Raising a Mama's Boy Without "Mommy Issues"
Is it possible for a mother to raise a boy with such closeness without subjecting him to a lifetime of therapy to deal with his "mommy issues?" As a mom who has her own set of mommy issues, and have been linked to many a men with same said issues, lately I've been starting to wonder if my boy is destined as well.
Though I'm no Freud, I have certainly spent enough time in therapy land and like I said, in relationships where mommy is ever present, to know what's sort of at the core of mommy issues:
Boys are afraid we will cut off their penis.
Wait, no. that's not it. Or, maybe it is.
Also, guilt. Moms are good at making everyone, especially men, feel guilty.
So, Guilt + Fear of losing genitalia = Issues.
This is my theory. Well, the basic version at least.
Then of course there's the added layer of every day parenting-- the things you say and do that you don't even know will cause "mommy issues" and a lifetime of horrible relationships and ultimately resentment towards you.
Take this conversation with my son for example:
Me: So.... tell me about your afternoon. How was it? What did you do?
Him: Mommy, we already told you.
Me: Can you tell me again?
Him: Why do you always check on me while I'm with Tricia (his nanny)? Just let us hang out. We're fine. Geeeeee.
Me: Oh, my darling.... I will check on you for the rest of your life. In 30 years from now, I'll check on you.
Me: Yep... when you're married, with children, I'll check on you. I'll ask you about your day then too.
Him: But, why???
Me: Because I'm your mom. And I'm Jewish. And we want to know what you ate, where you ate, who you ate with, how you feel, how you felt, how you think you'll feel and if you're still hungry.
Him: Are you just joking?
Me: Oh, no. I'm pretty serious.
Or this conversation AFTER I got back from vacation:
Him: Mommy, did you miss me while you were away?
Me: Yes!!! So much!! Did you miss me?
Him: Actually, um. I miss my daddy right now.
Me: But did you miss ME... while I was away.
Me: Sweetheart, did you miss. ME. While. I. Was. Away.
Him: (Yawning) Uh huh.
**Note: I WANTED to tell him that my feelings were hurt and that he has to miss me. Always. Forever. BUT I glanced at the future (him sitting across from a very expensive shrink) and thought otherwise.... Good Mommy Point for Jennifer Brandt!
The point is, right now, as my son turns another corner developmentally, and I move into a different point in my life (literally, moving homes and ultimately blending our family with another... post to come!), I'm very sensitive to the things that could lead to my son blaming all his issues on me. Which let's face it, is bound to happen. Whether I guilt him in to missing me or not. Or whether I call him 900 times a day or not.
Somehow, some way, organic foods and no sugar before bed and all, I will have screwed up.... Slightly. Not majorly. Just slightly. (Future daughter in law, just politely smile and refrain from agreeing now. Oh, and have my son call me back. Thanks).