Spirit week at school might sound like fun and games for kids, but it can prove to be a nightmare for their parents.
Spirit weeks are considered fun events that are typically hosted in most western schools, where students and even teachers dress up according to daily themes for class. Although kids don't have to worry much about their themed outfits, their parents sort of dread this time of the year. Mariah (@riahthelee on X), a mom of two, shared her issues with 'spirit week' at her kids' school in a viral thread shared on X (formerly Twitter) and needless to say, she nailed the issues on point.
I have 2 kids and 9 different dress up days next week.— Mariah 🌅 (@riahthelee) December 12, 2023
This is ridiculous.
1. It expects families to be able to go out at the drop of a hat and get multiple Christmas character shirts and ugly sweaters at the most expensive time of year… 1/3
"I have two kids and nine different dress-up days next week. This is ridiculous," Mariah writes in her post, "It expects families to be able to go out at the drop of a hat and get multiple Christmas character shirts and ugly sweaters at the most expensive time of year. It’s just another way to alienate kids whose families can’t afford a bunch of extra stuff or the mental load of the extra work."
"It also assumes everyone in the school celebrates Christmas and creates a whole week out of dressing up for it. Most people do celebrate Christmas where I live, but then it’s even more alienating for people that don’t. Have a PJ Day on the last day before break and call it good, please," the mom continued, "'Just don’t do it' is a silly response to a kid excited to dress up. I have one kid who doesn’t much care and one who cares a lot and would feel very left out if I said to suck it up. Obviously, it’s optional and you can do whatever works for your family."
Mariah points out that it kind of forces parents to spill extra money to let their kids participate in dress-up events when they might be incapable of affording it. Events like these during the holiday season not only alienate certain kids and their families but also highlight the financial differences between classmates. "My biggest issue is having one at Christmas time and having days that require so much effort or money to participate. We have three full-spirit weeks a year and my kids are at two different schools with completely different schedules," Mariah adds further.
We taught our kids early on that if they have clothes that fit the theme they are welcome to participate. If not, they can participate on a day we have the stuff for. We don’t make a big deal about it. They learn pretty quickly that they aren’t the only ones.— Jake (@jakepresley7) December 12, 2023
Fellow parents on X shared their own stories about having to get their kids ready for spirit week and how it was extremely stressful. @Sayre1971 wrote: "Spirit week is always a ton of extra work for families and now that our schools have added a holiday spirit week! It's a lot! I just can't deal with it. I do a lot of thrifting and can technically afford to get the items, but if I added up how much I've spent over the years, it would probably shock me."
Yeah I used to have fun with these days. Not anymore. It gives me anxiety, depression, costs too much money— KB (@kmbtexas512) December 12, 2023
@Ishkariot joked: "As a non-American, the term spirit week conjures up a lot of mental images regarding crystal balls, ouija boards and heavy use of incense and sage." @mcgottman99 questioned back: "Would you not want schools to have dress-up weeks? What solution would you want to see? The school I work at has a community closet and it’s not perfect but teachers really stock that thing up especially the weeks before our dress-up weeks." @Konola4Colorado added: "You know what is ridiculous? Thinking that each event needs different clothes. I'm thinking a bunch of red and green T-shirts would mark the occasion just fine and be useful other times of the year."