The Mother Factor


The Mother Factor: How Your Mother's Emotional Legacy Impacts Your Life
by Stephan B. Poulter, PhD



Whether we acknowledge it or not, our mothers leave an indelible impression on the persons we become. Our ability to function emotionally in relationships — both personal and professional — is based on our mothers’ deep influence.

In a book full of insights and wisdom based on a career of helping others, acclaimed psychologist Stephan B. Poulter shows how the mother factor can work either for or against us. The key to allowing this important legacy to work for us, says Dr. Poulter, depends on understanding our mother’s pervasive influence on our life. He shows that the way we connect emotionally in adult relationships is based on the “style” of our mothers.

Dr. Poulter defines the five major styles of mothering as:

  • The Perfectionist Mother — whose family must look perfect in every way
  • The Unpredictable Mother — whose ups and downs can create lifelong anxiety and depression in her son or daughter
  • The “Me First” Mother — whose children come second or last
  • The “Best Friend” Mother — who’s now in vogue but can wreak havoc
  • The Complete Mother — who provides guidance and shows compassion to her child

Although most mothers are a combination of the above, most fit more into one category more than the others. Even though as adults, we tend to dismiss our past as the past, we do so at risk to ourselves. Only by understanding how our mother’s legacy affects us today can we transcend the mysterious anger, anxiety, depression, and shame that we feel, and achieve the kind of relationships we deserve.

Dr. Poulter demonstrates how the internalized “rulebook” we inherit from our mothers is a very powerful force. These unspoken rules govern work, relationships, emotions, separation, and independence. Unless we become aware of the rules that guide our behavior, thoughts, and beliefs, we won’t have the ability to make our own choices.

This enlightening book will help readers connect with their past to correct self-defeating behaviors, reach their full emotional potentials, and live happier, more fulfilling lives.

Stephan B. Poulter, PhD (Los Angeles, CA), is the author of three previous books including The Father Factor, which was praised by Newsweek, Publishers Weekly, and other publications, and received widespread attention on Good Morning America, CNN, MSNBC, and other media outlets. He has practiced as a clinical psychologist specializing in family relationships for twenty-four years. Dr. Poulter lectures widely and appears regularly on radio talk shows and news programs.