Here we are again, ‘celebrating’ another Hallmark holiday. My friend, Martin McMahon tweeted this morning that it might be a good idea to do away with the notion of separate parental celebration days. I’d go even further and suggest that is might be useful to do away with parental celebration days altogether.
Let’s face it – if you need a day set aside to remind you that you have parents that you should be kind to, then that day will not make you a ‘better’ son or daughter. If you don’t have a father or mother worth honouring, then these days have the potential to be the source of much anguish for you. Many of us have neither a father nor a mother to celebrate, so annual reminders (on top of the daily reminders) are unhelpful, to say the least.
Spare a thought, too, for the children at school whose parents are absent. I’ve been an active member of SPARK for about three years now, and I am aware that some children are acutely hurt by their schools’ activities around making cards and gifts for parents who are not part of their lives. I remember my own daughter being very hurt by a teacher asking her, when she was only 7, if she had ever even met her father (the principal took her teacher’s side, so I started homeschooling).
What, really, is the point of ‘Mothers’ Day’ and ‘Fathers’ Day’? Like Valentine’s Day, they just seem like an excuse to encourage people to spend money (that they may or not be able to afford) on things like gifts, cards, and meals out. They can add pressure to already pressurised relationships. They serve, as far as I can see, no useful purpose.
What are your thoughts?