May 12, 2006

Mother's Day from a Childfree Perspective

Mother's Day is a great holiday and one in which we can honor our mothers and the impact they have had on our lives. However, for many people, this is a painful holiday. Perhaps because they long to be mothers themselves. For others, their own mother has passed away or they don't have a good relationship. Perhaps they live far away from family.

For the childfree, Mother's Day can be a good opportunity to spend time with our own mothers, thanking them for all they've done for us. But Mother's Day can seem artificial and superfluous since we are not mothers ourselves.

In Christian circles, most churches seem to emphasize mothers on this particular day, making it difficult for the childfree to feel comfortable going to church on this holiday.
Even if not being mothers is a choice that we have made, the over-emphasis on this particular holiday can be difficult to endure.

While honoring our mothers is important, it is also important to remember that not being a mother is fine too. In many ways, we can offer our contributions of being women to society without the motherhood aspect. We all have unique abilities and gifts which we can offer to others. Often our time and money is freed to contribute to important and worthwhile endeavors. For the childfree that like children, being a part of children's lives while not being the parent can be very rewarding. Perhaps we can make a difference in a child's life.

Let's honor our own mothers, but also honor women in general for the many contributions that women bring to society. And remember to use your unique gifts to better the world and community in which you are a part.


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8 comments:

Teri said...

"Perhaps we can make a difference in a child's life."

...or, find a cure for cancer or organize a nieghborhood litter pick-up or start a business.

"Let's honor our own mothers, but also honor women in general for the many contributions that women bring to society."

...and, celebrate World Childfree Day on June 4 (always the first Sunday in June) by posting an original poem or haiku!

Julia said...

I like to think of Mother's Day the same way I think of Veteran's Day-- I appreciate the service that all of our soldiers give for our country, yet I don't grudge anyone their choice of not joining the military.

I appreciate the positive difference all the good mothers out there (including my own) are making in the world. But, like the military, it's not a job everyone is cut out for. And, like the military, I'm glad someone is doing it-- just not me.

Teri said...

Twiga -- Nice use of pull quote! Go team -- Rah!!!

Boxing Tomboy said...

I don't celebrate Mother's Day. While I do send cards to my aunts who have children, that's it. My mother and I do not have a relationshp. I no longer attend church services on Mother's Day; the tributes to moms leave me cold, and I'm tired of people asking me questions every year about how I plan to celebrate with my mom (esp. when most know about the fractured history between her and I). I also feel that women without children are totally ignored on this day.

Teri said...

Boxing Tomboy -- I completely understand. I avoid situations which will cast me in a critical light. For me that involves almost all organized religious circles. I rely on a strong inner moral compass and a very intimate, personal relationship with God than doesn't need fancy windows or a priest to interpret for me.

Let's come together on World Childfree Day...you are working on your haiku aren't you? June 4th...

AlphaGirl said...

Agreed 100%. I went to a Mother's Day skate jam, and even though it was open on us non-moms, there was still a sense of division. It's one of the reasons why I stopped going to church...the Mother's Day tributes were stomach-turning to say the least. Never mind that statistically speaking, many of those "Paragons of womahood" were abusive or neglectful to their kids.
Mother's Day is one of the more annoying and divisive of all the "Hallmark Holidays" out there.

AlphaGirl said...

Oops, looks like this posted at the same time....
Boxing Tomboy, I agree 100% with you sentiments re: Mothers Day!

NikkiJ said...

First, Mother's Day in the UK is in March, so for me that's when I celebrate my own Mum's day.Being several thousand miles apart from each other makes it an interesting situation. On the Canadian Mother's Day we treat my mother-in-law, otherwise, it doesn't really mean a lot to me.

I think though, from a Childfree perspective, that Mother's day completely shuts out women who have decided not to have children and if anything,increases the pressure on them. It's such an opportune time for people to ask that question - "so when are you going to become a mum?" Or "So when are you having your own?" Or "Mustn't leave it too late you know..."

Makes for major discomfort.