Ask an astrologer: Understanding lifelong relationship after parent dies

Published on: January 19, 2023 6:00 AM EST

Portrait of Cheryl Fair, an astrologer
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My mother passed away recently. I have a lot of mixed emotions about my lifelong relationship with her. What do our charts have to say?

-Virgo




Dear Virgo,

I am sorry for your loss and commend you for looking at the relationship with your mother to understand your life together. You have a Virgo sun, Sagittarius moon and Scorpio ascendant. Your mother had a Pisces sun, Aries moon and Virgo ascendant. Looking at a composite chart that is based on the midpoints between the two individual charts gives us a look at the relationship itself. In a composite chart, we look at the planets in the houses and aspects between the planets. The signs that the planets are in are not used. This method has been used to analyze relationships for over a century and has proved to be accurate and helpful.

The composite sun shows the basic dynamic of the relationship and the most important energies of the combined horoscope. Your composite sun with your mother is in the third house, showing that communications and exchange of opinions were most important between you. This is a placement that favors associations in the communications field or commerce and can have some difficulties in a parent child relationship. The implication here is that the relationship was of the mind, rather than the emotions and that in some ways you were more like siblings than parent/child. You would find each other intellectually stimulating and have some great conversations. The composite sun is trine the composite seventh house Mars, giving the two of you plenty of energy to get things done, easily working toward a common purpose. The sun is also squared Jupiter creating even more of a high energy atmosphere and a tendency to make demands on each other and yourselves that are aimed at improving things. There is a feeling of “too much” with squares to Jupiter. Other people probably got the impression that your relationship was better that it actually was. The composite sun is opposed Uranus in the chart, showing that the relationship caused both of you to be upset quite often. One or both of you would constantly challenge the other ones most cherished ideas, causing an air of rebellion within the relationship.

The composite moon is in the fifth house, sextile the Sun and trine Mercury. A fifth house composite Moon shows that you and your mother had fun together. This is the house of recreation, creative self-expression and children. It doesn’t particularly show that one of you would be the child, but more of a mutual interest in children, such as your child/her grandchild. The easy aspects from the Moon to the Sun and Mercury shows an easy exchange of active roles, with neither of you being dominant. There is an overall intellectual and emotional equality. This placement implies that the two of you understood the balance between emotionality and objectivity and were able to discuss the relationship itself. You could discuss subjects that were interesting to both of you and easily engage in entertaining activities together.

With both Mercury and Uranus in the ninth house, the intellectual side of the relationship is emphasized even more. You sparked each other’s interest in travel, education and ideas about culture, religion and philosophy.

The composite Venus in the tenth house shows that the experience of love in this relationship strongly affected both of your lives and helped both of you know what you wanted to do with your lives. Venus here has several difficult aspects, showing that although a loving relationship, it was not easy for either of you. Saturn opposes Venus in the chart showing that it was difficult for both of you to express feelings of love for each other. The relationship created inhibitions that made you both uncomfortable. Composite Venus is also squared the first house Neptune, showing that you could not see each other or the relationship clearly. Neither of you was able to get a realistic picture of the other and probably vacillated between idealizing the each other and feeling confused about each other. So overall, your intellectual relationship is quite good but you were not clear about how to express your love for one another and felt confined by the expectations of the relationship.

The theme of feeling confined by the relationship is emphasized by a fourth house composite Saturn opposed Venus. Living together was difficult for you both. There was a feeling of distance between you as if you were unable to touch each other on a deeper level. You were likely to have been more comfortable with each other when you did not live together. The reasons for this can be seen in your individual charts. Your mother had natal Saturn in her fifth house of children, showing that being a parent was difficult for her. Her Saturn is squared her Venus, making it difficult for her to express the love she had for her children. Your experience of her is shown by your natal Sagittarius Moon conjunct Saturn. Sagittarius Moon is optimistic and adventurous by nature, but Saturn is a restrictive force requiring seriousness and hard work. There is a mixed message inherent in this planetary position because of the nature of the relationship with your mother.

There are more details that can be seen by further analyzing your individual charts and your composite chart. The explanation I’ve given here does cover the basics. I hope it brings comfort for you to see that the mixed emotions you are feeling are indicated in the charts and are part of a complicated relationship between parent and child.

Best,

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Cheryl