Project started: August 2001
Dedicated to Suzanne Summers: 1957-1986

Aside from my mother's death and my own grieving, this web site was in part inspired by Hope Edelman's books, Motherless Daughters: The Legacy of Loss and Motherless Daughters: Words of Courage, Grief, and Healing. Hope reveals how the absence of a nurturing hand shapes a woman's identity, why living beyond a mother's final year reminds a daughter of her exquisite separatness, how present-day relationships are defined by past losses, what the unmothered woman can do to reclaim her autonomy and restore her connection to the family motherline, and how to understand grief not as a passage, but as an ongoing journey. They were the first books available that dealt directly with mother loss, and they still remain as such. After reading them, I wanted to start a project that would help me connect with all of the motherless daughters that were obviously out there. I have always felt so alone in my loss because I have never met, face-to-face, another woman who grew up without a mother. I also wanted to start a site that would help other motherless daughters as well, a site dedicated to uniting women regardless of what age their lost their mothers or how they lost their mothers. The circumstances are rarely the same, but the uniqueness of mother loss is, and we need a place to discuss these issues with people who truly understand.

Losing my mother has been the strongest rite of passage and harder journey in my life. It affects me every single day, and sometimes it gets unbearable painful, and sometimes I make discoveries that make me feel better about it. When I think back to how hard it was for me to deal with when I was younger, I sometimes have no idea how I got here, how I am still alive and coping today. In this society, and it is very understandable, losing a mother seems cruel and even unimaginable. The discomfort and shame I felt in elementary is always there in the back of my mind. Every mother's day my peers would all make cards and crafts for their mother while I sat away from the group thinking of excuses to tell people so I would not have to look at them and say, "My mother is dead." Although I was glad there were so many girls with great mothers, it pained me to hear of these mothers making their daughters' lunches, braiding their hair, or taking them to buy their first training bra. I longed for the mother-daughter bond I always heard so much about. I had people ask me why my father always picked me up instead of my mother, and I never knew what to say. I hated saying it out loud. I feel it was especially hard for me, as a young girl, because your mother is so much a part of your life as a young girl and that was made very clear by how much my peers talked about their mothers, even the boys. I even had ridiculous problems to deal with such as having all-girl sleep-overs but having to find a female chaperone as to not make the other parents uncomfortable. I also know how hard it was and still is for me to form relationships with women (of any age) because I am just not as comfortable with them as I should be. I have suffered from depression for a large portion of my life, and my mother's death has definitely contributed to this and will always remain a large obstacle.

Bringing other motherless daughters together, to me, is one coping mechanism. This site will hopefully give people a chance to share their stories and provide a common bond with others that makes the loss a bit more bearable. There are so many things I feel I have missed out on, and I appreciate, so much, being able to go to other motherless women to ask how maybe they have coped. I also like to reveal my own coping mechanisms in the hope that it might help another woman out there. Unity and support are truly key when it comes to the grieving process and handling the death of a loved one. Although some of us may have supportive families or friends, the type of understanding another motherless woman can provide is unique and irreplaceable.

My "story" does not even begin to cover the journey I have travelled so far, but hopefully in time I will be able to get more of my writings up. In the meantime, I hope those who come across this site find it helpful in some way or that they even feel compelled to submit their own story. The stories on this site really do help people out there who are struggling to find a connection or people who understand their loss. It takes so much courage to share your story, but the result is endless appreciation from motherless daughters worldwide, and I have the pleasure of hearing from them when they write to me.

Thank you so much to everyone who has been supportive of this project and to all those who may come across it in the future and use it as a coping tool. I love hearing from all of you, so feel free to drop me an e-mail if you ever want or need to at motherless(@)papervixen.net.

Copyright 2001-2015 A.E. Cox - Content, coding, design. Please ask permission before using content from this web site.