My mother refused to use my correct name, my chosen name, yet again!
I had just received another letter from my mom addressed to me using my husband’s last name, which I had purposely chosen not to take.
What was she doing? Had I not made it clear that after I married I would be keeping my maiden name? Was it just her being old-fashioned? Why was she consistently referring to me in writing and in person as Yvette (husband’s last name) versus Yvette McIntire as I wanted to be called?
I was confused.
My relationship with my mom had always been continuous so I wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt, but this was getting annoying. I was tired of feeling like my choice was being disrespected so I decided to confront her on it.
This conversation did not go as I expected…
I thought I’d mention the oversight to her like, “Oh, mom, BTW, I didn’t take husband’s last name. I am still going by my maiden name.”
To which she would respond, “Oh, darling, my bad, I’ll be sure to address you correctly next time” and that would be that.
I was not prepared for what happened…
I was shocked…
Not only did she know exactly what my choice was, she was deliberately trying to send me a message, via calling me by my husband’s name, that she did not approve.
She proceeded to lay into me with statements like “what kind of wife doesn’t take her husband’s last name.” “Why are you being so disrespectful to your husband?” “How do you expect him to love you if you won’t even use his name?”
I felt betrayed,
For years I’d tried to get close to my mother. I longed for that storybook mother-daughter relationship everyone around me seemed to have. You know, the “my mom is my best friend” type relationship. But I just never felt like that was remotely possible.
I wanted to feel supported and loved by her, not judged and criticized. And I wanted all this without having to change myself to please her or sacrificing what was important to me.
I wanted to improve my relationship with my mother, but I thought she was the one who needed to change. It was clear, that wasn’t soon to happen.
My mother felt righteous in her position and did not want to hear anything I had to say about my decision as a grown a** (short for autonomous) 😉 woman about what name I wanted to use.
After I wiped my tears, blew my nose, and regained my composure,
I got to work to learn everything I could about how to better manage my relationship with my mother so I would never have to feel this kind of hurt ever again.
If you have ever been hurt by or frustrated with your mom or by someone close to you, whether it’s one of your parents, a co-worker, your boss, a sibling, a friend, your teenager, your lover or your spouse, I can help you.
Using the strategies I learned from my research, and frankly trial and error, to develop a loving, close relationship with my mom, I’ll guide you to creating the relationship you want. In fact, I can help you improve any relationship with anyone or anything–your body, your career, your finances, really anything.
These are all just relationships between you and that thing, no different from your relationship with a person. The skills that apply to having an improved relationship with a person equally apply to your relationship to anything in your life.
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