Thursday, July 01, 2004

Mothers and daughters

Is there a different relationship dynamic between mothers and daughters and fathers and sons? The familial pulls in both situations are very strong, but I think there is something unique in the Mother/Daughter relationship that men just don't get.

Take, for instance, last night. As my husband and I were eating dinner, Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood came on. Although I have seen it on several previous occasions, I still enjoy watching it. The story of lifelong friends is somewhat foreign to a kid who moved around a lot during childhood, but yet it is still captivating.

As I was drawn yet again into the alternately funny and sad story, my husband asked my why the mother and daughter were behaving that way. What do you mean why? I thought to myself. How could anyone miss the basic premise of this movie?

ALL mothers and daughters behave that way even if in most cases it is not that extreme. I think most women throughout their lives would say that a relationship between mother and daughter is a love/hate one fraught with many pitfalls and just as many soaring joys. Your mother is the one whom you love unfalteringly as a child, then she is the one you can't stand in high school and sometimes on into college. Then you get married and have children, and there she is again, all of a sudden much more knowledgeable that you previous thought. It's often an uphill battle for many daughters like Siddalee to forgive whatever "mistakes" their mothers made. I am one of those daughters, but as I grew into adulthood and forgave myself and my mother for the way things happened, I found that the dynamic between mother and daughter, no matter how damaged, can always be repaired if only a little at a time.

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