Love Mentor Elizabeth Sullivan poses the question- what do you do if your partner has another woman in his life … and it's his mother? The relationship a man has with his mother is his first relationship with a woman, and the basis of all his relationships. However, some tensions can arise when you feel your partner is too close to their mother. With Mother's Day approaching, keep in mind these points on how to cope if your partner is too close to his mother.

Relationships on Female First

Relationships on Female First

Try to think positively - You want to feel comfortable in your relationship so do what you can to erase tensions wherever possible. Consider it from your partner's point of view. Many men do want to spend a lot of time with their mother, especially if she is widowed, has ill health or he is an only child. If he is making the effort to look after his mother, appreciate what a good man he is and what a big heart he has. If you're feeling annoyed or jealous try to think of these positive qualities.

Make an effort with his mother - You have something in common, you both love the same man. Build your own relationship with her, based on that shared interest, so that you don't feel threatened by the time your partner is spending with her. If you have a good relationship, and enjoy her company, you won't mind as much if she is around all the time. It's likely she will appreciate that you're making an effort and it is always good to keep her on side! Develop a strategy that gets her on board; spend time with her doing something you both enjoy.

Remind him that you're there to support him now - If he is always going to her for advice or support when making decisions, make time to discuss issues with him so that he starts to appreciate that you're there for support now. In a healthy relationship you and your partner are number one to each other. It's fair enough to ask your parents for help or advice occasionally but if it's all the time, they are still dependent on their parents rather than building a relationship with you.

Keep Communicating - Sit down and talk about your partnership, where do your parents fit into this? If you feel that your partner is prioritising his mother over you, you need to explain how this makes you feel and what you need him to do instead. Be very clear about how this affects you e.g. 'when you prioritise your mother… I feel … I'd prefer it if you would…' and give an example of what you would like him to do instead. Try to keep the conversation friendly rather than accusatory. Someone can argue the facts but they can't argue with how you feel.

Relationships with your partner's parents can be difficult as there is a history and love that you cannot compete with. You shouldn't try to, but don't let this stop you from telling your partner how you feel as they might not even be aware of it. You shouldn't feel as though you're competing against his mother. Instead try to see her as part of your life too and create your own bond and relationship with her. She wants to feel just as special and part of her child's life as you do.