Cold Mother Syndrome
Education Parenting

Cold Mother Syndrome and How To Deal With Her

Every newborn baby has an essence of beauty and the power to attract anyone around them. However, mothers who are emotionally absent or facing cold mother syndrome will never be able to see the beauty and are impotent to return the child’s affection.

A good mother is a mirror image of the perfect home. Although, not every child is born with the luck to have a good mother. The reasons are above and beyond understanding the cause of cold mother syndrome.

Here we will discuss the primary causes of the syndrome, its effects on a child, and how you can heal from the mother’s wounds. Let’s begin with the guide without any further due.


Table of Content


What Is Cold Mother Syndrome?

Cold mother syndrome is a mother wound in which a mother cannot deal with her child’s emotions. Such mothers are physically present to fulfil the financial and living needs of the child. But fail to provide the essence of love, safety & security, and a sense of belonging.

The mother wound isn’t a disease but a mental or psychological illness that most women develop from childhood traumas and lousy home life. Other women form mother wounds after they receive exposure to motherhood either voluntarily or forcefully.

To understand the psychological suffering in a mother-child relationship, let’s see why women are evolving as emotionally absent mothers.


What Causes Cold Mother Syndrome?

It is a birth instinct that we try to study our parents and their behaviour towards different things, especially towards us. A child who lives with an emotionally cold mother always wonders what makes her mother act like that.

That’s why Jasmin Lee Cori, a psychotherapist, has given the primary reason that makes a woman an emotionally unavailable mother. The following is the list of reasons

  • According to Cori, a mother had grieved for an extended period. It consumed all of her energy and, as a result, developed emotional resistance.
  • She had faced depression, anxiety, or any other mental instability. Also making her an alcoholic or drug addict.
  • She is worn out and exhausted from working day and night to bring the “roof” over her head. That’s taking all of her energy and even causing a physical illness.
  • She wasn’t prepared or wanted to be a mother. Mothering wasn’t her choice, and that’s causing a pang of guilt in her. To overcome her guilt, she chooses to neglect everything around her.
  • She got busy getting things that she wanted for herself. It includes her struggle to develop her career, being busy with school or working two or more jobs. Such circumstances have made her a narcissist and self-centric.
  • She didn’t adopt her role as a homemaker. Taking care of too many children and always in between household chores causes her to question her significance in her life.
  • She got an ill person in the family and has cared for that person for many years (e.g., an ill husband, parent, or parents-in-law). It made her unemotional and cold towards the other family members (i.e., children)
  • She is afraid to love and to get hurt by that person (triggering something terrible from her childhood).
  • Others instruct her not to give more to her children, to save them from spoiling.

These are the primary reasons that make women emotionally detached from their children. Although not all women need to have all of these reasons, one reason can cause this syndrome. However, the reason might differ from woman to woman and is challenging to track down in general.

However, it doesn’t matter what makes a mother emotionally absent because it leaves the same negative effect on every child. Let’s see how an absent mother can reverse the child’s future.

Negative Effects of an Emotionally Cold Mother Syndrome on a Child?

Negative Effects Of An Emotionally Absent Mother

We all have heard about maternal significance and blessing. But what will happen to the child if the mother blocks her blessing? The child will suffer psychologically and become unable to develop social skills.

Doubting Character

Emotionally unavailable mothers make a child think that they are alone and isolated even when mothers are physically present. Such kind of isolation causes “doubting character” in the child. The child starts doubting the credibility of their idea and chooses to remain silent. That results in an extremely introverted personality. In other words, a child becomes anti-social.

Emotional Instability

Cold mother syndrome causes emotional instability in the child. The child will be seen as a confused soul all the time. Even the child becomes unable to express anger, sadness, or happiness. A study shows that some kids even develop anxiety at a young age as the result of bad parenting.

Relationship Issues

If the child didn’t heal from the mother’s wounds, then there are chances that a child might face relationship issues in later life. It includes trust issues, caring dilemmas, dependency, and relationship conflicts.

