How to acknowledge someone on Mother’s Day who calls your kids her grandkids, but doesn’t really do any mothering? She is my father- in- law’s wife, has no kids of her own, has not been a part of raising any kids and is very minimally involved in my kids lives. She doesn’t keep up with what they’re doing, ask for pictures or even really have much to do with them outside of visits at each other’s homes. She has done some very thoughtful things at times, and while I appreciate and value those things, how do I consider someone a mother who simply isn’t one? It’s not meant to be offensive, it’s just fact. And for the sake of being inclusive, she is a cat mom, so do I go on that? But more importantly, it makes for a very awkward Mother’s Day situation. One year while celebrating my own Mother’s Day as a mother of 3, my father in law calls us and asks if we would call her because she’s feeling bad that she doesn’t have kids and to wish her a happy Mother’s Day (in thought, I guess?) I’m just really not into superficial relationships and I’m having trouble deciding how to play along with this. Am I being irrational? Do I celebrate her just because of her lawful title as “mother in law” even though there’s very minimal substance behind it? Or do I just fake it to make her feel good?
Help a mama out and respond anonymously on our forum. How can I acknowledge my husbands dads wife on Mother's Day?
A card? She’s minimalist… so a card seems minimal
Card and flowers maybe?
Doesn’t hurt to be nice. Get her a plant
Call her, send a card, maybe flowers. Better to keep the peace. Your mother in law sounds worlds better then mine and we still aknowledge her
Happy Mother’s Day to a sweet lady
I think a simple we appreciate mothers day card is nice.
A card and a gift card to her favorite restaurant
A simple call might be nice for her. Maybe she doesn’t get as involved because she’s never had that life before? Not really sure all the details or maybe she feels like because she is the mother in law it’s not her place to get overly involved Maybe you can try and get her more involved and if she doesn’t want too then next Mother’s Day I wouldn’t bother. Again just my opinions.
You could simple have your kids just draw her a picture as well.
Kindness costs nothing
There are step-grandmother and bonus grandmother cards for all occasions. A card is fine I think
You don’t she isn’t a mother and doesn’t act motherly. So she doesn’t get Mother’s Day. It’s simple
Just send her a card and wish her a happy Mother’s Day. You could always invite them over for dinner
Aldi has nice flowers for 5 bucks.
She is a step mother, regardless of how involved or not. I would treat her as any other mother.
To keep the peace take ten minutes out of life get her a card and some sort of gift and call to say happy mother’s day. Maybe she doesn’t do a lot because she doesn’t want to overstep or doesn’t feel like its her place to. Perhaps if she felt more like a grandma she would come around more. I am figuring this mother in law stuff out too lbs.
Give her something from the grandchildren. You don’t have to physically give birth for the role. Maybe a small bouquet of flowers.
Just get her a “have a good day” card. Leave it at that.
Card small store bought flowers cheap ones cause it can turn out to be her favorite and maybe some candy
Well she is your husband’s step-mother. She inherited kids when she married your FIL. So what if she’s never had kids of her own. A simple card and flowers or a plant could go a long way.
I get it. You said ‘she doesn’t have any kids’. So I’m gonna go out on a limb and say:::: she doesn’t know how to ‘invade’ that space. ((If that makes any sense?)) she doesn’t know when/where/how to approach being put in a ‘grandmother/mother’ position if she’s never been those. In todays society where parents have very strict boundaries, she probably doesn’t feel like it’s her place…
If you want her to be more active, then invite her in more… and you could start this Mother’s Day…
Plenty of cat mom stuff out there. A mug with cocoa, tea or coffee is nice. Or like some have said above gift card in a card. It costs nothing to be nice because she is apart of the family and at least she’s not an awful woman correct?
Be nice acknowledge her
Flowers and a card that says happy mothers day… boom the end.
