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Life coach Karen Regan lives in Shirley, but her reach radiates far beyond her geographic area. Karen is a certified life coach because from her own experience she realized that women helping women could actually make the difference, from feeling alone and suffering in silence to connecting with someone who not only understood but can help.

From Karen, “I got into coaching because I looked at my life after college and realized it was missing something. I thought I was just stuck in a rut and things would magically change but they didn’t. After four years of living in a city, going to a job I hated every day and dating a guy that I didn’t have or want a future with, I knew I needed to do something.

After much soul searching I figured out the one secret that changed my whole life for the better in one year. I moved to a 100-acre farm, took a new job and met my future husband. I knew I wanted to help people change their lives too. How many people are stuck in the same rut I was? So I hired a coach and started my coaching business five years ago.

I knew that so many people were like me: they get up, go to work that they hate, come home, cook dinner, watch a little television and go to bed just to do it all over again tomorrow. After speaking with so many women I realized there was little fun and passion in our lives. I started coaching women at night by phone to help them discover their secret to happiness.

But then my mom died. We weren’t always close, but I think that made me feel her loss even more. There would be no more chances to mend fences. I looked for her approval my whole life and now the chance to win it was stolen. I didn’t realize how much she added to my life until she was gone.

I wrote an article in my monthly column ” Life Your Way” about being a motherless daughter. I needed a story and that one came easily.

I was flooded with emails from all these beautiful daughters who had lost their moms. They shared their stories with me and each one thanked me for allowing them to tell their story and to have someone listen. The women were at different stages of losing their moms. Some had been gone 20 years ago and some knew it wouldn’t be long. These women opened up to a stranger and shared their heartfelt and personal grief with me. And thanked me, no less, as though I had done them a favor. It touched me that these women trusted me and shared their pain to try and comfort me in mine.

I filed their stories away and a few months later I was asked to write a newsletter. I was strapped for time, so I reran my Motherless Daughter story. The same thing happened and I got flooded with reply e-mails from women who had lost their moms. I felt like someone was trying to get my attention and I wondered about this need women without their mom have. Do they need to talk to other women about losing their mom? I started asking women who lost their mom if talking to other women in a group would be comforting to them.

They told me that friends who still had their moms either didn’t want to hear about losing your mom or they simply didn’t understand what it was like not to have your mom. So they stopped talking about it and suffered in silence and loneliness. They were aching for someone who understood and could relate to talk to. I know from personal experience I could use someone else to talk to and maybe help me tap into the emotions that I didn’t feel but knew must be there somewhere.

So, this past April I started a telephone Daughters Without Moms bi-weekly group. We had five women who had lost their moms; some many years ago and some more recently.

Some people may question a group by phone but there are so many advantages.

You are anonymous and people will reveal more about themselves. You can live anywhere and dial in to the bridge line. My audience doesn’t have to be in Massachusetts. As one women told me, many support groups are in hospitals and so many of us have spent enough of our lifetime in a hospital and would just as soon never go into another one. You are in the comfort of your own home. You are sharing personal stories and you may get emotional but you are safe at home.

Not many of the women cried in the group. My goal is for women to heal and not wallow in grief. We laughed and shared and had very different experiences but we all learned from one another. I encourage women to bring troubles they are having so we can help her through it while we all learn. An example of “trouble” is a girlfriend made a promise to her mom on her deathbed to keep her relationship with her brother after her mom died. Her brother was mean and verbally abusive to my friend and she was challenged as to what to do. She felt she couldn’t just cut him out of her life because she promised her mom she wouldn’t. She was torn up about what to do. Had I had my group going back then this would have been a great topic to bring. I would have coached her but what we all could have taken away from it!

Other topics include:

What signs have you gotten from your mother. What do you think she was trying to tell you?

In what ways do you honor your mother?

If you could have five more minutes with your mom, what question would you ask her?

Exercise: Write a letter to your mom ( you can share it with the group or keep it for yourself).

I work full time as a call center quality coach manager and having full-time clients nightly after work was getting to be too much. I decided that I wanted to shift my focus on my business from individual clients seeking happiness to groups of daughters without moms. It was one of the best decisions I ever made.”

Visit Karen Regan’s site at www.daughterswithoutmoms.com, or contact her at 978-448-2353.

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