Most Brits don’t think Mother’s Day is a "proper" special occasion

Matthew SmithHead of Data Journalism
March 07, 2018, 3:10 PM GMT+0

The public has an even lower opinion of Father’s Day

As disorganised Brits across the land dash to the post office to make sure their mums receive their Mother’s Day cards in time for Sunday, many may feel resentful that they have been pressured into the move by greetings card companies who have seriously overemphasised the importance of the celebration.

Americans have a term for such events: “Hallmark Holidays”, due to the perception that the company was inventing new special occasions in order to try and sell more cards.

Now new YouGov Omnibus research reveals that most Brits (53%) believe that Mother’s Day is celebrated more because of pressure from commercial entities than because it is a “proper” special occasion. Only 40% of Brits tend to think that it is is a bona fide day of celebration.

Father’s Day is seen as an even more suspect celebration – six in ten (61%) put its prevalence down to commercial pressure while only a third (32%) feel more that it is a genuine special occasion.

It is worth pointing out that mothers are more likely to see both celebrations as “proper” than fathers, although this will be mostly down to the fact that men in general are less likely to see the special occasions we put to them as being genuinely worthy of celebration.

Unsurprisingly, of the eight special days we put to the public, birthdays (90%), Christmas (80%) and wedding anniversaries (77%) are seen by the overwhelming majority as being sincerely celebrated.

Easter was also seen by most Brits (57%) as an occasion worthy of celebrating, rather than simply one whose importance has been boosted by corporations. However, there is a notable age divide with younger Brits being less convinced by it than older people (35% of 18-24 year olds compared to 70% of those aged 65+).

By contrast, very few Brits see Valentine’s Day or Halloween as proper occasions. Only 14% of people tend to see February 14th’s celebration of love as a bona fide event, while just 12% say the same of All Hallow’s Eve.

Photo: Getty

See the full results here

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