ARE YOU A GOOD ENOUGH MOM--OR ARE YOU AN EXTREME PARENT???
1)GLOM on MOM: overly attached
Martyred, overly indulgent mother. She exists only for family and through her kid; her happiness is derived from meeting all the needs/wants of her cherished children. Her needs/wants are non existent, buried under layers of self denial.
“ME? Whaddaboutme??? I don’t care what happens to me as long as my kids are HAPPY.”
EMOTIONAL DEFAULT POSITION: Worry
EMOTIONAL IQ: Overly aware of others’ feelings, poor insight towards self, passive aggressive.
BOUNDARIES: Mushy, overly close, tends to smother, reactively co-dependent.
SENSE OF SELF: DIMINISHED
PHYSICAL CONDITION: Generally poor
OVER FUNCTIONING SCALE: extreme
THERAPEUTIC GOAL: GET a LIFE!
THERAPEUTIC TASK: Arbitrarily say no; monitor/log automatic thoughts/feelings,
write down alternative/constructive thoughts/feelings/ behaviors. SPA TIME & MESSAGES!
- 2GOOD: TOO GOOD FOR OWN GOOD
Harried hover mother -- OCD super mom.
As much as she loves her kids and they know they can count on her, she is also driven by her own obsessive/compulsive (OC) impulse to ward off chaos, remain in control, even dominate.
“As long as I can make my kids productive members of society. “
EMOTIONAL DEFAULT POSITION: anxious/resentful
EMOTIONAL IQ: Out of touch with vulnerable feelings like sadness and loss. Knows she has needs but doesn’t know how to get them met. She just works harder and more compulsively. Passive aggressive to aggressive.
OVER FUNCTIONING SCALE: annoyingly bloated
BOUNDARIES: RIGID, intrusive when questioning others, compulsively co-dependent.
SENSE of SELF: performance based -- derived through how hard she works, how clean her house is, how smart her kids are.
PHYSICAL CONDITION: Generally GOOD shape though stressed out!
THERAPEUTIC GOAL: Control her own internal anxiety/ rather than control her external environment and others.
THERAPEUTIC TASK: YOGA, MINDFUL MEDITATION, DO SOMETHING FOR THE SHEER FUN OF IT, SPA TIME & MESSAGES.
3)GEM: GOOD ENOUGH MOTHER (securely attached).
Loves herself AND her kids. High self esteem/high sociability. Relatively easy to become emotionally close; comfortable depending on others/comfortable depending on oneself. Healthy balance between meeting her own needs and others’ needs.
“Happy parents make for happy kids.”
EMOTIONAL DEFAULT POSITION: NONE. She experiences and expresses full range of emotions appropriate to the situation -- as opposed to a reactive-defensive stance or repressive, denying stance. Can give and receive help appropriately.
EMOTIONAL IQ: Very High. Emotionally attuned parent/wife/friend; assertive without being aggressive.
OVER FUNCTIONING SCALE: BALANCED. Her level of functioning fits the situation--as opposed to a knee-jerk reaction to jump in and fix, or give up and flee! Has ‘healthy-entitlement’.
BOUNDARIES: CLEAR, FIRM yet FLEXIBLE--contingent on situation at hand! Healthy co-dependency.
SENSE OF SELF: Holds herself and deserving others in HIGH ESTEEM.
Comfortable in relationships and in groups, easily tolerates being alone. Gets that she is more of a human “being” than a human “doing”. COMFORTABLE in her own SKIN!
PHYSICAL CONDITION: GOOD, takes care of self, looks great for her age!
THERAPEUTIC GOAL: SPREAD the word by MODELING age appropriate and situation-sensitive behavior.
THERAPEUTIC TASK: Continue to act/react RESPONSIVELY; FOLLOW INSTINCTS; CONTINUE with STIMULATING ALONE TIME/ GIRLFRIEND TIME/SPA TIME & MESSAGES.
4) NO GEM (NOT GOOD ENOUGH MOTHER). Out to LUNCH--PERMANENTLY!
Benignly neglectful, somewhat disorganized, spacey, loves her kids, but doesn’t “do” for them. Leans more towards distance than involvement; dictated more by her own needs for “alone-time” rather than her kids needs/demands for attention.
“As long as they know they’re loved ... They’ll be fine, they’ll figure it out. “
EMOTIONAL DEFAULT POSITION: Variable, disconnected.
EMOTIONAL IQ: POOR. La La Land; emotionally mis-attuned parent; over-values ‘BEING’, under values ‘DOING’; passive aggressive.
UNDER FUNCTIONING SCALE: Under functions for others/over functions for self, self absorbed with own wishes/needs/desires.
BOUNDARIES: FUZZY, inconsistent; emotionally mis-attuned; not sure that Mom will show up! NO co-dependency.
SENSE OF SELF: Variable, HIGHER self esteem, LOWER other esteem. Sees self as being more productive than she actually is!
PHYSICAL CONDITION: Unpredictable.
THERAPEUTIC GOAL: WAKE UP your KIDS NEED/WANT YOU!
THERAPEUTIC TASK: SPEND 1-2 HOURS OF ALONE TIME WITH EACH CHILD WEEKLY DOING ACTIVITY OF THEIR CHOOSING. GET OUT OF YOUR OWN HEAD. Help with homework/attend PTA meetings regularly/watch their games/pick up children on time.
YAYATHERAPY FAMILY FIX: TRY TO RESIDE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MOTHERING CONTINUUM!