WTF, Preschool?

WARNING: There will be F bombs forthcoming.  We are all adults, so I won’t be offended if you take today off from reading my blog if F bombs aren’t your thing.  I hope you won’t be offended if I just get this fucking post started.

Ahem.

I’ve been very patient with you, Preschool, and all the changes you’ve ushered into my life.

Stole my baby girl’s naps? Fine.  I forgive you, Preschool.  (Technically, that may have been my fault, since I signed her up for the afternoon class.)

Forced me to traverse up and down a monstrously annoying street four times a day, often trying to race home before Simon falls asleep in his car seat (which would mean zero free time for me, since a car nap precludes a bona fide crib nap)? I have a big heart, so again, forgiveness.

But for the love of Graham cracker pie crust, I have to draw the line somewhere.

Did you know that suddenly my daughter thinks the world is divided into “girl things” and “boy things”? We didn’t teach her that.  That’s the product of good, old-fashioned schooling, and I’m pissed about it.  “Mama, I don’t like football, because it’s for boys.”  Really?  I’ve tried to stem this gendered tide, but it’s not working.  “Why don’t you dislike football because it exploits college athletes or sacrifices men’s health and safety in the service of the almighty dollar? Or because you think tailgating is unsanitary? Let’s not make this about gender, honey.”  As mentioned above, my efforts are not yielding results.

See this? A girl with a "Spiderperson" hat on.  Gender neutral, people.

See this? A girl with a “Spiderperson” hat on. Gender neutral, people.

And let’s talk about money.  Preschool, you are so fucking greedy.  How many times have you asked me for money in the past 3 months? How about the last week?  Money for the teachers’ holiday gifts. Money for the potluck.  Money for the annual giving campaign.  Money for the scholarship fund. Money for the book drive.  HELLO? Remember those fat checks I write you– those are money too– negotiable instruments if you want to get technical.  Let’s try something super fun: You go one week without asking me for more money, and I will go one week without fantasizing about stabbing you in the carotid artery.  Deal?

Also, who’s the NRA mole who taught my daughter about “shooters”?  Yes, we are one of those families who wish to shield our kids from violence for as long as possible. I know, I know, how fucking socialist of us to not sit them down to watch Law & Order Special Victim’s Unit.  My kid now has an unmistakable gesture for guns.  She’s three.  Couldn’t that have waited?

Preschool, you are KILLING ME.

Also awesome? The escalation of instances where my daughter uses the word “poopy” and “chicken butt” in her everyday speech.  I have repeatedly told her if she wanted to use those words, she had to go to the bathroom.  And, that’s why she routinely excuses herself from the dinner table, runs to the bathroom, and sings herself a song all about “poopy” and “pee pee.”  When I ask her what she is doing, she answers, “You said I can only use those words in the bathroom, so I am singing my poopy song on the bathroom.”

Yeah.  Thanks for that, Preschool.  You asshole.

The only thing I can think of that’s worse than these developments are those that would result from homeschooling.  So, yes, Preschool, you have all the cards here.  Thanks for being so cool about it.

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58 thoughts on “WTF, Preschool?

  1. Hahahaha “negotiable instruments.” Brings back very faint memories of when I didn’t learn commercial paper for the New York Bar Exam. But seriously? You would think pre-schools would be a little more enlightened in this day and age. Also, we don’t even have kids yet and I have nightmares about tuition.

  2. What’s worse than forking over the moolah? Being the room mom that has to ask. Ain’t going to be that dumb ever again. My PTA had the temerity to ask me to calls folks who hadn’t contributed to the annual fund. I drew a big, ugly line there. Oh hale no!

  3. It’s a sad reality that once our kids leave our family bubbles to venture out solo into the world of “other people” they’re going to pick up behaviors, language and info we would rather they didn’t. The kindergarten school bus was a real wake up call for me. And the money? Amen to that, sista. My kids’ preschool asked the kids to do fund raising to enhance the funds for the curriculum. WTF? What about the checks I wrote for their fancy curriculum. My four year old doesn’t need to be fluent in Italian. Loved this!

