Childrearing

Why I Hate Braggy Christmas Haul Photos On Social Media

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Ah, the Christmas haul photo. Nothing says “I love consumerism” like posting 175 pictures of your 16-month-old baby with 25 high-end toys they will promptly forget as they demolish the wrapping paper and boxes (and rightfully so, because boxes rock). As a rule, I hate the Christmas haul photo phenomenon. It’s often shameless bragging and it’s damn annoying when it is. A very brief Twitter search shows me that I’m not alone.

Christmas haul

I know, I know. Some of you will furiously comment (perhaps before even reading the post in its entirety) about how you don’t post these shots to brag. You use Facebook as a means to stay in touch with family and friends, and nothing more. But I’m not talking about the people with less than 100 Facey-Space friends who use it to stay in touch with grandma. No, I’m talking about the people with 1000 friends or followers (If you’re on Twitter, because who isn’t? Even my grandma is, and she has more followers than I do.) who post a ton of haul pics. These folks are bragging like eff, and they know it.

I’m talking about the folks with one or two kids, who post Where’s Waldo-esque photos of their kids in a room full of consumeristic trash goodies. Christmas haul photos come in two forms – photos of cool stuff that you (or your kids) are grateful to have and shopping porn. And shopping porn is what I’m talking about here. Yuck.

The whole point of posting this Christmas haul, shopping porn bullshiz is to A.) Brag about how much you LOVE your kids, so therefore you spoil the ever loving hell out of them or B.) make other people feel inadequate or jealous. Both of these things are less than admirable in my eyes. If you do this, mark my words; you suck.

Every year, in spite of myself I am so surprised at how insidious this trend it. It seems that every single year it becomes even more of a thing. Just take a look at the pictures you find under one of the most popular holiday hashtags on Instagram, #PresentsGalore

christmas haul christmas haul christmas haul christmas haul christmas haul

Don’t get me wrong. For all I know, these families all have ten kids. The point isn’t even the amount of gifts (though that certainly doesn’t help) it’s the sharing of it all together. Considering the income disparity that is ever growing, and the inexcusable number of children in poverty, what good comes of shoving your good fortune in other people’s faces, even if it is well-earned? When did photo taking stop being about creating lasting memories for your family and future generations, and start being a tool for oversharing and bragging? Hell, the insanely talented B from STFU Parents has made an entire, successful blog about it. What the eff?

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