Mom is Strict & Controlling; I Feel Lonely

09 August, 2019
Q As-Salamu 'Alaikum. I'm a 14 years old girl. Since I was 5 until 11, I had a rough childhood. I was more close to my father and I never liked mom. She was so strict and controlling. She never let me out of the house alone except for going to school. She never bought me things I loved because she thought she would spoil me. I understood that, but sometimes she got to the point where she started interfering with the color of the clothes I chose and the way I should style my hair.

I never had a say about my things and I had zero privacy which led me to fight with her and eventually led her to verbally and physically assault me.

She doesn't allow friends to visit me, so I used to play, draw and learn alone. I laughed at my own jokes and talked to my dolls and comforted myself when I cried and I would just play with my laptop in my room. Since I was 11 until today, I’ve lost interest in everything. I don't like playing. I don't like talking to people. I have no interest in jewelry, going out, outfits, getting the last brand of phones or laptops, traveling, etc. I just don't feel the need to do anything. Even if I did I just don't feel excited or happy. I just want to be alone in a room with my laptop. I don't feel happiness or excitement at all. I rarely smile.

I minimized conversation with my mom and I just "go with the flow", so she doesn't physically hurt me anymore. She's not bad sometimes, she can be affectionate, but most of the time she isn't.

I have good grades but I never felt happy. I also have good friends whom they love me, but I don't love them. I just can't seem to go deeper in a relationship. I like to keep things platonic. I never had crushes, I never had a sexual drive nor even the "natural feeling" to explore it. I have a good relationship with everybody and I have no enemies. I just love God and I'm fascinated by His creations. However, I never worshipped Him for the sake of a better afterlife.

I lack sexual desires and I'm uncomfortable with affection. I tried to focus more on Allah and to try to find a good reason to live, but I cannot. Some will prescribe it as depression, but it's not. I'm not depressed, but I'm not happy. I'm just trapped in this place called "neutrality" in which I don't mind living but I don't mind dying either.

Lately, my mom and I started to have a good relationship, but it's still awkward. I feel empty.


In this counseling answer:

• If you have a school counselor at your school, I highly encourage you to have a meeting with him or her. Or speak with a family member you trust.

• It is possible that your mother is undergoing a few mental issues herself which are manifesting themselves in a form of abuse towards her daughter.

• The most important thing in life for you right now is working on building yourself. Think of ways that you can achieve that and everything else will slowly subside.

Assalamu Alaikum dear sister,

I am truly sorry to hear of the troubles that you are facing in life right now. I am certain that things will change for the better in sha Allah. I know you have heard this before, but you must not let your past define your future.

Speak with a school counselor/family member/friend you trust

Sister, if you have a school counselor at your school, I highly encourage you to have a meeting with him or her. She or he would be the best person to seek help from.

If you do not have a school counselor, or in addition to seeking help from him or her, are you able to contact anyone in your family you trust? Such as an uncle or an aunt, or a cousin or a grandparent who you can trust? If so, I highly suggest that you meet them and discuss your mother’s behavior. I think that it is possible that your mother is undergoing a few mental issues herself which are manifesting themselves in a form of abuse of towards her daughter.

I suggest that you speak to a family member your trust about this and get her someone to guide and help her relieve her inner stressors and weaknesses as well.

Mom is Strict & Controlling; I Feel Lonely - About Islam

Humans need to feel loved and accepted. However, if what we are seeking from our parents do not come to us, we should seek it from someplace else.

You also mentioned that your mother was rude to your sister. Try speaking with your sister and create a strong sisterhood bond.

In addition, you should also seek the help and support from someone who you trust. Is there a mosque located near your home which you can attend and make friends with people your age? Are there distress hotlines for young teens who you can contact so that they can talk with you and help you navigate a stressful time?

I found you two helpful websites. Please, have a look at them and contact them immediately. They will be able to help you further:

Suicide Hotline

Child Helpline

Work Towards a Better Future

I completely understand how devastating it must be to feel disliked by your own parent. However, you need to realize that if you succumb to your feelings and let them control your state of mind, you will never be able to achieve any positivity in the future. Do not become a victim of the bad past by letting it ruin your present and future.

Dear sister, you are only 14. If you study hard (and you said you had good grades, mashallah), find a good pastime hobby, and work towards being healthy, you can achieve great heights and the past will not even matter to you. However, the difficult part is to avoid overthinking about the negativity in your life.

Step 1: Distracting your mind is only possible when you find a passion

The first advice that I will give you is to find your passion. What is it that drives you? Imagining yourself as what kind of professional brings a smile to your face? What do you really see yourself doing? What do you love to do?

Simply being good at a field does not mean that it is your passion. I am sure that you have probably heard this quote before, “if you enjoy what you are doing, you have really never worked a single day your life!” You need to find what you enjoy doing such that it does not seem a burden to you, such that it flows naturally, and you find comfort and happiness in it.

Step 2: Focus on yourself, and not how others behave around you

The most important thing in life for you right now is working on building yourself. Think of ways that you can achieve that and everything else will slowly subside.

Step 3: Exercise

The goal is not simply to exercise; the goal is to exercise to enjoy. Technology is there to help us. Although most of the time it detracts us away from our true purposes, it can do wonders if used in the right way.

Check out this counseling video:

There are many, many YouTube videos which you can subscribe and follow on a regular basis. Exercising is the treatment and cure for any and all kinds of maladies, stress, and psychological issues. Believe it or not, even cancer patients who exercise after their initial diagnosis and treatment realize that there is a significantly reduced chance of recurrence of cancer if they are regular in exercising afterward. Exercise also alleviates the stress and helps to balance mood and make one feel happy.

Do Things that Make Your Happy

To bring happiness, you need to pursue things that make you happy. You need to find happiness and happiness is an internal state.

Therefore, I advise you to try to do something that brings about happiness and inner joy in you. It is often true that when the times are the hardest, the work is the most productive and there is more effort which stems with sincerity. Not only will this activity distract you from focusing on your mother’s negative behavior towards you, but it will also even help you feel good.

You need to ensure that the activity you are doing is something which you truly like to do. It can be as simple as drawing, reading, watching something entertaining, and anything which helps you sincerely deter your thoughts.

Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to constantly indulge in studying to achieve great heights. If you see great doctors or even great lawyers, you will see that there is something totally on the other side of the spectrum which they occupy their spare time with. Either they are writers, artists, public speakers, teachers, and the list goes on.

I encourage you to find something which you are passionate about and strengthen your relationship with that activity.

Find peace through prayer 

Allah SWT says in the Quran,

“Those who have believed and whose hearts are assured by the remembrance of Allah.  Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah hearts are assured.” (Quran 13:28)

You need to try and get close to Allah through a constant recitation of the Quran, and by spending time learning about the religion through books and religious videos and channels.

Therefore, dear sister, positivity can be found in many things, but it is only possible once you stop making your mother the center of your life’s attention given her negative behavior. I pray that you will lead a successful, happy and a healthy life on the right path.



Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

Read more:

How to Deal with Controlling Parents?

Studying Abroad to Escape from a Controlling Mother

About Madiha Sadaf
Madiha Sadaf in an undergraduate student at the University of Ottawa, enrolled in BSc. with Major in Biology and Psychology with Minor in Health Social Sciences.