Catherine Weston, SOS UK’s Director of Communications and Brand, explains why her own experience of finding Mother’s Day hard led to the creation of shareable social media content for others in a similar position.
On Mother’s Day 2016, both my sister and I received a slightly passive-aggressive text from my mum saying something along the lines of “It’s totally fine you forgot to send me anything for Mother’s Day.” The trouble was: we hadn’t forgotten. For the first time in years, we’d been organised enough to send cards and flowers, and these had all arrived in good time – but SHE had forgotten they’d arrived.
This was the first real sign that my mum had dementia.
Five years on, and she has no idea when her birthday is, let alone Mother’s Day. But she still seems to value motherhood, as she is always asking me if I have kids. And asking if I see my mum. And asking if she’s ever met my mum.
Celebrations like Mother’s Day, birthdays, Christmas or even wedding anniversaries: they’re not happy ones for everyone. Sometimes they are a bittersweet reminder of someone or something you have lost.
For mothers who have tragically lost their children, it’s a hard day. For people struggling to conceive, it can be a hard day. For children who have never known their mother, it can be a hard day.
For the children in SOS’s care, whether or not they are happy and settled, thriving and secure in a loving SOS Family, something like Mother’s Day could still be triggering and potentially upsetting for them if their mother has died, or if they simply can’t be with her for any other reason. We know how valuable it is for them to feel those feelings, to try to move through that loss with the loving support of the people around them. There’s no escaping their loss, but we can hold their hands and show them that they don’t have to go through it alone.
Can you think of someone in your life who has lost their mother? Or no longer speaks to them for whatever reason? Maybe someone close to you is struggling to start a family?
If you know someone who might, for whatever reason, find Mother’s Day hard, why don’t you show them that you care and that they are not alone? Reach out and send them a message telling them you’re thinking of them. Other people in their life might be avoiding them out of fear of upsetting them, so you could make the world of difference on a difficult day.
To show someone you’re there for them, we have created some shareable social messages you can use on Mother’s Day – or any day, for that matter, that you know might be hard for them.
Maybe it’s you who finds the day a difficult one. If you want to tell people that you’re hurting, or you’re struggling, we have messages you can share on social too.
We don’t want the children in our care, or anyone finding a particular day hard, to feel left out or forced to cope with their feelings alone. Holding someone in a place of sadness, and letting them feel what they need to feel, could be a really big step towards them moving on. If you would like to show someone in your life that you are there for them, have a look through our social messages and tell someone special you’re thinking of them.