It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday March 26. A day when traditionally sons and daughters buy loving cards, flowers and/or chocolates and treat their mother to a lovely day to show how much they care about her.
But it’s a minefield for anyone who has a horrid mother especially if she behaves badly towards you. It can be a stressful time whether you still live at home or have left long ago to make a life of your own.
Be prepared that whatever you do is likely to be wrong and can be seized by your mother as an opportunity to criticise you. Choosing to ignore the day, which after all, is over commercialised, can trigger a row and may be used by your mother as an example of how thoughtless and ungrateful you are for years to come.
If you decide to do something to mark the date, unlike those who have warm loving families and know their mother will love whatever they do for them. a child of a difficult mother needs to carefully weigh up several pros and cons.
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Buying something generous can elicit a comment like: ‘why are you wasting your money when you could save up for a hair cut so that you don’t look such a mess.’ While a more modest gift can evoke; ‘Is that all I’m worth? I always knew you would never please me.’
Even choosing the right card is fraught with problems. For some difficult mothers nothing else will do except a card decorated with hearts and flowers and addressed to ‘the best mother in the word.’
If they have shown you little love or support during and beyond childhood buying a card like that may stick in your throat. In which case it’s best to buy a simply designed card with words that are not too effusive.
The same goes for flowers. The look on your mother’s face will tell you if you have chosen the wrong variety, the bouquet is too small or badly arranged. She may say: ‘don’t you think I’ve got enough work to do without changing the water every day. You are always so thoughtless.’ Or compare it unfavourably with the ‘wonderful bouquet your brother gave me.’
Equally the brand of chocolates you choose may no longer be her favourite or be twisted to become a thoughtless gesture because you should have known she was on a diet.
Whether you decide to mark the day or not, do remember that you don’t have to do what you have always done. You can change both your mind and your behaviour. You are also likely to feel uncomfortable about your decision because of the way your mother behaves. Remind yourself it is not you fault that you cannot please her.