What Mom's Want for Mother's Day
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10 Things Moms Really Want for Mother's Day

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What Mom's Want for Mother's Day
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What Moms Actually Need Stores Don't Sell

With Mother's Day just around the corner, you're probably looking for deals on flowers, chocolates, cards, or — if you're feeling ambitious — a knickknack or pendant with some sentimental scribbling. Well, it turns out, you don't know moms. While roses are nice, and it's technically the thought that counts, the stuff that moms really crave cannot be found in stores. From fair pay to recognition for the little things, here's a look at a real-life wish list for moms, especially after a year of the pandemic that made things even more challenging than usual.


Related: I'm a Single Mother. Here's How My Life Has Changed During the Pandemic

Closeup of Money
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Beauty Rest
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Sleep

Some experts recommend getting eight hours sleep nightly for peak mental and physical performance. For new mothers, that's like recommending they find a giant pile of diamonds: It sounds nice, but it's never going to happen. In fact, research shows that nearly half of all new parents get painfully little sleep — around one to three hours uninterrupted, on average. This crush of sleep deprivation strikes just when moms need sleep the most, which is while recovering from having a baby.


Related: 23 Unexpected Things That Might Be Disturbing Your Sleep

Paid Maternity Leave
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Paid Maternity Leave

For mothers lucky enough to get pregnant and have children in the developed world, employment and income are among the few things they don't have to worry about. That's because every single one of the world's wealthy, industrialized countries guarantee paid maternity leave — all except for one: the United States. As of 1993, U.S. women have been entitled to 12 weeks off to care for a new child — but that time off is unpaid. Compare that with 43 paid weeks off in Greece, 20 weeks in Poland, 26 in Ireland, 34 in the Slovak Republic, and 58.6 paid weeks off in Bulgaria. It's one of several benefits common in other countries but which are scarce here.


Related: 17 Ways Women Miss Out on Retirement Savings


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Childcare They Can Afford
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Childcare They Can Trust
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Child Care They Can Trust

Even when moms can afford to foot the bill, they often find that child care is a loosely regulated industry governed by a confusing patchwork of state laws that are often terrifyingly permissive. In several states, for example, lead teachers in child care centers aren't required to have a high school diploma. Fewer than half of U.S. states require caregivers to have child development training.


Related: Why I'm Glad My Kids Are 6 Years Apart

Baby-Proofed Everything
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Baby-Proofed Everything

From dishwashers and latex balloons to bath seats and the very bedding in a baby's crib, new moms soon learn that their houses are filled with death traps that can choke, fall on, and poison their kids. In fact, purses, cords from shades and blinds, power windows, bath oils, and even the family dog all cause countless injuries and many deaths every year.


Related: 14 Ways Parents Waste Money on Kids

A Diaper Fairy
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A Diaper Fairy

The disposable diaper revolutionized baby changing by letting parents toss used diapers in the garbage instead of washing them, reusing them, and occasionally poking their babies with giant safety pins. The tradeoff is that with every diaper tossed, a new one must be bought at an average cost of 20 cents per diaper. With 2,700 diapers soiled per kid in the first year alone, that's an annual cost of $550.


Related: What's in Your Kid's Diaper?

A Back That Isn't Constantly Sore
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A Back That Isn't Constantly Sore

Pregnancy, especially in the later stages, forces bad posture that strains the lower back, which is further taxed by the natural weakening of abdominal muscles during pregnancy. Changes in hormones loosen ligaments and joints, which are put under extra pressure by the weight gain that naturally goes along with the process. The result? Moms everywhere suffer in silence as their backs scream in agony with every movement — and sadly, it rarely stops when the pregnancy ends.


Related: 11 Ways and Accessories to Deal With Back Pain

Help With 'the Invisible Burden'
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Help With 'The Invisible Burden'

In a recent essay, parenting expert, blogger, and super-mom Katie M. McLaughlin wrote about a chore known as "kin keeping," which she called "the invisible burden that leaves moms drained." Kin keeping is the stressful, crucial, and never-ending job of maintaining relationships, appearances, and emotional connections. This critical task affects the whole family, but the responsibility for kin keeping almost always falls on mom. It includes everything from sending thank-you cards and choosing holiday gifts to remembering birthdays and making sure the kids wear the outfit that grandma bought when grandma visits.


Related: 20 Ways a Relationship Can Hurt Your Mental Health

An End to Mom Shaming
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An End to Mom Shaming

Moms have been getting unsolicited advice and even criticism about their parenting for as long as there have been busybodies who are sure they know best. In the age of shares, likes, and retweets, however, it's grown into a monster known as "mom shaming." According to Reader's Digest, mean, vindictive, and public mom shaming can target the clothes your children are wearing, the time of night they're out, or the amount of suntan lotion you put on them. You're most likely to get it online, from other moms, from complete strangers or, sadly, your own mom.


Related: 27 Ways to Spy on Your Kids