They say a mother’s love is unconditional. That’s what they say at least.

But my mother’s love, if you’ll even call it that, comes at a price. Hers comes with terms and conditions that she can change at any time like those scammy timeshares you see online. 

My mother’s love is full of manipulation and control. If I dare to even question it, I am an ungrateful person. She then gaslights the situation, blaming me for any problems. She sees no problem or acknowledges any fault in anything. 

RELATED: My Toxic Mother Tears Me Down, But I Will Rise Above

Everyone she sees outside of the home will tell you she’s the best person, but they don’t know the real her she reserves for her family. 

My children are even fair game. She will attempt to parent them and control them how she sees fit. She thrives off shaming and boasting about all she does for me, even if I didn’t ask for help or need it. Her giving is thrust upon me.  

When I finally do stand up to her and try to establish boundaries, those boundaries are met as obscene demands, and the hurtful words come out to play. 

RELATED: I Was Never Good Enough for My Mother, So I’m Done Trying

I think somewhere deep down she has love somewhere. I hope anyway. 

But for now, I’ll just have to love her, if I even can, from afar. Because this is not what a mother’s love should be. 

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Ashley Travous

Ashley is a 39-year-old mother of five, starting life over again after 18 years of marriage. 

A Mother/Daughter Bond Should Be Unbreakable, but Sometimes It Isn’t

In: Grown Children, Living
Frowning woman holding phone

It’s OK to grieve your absent parents while they’re still alive. I see so many articles or well-meaning posts from people who had beautiful relationships with their parents and are now grieving their loss. It’s amazing to read about such incredible parent-child relationships, but it also usually comes with guilt for me. “Call your mom, I wish I still could.” Yeah, me too, I want to say. I stare at my phone, my finger hovering over her name, and sigh. I let the screen go black instead. My birth mother is alive and well but I chose to end my...

Keep Reading

Setting Boundaries with Toxic Family Is Hard but Worth It

In: Motherhood
Family walking in water

Breaking generational chains is one of the most amazing, beautiful, and beneficial things I’ve done for my family. My children are happy and healthy and know they are loved unconditionally. I continue to heal my inner child and find my worth. I feel so much relief knowing my children won’t go through the trauma and pain my husband and I did.  But breaking those chains, establishing boundaries, going no contact with abusive family members, explaining to my children that they can’t see our relatives who they love so dearly because they were hurting us. That is hard. That is painful....

Keep Reading

If You Fear Becoming Your Mother, Remember the Cycle Ends With You

In: Motherhood
Woman hugging infant, color photo

How desperately I wish you could read this as you stand at the precipice of parenthood. I know how scared you are as you enter this next chapter of life. How you can’t shake that incessant voice insisting you are not prepared to be a parent. That nagging feeling that you are going to mess up this beautiful life that has been entrusted to you.  I know your biggest fear. The one you don’t dare tell anyone.  The fear that you will be like your mother. That you will follow in the only footsteps you know, ones that have led to...

Keep Reading