“Motherâ€™s Day is an equal opportunity [very bad] day,” writes Kristine at VSOM. “If youâ€™re not a mom, you wish you were; if you are, you wish you were a better one; if you loved your mom, you miss her; if you donâ€™t get along with your mom, you feel terrible and ungrateful.”
Kristine’s reaction is harsh. Yet it’s not unique — I see similar reactions from Sumer, Bored in Vernal, and other women on the blogs.
Why is Mother’s Day so troubling for some women? Is it the mere act of celebrating the day? (That is, would _any_ celebration be equally painful? Why?) Is the problem in the way that most wards celebrate the day? (If so, what elements of LDS celebration are painful?) Is it the lack of other support during the year? The exclusion of other women? The implicit downplaying of other accomplishments? What?
I’m genuinely curious. I tend to like celebrations, myself — Father’s Day, birthday, Christmas. They’re often cheesy, but they typically don’t make me feel depressed or inadequate. So the reaction is somewhat strange to me, but it’s obviously real and serious, and at least somewhat widespread.
I’d like to understand it better. The visceral reaction has to come from something(s), and I’m not sure what it is. Is there a way to praise and affirm without seeming passive-aggressive, or triggering feelings of inadequacy or depression? (If so — how?)
Also, The pained reactions trouble me because I don’t like the idea of someone being sad at her own party, so to speak. And I don’t think anyone really wants Mother’s Day to be a bad day for LDS women.
So let me ask: What is it that makes you react negatively to Mother’s Day, if anything? How could Mother’s Day be better? How could wards, families, or communities address the concerns of LDS women who feel saddened by the day? What could be done to make Mother’s Day less [very bad], Kristine?