Mom's The Word: On Revolutionary Mother-Daughter "Communicating"

Illustration for article titled Mom's The Word: On Revolutionary Mother-Daughter "Communicating"

"Best friend or enemy?" asks an NBC piece on mothers and daughters. Um, neither? Yesterday, we learned that moms and daughters are competing for hotness props. No wonder "mother-daughter communication" is a potential goldmine:

Side by Side: The Revolutionary Mother-Daughter Program for Conflict-Free Communication is a new book, by Dr. Charles Sophy, that seeks to address one of the fundamental conflicts of human existence. I'm guessing it won't solve it. But the good doctor seeks, he says, to aid warring families in communication. Here's his approach, in the proverbial nutshell:

Most moms, due to fear or lack of resources, feel as if there is nothing they can do to improve their relationship with their daughters. Yet there is a technique you can use that draws on resources you already possess. With this technique, I have been able to make a difference in the lives of thousands of mothers and daughters. I call it the Chair Strategy. This simple and effective mom-driven tactic begins with a visual image of the position of two chairs. Imagine that these chairs represent the way you and your daughter are communicating. Are they situated back-to-back, with the two of you in a deadlock, unable to see each other's point of view? Are the chairs face-to-face, enabling each of you to share respectfully opposing viewpoints? Or are the chairs side-by-side, with the two of you working collaboratively to sustain your relationship? The answer to this question will enable you and your daughter to begin to understand how your communication efforts are succeeding or failing. The Chair Strategy will provide you with insight and tools to change the dynamic between the two of you, to more effectively resolve the conflicts that occur, and to emerge with an even stronger bond.


For the average mother-daughter contretemps, sure, the Chair Strategy probably can't hurt. But when we're inundated with stories of mothers literally competing with their daughters in the hotness stakes (held up, if not an exemplar, certainly a commonplace enough mode of behavior that it warrants the dubious rewards of notoriety) the worry becomes that both mother and daughter will instead straddle said chairs and do a lascivious shimmy - in total accord.

Improving The Mother-Daughter Relationship [NBC]
Related: Drew Barrymore Talks Mother Daughter Relationships [Babble]


Vivelafat is the Quizatez Haderach

My mother and I didn't really start to get along until about a year before her suicide ( I was 23, she was 43). I think a lot of what goes into having a good relationship with your mother is maturity. Once I realized my mother was fragile human being, not the demigod or immovable authoritarian I began to see her reactions and actions within the world around her in a different light. I think maturity did that.

Thankfully, I had at least a year of having her as my best friend. My sister (who was 18 when my mom died) didn't even get that, and it breaks my heart for her.