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on 29 March 2009
I lost my mother when I was eight years old. My life without her was extremely traumatic. I truly believe that I have been profoundly affected by that loss. It affects every part of my being. I have always felt socially inadequate (almost like an outsider looking in at the rest of the world). This book has finally acknowledged that loss.
The author, Anne Tracey approaches this very sensitive subject with a tenderness which is evidently born out of her own personal experiences of loss and grief. As each chapter unfolds, you walk gently through the lives of 26 women who all lost their mother when they were young. 26 very different beginnings but their experiences quickly merge together as they struggle to survive in an uncertain world without the care, security and love of a mother.
I have never been able to find a book like this written in Ireland. Reading the feelings and experiences of other women like myself has definitely helped me to come to terms with my own loss. I will read and re-read this book many times. I don't feel alone anymore.
Quite simply, a very `powerful' book, beautifully written and very much needed. This book will bring comfort to so many women and should be essential reading for anyone who comes into contact with young children who have been bereaved of their mother!
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on 13 November 2012
What a succinct study into the lives of those little girls who lost their mums young (0-11). The book reviews how maternal loss was dealt with decades ago (e.g. never spoken about), the effect of loss on the daughter, and the resultant effect on their childhood, teenage and adult personality/life; and finally it encompasses how the traumatised child deals with adult life (marriage, motherhood, subsequent losses).

For those that feel in the dark about why they do what they do this answers the questions, some long sought after, and some quite enlightening. It is similar to Motherless Daughters in its conclusions but it is less voluminous in its array of stories. Dr Tracy has used a sample group of 26 Irish ladies of varying ages to draw her extremely perceptive and "to the point" conclusions. It is based on the Irish population, however the trauma and resultant effect of losing a mother crosses borders, races and languages. What happened in Ireland, happened in England, the US, Australia to name a few....

I think I underlined most of the book as it resonated so deeply. There's no messing with airy fairy empathetic language in this title. It is an academic-ish study. Be strong if you are reading it for yourself. Equally it is totally recommended for spouses of those who have lost young to help them comprehend the enormity of the loss and the effect it has had in all aspects of life. Finally, I would recommend it to anyone dealing with or working with ladies that have been through the life-changing event of mother loss pre-puberty.

It was an eye-opener and answered many questions for me. Validated the way I live I suppose.... Thank you Dr Tracy for taking the time to focus on a subject we all want to talk about, but society wants to brush under the carpet because its too upsetting.
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