Do Mothers Really Know Their Children Best – Always?

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I overjeard something earlier this afternoon whilst l was in my loungeroom sorting through ‘vegetable seeds’ and that was a mother outside my window talking to her children. She said ” I am your mother and l will always know you and l know best!”

This reminds me when my own mother decides to use the phrase ‘”I carried you for 9 months l know you above all others!” Alongside the other phrase she uses …. ” I am your mother l know what’s best!”

To hear this from my mother at my age, which is now nearly 58 l find these phrases somewhat comical and pretty far fetched!

I know my mother probably more than she knows me – l remember my mother from old as well when she was younger, and l know her from today/now but admittedly l don’t know all of her today …. but from our conversations and the way she continually brings up the past, l know her pretty well really – because some things with her never change … for starters she doesn’t seem to move on and is even now an extremely bitter woman towards a man who will have been dead three years this October … but like so many – at times she also suffers terribly from selective memory!

She has become accustomed to lying to me quite a bit over the years and that is no different to when we were both younger and living under the same roof and l was truly her son growing up in the same house as her. She lies mostly about contact with my sister … don’t get me wrong, l am not bothered if she speaks to my sister, they are mother and daughter … but l don’t know who it is or which one insists that l am not to know they speak to each other. But this just reeks of the same behaviour between my father and my sister – as in all very clandestine.

My mother and l are not that close, we are, but we aren’t. The last time l saw my mother [pandemic aside] was twice in 2018, thrice in 2017, twice in 2016 and once in 2015. Previous to that between the years of 2009 – 2015 l saw her once, then between the years of 2000 – 2008 l saw her three times. So since the year 2000 to now 2021 l have seen her 12 times in 21 years. The lack of contact doesn’t really bother me and despite her rants and moans at times, l am not totally sure it bothers her that much either.

We keep in contact via telephone and in those 21 years l have probably called her on average once a week.

My mother doesn”t know me – the man of today – inside out like she boasts, because l change every year, l evolve and l move on – and l don’t tell her everything about me or my life – however she insists she does and yet when tested many a time she says she doesn’t know x, y and z. She has been that way especially since l told her of my official Asperger’s diagnosis in 2008 which she still insists of today it is NOT her son that has it, but that bastard of the man she was married to who never had an official diagnosis and always suspected his son was mentally ill and not simply autistic.

You see, l think mothers know their children when they are young and probably still know them to a certain degree if the contact held is always present ………. but l do not think ‘mothers know best’ when they have very little physical contact with their children.

So, to the ‘mothers, grandmothers, daughters who are now mothers and so on and on and on’ – what do you think?

Do Mothers Really Know Their Children Best – Always?

Let me know below. Cheers.

28 thoughts on “Do Mothers Really Know Their Children Best – Always?

  1. That really depends on the mother, the children, and the type of relationship they have. My relationship with my mother is similar to yours. She doesn’t know me at all. Never really did TBH. She never really took the time to get to know me.

    I do know my daughters, and Ben. Sometimes better than they know themselves, but I wouldn’t say I know what’s best. No one can decide what’s best for another person.

    My daughters are my friends now that they’re adults. We’re still Mother/daughters, but our relationship is more as adults, rather than parent to child, if that makes sense.

    Giving birth to someone doesn’t give someone a magic key to knowledge. It takes the same work as any other relationship.

    1. Excellent answers …. it has always rankled me with the 9 months thing!! Hahaha i can’t believe she still uses a line like that … but she used to holler that at me between the ages of 12 – 20, and l just switched off or shout back, “But did l ask you too??” Which always shut her up 🙂

      1. I jokingly used a similar “I gave birth to you” thing with Older Daughter once. Her reply was “It’s not my fault you were too stupid to use birth control”🤣🤣🤣

  2. As close as I am to my son, as often as I see him, I would not dare to pretend to know everything about him and what is best for him. I’m his mother, not his controller.

    1. Hey Rebecca – first off, Happy Sunday to you 🙂

      That’s an astute observation comment – yes ‘mother, not controller’ nicely said 🙂

  3. Whenever my children are ill, I wish for see-through bodies. 😉 All of us make judgements with what we know and can see; unfortunately, simply being a mother doesn’t make one an expert psychologist, doctor, chef, etc. Right?

    I will say that anyone can be a great people observer and know-er if talented that way, and *that* person could be a mother who knows her child (CHILD) well.

