Don’t Take This Personal, Elmo, but Would You Kindly Die?

Remember awhile back when I tried to speak with sagacity about Wee Cee’s lack of interest in Elmo? And remember how you seasoned parents kindly held your tongue in the comments and refrained from telling me, “Oh, you just wait, girly. Elmo fixation is a thing and it’s going to ruin your life just like it ruined ours”?

I remember too. Those were simpler, less-stabby days indeed. Days when I could live in peace without the constant idiocies of Mr. Noodle and his bevy of fellow imbeciles serving as white noise to my life.

I feel so horrible for hating you both so much. Source

I feel horrible for hating you both so much. Source

All traces of Cee’s former indifference towards that little red monster have been obliterated. It’s like she knew I wrote that post boasting of her preference for Mr. Rogers over Elmo and is now holding it over me by chanting her word for Elmo – “La La” – 674,367,843,658,347,289 times a day in an effort to get me to just chain the TV to her head and let her watch him all day long. My brains are literally oozing out of my ears because she is so fixated on that God-forsaken Muppet.

It makes me feel like such a wretched jerk for hating Elmo as much as I do. He is just a little red guy who has an eensy-weensie voice, and he’s just so nice to those little babies who come on Elmo’s World. And my kid loves him! Shouldn’t I take solace in seeing my kid happy, no matter the cost?

Well, let’s talk a second about that kid.

While I wanted to devote a whole post to discussing Cee’s expanding vocabulary, now is as good a time as any to mention that she has gotten really verbose. I think I’m supposed to know exactly how many words she has acquired at this point; everyone seems to calculate their kids’ words into an algorithm that then tells them with accuracy which college they will be attending and the latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates of their retirement community, but I really have no clue. Maybe twenty? Or maybe ten? I fail. The point is that when she wants something, now she tells us rather than just waiting around until it happens. And since she’s also in the delightful I WANT IT NOW NO I MEAN NOW, SLAVE WOMAN phase of her life, she whines LALALALALALALALALALALALALALALA (stay with me here) LALALALALALALALALALALALALA eleventy billion times until she wears me down and I show her the Elmo video.

And I am losing my mind. Losingmymindlosingmymindlosingmymind.

I effing hate that I am writing an “Elmo is the spawn of Satan” post because wow, I mean, no parent in the history of parenthood has ever disliked Elmo. How freaking novel of me. So goodbye, I’m off to hate on Caillou and Chuck E. Cheese in Parenting Cliché Land.

***POSTSCRIPT: While writing this post, Cee figured out how to say no. This post is therefore dedicated to my sanity. I’ve loved you, San, but it’s time we parted ways.

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  1. I think my son has finally moved beyond Elmo (now I just cursed myself). But while in that Elmo stage, he destroyed four window shades. I fucking hate Elmo.

    1. The only person around here destroying things is me, and it’s my brain cells. (Although there are a few sets of mini blinds that C is well on her way to demolishing.)

  2. I feel stressed out about your sanity after reading, which must mean you did an excellent job of getting your point across, haha. I wish you the best of luck…especially with this “no” discovery.

    1. This post was written when I was at a very low point. I mean, I guess that’s kind of obvious because I devoted 600 words to Elmo, but I feel like he kind of had it coming.

  3. Turn her on to Arthur! She HAS to love that Aardvark. Or what about Wishbone? Those HAVE to be on DVD somewhere.

    If that doesn’t work, I know the number to a good orphanage (none of that Annie stuff).

    1. I LOVE Arthur. LOVE. And she likes the theme song to the show, but the rest of it is kind of hard for her to follow so she loses interest pretty quickly. I guess she likes Elmo because he’s mind-numbingly basic. She basically lost her sh*t today when he was talking about balls (heh), which are her favorite things on the planet. Next to Elmo, of course.

      1. Yeah, I guess she may be too young for Arthur yet. I’m sure she’ll come around. I was never really into Elmo… It was Barney for me. I loved that dinosaur.

    2. Arthur is the bomb-diggity. In fact, i am president of his fan club. And D.W. is possibly the coolest kid to ever walk the face of cartoon earth.

