Tangled: The Classic Mother Wound
So, let the records show my inkwell was officially dry; I had started my journey and concluded it in neat little packages with pink bows on top. Until I received several requests in line with movies to explore. Let the records show, I am a die hard Marvel fan so Marvel Movies are off the bandwagon; they are perfect and without fault! #That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
Shoutout to Lynne for requesting Tangled: The Classic Mother Wound. This one is for you love! The mother wound is created when a maternal figure is not emotionally attuned to the needs of their child. Tangled illustrates this perfectly. Just to give context, Rapunzel has gold magical hair with healing properties and becomes the target of an old woman, Mother Gothel, who steals her in a bid to gain eternal youth.
Mother Gothel is a self-centered parent showing classic traits of narcissism. Additionally the pseudo relationship she fosters with Rapunzel displays all the classic signs of the mother wound. Although Mother Gothel provides for Rapunzel’s physical needs she fails to nurture her emotionally or show her love. She dismisses her needs as outrageous requests, making Rapunzel doubt herself, invalidating her needs.
Mother Gothel is also extremely critical of Rapunzel, playfully shaming her with a, “You’re getting rather chubby.” Additionally, she scolds Rapunzel for taking too long to lift her into the tower. Now, keep in mind there is an intricate system of pulleys and levers that transform Rapunzel’s hair into an elevator of sorts (Watch the movie if this is confusing.) In essence, it’s a feat of strength and sheer will to get Mother Gothel up so any criticism whatsoever is unwarranted!
Mother Gothel in all her narcissistic gore, literally sucks the life out of her victim. Rapunzel’s golden locks symbolize her youth, rejuvenation and life force something Mother Gothel covets and devours. In the same way, narcissistic mothers will expect you to parent them, and the reversal of roles will see you entering the marriage dynamic. Essentially, they will turn to you to be their partner in the ways they will expect emotional support from you.
What is the result of the mother wound you ask? Let’s see, shall we? Rapunzel exhibits an inability to self soothe as well as low self-esteem. She fails to calm her inner turmoil and restriction, seeking external alternatives, namely the floating lights. They are in actual fact sky lanterns but as she has never explored the outside world she can only describe them as floating lights. The sky lanterns symbolize the many ways we will choose to self soothe when we have the mother wound; self mutilation, alcohol, drugs; anything that makes us feel high. The most crippling result of the mother wound is the inability to form lasting relationships & trust people. Narcissistic parents will ensure you are alienated & your sole purpose is to be their battery. They convince you the big bad world is out to get you and that they are your only haven. Mother Gothel sings this beautifully in “Mother Knows Best.”
Can boys experience the mother wound? Yes, yes they can. The only reason it is mainly characterized as a mother-daughter phenomenon is because today’s daughters are tomorrow’s mothers and will inevitably perpetuate the mother wound unless they choose otherwise. It’s a conundrum that tears you apart; do you seek to find your voice and unique identity at the expense of your mother’s “love?” or do you cover in her shadow, drowning in the depths of her smothering. (Isn’t it funny how you can’t spell smother without mother?)
So how do we heal the mother wound? The first step is to acknowledge it. The devil you know is the devil you can defeat. Secondly, nurture forgiveness. Past trauma and other extenuating circumstances are the sources of these damaging traits, so forgive your parents because they could not give you what they themselves had never received. You have the power to break the cycle and re-parent yourself; set systems and guidelines that will become your code of conduct and help you model better, more positive patterns. The point is, you are not your past and you can recreate yourself, building a new, stronger version of yourself from the pieces of self scattered around you. You are limitless; pure creation in motion!
This has been the Musing of a Whimsical Mind. To learn more about this topic follow this link https://www.healthline.com/health/mother-wound#takeaway
In an hour, Sunflower!