Opinion: Tears for (pranking) fears

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Doo and I love a laugh at the expense of our four kids. We like to mess with them with statements like, “We don’t do favorites, but you’re third.” Recently, my youngest sister played a doozy of a parenting prank, outlined below in all its glory.

First, some context. Emily and her husband, Kyle, have two sons, ages 6 and 4. Our mother lives seven doors away, and their old live-in babysitter, Kelsey, lives about a mile away. The other night, they were getting ready for bed and could hear the boys goofing around in the bathroom as they brushed their teeth and donned pajamas. After repeated warnings of “Hurry up!” from Kyle, the older one yelled, “Go away! We don’t need you!”

Naturally, Kyle and Emily turned off the lights and hid in the guest bedroom. A few minutes later, the boys emerged, silent at first, then with increasingly alarmed cries of “Mom? Dad? Where are you? This isn’t funny!” Yes, it is! Emily was stifling her giggles to the point of tears.

As fears of abandonment escalated, a plan emerged.

Four-year0ld: “Let’s go to Kelsey’s.”

Six-year-old: “Yeah, good idea.”

Four-year-old, now crying: “But we (sniffle) don’t know how (gulp) to get there!”

Preschool hysteria ensued, but eventually they checked the last door and unearthed the conspirators.

Upon hearing the story, we first congratulated Emily and Kyle. Well played! Then we recognized the cool-under-fire, problem-solving skills of our nephews, though we wondered why they’d failed to consider their much-closer Mamaw, who’s literally around the corner.

Questionable spatial awareness aside though, there’s little better than laughter at a child’s expense.

Peace out.


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