Family, Self

6 Reasons Why Mothers And Daughters Fight So Often

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The mother-daughter relationship is a complicated one. We feel like were at each other’s throats.

As daughters it’s hard to let our mothers give us advice, and our mothers we feel like they want to live our lives for us, make our mistakes, feel our pain for us. It’s a constant competition, and many times, there's constant tension. 

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What makes a mother and daughter relationship so complicated? Well, we don’t start out this way — as little , we look to our mothers as our futures. We think of our moms as princesses and queens. We follow them around trying to walk like them and say the things they say. We want to wear our hair like them, and dress like them.

But at some point, things shift. At some point our mothers become stressful to us. We no longer welcome their advice. Their wisdom turns becomes inapplicable. 

As daughters, to our mothers we become inaccessible. We shut down. They want to be a part of our lives, but they lose their way in. The conflict between mother and daughter often starts with hormones during puberty, but that relationship tension never really ends. But why?

Why can’t we learn to understand where our mothers are coming from when they give us unsolicited advice? Why can’t mothers take a step back and see how they are making their daughters feel. 

Take a look at the reasons mothers and daughters often fight below to better understand what causes a rift in the relationship, and so you can recognize the signs and work to make your own relationship with your mother better than ever.

1. Things feel different in your relationship with each other than they were before.

It’s something that we don’t think about all of the time. Moms have lived a life completely different than the one we daughters are living. It’s the same idea as alimony. You can survive on 40,000 dollars a year, but when you were married, you were millionaires. It is not the life to which we are accustomed. Same with mothers and daughters.

Mothers want us to live they way they lived when they were growing up, but the times have changed — the same rules don’t apply now.

Imagine being Cinderella’s daughter. Imagine not wanting to clean your room in THAT household. Imagine her saying, “When I was your age, I had to clean the whole house, cook for everyone, and clean the chimneys!” Or if you bring home a boyfriend she doesn’t like, “When I first met your father, he searched the entire kingdom for me trying my shoe on every other girl until he found me.” It is impossible to live up to these standards.

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2. Daughters don't understand why moms are so "controlling". 

Keeping on theme with our princesses, because we are princesses, imagine being Belle’s daughter. It is unlikely that she is going to tell you that she had an ex-boyfriend that wanted to kill her father, but instead took her captive for years until she finally fell in love with him. She probably also won’t tell you that she had an abusive ex-boyfriend that followed her to her new boyfriends house and fell off of your house to his death.

She has been through things you don’t even think about. Things that really affect her, and the way she approaches her life, and her choices as a mother.

So, when you haven’t spoken to her in a week, and she calls you seven times, its not because she wants to be controlling. She’s probably just checking to see if youre locked in a castle somewhere talking to teapots and clocks.

3. Moms sacrifice a lot to give their daughters the best life possible.

We hear it all of the time. Motherhood is a sacrifice. She is sacrificing things in her own life to raise you. Maybe its her career, maybe its her figure, maybe its her independence. But she has given things up for you.

There are things she wanted to be in her life. Maybe she wanted to be an actress, or maybe a high powered executive. And even if she is these things, maybe she wants to be kinder, more understanding. Maybe she wants to be more loving. More open. More daring. More careful. You get to do the things she couldn’t, or be the person she can’t. She wants you to have the best life you possibly can.

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4. There could be jealousy involved.

Jealousy between mothers and daughters can go both ways. Sometimes we may look at our mothers and think, when she was my age, she was successful at work, she was married to someone who loved her, and she knew exactly what she wanted in her life. I wish I could live  up to the example she has set.

She may look you and think, look at my daughter, so gorgeous, so headstrong, she lives her life freely and takes chances. I miss the time when I was as youthful as she is.

Unrecognized jealousy can be a huge cause of tension. We should try and recognize that it is jealousy we are feeling and try to turn it into admiration. 

5. Mothers and daughters both feel the pressure.

Mother’s feel a great deal of pressure to be the perfect example for their daughters. They need to show them how to work hard, but also how to relax. They need to show us how to cook and clean, while also teaching us that its not our responsibility to do so, just because were women. They want to teach us how to stay home and raise a family, while also teaching us to go to work and have a career. How to be demure and polite, and still let loose with their friends.

For daughters there is a lot of pressure to live up to our mother’s example. No matter how much we fight, or get mad at them, we idolize our mothers. We want to be who they want us to be. But we struggle because we are also our own people.

We want them to be proud of us, but sometimes for that to happen we have to make sacrifices. Sacrifices we aren’t always willing to make.

6. Daughters aren't receptive to unsolicited advice.

From the time we are 10 years old until the day we die, we hate unsolicited advice from our mothers. And our mothers love to give it. For them, its protective, they want us to do the right thing, to be the best we can be, so they give tell us the right things to do from their perspective.

As we get older, it is also a way for them to be part of our lives. They want to be needed. To fill that same role of guidance they played when were 9 years old.

As daughters, it feels like disapproval. It feels like distrust. When were 16 years old and they are helping us through a fight with a friend, or a problem at school, it feels like they don’t trust us to do the right thing. In our 20’s and 30’s when they tell us how to handle a work problem or a relationship problem, it feels like disapproval. They don’t like the way we do things, a condemnation on our past choices. 

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We all love our mothers. They are the women we emulate. Our role models. They gave us our hearts where we forever hold them inside. They are our first best friends. Our mothers love us always. They guide us and teach us. They tear off pieces of their hearts to give to us, so we can feel their love. We are their last best friends. 

Mother and daughter relationships can be tense — we’re always going to bicker and fight, we may march to the beat of different drummers, but we will always walk to the beat of the same heart.

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Kaitlin Kaiser is a writer who covers astrology, pop culture and relationship topics.