Relationship expert Jason Fierstein shares tips for women who tend to act motherly toward their husband.
I want to give you three tips to help you de-mommy yourself from your marriage or a relationship. The first thing is to become aware that you’re doing it because nothing is going to change if you don’t become aware of it. So taking a step out of your life and how can you do that?
Well, you can get feedback from someone, ideally your partner but sometimes we’re resistant to doing that. So becoming aware that you are doing it, putting on another point of view; “Well, am I acting like my mom in this situation? Do I feel like I am being a parent to someone?” I think we need to understand our blind spots to be able to move forward.
So taking a look in the mirror really has to happen before anything else and again, getting that feedback from someone, and if you’re not comfortable with your partner giving that to you then seek out some professional counseling to get that too.
Another warning sign is if your guy starts to avoid or withdraw and you know intuitively something is happening like good female intuition can tell you and he is on the fringes out here, that’s really the second red flag about knowing that you may be mommying too much, if this is a problem and if you have identified that this is a problem. So that’s the second thing.
And also making sure that the balance of power goes both ways because mommying implies a certain power and control dynamic; “I want to just mommy him and I want to control him.” You may not be conscious of that but that’s what’s happening and so shifting the balance of power, and you can simply do this by inviting him to do things rather than kind of telling him to do things which is what I mean when I say ‘mommying’, kind of mommying and kind of telling him,”Okay, you’re going to do it this way,” and so inviting him, asking him as an adult-to-an-adult instead of the parent-child relationship is going to go a long way – the invitation, as opposed to pushing it on him.
About Jason Fierstein, M.A., L.P.C.:
I am a State of Arizona board-licensed professional counselor practicing in Phoenix. My master’s degree is in psychology, with a counseling emphasis, and I have a post-graduate certification in Gestalt Therapy. I have been counseling a variety of different clients for nine years, and have been practicing privately for five.