Monday, December 10, 2012

Why I Don't Like the Elf on the Shelf

It's that time of year.  The time of the year when hordes of parents give up on parenting their children in favor of threatening to tell the Jolly Old Elf all about how their kid is not behaving.  In years past, I always hated going to the store this time of year. It never failed that I would hear at least one parent threaten their child with "If you don't listen to me, I will tell Santa that you aren't being good" because apparently the only way to deal with your child is to either bribe them or threaten to tattle on them.  Yup, this bugs me more than I can even begin to articulate.

Now the lack of parental authority is taken a step further and millions of parents are paying to have some ugly looking toy in their house to help them with the tattling on their children department.  Yup, this bugs me.

I will openly admit that we don't do the whole Santa thing around here. The blank looks on my children's faces when strangers ask them if they are excited about Santa coming somewhat cracks me up.  It's not that I am completely against the idea of Santa. But society has taken what was once a small part of the holiday and turned it into the entire reason for the season.  So we leave him out of our celebrations for the most part. Yes, the kids watch movies and read about him in books but he remains simply a fictional character based upon a great saint.  So there is my bias to begin with and I do know it colors my view.  But good grief, parent your child. If they are throwing a fit in the store, pick them up and take them out.  Or put the toy back. Or ground the child. Do something, anything other than threaten to tattle on your child because in case you haven't noticed, the kids are winning and you are left looking like a fool.

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