Mother's Day-Need Advice

Updated on May 08, 2011
J.B. asks from Birmingham, AL
24 answers

I am the proud mommy of 2 sweet boys and have been happily married for over 10 years. My husband told me that we are going to his moms house tomorrow after church to celebrate Mother's Day. My mom has to work so we will not be going to her house. I was taken aback because I feel like tomorrow should be about me and not about his mother. I know that he has every right and responsibility to see his mom on Mother's Day. I just don't feel like I should have to go with him and stay all day. I want to go to church and then out to lunch with my husband and 2 children and then spend the rest of the day celebrating and spending time with my boys. I just don't want to go back to her house because we are there frequently. I want to do what I want to do on Mother's Day. Am I being too selfish? Should I just bite the bullet and go with him?
AGAIN: I am not suggesting that he should not go see his mother, so please refrain from criticism that suggests that.

AGAIN: I am not saying he should not see his mother-I just don't want to go. I want to spend time with my children and enjoy the day. When my 2 boys grow up, I expect them to treat the mother of their children with respect and love on Mother's Day. That day will be for their wives. If they do so much as to call me and give me a card I will be thrilled.

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So What Happened?

Thank you all so much for your advice and opinions. I feel compelled to explain a little more in depth why I am "stomping my feet" a little after reading some of your responses. Since our first son was born 4 years ago, he has never made a big deal of Mothers Day. Last year he told me that he had always thought that Mother's Day was about his own mother instead of me. He has bought me a card for 3 years in a row. (I know that some mom's get nothing and I should be grateful.) As the mother of his 2 children, I was hurt. I told to him last year that it is his responsibility to help our boys make me or buy me a little Mother's Day token of appreciation. He said he understood. I guess I felt like it was not asking for a lot to reserve the better part of one day to do what I want to with my family. Thank you for pointing out that I am indeed being selfish.
So, it looks like we will be going to church as a family, then to his mom's house, then I am going to surprise my mom at work. Next year there will be better planning. Thanks again Momma's!

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answers from Birmingham on

What we love to do is go out to dinner the night before or for lunch on Mother's Day. That way they get to see their moms for a delicious lunch and we get treated to a meal too (no cooking/no cleaning). After lunch everyone goes home so there's no endless visiting when a nap is much appreciated from this busy mom! Try planning something that you can all do together and then part easily.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Florence on

Hahahaha! I thought of my Father in law when I read this post! One year for Mother's Day, he put a bunch of apples on sticks and made a bouquet, then he came up to her and told her that for Mother's Day he bought her one dozen long-stemmed, red..... APPLES! Hahaha! She wasn't happy. When she asked him what he had for her, he told her that she wasn't his mother. (He had a point! :))She was a little disappointed, but that's just the way he is about some things. Haha! And if it's any comfort to you, his sons do not have the same idea stuck in their heads. All of them, including my husband are more than sweet to their wives on Mother's Day.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Jacksonville on

I do not think you are being selfish. I think the day should be about you. I would not want to spend Mother's Day at my MIL's house, or even my mother's house. Thankfully we live in different states so that is not an issue for us. I think their husband's should be the ones doing something special for them - and their children should send a card, flowers, make a call, or something like that. Just my opinion on the matter. You are the mother of his children and he should make you a priority on Mother's Day, while still showing love and respect to his own mother.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Redding on

Herein lies the problem.
Millions of mothers thinking "it's MY day!"
Kind of like about a thousand cars thinking they have the right of way when pulling onto the freeway.
Traffic jam.
I just had a grandson. What's wrong with 4 generations all being together to have a nice day as family as opposed to me saying it's my daughter, my grandson, why shouldn't I be the one to decide what happens? Not to mention the fact that I have a younger son still at home.
There is always compromise and personally, I vote for it. I encourage it.
The minute we get married or have children, it doesn't mean our mothers cease to exist or the women who gave birth to our spouses cease to exist.
To's a day with a name and we might as well just try to enjoy it as opposed to jockeying for position. I'm not saying you're doing that, but why does it have to be all or nothing?
If you don't want to go to your mother in law's....don't go.
You say now that you think Mother's Day will be a day for your sons to respect their wives.
I have news for you. All the grown men in my family revere their mothers even after they are married and they married women who do the same. Maybe it's a southern thing. I don't know.

I wish you the best however it works out.

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

There has been plenty of time to make plans, why did you not tell him what you wanted?

I don't get why so many moms are "All about me" on Mother's Day and expect the world to revolve around them.

ALL Mother's can be celebrated. Compromise with your hubby. I grew up spending Mother's Day with my mom, Grandmothers and Aunts who are all special to me.

As for me, it is just another day..... My husband does make reservations at the country club for the famous Mother's Day brunch. Sometimes we take friends, sometimes it is just the 3 of us. I don't expect the day to be all about me. I enjoy my family all year long, not just on 1 day. I don't expect gifts either.