  4. BWAHAHAHAHA! OMG…so, so true. I’d love to tell you to hang on because it gets better, but it only gets worse. I have a 7th grader and a 3rd grader and I’m still getting hit up for money every time I turn around–even larger quantities. And the things they learn from other kids at school would curl your hair–especially if that child has older siblings. Definitely makes me stabby.
    Love the Spider Man Hat!!

  5. I HATE the “girl toys”, “boy toys” thing! (Though I am juvenile enough to chuckle in my head every time my daughter says “boy toys”, ’cause I’m 12.) Someday they’re going to find me in the Target toy department with an exploded head because it makes me furious every time my daughter only wants to go to the “girls’ aisle” or thinks she can’t go down the “boys’ aisle”. I didn’t teach her this. I don’t blame her teachers, though. I’m convinced it’s some of the older girls she plays with at preschool.

    Fortunately, her preschool doesn’t do fundraisers, only Scholastic Book sales, and I’m all over that. However, my son is in kindergarten and we have already had 4 fundraisers. We have participated in two.

  6. I blame the other kids’ fucked up parents. They insert that bullshit and it just grows and takes over. The boy came home and refused to continue playing with his sisters’ dolls (dolls that the week before were his babies too. Oh, HELL NO. I’m not buying no damn trucks just because somebody else’s kid has told him boys don’t play with dolls. Boys totally play with dolls. Let the doll drive the truck!)

    Whoo boy I’m a poopy potty mouth today. Sorry.

  7. OMG i love that she excuses herself to go to the bathroom to sing her poopy songs! :))))
    my girl’s been in daycare since she was 9 weeks old and turned into THE girliest girl ever. i hate it and i know it’s a result of her friends whose parents shove pink princess crap down their daughters throats, but i’ve finally relented and just let her be her and like what she likes. i’ll even let her watch Princess movies (BRAVE is badass and not pink and frilly like) but i absolutely draw the line at allowing Dora to be on our TV. not that Dora has anything to do with your post…

    • I am mixed on Dora. The stupid midriff shirt kills me, but the exploring seems fun. I am pushing Hello Kitty and Olivia as methadone to the heroin of princesses. Ask me how well that’s working.

    • My kids, too, thought the bathroom was a language free-for-all. It’s not a potty mouth embassy! So glad it’s not just my kids.

      I hate Diego worse than Dora. I can’t explain why because I thought nothing could surpass Dora in annoying-ness. Maybe it’s because Diego goes through all these complicated maneuvers to get to the animal, then when he finally gets there his sister shows up in her Jeep at the same time. Why not just ride with her and save himself the hassle?! Clearly I’ve thought about this waaaayy too much.

  8. So many comments, so little time and space:

    $: Leave your checkbook open and keep writing (my oldest is in 7th grade – I see no end in sight until he graduates from college – he’s on his own for grad school and he will NOT live in my basement).
    Guns: I have a brother who is a card carrying member of the NRA (I’m a card carrying member of NOW – ask us how Christmas is). Guns are everywhere here in Michigan (where we just moved this summer). When the boys were little, I threw away the teeny tiny sub machine guns that came in their LEGO sets (note the proper capitalization there – bravo, me!). It didn’t matter. Pretzel sticks and fingers make great guns, too (although, to be honest, I used pretzel sticks for cigarettes and my finger for a gun when I was a kid playing cops & robbers and cowboys & Indians (sorry to be politically incorrect, but that’s what it was when we were kids) with all my boy cousins (I was the only girl for the longest time) and I have turned out just fine, aside from this twitch I seem to have developed).
    Gender Issues; Yes. Just yes. My boys always had female doctors and dentists because I didn’t want them thinking that boys were doctors, girls were nurses. They now have a male doctor because puberty is awkward enough. They do have a completely cool, super nice male nurse at the doctor’s office (with a real tattoo that doesn’t wash off). Thank God I have boys so I can avoid all the princess crap (although I do love me some glitter).

