Mother's Day is fast approaching and it got me thinking about the ways in which our mothers affect our dating patterns. Whether we recognize it or not, your mom has a say in who you become and even who you date. As much as you'd like to think that you're completely separate from her and aren't influenced by what she thinks of you, the fact is you're influenced by mom more than you'd like to believe.
Here's just a sampling of the ways she's managed to wrangle herself into your dating life:
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1. It started when you were a baby. Researchers have found that the ability to love, trust and work through arguments is developed during infancy and can directly affect behavior in future relationships. If your mother was distant or emotionally cold to you when you were a baby, you may find it very difficult to allow yourself to love and be loved later in life. While these tendencies were developed before you were forming memories or even able to speak, that doesn't mean they can't be overcome but it does mean you may have some additional hurdles.
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2. She set the example. We're naturally programmed to view the type of relationship that our parents had as the norm, so if your parents had a loving, trusting, long-lasting relationship, then you're in luck. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. With roughly half of marriages ending in divorce, many more on the brink and others that are just downright dysfunctional, the majority of us are following examples that are less than stellar. Studies have shown that children from divorced families are much more likely to have marriages that end in divorce.
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3. She taught you how women are to be treated. We all grow up subconsciously wanting to be just like mom, so if she let herself be treated poorly, walked on, cheated on or generally disrespected, you're likely to unknowingly be looking for a partner who will treat you the same. Alternately, if she was overly domineering and constantly berating your father or other male figures in your life, you may find yourself inadvertently drawn to the meek, sheepish guy that you can treat the same way. Keep reading...
More Mother's Day advice from YourTango: