Dear Kids, Stop Breaking My Sh*t

by Brianna Hill Kastner
Elva Etienne / Getty

I have always been, shall we say, weird about my stuff.

Early in my husband and my relationship, we were going through a drive-thru one evening. The jeep was in complete disarray because I had been couch-surfing for a couple of weeks for a friend’s wedding. When the clerk handed my husband his handful of change, he tossed it in no particular place onto the console. It was not unlike rolling a handful of dice onto a flat table, but in the dark car, it instantly was swallowed by the abyss. I was appalled and





Matt was instantly defensive, “Your Jeep is a complete wreck, why do you care where I put the change?”

My memory fails me on what I said back, but I’m sure I responded in my most rational voice, making sure to validate his’s feelings. What came not so gracefully out of this argument was, when he does not treat my stuff nicely, in whatever condition it is in, I feel disrespected.

As I entered my thirties, I was feeling pretty good about my maturity in this particular area of life. I was no longer micromanaging my friend’s hair technique when borrowing my flat iron. “Don’t close it too hard; the ceramic will break!” was my constant “advice” in college. Actually, it is a bit miraculous that I left college with any friends at all. Perhaps what I thought of as maturity is actually just a change in environment. In my adult life, I am not required to share my things nearly as often as I was in my early twenties… well, that until I had children that is.

Which brings me to my current struggle.

My kids are constantly in my stuff and I can’t take it anymore.

Just today:

I was upstairs folding laundry for about 6 minutes, and during that time one of my angelic children decided that my Tom Ford sunglasses really only needed one arm.

Briana Hill

Seriously, WTF!?

When I question them, they lean to watch Cat in the Hat on the TV behind me. I go on to tell them how these are my favorite pair, how expensive, blah blah blah, but they don’t give a single shit.

My mom is quick to give quality advice: “Put your valuable things up high where they can’t reach them.”

Fine, I’ll try and do better at anticipating the things that can and will be destroyed so I can hide those things. This is a fine theory, but tell me, dear friend…

Briana Hill

How the hell do I anticipate them hiding the handles from the buffet in my dining room? Why, for the love of all things, would they take the knob off of furniture then promptly forget that this has ever happened. Where could it possibly be?

Every time I look at it, I get sad.

I swear I have child locks on things and other things put away but it does not deter. Here is the list of things they have ruined in the past month:

My bronzer

A whole bag of Neutrogena make-up remover wipes

Another whole bag of Neutrogena make-up remover wipes

Three packs of gum

Every bottle of water I was drinking when they took a drink with a mouthful of anything

My nose spray

My hairspray

One slipper

A monogrammed wine glass

A necklace I was currently wearing

Two book covers

I have a difficult time accepting that the future of everything I own is constantly in jeopardy. I need a toddler insurance policy. Is it too much to ask a 2 and 4-year-old to just stop messing with my things?