Victim – Due To Low Self-Esteem

As we have discussed above, refrigerator mother syndrome causes a lack of confidence in the child. This will give birth to low self-esteem and make a child impotent to stand up for themselves. Therefore, emotionally absent mothers’ children become the victims in the schools.

Bully – To Save The Image

Commonly, children of unemotional mothers become victims in society. Despite that, some kids choose “bullying” as a defence mechanism and block all sources of love and hate. It helps them save their self-image but influences the kid’s personality.


Emotionally Unavailable Mother- Recovery

Video Credits: Kati Morton


How to deal with an Emotionally Cold Mother?

How to deal with an emotionally absent mother

Truth must be told to you. You cannot do much as a child with your living suffering and dealing with an emotionally absent mother. Cold mother syndrome is a psychological or mental illness that is difficult to deal with and cure by any medicine or therapy.

Refrigerator mother syndrome is also similar to Cold mother syndrome as both define the women as unemotional and unloving to kids. Besides that, both can cause autism in youngsters if kids get neglected by their mothers for a long time.

Some scholars claim that refrigerator mother syndrome isn’t even treatable if the mother’s traits become part of her personality. In this case, you have to heal yourself from the mother’s wound with self-care. Here are the steps that you can take to deal with your emotionally absent mother.

Understand Your Emotions

Many people will give you different methods and meditations to heal from the mother’s wound. But none will tell you the primary block in your life that you need to remove, which is “Understanding your emotions.”

If you have been living with a woman who has given birth to you but also suffering from cold mother syndrome, then there are chances that you are also consuming her traits and hiding your emotions.

It is prevalent for children to copy and imitate their parents’ personalities. So, to save yourself from becoming an emotionally absent mother, you must acknowledge your emotions.

Show love, respect, and concern on different matters to recover from the harmful effects of refrigerator mother syndrome. Moreover, it would help if you also showed your pain and suffering from the neglect of your mother.

Some children don’t even acknowledge the neglect they received from their mothers. That’s how they start hiding their genuine emotions. This can lead you to a psychologically unbalanced life. That’s why you must have to heal from the mother’s wound by understanding your true emotions.

Stand With Your Anger 

It is very common that we get enraged towards our mothers if they neglect us or stop showing feelings towards us. Their behavior, attitude, and coldness affect us and cause madness in us. Some experts say that a child shouldn’t feel angry towards the mother because it will transform the anger into resentment and can cause more harm to the naive mind of the child.

On the other hand, Jasmin Lee Cori suggested that “you”, as a child, must show your anger towards the pain you received from your mother due to her neglect.

According to her, you cannot heal your wounded inner child until or unless you allow yourself to become angry. It might sound dangerous to you but I think you cannot accomplish something without experiencing falls.

For that purpose, you have to feel angry (that’s how you will learn about your emotions) and even expose your anger or broken wings to your mother. Tell her how much pain she has given you, and give sound to your voice.

That will be your first step towards healing. After you pass the anger phase, you will learn that you are self-sufficient and can make a strong self-image without any holes.

Fight For the Future

Let me be honest with you. There are only two options ahead of you. Either forget your past for your future or live with those deeper childhood scars.

It might sound harsh to you. But you must forget your past and “get together” before it is too late. You must be wondering why it will become too late for you to heal from your mother’s wounds.

As I have discussed above long-term grieving can cause cold mother syndrome. That’s why you must leave your past and think about your future. There isn’t any doubt that you will get love, care, and connection from your friends, spouse, grandparents, or in-laws. The miracles will only come to your life if you are psychologically stable. Hence, you need to leave your past.

Consult from the Divine Mother

You indeed need a consultation to heal from the mother’s wounds. But, before you start your consultation with other people, you can take help from the Divine Mother.

A study shows that the image of the Divine Mother helps a child to remove the negativity of the emotionally unavailable mother. Simply put, you can share your thoughts loud and clear with a traditional and good Divine Mother.

