For some people, it will be hard to understand why a man would be overly focused on his mother’s life and overlook his own life in the process. This will mean that he will do what he can to take care of her needs and spend very little time taking care of his own needs.

Now, this is not to say that he won’t take care of his basic needs but that can generally be about as far as it will. If he only had a few needs, how he is behaving would make complete sense.

A Strange Scenario

But, as he will have a number of different needs, how he is behaving is not going to make sense. Ultimately, he will be neglecting himself and this is going to have a detrimental effect on him and others.

He will pay a price for overlooking the needs that he needs to fulfil to be at his best and by not meeting his needs; he won’t be able to truly be there for others. What this illustrates is that he needs to be selfish to be selfless.

One Big Cover Up

However, although he will be paying a price for living in this way, he is likely to do what he can to obscure this fact. Not only can he hide this from others but he can also hide this from himself.

Therefore, he will be neglecting himself but he won’t realise that this is taking place. This is not to say that there won’t be things, both externally and internally, that will shed light on what is actually taking place.

One Need

So, the messages from others and the thoughts, feelings and sensations from within him can typically be blocked out. His main priority will be to be there for his mother, not to be there for himself.

As time passes, it is likely to get harder and harder for him to behave in this way, and there could come a point in time when he simply can’t function anymore. This could mean that he will end up having a breakdown.

Drawing the Line

If he was able to take a step back and reflect on what is going on, he could wonder why he is behaving in this way. Even so, if he was to stop behaving in this way, he could end up feeling extremely uncomfortable.

As a result, he could soon go back to how he was before and continue to neglect himself. This will show that being there for his mother is a way for him to avoid how he feels as opposed to something that he truly wants to do.

Going Deeper

Most likely, his survival will be attached to his mother, which is why he will need to stay close to her. If he was to draw the line and start living his own life, he can feel as though his very survival is at risk.

This need, while it will be the main need that is defining how he behaves, can just be one of many needs that he looks towards his mother to fulfil. He is then going to be a man but his primary needs will be the same needs that a child has.

Developmentally Stunted

As these needs are so powerful, it is to be expected that the rest of his needs, his adult needs, end up being cast aside. For him to be able to connect to these needs and to fulfil them, he will need to let go of his childhood needs.

What this will illustrate is that physically he is a man but emotionally he is a boy. For his life to change, he will need to feel like a man too; once this happens, there will be no reason for him to abandon himself.

What’s going on?

To understand why he is this way, it will be necessary to take a closer look at what probably took place during his early years. Most likely, this was a stage of his life when his mother used him to meet some of her adult and unmet childhood needs.

He would have been forced to disconnect from his own needs and to focus on his mothers needs. If he didn’t do this, he is likely to have been punished, disapproved of and/or abandoned, and this is likely to have taken place anyway.

The Outcome

This would have stopped him from receiving the nutrients that he needed to be able to grow and develop. The years would have passed and his physical and mental self would have gown but his emotional self wouldn’t have.

Along with staying in an emotionally stunted state, he would have also experienced a lot of pain. This pain, pain that relates to his unmet childhood needs, will be behind his desire to focus on his mother.


This stage of his life will be over and his unmet childhood needs will need to be faced and grieved. But, a big part of him won’t want to accept this and will be giving him the need to try to receive what he missed out on all those years ago.

This will show that he is carrying a lot of pain; if this pain wasn’t as strong as it was, he wouldn’t have such a strong need to behave in the same way. With this in mind, this pain will gradually need to be worked through.


If a man can relate to this and he is ready to change his life, he may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.

Author's Bio: 

Author, transformational writer, teacher and consultant, Oliver JR Cooper, hails from England. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation, including love, partnership, self-love, self-worth, inner child and inner awareness. With over two thousand, eight hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

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