What role do you play in your mother daughter conflict?

By Val Boyko • November 10th, 2010

I was looking out some information on conflict resolution and came across the drama triangle. If you haven’t come across it, it’s pretty interesting stuff!
We normally think of mother daughter conflict in terms of two adversaries (me vs you). In fact, wherever there is conflict there is the drama triangle of victim, hero and villain. Image from Hitchcock's Rebecca

“If you see yourself as a victim or a hero, then you automatically create a villain and conflict. When you see someone as a villain, they in turn will feel victimized by you – and see you as the villain. Behaviors you see as self defense become attacks in their minds. And the walls of judgment and justification are buttressed on both sides.”

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By susan master on November 10th, 2010 at 10:16 pm

What a fascinating article! As a child, I assumed he victim role every time I was disappointed by my mother.
As an adult, I “set her up” to disappoint me time and time again. There is a comfort in playing the victim…as well as pain. It seems to me that self-righteousness is a child’s only defense against bad feelings. The sense of self seesaws between ” I deserve better” and “I don’t deserve to get my needs met”. As children, we need these strategies to survive.
As adults, we can choose more effective ways to deal with the people in our lives who often get
stuck with the bill that our mothers (and fathers)
didn’t pay.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts Susan – there’s so much here! I added a comment yesterday but it seems to have gone into cyberspace…. so here is goes again!

It’s natural for us to be victims as children. We are little people who rely on big people for everything. If we stand up for ourselves we risk losing everything that makes us safe, so we find a way to cope.
As victims we get attention, sympathy and comfort from others. When we have no power it makes sense….. but its’ so easy to we forget that as adults we have power. It becomes automatic to resort to the behaviors that have worked in the past.

The down side is that we are continuing to give our power away to the other person, and we can’t not break away from the drama triangle.

Really nice post,thank you

Thanks Ron!

Thank you for your comments.

Thanks for the advice.

 

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