You can track down your Divine Mother by navigating the roots of your religion. For instance, in Christianity, Mother Mary is an archetype image of the perfect mother who knows your pain and feelings.

Contacting her (Imagining her near you) will help you to release the negativity of your mother, and you will form a new image of a good mother.

Therefore, if you are a victim of an absent mother, then take consultation from the Divine Mother and keep your sanity in check.

Give Yourself A Self-Mother

You don’t have to wait for someone to come and rescue your feelings. You have to be a self-mother to deal with an absent mother. It might seem like too much, but this is the only way that you can heal from the undermothered phase.

For instance, your mother forgets to celebrate your birthday, acknowledge your good grades or hug you. In such scenarios, give yourself a treat, and celebrate those events you want to celebrate. Click photos and make an album, an album that has good memories.

These memories will restore your broken image and save you from depression the loneliness. Therefore, always be there for “Yourself” and give yourself a “self-mother” to heal from the mother’s wound.


The practical implantations are essential to recovering from the mother’s wound. Still, to completely cure this, you need a tool that barricades the negativity of the cold mother syndrome.

Cori has explained that journaling is the best tool a child can use to restore their self-image and become empowered to control the future. The write-up might break you into tears. However, it will save you from long-term grieving, anxiety, loneliness, and depression.

Write everything that hurts you. It includes the disappointment that you receive from your mother, the pain from her extreme neglect, and everything.

The write-up will lower your stress and emotional instability. It is more like you’re respecting your journal by telling it your secret pains, and it will show care by listing you silently. Hence, this is the best tool to heal the mother’s wounds without losing anything.


Wrapping Up 

In cold mother syndrome, women have zero tolerance for emotions. They neither express their feelings nor want to see your emotions. Sometimes, when a child shows the desire for love and care, it triggers the traumatic memory of the mother. As a result, they push away the child, and that causes a shock in the child.

These shocks can cause low self-esteem, extremely introverted personality, emotional neediness, and destructive relationships. Hence, you need to mend your mother’s wounds and keep yourself with your sanity for a better future.



Written by: Maryam
BA Early Childhood Education with Psychology


  • Cruz July 23, 2023

    Loved this article. ????????????????????????????❤️

    • Maryam October 16, 2023

      Thank you!

    • Laura Wood May 2, 2024

      This article was very good and explained how ive been feeling since childhood, im still haunted with it

      • Maryam May 17, 2024

        Thank you. Let us know if you like to speak to one of our consultants.

        Takecare and lots of love!

  • Bambi July 25, 2023

    I am so worried and I never want to give up on any situation even if it seems like it’s to late to even begin. I feel lost in this world right now so much has happened. I have two great sons Ecohe and Juki and they are native American and just really awesome. I should have thought long and hard on everything that was happening and planned better. Like so much has happened for the negative part of the situation but I think if I wanted to make a turn around I could maybe do it. Like atghe time I was in love and because of the heritage of being Native American I thought that everything was perfect and peachy keen. Little did I know to understand what’s that it wasn’t peachy keen it was far from but I wasn’t going to realize this until much later and my story Is heart breaking. I’m not sure what the outcome will be but I hope the lord Jesus has mercy in me because I am truly sorry that it took this long to realize to try to heal the trauma. So the past isn’t fair and bad things happen to good people and we do not understand why. Also relationships can turn toxic quickly and people can stay in toxic relationships because they feel normal but they are so far from normal.
    So yeah it’s going to take a lot of work and sacrifice to try to correct patterns that have spiraled out of control and became your not so normal life.
    It’s hard to realize that it’s up to me to change the existence as we know it.
    I wonder if it will or idk all I knoq is that dcfs wants to take my native American kids and that’s it. Due to domestic violence and break ups my life took a battering and I’m just barley coming out of it all. But I truly hope I can for my son’s .

