Had enough, yet, of the Mother’s Day marketing? Just a few more days, ladies, and then we can look forward to the distractions caused the barrage of email marketing associated with May 18 — International Museum Day (I kid you not!).
So we have a winner in a very close contest for the Mother’s Day/Infertiles spoof (belated because my guy was out of town).
Annacyclopedia hooked Alex with waffles — influenced, no doubt, by his morning coffee.
At the best brunch joints in town: “Free brunch for all infertiles, past and present. Because nothing says I love you like all-you-can-eat waffles.”
(Thanks to all of our participants and congrats, Annacyclopedia! Please email the address where I can send you the More magazine subscription.)
So I’ve been accumulating quite a few interesting responses to a query I submitted last week to HARO (Help a Reporter Out). I’ll have a longer post for this Sunday. In the meantime, I welcome your answers to this same query:
As marketers rev up their Mother’s Day campaigns, a contingent of women get the cold shoulder or are made to feel like second class citizens (e.g. women who wanted children but couldn’t have them or single women/aunts, etc.). Would like to hear from non-moms. How do you cope/manage through the mom-palooza and mother deification? Do you indulge yourself? Head for hills? Grit your teeth?
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And, if you haven’t heard yet, the newest edition of Exhale is now out. My column explores the woman I’d like to become. I’ve come a long way, but still so much to do, so little time…
(Finally, a happy anniversary to my parents! 48 years of wedded bliss. Seriously these two are like teenagers with their first puppy love, still!)
May 6, 2009 4:43 pm
I just found this site today. I am ashamed to admit that before this year, I never considered the effect of Mother’s Day on so many people… but I now have a very dear friend who cannot have children. She and her husband stopped trying before I knew her. I know that this weekend will be hard for her and we are planning to hang out for awhile on Sunday…I just have no idea what to say…or is better NOT to say anything? We are so close, we talk about literally everything. I don’t want her to think I don’t care, but I really don’t want to make her feel worse. Anyone have some advice?
May 6, 2009 5:37 pm
Yay! I almost never win things! I’m so excited. I’ll send an email shortly with my address.
I plan on celebrating Mother’s Day by honouring some of the babylost mamas and childless/childfree women in my life, in addition to the usual call to my mom and sisters and grandma. Changing the world, one tiny act at a time, thanks to having my consciousness raised by people like you, PJ.
May 6, 2009 5:56 pm
I’m infertile, my mother has passed away, and I can’t stand my mother-in-law. You can only guess how I feel about Mother’s Day. I just try to treat it like any other day and hope they don’t ask all mothers to stand to be honored during church services. I really hate that, but at least our church has gotten better about recognizing that motherhood may not be every woman’s vocation.
May 6, 2009 6:31 pm
This will be my first mothers day while infertile. How do I get it across to others that I don’t feel like dealing with it? Even my own mom makes a huge deal if I don’t grovel over her on mothers day and this year I would rather take my dog out on a long walk somewhere and pretend like it’s just any other ordinary day.
May 6, 2009 6:45 pm
Happy anniversary to your parents! (49 for mine this summer!) My usual Mother’s Day strategy is… avoidance, lol. Dh & I usually visit our daughter at the cemetery & then go to a movie. Sometimes, he will take me shopping for scrapbooking supplies as a treat. His mom died 25+ years ago, & mine is 1,500 miles away, so we (usually) don’t have any family obligations.
This year, however, we have to attend (wait for it…) a BAPTISM. For dh’s stepbrother’s baby. There is no way we can get out of it, so I am just going to have to grit my teeth & do the best I can.
If I had my druthers, however, I would be attending the Pram Push for IVF Funding in downtown Toronto. Details at http://www.conceivabledreams.org/cd/prampush2009.pdf.
To Molly, if you are really close to your friend & will be spending the day with her, why not bring her a bouquet of flowers or some such small gift, with a card? I’ll bet she’d be tickled (I doubt you could make her feel worse). You could say something like you know this is probably a difficult day for her, and you just wanted her to know what a special person she is and how much you value your friendship.
May 7, 2009 12:32 am
Oh! Reading the comments below mine here reminded me — I forgot to tell you, I am half way through your book right now — & loving every page! : ) Full review to come!
May 6, 2009 9:31 pm
Sweet Jeebus, it’s insane how much focus is placed on this hallmark holiday. Irritating. I’ll be working, thankfully, which buys me a free pass from family festivities. Think I’ve landed the best gig around, this working holidays thing!
Plugged your book on Plan B, buddy!!! Can’t wait to read all about your experiences and gather more of your wise insights! 🙂
May 6, 2009 11:08 pm
I try to ignore Mother’s Day. I don’t go to church so I won’t be singled out when they ask the mothers to stand and I don’t go out to eat so I can also avoid the brunches and whatnot. But I will call my mom, which I do every Sunday. I have to vent about my sister, who has 2 grown boys. She lives near my mother and doesn’t let us forget that she takes mom out on Mother’s Day – but once she whined that she “never has celebrated her own Mother’s Day.” I honestly don’t think she knew how much it hurt me when she said that.
