7 Ways People Try to Deny Their Mother Wound

Updated: Nov 4, 2021

No one wants to have the mother wound.

Nothing about it is fun, let alone glamorous.

Them: “PeOpLe JuSt CrY mOmMy PrObLeMs FoR aTtEnTiOn!”

My blunt response: Anyone claiming mother wound survivors are “Just doing it for attention!” can go ahead and sit right down.

My Miss Manners response: Those who believe mother wound survivors are “Just doing it for attention!” are invited to continue reading this blog post for educational and compassion purposes.

So What Gives?

Why do some folks say mother wound survivors are looking for attention when they own their pain and trauma from their mothers?

Well, as it turns out, it’s nothing new.

It’s that same tired old attempt to silence other people from talking about their pain and trauma that’s been going on for thousands of years now because a few would rather stick their heads in the sand than face reality with the rest of us.

Same game. Different day.

The reality, whether everyone wants to acknowledge it or not, is that pain and trauma happen, and sometimes pain and trauma happen because mothers are being controlling, mean, abusive, neglectful, etc. towards their very own children.

There’s absolutely nothing pretty about this fact.

And making matters worse, the roots of the problem run both deep and wide in families (i.e. the mother wound is intergenerational) and in our broader communities (i.e. the mother wound is culturally dynamic).

What we can know for sure is that the problem won’t be fixed by shaming mother wound survivors into silence.

We can also know for sure that there are quite literally millions of better, more enjoyable ways to spend one’s time and energy, let alone get some attention, than adding oneself to the Mommy Issues Club.

Facts: No one is claiming the mother wound for attention. No one. Zero.

Even if we had sweet t-shirts and awesome mugs, who would want to wear them and flash them around???

I mean I proudly would, but that’s me!

I digress.

The process of admitting and coming to terms with one’s own mother wound is intensely painful.

I cannot stress this enough.

As a Mother Wound Aware specialist who sits in counseling sessions each and every day with people who have the mother wound, please believe me when I tell you no one is having a blast.

In fact the vast majority of mother wound survivors come to see me having internalized their mother wound as an indication of personal shortcoming and even failure.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that many mother wound survivors spend years and sometimes even decades unconsciously denying their own mother wound.

The message that anyone saying anything less than sappy about their relationship with their mom and how she mothered them is “just looking for attention” is loud and clear.

And that’s not even getting into the messaging that says they are inherently bad people who are overly sensitive and lack gratitude.

But the mother wound is not their fault, and the mother wound is not something they need to feel ashamed of!

Experiencing the mother wound is hard enough.

Talking openly about and seeking help for the pain and trauma someone has experienced with their mom shouldn’t be looked down upon and stigmatized.

It should be welcomed and normalized.

Collectively we need to do better.

We don’t look down on people who acknowledge the cut on their finger and go in to the ER for stitches.

We need to give mother wound survivors the exact same respect we give to anyone else who has experienced pain or trauma.

As Brené Brown says, we don't need to have the same experience as someone else to empathize with them about what they are going through.

So just like we can offer empathy to someone who needed stitches for a cut finger even when we have never needed stitches for a cut finger, we can also offer empathy to someone who has the mother wound even if we cannot personally relate to the specifics of their lived experience.