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Healing the Mother Wound by Re-mothering Yourself

A mum holding a child

As a trauma-informed therapist, I often see clients struggling with the impacts of an impaired mother-child relationship, known as the “mother wound.” This wound stems from a lack of consistent emotional attunement and responsive care from your mother figure during childhood. The mother wound can persist into adulthood, undermining self-esteem and the ability to create healthy relationships.

Symptoms of the mother wound may include:

Toxic Relationships

Inability to develop and maintain healthy relationships with others. For example, allowing abusive treatment from others, feeling needy or unable to ask for and receive support.

Low self-worth and struggles with self-love

Never feeling good enough no matter what you do. Engaging in negative self-talk and criticism, self-sabotaging in work and in love and neglecting self-care.

Difficulty setting boundaries with others

Struggling to say no, express needs or set limits with others. For example, going along with things that make you uncomfortable to avoid conflict.

Caretaking and People-pleasing

Overextending yourself to care for others at the expense of your own needs. You may prioritise the needs and wants of others above their own, leading to feelings of exhaustion, resentment and even a loss of self-identity.

Seeking external validation excessively

Looking for constant approval, reassurance, praise from others to make up for the lack of maternal validation. For example, overdependence on likes and comments on social media.

Difficulty trusting others

Inability to rely on others' care and support due to childhood emotional neglect. For example, avoiding intimacy and pulling away from relationships.

Fear of abandonment

Extreme fear of being rejected or deserted by loved ones. For example, clinging behaviours or perceiving conflict as rejection.

Disconnection from your inner child

Feeling detached from your core needs, emotions, interests and spontaneity. For example, not knowing how to play, be vulnerable or self-express.

Emotional dysregulation

Difficulty coping with strong emotions skillfully due to a lack of secure attachment. For example, feeling frequently overwhelmed or having intense mood swings.

Anxiety, low mood and other mental health issues

Experiencing excessive worry, sadness and emotional volatility due to lack of secure attachment. For example, having panic attacks, suicidal thoughts or intense anger.


Perfectionism typically develops as a coping mechanism to gain acceptance, avoid criticism and reduce feelings of inadequacy and shame. In can manifest in a professional life as exceptional attention to detail and insistence on delivering flawless work.

The good news is that as an adult you have the power to heal your mother wound through a process called “remothering.” Remothering involves nurturing your inner child with the love, care and validation you needed but did not receive growing up. By re-mothering yourself, you can rewrite limiting beliefs, restore self-trust and cultivate secure attachment within.


What Does Remothering Look Like?

Remothering involves re-parenting yourself with compassion. Essentially, you become the loving mother figure you always needed. Remothering practices include:

  • Speaking gently, positively and encouragingly to yourself

  • Identifying your needs and taking steps to meet them

  • Setting healthy boundaries

  • Practising self-care through rest, healthy eating, exercise

  • Exploring your feelings through journaling, art or talking therapy

  • Spending time outdoors and in nature

  • Engaging your inner child through play, creativity, hobbies

  • Giving yourself permission to feel without judgement

  • Letting go of perfectionism and shame

  • Prioritising your well-being over productivity

Therapy can help you with the remothering process. First, we identify core wounds and negative self-beliefs formed in childhood. Then we nurture inner child healing through visualisation, letter writing, parts work and corrective emotional experiences. With consistency, remothering can help develop an internalised sense of safety, belonging and self-worth.


8 Steps to Heal Your Mother Wound

Here are some steps you can take to begin remothering yourself:

Explore your mother wound origins

Reflect on your relationship with your mother or mother figure. Notice any emotional neglect, criticism, enmeshment, control or abuse. Journal about your core wounds and negative self-beliefs adopted in childhood.

Release anger and resentment

Express righteous anger safely through therapy, support groups, journaling, art or exercise. Then practise empathy for your mother’s humanity and childhood wounds.

Connect with your inner child 

Close your eyes and visualise yourself as a child. Connect with innocence, playfulness and vulnerability. Imagine nurturing this child self as your own loving mother.

Challenge negative self-talk

When your inner critic is harsh, respond with empathy. Replace self-judgement with encouragement.

Set loving boundaries

Protect your inner child from further damage. Limit contact with emotionally unsafe people. Prioritise your needs unapologetically.

Practise mindful self-care

Tune into your emotions and meet your unmet needs. Do nurturing activities that light you up. Soothe and validate yourself through difficulty.

Find emotionally attuned support

Join a support group, class or find a therapist. Receive care from safe, nurturing people. Learn to give and receive healthy love.

Embrace growth and change

Remothering is a lifelong process. Over time, self-trust, resilience and belonging grow. Notice your expanding capacity for joy.


The mother wound is real but can be overcome. By re-mothering your inner child with the consistent love you deserve, you can transform old wounds into sources of growth. With compassionate support and a commitment to inner child healing, becoming your own loving mother and evolving into your highest self is within reach.

Seek support from a mental health specialist or counselling service to guide you on your healing journey.

Love & light,


Hypnotherapist and counsellor

Founder of Holistic Transformative Therapy

Leeds, Harrogate, York

Get in touch

mobile: 07849 580021

Instagram: @holistictransformativetherapy

Facebook: Holistic Transformative Therapy


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