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Mother Figure Obsession

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Mother Figure Obsession

Postby alese » Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:58 am

I am totally new to this site, so if I have posted this in the wrong forum...I'm sorry.
Here's my problem. I grew up with a very ill mother, I took care of her....really my whole childhood was wrapped up with taking care of her. I loved her, and I still do. She has been dead for ten years now. When I was younger I always dreamed of a mother who would take care of me. I would look for ppl in my comunity who I thought would take an interest in me. I'm in my late 20's and I still do that. I am constantly trying to find a mother figure that will nuture and guide me. I am very good (or so I think) at hiding this to the "mother figure" that I am seeking. It never works out...they don't swoop down to help me the way I want. I know it's foolish...I even expect the disapointment. But I still can't kick this habit of desiring a mother. I am so tired of this, and I want it to go away, but I don't know how to make this stop. If anyone could give me some advice...I would greatly appreciate it! Truly...this is wearing me out! Thank you in advance to all who respond!
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Postby jasmin » Fri Feb 01, 2008 7:42 am

Hi, alese! Welcome to the forum. I think I know a little bit about how you feel. I grew up with a mother who was abusive and not nurturing and I look for a mother figure too. I have friends and one friend in particular who help fill that void and I feel like I'm being taken care of now. You have to give too when you're someone's friend. That creats ballance and it's healthyer that way.
Talking about my feelings here has been very helpful and you can do that too. Maybe you could find a friend that you can trust and feel safe with, but try to take things slowly and make them feel protected and loved too.
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Postby plicketycat » Fri Feb 01, 2008 7:42 am

It's very common for people who didn't have good parents or had to take care of their parents to continue to seek out an all-loving, benevolent figure to meet our unmet childhood needs. We can look for that person in elders, peers, lovers... and most tragically, our own children (continuing the cycle).

Unfortunately, as you've found out yourself, it is impossible to find another person who will love, support, and nurture you as unconditionally as your parent should have when you were a child. The only solution for this is become a good parent to your inner child. It sounds odd, but you are the only person who is capable of loving you unconditionally. I would recommend finding some support, either a group or a therapist, to help you with this journey if you're having trouble.
It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not. --- Andre Gide

Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live. --- Oscar Wilde
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Postby alese » Fri Feb 01, 2008 1:28 pm

Thank you both for your replys; they are helpful to me. My "mother figure" is always a friend that is older than me. I do my best to be a good friend to them...going the extra mile so that it seems to me that I am doing more of the giving...so that they like me. However, deep in my heart I know the whole reason why I started the friendship was because I wanted them to mother me. That to me, is very selfish. I don't want to do it anymore. Which stinks, because I have a great friend now, but in the back of my mind I'm always thinking that maybe, just maybe she'll want to take care of me.
So....from what I'm understanding is that I need to accept that I'm the only one who can take care of me the best. I know that sounds simple to do. But is it just a mind thing where I have to consistantly say to myself that I'm the only one who can take care of me every time a thought pops into my head about my "mother figure?" Thanks for letting me just blab here....this site is a life saver! :)
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Postby jasmin » Fri Feb 01, 2008 3:59 pm

Plick is right. You have to get used to taking care of yourself.
I'm glad you have a good friend. Maybe you can tell her that you have this need for a mother and that you're happy to have her in your life so you won't feel like you're using her. I think she might understand where you're coming from and still be your friend.
You can "blab" here all you want :D
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Postby plicketycat » Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:56 pm

I know it's hard to break the habit, but taking time everyday to love your inner child will help. I find that multi-media journaling (writing, drawing, collaging) really helps... I mean, what "child" doesn't like coloring and doing "art projects". You can get your feelings and needs expressed and then work out ways to support and comfort yourself. Talking this issue out with your friend may help you (and her) deal with your need for a mother figure before you get to attached to her in that unhealthy way.

Here are some books that might help you. While they do tend toward abusive narcissism and not parental illness they do explain what happens to you (the child) when you were responsible for caring for your parent instead of the other way around:

Lost Childhoods: The Plight Of The Parentified Child by Gregor Jurkovic

Children of the Self-absorbed: A Grown-up's Guide to Getting over Narcissistic Parents by Nina W. Brown

Why Is It Always About You? : The Seven Deadly Sins of Narcissism
It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not. --- Andre Gide

Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live. --- Oscar Wilde
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Postby alese » Fri Feb 01, 2008 8:27 pm

Thank you both for your advice, it's priceless. I now have a starting point and some practical ways for dealing with this. Thanks. I plan to get the books ordered today or tomorrow. Thank you both again. Seriously...it's a relief!
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Postby jasmin » Fri Feb 01, 2008 9:06 pm

I hope those books help you and I'm happy we were able to help a little bit too. Maybe you could talk to a therapist as well if you can find a good one.
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Postby alese » Sat Feb 02, 2008 4:36 am

You know I've thought about talking with a therapist, but I'm kind of afraid of it! :) But, maybe it might help. What would they do? Would they help me by giving me stuff to do, or do they just listen? I guess I'm a bit afraid of really opening up to a person face to face about this issue. I'm embarressed. It's one thing to post anonymously on a forum, it's different to actually talk with someone face to face. I hoping the books will help me. If they don't I will do my best to see someone.
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Postby jasmin » Sat Feb 02, 2008 10:29 am

Don't worry about it, alese. You can do any thing that makes you feel comfortable. Not all therapists are the same and they don't all work the same. I found a really bad one and I don't go to therapy. If you'll feel better with the help of those books and maybe by talking with your friend, you don't have to do anything that makes you feel weird.
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