Single mothers and excluded fathers

There is a certain dynamic played out in contemporary society. I have noticed that there are mothers who voluntarily exclude fathers from their child’s life.

There are many different life situations like the death of the father of the child, in vitro fertilization when the father is unknown. But today let me speak about mothers who restrict access of the father to the child, thus prohibiting the father to see the child, spend time with the child or take part in parenthood.

Sometimes this happens when the father has severe problems with himself – be it drug addiction, narcissistic personality, or other psychological disorders. In such cases it is understandable.

But what to do if the father is quite normal but his ex prohibits him to see the child?

Usually, single mothers are women who have been hurt. Their relationship didn’t work out and they live alone with a baby. They hold a grudge in their hearts against men, fathers of their children. Quite often single mothers are angry with their ex-partners or husbands. They didn’t forgive them and didn’t let go of the negative feelings or memories.

The problem is that in such a case the child will sense it. The child, subconsciously, will feel the anger of the mother towards the father. The child will feel, though not understand, that the father is a ‘bad man’ and doesn’t deserve to be loved. Remember that the child was created by two persons – a man and a woman. It consists of 2 energies – feminine and masculine.

What is the problem when you’re a single mother and you don’t respect your ex?

Your child growing up in such energies can develop low self-esteem. It can feel that masculinity is bad and excluded. It can sense that if the father is considered by the mother as a bad man, then the child who consists of 50% of the father can start to disrespect his own masculinity.

What happens when the child grows up without the father? Especially when the father is excluded.

Such a child will have a negative view of the father and masculinity. Father figure shows how to be a man, how to go to the outside world. Being a mother and a father are two different roles. Mother stands for femininity, nurture. Father stands for masculinity, the power to act, and take decisions.

Single mothers who are hurt can be, unfortunately, very proud. They’d rather say “I don’t want this person in my child’s life. I will grow the baby on my own” than “I will allow my ex to take care of his child”.

The child’s interest is the most important here. Not your grudge against your ex. The child needs love and support from both parents and single motherhood with excluded father will never substitute it.

Family constellations for beginners

In this short article, I will explain in simple words what family constellations are about. That’s always a tough question to explain.

It didn’t start within you.

Family constellations are about healing the relationships in your family, which in turn heal you and your perception of reality.

You haven’t been born as a white sheet of paper. You come to this world IN A GIVEN FAMILY. What happened there, in the family, influences you. You might have the same emotional issues, suffer from the same diseases, or encounter the same difficulties of finding the right partner, just as an example.

These are the so-called patterns or emotional blockages. Dynamics and unconscious scenarios according to which you respond in a given situation. The key in family constellations is to heal it, so that we are not burdening the next generation with our problems and blockages.

Genetics and epigenetics

As you know we inherit many characteristics after our ancestors, like the eyes or hair color and body structure. I bet you heard a couple of times that ‘you look like your mother’ or ‘you have your father’s eyes.

Epigenetics says that we inherit also the emotions and traumas, that our ancestors didn’t deal with. We have the same reactions, the same challenges. For example, constant lack of money, unhappy relationships, divorced women left alone with children.

Now the question comes: why should I care about my ancestors problems? Why should they be transmitted to me and why should I deal with them?

Our bond with ancestors is something unique in the scale of human relationships and interactions. Due to the fact that we are not born as a tabula rasa, we get the ‘download’ from our parents and ancestors. They have created us. We are part of them if we like it or not. I don’t try to say here that if our parents and grandparents had cancer, we are also gonna get it. No. This depends if we inherit their ‘way of thinking and reacting’ or we take the power to change it.

In the family history, it might have happened that our grandmother got pregnant during the war and her husband was killed or escaped. This might influence the next generations, for example, her granddaughter is a single mother. The pattern plays out again but in different circumstances.

We are not separated beings. We are connected to each other. And family constellations profoundly prove so and give us the tool to change these dynamics and start creating your own ones.

The best way to learn it, is to experience it on your own skin.

I cordially invite you for Skype sessions with me or personal sessions in my therapy studio in Zurich.

Aleksandra

When the boss doesn’t give you a raise

Have you ever heard about the Tiara Syndrome? It’s a special psychological term used to describe the belief that if you do everything properly, in your job, at home, etc. someone is going to appreciate it and put a crown on your head. 

Sheryl Sandberg cited “The Tiara Syndrome” in her book “Lean in”.

You sit quietly, you do your job the best you can and you think your boss is going to notice that and he will give you a pay raise. Usually, nothing like this happens.

