Last Updated on August 15, 2023 by Angela Vaz

You’ve noticed a trend.

You are constantly attracting guys with mommy issues.

They’re either unable to stand up for you because they’re controlled by everything their mom says, or they have a horrible relationship with her, and you know it will translate to you someday.

Either way, you’re beginning to wonder if it’s something you’re projecting or something you’re doing.

I feel you.

I’ve been in your shoes.

My first 2 long relationships were with men who had mommy issues.

I knew it had something to do with my filters and what I was putting out there, so I spent a lot of time improving myself, and now I am in a healthy relationship with a man who has no mommy issues.

In fact, I am close to his mother, and I treat her like I would my mom.

I am very lucky to have such a strong relationship with my partner and his mom.

Let’s get one thing straight.

In no way should you blame yourself.

You’ve already identified the problem – this is great progress. So, don’t blame yourself – this is not what this blog post is about.

It’s about understanding the subtle signals that might steer you toward men with unresolved relationships with their mothers.

You deserve a relationship that’s built on a strong foundation of mutual respect, understanding, and love.

But sometimes, patterns from the past can sneakily find their way into our present. So, if you’ve ever wondered why you keep encountering certain types of men who seem to carry emotional baggage, you’re in the right place.

We’ll explore the signs together– those little flags that may pop up – signaling a connection to guys who might have mommy issues.

It’s not about passing judgment; it’s about gaining insight so that you can date better men.


Let’s dive in!

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What are some signs that a guy has mommy issues?

what is a guy with mommy issues

Skip this section if you already know this and want to understand why you attract guys with mommy issues.

But I thought it was imperial first to understand what mommy issues are.

A guy has mommy issues if he displays these signs:

  1. Overdependence or Distance: A man with mommy issues might display extremes in his relationship with his mother. He could be overly dependent on her for emotional support and decision-making, or he might actively avoid or distance himself from her.
  2. Seeking Approval: Constantly seeking approval, validation, or attention from women, similar to how a child seeks approval from a mother figure, could indicate unresolved maternal issues.
  3. Unhealthy Attachments: Developing unhealthy attachments or codependent relationships with partners that mimic the dynamics he had with his mother might be a sign of mommy issues.
  4. Difficulty with Emotional Expression: Struggling to express or understand emotions, especially vulnerable ones, might suggest underlying issues related to his mother’s emotional presence or absence.
  5. Idealization or Criticism: Extremes in how he perceives women, swinging between idealizing them as perfect caregivers or being overly critical and dismissive, could reflect unresolved maternal feelings.
  6. Boundary Issues: Difficulty setting healthy boundaries in relationships, which could stem from blurred lines between maternal care and romantic partnerships.
  7. Negative Patterns: Repeating negative relationship patterns or struggling with intimacy and trust might be linked to unresolved maternal dynamics.
  8. Insecurity or Low Self-Worth: Feeling insecure, inadequate, or having low self-esteem, especially in relationships, could be connected to unaddressed maternal issues.
  9. Unresolved Grief or Anger: Intense emotions like grief or anger related to his mother, whether she’s present or absent, might point to unresolved mommy issues.
  10. Avoiding Commitment: Fear of commitment or difficulty forming deep emotional connections could result from past maternal experiences.
  11. Emotional Instability: Frequent mood swings, emotional outbursts, or difficulty managing emotions might indicate underlying maternal issues.
  12. Dependency on Female Authority Figures: Relying heavily on female authority figures for decision-making or emotional support could indicate a desire for maternal guidance.

So if you notice that a man displays most of these signs – he definitely has mommy issues and needs to work through them so that he can form healthy relationships with women.

Now, let’s dive into why we attract such men.

Why do you attract guys with mommy issues? 7 genuine reasons

1. It’s within your comfort zone

it is within your comfort zone

Imagine a cozy blanket from your childhood – it makes you feel safe and secure.

Similarly, when we meet someone who reminds us of our familiar feelings with our parents, it can create a sense of comfort.

This might lead us to be drawn to men who exhibit traits, behaviors, or even flaws that remind us of our mothers, whether positive or negative.

It’s like subconsciously seeking that warm and fuzzy feeling, even if it means encountering challenges.

Your relationship with your mother might have shaped your understanding of love, care, and security as a child.

If those experiences were positive, you might unconsciously seek out men who possess qualities similar to your mother.

It’s like seeking a sense of “home” in your romantic relationships – you’re drawn to the feelings of comfort and safety that you associate with your upbringing.

