When I was 19, I went to Europe with 2 girlfriends for 9 1/2 weeks. On the train in France, I was listening to Sinead O’Connor for the first time on my walkman (yes, I am that old) and I was deeply moved by just how incredible she was. Everyone had told me she was amazing, but I hadn’t checked her out yet because I thought if she was that great, I would have discovered her myself. I had a similar experience with The Mother Daughter Project.
My friend eagerly told me about the book by SuEllen Hamkins, MD and Renee Schultz, MA. The movement had been a game changer for my friend and she had encouraged me to join a chapter, and rather than be appreciative of the suggestion, I thought, “I don’t need a formula for connection with my daughter. My mother had women friends who took me under their wing and I am still friends with them. I was connected to my parents during my teen years. My daughter will be fine.”
But, then, I read the book. WOW!! This book has the potential to revolutionize our relationship to our daughter’s adolescence and ensure a substantially positive experience of this transformational time in their lives.
From the website:
“We are a community of women and girls dedicated to discovering and sharing ways mothers and daughters can stay close and thrive together through adolescence and beyond. We discovered the simple but revolutionary idea that by joining together in small groups, ordinary mothers and daughters can thrive by facing the challenges of adolescence together. Mothers and daughters love staying close and having fun while taking on the hottest issues girls and women face.”
The Mother Daughter Project resonates on every level. I am now planning to start or join a local group and give my first born daughter this experience. The premise of the book is that you don’t have to expect or encourage a separation from your adolescent daughter; you can be connected through this tumultuous time in their youth, while still cultivating a healthy space for individuation. Moreover, at the heart of this book is the conviction and experience of such connection; that when built upon before adolescence and encouraged through out it, the power of the mother-daughter community can actually prevent against STDs, teen pregnancy, anorexia, depression, self-injury, and promiscuous behavior; all things facing our youth today.
My daughter is 7 and a 1/2. I told her about my plans last night. Joy, innocence and glimmers of her future were equally displayed on her face.
Mothers of Daughters, I encourage you to check out this book, website and the supporting information. http://www.themother-daughterproject.com. There is an outline of how to create and sustain the Mother-Daughter Group structure with other mothers and daughters before adolescence and through their teenage years. This undertaking is free; it costs the dear price of commitment, time and energy, and the humility to work collaboratively, and through our own triggers with womanhood and motherhood.
About Jessica Williams
Jessica Williams created L.O.V.E. Parenting with a series of techniques for effective communication, deepened connection and more joy in parenting and life. Jessica is also the creator of www.UltimateParentingCourse.com with the best of today’s progressive parenting experts together in one program. Jessica is a featured expert internationally on both Mothering.com’s Ask An Expert and the upcoming www.KidsInTheHouse.com. Jessica is a regular contributor to Mothering Magazine’s All Things Mothering, LA Parent Magazine, LA Mom Magazine & DailyBuzzMoms. She has been interviewed on television and radio and taught workshops at family wellness centers, schools and doctor’s offices. Her BirthKit has helped women have a transformational & empowering birth. Jessica maintains a private coaching practice in her native Los Angeles where she lives with her husband and their three children. “Truly amazing woman. I love her advice.”—Carrie-Anne Moss. “All you have shared has helped tremendously.”—Lisa Bonet. “I am experiencing nothing short of a miracle thanks to your laser beam approach.” –Andrea Bendewald.