    • Maryam October 16, 2023

      I can sense that you’ve been through a lot, and it takes great strength to reflect on your life and want to make positive changes. Remember, recognizing the need for change is a crucial first step. It’s never too late to work towards healing and creating a better environment for your sons. Seek support from professionals, friends, or support groups who can help you navigate this challenging journey. Keep your faith and determination strong, and with time and effort, positive change is possible. Your love for your sons and your willingness to make things better are powerful motivators for transformation. Wishing you all the best on this path of healing and recovery.

  • Lauren July 28, 2023

    Please help me heal so I don’t ruin my children. I feel like I already have and I’m devastated. Please tell me I can reverse the harm I have already caused to my 3 year old.

    • Maryam October 16, 2023

      I can hear how much you care about your children, and that’s a positive sign in itself. It’s never too late to make positive changes and create a nurturing environment for your child. Seek support and guidance from professionals, like therapists or counselors, who can help you navigate this journey of healing and rebuilding. Remember that as a parent, your love and commitment are powerful forces that can lead to positive changes in your child’s life. It may take time, but with the right support, you can work towards providing a loving and secure environment for your child to thrive in. You’re not alone in this, and there is hope for a brighter future.

  • tawd August 19, 2023

    as a male, this hits me hard! thank you for your time

  • Rebecca Hill October 1, 2023

    Interesting. I now know why I’m insecure, and have no self-esteem. In my many failed relationships I was emotionally needy. They all became abusive towards me. I did launch okay. I detached from her coldness and have good relationships with my children. I made self assured, productive children who are successful. They have normal healthy relationships, families of their own and successful relationships. Unfortunately I was taken by someone who left me without a penny for all I earned in life, as a successful RN. I did pray and journal to no avail. I’m stuck back with my cold mother literally. It’s made me a nervous wreck! Once again I’m lost.
    B Hill RN

    • Maryam October 16, 2023

      I’m really sorry to hear about the challenges you’ve been facing, and it sounds like you’ve been through a lot. It’s great to hear that you’ve been able to build healthy relationships with your children, and they’ve turned out to be successful individuals with strong connections. Remember, it’s never too late to find your own path to happiness and fulfillment. Stay strong, and keep believing in yourself. You have the strength to overcome this difficult situation, just as you’ve faced other challenges in the past. And know that there is always hope for a better tomorrow.

  • Lana November 4, 2023

    Great article 🙏

  • Margaret Chapman December 4, 2023

    Thanks. I appreciate the article
    My cold mother got away with everything.
    Left me fighting for life.
    She admited she just wasn’t emotional
    and it was hard on us as kids.
    But it was much more than that.
    It’s all just so hard, I don’t miss her at all.
    And I thought of tossing a cup of coffee at her. My biggest regret is that I didn’t

  • Nancy December 15, 2023

    Something that needs to be mentioned is the damage these cold mothers do to the relationships between their children. They really don’t care if they get along or not…. just as long as they all don’t bother her with their ‘silly’ little feelings. I’m the oldest of four and each and every one of us has been seriously hurt, we do not trust each other, we do not share feeling with each other, we do not risk sharing our confidences with each other. Things have been this way for decades, I’ve just turned 70 and it’s all the same way. So instead of having siblings that might provide each other with some measure of comfort, they are also cold and so very damaged. Out of four of us only one had a child, just one.. I think that speaks to how much fun our cold mother made child rearing look like to us.

    • Maryam December 16, 2023

      I’m truly sorry to hear about the pain and difficulties you’ve experienced in your family. It’s evident that the impact of a cold and distant mother can have long-lasting effects on the relationships among siblings. The emotional distance and lack of support can indeed create a lasting impact on trust and openness.

      It’s commendable that you’re able to reflect on these challenges and express your feelings. If you and your siblings are open to it, seeking professional help, such as family therapy, could provide a safe space to address these issues and work towards healing. It’s never too late to explore ways to improve communication and understanding within a family.

  • rachel January 27, 2024

    this syndrome is new to me but fit my daughter in law to a tee thats why i have custody of grandkids found this very interesting

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