from their own experiences to make a difference in the lives of their children.  Erin Brown shares, “My three daughters are an extension of me. I taught them lessons that I wish I learned.  In speaking about the realness of the world, I also allowed my girls to learn from decisions and mistakes.  Now, they are in their 20s, and my life with them couldn’t be happier.”

Mother as Friend

Beyond the years of guidance to become an adult, there comes a time when the relationship changes. Bobby-Jean writes, “I left home after college in 1980, never once thinking I would return.  As empty nesters, my husband and I decided to come back to the east coast three years ago. Mom was always strong willed, quick-to-comment, and independent. What I needed most, friendship, she had difficulty giving.  Now, as she nears her 80s, we have more heart-to-heart conversations. She has surrendered to help.  We laugh together, and despite the time-period, we are both very content.”

The Mother Figure

An extension of your family comes with the connection of mother figures. Jane Daniels, age 32, writes, “As a young social butterfly in youth, I was a charismatic child.  I became a helper to our neighbor, a young woman, then, with children.  When you love someone, you carry them on your life journey, sharing intimate stories and reaching out when advice was needed.  I am an extension of this non-related woman I call Mom, who feels the same about me.  I love learning about her difficulties and happiness.  Through my unique and valuable relationship, it has ultimately helped me better understand my mother.  I am blessed and grateful for the extraordinary strong women in my life.”

The Grand-Mommy Influence

The intergenerational relationship between grandmother and grandchild is a mutual give-and-take.  Grandmothers can easily play the role of confidant, receiving secret dreams and fears, and providing in return wisdom and stories of experience.  Jenny Patterson writes, “My grandmother, Alice, lived next door to us.  She was an extension of my mother.  Through Grand-Mommy, I learned about my mother’s childhood, character, and life that perhaps helped me better understand her, and how I am similar and my own person.  I am an independent and strong person because of my mother and grandmother. Grand-Mommy Alice is a great-grandmother, and she has the delicate task of retelling the stories of her daughter and granddaughter.”

Happy Mother’s Day to all the women who are mothers, step-mothers, expecting mothers, and the exceptional second-mothers!  It is a blessing to be part of a child’s life and carry them through each stage and chapter.  And, the pride of being a child, who is blessed by the love, support, and strength of a “Mom!”


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