  4. I love my mom a ton and miss her every day, but she didn’t know me all that well. She had a hard time relating to some of my issues and problems. In some ways, my father knew me better, but even so there were limits. I don’t think anyone has ever known me that well honestly, and that may be partially my fault/preference. While I’m an open book in some areas, in others I am entirely guarded and intend to keep things that way. On the other hand, I know my daughters pretty well, but here again they have certain aspects to themselves I don’t fully understand. Why should I? I haven’t lived their lives or experienced everything they have. I think it’s a bit egoistic to declare that we know someone 100%… I think moms do that sometimes as a way to feel less insecure. Hey, if there is one thing I know it’s my own child! Oh really?

  5. I think your analysis is right. The mother knows her children till a certain age. Till the child shares their feelings with her and she can observe their behavior. After growing up, not so much.

  6. Well a mother does know her children… yes

    However … there is no handbook – there is no right or wrong … when you have a child, no one hands you a manual, there are no instructions. You do best you can and what you believe to be the right way? We do not always totally know best – we hope for the best and try to help guide you along and learn with you?

    Mothers are humans … so are sons… or daughters

    You mother is hurt obviously. She is probably hurt by whatever your father did or how he treated her – you kinda have that in common

    You went through some abusive times with a few people too didn’t you? You know how that hurts at least right? Imagine having children going through that.

    Anyway – I’m just showing you empathy there.

    No one is perfect… you are her child.

    Of course she moans and groans – because she wants to see you…

    I take the same stance – if you don’t wanna be here with me – then don’t.

    What she gonna do? She can’t force you. So she just moans and groans – I would too.

    She gave her life up for her family however it went. She gave you life – do you love your life? Are you happy you are here?

    Now I am not saying she deserves anything – that is up to you because obviously you know the emotions involved and how has effected your own self

    You let her push your buttons – lol

    You give her reactions … good or bad they are reactions

    And family 🙄🤨 dude!! I feel you!

    The bitter aspect, well I can’t really help you there

    Hurt and pain can make people bitter? Maybe she needs compassion? But I don’t know? I always wanna believe everyone is good lol – but that’s not always the case

    There are some mothers who are narcissistic or just not good? So only you know truly how stands

    Are you ok if she dies and you never bond? Do you have a heart attachment of any kind to her at all?

    Do you remember any loving moments with her? Did she make you laugh ever?

    1. Hello Trisha,

      A lot of points and questions.

      I have to ask myself many times if l love my mother naturally or l love her out of a sense of duty. Is she my friend? No, she has never been a friend, she has always been my mother. When l was younger l loved her … but over the years we have drifted apart – my lack of visits has made this happen. I don’t have the same strings of bond to my parents … l felt the same way of my father … l love my parents [despite one is now dead] but that is as far as it goes or went.

      Sure no handbook, but still some things children don’t need to see when growing up from responsible parenting.

      If my mother died how would this affect me? I have pondered about this … would l miss her? I think sadly, it would go as the way of my father … despite everything, l loved him of sorts, he was my father. I feel for my mother more – but it’s not just me that lives a separate life, it’s also her – when l say she moans – it’s not like a daily moan or weekly, it’s a once every six months or so.

      Some families are simply not meant to be families,

      I don’t know how l would feel regarding her death … it’s three years this October since my father passed and l shed a literal tear for him. I don’t know how l will react at her passing, but it’ll not be oceans either, but l will be sad for a while.

      1. I see your point.

        She doesn’t sound like she’s been very supportive to you ??

        Not everyone should be a parent.

        1. Well Trisha, l rang my mother today. First time for a few weeks actually and asked how she is … and l have invited her down for a day in June to my home.

          She wants to visit and l like seeing her, but l love my own company also. You know, it’s not even a full year since Suze and l stopped living together under one roof. We moved out of that in July last year and in those 9/10 months l have become very happy living by myself again.

          I have a spare room here for ‘guests’ whoever that might be … my mother, Suzanne, who knows .. but l have realised that me and myself living with another person is a bad move.

          Now my mother is of the same calibre in thinking – she enjoys her own company more than she enjoys the company of others.

          On that level, she, and l, are the same.

          I was thinking of you today Trisha when l was talking to my mother and pondering on your comments here and thought, l am nearly 58, my mother nearly 81 – l can’t make good all the years of shit that has happened, l can’t forget the mental cruelties of both of my parents and not just one individual – l can forgive to a certain degree, although l still have nightmares in some areas.

          Mum did her best, but the problem is/was we were all trying to survive our father and in mum’s case her husband as well as trying to survive the madness of my mother’s stress and anger and vexations that the only thing we really wanted to achieve was to get away from each other for good.

          We were sadly, a broken family living together then with my parent’s divorce we became a scattered family. I think sadly that way too much damage was performed by my father to us all.

