“Help! My Mother is a Mammy, and Resents My Desire for a Nicer Life Than Hers!!”

Hey Christelyn!First, I want to say thank you for showing me the light. Your site led me to discover BWE groups all over and has exposed me to the world I was ignoring. Your site also showed me that I was normal. I’ve always liked non black men and I always was made to feel weird because I did. When I saw the large community of black women that decided that they wanted to open up their dating pool, I knew I found a home. But, while I have a home at your site, as well as others, I’m still struggling to establish my safe place away from the computer.

My biggest obstacle to accepting myself and changing myself for the better has been my mother. It’s always been just my mother and I, since she is a single mother and I am her only child. As i’ve been reading BWE sites and learning more things, I see that my mother didn’t give me all the resources I needed. She provided for me; gave me everything in the world I would want. But she didn’t provide for me as a woman. I never saw my mother put on makeup, fix her hair, or lay out an outfit. I notice she doesn’t take much care of herself. The most she would do is go to a salon to get her hair pressed, but that was just so she could easily put it into a ponytail or bun.

We never would butt heads; besides an argument of two over cleaning up after myself as a teen. Now it seems we argue quite a bit. You see, in the recent months, due to my desire to be more feminine, we’ve started to see things differently. When I would go out with her and I’d have makeup on, fixed my hair, or wore a flattering outfit, she would make negative comments, such as, “We’re just going to (insert place here). Why’d you get dressed up? ” or “You’re going like that? “. She would even say these things to me if we were going to a special event, such as a wedding or funeral. It seems like the tiniest bit of effort that I put into my appearance is something to make a negative comment about. It makes me feel as though she won’t be happy until I go back to wearing jeans and novelty shirts with a bare face and a ponytail (that was my uniform before I learned to love being feminine).

Also, she’s made a huge effort to be grotesque. From passing gas in public, to picking her nose when others are watching. My mother is in her early fifties, so just getting older and not caring is not a reason. She especially does it in my presence (maybe as her way to offset my usual “over the top” appearance). It just makes me wonder when she gave up on herself and trying to put on a good appearance. I know she still cares about people’s opinions. We talk about it a lot.

We also talk about her finding a husband (she’s never been married). She’s given up hope on it. As a future sex and relationship therapist, she often humors me by asking for advice. I tell her that someone will come. I never have the heart to tell her that in order to attract someone, you must put in the effort. Effort doesn’t mean burping in public, wearing sandals with uncared for feet, and cursing all the time. It’s like she’s turned into a caricature, rather than a woman.

Now, leading back to your site, I’ve recently become more vocal of my preference in men. I’ve also started calling out black men for their actions instead of turning my head away and ignoring it in order to support a “brother”. This is the thing where a lot of our arguments stem from. Just recently she wanted me to see the latest Kevin Hart movie and I refused due to me no longer supporting people who hate me. We got into a disagreement, which led to her calling me “white washed” because I stated that most black males from my generation degrade black women (I’m in my early twenties, in case you were wondering). As for me dating out, I told her my reasons for preferring a non black male over a black one and she continued to spout the same Blackistani nonsense that has kept black women stuck on black men for so long (they won’t love you, they’ll hurt you, they’re evil).

I hate to admit it, but my mother is the kind of black woman that BWE sites warn you to stay away from. But I still love my mother and I don’t want her to stay in the trap of Blackistan. I fear this is the reason she’s still single and feels alone. I feel as she sees her daughter abandoning the “typical” mindset, she feels that she did something wrong. I feel there are many more black women out there with mothers who want to hold them back, whether it be from being feminine or expanding options. Could you shine some light on why black mothers are like this towards daughters who don’t want the “okey doke” anymore? Also, when do these mothers give up on expanding their knowledge? When do they give up on being desired and feminine? What makes them decide that they must make their daughters like this as well?

Thank you for your time. I know this was long, so I appreciate you reading this. I look forward to your incite as a daughter and a mother of girls. I don’t mind if you share this. I encourage it actually. I would love to get opinions from the community I see as my extended family now.

With much love and support,

A caring daughter

Daughter of a mammy.


Okay. First off, you need to understand that you are not responsible for your mother’s happiness, and if she decides that she’d rather live her life the way she does, you’ll only have to accept it. You won’t get far trying to convince someone to do something they have absolutely no interest in doing.

But…on the issue of your mother trying to influence your desire to live a different life than hers, you’re going to have to be resolute. It’s sad, but I find that often, single mothers have conflicting feelings about their daughters making different decisions than they have. Some even seem to express jealousy.

As an example, take a read at one BB&W fan, happily married, said on this subject:

I have watched EVERY woman in my family destroyed by DBR men. Everyone is pregnant by 16, maybe 18 if they’re “lucky”. The men never married them and they all had multiple kids by multiple men. Some of them managed to get married but NONE married well. They married thieves, brash adulterers, and pedophiles. It is the stuff of movies and can be terribly disheartening for a young girl looking for healthy examples.

My mom fell right into this category. Multiple kids, all different dads. Dating different men. Evictions. Abuse. Government assistance. Confusing messages from church (when she felt like being saved). A mess.

Something in my heart told me when I was a little girl that this would not be my life. I refused. I didn’t get pregnant. I got several degrees. 6 figure jobs. Traveled the world. Dated wonderful men of different backgrounds (and married one who treats me like gold!). Wonderful counseling over the years helped me find my voice and recognize the extent of dysfunction I grew up around. Once I got to this place, I felt wonderful, and I was going to save the women in my family with these realizations.

Needless to say, that didn’t happen. I was brutally rejected. Accused of being white, bougie, and thinking I was better. My mom never said these things outright (my aunts and cousins did), but she punished me with coldness and criticism that cut through to the soul as my life flourished and I prospered, and the light on her DBR marriage and low level life shined more and more. She nearly destroyed me. I literally had to cut all contact with her. Haven’t seen her in a few years.

I think one of the main reasons more women don’t break free of the dysfunction of the BC is because of the relationship with their mothers. You feel an INCREDIBLE amount of guilt for the stark contrast between your life and hers. And she may very well resent you for, because she has allowed herself to become damaged over the years. In the end, every woman who wants to live well must make a decision: live your life for YOU or live it for the approval of others. It’s probably one of the hardest things you’ll ever have to decide, but beautifully rewarding if you have the courage to choose living well. As much as I miss my family sometimes, I do not regret living this peaceful, prosperous, abundant life.

I think I’ll just leave it there. Don’t think there’s much I can say to top that. However I will say this: My mother, who was raised by an emotionally unavailable single mother and whose father she’d only met once, sometimes exhibited envy and jealousy that I had a father present. Even though it’s what she wanted for her kids intellectually, the hurt of her father’s rejection trickled in from time to time.

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