HOW TO DEAL WITH A TRICKY MUM

Irish Daily Mail - YOU - - MOTHER’S DAY -

1 Try to un­der­stand your mother bet­ter and how her child­hood im­pacted on her. Ask about her re­la­tion­ship with her mother. You will dis­cover her be­hav­iour is not only a re­ac­tion to you. 2 Write a let­ter you’re not go­ing to send. This is pow­er­ful if you no longer speak to your mother. Imag­ine your­self at a sig­nif­i­cant year in your child­hood and write down every­thing you were un­able to say – it will make you feel lighter and less re­sent­ful. 3 For­give her in your heart. She did her best at the time and what she thought was right. 4 Rather than wait­ing for her to change, come up with one small thing you could change – for ex­am­ple, count to ten when she says some­thing up­set­ting. 5 Keep it adult to adult. In­stead of fall­ing into old child­hood pat­terns – such as sulk­ing, peo­ple pleas­ing or re­belling – try ask­ing, ‘What did you mean by that?’ or, ‘Why do we brush each other up the wrong way?’ 6 Make it ex­tra-spe­cial. Tell your mother what you ap­pre­ci­ate about her rather than as­sum­ing she knows. The more spe­cific the com­pli­ment, for ex­am­ple, ‘I love the way you read the chil­dren’s bed­time story,’ the more pow­er­ful it is. n An­drew G Mar­shall is the au­thor of Wake Up and Change Your Life: How To Sur­vive a Cri­sis and Be Stronger, Wiser and Hap­pier (Mar­shall Method Pub­lish­ing, €18.99); an­drewg­mar­shall.com

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