Christy Turlington Urges Us To Skip Mother’s Day This Year, But I Have No Idea Why

christy turlington mother's dayMany mothers would (secretly) be happy to skip Mother’s Day because they see it as nothing more than a Hallmark holiday. But model-slash-activist Christy Turlington Burns is asking us to skip it for a different reason altogether. She’s launched a “No Mother’s Day” campaign – part of the Every Mother Counts organization she founded in 2010 – aimed at raising awareness of the 360 million women who die each year from from pregnancy or childbirth-related problems. It’s an important message – that goes without saying – but her campaign is totally confusing. In fact, it makes zero sense.

For starters, Turlington Burns and hubs Ed Burns created a short video, which they posted on Facebook and which has already garnered more than 17,000 hits on YouTube. In the video you’ll find a slew of famous moms – Jennifer Connelly, Blythe Danner, Debra Messing, Ann Curry and Dooce blogger Heather Armstrong among them. These women tell viewers that they won’t be answering the phone on Mother’s Day. They won’t be updating their Facebook status, and they won’t be accepting gifts. All this “to show everyone just how much a mother is missed when she is gone.”

Again, the message is meaningful – one that every mother and woman should care about – but I have no clue what these women are asking me to do. In fact, Turlington Burns told The Washington Post that that herself will enjoy a meal with her family – including her children (ages 6 and 8), sister, mother and possibly her mother-in-law, which makes no sense to me (i.e., she won’t answer the phone but she’ll go out for a celebratory meal?).

Turlington Burns also said the “No Mother’s Day” campaign is not intended as an economic protest but rather as a moment of solidarity with many other moms (and a shift in attitude, as well). Once again, I applaud Turlington Burns for trying to help at-risk women – I really do – but I get the impression most people have no clue what she’s on about (my own mother – a very smart woman – called me this morning to tell me she read an article about it in the paper but that she didn’t “get” it).

It’s frustrating, as Turlington Burns is no doubt a passionate woman who wants to make a difference. And I admire her for that! I’m no marketing expert, but even the awesome name alone – “No Mother’s Day” Mother’s Day – is enough to make people take notice. Too bad she couldn’t really explain what it’s all about, as there are no doubt countless mothers, myself included, who’d be happy to help out if only they understood what it is they should be doing.

(Photo: HRC/

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  • Tw123

    After watching the vide, I got the message. But I also know there are many people out there who have already lost their mothers. So they too won’t answer the phone, update their Facebook status, etc..
    There has to be a better way to get the idea and point across that their are thousands of women who die each year from child birth.

    Maybe do something kind of like they do for march of dimes(to raise awareness) for the women. They could even do it in may when more people are thinking about their own moms.

  • ruddyturnstone

    What an idiot!

    How does my Mom not taking my phone call or throwing away the flowers I sent her for Mother’s Day help women who die from preventable childbirth issues? I had my Mom’s high school graduation program, which I came across by accident, framed for Mother’s Day. I guess she should just throw in the trash too?

    My mom is special to me. Everyday of the year. But this one day is set aside to highlight that. What’s wrong with that? I know some folks object to the “commercialization” of the day, but there are better ways to deal with that. For example, call or write or visit your mother, but don’t buy her a present. Make your own card. Cook her dinner rather than take her out to eat. Etc, etc. You don’t have to spend a lot, or any, money,really, to honor your mother on Mother’s Day. If and when my mother predeceases me, I will miss her all the more on Mother’s Day. While we are both alive, I intend to show her my love every year on this day (and,as I said, the rest of the time too) Screw you Christy Turlington Burns!

    Next, denial of proper medical care for mothers is actually NOT a big issue in the developed world. Almost every wealthy country, including the notoriously free market USA, provides some degree of socialized medical care to poor pregnant women. As they should. So, the problem is really confined to the Third World. And it is a real problem. So, do something about it! Start a free hospital in India. Give to on organization that is already doing such work. And, by the way, while you’re at it, you might want to think about broadening your horizons, just a bit. People in the Third World in general suffer from poor or no medical care. Mothers, yes, but also other women. And girls. And boys, And, yeah, men too. They all deserve better, not just mothers. But if a special day is needed to highlight this particular issue, what gives this moron the right to highjack Mother’s Day? Pick another day, stupid.

    Turlington days, as you can see, as a supermodel are long over. I guess she just can’t bear to be out of the limelight. The whole thing is completely half baked anyway. Totally confirms the stereotypel of pretty but dumb models. She says mothers should “disappear” on Mother’s Day. Not answer the phone. Not be around for their kids. But then she, her kids, her sister and her mom plan to go out for dinner on Mother’s Day! So, let me get this straight, all mothers should “boycott” Mother’s Day, but she herself is not.

    Put a sock in it, Christie.

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  • Cindy J Worthley

    This is just plain STUPID…..this is not a way to honor our mothers….