    If nothing else happens to me today, I win for most () used in a blog comment. Happy Day!

    PS Get used to the no nap thing. It’s a killer.

  9. Oh, honey. It just gets bigger and more expensive the older the kids get. Wait ’til Catholic school tuition, fundraisers, Christmas Stocking, spirit wear, cotillion, volley/basket/softball fees, boy band posters, designer footwear, braces. I need to go cry now. OH! And I almost forgot about the crap my girls have learned from their classmates. From my younger one when she was in FIRST FREAKING GRADE: “Mommy, did you know Ellen on American Idol is married to a girl? Is that allowed?” And “Mommy, is Santa dead? Because Santa is also St. Nicholas and to be a saint you have to be dead. SO what gives?” I really need to go cry now over a few glasses of wine.

  10. Yes, yes, and yes. I loved our preschool because they discouraged a lot of that, but the other kids’ families are raging assholes. Because someone at home must have taught Timmy about gendered activities. And someone at home must have taught Sally the word “fuck”s. Those rotten little poorly parented kids both taught my kid, My sheltered and impressionable kid hung his head and told me he wouldn’t be wearing red any more because Kim had told him that only girls can wear red. (Clearly she’s a moron, and we discussed that.) Alexander taught my innocent child about shooting, which he then did for three years straight.

    And now he has taught his brother. My toddler tells people to shut up, he sings “nanny nanny poopoo”, he shoots at things with his finger.

    And that’s why he’s going to preschool earlier than his brother. So he can share that with all the families who are trying to keep their children from the pain we’ve both now endured. Cuz turnabout’s fair play, yo.

  11. The combination of groaning and laughter this post elicited probably made the neighbors or anyone walking by thinking I was having an awkward sexual encounter with The Tickle Monster. Reading about this? Hilarious. Going through it? Not so much. I don’t envy you, but I do hope it gets better. Also, I’m available on weekends and I have a lot of dark clothing if you ever need help stabbing preschool in any of its arteries and then running away.

  12. haha – love preschool, you asshole. love the rant! although, i’m sad to say, it’s not all the fault of the preschool. it’s just growing up.. wait till elementary, i can assure you it’s not the teachers who are schooling them on the naughty words or the nasty talk, it’s the kids!! those rotten kids! 😉 the schools like to concentrate on the important stuff, like asking for money. 😉

  13. The constant requests for money *kill* me. Ugh.

    I’m in a similarly ranty mood right now. As she is getting socialized my kid is inevitably exposed to all the things we try to shelter her from. Princess culture. Guns. High fructose corn syrup in EVERYTHING. Toilet humor. It doesn’t matter if it’s preschool or dance class or karate. So I guess it’s not so much “Fuck you, preschool” as it is “Fuck you, other people’s children.” Probably that’s not a terribly sympathetic idea for a blog post…

  14. It’s been so many years, but I still remember trying to avoid those “car naps” and it brought a smile to my face.
    I took issue with the things the kids learned in school, but it sure beat homeschooling them.

  15. Oh dear. Sass moves from the toddler room at daycare to the preschool room at the end of the month. I enjoyed how they casually slipped in the words. “they don’t nap in preschool” in amongst less controversial comments. Then again, she doesn’t really nap anymore. But I still pretend (ie put her in her room for an hour or so for the nap she doesn’t take), and I wish they would too.

