How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dr. Steve Your Own Question

Dr. Steve
Dr. Steve, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 370
Experience:  19 years conducting therapy; book author; newspaper columnist; former co-host of radio show
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Dr. Steve is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

hi i am a 30 year old mom, and married to a man I truely love,

Resolved Question:

hi i am a 30 year old mom, and married to a man I truely love, but Iam not happy. I try to make everyone happy. I feel like my mother interfairs in my life too much and still tries to control me. So much soo that she acts like my children are hers. It is putting strain on my marriage because my husand and her do not like each other because of how she is. I feel like I'm caught in between my family and the man I love. I dont know what to do. How do I fix this?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Steve replied 4 years ago.

Greetings:

 

Great question, but I am sorry you find yourself in this awful situation. And actually, my answer may not be what you want to hear, but here goes anyway: When growing up with a mother like yours, a daughter learns early on to make mom happy "or else." I am guessing that mom wore away your self esteem long before you can even remember because that was a convenient way to control you. Over the years, this relationship generalized for you, such that you would now use that same coping mechanism (i.e., making other people happy to avoid some unpleasant something that you probably couldn't even identify, but felt nonetheless) with all relationships, from casual (friends/acquaintances) to intimate (husband). And while it makes you feel good to take care of others, it also wears you out and at times makes you angry.

 

And here's the deal: because mom may be very skilled at making things always seem to be your fault, she probably reinforces the notion that if you ever try to get strong or make steps to hold up better boundaries, a crisis will ensue and will get folded back onto you.

 

So back to your question: My advice would be to seek a talk therapist who can talk you through some of the boundaries that you do not feel strong enough to create or to reinforce, and then coach you on how to begin the process of setting and keeping to them. It will not be a quick fix, as you will wax and wane as to how able you feel to make the necessary changes, but the therapist will offer you support and encouragement, while all the time monitoring your stress and frustration level.

 

I do wish you well. Mother and daughters have a special bond, and when it goes awry, it takes a fair amount of effort and preserverence to change. If you are satisfied with the response, please hit "accept." That is the only way I can receive credit for my answers. Thanks-

Dr. Steve

Dr. Steve, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 370
Experience: 19 years conducting therapy; book author; newspaper columnist; former co-host of radio show
Dr. Steve and 4 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Because I am so angry inside about this, I find myself yelling and being mean to my oldest daughter over the littleset things. My concern is what harm am I potentially doing to her? And is it too late for me to change any potential emotional damage I've done to her? I do not want her to feel this way and treat her children one day like this.

 

thank you very much for your advise.

Expert:  Dr. Steve replied 4 years ago.

Hello again:

 

It is true that having an angry parent can erode the self esteem of daughters - but here is the good news; Kids are amazingly resilient and thirsty for your affection and affirmation. If you can take steps to calm yourself down and make changes in your life to lower the rage you are carrying inside, you can absolutely repair the relationship with your girl and help her to not make the same mis-steps in her life that you may have taken in yours. and think about this: You are recreating your same childhood in her (i.e., if she has an angry mom a lot, she will try to make you happy all the time)... so help yourself and help your daughter!

 

Best regards, XXXXX XXXXX wishes:

Dr. Steve

Dr. Steve, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 370
Experience: 19 years conducting therapy; book author; newspaper columnist; former co-host of radio show
Dr. Steve and 4 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
< Last | Next >
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
  • I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information and confirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for the examination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you as well! Claudia Albuquerque, NM
  • Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion. Kevin Beaverton, OR
  • Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor's appointment next week.
    I feel better already! Thank you.
    Elanor Tracy, CA
  • Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem. Julie Lockesburg, AR
  • You have been more help than you know. I seriously don't know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions. John and Stefanie Tucson, AZ
  • I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!! Janet V Phoenix, AZ
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/Dr.Keane/2013-8-20_204325_drkeane.64x64.jpg Dr. Keane's Avatar

    Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/resolutions66/2011-1-17_05728_IMG8202smilingeditedforJustAnswer.64x64.jpg Elliott, LPCC, NCC's Avatar

    Elliott, LPCC, NCC

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    5024
    35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/formybunch/2010-12-06_191055_img_0975.jpg Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC's Avatar

    Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    3733
    Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/DrAkiraOlsen/2012-2-20_746_AkiraADpicmain.64x64.jpg Dr. Olsen's Avatar

    Dr. Olsen

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2336
    PsyD Psychologist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/norriem/2009-5-27_134249_nm.jpg Norman M.'s Avatar

    Norman M.

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2193
    UK trained in hypnotherapy, counselling and psychotherapy and have been in private practice. ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), UKCP Registered and ECP.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PsychologyProf/2010-07-15_171248_logos060400409.jpg Dr. Michael's Avatar

    Dr. Michael

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2177
    Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KURTEMMERLING/2010-07-23_215531_just_ask_picture1.jpg Steven Olsen's Avatar

    Steven Olsen

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1727
    More than twenty years of expertise in counseling, psychological diagnosis and education