Rupi Kaur: Mother Modeled Love and Strength

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "Milk and Honey" by Rupi Kaur. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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Who is Rupi Kaur’s mother? How does her relationship with her mother inform the poetry of Rupi Kaur?

To Rupi Kaur, her mother was the one who represented love and strength. Her mother gave her advice on relationships and showed her the power of motherhood.

Read more about Rupi Kaur, her mother, and the lessons learned.

Rupi Kaur: Mother Symbolized Power

As Kaur got older, she began to discover the true meaning of love. Though her trauma initially created significant obstacles, she began to break down those barriers through her recognition of the power of mothers and her first significant relationship.

When her mother was pregnant with her sister, Kaur asked how her mother had gotten so large so quickly. Her father explained that a woman’s body is the closest thing to God on earth because it produces life. This revelation made Kaur see the female body as powerful for the first time in her life.

When she was young, Kaur struggled to understand how a mother could focus all of her love and energy into a child without expecting anything in return. She couldn’t relate to it, but she was intrigued by it. She looked to her loving mother for guidance, especially when it came to love. When discussing romantic relationships, her mother insisted that she marry the type of man that Kaur would be proud to have as a son.

Heartbreak and Mixed Emotions

While her first serious relationship started in a strong place, it deteriorated over the years. She stayed in the relationship for a while because she believed they could solve their differences. When the strains of her relationship began to surface, Kaur’s mother told her that she could do better. To Rupi Kaur, her mother’s advice was unwanted at first. Kaur jumped to her lover’s defense. She believed that their love would be able to endure the issues they were facing. She thought that she would never experience love with anyone else in the way that she experienced it with him. 

However, they ultimately couldn’t salvage their relationship. This resulted in a nasty breakup that caused a variety of emotions to surface. He said that if the universe wanted them to be together, they would get back together. Kaur rejected this premise. She knew that relationships could only thrive if both parties wanted them to. Immediately following the split, she grappled with her mixed feelings and tried to hold onto the self-worth she’d begun to build.

Rupi Kaur: Mother Modeled Love and Strength

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Like what you just read? Read the rest of the world's best book summary and analysis of Rupi Kaur's "Milk and Honey" at Shortform.

Here's what you'll find in our full Milk and Honey summary:

  • How Rupi Kaur suffered sexual assault and oppression as a child
  • What red flags Kaur missed in her toxic relationship
  • How Kaur was able to heal and embrace her femininity

Rina Shah

An avid reader for as long as she can remember, Rina’s love for books began with The Boxcar Children. Her penchant for always having a book nearby has never faded, though her reading tastes have since evolved. Rina reads around 100 books every year, with a fairly even split between fiction and non-fiction. Her favorite genres are memoirs, public health, and locked room mysteries. As an attorney, Rina can’t help analyzing and deconstructing arguments in any book she reads.

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