mother's dayEvery year, on the second Sunday of May, we celebrate Mother's Day. Armed with bouquets of flowers, breakfasts in bed, and homemade cutesy cards, we acknowledge the women who have birthed and raised us (seriously mom, thank you!). But the day is so much more than just celebrating our mothers. And don't get me wrong, that's not in a bad way, because it is an amazing and beyond worthy observance.

It's also about recognizing all the women in our lives who fill motherly roles. But how do you recognize them without overshadowing your own mom? Say, how do you celebrate your step-mother, who has clearly taken on a major role in your family, but isn't your birth mother? Granted, Step-Mother's Day is the Sunday after Mother's Day, but recognizing a mother-figure on actual Mother's Day can still hold so much significance.

What do step-mothers expect? We went straight to the source and found out exactly what it's like to celebrate Mother's Day as a step-mom. Here's what they had to say:

  • "The same because I was a mother prior to being a step-mom. I expect the step-kids to honor their mom and don't expect anything from them. They usually wish me a happy day but they aren't required to."
  • "It's not a big deal if my step-daughter doesn't say anything to me and I don't expect her to feel any sort of motherly feelings towards me."
  • "It's just another Sunday."
  • "My step-son gave me a Mother's Day card the first year I knew him. He was adamant that he was going to give it to me."
  • "I am not expecting anything but I have a feeling she'll call and say something. My dear step-daughter is extraordinarily thoughtful and we are extremely close. She'll actually say things like, "thank you for marrying my dad," and "I really appreciate you taking care of me," out of the blue."
  • "I enjoy my time with my children and my mother. Of course I miss my step-daughter as I do on any other day that she is not with us, but I do not feel as though she should be with me on Mother's Day. That day is for her mom to have with her and for me to have with my kids."
  • "I get a text or call from my step-daughter, 10, but that's it. I don't expect or anticipate it but I do appreciate it when she does."
  • " I don't need Mother's Day. I'm grateful her mother will experience her love and sweetness that day."
  • "My stepkids generally wish me a happy mother's day, but not necessarily as *their* mother, but as *a* mother."
  • "I don't expect anything from the kids and I don't expect them to want to spend time with me on Mother's Day when they have a Mom and it isn't me."
  • "If my step-mother ever makes or gets me something for Mother's Day, I will love it, but I don't expect anything. I think it's my husband's job to show gratitude for everything I do for my step-daughter, and he does."
  • "If my stepkids remember and say something, that's great. If not, that's ok too. I don't expect it and don't plan for it as I'm not their mom. My husband makes sure to let me know he appreciates everything I do for them."

As a step-mother, how do you celebrate? Or, how do your children recognize their step-mother?