The mother is the first person and the first environment for a child starting from the womb. And what if this very first person that the child comes in contact with is unwelcoming, unloving and cold? Much has been written and discussed daughters, but when it comes to sons, it is usually the father-son angle that is explored. Sons are always considered mama’s boys and the bond between the two is always supposed to be strong and full of love. But this isn’t the case always. But, some relationships aren’t as great and divine as they are meant to be. A mother and son toxic relationship can have lifelong damage.
If the relationship between the mother and son is toxic, it leads to lifelong psychological and emotional damage. It is not necessary that a mother’s love is always unconditional. And as men are supposed to be strong, their ‘supposed masculinity’ serves as a block for them to evidently show any emotions. Most of the time men never discuss relationship problems openly and if it is about their mothers they usually refrain from talking about it.
The negative and toxic relationship and the absence of any vent for it can cause lifelong damage.
Here are some effects we observed after witnessing one such mother and son toxic relationship:
1. Strong emotional restraint
Socially and culturally boys are supposed to control their emotions. This curbing of emotions such as grief, pain, and failure is taught to them early on in life by their moms. They are not allowed expression of such feelings and they grow up with the thought, this isn’t manly. On the other hand, they are allowed to express emotions of anger as it is associated with the supposed masculinity. So boys grow up with strong emotional restraint that at times leads to psychological disorders. Though times have changed and one does come across male characters in movies expressing such emotions openly, yet it is a long way home.
2. Failure in relationships
A mother is the first woman in a man’s life. He grows up observing her, imbibing from her and learning from her. If he has grown up under a controlling mother where his emotional needs have always been suppressed. In this process, he might be wary of the same in his relationship with other women later in life. If the mother has been an authoritative one, he might end up dominating and seeking authority over the woman in his life.
When a male child doesn’t get enough validation of his emotions in his growing up years, he can turn aggressive and show hostile behavior quite often. This becomes the only outlet for him to vent his emotions. He might over-exaggerate to situations. Losing control and showing anger is a common trait amongst such men. They are not able to handle emotions as efficiently as women who might have grown under similar conditions.
4. Living in self-denial
Men who have had mothers with no emotional connect often live under self-denial. When they see other moms petting their children, they find such emotions and actions as over-exaggerated. They are unable to acknowledge loving mothers and find any show of emotions as trivial, fake and over-the-top.
As men are considered stronger than their female counterparts in terms of emotional response (though in reality could be the opposite), they generally do not seek help in such cases. The repressed emotions and the problems arising out of them stay inside them leading to many emotional and physical problems as well. So to all the mothers out there, the ones who love and dote on their sons and the ones who are somewhere detached, you might be leaving behind lifelong mental bruises on your little one’s heart and mind. Watch out.
by Tasneem Dhinojwala