this is for mẹ is for us.

this is for mẹ aims to complement and appreciate diasporic platforms like Diacritics, by creating an alternate space rooted in the feminine and focused on storytelling around mothers, motherlands, mother-tongues and family in order to nurture our diverse roots. When we say family, we refer to the fathers, aunts, uncles, grandmothers, grandfathers, brothers, sisters, cousins and caretakers who raise us, feed us, shelter us, and love us, however imperfectly.

The name of this space is important. The word “mẹ” plays on the English word for self, and the Vietnamese word for mother. This name simultaneously grounds us in our own healing, growth and reflection, whilst paying homage to the womxn and lands that birthed us. We spell womxn with an x to recognise the diversity of womxn and the different ways that people relate to, and identify with, womxnhood and femininity.


Inspired by Ocean Vuong’s letter to his mother in the New York Times, this is for mẹ lives online as a borderless mailbox for Asian identified people to share stories. We then deliver those stories as e-letters, straight to your inbox.