Happy (Good) Mother’s Day

Amber Harris is a school counselor and mother

Annually, around Mother’s Day, I find myself cringing at every sappy flower commercial. I practically rush past the card aisle in the grocery store until I can put it off no longer, and then, duty-bound, I try to find one with sentiments that don’t make me feel like a complete hypocrite.

Mother, your love and thoughtful care, your gentle hands upon my hair … Puke. How about: Mother, your slurred speech and glassy eyes make me feel like I could cry. Upon your breath as I get near, I can tell you’ve been drinking beer! Truthfully, Mother’s Day is a lot more complicated for many of us than Hallmark understands.

I have a friend whose mother married two different men who molested her. When she finally told on the second one, her mom was livid at her for “ruining her life.” Is there a card for that? I’m sorry I ruined your life because you love being that scumbag’s wife. I know, not funny. What is funny is that she’s still married to him and thinks my friend is “immature” because she won’t visit.

So, what are we survivors of “childhoodcaust” supposed to do with this holiday? Why is there no special day for us? No “I’m in Therapy Thanks to My Mother Day”? An industry could be made of selling cards and T-shirts that read: “My mom went to jail, and all I got was this lousy broken rib!”

I know there are a plethora of great, loving moms in the world. But I ask you, on behalf of my clan, why do we have to put up with weeks of soft-focus mush reminding us daily of what we didn’t and don’t have, all to make money for the greeting-card and candy companies? I have some news for all you little Beavers and Wallys: You should be appreciating your good mothers every day! Lucky bastards. Oh, wait! Most of you are probably not even actual bastards. I bet most of you have good fathers, too.

Seriously, at the very least, could we call it Good Mother’s Day? I mean, a whole holiday should be something one has to earn. Martin Luther King Jr. led an entire civil-rights movement, for the love of God! This way, we children of all the crazy, addicted, abusive mothers wouldn’t feel obligated.

C’mon, it’s a compromise. Throw us a bone.

Happy Good Mother’s Day!