Kids are gullible. And stupid. And loud. And annoying. And lazy. And way too energetic…
Sorry, lost my train of thought for a second.
The point is, kids will believe anything. Believe me, I know; I’ve tested this. Extensively. And I will continue to test it, both to keep verifying my findings like a proper scientist and because lying to children is so damn entertaining!
At least for a while…
The problem arises later, if they don’t eventually start seeing through your exaggerations and omissions and flat-out untruths. Because if your kids enter adulthood still believing some of the stuff they learned as youngsters, they’re going to be in for a rude awakening.
Here’s a quick sampling of some of the notions of which they’ll eventually need to be disabused.
Five Problematic Childhood Misconceptions
- Santa Claus/the Easter Bunny/the Tooth Fairy/the Boogey-Man/Scientology/Lipstick Lesbians are real. Most kids figure these out pretty early, which is good news, in the long run. Is it a loss of innocence? Maybe, if you believe children are ever innocent to begin with, which I sure as hell don’t. My kid stares at me while he’s pooping his pants. That’s cold-blooded.
- Museums are fun! Yeah, children’s museums are fun, but that’s only because they aren’t actually museums! Real talk? They’re indoor playgrounds. Everything is interactive and hands-on and touchable and exciting. Kids are in for a rude awakening the first time they visit an actual museum and realize that if you go anywhere NEAR the Mona Lisa, never mind even act like maybe you’re going to consider possibly touching it, you will GET TACKLED and then GO TO JAIL.
- Life is fair. Awwwww. Life is only “fair” if you’re a white male. And even then it’s not actually fair, it’s just totally rigged, and if you are a white male and you think it’s fair? You are the fucking problem. So, to recap, depending on your demographics, life is either painfully unfair or you’re the reason it’s painfully unfair. Enjoy your next 75+ years, kids!
- Men wear the pants. My wife didn’t make me type this. I mean, not directly. I just knew I had to, so I did. She doesn’t actually need to tell me to do anything. After eight years of marriage, I’ve internalized it. You will too.
- In the future, we’ll all have flying cars. I’m pretty sure every generation since my great-grandfather’s has believed this bullshit. Guess what? It’s never going to happen, guys. We don’t even have those astronaut pills that contain entire meals. All we have are Lays’ Southern Biscuits and Gravy Potato Chips. And if that’s the future, I don’t want to go to there. So forget about flying cars, because, if anything, we’re all gonna be living on ships soon enough. At least those of us who survive when the world drowns will.
It’s better for everyone if our kids are disabused of those notions as quickly as possible. But there’s one major misconception we should probably make sure they hang onto for a while longer:
- Adults know what they’re doing. Everyone reading this knows that becoming an adult is not some kind of line you cross or designation you earn, it’s just an increasingly higher number of birthdays and a steady collection of bills and soul-crushing responsibilities. We are all faking it.
That’s the one misconception our kids need to believe for as long as possible, or the whole damn jig will be up and we’ll never get them out of our basements. And that’s no good.
I’ve got plans to put a bar down there!
This post originally ran on Scary Mommy