Mommyshame

STFU Parents: Funny Parents On Facebook Are A Holiday Gift To Us All

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Last week, I wrote about faux pas to avoid posting online this holiday season, because some parents aren’t always the brightest bulbs on the Christmas tree. Whether they’re toeing the line of inappropriateness with a stupid Elf doll, or outlining an extensive list of gifts their friends should purchase for their children, many parents unfortunately fall into a predictable trap during the month of December. All year long, they’ve sat idly by, occasionally offering up cheerful slice-of-life anecdotes that make their Facebook buddies smile, until suddenly it’s December and their friends discover that they’ve gone and made a holiday card like this:

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Does this say “Joyeux Noël” or what?! This photo made the rounds this week after being posted on Facebook by the apparently clueless photographer, who’s also friends with the family, and for the most part, the reaction online was, “What the fuck were these parents thinking?” Still, some people pushed back and said they thought the photo was harmless and funny. Several others indicated that “feminists” had a bunch of candy canes lodged up their asses and couldn’t just appreciate a bit of playful, if totally sexist, humor. A few people on Twitter even assured me they would’ve thought the reverse scenario would have been just as funny (with the men tied up instead), which could be true, and which I might even agree with to an extent, except then I got this:

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Nope. This picture’s not that funny. Sure, I can see why the parents might’ve thought a little sadistic Menendez brothers humor might otherwise spice up Elf on the Shelf season on Facebook; I mean, what little boys wouldn’t want to terrorize their parents for forcing them to wear matching pajama sets? But sadly, I remain creeped out in all the wrong ways. I’m now realizing that the only time this “duct taped mouths” scenario was remotely clever was when the kids were the ones being tied up, and the parents made that “Silent Night” joke that went around on Pinterest a few years back. Slightly disturbing? Yes. But it was moderately funny when it was first popular. These current iterations are almost as culturally tone deaf as Michele Fiore’s Christmas Ode to the Second Amendment. In other words: The faux pas are in hearty abundance this year!

Thankfully, a mom on Facebook named Nicki swooped in to save the day with this story about her daughter:

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This may be the best angry letter written by a kid to her parents that I’ve seen. And with that, I knew I needed to devote this week’s column to Mom’s Gold Star holiday submissions that *actually* make me laugh. We’ve seen plenty of misfires and supposed well-intentioned jokes that have landed flat — but what about the parents who ARE being hilarious this holiday season? What about their kids’ #middlefingeremoji hashtags accompanied by drawings of hands flipping their parents the bird? Do they not deserve to be recognized, too? After all, Santa would recognize their efforts above all others’, and I like to live my life according to what Santa would do. Rather than dwell on the outrageous commercialization of Christmas (like I will in an upcoming column!), or on the terrible sexist holiday card ideas some parents have inexplicably executed, today’s column is about those parents whose holiday updates are gifts unto us all. Their posts embody a delightful and humorous holiday spirit, making me feel like I’ve just consumed a tall glass of spiked egg nog. And not a single parent or child has their mouth sealed shut with green and red electrical tape. Let’s check out a festive batch of examples.

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