I wouldn’t waste your time on her if she doesn’t get involved with you or the kids then don’t waste your time because if you do she may not appreciate what you and the kids give her. Ask your husband if he wants to get her a card or something but I wouldn’t put alot of effort into it.
When you marry a man or women with kids, no matter the kids age even if they are adults. You take on the role of a step parent.
You never know when an adult kid may need your helpZ
For family love and contentment (regardless if she isn’t totally involved-she MAY feel like the outcast being a a you put it-Father in Law’s wife). It would be the KIND thing to do.
I wonder if subconsciously you are giving her vibes to back off too. Why would you not call her the Stepmom or Step Grandmom? There is more here than you say.
We appreciate you mother in law…
Plant some flowers around her house
She’s a step mom, get her a card or some flowers
Jeesh! Get her a card, candy, flowers, whatever
She is still part of the family
So yes mother in-law
Do something minimal for your father’s sake not for hers
She’s considered your husband’s step mom. My aunt doesn’t have any biological children and her husband has kids from previous relationship. His kids consider my aunt their step mom and his kids’ kids call my aunt Grandma. They celebrate mother’s day. My aunt also has fur babies
Give something from the grand kids if you wanted to there mother day cards for step moms
Maybe your kids can make her a card?
She’s never been a mum before, maybe she’s doing the best she can while trying not to overstep? She might want to be more involved but is letting you take the lead.
My FIL has been married to his wife for almost 15 years and when we announced our pregnancy we did it with mugs saying grandma and grandpa so she could feel involved from the start. Before that she wasn’t a maternal figure at all since she had no children herself, but giving her that title allowed her to step into that role. We gave her permission to live our son and be involved through calling her grandma.
Our actions are a reflection of US not them. What we out out comes back. It’s a weird situation but at the end of the day just focusing in Being a good person and a good role model for kids and just simply play along. Doesn’t have to be extravagant- have the kids make her cards and get a simple bouquet of flowers.
She doesn’t do anything with your kids, doesn’t have kids of her own and didn’t help raise your husband and/or siblings. If your husband wants to get her something, do it. But otherwise I don’t really see a point and there Is and was 0 “mothering” on her end. If anything I’d probably just send a happy mother’s day text at most.
She became a “step mother” to a full grown adult
Maybe a nice bunch of flowers
It costs nothing to wish her a happy Mother’s Day. You could send her a card or flowers. Why not just do something for someone else and make her feel special?
I know the feeling. I’m almost 40, my mom remarried a few years ago and on Father’s day I got a text from her husband berating me for not saying happy fathers day. I was livid. I have a dad. My mom’s husband is not my dad. He has a kid, but is not in their life at all, for a very long time. We’re fine now, he’s a good guy, but I don’t do the superficial relationships either. I do however, send gifts to my dads wife. She helped him raise my little brother, and I honestly see her as another mom.
In your case, a card should suffice.
Maybe a card and a picture of your kids and her cats
What can it hurt to make someone feel good?
Always take advantage of an opportunity to make someone feel good.
Do what you really want to do. Don’t let others rule your true feelings
You don’t HAVE TO include her but your relationship will never grow if you don’t. Just take the first step. It’s not that hard to be a loving person regardless. She’s your husband’s step mom. That would make her your kids grandma. Happy Mother’s Day to her.
Maybe she’s scared to try and be a motherly figure because you seem fixated on the fact she’s technically not. Give her a chance and invite her to some things. You might be surprised what you all could get out of the relationship. What’s it hurt you to be kind and include her.
Giving birth doesn’t make you a mother. Maybe she couldn’t have kids of her own. She probably is very much aware of your resentment towards her and that’s what it reads like resentment. Blood doesn’t make family.
Be kind. She is a part of the family. It doesn’t hurt to send her a card or drop off some flowers or a dessert.
Just send some flowers and a card.
She’s a stepmother regardless. Get her some flowers!!
