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312 of 315 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2011
I have always carried with me the feeling that I grew up without a mother, even though I had a mother. My mother was physically present (she even stayed at home and did not work most of the years of my childhood) and certainly not a malicious person by any stretch of the imagination. So this was a crazy feeling to carry around with me as an adult. This book confirmed for me that I am in fact not crazy to feel this way, and explained very clearly how and why many daughters enter adulthood with the feeling of being motherless or under-mothered, how this affects them in their adult life, and finally gives very practical advice for how to recover.

This books is clear, well-written, nuanced, and organized. In chapter two, The Many Faces of the Good Mother, it provides a clear, balanced picture of what it looks like when a mother is meeting her child's needs fully (not perfectly!). Other recovery books have helped me to see that abandonment and neglect exist on a spectrum (i.e. just because you weren't left as a baby on someone's doorstep doesn't mean you weren't abandoned on some level as a child). This book helped me to refine my understanding even further and hone in on the specific holes that I experienced in my relationship with my mother--holes that are still affecting how I function as an adult, and how I function as a mother myself. It isn't about blame or resentment, but about having clarity and taking responsibility for your needs so that you can move on. The book is very affirming in telling the reader: if it is still bothering you, then it is still bothering you. It's not over and done with until you feel finished with it. This book is written to help you move on so that you can think about other things.

I found some (not all) of the recovery exercises and suggestions to be a little on the cheesy side, but as I'm by now a seasoned reader of self-help books, I have developed a high tolerance for this kind of thing. I'm sure that different readers will take what is useful for them. As long as the book can benefit me hugely overall I don't mind if it throws out a few suggestions that I'm not crazy about. I definitely rate this book as a very important one in my overall journey in recovery because I firmly believe that there are very important issues specific to the mother-daughter relationship that need to be handled separately. Finally someone did (very gracefully, I might add), and I am really grateful! The world desperately needs its "good enough" mothers, and this book is one good tool for finding your way back to what that means when it was not modeled for you. Really, what could be more important?
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91 of 93 people found the following review helpful
on August 20, 2010
Having read and treasure/d Cori's book Healing From Trauma, I expected this book to be helpful, succinct, easy to follow, and informative--and it possesses all of these qualities. Regardless of the particulars of your formative experiences or relationsips with your parents, Cori presents knowledge AND wisdom applicable to all who hope to grow from injured children to whole adults. Among other helpful practices, she includes guidance on how and with whom to make up NOW for what you missed THEN and, by remedying deficits, how to be the person that each child is meant to become. I'd recommed it to anyone at any stage of re-parenting or who might be wondering what parts of him/herself need nurturing and/or developing.
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63 of 63 people found the following review helpful
on June 15, 2013
If this list describes you, then you must read this book. Then find a counselor and get some help to deal with it. It will hurt to read this book. You will have realizations that are mind-blowing and gut-wrenching. But you will find a lot of answers for why you are the way you are. This list is a quote from the book.

* When you see a tender mother-child interaction, you are emotionally triggered. You may feel choked up and teary or push away the pain by becoming critical and dismissive. (It hurts to see what you didn't have.)
* You would just as soon not look deeply into your relationship with your mother. Better to "let sleeping dogs lie."
* When you visit your mother, you find yourself numbing or going into a trance state in which you are not fully present. Visits are always upsetting, and you find yourself back in painful childhood feelings.
* You crave true closeness yet feel uncomfortable and afraid of it. It is unfamiliar to you.
* You feel some core shame and suffer from feelings (often hidden) that there is something unlovable about you.
* You avoid having children of your own, feeling somehow not quite like "parent material."

Remember Bruce Willis's character in The Sixth Sense? The realizations I had were like when he realizes at the end that he's one of the dead people. His life flashes before his eyes in a wave of disbelief and suddenly everything makes sense. He looks back on all the times that things were not quite right but he couldn't explain them at the time.

Now, there's an explanation.
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119 of 130 people found the following review helpful
on October 15, 2010
For every undermothered adult child.. The book is for the undermothered daughters maybe but even men in the same situation should read and learn. This book does not make you hate your mother, it just tells you what happened to you and how you were robbed of your childhood and HOW TO get over it.
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65 of 69 people found the following review helpful
on July 18, 2012
Ever wonder why your children feel there was something missing in their childhood? I wondered and pondered through family separations...never able to see where I failed. I purchased this book more to see what was lacking in my upbringing and in the process found what was lacking in my mothering.

I have now purchased three more copies of this book and will give them to my children with my sincere apologies. Even when you love them, keep them clean, well fed, educated and protect them from any and all dangers....sometimes it's still not enough and they won't forgive you for missing that one element.
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
on September 21, 2010
I had high expectations after reading "Healing from Trauma" which was very helpful. This book combines clear analysis with practical suggestions for how to deal with deep childhood wounds. As someone who had an emotionally absent mother, this book gave me insights that help me understand what happened to me and concrete steps to help me on my healing journey.
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66 of 73 people found the following review helpful
on February 24, 2012
This book.....enough cannot be said about it. I have finally started to wake up to the reality of my childhood trauma. All my life I sweeped it under a rug. Hoping it will just go away. But as I am learning more and more now, our body remembers, not to mention our mind. And as I am getting older I notice my ineffective patterns in relationships, and generally in life. I have started this journey about a year and a half ago. It has been full of processing old pain that was never cycled through. This book validated my experience and put into words what I couldn't speak my whole life. Because I couldn't phrase it, I continued on while believing that something is wrong with me, in my make-up. It made me feel isolated many times, and depressed, very depressed. Thank you to this author for giving so many ''adult-children'' like myself a voice. This book gives me renewed inspiration to continue healing, and experience life as it should be. With love and trust.
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95 of 107 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2012
I already knew I had a damaged relationship with my mother and that it was causing attachment issues in other relationships. I was looking for more ways to help myself than just how to find a therapist to work through things with me. I am already seeing a therapist and have been working on some these issues by myself for some years. I wasn't looking for an epiphany for why I am the way I am. I guess I'm not quite the audience the author was writing for. I thought the author over stated their points a little too often and I felt led around with no real way of helping or, as the author put it, re-mothering myself. (E)
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2012
This book could be too intense for those just facing this layer of trauma from their childhood, and adulthood too, so be sure to take it at a pace that's good for you. I also recommend reading it with a trusted friend who can identify with the issues from their own experience. This book can help take you to a whole new level in loving and relating to yourself and other significant relationships in your life.
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49 of 57 people found the following review helpful
on September 5, 2010
I am impressed beyond words with the Emotionally Absent Mother. Jasmin Cori has integrated and assimilated so many difficult concepts and written about them in such precise and profound ways! I am nearly finished with the book, but I don't want it to end! I have been a psychotherapist for more than twenty years, weaving my way through theories and interventions for those adult clients who were under-mothered as children, and here is everything I needed all along, in one book. I am hopeful that this book will be clear validation for thousands of us who have been waiting years for its release.
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