Dear Family: Don't Touch My Sh*t

by Liz Henry
Liz Henry

Dear Family:

I love you, but what I’m about to get into will make your heads spin. Yeah, I’m looking at you, Man Unit and Teenager. This has gone on too long. This touching of my shit.

I’ve been complacent in the destruction of my own shit because I didn’t set some upfront boundaries.

You know, now that I think about it, I did set some boundaries, but no one cared.

It should go without saying my stuff is just as important as everyone else’s things. I actually don’t have many things. When we moved from Atlanta to Philadelphia, it became crystal clear how little of our shit was actually mine — there were four boxes of books and two seasons of clothes. And don’t anyone dare say the “household items” were mine because I will cut a bitch. Also, that is sexist and I will not put up with anyone being a “tool of the patriarchy” in this house.

Remember years ago when I bought a brand new car only to have the metal handlebars of a bicycle with training wheels scratch both doors all the way to the hood? Or when I handed off the car to be driven, and it came back with a crack in the windshield? Then, later, tiny hands took to the inside like cavemen and drew all over it.

The fact both of you are still breathing is a testament to my love.

I’ve watched good body wash flow down the drain like it’s water, the Talenti gelato disappeared from the freezer because I apparently “took too long,” my iPad commandeered, my headphones stolen, my nail polish destroyed, and the last Diet Coke taken overnight.

My Netflix profile has been overloaded with crap I don’t watch and my name changed to “Betty Big Boobs.”

Liz Henry

As a person who prides herself on her good taste, I just can’t stomach anyone — let alone Netflix — thinking I watch anime by choice. Also, both of you know how much I hate the name Betty as a derivative of my more formal Elizabeth. It is Liz or Mom. Also, I do not have a sense of humor about this because Netflix is always watching and judging, and you guys are ruining my future recommendations.

Liz Henry

I’ve taken all of this one-sided sharing like a champ, but there’s one thing I will not stand for, and it stops now.

The Nutella is mine. All mine.

Get your own, fuckers.

Nutella is my happiness condensed into a jar of hazelnut spread, so come hell or high water, no one is to touch it, eat it, or bask in its glory but me.

There will be no putting it on waffles, there will be no Nutella and toast, there will be no finger dipping — just don’t even look at it — because in your world, Nutella doesn’t even exist.

I will not hide the Nutella, and I most certainly will not eat it in a closet. Everyone else’s shit is out in the open, and I don’t touch it, so both of you must deal.

And if by chance I happen to forget to replace my own Nutella, then certain death will be ravaged on your souls if you dare touch the Tostitos queso. Please note my warning as a reminder of the stakes.

Liz Henry

Thank you both. I love you. (But I don’t “share my Nutella” love you.)

You’ve been warned,

Big Boobs