Mother in law does not a Mother make
Still acknowledge her, since she never had kids of her own this maybe where the stand off is about. She doesn’t understand children, probably never spent long quality time with children and or her past has more to it. Maybe never could have kids?? Hmmm. Mothers day is for your husband to acknowledge her, Grandparents day is for your children to acknowledge her.
Instead of flowers. You could get her some seeds if she is into gardening. I did that a couple of times and my mother was happy. As I couldn’t offer her flowers, as I reside in a different country. I used to do that and bring them over.
You may feel awkward because she isn’t really there for you and the kids. But is a act of kindness and she is a human being and a family member. So, it is always good to pay your respects, even if you don’t feel obligated to it. She is probably of old age and feels lonely.
She is your husband’s stepmom…so yes include her as a mom
It’s MOTHERS Day…
Us grandparents have our own day… lol idk when it is but it’s our day…
So IF your husband sees her as HIS STEP MOM… then yes and I would do something to do with cats… because they do consider them like kids.
Honestly it doesn’t sound it would take much to make her day special… kindness goes along way.
She’s your husbands step mom. Acknowledge her. As something as simple as a card or a small plant.
Speaking as a person who has lost their mom, honor those who are in your life. It doesn’t matter if you feel it’s superficial. If you do this for her, maybe she will feel more like family and be more involved as she’s not wanting to step on toes. Who knows.
I would celebrate her and make her feel good. At the end of the day it’s just being kind. Which we want to be, while modeling that to our kids as well
If you can make someone feel better by simply giving a toughtful word, why not do it? It can be just a congrats or a card made by your kids
The Sunday after Mother’s Day is Stepmother’s Day so maybe organise to do something with her on that day
Honestly, I would make the effort. It costs nothing to be kind. She calls your kids her grandkids which means she is wanting that relationship, maybe she’s feeling a bit of an outsider? My opinion may be the unpopular one but the phone goes both ways and maybe she is not wanting to be over bearing so she is waiting for an invitation to be more than just your husbands dads wife. Is she a newer addition to the family?
Mother’s Day is for mothers. She is not a mother
She might not be a “Mother” in the biological sense and she hasn’t had her own kids, so obviously she isn’t privy to actually knowing how to mother…perhaps instead of holding that against her try and involve her more, if that makes sense. Like don’t wait for her to ask for pics, just send them, make her feel included. My Mum died when I was 5 so I find being a Mother really difficult. At the end of the day she is your Mother in Law, so she deserves acknowledgement.
My step mother doesn’t have kids … I still wish her happy mother’s day and acknowledge her. Why not make someone feel good? You may need her uplifting one day
I have no time for superficial relationships however if someone considers my children their grandchildren and does nice things for them, I would ensure she felt special on Mother’s Day. It doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot of money or go crazy. I would have my kids make her a card and call her to wish her a Happy Mother’s Day. You know from the little things she does for your kids how much even little things are appreciated.
Life’s too short to worry about these things
I wouldn’t be extravagant but some flowers or a plant would be nice
She is still your husband’s step mother
How does your husband feel about it?
You need to honor yourself. If you don’t want treat this woman as a step mother in law then don’t. This is your relationship with her not anyone else’s.
Since it sounds like you guys aren’t close and she isn’t really involved in your kids lives I would just send a quick text saying happy Mother’s Day. Does your husband have any feelings on what you should do and what does she do for you? If he doesn’t and she doesn’t do much for you I think a text is sufficient. And honestly it’s really your husband that should be doing it since it would be his mother figure.
Just forget about mothers day and do something nice for her if you like her and feel inclined. Doesn’t have to have a title.
Flower or plant… card
Life is short, keep the peace and do as FIL wishes - maybe she will open up more if she feels included on such a wonderful day!
Maybe she’s dealing with a lot you don’t know about. Just be as nice to her as possible. Sometimes people don’t mean to be as they seem. It’s the thought that counts… nothing expensive but just try to make her smile. Try to show her better you won’t regret it.
