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Toxic mother: Why is it sometimes necessary to cut ties?



“Allowing yourself to be the main subject of your own thoughts and actions allows you to evolve,” explains Anne Laure Buffet, therapist and author of the book. Mothers who hurt (Eyrolles editions) ). To be able to say to yourself: “I want, I wish, I decide, I like…”, is to flourish in your adult life. However, some mothers prevent this crucial step in the development of her son, who, despite the passing of the years, is unable to repress this intrusive question: “What will my mother think of this?”

When the mother-child relationship creates too much hassle for the child who has become an adult and prevents him from living his life, severing the ties is sometimes the only solution.

The toxicity of the mother as the origin of this decision

When an adult decides to cut ties with his mother, it is often because the foundations of the mother-child relationship are lacking. This weakness is sometimes due to the mother’s toxic behavior towards her child. What characterizes a A toxic mother, explains Anne Laure Buffet, is “her attitude, her behaviour, her personality and the way she interacts with her child”. preventing him from being autonomous and empowered.”

  • If the adult grew up with a possessive, controlling and omnipresent mother:

As a child he was not considered as an individual in his own right but for what he brings or should bring to the mother. His judgment of him continues when the child becomes an adult. The mother presents herself as “possessor of knowledge and refuses any questioning.” For example, she forbids any secret garden because everything that does not correspond to the given frame is judged as missing. This toxic behavior makes the person “unable to establish an affective and loving relationship with anyone else in his adult life, since he remains attached to his mother as if her life depended on it.” In this situation, the presence of the mother ends up becoming oppressive, which can push the adult, wanting to free himself and live his own life, to disassociate himself.

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The omnipresence of the mother can also become an intrusive behavior that she justifies by an “overflow of affection”, as indicated by Brigitte Allain-Dupré, psychoanalyst and author of the book. Healing of his mother (Eyrolles editions). For example, the mother intervenes in the professional, private, friendly, romantic, and sometimes intimate life of her son.

  • If the adult grew up with an abusive mother

“Until I was 40 years old, I was afraid of my mother, her judgment, her words and her mood swings. It was both bipolar and perversely narcissistic for me,” says 52-year-old Nathalie. His mother’s behavior pushed him to leave the family nest at the age of 20 and completely break the paternal bond more than twenty years later, noticing despite the years and the distance that his mother had not changed. She recalls, “After another event where my mother was hateful towards me on social media, I decided to stop everything. She tried to communicate with me twice, playing on my heartstrings, but when I didn’t respond, her true face appeared.

“This maternal toxicity, notes Anne-Laure Buffet, can result in a desire to harm or harm through physical and/or psychological abuse.” When this violence is expressed physically, it can take the form of slapping, whipping, hitting (physical violence against children is prohibited and sanctioned with the law since July 10, 2019). When it is psychological and affective, violence implies permanent criticism, humiliation, degrading comments or even insults. This behavior can be explained by the envious and jealous character of the mother. A woman is more likely to look down on her child, especially if she is a girl, if she envies her physical assets or her success.

  • If the adult grew up with a deficient mother:
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In such a situation, the child often grows “too fast” and does not know a period of openness and peace because he is very young in charge of his brothers or sisters, or assuming the role of messenger between parents. It also happens that he must receive confidences from his mother, on the affective, romantic and sometimes sexual level. The mother-child relationship is reversed, Brigitte Allain-Dupré explains: “The mother turns the child into her confidant, on whom she discharges her parental responsibilities and her duties. She cannot play the role of mother because she is raising her own child.”

  • If the adult grew up with a cold mother:

When the mother is not emotionally present enough and is always cold with her son, the latter is likely to suffer from emotional deprivation and develop insecurities such as fear of abandonment.

This toxic behavior may be due to “a lack of ‘positive maternal madness’ at the time of the child’s birth,” says Brigitte Allain-Dupré, who refers by this to a mother’s awe of her baby and her devotion to curing and curing him. . she gets it.

At the birth of their child, some women do not feel these emotions and find it difficult to bond. The psychoanalyst recalls the story of a patient: “She told me that as soon as her daughter came out of her womb, she knew that he was not going to get along with her because the little girl did not have the same eyes as her. other daughters. This woman was going through a difficult time professionally and she wanted a child to make up for her difficulties at work. After this false start, she struggled to breastfeed and developed a toxic relationship with her daughter.

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When do you realize that your mother is toxic and that you have to leave?

Deciding to cut ties with your mother takes time and there is no sudden click. Consciousness begins in a subtle way. “As children, we are equipped to receive kindness and tenderness, so we don’t really realize that our mother is toxic,” says psychoanalyst Brigitte Allain-Dupré. However, even as a child, you can feel a certain discomfort in the relationship you have with your mother and evoke it by rebelling.

Faced with a child who rebels, the mother can understand that this behavior is actually a search for her affection. If the mother cannot read her child’s anguish, she becomes increasingly harsh and toxic.

Adolescence is a strong period during which the child can feel discomfort in the relationship with his mother The psychoanalyst points out: “The adolescent feels it when he has problems getting home, when he prefers the family of his friends or that he shuts himself in a romantic relationship”. relationship to create a parenthesis that feels good.

