I don’t think my mother thinks that I love her.
I do, of course. I love her more than I could ever possibly even describe in words. My heart at times aches with the grandeur that is my love for my mother. In fact, one of my recent midterm essays was on how much I love my mother and respect her and admire her and hope I’m just like her when I grow up.
And I think that’s exactly the problem. Growing up. I’m not the vapid little teenager who is acting like she is full grown before her time, thinking my mother is CLEARLY from the olden times and doesn’t know a damn thing about anything. I’m not the child who needs my mothers love, protection, and attention at all times. I’m not the 19 year old who has just figured out that my mother ISN’T as insane as I once accused her of being, and was actually SO right about EVERYTHING and now I want to consult her on every single detail of my life before making a single move. And I’m beyond the 21 year old who simply needs a never-ending ATM and on-call shoulder to cry on who otherwise is relatively irrelevant to my life, except for times when I’m sick or otherwise incapacitated and need the kind of TLC only a mother could offer. Or who can occasionally play maid.
But the thing is, I’m not quite grown yet. I understand each and every role that I’ve played in the relationship with my mother, but as they say, hindsight is twenty-twenty. I’m in my mid twenties, still pursuing a bachelor’s degree, with a plethora of health problems and no ring on my finger. I can take a very realistic look at my life and understand that others at my age are full grown adults, with careers, houses, fiancées, families, etc. But the reality is that I’m not. Well, not quite. Maybe that’s where the true problem lies. That I’ve grown up, but only half way. And that mother’s like to feel needed. But I only need her half-way.
Let me try and explain myself. For example, I may turn to my mother and ask her to help me financially until, say, my OSAP comes in. Or to help me make ends meet half-way through a semester. But because I’m an adult, I only want her help at that time, just that once, and afterwards I want her to leave it alone. Don’t ask me every 5 minutes if I’m OK, or if I’m eating, or whatever else. I don’t need her to arrange or rearrange my life, but because I’m in this halfway stage I may need her to come to my aid. When I ask. And then afterwards trust that I can take care of myself. That if I needed more help I’m at the age that I would ask. And if I don’t, she should assume that even if I’m eating ramen noodles every night that I’m OK with that because I have made my choices and need to stand on my own two feet.
The other thing is, I feel bad as hell whenever I need to ask her for anything, whether its money, a shoulder to cry on, some help with my medical issues, or whatever else. I feel entirely inadequate, primarily because I know that at 25 I should be able to take care of myself. And because I don’t want her to have to take care of me, or worry about me anymore. So when I doggedly ask for her assistance in some way, I also need that emotional space and time after admitting to the shameful fact that I suck, to pull myself together and get myself back on my feet, so the next time I speak to her I can show her that I’m OK, that everything is fixed, and that she did a good job raising me and that I’m not some complete failure. OK, so perhaps I am a bit harsher on myself than she’d ever be on me, but gosh darn it, that’s how I feel about it.
But then, when I’m at that point of total avoidance, I can hear it in her voice. In her attitude. In her tone. She thinks I don’t love her. That is so not it though. I think the problem is I love her with all my soul. And I want her to be proud of me. I want to be the kind of person that she can be proud of, never doubt. And I want to grow the f*** up already and stop being her problem.
Sorry for the emo rant. Meh, it happens sometimes. Mommies are good people. Mine is the best. Don’t think I’m complaining about her, I know I’m blessed to no end to have her.
5 thoughts on “Growing Pains: My Mother Thinks I Don't Love Her”
Awwwww!! Dont worry shes a woman so she knows all of the pains and struggles we go threw as we are growing up! She knows you love her she probably just cant wait for the day where you are where you need to be so you feel whole
I know me and mine went threw the same thing and even though things arent perfect we are finally hitting being on the same page with things. And now we laugh and share all those little details, so dont worry you and your will get there soon!