I don’t love my mother – why and what to do

The parent-child relationship is not always easy. People believe that in such a system, mutual love is an inseparable characteristic. It’s a good thing when it is. But it happens that children and parents experience one-sided or mutual indifference, resentment, and even hatred. It is difficult to accept such feelings for several reasons:

  1. Social rejection.Society encourages a warm, kind, love-filled relationship with your mother. Social stamps of behavior tell us to treat the one who gave life with a sense of respect and awe. These stereotypes are buried deep in the subconscious. It’s scary to give up on them and get a barrage of indignation from those around you and yourself.

  2. Guilt. Inability to fully comprehend, accept and live through negative feelings about the mother is a consequence of guilt and shame about them. Avoidance of hard experiences postpones introspection, which results in acceptance.

  3. Ambiguity in the mother-child relationship.Some parents are inconsistent in their parenting and apply “double standards”. This sets off an inner conflict in children: on the one hand they are negative for cruelty and injustice, on the other hand they are grateful for displays of understanding, caring.

I do not love my mother - why and what to do

The love between parent and child is formed on the basis of emotional attachment. Its conception occurs at the moment of a child’s birth. The pathological course of this fundamental process entails a distortion of the emotional relationship in the mother-child system. In the theory of attachment formed by the English psychotherapist working within the framework of psychoanalysis, J.J. D. Hughes, a psychotherapist who has been working within the framework of psychoanalysis. Bowlby, reflects 6 types of parenting behavior that produce disturbances in attachment formation:

  1. Emotional depression in a child by a parentThe mother’s lack of attention, lack of response to her attempts to get love, care and affection (or both). That is, indifference to a young child later generates his indifference to them.

  2. Artificial triggering of guilt in the child.Parental behavior that causes false guilt in the child (shifting responsibility, psychological transference, etc.).d.).

  3. Heated RelationshipsBetween parents with threats of direct physical violence. The demonstration of such behavior destroys the child’s ideas about the institution of the family and breaks attachment.

  4. Threats to leave the child. They leave a deep imprint on the psyche. Growing up, he will not be able to fully appreciate the emotional closeness with another person, because all possible efforts to avoid it.

  5. Manipulating love for a child. Threats that the parent will stop loving the baby if he does not live up to his expectations kill the attachment at the base.

  6. Absence of a parent from the child’s life for a long period of time. This may not be an intentional reason (a long hospital stay, a trip to work, etc.).d.). However, it influences the formation of feelings in the parent-child system.

It is worth noting that dislike for the mother is not always formed in childhood. It can arise at any point in the relationship. This kind of inquiry is easier to work with than deeply formed resentment. In the article presented, you will learn about the causes of your mother’s lack of love, and what to do if you encounter this problem.


It is difficult to name all the reasons why feelings for the mother disappear. This issue is dealt with on a case-by-case basis based on an in-depth analysis of the relationship. In psychological practice, based on the data on consultations on similar requests, the following approximate list of problems has been put forward. Most of them have their origins in childhood. This is a sensitive period for the birth of emotional intimacy with parents. The child is born with an initial inclination to love. Its earnestness is killed by parental tactics of upbringing and relationship building. The following table shows the reasons why children become cold or have negative feelings toward a parent.



Influencing the relationship

Ignoring emotional needs

The mother rejects the child’s emotional outbursts, and does not show affectionate feelings in return.

The mother does not show empathy, understanding. In stressful situations, the child is left alone with her problems and worries.

She does not show love physically or verbally: does not hug or kiss.

A grown-up toddler stops believing in himself or herself. He cannot build a harmonious, healthy relationship with his loved one. Remembering his mother’s callousness, coldness, he understands that the reason lies in her. For this, he experiences negative feelings.

Lack of interest in the child’s inner world

Mother is not interested in the child’s hobbies and thoughts.

Ignores his talents and abilities.

Avoiding heart-to-heart conversations.

Not supportive in difficult situations.

In adulthood, these tactics lead to resentment toward our mother and limiting our time with her to a minimum.

Physical/emotional abuse

Humiliating the child’s dignity.

Ignoring basic needs (food, sleep, safety).

Using physical force as punishment for misconduct, etc.d.

This parenting strategy inflicts a deep wound on the child’s personality. Growing up, he is likely to feel only hatred for his mother. It will take him a long time to realize that he is not the reason for his mother’s behavior.

Comparing the child to others, focusing on other people’s opinions

The mother often says, “you wonder what people will say” or “you imagine what other people will think.”.

Any achievement of the child is compared to that of another child.

Son or daughter gets the feeling that mom only loves them because society demands it.

Develops deep feelings of resentment, misunderstanding. In the future, the child will try to please everyone in order to get approval. But he won’t want his mother’s approval anymore.

Transferring negative experiences

After a hard day, the mother lashes out at the child.

A Troubles in her personal life are carried over into her relationship with her child.

Experiencing undeserved negativity directed at himself or herself.