But it also happens that a person opens his eyes to the relationship with his mother much later in life. However, it is usually in adulthood that emotional separation occurs. According to Brigitte Allain-Dupré, “there is an instinctive dimension to the feeling of discomfort, then one day an event occurs and this triggers anguish, sadness or anger. The best thing is to listen to that voice that says ‘save your skin’ and leave”.

References :

Anne Laure Buffet, therapist and author of the book Mothers who hurt (Eyrolles editions)

Brigitte Allain-Dupré, psychoanalyst and author of the book Healing of his mother (Eyrolles editions)


With your mother, are you too fusional?

With your mother, did you find the right distance? To find out where your relationship is, mark, among the following statements, mark the ones that best correspond to you.

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Family / Couple

The 4 favorite methods of women to achieve clitoral orgasm



Despite scientific advances, female pleasure is still synonymous with mystery. Many studies have investigated the clitoris and its secrets, but never has the word been so free on the subject. It is in this continuity that American researchers compiled the responses of a panel of 3,017 women between the ages of 18 and 93 to make their way the secrets of sexual pleasure and clitoral orgasm. Published in April 2021, this study highlights 4 techniques women use to make vaginal penetration more pleasurable: angling, rocking, shallow penetration, and pairing.

Shallowing: multiply the pleasure by a superficial touch

84% of women resort to superficiality to, once again, increase pleasure during vaginal penetration. Behind this name, which translates into French as “superficial”, hides a pretty shallow touch, penetrating right at the entrance of the vagina. It can be done with the tip of the finger, a toy, the tip of the penis, the tongue, or the lips.

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Family / Couple

Breath play or erotic suffocation, a dangerous sexual practice



It is sexual behavior that is controversial. the breathing game which literally means “breath play”, is a form of erotic asphyxiation practiced during sexual intercourse. But its dangerousness is often overlooked.

What is the breathing game?

ends sexual arousal”, defines the English version of Wikipedia. In practice, “erotic asphyxia” consists ofchoking your partner in the middle of a sexual act. However, playing with your breath can be very dangerous, even deadly. “May result in accidental death by suffocation,” the definition says.

However, despite the risk of injury or fainting, this practice has many adherents. A study conducted in 2021 among 4,000 American students indicates that 26.5% of those surveyed had drowned during their last sexual encounter. Another study carried out the same year on other students reveals more worrying figures: 58% of them have already been suffocated by a partner.

L’suffocation erotic it is also very popular in BSDM circles. A french website dedicated to this type of sexual practices, explains that this restriction of breathing is “practiced in different ways: hanging, suffocation, placing the head in a plastic bag or strangulation,” reports an article in female earth.

A sexual practice that can be deadly

Very risky, the breathing game was popularized by the porn industry, making it an act in its own right, especially in sexual relations marked by domination. But in reality, the consequences of this sexual practice can be fatal. Too much pressure on the larynx can cause death.

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Although there are no official figures on the number of deaths caused by this practice, Grace Millane, a 22-year-old woman, died from it in 2018. Police found traces of strangulation that could correspond to a “four to five minute” suffocation. His partner, Jesse Kempton, was convicted of femicide and sentenced to life in prison. The defense had confided “that the young woman had accidentally died at the end of a sexual game that had gone wrong, a version that had been categorically rejected by the jury,” he recalls. paris party.

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Family / Couple

Couple: what your position on the sofa says about your relationship



the posture adopted by couples when they sit on a sofait’s a window into your relationship status. This is the conclusion of a study conducted by Georgina Barnett, a British psychologist, on 2,000 cohabiting couples. “Tell me how you’re sitting, I’ll tell you if everything is fine in your relationship,” says the specialist in an interview with Stylish Maternity.

Sitting next to each other: a sign of imbalance?

While most couples tend to sit on the couch together, there are some pretty subtle signs that it can be signs of relationship problems. When the partners occupy only one corner of the bench and are too close together, this is synonymous with imbalance in your relationship. “The comfortable person in the corner takes up the space, is confident, and has power in the relationship. The other, on the other hand, seems less confident. He is looking for contact and reassurance, ”explains Georgina Barnett.

However, there is a nuance when they sit more in the center of the sofa, maintaining physical contact, such as a hand on the thigh or another. “Couples established in this way have trust your relationship and therefore can afford personal space. It is a mixture of intimacy and freedom”, analyzes the psychologist. But although in love, the latter no longer experience the passion of the first days, according to the expert.

When the position on the sofa heralds a crisis

According to the psychologist, time is serious in the event that the two partners are sitting at two different ends. “It’s even worse if her legs are crossed in opposite directions,” she says. This posture is generally a sign of a Tension in the couple. It can also be a sign that something was left unsaid or resentment, according to Georgina Barnett.

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And contrary to what one might think, if the partners are based on different bases, distanced from each other, it does not necessarily mean that they are in crisis. can only be couples comfortable enough with each other to have their own space. Although this study is based on a fairly large sample, its conclusions must be taken with caution.

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