Sandra Butler, Age 79
As I approach my 80th birthday and move into my next decade of candles, I’m delighted to let you know about my newest book, It Never Ends: Mothering Middle-Aged Women written with close friend and colleague Nan Gefen, and published by She Writes Press.
As mothers enter the last decades of our lives, the historic roles we’ve held with our daughters often shift and change in complicated ways. Now that we are no longer central in caring for them as we once were, many women report experiencing a recalibrating of authority, autonomy, and independence.
It Never Ends is a long overdue exploration of the complex challenges and unexpected rewards of aging mothers in their relationships with their midlife daughters. Based on interviews with women between 65 and 85, we illuminate the complex issues of closeness, distance, longing, and need that arise. Mothers reflect upon the ongoing effects of the past on the present, the cultural, familial, and interpersonal conflicts that remain, and the varied and often invisible ways they continue mothering. The book reveals mothers’ courage as they reflect on the mistakes they’ve made, acknowledge their regrets, and search to come to terms with their relationships as they now are.
I’m delighted to join you on these pages and eager to hear your response, thoughts, questions and ideas about how this conversation can move forward.