Respect her as If she were your real mother in law…a card and a small gift …lifes to short to be mean. xx
Ignore it . She isn’t your mother or your husbands and never has been a Mother . Mothers Day is for Mothers period
Id just say “happy mothers day” and maybe give her some flowers. How long has she been in your husbands life matters too I think
You spend a lot of time talking about her relationship with your kids. What about her relationship with your husband? Has she been a mother-figure to him? How long has she been in his life? Have your husband send her some flowers. It will make her day and be more appropriate than having your kids do something.
Get her a gift. She doesn’t have kids so maybe she doesn’t know how to relate to them or mother.
It’s your husband’s stepmom… let him deal with it
be kind, some candy or flowers and best wishes
i would still buy her flowers and a card, my mother in law died last year and i always felt that she hated me but in that last month i really found out she didnt , she just had been hurt alot as a child and had learnt how to put her walls up
How does your husband feel? If he agrees maybe just get her flowers or something small and wish her a happy mother’s day. You don’t have to do anything big then just focus on yourself and your kids.
A little kindness goes a long way
I’d buy her a fur mom pic frame
Send her some flowers and have the card simply say “I appreciate you” or something along those line. You said she has been thoughtful before and you appreciated it… you wouldn’t be faking anything and she would still feel included.
If she does not have children, does or has not raised children and isn’t involved as a mother, I’m thinking you don’t celebrate that. You could ask your husband if he wants to get her something for being his step mother, was he a child or young when his father married? Just because you put on a crown doesn’t mean you are celebrated as a queen. Mother’s Day is to celebrate those who loved as mothers, if that isn’t a role she plays then I personally wouldn’t do anything.
Please, acknowledge this woman and wish her a Happy Mother’s Day. In these days where there is so much discord amongst people, this is an excellent moment to reach out to her and teach your children kindness at the same time. Life is way to short to exclude others, who have done no wrong. As this woman doesn’t have children, perhaps she doesn’t know how to connect to children, or perhaps she senses your negative feelings. Get her a lovely card, some flowers or plant and she will be so happy. A little bit of kindness is so simple and something that we should practice.
I would buy her a cat mug or something simple but something she would like. Being nice is always in style.
Don’t judge her especially if she has never had kids. It’s a different world for her. Love her, honor her and show her a Mothers respect.
Regardless. You need to put yourself in her shoes. How would you like to be treated? In this situation.
Regardless if she’s not a mother. Just maybe she wasn’t fortunate to have children.
I understand your dilemma. Some people don’t get the whole idea of family roles… what to do, how to act… Since she’s not your husband’s mother, she might feel weird about stepping into that role. You didn’t say where your husband’s bio mother is now… if she’s deceased or if his parents are divorced. I think what I would do under the circumstances is get her a card and maybe flowers for Mother’s Day. Acknowledge what thoughtful things she does do and maybe she’ll build on that. If your husband’s mother is still living, she may not want him to resent her over-stepping his boundaries, or if not, she may be afraid he’ll think she’s trying to take his mother’s place. I just feel like there’s some confusion there as opposed to really not caring. Until you have reason to believe otherwise, maybe you could cut her some slack.
Flowers and a generic card would be my approach.
It wouldn’t hurt to just do some flowers and a card signed by the family <3 I’m sure she would love it and it’s always nice to help put a smile on someone’s face. Maybe it would help her step more into that grandmother role (don’t have to be blood to be family!). Maybe she’s not super into their lives because she’s nervous about overstepping or crossing a boundary. Show her it’s okay and maybe she will be more apart of their lives
She is your husband’s step-mother. So she is a mom in that sense. Just say happy Mother’s Day because she is a step-mom.
Maybe she could never have kids not that she didn’t want them … kindness goes a long ways
If she is good to your Children and you,out of respect acknowledge her with a card and small gift. I’m sure it would make her happy.