May 6, 2009 11:13 pm
I indulge myself, head for the hills and grit my teeth. all of the above.
and this is on the verge of possibly becoming a mother myself, after 6 years trying…
not only do I think of all the childless women on mother’s day — and those of us who lost much wanted children too — I also think of all motherless children/adults who have no one to call or treat on mother’s day. 23 years of spending father’s day alone has shown me that…
May 6, 2009 11:13 pm
Your book arrived in my mailbox today!! Not on the topic . . . but I was too excited not to stop by and tell you . . .
I have thoughts on the topic too . . . I hope to blog about them tomorrow.
May 6, 2009 11:51 pm
Wow, Mother’s Day is a painful holiday for so many people, infertile folks, people who do not have children by choice, people who have lost children, children who have lost mothers, and family members who are estranged from parents and/or children.
So, if all these people hate it, why are we still celebrating it. Because it’s yet another holiday created around a social myth, in this case the glorification of “Motherhood”. Perpetuated by the commercialism and media…sigh. Why do we all beat ourselves up with these ridiculous fabricated holidays. Let’s do away with all of them and just have a federally recognized three day weekend every month. People can celebrate whatever they want, buy whatever crap they don’t need, and hopefully avoid guilt trips and self criticism for not practicing whatever ritual would normally be expected on holidays that we participate in today.
May 7, 2009 12:27 am
May 7, 2009 12:33 am
I wanted to congratulate you on Silent Sorority. I am anxiously awaiting my copy.
May 7, 2009 1:38 am
I am about fifty pages into your book and I love it so far. Thanks!
May 7, 2009 2:02 am
I wrote a post yesterday entitled just that: Mother’s Day is coming – run for the hills!
I’ve been avoiding Mother’s Day for years. I did try attending church the past 2 years. Last year was so awful that we won’t do it again. Same for Father’s Day. My husband didn’t say much, but he was bothered just as much as i was.
I will say my church doesn’t single out mothers, they give flowers to all the women, & they don’t have the mothers stand up.
But between my own mother who was abusive & totally lacking in anything you would desire from a mother & my own childlessness, i’m done with celebrating Mother’s Day. I have 5 cards to send, my mother, my foster mom, husband’s mother, 2 grandmas. So i’m done.
We are literally heading for the hills. We are taking a picnic lunch & going off roading in the mountains. I expect this is one of many to come. I don’t believe motherhood is coming to me.
May 7, 2009 3:47 am
You know, if someone asks me what I’m doing for mother’s day, I’ll just say, my sister and I sent my mom flowers (which we did), and we really hope she realizes they’re hers this year (last year there was a small fiasco). I don’t expect them to be asking about me – I don’t have any kids. I guess I’ve never gotten out of the track of thinking that mother’s day is about MY mom. It even seems strange to me that my friends (with kids) would have mother’s day celebrated for THEM. Let’s be honest, your three-year-old doesn’t consciously appreciate you any day of the year, and she sure isn’t going to buy you flowers, because she’s THREE.
Of course, I’m not trying to belittle the pain of so many infertiles who have been due to be celebrated on this day for so long, I’ve just never felt that my turn was overdue. Frankly, I think a lot of my peace of mind comes from not having cable!
Also, I have to say, and maybe this is one of those I-don’t-know-because-I-haven’t-been-there things, but if I had lost a child (in utero, at two days, two weeks, two months, two years, or two decades), I would think I deserved a “Happy Mother’s Day” at LEAST as much as the next gal.
As it is, though, never having been pregnant at all, my only irritation will be if someone tries to force a flower on me. Screwed up as I am, I’m at peace with where I am right this minute; I REFUSE to be a wanna-be, pretend mommy. I don’t NEED validation that doesn’t apply to me.
May 7, 2009 8:58 am
Call me crazy, but I don’t give a rats arse about mothers day. Am I nuts? It doesn’t really bother me. When I think of or hear about Mother’s day I automatically think about my wonderful Mommy and how I’d like to spoil her, the thought of how I’m not a mother and can’t celebrate the day only crosses my mind when fellow infertiles get down about it and I’m left wondering if I’m not normal?
I dunno, I find it all rather confusing. When taking my Mom and MIL out for lunch and I get offered a rose as well or chocolates, I smile graciously and take it, free chocolates people! 🙂
May 7, 2009 2:41 pm
I think it should just be “Celebrate Women Day” because well, women just rock-and of course we rule the world!
May 7, 2009 5:49 pm
I’m with Misfit. Mother’s Day was always about MY mother, not about me. And we had a great relationship, minus a few of my adolescent years. So when she died 21 years ago of breast cancer, three weeks before Mother’s Day, I walked through stores grumbling at card displays and muttering “Mother’s Day sucks.” A few more Mother’s Days were hard after that one, but after that, it just went in one ear and out the other. So I got Mother’s Day out of my system, and infertility is no worse for me on that day than any other. For what it’s worth!
May 8, 2009 4:33 pm
I just got your book in the mail yesterday. I am very excited to read it. I teased myself with a few random paragraphs and can already tell I am going to like it.
Being a new mother, you would think I would embrace the holiday, but I still hate, hate, hate it. I plan on boycotting it. I keep thinking of a way to mark the holiday that honors the people who wanted and are trying to be mothers instead.
Thanks again for writing your book. I will review it on my blog as soon as I am done.
May 9, 2009 2:11 pm
I can’t wait for Mother’s Day to be OVER WITH.