There is a lot of confusion surrounding the husband’s role on mother’s day. To buy or not to buy the wife a gift? Some men are of the opinion that since the wife is not his mother, there is no need to celebrate her on the day, and there are other days in the calendar where husbands have the opportunity to do so such as valentines, birthdays, women’s day or wedding anniversaries. On the other hand, some women believe they deserve to be honoured on the day, since they mothered the husband’s children. The answer to the debate could be simple and straightforward but it is not, because life itself is not simple and straightforward. It depends on how you look at it and why you are doing it. Below are a few pointers to help unpack some of the dynamics surrounding the issue.

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  1. Gifts are not obligations

No one is obliged to buy a gift for anyone for any occasion be it Mother’s Day, Christmas day or Birthdays. Rather, presents are given as heartfelt gestures.  After all they say, it’s the thought that counts. As soon as it becomes obligatory, it is no longer a gift but a payment. To receive something from a loved one is a wonderful feeling, but receiving of gifts or not must not be used as a measure of the value of the relationship. Instead, when received, gifts are to be welcomed with equally heartfelt gratitude.

  1. Not all gifts must be bought

With the commercialization of such days and societal pressures, the anticipation of Mother’s day can be very stressful and financially taxing. Gifts do not necessarily have to be store bought. They can be handmade. It could be a letter, a handcrafted card, breakfast in bed, or giving mom a day off cooking dinner etc.

  1. Celebrate each other every other day

Whilst parenting is hard work, appreciation feels good when it is voluntarily and constantly given; it cannot really be coerced or forced. Appreciation only given on Mother’s day is not good enough; it must be felt every other day of the year. Families must adopt a habit of celebrating each other regardless of what day of the year it is.

  1. Mother’s day is for all mothers

Mother’s day is a celebration honouring the mother of the family, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in society. It could be appreciation for the one who raised you who may not be your biological mom, it could be that you were raised by an aunt or step mother or granny; it could also be the mother of your children, or any mother who inspires you or has shown motherly kindness to you. It’s a day to celebrate all mothers. The wives too are celebrating their mothers or mother figures.

  1. Coordinate your Children’s efforts

If you have small children who cannot make or buy something for their mom, you can help co-ordinate their efforts. This way the mother receives a gift from her husband, on behalf of the children. This also teaches children to appreciate their mother, a practice they will carry into adulthood.

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