From I am That: Talks with Sri Nisagardatta Maharaj, Chapter 52:
A man went to see Sri Nisagadartta. He described a tormented relationship with his mother. He found solace in his work and in spiritual search. Yet he found himself unable to reconcile his feelings of growth with love for his mother. He said to Nisagardatta, “Words are good for shaping feelings; words without feeling are like clothes with no body inside – cold and limp.
This mother of mine – she drained me of all feelings – my sources have run dry….
(I want) simply to love and be loved. My mother was not only not loving, she was also not lovable.”
Nisagardatta lead him to a realization of love:
“Whichever way you put it, unless you love there is no happiness. But does love make you always happy?… Is love merely the expectation of pleasure?”
The man replied, “Of course not. There can be much suffering in love.”
The Master asked, “Then, what is love?
“Is it not a state of being rather than a state of mind? Must you know that you love in order to love? Did you not love your mother unknowingly?
Your craving for her love, for an opportunity to love her, is it not the movement of love?
Is not love as much a part of you, as consciousness of being?
You sought the love of your mother, because you loved her.”
He responded, “But she would not let me!”
Nisagardatta said, “She could not stop you.”