When it comes to what to get your mom for Mother’s Day, chances are you decided on the usual — flowers, bath and body products, candles, etc. And while most mothers will smile and say, ‘Thank you, baby, this is just what I wanted,’ A new survey shows it’s often not what they want.
The survey from Time2Play.com shows what happens when moms stop being polite and start getting real. We asked readers to weigh in and their responses match up. Here are 10 things moms say they want most.
- A nap (Rest, relaxation)
The number one answer? A nap. Moms in 18 states selected rest as what they wanted above everything else. This isn’t surprising since women were spending an average of 28 hours a week doing unpaid caregiving work.
“I work all day, then come home and work some more,” said mother of three young children, Angela Arding. “There are just never enough hours in the day. The best gift for me would just be an opportunity to really rest.”
- The gift of time
“Since my kids have gotten older, they rarely have time for me. The best gift for me would be if they could push pause on their lives for that day and spend it with me,” said mother Lawonda Smith.
For some moms, it’s fun to see what their children are thinking — whether it’s funny or serious — and if you take five to 10 minutes away from sports, games or TV to write your mom a message, she’ll know you think she’s important.
- Dinner out
According to the survey, Moms would also like a break from cooking. “A meal I don’t cook” was the number one pick for moms in 14 states.
“Sometimes I feel like my name is ‘Mom, what’s for dinner,’” said mother of four Lisa Payne. “So not having to cook would make my day.
- Getting the house all to ourselves
Most mothers are technically work-at-home moms because their time is spent serving their families in one way or another. Many moms say they’d love to put their feet up in the comfort of their own living rooms without being asked to cook, clean, find something or break up fights.
“Last year, my husband packed up the kids up after breakfast and didn’t come back until dinnertime. And they brought dinner back. It was absolute Heaven,” said mother of two Vicki Lawson.
- Lounging around a hotel room alone
Even the busiest mom has a long Netflix queue and a desire to log some serious binge-watching hours. There is nothing like lying around in a fuzzy bathrobe all day, eating chocolate-covered strawberries and catching up on the latest season of your favorite guilty pleasure TV show. So book mom a local hotel room for the day (or night) and allow her to indulge in peace.
- Hanging out with our mom
Part of the reason moms are always so busy on Mother’s Day is because they’re also trying to show gratitude and appreciation for their own moms (and usually mother-in-laws, too). That means they don’t get a lot of time to bask in any celebratory glow themselves.
“We want to spend the day at a nice restaurant, spa, or salon with our moms, so neither one of us has to do anything for anybody,” said Payne.
- Pampering ourselves
Pampering means different things to different moms—some of us love a massage, some of us crave a fresh mani and pedi, and some of us just want time with our girlfriends. But here’s a tip: Ask us what we want before getting us a gift card. What counts as pampering for some women is just plain annoying or uncomfortable for others.
“One year my kids got me a gift card to a massage place. I hate massages. They irritate my skin, so it was a complete waste of money,” said Angela Arding. “If the kids, or dad if he’s doing the buying, would just take time to ask, it can make a world of difference.”
- Basking in silence
Getting to spend the whole day alone may not be possible, but some moms say they just want a little peace and quiet. They want a moratorium on whining, complaining, grumbling, or otherwise commenting on how much effort everyone is putting into “mom’s special day,” and we ask that our kids direct all grievances to some other responsible adult during their waking hours.
- Having a family adventure (that we don’t have to plan)
Not all moms want a break from their kids, but even those women would still love a break from the drudgery of parenthood. We want to pack the family up and spend the day doing something unusual, adventurous, or just plain fun—a day trip to somewhere new, ziplining, and kayaking are just some ideas. But we do NOT want to handle any of the planning and logistics, because that would make it just another day of “momming.”
- No mom guilt
What does it say about the state of American motherhood that the ultimate gift for many moms is a day where they don’t have to feel like a mom? Nothing us mothers don’t already know: that every other day of the year, we’re under-supported and overburdened, undervalued and overlooked.
“My first Mother’s Day as a mom of two. I had spent the last two months trying, and failing, to balance caring for my small children and caring for my small business; caring for myself was out of the question. I was spending my days cooking and cleaning and Zoom-schooling, and my nights emailing and scheduling and praying my newborn son would sleep long enough to let me cross just one more item off the to-do list,” said Reshma
“By the time May came around, my prevailing emotion wasn’t exactly gratitude for the gift of motherhood — it was overwhelming, all-encompassing exhaustion. That Mother’s Day, what I wanted most — what I needed most — wasn’t a scented candle, or a day with my kids. What I needed was time to myself; time spent being anything but a mother.”
What mom’s want
Kid-free day 66%
Sleep 30 %
A day off or alone time 30%
A spa day or massage 11 %
A vacation 7 %
A night or weekend alone in a hotel 5 %
A clean home 2 %
Recognition and appreciation 2 %
Someone else making breakfast/breakfast in bed 2 %
Jewelry 2 %