Jennifer Aniston struggled to cope up with the wounds left by her broken relationship with her mother. She felt unattractive and insecure.
Be it a mother or a father, when you're young and growing up, a parent's love is irreplaceable. A mother's affection is especially something that every child craves. But it doesn't always work out as you wished for it to. If you don't feel seen or heard by someone you look up to for guidance, for a role model, it can leave you wanting to do everything you can to seek their attention. Jennifer Aniston talking about how her relationship with her mother made her feel is something many are able to relate to.
Aniston's troubled relationship with mother, Nancy Dow started very early and continued even after she made it big in Holywood. It had affected her so much that she played a character in the movie “Dumplin” that very much resembled her mother, a model. “One of the reasons I really loved the mother-daughter aspect of it was because it was very similar in a way to what my mother, and our relationship, was,” said the 50-year-old actress to Huffington Post.
"She was a model and she was all about presentation and what she looked like and what I looked like,” the actress added.
The Hollywood star admitted all she was looking for as a child was to be loved and cared for by her mother. “I did not come out the model child she’d hoped for and it was something that really resonated with me, this little girl just wanting to be seen and wanting to be loved by a [mom] who was too occupied with things that didn’t quite matter.”
For Aniston, all of these started at the age of nine after being abandoned by her father. Left with just her mother, she depended on her mother and looked up to her. After all, she was her only parental figure. But heartbreakingly, Aniston reveals that she never found the comfort and reassurance she sought from her mother.
“She was critical. She was very critical of me. Because she was a model, she was gorgeous, stunning. I wasn’t. I never was. I honestly still don’t think of myself in that sort of light, which is fine. She was also very unforgiving. She would hold grudges that I just found so petty,” said the actress, recalling her childhood.
Her mother was from the world of modeling and wanted her daughter to focus on her looks, something that never really resonated with Aniston. Instead, she was left feeling unattractive and insecure, "She was from this world of, ‘Honey, take better care of yourself,' or ‘Honey, put your face on,' or all of those odd sound bites that I can remember from my childhood."
As Jennifer Aniston grew up, things became worse between the beloved Friends star and her mom. The mother-daughter duo started growing apart over the years and even stopped speaking to each other. Unable to tolerate her mother's temper, Aniston decided it was best for her to stay away.
Recalling incidents from her childhood, Aniston said, "If I get upset, I will discuss [things]. I will never scream and get hysterical like that. [But] I was never taught that I could scream." She continued," One time, I raised my voice to my mother, and I screamed at her, and she looked at me and burst out laughing. She was laughing at me [for] screaming back. And it was like a punch in my stomach.”
These incidents strained their relationship and the actress openly spoke of it many times. However, after her divorce from Brad Pitt, Aniston tried to reconnect with her mother. She even said her mother was not aware of how her past words and actions affected her in the long run. "She was missing what was [actually] important. I think she was just holding on and doing the best she could, struggling financially and dealing with a husband who was no longer there. Being a single mom in the '80s I'm sure was pretty crappy," said the actress to EOnline.
Though she revealed their relationship was "fine", the scars never fully healed. They maintained little contact till Nancy's death in 2011.