Typically, Mother’s Day is projected to be a time of happiness, warmth, and connection. Surrounding this time, Mother’s Day gifts and activities are heavily advertised, and it is assumed that everyone enthusiastically regards this day as one solely dedicated to celebrating their mothers. While there are many people who do fall into this category, for others, this may not necessarily be the case.

For some people, Mother’s Day represents a time of sadness and grief. There could be grief associated with someone having lost their mother or the grieving of a relationship they never had but wish they did. Some people have turbulent maternal relationships and may be estranged for the sake of preserving their mental wellbeing. People in those situations may experience feelings of loneliness and exclusion during Mother’s Day. These already difficult predicaments are further intensified when placed alongside societal pressure to be happy during this time.

Even though society has defined what Mother’s Day should be, there is always space for people to honor their experience and redefine what this day means to them. If you are someone who experiences heavy feelings of sadness and loneliness during Mother’s Day here are some ways to recreate what it means to you:

1. Dedicate the day to self-care. Intentionally engage in things that bring you joy!

This could look like:

  • Scheduling a massage or spa day
  • Taking a day trip to place you’ve been wanting to visit
  • Spending time out in nature
  • Watching a good movie or tv series
  • Trying a new recipe

2. Celebrate someone who inspires you! This could be someone you know personally or admire from afar. Here are some ways for you to do this:

  • Make them a card
  • Dedicate a piece of artwork to them
  • Treat them to dinner or an activity they love
  • Buy a small gift for them

3. Connect with other people. While this time may feel lonely, you do not have to go through it alone. There is support available to you and people for you to connect with who have had similar experiences, as well. Ways you can connect with others are through:

  • Joining a support group
  • Connecting with a counselor
  • Talking to a trusted friend

Those are just a few suggestions, feel free to give them a try or to create something totally different. Regardless of what you choose to do, it is important for you to know that you are valuable and that your experience is honored. Although it may look different than others, it is okay for you to recreate what Mother’s Day means to you.

By, Chante Coppedge, MHC Intern