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Happy Mother's Day To All Mothers

Natalie Staats Reiss, Ph.D. Updated: May 9th 2008

family on the beach This Mother's Day I am struggling with a bit of a guilty conscience. You see, on “the day,” I don't want a fancy present or flowers. Nor do I want to dress up and go to a buffet with crowds of other people. In all honesty, what I really want, more than anything else, is the gift of a day free from mothering responsibilities. In fact, if I had my ultimate dream, I would bid my lovely family farewell and check into a hotel by myself for the weekend (okay, more realistically, one night would be great). I would turn off my cell phone, flip over the “do not disturb” sign, grab a book, get some room service, take a bubble bath, and simply lounge in some really comfy clothes. It's ironic, that on the day that is designed to celebrate mothers, what I would most enjoy is spending some time alone (i.e., without my family).

Apparently, I am not the only mother who feels this way. According to a recent Canadian survey, today's mothers are increasingly stressed out by trying to maintain strong commitments to their families while juggling multiple priorities. They are frequently stressed by taking care of their children's needs, and often go to work sick or exhausted in order to avoid having more tasks pile up or getting behind. Many of the Moms I see, whether they work outside the home or not, are struggling as they try to find a healthy balance between their "Mommy" roles and the other roles that give their lives value and meaning.  

So, on this day designed to celebrate all of the hard work and sacrifice that Mothers everywhere make on behalf of their families, take a step back and ask them what they really want... and tell them I'll meet them in the lobby at noon.  


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