The Tooth Fairy

by Scary Mommy
Originally Published: 

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve had to rummage through my kids’ rooms to find money to play the tooth fairy because I had no single dollars of my own, I’d be rich. Well, maybe not rich, but I’d actually have enough money to pay for the damn teeth and not be rummaging through their rooms at three o’clock in the morning to begin with. Fuck the tooth fairy.

I know, I know. She’s a rite of passage, you say. A little magic sprinkled in a world where childhood magic is fast and fleeting! A tradition!

I disagree. I think she sucks.

In a day and age where we charge three dollar coffees on debit cards, it’s simply become too much to ask that we always have a spare one dollar bill lying around on the off chance that our child’s tooth will happen to become detached that very day. What are we — banks?

Sadly, it’s not even a buck anymore. Did you know that the average tooth fairy payout is three dollars per tooth? That’s sixty bucks, when all is said and done. For my three kids, that’s 180 one dollar bills I’ll need to shell out for this silly rite of passage. One hundred and eighty dollars! That’s an awful lot of coffee.

Then, there’s the actual remembering to do it. As if we don’t have enough on our evening plates with dinner and baths and assembling lunches for the next day and helping with homework and putting out school clothes and catching up on e-mails and a million other things, we’re expected to stumble into our children’s rooms and discreetly slip money under their pillows without being caught? On behalf of a mythical fairy? My sleep deprived brain simply doesn’t have the stamina to successfully carry through, I’m afraid.

For kids who battle bedtime fears, the whole thing is just a recipe for disaster. Sure, kids, you’re all safe and tucked in, but beware that while you’re sleeping, a winged creature will barge through your window and take an old body part you’re so attached to! Sleep tight!

Who thought it a good idea to get kids into the habit of trading body parts for money, anyway? Isn’t money supposed to be earned? Like, for chores… or at least bribery purposes? I find the exchange to be a rather dangerous gateway habit to introduce. What’s next: A fifty for a detached finger? A nice, crisp hundred for a severed toe? What’s the lesson here?

When my puppy loses her baby teeth, she’ll simply swallow them or they’ll disappear into the abyss of single socks and long lost library books never to be seen again. That seems a more logical way for teeth to go, much like their cousins the fingernail clippings.

Besides, if I’m going to pay for anything, I’d rather it be a toothless grin that I can document for prosperity’s sake. A dollar for a toothless smile is money I’ll happily spend. I’ll have a picture to frame, my kids will have money for their piggy banks and we’ll all be happy.

Best of all, I’ll have two bucks to spare for my coffee and no stupid mythical creature can beat that.

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