Author Says Divorced/Separated Dads Owe Their Exes a Mother’s Day Gift

Canada–This article by Rebecca Eckler, author of Toddlers Gone Wild!, is so offensive in so many ways it’s hard to know where to begin.

Here’s one. Rebecca writes:

“On behalf of my four-year-old, who has a Yahoo account in her name, I recently sent an e-mail to her father, who lives in Alberta.

“‘Hi Daddy,’ I typed, as my daughter was fast asleep. ‘Mommy has been talking about Mother’s Day. I only have 143 pennies in my piggy bank. She’s the best mommy ever. She’s been pretty exhausted. I’d like to get her something nice. Can you help? Love you.’

“It was a slightly pathetic, but possibly cute, way of reminding my daughter’s father about Mother’s Day.

“On what is perhaps the Hallmark holiday of all Hallmark holidays, what’s a single mother to do to get some sort of recognition? It’s certainly not going to come from a child who still licks glue and is too young to understand the concept.

“But modern single mothers, whether they’ve chosen to be single, still get along with the father of their children, or have no contact with the father at all, are finding new ways to make Mother’s Day special (and, in some cases, more fruitful)…

“As for me, the e-mail worked. I’ll be at a spa, thanks to my four-year-old’s request via her mother’s e-mail.”

I love that–mom is so entitled to even more of dad’s money that she brags in the national media about her need to “remind my daughter’s father about Mother’s Day,” as if it’s his problem.

Here’s another:

“All mothers of young children rely on gifts made by someone else. For the single mom, feeling the need for something more than a crumpled card in a knapsack – something that comes with a gift receipt – presents a particular dilemma. You can’t very well hand over $20 to your three year-old to do your shopping.

“So some have learned to lobby on their own behalf.

“‘I’ve drilled it into him,’ says Toronto-based Vanessa Craft, the author of Out of Character, about her three-year-old daughter’s father, who lives in England.

“Growing up, Mother’s Day, like most holidays, had always been recognized in my house. So it’s a big deal. I even remind my daughter’s father that on her birthday I should also get something, for the fact that I gave birth,’ Ms. Craft says.

“‘Her dad knows to make me cards, at the very least, on behalf of our daughter,’ says Ms. Craft, adding, ‘I’ve never had a bad Mother’s Day being a single mom.'”

Huh? Her ex owes her a Mother’s Day gift?

One other note–in both cases (Rebecca Eckler and Vanessa Craft) the children are very young and the fathers live far away. Rebecca dumped the father of her child, to whom she was engaged to be married, for another man. I don’t know what happened in Vanessa’s case, but statistically the odds are good that she was the one who initiated the divorce/breakup. In both cases it was probably the women who moved away. So having already severed most of the loving bonds between the fathers and their little children, the women now feel deprived and entitled to even more from dad.

Here’s a third section:

“Stacey Otis, a single mother of three, says that without a partner there is ‘such a greater connection with your children,’ and that Mother’s Day is always ‘awesome.’

“She celebrates the day at her house, or at one of her siblings’ houses, and has turned it into ‘Family Mother’s Day.’

“Unlike many of my mother friends, who moan about husbands forgetting Mother’s Day entirely, or who complain about partners not even giving them two hours of alone time, Ms. Otis says, ‘My Mother’s Days are always special. When my kids get excited to give me what they made at school, it’s like gold. When you know all you have is each other, it makes the day really special.'”

So Stacey Otis’ kids are better off because they don’t have a dad? That’s odd, since being without a dad greatly increases their chances for most youth pathologies, including drugs, crime, teen pregnancy, and dropouts.

And of course Stacey is better off, because all of her friends’ husbands are louts who spend much of the their time working to support their wives and children. And Stacey’s excessively critical female attitude probably gives you a good clue as to why her and Rebecca’s and Vanessa’s relationships ended, too.

The full article is–get this–Get what you want this Mother’s Day. Twist the ex’s arm (Globe and Mail, 5/6/08). To write a Letter to the Editor of the Globe and Mail about this piece, click on

Thanks to Luc Chagnon, a Canadian reader, for sending the article.

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