This happens subconsciously – it’s inbuilt and not something we can control.

For example, if you had a loving and supportive mother, you might feel attracted to men who exhibit kindness, patience, and care, as these qualities evoke a sense of home for you.

Conversely, if you had a distant or critical mother, you might be drawn to men who display similar behaviors, perhaps with the hope of resolving or understanding those dynamics.

In my case, my mom worked 24/7, and I barely got her attention.

I’d do everything I could to get her attention – that involved playing pranks on her or scoring high marks on my tests. I’d jump through hoops to get her to notice me.

And that’s why I kept attracting emotionally unavailable men.

By recognizing these tendencies, we can make conscious choices and work towards building healthy, balanced connections based on genuine compatibility and shared values.

2. An unresolved past

you have an unresolved past

Think of your life as a puzzle, with each piece representing an experience or emotion.

Sometimes, there are missing pieces or pieces that don’t quite fit together perfectly. These missing or misfit pieces can create emotional gaps within us.

Regarding relationships, these emotional gaps can subconsciously influence the men we’re attracted to.

If you have unresolved issues or unhealed wounds from your past, you might be drawn to partners who mirror those gaps.

It’s almost as if our subconscious seeks to complete the puzzle by finding someone who “fits” with our emotional experiences, even if those experiences were painful and horrible.

For example, if you grew up feeling unimportant or ignored, you might be drawn to partners struggling with feeling neglected – because you get them.

Your heart bleeds for them because they resemble you as a child.

On a deeper level, you might hope to finally receive the attention and validation you’ve been seeking by being there for them.

This can create a sense of familiarity, even if it means repeating patterns that aren’t ultimately healthy.

Similarly, you might be attracted to partners struggling with trust issues if you had difficulties trusting others due to past betrayals.

This might create a shared understanding, but it can also reinforce negative patterns if both individuals cannot address their trust-related wounds.

It’s very important to realize that this isn’t conscious behavior.

This all happens subconsciously because we want to heal and find closure.

However, by constantly repeating this pattern – we will go down a path of making unhealthy relationship choices.

Just by being aware of this, you are already changing your perception and recognizing that you need to heal.

Now you’re going to actively seek partners who are emotionally available and want to become better versions of themselves.

3. You have a craving to be a caregiver

you are a natural caregiver

Please understand that this is in no way a flaw – I salute you for being this kind of person.

We need more caregivers in this world.

But there has to be a balance.

Be too kind; people will take you for granted or take advantage of you.

Think about the feeling you get when you help someone in need – it’s a sense of fulfillment and purpose.

It gives you a high, right?

Some people are strongly inclined to care for and support others. This personality trait can significantly affect the types of partners we attract.

When you possess a caregiver craving, you might find yourself drawn to individuals who appear to need care or assistance.

You’re basically attracted to broken people.

It’s almost like an instinctual response to step in and provide help, comfort, and guidance. So the minute someone shows emotional distress or vulnerability – you feel attracted to them. You’re even able to connect to them better.

For example, if you meet a man who seems to have experienced difficulties, you might feel a strong urge to support him and improve things. You might even feel like your love and care can help heal his wounds.

Does that sound like you?

But as I said earlier – there has to be a balance.

While being kind and loving is important – you can only help people who want to help themselves.

They should not depend on you 100% – that’s unhealthy.

Because, like it or not, you need support and care too.

That’s why a healthy relationship is based on mutual respect, shared values, and emotional compatibility.

Both partners must offer support to one another.

This is a healthy dynamic.

If you do have a caregiver personality – you can start attracting emotionally healthy men by learning your needs and desires and drawing boundaries.

Please know that you deserve to find a partner who can reciprocate the love and care you give him.

Prioritize your well-being.

4. You are too kind – an empathy magnet

you are an empathy magnet

Think about a close friend who always listens to you, understands your feelings, and offers a shoulder to lean on.

This friend’s empathetic nature draws you closer and makes you feel truly heard.

You may even start depending on them whenever you encounter a problem – because they provide a judgment-free zone and always make time to listen to you.

Similarly, if you have a strong sense of empathy and compassion – you will unintentionally attract people who need understanding and support.

People might be drawn to you because they sense your genuine care and willingness to listen and empathize with their struggles truly.

This can be particularly attractive to men with unresolved emotions or past experiences that they want to share and process.

So, if you’re super kind and a good listener, these broken or emotionally unavailable men may find you very attractive.

They’ll share their challenges with you and feel understood and validated.