      1. Are you really????

        1. Well, the fan club that exists in my house.

      2. YES. EXACTLY. And baby Kate? She turned out to be pretty awesome, too. Don’t even get me started on Pal.

  4. When my kiddo was a wee one she became fixated on Calliou and Dora. And honestly, I can’t explain it, but Dora (and all her cousins) make me want to stab things, kick kittens, and burst cutesy animal shaped balloons. Something about Dora’s threatening way of making us all play her games and sing her songs and do all her damn work for her. GAH DORA, IF YOU CAN’T HANDLE YOUR SHIT THEN WHY ARE WE EVEN HERE, ya know? I switched Dora out with Handy Manny whenever I could (because I dug the whole Spanish stuff a lot) and it worked…for the most part. I’m sad to say I’ve still seen an ungodly amount of Dora and as I’m writing this one of her songs is bouncing around in my head (KILL ME, I said KILL ME, KILL ME, SAY IT LOUDER!), but I survived it, and yes, you will too. Welcome to Parenting Cliche Land. There’s wine in the cooler. But somebody made off with all the vodka. Bastards.

    1. “Welcome to Parenting Cliche Land. There’s wine in the cooler. But somebody made off with all the vodka. Bastards.”


      Yeah, we have not wandered into the Dora territory. Her haircut makes me want to stab myself, so I am going to stave her off for as long as I can.

      1. I’ll be here for you in another year or so when she’s moved onto Dora. And I’ll have alcohol. Because we’re cool like that.

  5. ardenrr · · Reply

    My nieces also adore Elmo. I don’t see them often as they live across the country. They visited a few months ago. While it was a blast hanging with them, if I ever have to watch Iron Monster w/ Elmo ever again, I’ll claw my eyes out with a rusty spoon….

    1. That’s the thing! Cee is so much fun to be around, but then when she remembers that Elmo exists and that her dad will pull him up on the iPad the instant she demands it, she turns into a tiny possessed cupcake. Elmo makes good kids go bad.

  6. At least it’s not Barney ~~~~~

  7. None of my three have ever given two shits about Elmo or Barney or the Teletubbies. My 10 year old would have that NickJr program on all day with Moose A Moose and Zee the owl, but that was semi tolerable programming. My 4 year old is too busy playing with my phone and iPad to notice the tv is on and 2 is preoccupied with finding people to stab or push or hit. He’s not right in the head.

    1. Your kids are obviously of good stock for having noticed the bullshit of Elmo and Barney and the Teletubbies. One of the few words my daughter can say is “iPad”, so we really have a problem over here. She equates the iPad with Elmo on Demand. FML.

  8. Haha that title is too funny

    1. LOL I’m glad you liked it! For a second, I thought it was a little too strong. But then I was like, NOPE. LEAVIN’ IT IN.

      1. Haha I’m glad you did. Go big or go home right?

  9. My niece, who is about to turn 19, was fixated on Barney. If she wasn’t such a cute kid otherwise, I would have disinherited her.

    1. As much as I hate Elmo, Barney is about a bajillion times worse. We were watching him the other day and I almost vomited multiple times. The people who make that show all must have cranial injuries.

  10. CombatBabe · · Reply

    Bright side? Least it’s not Barney… Well, that would be a bright side for me.

    1. YES. Barney is 100,000 times worse. Elmo actually doesn’t bother me except for the fact that my daughter is obsessed with him and nags me to show him to her. By contrast, Barney is inherently evil.

  11. OMG! I am now scared. Z has not yet shown any overt interest towards Elmo, yet. However I am ready to murder Mother Goose and Barney. One more peep out of Mother Goose and it might just be her last words. Also I would willingly pull the trigger on the narrator of TeleTubbies. I tell you, these shows are bringing the murderous side of me out..GRRRRR!

    1. I totally feel you. I was not a violent person until I heard the whine of Elmo for the billionth time in one day. It can drive a person to drink.

  12. LA LA would get annoying after a while. It’s probably good to distract her by leaving the house–going to the park, going on walks, etc. Then maybe she would forget about it? Not that I know anything about anything. I’m pretty sure my parents told me that I would watch videos on repeat for hours. I turned out fine. So worse comes to worse, she watches Elmo and she turns out like me? Okay never mind. Bad advice.

