STFU Parents: Parents With Road Rage on Facebook Terrify Me
If there’s one subject about which parents can be hypocrites, it’s the operation of motor vehicles. We’ve already learned that some parents have a list ofÂ special rulesÂ (that they made up themselves)Â regarding drive-thru lines, but did you know that special rules apply to parents in other car-related areas of life? For instance, I have an entire folder of examples that pertain exclusively toÂ parking drama. Did you know that some people drive huge automobiles that take up an enormous amount of space? Did you also know that some people are shitty at parking and can’t stay within the lines no matter how much (or how little) they try? Lastly, did you know that kids are now required to sit in massive, frequently-recalled, expensive car seats, and getting kids in and out of cars can be tricky? Due to these laws, many people size up their cars, which — shockingly — contributes to all of the poor parking jobs and small-parking-space drama, creating aÂ nightmarish concrete hellscapeÂ in which everyone gets increasingly pissed off UNLESS they’re driving a much smaller car OR they make the apparently difficult decision to park farther away by choice, which 90% of Americans choose not to do. Hence, parents of small kids have a harder time navigating the intricacies of parking, because they neither care to wrestle their children out of their carseats, nor do they wish to park farther than 10 feet from any establishment’s front door. Life, man. It’sÂ ROUGH.
Parents have an especially volatile relationship to driving, because aside from being rushed and stressed doing all the things parents have to do to keep their kids alive and thriving, they’re riddled with worries and lacking in sleep. They’re paranoid about their children being injured AND they’re driving on a sleep-deprived hair trigger. They’re also fully convinced they’re the most important people on the road, and they’ve got the tiny passengers to prove it. Pretty much anything can set off a parent on the road — people cutting them off, tailgating,Â stopping short, etc. — but unlike regular folks who internally tell other drivers to go fuck themselves and move on with their lives, parents take to social mediaÂ to let out all their angerÂ because theirÂ babyÂ might have, hypothetically, been hurt. I’m not saying pissed off drivers who aren’t traveling with children don’t ever go on social media to moan about getting cut off on the highway, but usually when they do it, it’s to let off some steam. When parents do it, it’s because they’re protecting the world’s children (or at least, their children) and the stakes are just that much higher.
Road rage parents are looking for otherÂ angry mama and papa bearsÂ to comeÂ roaring alongside them over some stupid bullshitÂ that most people would agree isn’t worth the time or energyÂ to get worked up overÂ in the first place. And yet, when it comes to their own driving, they let themselves off the hook. If a parent is in a hurry, it’s for a GOOD REASON. If a dad needs toÂ drive “dangerously” to buy his son a discontinued Elmo doll, don’t front. If a mother cuts you off, it could be because she’s hurrying to a preschool graduation, or the grocery store is closing soon and her child is in desperate need of fish sticks. You can’t possibly know! The rule of thumb should always be to assume that parents are carrying precious cargo, so everyone else should understand if a parent drives erratically OR scolds another driver for driving erratically. When you’re transporting future leaders, aka your children, the rules get a little bendy. Y’all know what I mean.
This is all to say that in the hierarchy of driver importance, parents are always going to be The Most Important Ones in their own minds, much like BMW drivers are always going to be the biggest douchebags on the road (#sorrynotsorry), and people who drive large trucks will always come close to mowing down the cars that are half their size just for fun. It’s the basic order of things. So if parents see young people driving poorly or speeding irresponsibly, they’ll doÂ whatever they can to shame them, but when it’s their own child breaking the law, the rules can change instantly in their favor.
C’mon, give this mom a break! She’s just letting her 13-year-old illegally drive her car in a parking lot, is it really that big of a deal? Answer: Probably not, but how would this mom feel if she was driving with her kid in the car and passed a 13-year-old behind the wheel? Would her attitude change?
Let’s check out some examples of parents whose road rage has gotten the better of them — assuming, of course, they don’t act this self-righteous and hostile all the time, which is probably not something any of us should assume. A few of the parents in today’s column sound CRAY. Let’s put this thing in drive and get to know ’em.