My Mother/My Self: The Daughter's Search for Identity

by Nancy Friday

Paperback, 1997




Delta (1997), Edition: Anniversary, 448 pages


Nancy Friday shows that the key to a woman's character lies in her relationship with her mother - that first binding relationship which becomes the model for so much of women's adult relationships with men, and whose fetters constrain her sexuality, independence and very selfhood.


(67 ratings; 3.4)

User reviews

LibraryThing member Louise_Waugh
This book irritated the crap out of me. Ms Friday goes on and on about how awful mother-daughter relationships are, as though that is universally true. She is self-congratulatory about her own life - her wonderful career, her awesome marriage, so superior to normal folks' marriages, her
Show More
childlessness. She admits to having considered a son, who would be a miniature version of her beloved, but the thought of having a daughter is too awful to contemplate. And anyway, having any child would detract from her perfect marriage. The importance she places on GREAT SEX seemed reasonable to me when i first read this as a college student, 20 years later.....well, sex is fun, great sex is extra fun, but its NOT the basis for a happy life long-term, any more than great food is. Perhaps even less.

I went so far as to look her up in Wikipedia and find she divorced that husband, and another, and never had children. I'm afraid she really though she was on to something, How to Live, back in the early second-wave feminist era, but she ended up missing the boat.
Show Less
LibraryThing member TheKnittingLady
I am surprised there are no reviews of this book. I read it when it first came out back in the 70s and it truly helped me get through some very difficult years. I have read it again and it is still a favourite book on my shelf. I think it helped me work through the mother/daughter issues and
Show More
honestly I needed that book... it has remained a book I would recommend and treasure. I believe Nancy Friday did a great job with this book and I still have the original from 1976 - it actually is comforting to see it there on the shelf.
Show Less
LibraryThing member satyridae
Perhaps a Freudian would give you good reasons I hated this book, I dunno. But it struck me as all surface.
LibraryThing member marti.booker
Terribly outdated. Don't think it has much to say to the younger generation now, for whom all mommies are expected to be "yummy mummies" and be hot and sexy days after giving birth. The Madonna/whore choice seems to have swung in the opposite direction since the time Friday wrote this. Probably was
Show More
a seminal work (ha ha) at the time, but now it's just not relevant.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Marse
At first I felt like the book was a big blamefest on mom. Everything is mom's fault - our relationships with men, our attitude towards sex, our treatment towards our daughters, the whole inauthentic life which is womanhood. It is obvious that Nancy Friday had real issues with her mom. She admits it
Show More
and many of her examples come from her own life and upbringing (and sessions with psychiatrists where she tries to hash out why her mom didn't love her). But underneath it all, it is an indictment of societal mores and attitudes that create a family situation which is detrimental to all involved and self-perpetuating. Though the style may come across as harsh and bitter at times, Friday does a good job of analyzing behaviors and attitudes which seem so ingrained in the relations between men and women that we often overlook them. Sometimes the book is out of date, but nevertheless worth reading -- together with Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique and Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex.
Show Less
LibraryThing member KimSalyers
it was sorta interesting. found it kind of hard to really get into
LibraryThing member KimSalyers
it was sorta interesting. found it kind of hard to really get into


Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

8 inches


0385320159 / 9780385320153
Page: 0.1884 seconds