The lights are twinkling on my Christmas tree and I'm in a bloody good mood, despite the fact that I fucked up this morning and found out I was supposed to have handed in a nativity costume for my four year old at school yesterday, and had failed to do so!
With the costume ordered and a good episode of Dexter on TV I'm soaking up the peace and tranquility. I pick up my phone to peruse through my Facebook news feed and BAM!
Good mood disintegrated within seconds.
Like many mums I follow a few 'mum groups' on Facebook within my area. Mainly for information on local activities and sometimes to ask about school related stuff.
On one particular mum group I saw a post about kids names. It was referred to by the original poster and other commenters on the thread as 'lighthearted banter' but honestly, it wasn't.
The thread was discussing ridiculous names that they had heard fellow parents had called their children and how awful they were. Clearly without a thought that there may actually be parents in the group who had named their child one of the names that they were vomiting out all over the thread, they continued to mock and parent bash with each comment.
One member of the group who actually had a pair of testicles (although not in the literal sense) actually asked why they cared what other parents named their kids? And in short told them they were being mean.
At this point the original poster told this lady (my hero) to get a grip.
Now I could have posted myself and say what I needed to say, but what is the point speaking to 10-15 individuals and getting in to an argument when I had a hot chocolate and baileys calling my name.
No. Instead I decided to blog my thoughts in an attempt to reach not only them select few women, but a number of other women who think that this behaviour is acceptable.
I would like to say to you women that YOU need to get a grip. Go out and live your life. Why concern yourselves with the lives of others. Now unless a parent who has happened to call her kid "table and chair" or whatever else, has come and tattooed that name on your forehead, or written it on your front door in blood then I don't see the problem. How are they affecting your life in any way?
You can call me the 'fun police' or whatever other ridiculous term you deem necessary but the idea of this being light hearted banter is ludicrous.
Banter usually involves the person you're taking the piss out off and in return they respond with a derogatory comment about you, in a jovial none insulting manner. This is not banter. It's bullying. It's a group of women with some spare time on their hands who think "oooh! I'll post on a mum page for all the world to see how repulsive I think this name is, and how stupid the parents were to use it! Because I'm a douchebag"
I'm no saint. There have been a few names I've heard where I've thought "hmmm, bit ropey" but there's a vast difference between a quick spur of the moment thought and verbalising it for the world and his wife to see with the possibility of hurting someone's feelings.
Now some of you reading this will disagree with me. Well it would make a very boring world if we all had the same point of view. Of course there's the old retaliation of "well it's irresponsible of the parents to name them so ridiculously."
What you actually mean is, it's irresponsible of the parents to name their children something different to the norm because there are horrible people in the world who will judge them and ridicule them. Like you.
Isn't it more irresponsible to openly mock people on social media and defend your right to do this by placing the blame on the people you are mocking?
Oh! She named her kid 'tripod' so she had it coming!
They called their kid something unusual so what do they expect!
What they probably expect is that grown adults will be mature and kind enough to perhaps think "wouldn't call my own kid that but they're not my kid, so I'm just going to carry on with my life now."
They probably expect you to teach your children NOT to pick on kids who are different, whether that's through their name, ethnicity, religion or disability.
To all the parents out there who have called their kids weird and wonderful names. You are marvellous. You have chosen a name that YOU like. You have expected goodness from the world. It is not your responsibility to ensure your child doesn't get bullied because of their name. It is everyone's responsibility to ensure they don't raise a child who will bully. High five to you for saying "fuck you!" to society and doing whatever the hell you please.
Now, I'm off to light a Yankee candle and drink my hot chocolate in peace before the madness of the school run begins. Because seriously, I have more shit to deal with and think about then what someone has named their kid. Like tea for example. We're having stir fry.