A Pause for Celebration
May 14, 2017 by Elizabeth J. Barton, PhD, Member, National Parents Organization National Board of Directors
It is spring, when we pause for a celebration of new life. I am a
daughter, a stepdaughter, a mother, and a stepmother. On this
beautiful day when we honor sacred role of the caring mother, I am so
grateful for the hours and years of love and nurture I have had from
my mother and from my stepmother. I am so thankful for the
immeasurable joy that my children and stepchildren have brought to me.
I also pause to think about why there is such a vital need for National
I think of the mothers who are faced with not having custody of their
children. If you are a mother fighting for equal access to your
children, remember that you must keep going for the sake of your kids.
Unfortunately, there are no winners, only losers if the children end
up deprived of you or of their father. Your children love both of
their parents and they want you both in their lives.
I think of the divorced, separated, or estranged fathers who are
remembering joyful Mothers’ Days from the past. If you are a father
in a custody dispute with the mother of your children, remember that
despite the ugliness of the battle your are in, they need their mother
and love her, as much as they love you.
I think of the stepmothers, like me. Our love and care are honored
today, too. Stepchildren appreciate both their mother and us, at the
same time. The most important thing I have learned from my journey as
a stepmother is that children have room in their hearts for all of the
loving, caring, and attentive grown ups in their lives.
I think of the parents, siblings, families, and friends of people who
are fighting for the right to be a part of their children’s lives; you
are doing wonderful things by supporting your friends. Remember the
important goal of this fight: for the children to have both of their
parents and every bit of the love and security they need.
I think of a time when society and family courts will all fully support
shared parenting, when everyone will realize how mothers and fathers
are wonderfully complementary and equal.
As we celebrate motherhood, join me in doing the vitally important work of
National Parents Organization: to make sure that children have the
chance for both of their parents to have meaningful roles in their
lives. They need it more so much more than they can say.
Happy Mothers Day from National Parents Organization.