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Graphic: A bouquet of flowers, hugs, pancakes, games and gifts with a card.

Four Things You Don’t Have to Do on Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is a wonderful opportunity to let your mom know how special she is. It’s one time that kids and other family members can really give back for all that mothers do for them.

Given that, here are four things that you really don’t have to do just because it’s Mother’s Day:

  1. Get a gift.
  2. Send flowers.
  3. Be happy all the time.
  4. Let it be the only time you do something nice for your mom.

1. Get a gift.

You don’t always have to get a gift. Moms are humans too. (What? Crazy, I know.) Your mother might have a different love language, other than receiving gifts. According to marriage counselor Dr. Gary Chapman, it could be one of five.

Figure out what your mom’s love language is. Many moms might enjoy spending quality time doing a family activity or having a conversation one-on-one. Other moms may be more excited by receiving hugs and cuddles. If your mom is a words of affirmation person, she might like getting a heartfelt card or text, and if she enjoys acts of service, you could make her a meal.

But if your mom really just likes gifts, feel free to get her something, too.

2. Send flowers.

If you choose to get your mom a gift, you don’t have to get her flowers. Lots of moms like flowers, but not all of them do. My mother-in-law, for example, hates flowers. Even though she likes receiving gifts, she’d rather get pictures of the grandkids or a new book or treat.

Mix it up. Sometimes the best gift is just a bar of chocolate.

3. Be happy all the time, especially if you’re really not.

You don’t have to be happy just because it’s Mother’s Day. It can be a complicated holiday for many reasons. 

Mothers sometimes get overwhelmed with all the attention or feel guilty for not being perfect at the job. People who aren’t close with their can feel distant and sad. Mother’s Day can awaken feelings of grief for people who have lost children or mothers. It can also be a really sad day for those who can’t have kids or wish they could have more.

Whatever you’re feeling this Mother’s Day, it’s okay to feel it.

4. Let it be the only time you do something nice for your mom.

Please of all things, don’t let Mother’s Day be the only day you do things for your mom. Feel free to call her out of the blue sometimes, write her nice notes or just let her know you’re thinking about her.

Three Things to Always Do

Though you don’t have to do everything on Mother’s Day, there are three very important things you should always do:

  1. Think about Mom. If your mom has passed away or she lives far away, it never hurts to send thoughts and prayers her way. And of course, when you can, a phone call is a good option too.
  2. Reach outside yourself. This applies to mothers, children and people who wish they were mothers. Reaching outside yourself and serving someone else will always help you have a better Mother’s Day.
  3. Say “I love you,” in whatever form that takes.

by Abbie Call

Feature image caption: You don’t have to do the same thing for your mom that everyone else is doing for Mother’s Day. You could play games, give hugs, make pancakes or write a heartfelt card. Courtesy of Abbie Call, The Byway.

Read more about Mother’s Day in This Mother’s Day Honor Mothers for All They Are.

Portrait of Abbie Call

Abbie Call – Cannonville/Kirksville, Missouri

Abbie Call is a journalist and editor at The Byway. She graduated in 2022 with a bachelor’s degree in editing and publishing from Brigham Young University. Her favorite topics to write about include anything local, Utah’s megadrought, and mental health and meaning in life. In her free time, she enjoys reading, hanging out with family, quilting and hiking.

Find Abbie on Threads @abbieb.call or contact her at [email protected].