Result in lasting resentment toward the mother and unconscious guilt about her failures. In adulthood, he is likely to avoid communication with his mother.

Inadequately high level of expectations, transferring his unachieved goals to the child.

Shows warm feelings only if the child has acted according to her wishes.

Ignore their true desires and aspirations.

Imposing their opinions.

He is severely criticized for the slightest failure.

Ego boosts at the expense of their child’s accomplishments.

An inferiority complex is formed in the child, and a constant desire to please the mother, to earn her love. Growing up, will limit contact with her or cut her out of his life altogether.

Breaches personal boundaries

Mother limits the child’s areas of independent action.

Does not value his or her opinions and suppresses autonomy at the base.

Imposes her views, values, and opinions against his will.

Controls all areas of life.

The child develops persistent aggression toward his mother, which he suppresses in adult life as well.

Cultivates feelings of guilt in the child

Depreciating the child’s hobbies, tastes and opinions.

Showing a caustic, destructive criticism of his achievements.

The mother makes comments about how her life is made worse by his arrival.

She talks about her sacrifices made for his well-being.

In response to this interaction, the mature child will choose one of two possible tactics of behavior:

Will begin to devalue the parent (as well as other people) in response.

Will avoid destructive relationships.

oValuing feelings

The mother scolds the child for crying.

Not recognizing his right to suffer, to be sad, to be sad.

When the child tries to share experiences, she devalues them.

The mature toddler becomes cold and tends to suppress negative emotions. And with my mother is no longer able to build an emotional, trusting relationship.

Indifference, coldness

With a proper attitude approaches only the implementation of basic needs, believing that this is enough for the education of children.

Isn’t accepting the child’s attempts to draw attention to herself.

Getting angry at displays of affection, keeping hugs and any other physical contact to a minimum.

NeverDoes not speak of loveand doesn’t show it.

The result of such tactics will be mutual indifference and coldness. When a mother wants the attention of her grown-up child, the child brushes off a conversation with her, as she once did.


The mother does not believe in the strength of the child and constantly tells him so.

She’s not preoccupied with her creative and emotional needs.

She does not praise or encourage him.

Children trying to prove to the mother that she is wrong. Some reach serious heights in an attempt to earn her praise. But inside remains a sense of desolation and resentment.

Lack of love for the mother should not cause guilt or shame. Social standards are very conventional and often do not work in a particular situation. The first step toward a solution is to get rid of the imposed social behavior patterns.

What to do if I don't love my mother

What to do if I don’t love my mother

Working through such deep feelings should be done in cooperation with a psychologist or psychotherapist. Why, you ask? As a result of consultations, the strongest negative experiences which were suppressed with a defense mechanism will come to light. It will be difficult to cope with them alone, so it’s a good idea to see a psychologist. If that’s not possible, try some of the techniques presented, with different goals.

The “I Forgive Myself” Technique

Goal: become aware of problem points, let go of complexes, resentments, and get emotional relief.

Progression of execution. Lie down and imagine that you are in a comfortable place for you, where you feel good and comfortable. Then imagine the hard feelings you’ve been holding toward yourself and say out loud that you forgive yourself for them. For example, “I forgive myself for my clumsiness,” “I forgive myself for my occasional laziness,” “I forgive myself for being static in my career,” etc.d. These thoughts arise from free association. That is, you say whatever comes to mind first.

The technique of “I forgive you

Objective: to model a dialogue, to pour out the experiences, to prepare for real action.

How to proceed. Imagine that your mother is sitting in front of you. Think about what you feel for her: anger, hurt, sadness, resentment. Then think about where your feelings come from? What exactly are you experiencing them for?? Afterwards, say out loud, in your mother’s image, that you forgive her. For example, “I forgive you for your coldness toward me,” “I forgive you for your unmotivated rudeness,” and so on.d.

Hypothetical Performance Technique

Goal: to understand the motives of the mother, to come to a conclusion about the reasons of difficulties in the relations with her.

How to do it. Imagine the image of your mother as a child. Think about what kind of child she was. What she liked, what she looked like, what she did. Afterward, imagine the kind of relationship she had with her parents. What was going on in their family and how did she feel in these circumstances?. Think about whether she was happy as a child or had negative feelings.

The Prioritizing Technique

Purpose: To analyze your life goals and reference points, to realize your independence from your mother’s influence, to leave the past behind and start living in the future.

Progression. Grab a piece of paper and a pen. Then write an essay called “My Last Day.”. What would you do if you had one day to live? What you should have had time for? What is the last wish you would make? After you reread the text and highlight your main priorities. These are the goals and aspirations that are truly relevant to you. Concentrate on them. This would be the first step from a traumatic past to a happy future.


The easiest answer to the question, “What should I do if I don’t love my mother?” is to let go of the relationship and allow yourself to be a happy person. But this particular solution is very difficult. The imposed standards, sitting in the subconscious, do not give us a chance to fully acknowledge, live through these feelings and let go. I hope you can cope with this burden and find harmony.

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