Husbands get stuck on the mother of all dilemmas

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

As I write this, there are just four days left to make a decision and the pressure is getting to me.

I blame Anna Jarvis who, in 1907, gave birth to Mother’s Day. Husbands like me have faced the challenge of coming up with just the right gift to show our love and appreciation for the moms in our lives ever since.

It wasn’t a problem when we were kids. We could pick up a rock in the backyard, paint it pink, hand it to our mom on Mother’s Day and she would declare it was the most beautiful rock she had ever seen. Try that with a wife and the rock will wind up bouncing off your noggin.

When we became fathers, we could share the pressure with our kids, although we might have had to help them paint the rocks.

But once the nest empties and the woman in your life is not necessarily the mother of your children, Mother’s Day gets tricky. Are we obligated to also send a gift to former wives to show our appreciation for them bearing our children, even if those children turned out to be louts? And what about stepmothers?

We could just ignore Mother’s Day completely, I suppose. A lot depends on how much we enjoy a week or so of frost. So we better come up with something.

Unfortunately, picking out suitable presents is not one of my strengths; just ask my ex-wife. One year I actually bought her a vacuum cleaner. It’s not necessarily the main reason that wound up being our last year together, but it probably didn’t help.

There seems to be no perfect answer for husbands like me. Candy and flowers show we lack imagination. A gift card means we’re lazy. Something slinky from Victoria’s Secret proves we have one-track minds. Expensive jewelry indicates we probably have a guilty conscience about something.

We could take them out for dinner at a fine restaurant. But most really fine restaurants are closed on Sundays and watching the NBA playoffs at BW3′s might not thrill her.

In search of the best Mother’s Day gift I went online and entered Best Mother’s Day 2022 gifts. The first suggestion that popped up was a 65″ QLED TV. Not a bad idea. Mom could stay home and watch the NBA playoffs.

But I’m leaning toward a suggestion marketed this year by Kentucky Fried Chicken. They’re calling it a “buckquet,” and it consists of a glass vase containing a dozen roses along with eight wooden skewers on which the Colonel’s tenders can be impaled.

Nothing says love and appreciation like a chunk of fried chicken on a stick.

Contact this columnist at