“I was always paying the price for my mother’s continued marriage to my father, and she did not find in her relationship with him the emotional stability she wanted.” With these words, Ahmed Abdel Aziz (32 years old), who works in an accounting firm, tells Al Jazeera Net how his life was affected without him knowing the personality type of his mother, who… She suffers from borderline personality disorder.
She also did not know this, but after the successive failure that befell her young son in his first marriage, and even in his work, he realized that there was a problem, as a result of which he decided to turn to a psychiatrist who told him that his mother’s pathological attachment to him was the result of her lack of emotional satisfaction during the stages of her life. This is the reason behind his constant failure.
Between the traits of a borderline mother and a narcissistic father, Ahmed lived a confusing childhood. The father wanted him to be a copy of himself, and the mother struggled to prevent that from happening. He was a stubborn child. This is how Abdel Aziz narrates, “My mother always told me, laughing, how I used to scream and insist on asking for everything. She fulfilled all my requests to stop screaming and hitting my head against the wall.”
He added, “I grew up and did the same thing to my wife. She left me and went to her family, and she described me as crazy and childish.” He continued, “She was right, but I did not understand because my mother told me that she wanted to control me.”
Diary of a daughter with a borderline mother
Through YouTube, the American girl, Liz, began narrating the facts of her life with her mother, who suffers from borderline personality disorder, and how her life was a constant attempt to improve her mother’s life, and that the result, no matter how much she tried, was zero, according to her description.
Liz tried to communicate with her mother’s friends, to find out why she was far from their invitations, and always described them as not interested in her, but the truth that Liz discovered was that her mother was the one who did this to them, and that she always wanted to take and not give, to protect her from abandonment and rejection. But in the end she gets nothing.
Liz had a difficult life as a single mother, so she documented her journey through video to show others who are suffering that they are not alone.
Studies indicate that the influence of a borderline mother on her children appears in the early stages of her relationship with the child, as mothers with borderline personality disorder often raise in other, more dangerous contexts, such as depression, drug abuse, and low support from those around them.
Studies found that these mothers smiled less and played fewer games with their children, and mothers subject to the study with borderline personality disorder showed less sensitive behavior in dealing with their children.
Studies also found that mothers with borderline personality disorder scored higher on a measure of overprotection for children, in adulthood, and that they encouraged independence less.
Experiences that children do not experience
In the stage of children’s verbal development, the influence of the liminal mother becomes more evident. The mother’s unstable identity, mood swings, and fear of abandonment can combine to break the psychological, social, and behavioral development of her children. The relationship often lacks compassion and empathy between the mother and her children, because the mother is unable to recognize affects emotional needs or formulates appropriate responses, in addition to leaving children without a model for healthy interpersonal functioning, conflict resolution and emotional regulation.
One of the affected people, who chose to refer to her name as “N.A.” (29 years old), told Al Jazeera Net, “I grew up with a mother who lacked emotion and did not know how to hug me once, and she could not provide me with solutions to problems other than that I was envied or that others were jealous of me. I realized that there was a problem, but with time I realized that there was a mistake and I struggled a lot during a long journey of treatment to correct those mistakes.”
In the highest stage of development among children aged 11 to 18 years, researchers compared a group of children of borderline mothers with mothers with other disorders, and the researchers found that children of borderline mothers suffer from higher levels of emotional disturbance and suicidal ideation, and 9% Of these children, they had already attempted suicide, and 45% of the group suffered from severe bouts of depression. It was noted that this condition in the children disappeared when the mother’s depression was controlled.
Constant standing on a hot tin
“The borderline personality is characterized by constant, stormy fluctuations in feelings, with which the stability of any relationship cannot be guaranteed,” this is how psychiatrist Radwa Saeed Abdel Azim, consultant psychiatrist at Kasr Al-Aini and head of the sexual health department at the International Psychiatric Association, describes in her interview with Al Jazeera Net the impact of growing up with a mother. Hadiya adds that the constant feeling of being on top of a hot tin makes it difficult for you to stand in the place and cannot run on it.
The psychiatry consultant continued, “Although the borderline mother has a tremendous amount of emotions and a high ability to bear responsibility, her main problem lies in her inability to manage her feelings properly and balance in managing the bouts of anger and depression that afflict her from time to time. Things also become complicated if he is absent.” Father, this is hell for the children.”
Radwa says, “The severe mood swings between severe depression and extreme happiness experienced by the borderline mother put children under psychological pressure and make them lose the emotional stability and security required for healthy psychological development. If one of the children carries manic-depressive genes, he will be more susceptible to developing bipolar affective disorder.” “More than any other child who has the same genes, but happened to grow up in a more psychologically stable family.”
Dr. Radwa Abdel Azim added, “The mother’s subjection to psychological treatment is the only way to get through the bottleneck and ensure that life passes with the least amount of losses. It is better for the children’s lives when they are young to have an alternative figure capable of containment, such as an aunt or grandmother, in addition to the presence of the father.” And engaging in activities away from the atmosphere fraught with the details of the mother, so that they can escape from a life of constant fluctuations.”