This will appeal to you because they’ll make you believe that nobody understands them as you do.

In a way, they’re right – but at the same time, you have to realize that you aren’t their therapist.

The relationship dynamic has already shifted, with them constantly depending on you and you having to support them and you.

This is why I emphasize the importance of boundaries.

While being kind is a wonderful quality, a relationship must be balanced.

My partner is very understanding of my anxiety, and I understand his OCD.

We lean on each other when we are stressed/anxious/upset.

But it’s mutual.

We both support one another when the other is feeling down and low.

That’s how it should be.

As an empathy magnet, you can create a safe space for open communication and emotional sharing.

But you must also gauge if your partner will do the same for you.

5. You are very independent

you are very independent

Imagine someone who exudes confidence and self-assuredness – they seem to have a clear sense of who they are and where they’re headed.

This kind of strength can be incredibly attractive to people seeking stability and guidance, especially those with unresolved issues related to their mothers.

Men who have experienced distant, absent, or challenging relationships with their mothers might find themselves drawn to women who display a strong sense of independence.

Because they may have lacked a stable maternal presence when they were growing up, this can lead them to find strong and confident women very attractive.

Or maybe they never received care and guidance growing up – and when they see women who are strong and self-sufficient, they can’t help but want to date those women.

Or perhaps they just didn’t have a strong role model growing up. And you being an independent woman, can embody all the qualities they wish their mothers had.

Again, you have to remember that they’re not doing this deliberately.

It’s happening on a subconscious level.

It’s natural for people to be drawn to qualities they feel they lack.

This is why taking your time dating and getting to know the person you’re seeing is important.

You have to strike a balance.

Since you are independent, you have to look for a man who’s very similar and compatible with you.

This man will be emotionally healthy and confident – he will be secure and have good self-esteem.

It’s all about finding a healthy relationship where both of you can grow and support each other’s emotional well-being.

6. You are very expressive in your communication

you are expressive in your communication

Imagine two people speaking different languages – it can lead to misunderstandings and confusion.

Similarly, when 2 people have very different communication styles, you can inadvertently attract a man with mommy issues.

Because this man has an unresolved relationship with his mother and struggles to express emotions or understand emotional cues, he may find it challenging to open up about feelings and vulnerabilities.

So a woman who excels in communication and is very open and honest may create a safe and nurturing environment for him, and he may be attracted to that.

This is why you need to take your time and get to know the person you are dating.

Note how he talks about difficult subjects.

If he is always open to communication and likes to resolve your differences peacefully and kindly – you know you’ve landed a good man.

Take your time to get to know this person – be patient.

Building a healthy and lasting relationship requires mutual effort, patience, and a commitment to growth and understanding.

7. You rush into relationships

you rush into relationships

It may be hard to believe, but emotionally available men exist.

They’re difficult to find, but they do exist.

You just have to be patient and not rush into a relationship.

Most first dates are awkward, so you should not judge a first date on chemistry alone.

It’s very crucial to get to know a person on a deeper level and really pay attention to the following:

  • If you both are compatible with each other
  • You have similar goals and values
  • You both want the same things in life (if he wants to travel and you want to have kids and there is no budging, you can’t make the relationship work)
  • If you both are emotionally mature to talk about your differences and resolve them peacefully
  • If you both love and respect each other and want a monogamous relationship with each other

These things take time.

That’s why you should not wear your heart on your sleeve – you need to take time to get to know this person.

Date them while getting to know them.


Understanding the reasons you might be attracting men with mommy issues is the first step to fixing this.

Now you know why you’re attracting men with mommy issues – so you’re going to be able to attract healthier men and make better choices.

Please understand that this post was not written to label or stereotype individuals but it’s more about shedding light on why we continue to attract broken men or emotionally unavailable men.

This post is to help you make better informed choices.

You will now be able to heal, become better and attract more fulfilling relationships.

Take some time to reflect on your needs and desires.

Learn to draw better boundaries and take time to date.

Don’t rush into relationships.

So even if you attract a man with mommy issues – you’ll be able to spot it rather quickly and walk away from the relationship peacefully.

Finding love takes time.

Embrace this opportunity, and never close the door to your heart.

Keep an open mind and heart – you’ll find that person eventually.

Here are a few more posts that might help:

Angela is a 30 year old Illustrator and Blogger living with her 2 adorable labradors in Bangalore, India. She has a degree in Psychology and Human Relationships from the University of Toronto. When she's not writing her heart out or drawing, you'll find her sipping chai and reading non-fiction books.

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