Normally an infant learns to use his mother as a "beacon of orientation" during the first five months of life. The mother's presence is like a fixed light that gives the child the security to move out safely to explore the world and then return safely to harbor.
(Louise J. Kaplan (20th century), U.S. psychologist. Oneness and Separateness: From Infant to Individual, introduction (1978).)
Oh, I've got the prettiest mother. I've got the nicest mother. That's what I tell everybody. I say I've got the sweetest mother in the world.
(John Lee Mahin (1902-1984), U.S. screenwriter, and novel by William March. Mervyn Le Roy. Rhoda (Patty McCormack), The Bad Seed, this is what Rhoda says to keep her mother from inquiring too closely into her activities (1956).
If you can think of a better category, you're welcome to change it.)
Such joint ownership creates a place where mothers can "father" and fathers can "mother." It does not encourage mothers and fathers to compete with one another for "first- place parent." Such competition is not especially good for marriage and furthermore drives kids nuts.
(Kyle D. Pruett (20th century), professor, child psychiatrist. The Nurturing Father, ch. 13 (1987).)
Breaking free from the delicious security of mother love can be a painful rupture for either mother or son. Some boys can't do it. Some mothers can't let it happen because they know the boy is not ready to leave her; others are simply not ready to give up their sons.
(Frank Pittman (20th century), U.S. psychiatrist and family therapist. Man Enough, ch. 7 (1993).)
Profound as race prejudice is against the Negro American, it is not practically as far- reaching as the prejudice against women. For stripping away the sentimentality which makes Mother's Day and Best American Mother Contests, the truth is that women suffer all the effects of a minority.
(Pearl S. Buck (1892-1973), U.S. author; born in China. Of Men and Women, ch. 8 (1941).)
Nobody can misunderstand a boy like his own mother.... Mothers at present can bring children into the world, but this performance is apt to mark the end of their capacities. They can't even attend to the elementary animal requirements of their offspring. It is quite surprising how many children survive in spite of their mothers.
(Norman Douglas (1868-1952), British author. Mr. Keith, in South Wind, ch. 22 (1917).)
So I begin to understand why my mother's radar is so sensitive to criticism. She still treads the well-worn ruts of her youth, when her impression of mother was of a woman hard to please, frequently negative, and rarely satisfied with anyoneleast of all herself.
(Melinda M. Marshall (20th century), U.S. author and editor. Good Enough Mothers, ch. 3 (1993).)