- Dr. Love in the Media
Girl Whose Mom Doesn't Like Her Boyfriend
September 4, 2000 Ask Dr. Love Advice Column
I'm 17 years old, and have been going out with my 19 year old boyfriend for 2 years and three months. It's a great relationship, and I am generally very happy with him.
The problem is my mom. About a month ago, she just snapped and told me that I'm too good for him, that I won't get anything out the relationship, and that I better 'buckle down'and find someone better.
Of course, I was completely heartbroken. It was very much like a slap in the face, and an insult. She has since apologized, but now it's like everytime I go out with my boyfriend, I feel like I am doing something wrong. It has made me very anxious and depressed. I want to please my mom and make her happy, but I also don't wan't to break things off with my boyfriend prematurely. Please help me!
Your mom did a terrible thing. She opened her mouth and inserted her foot, breaking your heart in the process. I know that you say you are anxious and depressed. You didn't tell me that you are angry, which I am sure you are.
She has placed you in an awful bind. Please her and deny your heart, or listen to your heart and displease her. I am worried that you are on the verge of pleasing her when I hear you say I don't want to break things off PREMATURELY. The word prematurely means that you are planning to break off with him, you just don't want to do it too soon! You need to find out why you would allow your mother 's negative judgment rule you.
So what if she doesn't like your choice? She isn't with him, you are? Why did your mother need to sabotage your relationship? You sound level headed to me, and if you think that he's a worthy partner, then why can't your mother see what you see?
I am wondering if your mother is jealous, possessive and unwilling to let you go? Sounds like she has you wrapped around her finger. She seems to know just what to say to make you jump.
If I were you, I would examine the entire nature of your relationship. Understand the deeper motivations of her comment; why she needed to break you up; why she wouldn't let you decide for yourself who is right for you; why you feel the need to please her at your own expense.
If she won't go to family therapy with you, then you go on your own. And, don't, I repeat don't, break up with this boy until you understand much more about the deeper dynamics that drove her to do what she did, as well as what drives you to obey her against your own better judgment.
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