  16. As an outsider/reader, I’m laughing about going the john to sing her poopy songs but it’s not really funny. School, any school, sucks re: all of this/what they learn from the other kids. I just commented on DunceAcademy.com about school kids blowing Santa for mine. I’m the one that gets to tell them or teach them about poopy or swears or girls DO play with footballs. Irks me to no end. I had a tomboy daughter (now 22) and she was athletic, excelled in Math/Science and taught from us that there was nothing that was gender specific except “winkies”. And the money. As you can tell, I could go on and on. It’s an uphill battle sometimes with the outside world. Keep doing what you’re doing. Ask about the gender thing at parent/teacher conference (bugs the crap out of me). Rant over…

  17. I hate what they learn from other kids. My 3 year old has started saying “get out of my way.” which doesn’t sound that bad when I write it out, but yea, it is bad. I’ve been redirecting for him to say excuse me, and it has been effective, but still. I’m sure the next thing he picks up will be even worse. I generally blame that on kids with older siblings… I mean my daughter is going to get exposed to that sort of language well before Graham was.

    Graham’s school is really great about not trying to do gender stereotypes. They have princess dresses, and more days than not there are princess boys when I get there for pickup. However, for reasons that I do not understand at all, Graham has totally embraced gender stereotypes. I have no idea where it came from.

    I would be appalled if Graham came home talking about guns. Appalled.

    • I am so sad about the gun thing. Really sad. Today after school we were decorating cupcakes with some kids from school (BTW, Sadie’s class is 10 boys and 5 girls), and the boys were having a “sword fight” while we waited for the cupcakes. WTF. Where are they learning this? NO, I can’t raise her in a bubble, but effing sword fights? Come on.

  18. Mara came home from preschool and said “When boys go potty, they point their testicles at the urinal like this” – demonstration ensued.

  19. Do you think it’s weird that they take them all the bathroom at the same time? Part of me says that they’re only 3 and I’m glad they aren’t genderizing them so much, but I thought that this insight was a little strange. Although to be fair, I taught her the word testicles. They taught her urinal though.

    • I did think it was weird at first blush, but I went through the same analysis you did. I hate how confusing/enraging/scary this all is.

      On Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 10:14 PM, Outlaw Mama

  20. You’re scaring me! I agree with everything except ‘chicken butt’–that’s hilarious.

    I am passionate against the ‘pinking’ of everything recently. Rock a stack, sorting blocks, lego, mega blocs, etc…all in pink! Since when did primary coloured toys become boy toys? What the heck is a girl going to learn from all pink blocks–that girls are airheads? It’ all about marketing and many parents are eating it up.

    Princess crap is also banned from my house. Cinderella I’m ok with actually. It’s all the modern over the top silliness that drives me crazy–calling girls ‘princess’, bedrooms as palaces, princess dress up clothes, princess toys, everything pink….taken together it is just too much.

    If my girl is ‘girly that’s fine but I’d like to think there’s a difference between being feminine and being a spoiled little moron. Too strong? Lol

    I feel better now. Sigh….

    • I am with you and yes, chicken butt is pretty funny. And I keep buying Sadie things that are orange and deep blue and purple, because too much pink is making my eyes bleed. I just found a onsie that says, “You can be the princess, I look better in scrubs.” And it’s a picture of a little girl dressed up as a doctor. SWOON. But get this– the t-shirt only comes in pink. Um, no.

      On Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 11:26 PM, Outlaw Mama

  21. I’m afraid you can’t close the floodgates on all of this 😦 But it makes for a hilarious post! The shooter thing is really disturbing. When the Portland Mall thing came on last night, I was all about distracting my 8yo. I don’t want him getting scared! But Sadie is just a baby, I mean geez. And the gender thing – so many atrocities!

  22. Okay, I know I’m late to the party and wasting my naptime, but I have to add at least you don’t have your HUSBAND teaching her to make guns with her fingers. He did that to the almost two year old the other day and I had to restrain myself from saying something to avoid being called a ridiculous hippie. It’s not worth the fight because clearly she’ll learn it anyway.

    I am still considering keeping her with me at home forever to avoid the “girl things” and “boy things” divide. I almost regretted having a baby shower because we were given SO MUCH PINK. I try not to be prejudiced against it – I think it’s acceptable in the rotation – but sheesh.

  23. Seriously , you pay tuition for preschool and the hand is forever out for more. I don’t miss that at all.

    And I love that she can totally hate football, as long as it’s for the right reasons!!

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