"Great News" and a New Generation of Mother/Daughter Relationships

My mom and I talk a lot. Whether I’m walking to class or coming home from work, I love to call mom just to say hello. Growing up as an only child with a single mother made our relationship one for the books. We have always been extremely close, but there were moments when our friendship made parenting ten times harder for her.

On one of our daily calls last week, she mentioned this show she had started watching on Netflix and how much it reminded her of our relationship. Great News is a sitcom co-produced by Tina Fey that follows the lives of a mother/daughter duo from Secaucus, New Jersey.

Katie is a young professional who works as a news producer at MMN where her 60-year-old mother, Carol, secures an internship as a ploy to spend more time with her daughter. The two already spend virtually every spare moment with one another—whether they are chatting on their morning “wake-up call” or texting constantly throughout the day, they are always in contact. When Carol starts working at MMN with Katie, their relationship becomes quite intense. The two become closer than ever, but fear that their proximity is pulling them apart.

While Great News is a hilarious tale of an intense mother/daughter duo (and I think everyone should watch it!), I believe that it also brings to light a new type of mother/daughter relationship that was impossible before our generation. While my mom and I are in constant contact through technology, we tend to bicker and get on each others’ nerves when we are in close proximity. Being a phone call or a text away lets us both live independently while still having the support of the other person.

So what’s the moral of the story? Mother/daughter relationships are hard. Truly, any and every relationship we have with a caregiver is difficult. While it is often easy to love those who love us, sometimes it can be particularly hard to like them. Our generation is changing the way we define these relationships—contact does not have to be face-to-face for it to be meaningful.

So text your mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, aunt, uncle, sibling, or any other member of the support system you had as a child. Leaving home and heading to college is hard for both of you, and it can be nice just to say hello.