Is it just me, or does it feel like disdain for Mother's Day and Father's Day has been growing in recent years? For what are supposed to be a couple of sweet days of celebration for some people in our life, there's been a storm of backlash, including this latest move from a school that has eliminated both days altogether and replaced them with Family Day.
According to CTV, Astral Drive Elementary School in Nova Scotia has chosen to do away with any projects for (no cute hand-print cards!) or mention of either traditional holiday and instead now celebrates the International Day of Families, so non-traditional families are included. School officials said they did it to avoid children feeling isolated, which is lovely in theory ... but complete overkill in general.
I grew up in a traditional two-parent family, so I don't profess to know how uncomfortable or painful it might be for children who have lost a mother or father, or who have two mothers or two fathers (or any other combination that makes up their unique family) to watch other kids make sentimental gifts for their parents. I do, however, know that life is full of such occasions that make people feel different, feel left out, and feel pain. And that's okay -- that's part of life.
We simply can't keep trying to make schools and the world in general places in which no one will get their feelings hurt. We will never create a perfect utopia that is all-inclusive. It's not possible, nor is it even desirable. We all are different. Different is not bad.
The fact is that children grow and learn from situations like this, and by whitewashing the world to attempt to protect them, we're doing them a disservice. Should teachers be sensitive and work with students on alternative ideas during such specific holidays? Absolutely. But to completely do away with it is not just a progressive sign of the times, it's overkill. It's killing off something that has been a sweet tradition for many families, and it shouldn't be eliminated just to spare the feelings of a few.
Adding a celebration of family is great (the more homemade cards and gifts, the better!), but sacrificing Mother's Day and Father's Day to do so is just too much.
Do you think schools should do away with Mother's Day and Father's Day celebrations?
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