I'm sorry but I just don't get it. If you wanted a big celebration all about you all day long, you should have spoken up a long time ago so hubby could arrange what YOU wanted.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Fort Wayne on

She trumps you because she's older. At least that's the way it is in my family. We go to my mother's house and celebrate with her. We don't do anything fancy, usually just a cook out. I see her about once every 2 weeks and talk to her on the phone at least once a week, often more. I pay my respects to her because she is MY mother. My girls pay their respects to her because she's their grandmother. When my kids have kids, I hope they treat me the same way.

We don't get to spend any time with my husband's mother because she lives clear across the country. However, we do set aside time to call her and wish her a happy Mother's Day.

I think it's a little selfish to (basically) stomp your feet and say "it's MY day! I'm more important that your mother!" And guess what? You're a grown up. If you don't want to go, don't go. Personally, I think you should go and honor the woman that gave birth to and raised the man you married. I think that when you grow older and your kids shift their attention away from you, you're going to be a little more than upset. So, suck it up. Plan a special day with your kids another day. Your MIL isn't going to be around forever.

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answers from Kansas City on

I think you're being a tiny bit selfish. I also wondered why it was just now that plans were being discussed...I suppose it probably has to do with the fact that he's a man and doesn't make plans until the last minute, but still, you could have brought it up, especially since it's so important to you. I think at this point you'll have to form some sort of a compromise. Maybe you can go there and then go out to eat with just your family....or something, just talk it over with him. I think that Mother's Day is about all mothers and that grandmothers and great grandmothers want to see their kids and grandkids on that day too and shouldn't be denied, I certainly wouldn't want that for myself when I'm a grandmother.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We expect them to KNOW, but they are not psychic. His MOTHER is his mother and it's mother's day, so that's where his head is. You're not being selfish, you're being normal, BUT if you didn't TELL him that you'd like mother's day to be a day for YOU. Tell him that you think it's lovely that he want's to give a special day to his mom, and that NEXT weekend, it'll be about YOUR mom,and then you. Next year, plan in advance to have the Sunday for you, and the Saturday for the moms, or whatever works best.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Hum, how would you feel if your boys didn't see you on Mother's Day once they got married and had kids? You said you aren't going to your mom's house because she is working, if she weren't would you be going? If so, is your mom more important than his mom? I'm not trying to be a b!tch or anything, I'm just trying to give a different perspective.

Perhaps you guys can come to a compromise. Go to his moms for a bit after church then back to your house?

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

Can you go to church, out to lunch, and then go to his mother's? Or invite her to lunch with you guys? Really, it should be about both of you - and all the other moms out there. And if it weren't for her, your husband would not be the man that he is today. I don't see where the whole day has to be all about you, or all about her - it can be shared.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Eugene on

Since you asked, yes, I think you are being selfish.

I don't blame you for wanting a chance to be honored as a mom. But this is Mother's Day, not just your day. You can share this day with your MIL and celebrate together. Please don't make your DH feel guilty for wanting to honor his mom tomorrow. Hopefully he wants to see her, not because "he has the right and responsibility", but because he really loves and appreciates her. They say a man will eventually treat his wife like he treats his mother, so I'd say this is a good sign for you.

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answers from Charlotte on


2 moms found this helpful


answers from Las Vegas on

Perhaps you can reach a compromise. I just think that although she maybe your husband's mother, by virtue of the fact that you married him, she is now your mother also. Sure, not a biological mother but one that you should show some appreciation for on mother's day as well. I do agree though, that spending all day at her house would be a bit too much, especially if your idea of celebrating Mother's Day is having a bit of downtime to relax and enjoy your family.

I would suggest that maybe you should invite your MIL to lunch after church so that you both can have some family time and feel special tomorrow, and then part ways after that. I think that would be a fair compromise and a win-win situation for you, you husband and your MIL.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Well it's a little late to be making is this something that you didn't discuss a while ago? I'm of the opinion that you don't stop being a mother and wanting to celebrate mother's day with your kids and grand kids when you become a grandmother or great grandmother, so our plans, by default, always include seeing my mother and both of our grandmothers (my MIL passed away years ago and my FIL and his wife live out of state). If my MIL were alive and living nearby I would include her in our plans.

Your husband should have asked you a while ago what you wanted to do or you should have spoken up sooner. Yes he's being a bit presumptive but with your mom not available, he probably figured that the day was open to see his mom. In the future, plan the weekend in advance so that you all get what you want - if your preference is to spend some time with just your husband and sons, then there is plenty of time to do that AND incorporate visiting his mother and/or your mother. But to claim the whole day for yourself and feel like you have no obligation to honor HIS mother seems a bit selfish to me.

FWIW, we (meaning all of us) usually see my GMIL for dinner on Saturday of Mother's Day weekend and then on Sunday, we have dinner at my mother's house and hour away and then drive an hour in the other direction to my grandmother's house to see her. The kids get me cards and make presents in school and shower me with love but other than that, it's no more *my* day than it was before I became a mom and that's OK. I get to see my kids and feel their love every day of the year. My mother and our grandmothers don't get that privilege, so IMO the day should be about the moms who *don't* get to see their children and grandchildren day in and day out.

