A Mothers Loss of Identity
I've noticed lately the amount of women I've been working with who are terribly angry with their partners and they don't know why, they are just consumed by this anger and it's eating them up while destroying their relationships. So I've been reflecting on what I've been hearing and come to the conclusion that at a very subconscious level women blame the husbands for not having a life outside the family, they're jealous that their partners know who they are and are happy with themselves.
This all stems from when women first become pregnant. Once that bump is visible we start to loose ourselves, people will talk to our bump, touch it without permission or asking, we start to slip away and our identity starts to fade and disappear. Then the bump becomes a baby and we loose a bit more, we are now Brooks mum and Peters wife / partner, no longer an individual in our own right, we come an attachment or appendage of the family, almost a servant to their needs. People will identify us by what we do and who's mum we are, we disappearing a little bit more and becoming invisible.
As the family grows and they become more independent, our husbands / partners continue to be who they always were and we have continued to become more and more invisible, never realising we had a part in that disappearance, that invisibleness.
Then the kids are all doing their own thing, we are no longer needed anywhere near as much as we were and we start looking at ourselves and not recognising that we have become. We're just a shadow of the person we used to be, if we recognise ourselves at all! Then we start looking for someone to blame, we see our partners happily going along, and resentment can set in. We start to get bitter and twisted that they've got out of it scott free and we are the ones that no longer have any identity or knowledge who we are or how to start to find ourselves again.
This is when I usually see people, when they're angry and bitter and taking it out on everyone around them. It's not pretty, I can tell you, for anyone. The women are angry at their partners and angry at themselves for being angry at them and letting it get this bad in the first place and the cycle continues. It's really sad.
However not all is lost, it's the beginning of the start of the rest of our lives and it's never to late. It's where we can start to discover who we have become, instead of trying to find the person we were, that person is gone, we have to start to grow a new 'us', from the inside out.
It's about finding out what lights us up from the inside, what floats our boat. That said, not a lot of women are ready to find a new 'them', they're afraid that there isn't anyone worthwhile to find and that can be the first hurdle to jump, accepting who we are now without guilt, judgment or criticism is the first step and the foundation of becoming happy with who we are and where we are going. This process can take time and is very much worth the effort because if we don't discover our new 'us' we will never find that happiness we so desperately want.
To talk directly with Toni you can find her at Toni Langford Counselling