where a woman can build her strength and freedom

How can I build a good strong connection with my mother?

Colorful tree branches hanging down, framing the view of a beautiful blue lake and the not too distant other lake shore at the horizon.  A perfect place to walk and build a strong connection with mother.

Let us walk along the water. And speak of things that matter. Like your

You are wondering how you can build a good strong connection with her.

I hope your Mom is still living. If not, I hope she lives in your heart.

Wherever she is today, let’s think of her.

She would be glad that you think of her today.

I think of my Mom often.

She died many years ago, but I feel her love and pride and reassurance to this

I talk to her about what is important to me, just as I always did.

Do I believe we actually communicate in spirit?
No, I don’t, but I respect whatever you believe in this regard.

I just know how much joy it would give her to know she is not forgotten.

Honor thy mother

Every time I remember her, I am honoring her.

One of the Ten Commandments includes “Honor thy mother…”

So let’s honor your Mom today.

You will be blessed.
Not because you are a Christian or a Jew or a Muslim or other faith.
You may be any religion or no religion, and you will still be blessed.


Because your mother gave you life.

When you honor your mother your soul is filled with life.

Are you with me?

Let’s DO this!

Let me offer you three ways to honor your mother.

As you do them, you will build a good strong connection with her.

1) Forgive her
2) Find the gold in her
3) Enjoy the gold together

Step One. Forgive her

I just had my birthday a few days ago. I thanked my mother for giving birth to

Back then she and my Daddy and my two brothers were living in a little house
down on the beach of Lake Erie.

I imagined them climbing the steps to the road, and him driving her to the

She had read a book Childbirth Without Fear, and I was the first baby born in that
hospital without anesthetic. She was always forging new paths.
I chose the words on her gravestone: Our Pioneer Mother.
I wish we had had more time to explore all her pioneering ideas.
I honor her through my writing on this website.

She was an excellent mother. But when I was 14 she became psychotic.
Extremely delusional with paranoid schizophrenia.

The resulting pain, chaos and conflict and my rebellion against her broke us
apart. We never reconciled for ten years, until after I had had two children.

Through psychoanalysis and becoming a Christian I learned to forgive myself
and her, and I was able to love her again.

I hope you will never go through such a time.

The best way to prevent it is by forgiving your mother now rather than later.

Why forgive?

We must forgive our mother for any ways that she hurt us or failed us,
regardless of how justified we feel in our anger and resentment.

She may indeed have been cruel to us. She may indeed have criticized us
constantly. She may indeed have failed to comfort us and to be there for us
when we needed her. She may indeed have betrayed our trust.

If she did, she had serious problems. She may have been ill. With depression,
personality disorder, alcoholism, drug addiction, psychosis.

Or she may just have been repeating what was done to her as a child.

You still have to honor her.
And the only way you will be able to do that is to forgive her.

A psychological necessity

Forgiveness is actually psychologically necessary for self preservation.

Whatever you cannot forgive, you are doomed to repeat.

Freud discovered the underlying mechanism.
He called it the repetition compulsion.

We are unconsciously compelled to inflict upon others whatever pain
has been inflicted upon us.

The girl who is criticized grows up to criticize her own children.
Even if she has vowed she will never be like her parents.

The girl who is beaten grows up to beat her own children.
Even if she has vowed she will never be like her parents.

The only thing that has the power to stop this repetition is forgiveness.

You must forgive your mother and yourself in order to end the cycle.

Words of forgiveness

So let me offer you some words of forgiveness that you could say aloud,
in private, to begin the process—if you feel so inclined.

If these words don’t feel right for you, write yourself better ones.

But do say them aloud, when you are ready…

“Dear Mom,
One day I may have a child.
I know I will make mistakes as a parent.
I know that weaknesses and failings of mine will cause my child pain.
I know I will do things I later regret.
I am human.
I can only hope that one day my child will forgive me.

In that spirit, Mom,
knowing you and I are both just human beings
trying to do our best in this world,
today I want you to know I forgive you
for any pain you have ever caused me.

My heart forgives you.
And I love you.
The way I hope my child will forgive me and love me.

Today I am letting go of any anger and resentment toward you
that I have kept inside me.

I let it go.

This doesn’t mean, going forward, that I am willing to be hurt.
No, I am not willing to be hurt.
Nor am I willing to hurt you.

I will not allow any painful words or actions toward me,
nor will I allow any painful words or actions toward you.

If you hurt me I will set firm boundaries so that you can’t.
And I will encourage you to seek help to stop doing hurtful things.

Just as if I hurt you I will seek help to stop doing hurtful things.
Let’s both take good care of ourselves and our relationship.

I hope you will always forgive me.

I will always forgive you.

That sounds like a Dolly Parton song, doesn’t it Mom?
She sang I will always love you.

Today I am singing I will always forgive you.

And as you say this, you will be blessed.

I hope you feel it.

Now your heart is open for the next steps…

StepTwo: Find the gold in her

You want to know something funny?
You don’t know your mother as well as you think you do.

She is hiding.
Even the most open mother hides deep aspects of herself from her children.

She fears your judgment.
She fears you will think her thoughts and dreams are ridiculous.

So she doesn’t tell you what she really thinks and feels about certain things.
She tells you what she thinks you are willing to hear.

SO—it is time for you to go on a treasure hunt!

It is time for you to find the gold in your mother!

And when you find it, grab hold of it and don’t let go.

How will you find the gold?

You will find it by gently asking her questions.
Here is what you need to discover:

What does your mother love?

What does your mother think?

What does your mother believe?

What is she living for?

What does she hope she will leave behind in this world when she goes?

What would she MOST HOPE would be her legacy to you?

Ask her.

Then just listen. Listen and learn.

Do not judge, debate, or challenge her.
Just listen and do your best to fully understand and comprehend her.
Finally gain her trust as a person who can appreciate who she really is.

Step 3: Enjoy the gold together

Take time now to think deeply about who your mother really is.
Ponder the dimensions of her that you never knew or never appreciated.
Ponder what her values are, and what her hopes are for her life.

Then find something deep you have in common.

Find the common core between you.

When you find it, allow yourself to rejoice in it.
This is where you truly connect!
This is the dimension of her that can live on in you after she is gone.

See if you can find a way to pursue it together.

Find a way to enjoy it together!

Find a way to honor the best of her in your own actions in this world.

Just to offer you some possible examples:

Suppose you discover that your mother’s deepest love is for the well being of

She may not even have a pet. She may never have had a pet! But down deep in
her heart, she cherishes little animals more than just about anything.

What if you do, too?

You could volunteer a few regular hours together at a local rescue shelter.
You could combine a small donation from each of you to give them.
You could start sending each other the little online videos of rescued pets.
You could adopt a pet together.

Doing even ONE of these actions together would go a long way toward
building a good strong connection between you and your mother!

You may find your common core in creating art, in writing, music, computers,
in genealogy, in a political cause, in religious service, in community building.

Not a common hobby—a common purpose.

You will know when you strike gold together!
You will know when her eyes light up with joy and anticipation!

Enjoy the gold together in a way that recognizes it as part of her.

Enjoy it in a way that recognizes it as her legacy to you.

Now. Not after she is gone. Now!


Do you feel open to seeing your mother in new light?

Do you feel drawn to one of these ways of building a good strong connection
with her?

Write and tell me!

Dr. Hall