The Hidden Volcano

by Dottie Menkhaus One day, a small lump appeared in the middle of the living room carpet. It was about the size of a golf ball. We had to be careful to not trip over it as we walked through the house. As the days passed it grew larger and...

Continue reading

Inside the World of a Motherless Daughter Teen

by Patricia Kuykendoll A motherless daughter teen recently shared this excerpt from a classroom English writing assignment with me. She calls it Seeing the True Colors of the Person I Once Called Mom. She wanted the normal family but she didn’t have it. She tried for many years to make...

Continue reading

The Comfort of a Mother

by Dottie Menkhaus During this time of global crisis of the Corona virus pandemic, it feels like the world is crashing down around us. The stocks are plunging, everything is closed, grocery store shelves are barren, the workplace looks like a ghost town, mass quarantines and social distancing is everywhere....

Continue reading

A Genealogy of Strong Dysfunctional Women

by Mary Ellen Collins Dysfunction is rooted in generations. Seldom does dysfunction begin in the present but we can trace it in our history. I come from a long line of strong women—dysfunctional, enabling, but strong women. Women who have pushed through their pasts and have created a future. The...

Continue reading

The Best Seat in the House

by Dottie Menkhaus My mother passed away when I was 16, and consequently she has missed all of my achievements in my adult life. She wasn’t at my high school graduation. She wasn’t there to see me graduate with top honors from Cincinnati State. She didn’t see me finally achieve...

Continue reading

Empty Chairs

by Dottie Menkhaus The holiday season is a time to gather together family and friends. It is a joyous time of year, but it can also bring painful reminders that there are some who are no longer here. Our loved ones leave behind an empty chair when they pass on....

Continue reading

‘Frozen II’ Hit Me Hard as a Motherless Daughter

This essay includes spoilers for Disney’s “Frozen II.” by Kirsten Clodfelter Source: NY Times, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/12/opinion/frozen-2-movie.html When I settled in next to my 7-year-old last weekend with a mindbendingly expensive bag of movie theater popcorn and our smuggled-in convenience store candy to watch “Frozen II,” I knew to keep an open...

Continue reading

The Stories My Mom Shared With Me

by Julie Thompson My mom retired after 35 years of being an elementary teacher. As she was ending her teaching career, I was beginning mine. I loved sharing teaching stories with my mom. She could relate to what I was going through, and on those really tough days and weeks,...

Continue reading

55 Years Without a Mother

Fifty-five years. Double nickels. This event fifty-five years ago set me on the course to my destination, the Motherless Daughters Ministry. I was just jumping into the great unknown, because it never came into my mind that I would do this someday. Why would it? My biggest cheerleader and supporter...

Continue reading

Mirror Image

by Dottie Menkhaus Occasionally I will take a moment and stare at myself in a mirror and smile. It has nothing to do with vanity. Sometimes when I catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror, I see my mother. As time marches on, I start to see the same...

Continue reading