Mother’s Day for stepmoms can cause many uncomfortable feelings to surface, and it’s often a time when a stepmom’s unique role as a conditional parent is most apparent.
Stepmoms deserve appreciation and acknowledgment for the mothering they do, and Mother’s Day is often a time when stepmoms will see mothers being celebrated while they’re left without the kids, without acknowledgment, and without comfort.
Please trust that this is not at all about the stepmom wanting to replace the mother’s role in the family. She simply wants to be celebrated in addition to the mom. It doesn’t have to be a zero sum game; the goal is for both women who do acts of mothering for the children to be acknowledged.
If you’re a stepmom on Mother’s Day, here are three ways to make the most of the day!
Do something fun with your partner.
Often, custody agreements specifically state that children of divorce will be with their mothers on Mother’s Day and their fathers on Father’s Day. Therefore, many stepmoms married to fathers will not see their stepchildren during Mother’s Day.
If you have a kid-free weekend, take advantage of it! Go on a date with your partner, plan a staycation, or choose to stay in and relax. It doesn’t matter what you do as long as you’re with your partner and focused on strengthening your relationship.
Spend Mother’s Day connecting with the one who made you a stepmom to begin with.
Kick your feet up!
My #1 rule on Mother’s Day for stepmom is to say “no” to household chores and responsibilities for the day! (This rule is also applicable to moms, and not just stepmoms.)
Today, let the dishes pile, allow the laundry go unfolded, and take a day to just sit, relax, and focus on something other than responsibilities. They can wait until tomorrow, I promise!
It’s not often that stepmoms and moms get a good break from daily responsibilities, so milk this holiday for all it’s worth and take a well-deserved BREAK, friend!
Plan a Mother’s Day for stepmom celebration when the kids are home.
Just like how we don’t always get to celebrate birthdays and other holidays on the day-of, such is the case with Mother’s Day. But the good news is, we get to assign value to dates on the calendar. There’s nothing inherently special about Mother’s Day weekend except that we declared it to be.
So, pick another date that you’ll get to be celebrated when your stepchildren return home! Plus, the Sunday after Mother’s Day is actually Stepmother’s Day! How cool is that?!
Instead of feeling like you’re competing for the same day to be celebrated as your stepchild’s mom, take advantage of your own day and choose to celebrate then instead.
Feel your feelings, but channel your energy.
I will never tell you that your feelings are wrong or that you need to “suck it up.” That will simply never be the advice that I offer you. So, if you’re feeling hurt, lonely, disappointed, resentful, or any other emotion on Mother’s Day, allow yourself to process those feelings.
But once you’ve processed them, I want you to choose to channel that energy elsewhere. Focus on making the most of the day with the one you love. Think about all of the fun you’ll have on your own special day celebrating. Call an important mother figure in your own life and acknowledge her.
Take back the power from the day and make it your own. You’re too important to be disappointed or hurt all day! You play an instrumental role in your family, sweet friend. Hold your head high, recognize your worth, and make the most of the day!
You’ve got this!
P.S. Is this your first Mother’s Day as a stepmom? I have 6 tips for you!