Mother’s Day — What image are we glorifying?

Like every year, many brands tried to touch the hearts of the Indian audience this Mothers’ Day. They’ve won the hearts of many mothers and even their children. From P&G to Nearbuy, Practo to Vistara, Britannia to; they’ve all shown how a mother is forever sacrificing, careful, thoughtful and how one should feel indebted to them and say it with hugs or by planning a never-before day experience. Thoughtful!

One should of course be forever indebted, but have you noticed what most (not all) of these ads are glorifying? They’re glorifying a mother who has little ambitions for her own self and little space for personal life. Her life is revolving around the ambitions of her children. Her personal space is invaded by creating a life for her children. She is the one cleaning after them, being on time for their beck and call, even suffering harsh behaviour from her very own… All of that is glorified.

Why? Is that how you want mothers to be? Is that the only reason for which you’ll love them and celebrate them? What if a mother is balancing her child and ambitions well? What if she wasn’t giving in to the false tantrums or accepting the rude behaviour. Does she not deserve a day? Then why is it that she doesn’t feature in your ads? Because after all, my agency friends will agree that ads are stories picked from the cultural surroundings. Then why just this face of a mother?

The son depicted here is so old. The family looks well to do as well. And it never dawned upon him to every pamper his mom until Warikoo came knocking on the door? He has even stated “It’s unnatural for her to rest.” Why on earth?

The loving mother here has shown to be not treated great by her daughter and is yet showering her with love and concern. And oh, that’ll be relatable to the audience. Why is that a marketable thing?

The Glitch:
And then came an ad from an agency — The Glitch — this one topped it all because for everyone who has made self-sacrifices whether or not a mother, irrespective of a female — is given the title of a mother. Well, that’s some pressure building on the “mothers”

But then there’s hope…

As always, BIBA dared to be different by showing a daughter who wants her mother to find solace in her own ambition. Now isn’t that a more long-term way of wishing Mothers Day?

Animal Planet India:
To all the moms to pets, this ad does justice by extending the feeling of motherhood to beyond the cliches.

Food for thought..

But is this skewed perspective largely because there are a majority male CMOs? Or is it because “this is a tear-jerker, it’ll work”? Or, the scariest of all, this is acceptable and a true depiction of mothers today?

If we really want to celebrate her, let’s celebrate her as she is. With all shades of grey. Let’s not glorify only one aspect.

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