Sounds familiar? 

So often you heard “sit quiet and do your job and they will notice you”. That’s what I’ve heard. So you sit, work long hours and wait and wait and expect that your time for ‘crowning’ will come. But it never comes. No raise, no good words from the boss but an increasing frustration. 

So many working women struggle with the Tiara Syndrome. 

  • What to do if you notice that your work is not appreciated though you deliver your best? 
  • What to do if you got stuck in your career being on the same junior position for 5 years? 

Take your fate in your own hands. Leave the job. Don’t wait for the crown, because you can wait forever. You know you deserve more. Take action to get it. Even if this will mean changing your job. Anyways, you wouldn’t regret such a job with no prospects, would you?

Let’s talk about relationships now. I think Tiara Syndrome can be perfectly illustrated on the example of love relationships.

Sandra met John at a common friends’ party. They exchanged the phone numbers and smiled at each other with a sparkle in the eye. She liked him a lot. “Finally!” she thought. “The man of my dreams”. John’s attitude was a bit different. He said to his best friend: “she’s cool. Let’s see what will come out of that”. What happened next?

They met three times in a cafe, in a park, in a restaurant. Then, Sandra took the initiative and invited him over to her place for dinner. She prepared a menu of 3 dishes plus the dessert and excellent red wine. She put her make up on, the best dress from her closet and thought that this was it. This was the moment she was waiting for. She expected that the guy will be head over heels in love with her. 

Was he? Nope. Do you know why?

The man was no longer interested because Sandra gave herself on a plate. She was too much focused on herself and on giving a lot, and she didn’t ask herself “What is he giving me?” 

The same goes for relationships and love. We do an excellent job, looking good, and giving our hearts on a plate to a man. Especially we, women. 

We fail to see and analyze if the man appreciates us and gives us his masculine energy in exchange for our feminine. We wait and hope the guy is going to love us and pamper us later on, but we don’t see the signals saying that we gave too many cookies and fed him too much. Our cookie bakery gets closed, and we finally see what mistakes we did.

What to do about that? 

Start appreciating yourself. Give, but also take. Ask for more and if someone says he cannot give it to you – leave. Don’t be afraid to ask your boss for what you deserve. When it doesn’t function, you know what to do, right?

Overplanned in your free time? About leisure stress.

Dominic worked a lot. After work he hit the local gym, worked out, picked some chicken sandwich with guacamole from the supermarket, hurrying up because in Switzerland they close at 21:00. His time after working hours was all planned well in advance. 

Mondays pushing at the gym. Tuesdays learning German at the Sprachschule. Wednesdays playing squash with his friend. Thursdays going out for dates in fancy bars and restaurants. Fridays packing his bags and departing for a weekend trip.

Sounds familiar?

 You might ask: “But what is so strange or inappropriate about it?!”

Leisure stress plantation of creativity

Nothing. But Dominic’s feelings were far from pleasant. He was constantly stressed. He needed to pack the day before, depending on which activity he will pursue on a given day. Then, traffic on the road and stress if he will make it for the date. Busy every day, all the time. After 6 months he took psychological help because he couldn’t sleep, he couldn’t focus and he was constantly exhausted. 

Each one of us has free time and it is our decision what we do about it and how we shape it. However, free time means something different for us. 

Martha: “Free time is the time I have when I don’t need to be at work”.

Kevin: “I understand free time as the time when I don’t need to do anything, even cooking or cleaning”.

Jacob: “Free time does not exist. There is always something to do”.

What’s your definition of free time? Why certain people experience leisure time stress? Let me give you two examples of free time stress.

1. TOO MUCH ACTION

 Like Dominic, you are planned the whole week with different types of activities. You think you can do it, but the weekend comes and you’re dead from tiredness. 

2. TO LITTLE ACTION

You don’t plan your free time and when it comes, you are frightened and stressed about “but what will I do?”.

What to do to avoid leisure stress?

  • Don’t take too much on your shoulders

Let your body relax and recover. You don’t need to hit the gym every day after work.

  • Learn to rest.

Let go. Lay in bed with a book. Sleep. The world will not collapse if you rest in quiet.

  • Be gentle with yourself. 

You are not a machine but an intricate biological computer. You need TIME for everything. It also relates to resting. 

  • Find good ways to relax

Switch off your computer and phone, go out to a forest or a park. Breathe fresh air. Sometimes a change like this can bring the awakening and change.

With love,

Aleksandra