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answers from Denver on

I don't think you are being selfish. Maybe you could invite her to come to eat with you?

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answers from Kansas City on

I will be spending lunch with my husband and his mother( I can't stand where we are going, but that's beside the point!). Afterwards, my husband, kids and I, will be doing what I want and then we are taking my mother out for dinner.

I understand that I am not the only one who gets recognition on this day and that one day our mothers won't be around and we will have plenty of mothers days to ourselves. My MIL is 84, so I respect the fact that my husband probably doesn't have too many more years with her.

My husband also asked me last week what I wanted to do for me on this day. I told him what I wanted, knowing that I would be seeing his mom AND my mom also. It isn't just about me!!

I think you should sit down with your husband and talk to him, because he shouldn't have told you what you two are doing, you two should have talked about it. But then again, if you don't ever tell him what you want, then maybe he doesn't know what you'd really like to do. On the other hand, if you are handling it the wrong way, it can backfire on you like it always did for my mom. My mom always thought my dad shouldn't care about mothers day (for his mom) since he was all grown up, so in return, my father wouldn't do anything for my mom on mothers day and tell her she wasn't his mom, so why should he do anything for her. It wasn't right, but her attitude contributed to her treatment. BTW, they are now divorced.

I think we all need to be supportive of the mothers in our families and take time out for each of them, no matter how often you see/talk to them.

Update: I bet you will feel differently than you think when you are older, when you only get a card or a call on mothers day. You will think your DIL's are being selfish. It's easy to justify your feelings now and say you'll do something different later.

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answers from Kansas City on

I didn't read your whole post, but yes you are being a tad selfish, just for the fact that you both have mothers, and want to celebrate them too. Why not go to church, out to lunch, and maybe have dessert with his mother at her house? Take a pie or something. But yes I do agree that the day should be about YOU, but you still have to give a little time to them too.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

You are well within your rights to feel this way. Talk to him, tell him how you feel. Mothers day IMO is supposed to be more about those who still have children at home, that is why we also have grandparents day.

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answers from Pittsburgh on

I agree with you 100%! Today (Saturday) we are seeing my MIL (my mom lives in another state) so that tomorrow is for me. My husband always asks me what I want to do first, which I am thankful for. There have been Mother's day's where we are with my MIL, but it is because I agreed to it first. Hopefully, you get your day to do what you want. Happy Mothers Day!!

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answers from Los Angeles on

Mothers day should be for both of you, you and your MIL. Without her, you wouldnt have your DH, so go, and spend a part of the day with her, and then the rest of the day for you and your family. I dont think Mothers day is really about husbands and wives, its about moms & kids. I love that my DH treats me to Mothers day, but I have an expectation that he do something for his mom, regardless that he is an adult. (I also "expect" any gift, card or flowers to come "from the kids", even if he is the one buying) My first marriage, every Mothers Day was spent at my MIL's and all the moms were celebrated. (**Added, How could I forget, we spent the first part of the day buying flowers & going to the cemetary to visit my step kids mom, which I have continued to take step kids some years since ex Dh passed away) To not go as a family & honor her would be unacceptable. Same for my own mom, I make an effort, even if she isnt in my life, to send a card or flowers etc, because she is still special to me, even if non existant in my life. I would feel bad if I were making a decision as you are, and I think you will too... talk to him, come up with a plan that keeps everyone happy.

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answers from Phoenix on

I get where you're coming from. She's not your mom, she's his mom, and you're a mother yourself. Why can't he take her out to dinner or lunch, so they can get their own special time together? That way everyone gets what they want. Either that, or have him spend Saturday with his mom, and Sunday with you & the boys. I think as long as everyone is flexible, it is workable, as well as all other holidays. Sometimes we split the holiday up & spread it over a few days, so we have time to celebrate with everyone without being rushed.

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answers from Minneapolis on

I would be upset. I can understand him wanting to stop by and drop off a quick gift or hug, but the day should be about you.
What if you took seperate cars to church, you go home and enjoy the silence that moms long for. Let him go on to his moms for a quick visit. Then when he gets home, you can celebrate your mothers day.
I hope you can enjoy the day :-)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chattanooga on

I'm with you... Mother's day is about celebrating mothers and all that they do. When we are kids, we celebrate our mother... but I feel that when you become a mother, then the celebration should be about you. Of course, you still acknowledge your mother, (or his...) and give them some recognition... but the fact is that they are no longer spending all their time being 'mommy' any more. Their kids are grown up. The hard part is over. That doesn't stop them from being a mother, obviously, and they should still be celebrated... BUT the main part of the day should be for mothers who are actively raising children. YOU are the one who is raising and caring for his children, and YOU are the one he should recognise. I would try for a compromise here... Maybe you could go to his mom's house after church and have some celebration with her, and after an hour or so take off and do what YOU want to do. This is your day too!!



answers from Daytona Beach on

Maybe you can do both? Go out to lunch after church and then go to his moms for an hour. Than spend the rest of the day for yourself.

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