Wanting to show mum some special love this Mother's Day?

Then volunteer to do the house work and don't forget to tell her that you love her.

Clinical psychologist and adolescent specialist Rebecca Daly-Peoples said teenagers in particular struggle to show mum they love her in ways she can recognise.

"A lot of teens don't necessarily express love to their parents in an overt way. This can be largely due to the changes and development a teenager goes through during adolescence. Often there can be a disconnect in perceptions between a parent and their teenager.


"It's quite common that a teenager will think they are showing and expressing love towards their parents, but what you'll usually find is mum isn't hearing it as much she would like."

Research by Paper Plus showed many teenagers considered household tasks like emptying the dishwasher a gesture of love, but Ms Daly-Peoples said mothers saw chores as something teens should be doing anyway.

"However, teens voluntarily doing chores or housework is quite significant, it's an 'act of kindness'. So while it might not feel like it as a mum, these are gestures of love for many teens."

Paper Plus CEO Sam Shosanya said the company conducted the survey ahead of Mother's Day to gain insights into how New Zealand teenagers expressed their feelings.

The survey found more than half of Kiwi teens wished they were more open with their feelings about their mums and 39 per cent of teenagers rarely told their mum they love them face-to-face.