Mom and Son Relationship that blurs the lines of a traditional relationship

Nov 2021
Hello everybody!

I need direction on a relationship that I’m in. I’m dating a girl that has a only child, a son that recently turned 21. There is trauma within the mother/son dynamic.

The father of the child committed suicide when the mother was 2 months pregnant with the child. From day 1 it has been the mother and the son literally against the world.

No outside support from either sides Maternal or Fraternal parents. (Grand Parents in this case)

The girl I’m dating has been through a few long term relationships that all ended due to the mother/son relationship taking precedence over the main mother/boyfriend relationship as I’m finding out now.

I have thought there are some bad optics looking from an outside perspective with the mother/son dynamic that she feels are “normal” and not cause for alarm

Keep in mind the son is 21.

The son does not have a normal friends his own age that he socializes with on any normal basis. Stays in the house most of the time with little interaction with people his own age. She says he has social anxiety

Son had a girlfriend for a little over 2.5 years but he says it was not fulfilling and he dumped her, he has no interest in looking for somebody new to fulfill his life.

I find this strange, as a 21 year old I was looking at being with as many people of the opposite sex as much as humanly possible. The fact that this freedom of not being tied down to one person doesn’t move his needle is strange to me.

Son has been through literally 10 plus jobs over the 3 years I’ve been with the mother, two of which he was fired first day on the job. He says he self sabotages himself, because he cant deal with the thought of his mother being home at night alone.

The son sometimes sleeps with the mom in the same bed, I have voiced concerns, she said its always how its been, that it calms him and his anxiety. I say B/S!!

Mom dresses for bed NOT in a night gown or pajamas, but panties and a loose fitting and very revealing old T-shirt, that if you look hard enough at the assets you don’t need to use your imagination much.

This one I have kept quiet about, but want to bring up in counseling very soon.

The mom and son obviously have some kind of dynamic that doesn’t breed confidence for outsiders trying to court the mom (me) and I’m trying to work through them slowly without being accusatory

Is there a psychological condition, assessment, or label that this relationship would have. The mom and I are going to therapy and I want to talk about this dynamic.

I want to say to the therapist "I think mom and son have XYZ condition". Etc…Is there such a definition?
Aug 2021
Austin, TX
Oedipus complex? You are right, this is not a healthy relationship! A child older than about ten or twelve has no business sleeping with a parent of either sex unless they are visiting grandma (and that is a joke, by the way) Be very careful here, there are some dynamics which may be very deep working on both sides, mother and son. Remember Hitchcock's Psycho? I am glad you and she are in counseling together, the son will probably require counseling as well. There is probably some co-dependent issues here as well, mom is probably using son as a surrogate husband, and not encouraging him to love his own life. You can not tell her, but the counselor should instruct her to do everything in her power to make her son an independent contributing member of society.
Good luck and let us know how it goes,
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