8 Things I Hate About Back To School

It’s that time again! Back to school, the time of the year that makes most parents jump for joy. Most parents, but not so much this parent. Oh, not because I’m not looking forward to more free time during the day (though I will still have a 3-year-old in tow). That part will be awesome. No, I dread back to school because it means dealing with new people, which is something I am terrible at.

I’ve mentioned before that I am somewhat of an introvert, and sometimes I can be socially awkward as hell. Which means back to school time brings a ton of new obstacles to get through before I can settle into mid-year social hibernation (until summer brings its own fresh hell of social interaction shenanigans). Of course, there are worse things in the world, but the following things still drive me nuts.

1. Meeting the new teacher


For the most part, my oldest daughter’s teachers have been wonderful. My problem isn’t with the teachers whatsoever, it’s all me (I know, I know, “It’s not you, it’s me sounds so LAME, but it’s true). I’m terrible at face to face interaction and I know I come off like a total weirdo at first. E-mail was made for people like me.

(Photo: Memebase.com)

2. Getting up at the ass-crack of dawn

I hate mornings

When my oldest daughter was in kindergarten we lived in Ohio, where the schools have all come together in an unholy alliance bent on driving all nocturnal-type parents mad. We had to get up at  six a.m. SIX in the morning. Now that we’re back in NYC it’s slightly better at seven a.m, but I will still need to shower in coffee to even be halfway coherent.

(Photo:  piesoup)

3. No DAMN busing in my neighborhood

walking to school

I am LAZY. Not in the “refuses to get a job or clean my house” sort of way. No, I’m lazy in that I hate getting three kids up, dressed, fed, shoe-ed and out the door, only to have to walk 10 NYC blocks to drop them off. I legit live one block outside of the busing zone. So yeah, FML.

(Photo: ljworld.com)

4. Making lunches

gross school lunch

It’s not that I hate making the lunches, per se, it’s that my lunches always suck. I don’t have the time or ambition to make a work of art lunch. Nor do I have the distinction of being the “cool mom” who puts soda and candy bars in my kid’s lunch every day (because diabetes). So I send my kids off with their boring, healthy lunches and they will be less than enthused. No one is satisfied.The alternative would be school lunches, but they resemble jail food and smell like cat farts. So that’s out.

(Photo:  john.murden)

5. Shopping for crap

back to school shopping

I did NOT get the shopping gene, though thankfully my husband totally did, so we usually even out. But back to school time unfortunately coincides with the busiest time of the year for his business, which means I’m stuck with the bulk of the shopping.  And I hate it. I hate malls, department stores, Target, etc. I even hate online shopping. Something about being a spendthrift plus being raised in part by my Great Depression era grandparents makes me hate parting with money. Staples is the one and only exception, because ONE CENT CRAYONS. And they’re Crayola, not that “Fakeola” bullshit.

(Photo:  Bloomington Salvation Army)

6. Making my kids wear shoes

flip flip love

We live by the beach and pretty much wear flip flops from late March until Late November. Unfortunately that doesn’t fly in school, which means SHOES. Not to make our family sound like the Beverly Hillbillies, but my kids HATE shoes. Even cute sparkly light up shoes barely get a smile.

(Photo: chris runoff)

7. Homework

hates homework

I hated homework when I was in school and I hate it with the fury of 10,000 Nickelback songs sung by Nicholas Cage now. And with my middle child going into kindergarten this year, I will have twice the homework and twice the headaches. It’s not the work that’s the issue, but the whining that goes along with it.

(Photo: woodleywonderworks)


baby with snot bubble

Gird your loins (and immune systems). Within a week of school starting our home turns into a reenactment of plague-ridden Medieval Europe. Snot and boogers are everywhere, and everyone is hacking up pieces of lung. FUN! There isn’t enough Lysol and hand sanitizer in the world to combat the germ-factory that is elementary school.

(Photo: riasmithdesigns / MyFirstFail.com)

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  • Paul White

    That last picture?
    Yeah I threw up in my mouth a little. Oh god. Snot bubbles are so gross.

    • Rachel Sea

      I’ll take snot bubbles over green slime trails every day of the week.

    • DMH

      I’m eating–well, WAS eating– lunch as I type this. So yeah. Bye, appetite.

    • http://fairlyoddmedia.com/ Frances Locke

      BWAHAHAHHA my evil plan worked!

    • Emil

      I was told these things wouldn’t gross me out once I became a parent- wrong!

  • Tara

    Did that school lunch look delicious to anyone else? Just me? I’ll blame it on pregnancy, then.

    • Rachel Sea

      I’m a pickle snob, but I’d totally eat the rest of it.

    • http://fairlyoddmedia.com/ Frances Locke

      See, now I would eat the pickles and nothing else there! We could be lunch buddies!

    • Blahblah

      I would eat the hell out of that hot dog if I wasn’t having some hyperemesis problems today!

  • keelhaulrose

    When I was in high school the kids across the street got to ride the bus. Not us. One mile my butt, that was as the crow flies. Actual walking distance was more like a mile and a quarter, and that was if I cut through the cemetery. Not fun on those dark, spooky fall mornings (school started at 7:25, I’d be at the cemetery at 6:45). Best day of my high school career was when we moved into a bussing zone, until I learned it came at 6:05.

  • Blahblah

    You’re not allowed to wear flipflops to school anymore?

    • Emmali Lucia

      I never was, it was against dress code because in case of emergency blah blah bull shit bull shit

    • Blahblah

      We only weren’t allowed to wear them in the chemistry lab because of chemicals (which, yeah, okay, we DID spill weird stuff in there). But none at all? This is really a problem? Um… Okay, I guess.

      There was a big fuss at my high school the year after I graduated. No more pajamas! I didn’t understand. Does it really matter if I’m wearing fuzzy bottoms?

    • Momma425

      Nope, no flip flops. Not even at Kindercare.
      Apparantly they are dangerous. The kid could trip. Also, they are flimsy. I’m not sure what that has to do with anything…but yeah.

  • Aniangel

    I think you may have crawled into my brain to write this article. So so so much like our house.

  • Allyson_et_al

    Our town has no busing at all, so I feel your pain. I usually drive the kids to school (because we’re running too late for them to walk), but, barring truly wretched weather, they walk home on their own. They complain, but it’s actually a win for them, because they get to hang out with their friends and blow off a little steam outside before settling in for homework/whining.
    As for the mornings, last year the entire house simultaneously overslept, and my kids were about 30 minutes late. On the first day of school. Yeah, that went over well.