Things Make You Go UGH - Gas & Gift Edition

Filed under: Opinions

Welcome to Time Out, the place parents go for witty insight, tongue-in-cheek advice, and calming reassurance from a seasoned parenting veteran who believes laughing together beats sobbing alone when it comes to crayons in the dryer and other hazards of childhood.

Dear T.O.,

Our two-year-old son thinks farting is one of the funniest things ever. How and when should we go about teaching him (and my husband for that matter) that farts are not funny?

Signed,

Stinky's Momma

Dear Stinky's Momma,

I'm afraid you may be fighting an uphill and lifelong battle on this one, Momma.

Hollywood has been banking on the fact that people (males especially!) find burps or farts EXTREMELY funny, using them as tried and true laugh-getters for years on both the large and small screens in animated (see: Shrek, The Lion King, Spongebob Squarepants, etc) as well as non-animated fare (See: Blazing Saddles, Caddyshack, Dumb and Dumber, Austin Powers, Elf, any Jim Carey comedy)

That being said, it IS worth the effort to try and make your children as mannerly with their methane as possible. If you let Junior rip with abandon and giggle yourself, you may all too soon find yourself the mother of a high schooler with nicknames like "Sir ShitsaLot" or "FrankenFarter" who grows up to be a "Hey, pull my finger!" guy.

Breaking kids' pride for public pooting is best attempted well in advance of when they start school, even if it's just preschool. Keeping your eyebrows raised as high will help keep you from smiling while saying, "That is NOT good manners, please say 'excuse me' and go to the <basement/back porch/yard/unpleasant neighbor's house> to do that."

Good luck and when it comes to farts, there's one silver lining- at least the worst ones no one can hear!

Dear T.O.

My childless, unmarried brother keeps giving my children gifts that are either inappropriate for their age or downright dangerous. I've told him, made wish lists, even enlisted the help of my mother, but nothing so far has worked. Any suggestions?

Annoyed

Dear Annoyed,

Oh, easy! The key here is patience.

  1. As soon as the kids open their newest switchblade from Uncle Buck, offer them treats while you "hold" the gift.
  2. Remove gift from sight, chances are the kids will forget all about it.
  3. Sell/trade/donate gift.
  4. Put proceeds from gift into a special account.
  5. When Uncle Buck marries, use money from special account to buy his kids lovely age-appropriate items like a Hungry, Hungry Hippo game, the Fisher-Price popcorn popper on a stick, a real drum set, and so on.
  6. Make sure none of these purchases are dangerous, just really, really loud.
  7. Sit back and enjoy!

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.