Too commercial? A nice excuse to say ‘thanks’ to your Dad? Father’s Day seems more controversial than Mother’s Day, perhaps because it doesn’t have the long tradition. I’m unsure how to celebrate either of them…
In case you’d forgotten, it’s Father’s Day this Sunday.
When I was little I’d throw myself into Mother’s Day and Father’s Day with all the enthusiasm of someone who liked making macaroni collages. I’d make presents, pour excessive amounts of glitter onto homemade cards, and proudly present my feeble creations to overly grateful parents.
But now I’m older, I’m a bit neglectful. I’m incredibly grateful to my parents, and am lucky enough not just to have a Mum and a Dad but also a Stepmum and Stepdad – all of whom are very supportive, caring and fun. So why is it that as a grown-up I eschew the idea of cards and gifts, in favour of a phone call?
Saying ‘thanks’ to Dad
I think partly I feel that although I am grateful to my parents, showing it by impulse-buying gifts and sending (usually incredibly cheesy) cards doesn’t quite cut it. The tokens you can buy for Mother’s or Father’s Day just don’t seem like a very ‘adult’ way of expressing parental love. How about a nice meal out? Something a bit more mature?
What’s more, sending cards these days seems a bit forced to me – the people I like get regular emails. If I want to do something really unusual I’ll pick up the phone and call them.
So now that I’m older I’m far more likely to call my Dad on Father’s Day, have a nice chat, then take him out for a curry when he next comes to visit. It just seems more grown up. I asked a few others at Which? HQ to see what they had to say. Florence feels she spoils her mum more:
‘On Mother’s Day, I always make an effort to go and take my Mum out, and give her a gift. Yet when it comes to Father’s Day, I tend to just pop a card in the post and give my Dad a call. It’s not that I like him any less – for some reason I just feel like treating Mum is more expected. Am I just an awful daughter – or do others tend not to bother as much with Father’s Day?’
Pete isn’t expecting a Father’s Day parade:
‘I don’t want to be too downbeat about Father’s Day – but it isn’t exactly high on my agenda. Maybe it’s because I think it is a made up holiday – unlike Mothering Sunday. Having said that, if my toddler son makes me a glue and glitter card at nursery this week, I’ll obviously be delighted. And I fully expect to be up at the crack of dawn celebrating ‘my’ day by watching ‘Thomas the Tank Engine’ or CBeebies with him. But a real Father’s Day treat would be getting a babysitter for Sunday evening – so that we can go out for our wedding anniversary, which falls on the same day…’
Charlotte’s been told not to buy presents:
‘I received an entertaining email from my Dad asking my siblings and I to ‘limit any demonstration of affection or wit to a card’ and not send any presents. As it happened we’d already clubbed together for Mother’s day for a day out for our parents to spend together – although not sure that’s quite the sprit of the day when we probably should spend it with him!’
So it’s a mixed bag – I think people certainly downplay Father’s Day a bit compared to Mother’s Day. I understand why, because Mother’s Day has been around for longer, but it seems a bit unfair on the Dads. After all – don’t they deserve a bit of pampering every now and then?