Intergenerational Trauma

Were you raised by a mother who had unresolved personal or intergenerational trauma? Has this affected you and your relationships?

Many of us have been raised by mothers who carried intergenerational and personal trauma, and this deeply affected their capacity to parent us as children. It is difficult to be connected to your children if you did not experience this for yourself growing up.

Here are some of the signs and behaviors that you may have experienced growing up with your mother. The signs are as follows:

  • Her relationship with her family was or still is strained, dysfunctional, lacking in boundaries. She was, or still is controlled by what they think, or constantly distressed when interacting with them.
  • She struggled to show physical affection and was secretive about her life and experiences.
  • She was highly critical of you. Things like the way you look, choices you make and friends you choose
  • She was more concerned about appearances rather than how you felt.
  • She was overbearing and overprotective.
  • She reacted strongly to any sign of independence from you.
  • She yells a lot and appears to be stressed most of the time.
  • As a child you felt like you were walking on eggshells around her and had to hide parts of yourself for fear of disapproval.
  • You found yourself fearing her reactions and emotions to situations or people.
  • You were not permitted to share feelings or show certain emotions without repercussion.
  • You experienced her expressing her emotions in an erratic and unpredictable way, this had a destabilising effect on you.

 If any of them sound familiar, or you recognize the traits, perhaps it’s time to speak to a therapist or counsellor about your childhood to gain the skills needed to shift from generational trauma to functional, loving, and connected parenting. The way we were parented by our parents sets up how we grow into adults and parent our own children. It is within your power to change intergenerational trauma.

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