          But, on my walk today in the nature reserve l did think on your question – how would l feel at her passing?

        2. ❤️ oh I’m so glad for you ❤️

          Nothing wrong with little visit … will be nice – she won’t be around much longer – 81 – that’s a long life.

          That is very sweet to give her some peace ❤️ or try too we see

          If she is similar to you, she probably won’t stay too long. I bet she is just thrilled and all excited!! I bet her smile is from ear to ear

          Ya know if she went through abuse… hmm 🤔… well it could be she likes her own company because she is not hurt that way? If I remember correctly she is cancer horoscope right?

          So yeah – you get protective and go into a shell so – I can get that too.

          We all have a cross to bear in life. It happens – but look how strong you have been? Check you …still surviving and shit lol 🙌❤️ look how strong you are now 😊❤️

          I went through some pretty brutal things myself. Both from ex and life

          All of it taught me lessons. I learned … and some of it… even though devastating in the moment – actually is giving me a better life ❤️🙌

          I wouldn’t be where I am if all those events didn’t take place – and I think I needed some of those lessons and all of it has made me stronger and deeper sense of love of life?

          I wish none of it happened – but it did so… it did teach me. Perhaps it taught you too? You seem to be sitting quite nicely in life, no?

          So… let your mom be all impressed by you ❤️

          Have fun with her – don’t be heavy … enjoy your moments… they are few.

          And ya know – whatever… you make a little old lady happy for a moment – what might be nothing to you, also might be world to her

          My kids know I am old school lol … I speak funny, use funny old sayings from 100 years ago lol … and I don’t always understand all their stuff?? Whatever

          They have to cut me some slack cause I prefer 1985, and I do not “get” their things lol

          I try and they teach me. But ya know is different world than mine.

          I think you are very sweet ❤️ you are a very impressive man – and you know I don’t usually say that about men lol ✌️

          You are kind and loving towards your ex – and not making her cry or be alone. ❤️

          And then – here with your mum ❤️ I think you will be glad you did ❤️

          At least you will have a memory for later … so make it a good one ❤️

  7. I had a very difficult relationship with my mom. I feel she knew very little about me. I was angry about it for too much of my life. As an adult, I learned more about her upbringing and learned to forgive. It took a very long time. It is not for everyone to do. I feel her mom knew her less than she knew me and I knew my kids more than my mom knew me.

    There are no secret skills that a mother has. She either cares and tries to know her young children or not. Once they grow up, there is little they can do to see inside them unless the child wants them to.

    1. I can understand a lot of that Lauren and as Trisha said above, there is no handbook, but there is the common sense book of people parenting – my father l feel should have read that more and whilst my mother l think ‘read’ something, as she aged and became more and more bitter at her lot that she was out for a revenge attack on my father and we just got in her way.

      My mum and l used to be really close but from my thirties l started to just get on with my own life. When my parents divorced we all just scattered like the winds and l think that was how it was meant to be for us.

      It saddens me at times … but then sometimes , like now , my dark vaults open up and as l age l am able to see and remember more clearly things which l think l hid from my mind and that makes me a bit more clinical than emotional.

      I think parents unless they are in regular contact and live close to their children, lose track of who they are .. afterall , they are only family, it’s not like they are partners.

  8. I can’t see the logic. A mother may know her son – as a son, a child. Not an adult, not a father, not a husband, not a buddy, not a lover, not a business professional, not of his secret life. I think there’s a lot more she wouldn’t know, especially if she’s not been around all the time.

    I was told once I had children I would never stop being a parent. This is true because you never stop worrying about your children even when they’re grown up and have their own kids. You worry because you don’t know.

    1. Hey Ian, l think that is very true – parents never stop being parents and it takes time for them to accept the move on as well and let go and some manage that well and others not so well.

      Parents may worry, but sadly they no longer have the full control as once they did when their charges were younger.

  9. As a mother who is known to give unsolicited advice I would never say that I always KNOW what is best for my children now that they are adults. That is something they need to decide. What I will say (and I would like to believe about others) is that I always WANT what is best for them. This could explain some your mother lying to you about talking to you sister if she is trying not to hurt your feelings.
    In the last few years my daughters have come to me several times for advice or counsel on situations. They may not always take my advice but have thanked me for being there. It is the best feeling in the world that they trust me like that and appreciate me.

    1. Hey Ruth, sadly no – my mother is lying to me about my sister because she is afraid of my sister.

      I experienced this with my father towards the end of his life, he had become terrified of my sister.

      It’s good that your daughters trust you.

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