It’s a trap! Advice for dads on Mother’s Day

giftIf you’re a husband and a father, I’m going to share something with you that could save your life: Mother’s Day is Sunday.

Sure, everybody has a mother, but the pressure on husband/dads on Mother’s Day is the greatest. Don’t fall for the whole “Don’t get me anything” or the even more deadly “Don’t spend too much money on me.”

It’s all a ruse.

It’s like when Ralphie in A Christmas Story was blocked by his mom in his quest for his Red Ryder BB-gun and he said he didn’t really want the rifle at all but instead, “I guess I just want some Tinker Toys.”

It’s nothing but lies! Lies, I tell you!

Mother’s Day is a big deal. Ignore this at your peril.

Here’s some vital advice: Get something. And, if you can’t get something expensive, get something thoughtful. “Don’t spend too much on me” doesn’t mean you have to toss out a ton of cash, but if you don’t get something nice, get something meaningful.

And that’s really the key – think about the gift you give. The stereotype of the father getting a last-second present at the convenience store is a stereotype for a reason. As guys, we tend to minimize and forget how important a gesture, particularly on Mother’s Day, is to a wife and mom.

It’s not too late, so start listening and listen hard. You have a few good days left.

Your wife will give you a clear indication of what she wants. Keep your ears open for phrases like, “Gee, it’s been forever since I had a massage” or “I sure do like that lamp.” Another option is to try the old, “Guess what I heard,” method of fishing for ideas. It goes something like – “I saw on Yahoo that lots of moms this year want tech gadgets for Mother’s Day.” Then open up your ears and pay attention to the feedback you’ll get.

If you don’t want to do any of that, or can’t afford a pricey gift, write her a note. It can be on an actual Mother’s Day card, or a regular piece of paper (avoid scrap paper or old receipts dug out of your pocket). The key is, tell her thank you for all she does as a mom — in your own words. Flowery language is good but not required. Just be sincere and give her a much-deserved thank you.

And for goodness sake, don’t forget to check with your kid or kids to make sure they’re doing something for their mom. It can be a homemade gift or something they pick out for themselves.

I remember my daughter picked out a brush for cleaning vegetables that looked like a mushroom for her mom when she was just old enough to understand what Mother’s Day was and I let her buy it. As your kids get older though, it’s easy to forget they’re not making cards and stuff in school. Important safety tip – Moms expect something from their actual kids too. Older kids, particularly girls, can also be good sources for gift ideas.

The bottom line is this: Mother’s Day is about the gesture. It does not have to be huge, or ostentatious, but it needs to be special.

We’ve all seen that father who, on Mother’s Day, get’s something half-baked; it could be expensive but it’s still pretty much a clueless offering. They will say stuff like, “Well I was busy making a living.” or “You’re not ‘my’ mother so why should I care?”

These men are dolts and will get all males killed when women go all Amazon and decide our sex is too dumb to live and gets rid of us.

If you have to ask why the day is so important, let me enlighten you.

Your wife gave you the most wonderful gift you can ever get, your kids. Even as I write that it sounds hokey but it’s true.  Anything you get or do for her on this one day is petty and small in comparison. You can’t really thank her for all she does and likely will do in the future.

But try, for goodness sake, try. She deserves it and your life may depend on it.

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