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Mother-daughter relationships are tricky. It seems as though mothers and daughters are either best friends or mortal enemies.
The relationship I have with my daughter is currently very good. The relationship I have with my own mom?
Not so great. What causes one relationship to thrive while the other fails?
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Why Do Daughters Hate Their Mothers?
Some mothers and daughters do not have good relationships. This could be caused by a rift between the two of them, mistakes on the part of the mother or issues that the daughter is going through. Hatred is not a cause but a symptom of something much larger that needs to be addressed.
Does She Really Hate You?
It is far too easy to make assumptions. Your daughter may be going through a phase. This is especially common during the teen years.
As your daughter strives to claim her independence, she might test you or push you away. This doesn’t mean she hates you. It means she is trying to figure out who she is.
It could be that your daughter doesn’t want to spend as much time with you as she once did. Again, this doesn’t mean she hates you. She is developing her own personality.
She has friends who share her interests and experiences. She needs to spend some time away from you. That is healthy behavior, not hatred.
She might have a mental health issue that has nothing to do with you. She could have an anxiety disorder or suffer from depression.
This can manifest in behavioral disorders directed toward the people who are closest to her. If you suspect she may have a mood disorder, talk with her doctor. Professional help might be necessary.
Are You the One to Blame?
It’s easy for daughters to blame their mothers. We are arguably the most influential figures in their lives as they grow.
Sometimes we are falsely accused. Other times we have to own our mistakes. Hopefully, we learn from our mistakes before it’s too late to fix them.
The problems with my own mother are complex. She lied to me. She hid things from my father and asked me to keep her secrets. She paid very little attention to me.
She didn’t attend any of my school events or even my high school graduation. She regularly told me that I wasn’t very smart, wasn’t very pretty and that if I wanted to get married I would have to “trick” someone into marrying me by getting pregnant.
That is just the tip of the iceberg in a glacier of issues we have.
A few years ago, I tried to heal our fractured relationship with an honest, open talk. She told me that I was exaggerating, being overly dramatic and outright lying.
I finally gave up and realized I would never have a good relationship with her if she wasn’t willing to think about the problems we needed to discuss.
You might not have the same issues with your daughter but you should try to look at your relationship from her perspective.
Something that you might not find very important could be the catalyst that caused her to act out against you.
What Can You Do?
Find the root of the problem in your relationship. The best way, perhaps the only way, is to ask her. Don’t be judgmental, accusing or emotional.
Tell her that you want to work on your mother-daughter relationship and ask her what you can do to make things better. Listen when she speaks.
Don’t react defensively or with anger. Don’t make excuses. If her problem with you is something that you can fix, fix it.
Unfortunately, most kids are reluctant to talk about their feelings. They might scream about them sometimes, but having a rational conversation about them is uncommon.
Your daughter’s answers to your questions might be a shrug, an eyeroll or a somber “I dunno.”
Be warned: the shrugs, eyerolls and “I dunnos” get even more obnoxious during the teenage years. If your daughter doesn’t want to open up, ask her about her friends.
Ask if she has any friends who have issues with their mothers and what those issues might be. She is likely to focus on those things that resonate with her. This can give you a glimpse into her feelings about you.
There may be other reasons your daughter is acting out. She could be having problems at school, which she then brings home.
Her displaced anger is focused on you because you are the person who is closest to her. Find out what her problems are and help her manage them.
If you do believe your daughter has a mood disorder, seek counseling.
In fact, you might want to look into family counseling regardless of the cause of the anger. An impartial third party can help you both open up and discuss what is happening in your family.
Does your daughter hate you? Probably not. But if she does, there are a few things you can do to remedy this cracked relationship before it breaks in two.
What are some of the experiences you have had with an angry daughter? Share your story in the comments.