Mental Health

Two Takes on Mother's Day

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Mother's Day is a holiday that is marked world-wide. Countries such as the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, China and Japan, just to name a few, give moms a special day shout-out on the yearly calendar.

Historically, Mother's Day has been a day where children and other family members honor mothers or individuals who are nurturing and caretaking in maternal ways. For some, it's a day of celebration, of expressing one's love and appreciation for a mothering figure. The day is met with happiness and a full heart.

However, for others, Mother's Day is not so easy. It can bring forth sadness, loss and yearning if one's mother has died. Or if a mother has lost a child, it can become an excruciating day filled with grief. Anger and resentment can give way if a person has not had a good relationship with his or her mother. There are many more examples....too many to list in this post.

In my work, landmark days, anniversary dates or holidays of any kind can be especially difficult for anyone who has experienced loss, death or the recognition of toxicity in a relationship. Of all the days in the calendar year, Mother's Day and Father's Day can evoke the most profound emotional responses.

To those of you who struggle with this day, know that you're not alone. Give yourself permission to feel and think whatever may come from within. It's important for your to mother yourself.
References:
Hinton, C. (2004). Silent grief. Portland: New Leaf Press.
Pollock, G. H. (1970). Anniversary reactions, trauma, and mourning. Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 39: 347-371.