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12th March 2021

WITH Mothering Sunday almost upon us, the shops are full of flowers, chocolates and cards – time-honoured tokens of love given to mothers on this day every year. These gestures bring us, for the most part, pleasure and satisfaction as we get the chance to remind those who have cared for us since we were small, of just how much they mean to us. For those of us lucky enough to still have a mother, and to have a good relationship with her, March 14 is a day of celebration. But what of those facing Mother’s Day without a mum? How do you cope on a day so focused on everything maternal when there is a mum-shaped hole in your own life, an empty seat at the family table? People may not be aware of your mother’s birthday or the anniversary of her death, but on Mother’s Day there is less opportunity to hide away from the onslaught of social media and gift adverts.

Over the past year in particular, many more people may have lost their mother, grandmother, stepmother or other mother figure to Covid-19, as well as other reasons. For these children, adult or small, Mother’s Day can be a distressing reminder of a death and can trigger emotions of grief and sadness. For those whose child has died, Mother’s Day can also be a particularly painful time.

With this in mind, here are some suggestions that may help prepare ahead to get you through Sunday with as little distress as possible:

  • Join an online support forum geared towards the loss of a mother to connect with others in similar situations.
  • Tell a friend you’re struggling (they may avoid discussing your mum for fear of upsetting you) – asking for help is not a sign of weakness. And if you’re that friend, remember the worst thing you can say to a grieving friend is
  • Try listening to the Griefcast podcast where every week Cariad Lloyd invites fellow comedians to discuss the death of a pivotal figure in their life.
  • Apply filters to emails so that any references to Mother’s Day are immediately sent to your junk folder and avoid social media, card shops and any other triggers.
  • Have a simple act of memorial such as lighting a candle, planting a flower in your garden or visiting a place which was special to you if permitted.

Remember to practice self-care and mark the day in a way that’s meaningful to you, even if that means a quiet day on your own. Tovey Bros also offers a free group bereavement support programme called STEPS. If you are struggling with your grief, no matter how long ago your loss occurred, please don’t hesitate to contact us either through Facebook or info@toveybros.co.uk or 01633 266848.

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