Mother Enmeshed Men: Why Would a Mother Enmeshed Man Have Trouble Identifying His Needs And Feelings?
Even though a man will have his own needs and feelings, he could generally be out of touch with what is taking place within him. These parts, along with his desires and preferences, will be connected to his true self.
Thus, if he is out of touch with what is going on within him and is disconnected from his essence as a result, it is not going to be possible for him to live a life that is deeply fulfilling. Still, this doesn’t mean that he will be able to join the dots, so to speak and to do something about this.
The reason for this is that he could be accustomed to living in this way, which will mean that he won’t be able to see what is actually going on. It might not even occur to him that he is out of touch with himself.
But, if he has been this way for a very long time, why would he be aware of what is going on? Now, it could be said that as he will pay a price by living in this way, he should be able to see what is going on.
This sounds accurate; however, what it wouldn’t take into account is how his ego-mind will block out what is going on. To ensure that he continues to behave in the same way, a way that is likely to feel comfortable, his ego-mind will stop him from coming into contact with his painful feelings and any information that might allow him to change his life.
If this is what feels comfortable, it will mean that it is what is associated as what is familiar and therefore, what is safe. At the core of his being, then, he will believe that he needs to neglect himself to survive.
How Does This Look?
He will have the need to focus on other people’s needs and to do what they want and what he thinks they want. Like a lighthouse that shines a light brightly on what is going on outside and only has a small light on inside, he will be completely out of balance.
In general, he could create the impression that he is happy and even that he has it all together, but this will be a facade. Behind the mask that he represents to the world is likely to be someone who is deeply unhappy and feels empty.
A lot of his energy and time could be spent doing things for his mother, with her seeing him as more like her parent than her son. So, if he is not working or being there for someone else, for instance, he will be there for her.
His mother could feel entitled to her sons support and expect him to be there for her. Due to what she believes and how she behaves, it is unlikely that she will encourage him to connect with his true self and to live his own life.
What could shake things up, though, is if he was to start a relationship. This could be the first time in his life that he will realise that he is out of touch with his needs and feelings.
Ultimately, the woman will want to connect to who he really is, and, for this to happen, he will need to be connected to his true self. If he continues to live on the surface of himself and to play a role, this won’t take place.
She could often ask him how he feels and he could struggle to explain what is going on for him. When it comes to his needs, he could feel compelled to please her and to do what she wants.
This will make it hard for her to feel connected to him and vice versa, and she could feel more like his mother, than his partner and he could soon see that he is too focused on her needs. At this point, he could wonder what is going on; why he has such a poor connection with himself and why he is so focused on other people, his mother in particular.
A Natural Outcome
How his mother treats him now is likely to be a continuation of how she treated him very early on. During his formative years, she will have probably used him to fulfil some of her adult and unmet childhood needs.
To survive, he would have had to disconnect from his true self - his needs, feelings, desires, and preferences - and to focus solely on his mother's needs. His early experiences would have also traumatised him, which would have also played a part in why he is disconnected from himself – his body.
A Big Risk
If he did express himself, he may have been punished and/or abandoned. He would have come to see that it was far too dangerous for him to be in touch with himself and to express who he was.
It would have been clear that the safest thing was for him to focus on his mother's needs and to do what she wanted. Being out of touch with his needs would have caused him to suffer but it would have been even worse if he was in touch with them and had the face the pain of not having them met.
The Same Story
Many, many years will have passed but he still won’t feel safe enough to be in touch with himself and to express who he is. Thanks to the defence mechanism known as transference, he will see his partner and other people in the same way that he saw his mother.
In other words, a big part of him won’t be able to see that these people are not his mother and that this stage of his life is over - he survived. Once he can see that it’s over, he will gradually be able to accept that it is safe for him to change.
If a man can relate to this and he is ready to change his life, he may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.