Why is Your Mom So Mean to You? Detailed Guide for Children


Relationships can often be complicated, especially when one’s family is involved. While a child’s relationship with his/her mother is uniquely special in its way, in some cases, due to multiple reasons, the relationship can turn sour. 

It’s understandable that you’re going through trying times, but the foremost thing that you need to remember is that you are NOT alone. In fact, recent research indicates that as parents and children age and children enter teenagehood and adulthood, their bond with their children weakens. 

But the bigger question is, why does the bond between the parent and child weaken with time? The answer to this question is neither simple nor straightforward, rather it’s multifaceted and embodied in the society’s culture and social rules. So, let’s explore all the reasons. 

Why Do Mothers and Children Drift Apart?

There are several reasons for children and mothers losing their precious bond over time, so we’ll explore each reason in great detail.

An Adult daughter ignoring her old mother.

  1. As children age and explore new activities, they often don’t find the time to bond and interact with their parents as they did when they were young.

  2. Mothers often can be ‘too’ controlling of their children’s behavior. They most often make the mistake of assuming that the children whom they birthed are still toddlers. However, the reality is that their young ones are grown-ups with a mind and life of their own who need space-mental, emotional, and physical-to spend their lives as they desire.

  3. As children grow and form new relationships, they have a difficult time maintaining old ones, and often take their ‘old’ relations, especially those with their mothers for granted. In some instances, their partners and spouses make matters worse for them by discouraging them from forming healthy relations with their mothers. Boys particularly have a hard time striking a balance between old and new relationships.  

Without a doubt, a child shares a special, ‘natural’ bond with his or her mother, but in some cases, this bond becomes tainted with negative feelings or emotions that give rise to hostile and mean feelings between the mother and the child. 

Fixing The Mother-Child Relationship 

When such happens, it becomes hard for both the parties-the mother and the child- to think clearly and straight, but the key to mending wounded and broken relationships is by recognizing and acknowledging that a hostile and unhealthy relationship exists between the two of you and than working on ways to improve it. 

Why Is Your Mother Mean To You? Possible Causes

Before heading onto the possible solutions to the problem, it’s important that we explorer the root causes behind it.

Grown mean daughter argues with mother

  1. You are seeking independence at an early age: Most young adults, especially adolescents think that their mother is “mean” to them at some point in their lives, especially during teenagehood or early adulthood. This happens mostly due to a child’s struggle for being an independent human being while still living with their parents under their strict rule. In most cases, the mother only wants to keep her child safe as she is far wiser and experienced than her young child. In the midst of all this, the mother tries her best to keep her child safe while it bristles against the rules and the aftermath of the child’s actions.

  2. Your mother might be traumatized: In some cases, we can’t say for sure how many, but there is often another side to the story. As children, we often forget that our parents are humans too. Sometimes parents, especially mothers, have experienced mental and emotional trauma in their childhood or early adulthood and they often wrestle with dysfunction from their own formative years, or live under significant physical, emotional, or financial stress. When such happens, their responses or actions to your behavior and decisions often result in extreme anger or authoritarianism within the parent-child relationship they share with you thus making your interactions with them more challenging.

How To Deal With A ‘Mean’ Mother? The Solutions

If you find yourself in such a situation, the first lesson you must remember is to use your head and think logically. But, after all, we’re all human and you might struggle to seek independence from her.

You may feel frustrated or annoyed and these emotions are understandable, common, and most often valid.

Even though you may feel that your mother’s behavior is far too controlling, uncaring, or unnecessary, her intention is always good and far simpler than we imagine: she just wants to protect you from the cruel world. much simpler. So, when you find yourself in such a situation, how do you deal with it? 

Practical Ways to Deal With A Difficult Mother 

Well, you may find it helpful for starters to start by sitting down with your mother when things are calm and both of you can think clearly.

You should have a healthy and constructive conversation about your life and the fact that you are becoming an independent individual who is capable of making decisions.

Also, at this point, we’d advise that you do NOT have such conversations when you’re in the middle of a heated argument, it’ll only make things worse. 

There are a few other tips too, let’s talk about them, shall we?

Reflect on Your Behavior and Actions

When we’re angry or in the middle of an argument, we often make the mistake of over-emphasizing the other person’s behavior and not ours. When you’re cool, ALWAYS reflect on your words and actions, and think if they aren’t offensive and whether you’re not saying or doing anything wrong. 

This may be difficult, but introspection will do wonders for you. Also, when introspecting, think about whether you regularly disrespect your mother? Do you make choices that go against their personal values?

Do you talk back to them? Do you seek their advice and not follow it? We understand that you’re an adult and have the right to live your life as you desire, but you mustn’t forget that your mother is far more experienced than you are. 

Always Set Personal Boundaries. 

When two people live together, they’re bound to have arguments, and it is common to argue, but you shouldn’t let Everything become a bone of contention between your bond and relationship.

You must bear in mind that in many instances larger issues often prevent a relationship from being healthy. To avoid such situations and to preserve your mother’s sanity, you must set personal boundaries with your mother.

If you’re living with her, but soon, you’re old enough to move out, you may want to start working on a plan to get your own living space where you can be more independent. 

Sometimes as children, we often make the mistake of not thinking of our parents as humans with emotions and problems of their own. In doing so, we ignore the fact that they too can have problems of their own. 

Is Your Mother Having Problems Of Her Own?

Sometimes meanness and anger are the results of frustration and anger at a workplace, a personal relationship, or something else. After all, your mother is a human first and then a mother.

If you notice a sudden shift in her mood, it’s best if you talk to her and talk to her about what’s bothering her and what’s causing a sudden change in her behavior. 

Trust me, a long and healthy conversation goes a long way. Another way to help her distress is by helping her with chores or just taking away some of the responsibilities off her plate so that she too can relax and enjoy her life. 


Our moms gave birth to us and their prime focus (in most cases) is to protect and care for us. Sometimes, they go too far in their goal and come off as ‘too domineering’ and ‘too controlling’, which may lead to a strained relationship between you and her.

Mother and Daughter

So, the best way to avoid this situation is by having constructive and healthy conversations with her about your growing age, your right to lead an independent life, and the mere fact that you’re an adult who is capable of making decisions and has the right to do so.

However, the key takeaway here is that you must not lose your cool, even when she does. Always have these conversations with a clear mind.


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