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Mother’s Day is a day celebrated once a year to honour the mother of the family and to show gratitude and love for all she may have done for you. It is a day commercialised throughout all the shops and online to encourage giving cards, flowers or gifts to your Mum on Mothering Sunday. Throughout schools, children are encouraged to make handmade cards for their mother to wake up to, to show their appreciation and to show how much their mother means to them.
However, what about those children whose do not have their own mother to wake up to? Or those who have bad memories of their mother or no memories at all? Or for those who would love to be back with their mother but due to care system, they cant. For children whose mother is absent for one reason or another, Mother’s Day becomes one of the hardest days of the year. From the amount of publicity, it simply highlights the fact to children in care that they will not be with their mother on Mother’s Day.
Not only is Mother’s Day difficult for children in care, it can also cause confusion for those who are not sure whether they should celebrate the day with their new Foster Mother. Children may feel guilty or disloyal to their biological mothers. Should I get a card? Should I say Happy Mother’s Day? Should I even acknowledge the day? These could be a few of many thoughts that a child in care process approaching the annual holiday.
However, for many other children in care, the day simply emphasises the help, support and most of all the love, their foster mum has given them. How their foster Mother has changed their life in more ways than one and given them a new childhood full of happy, cherished memories they never thought they would have.
Mother’s Day can be difficult in many ways for a child in care but it can also be the day they get to thank their Foster Mother for simply just being there and helping them through all that they have been through.
If you have a child in care this Mother’s Day, it is important to make the child feel comfortable and have a mutual understanding of the day. This will allow the child to not feel pressured or uncomfortable with Mother’s Day approaching and they won’t be let down by any expectations. If you are aware of the difficult relationship with their Mother then try and talk to them about it and help in any way that you can to ensure Mother’s Day is manageable.
Foster Carers make an incredible difference to children regardless of everything they have been through and the trauma they may have faced. It is important to understand their sensitivity to such holidays and make it uniquely enjoyable for them.