“With adoptive moms, stepmoms, birth moms, grandmas, and traditional moms all playing a role in a child’s life, the confines of a prototypical Mother’s Day celebration can often leave someone feeling left out.”
Mother’s Day is meant to symbolize a joyous moment shared between children and their moms, but for about 45 percent of those who have undergone a divorce, this holiday can bring about a lot of sore feelings. Blended families typically have parental relationships of all types. With adoptive moms, stepmoms, birth moms, grandmas, and traditional moms all playing a role in a child’s life, the confines of a prototypical Mother’s Day celebration can often leave someone feeling left out. There are ways to navigate these complexities without hurting feelings. Here’s some advice for those in various parental roles to ensure that mothers of all types can feel appreciated this month.
To Single Moms: Mother’s Day can be difficult following a divorce. When you’re married, your husband is typically in charge of helping the kids make a nice breakfast or taking them to buy gifts. Over the years, it’s easy to get used to those traditions. But then, when the first Mother’s Day after your divorce rolls around, you’ll have to start your own traditions. If your kids are with you, celebrate your relationship with them by spending time with them, or find a fun, local activity you can do together. If you’re not able to spend time with them on Mother’s Day, be sure you still make plans to do something that helps you take care of yourself.
To Divorced Dads and Stepmoms: Dads, no matter the relationship with your child’s mom, it’s important that you do all you can to help foster your kids’ relationship with their mother. You can take them shopping to pick out a gift or help them schedule a reservation for brunch. Additionally, we encourage dads to tread lightly if they have remarried, as the roles of mother and stepmother are difficult for both parties. The best way to acknowledge both of these women for the amazing work they put into helping shape your children is to acknowledge your former wife on Mother’s Day and then acknowledge your wife on Stepmother’s Day, which takes place the following Sunday each year. This way, you’re able to show appreciation to your kids’ stepmom without hurting your ex’s feelings. Being a stepparent is every bit as difficult as being a birth parent. It’s wonderful that there is a day dedicated to celebrating that journey.
Birth Mother’s Day: The role of a birth mother who has given up a child for adoption might be the most painful to have to experience every May. Fortunately, there is a day dedicated to women in this position: Birth Mother’s Day, which takes place the Saturday before Mother’s Day each year. It can be celebrated in various ways, depending on an adopted child’s relationship with his or her mom. In any case, it’s an important day to acknowledge, and even informing others that it exists can provide some solace for birth moms.
While Mother’s Day can be somewhat tricky for divorced or blended families, it doesn’t have to be. Keep the other important holidays this month in mind and help your kids celebrate the women who sacrifice so much. From all of us here at Atlanta Divorce Law Group, Happy Mother’s Day!