A lie-in and an hour alone: what mothers really want for Mother’s Day

mum and daughter with card

But in real life, 90% get up earlier than they want, and 11% take the bins out

A survey of over 1300 Mumsnet users has revealed exactly what mums want on Mother’s Day – and it turns out to be a proper lie-in and some time alone.

When asked how much time alone they’d get on an ‘ideal’ Mother’s Day, 67% specified an hour or more. But when asked how much time alone they actually got on Mother’s Day 2017, just 15% said they’d had an hour or more of blissful solitude.

58% of mothers say they were up earlier than 8am on Mother’s Day last year, despite 90% saying they’d like to lie in later than that. 64% would prefer their partner to make the all-important breakfast-in-bed, and 23% would like their children to do it. But back in the real world, over half (53%) of mums made their own breakfast on Mother’s Day last year.

To emphasise the depressing gap between ideal and reality, mothers don’t get a break from domestic chores either. When asked which mundane household tasks they’d carried out on Mother’s Day last year:

  • 62% said they’d done some cooking;
  • 58% did laundry;
  • 49% did cleaning; and
  • 11% took the bins out.

40% of those who mark the day for their mothers-in-law buy the older woman’s card or gift, although 43% say their spouse does it.

Despite all of this, 66% said that they enjoyed Mother’s Day as a rule. One in five (21%) don’t, citing its commercialisation (39% of those who don’t enjoy it) and feeling under pressure to show how much they’re enjoying themselves (26%). 10% of those who don’t enjoy the day say their own mother is dead, and 10% say they have a bad relationship with their own mother.

Mumsnet CEO Justine Roberts said: “There’s quite a lot of pressure on mothers to be selfless, and it can be difficult for them to ask for what they want, especially if it’s for their early-rising children to go away and take their burnt toast with them. Of course, it’s possible that some mothers cook for relaxation on Mother’s Day – it’s even possible that some enjoy taking the bins out – but it wouldn’t hurt for the nation’s spouses (and children) to assume all domestic responsibilities, for this day at least.”

Read the full data here.