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Opposition leader Bill Shorten’s emotional speech about his mum started an outpouring of love for mums everywhere this week. Upset by a tabloid report that claimed he didn’t share the full story of the legal career that his mum Ann Shorten began in her fifties, Shorten set the record straight. He explained the huge sacrifice she made to delay her career dream to raise their family.

Bill Shorten and his mother smiling
Bill Shorten and his mother, Ann, pictured in Mr Shorten's AWU days. Photo: John Donegan

Hundreds of Australians took to the internet with #MyMum this week to do something really awesome - celebrate their mums and what they have overcome. It’s some bloody lovely stuff. And some really sad stories that explore what Australian mums have been up against just to survive, let alone be responsible for a family of humans. That whole thing: “Everyone you know is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind” rings especially true here. And sounds a lot like mum-style wisdom.

Mother’s Day can be hard for anyone, like Shorten, that has lost their mother. It is an important reminder to let your mum know how much you appreciate her. For everyone who’s mum is no longer with them, to remember the best times and be grateful. To hug everyone you love. Being grateful and connecting with them will always make you feel way better.

Check out a few of our favourite #MyMum stories below.


Ming Johanson, an Australian RUOK? Ambassador and digital strategist took on her mum’s strength in her own work.


Rugby league player Joe Williams credits his mother with kickstarting his sports career by backing him, hard. It is clear this bloke (who has spoken really openly about his own battles with depression) learned a lot about courage from his mum.


Hundreds of people shared stories like this about their mums. It is a huge reminder how lucky we are to be young people right now. Yeah, things are still a struggle. But seeing what mums have been through in the past can make you get all teary. What a bunch of legends.

Your mum can be the first person you call when you’re in trouble. She’s often the centre of your support system, what you fall back on when you feel shaky. There’s nothing like that strong tree trunk to lean on. Your “mum” can take many forms. It can be your dad, it can be your best mate. Your aunty. That person you know you can tell anything to. Your big sister. A really cool teacher. You could have two mums, a stepmum, or just a woman you look up to. Having that person, and calling them, and BEING them can literally save a life. It made us realise how important it is to thank our mums, and the humans that always have your back, this Mother’s Day. And every day.