    1. Oh, Lils. Lils, Lils, Lils. I wish it were that easy. This child is too far gone to be distracted. The toddler mind is a infuriating thing ;)

      1. Yeah I think I’ll go crazy when I’m a mom.

  13. Pray for Elmo and not Barney. I hated Barney and luckily my kid had very little interest in him – it was all about Thomas ..I’m also opposed to Calliou (and I don’t even care if his name is mis-spelled). Sometimes my kid tells me I look like the Mom – and I want to vomit … Mom is a fump.

    1. Barney is the devil. He truly makes me want to gouge my eyes out. Another fun fact: after a neatly five-year-long hiatus, there are new episodes of Caillou. I weep for our future.

      1. I’m glad my kid is 10 now…

  14. Oh my dear. I have no parental wisdom to impart, but I do send all my sympathy. And my hopes that you can retroactively train her back onto Gumby or Reading Rainbow:)

    1. There is actually a very highly-rated RR app that I cannot wait to try once she gets a little bigger! I cannot wait to try it!

  15. All three of my children have loved that insipid muppet. Baby C seems to be past it and is now on to Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Bubble Guppies. I’m not sure it’s an improvement, but at least the squeaky annoying laugh of Elmo is no longer heard in my house.

    1. I have heard about Bubble Guppies. Should I investigate or just not introduce her to them?

      1. It’s better than Elmo, but not by much.

  16. I’m sorry, and I might be twisting a dirty thumb into your wound for this, but Doodle still has never really gotten into Sesame Street. He knows who they are, and he is fond of Cookie Monster to a small extent, but he never really developed Elmo fever – not yet at least. I theoretically *understand* a parent’s hatred for Elmo, but I really don’t *know*. And I’m pretty happy about that.
    But Caillou, oh Caillou… I can hate on some Caillou all day with you.

    1. Caillou is the absolute worst. I am not an advocate of corporal punishment, but Caillou definitely needs a switch to his hide.

  17. OK, don’t hate me, but …. I like Elmo. I think he’s kinda funny. I mean, he’s no Grover. Grover is the coolest. Also, Elmo > Barney, Elmo > Calliou. He’s definitely the lesser of the evils.

    1. The thing is, I actually really liked Elmo before C became fixated on him. He has the cute factor. It’s just when I hear his name repeated over and over a gazillion times, I tend to lose it.

  18. One word for you: headphones. For you or for her. Doesn’t matter.

    I never liked Elmo’s voice, but I’m learning there are worse things. Avoid Chuggington. Avoid. Avoid. And Sid the Science Kid. Warning. Avoid.

    1. I wish someone would slip some battery acid in Sid’s sippy. I deplore him.

  19. When my kids were of the age to watch Elmo, I used to friggin’ LOVE him – because I knew for that five minutes of my live when ‘Elmo’s World’ came on that there would be absolute peace and quiet in the house. Well, peace and quiet from my kids. Not from the horrible screeching red thing on TV.

    1. “Screeching red thing” is an excellent way of describing him.

  20. I’m sorry, Emily. My son loved Elmo, too, and he had the doll that sang! Maybe you can put some earbuds and listen to some music? Good luck.

    1. I may regret saying this, but investing in that doll may actually be a good idea because at least then she could play with it by herself and not need me to hold the iPad, where she usually watched Elmo clips.

  21. It’s okay. There are many parenting cliche landmines that just can’t be avoided. Like princesses. It’s inevitable. When G was little, I tried pretty hard to not “over-girly-fy” the things I exposed her to. If there was a choice between a pink trike and a primary colored one, I went with the primary colored. She had a gender-neutral nursery (mostly because we didn’t find out the sex of the baby when I was pregnant). We read gender-neutral books and watch Baby Einstein. But somewhere around 2 years old, we were walking through a store and there was a display full of Disney princess barbies. She walked right over to it, picked one up, and said, “Princess. pretty. love.” And it was over. Then I found myself buying tiaras and barfing in the process, but then secretly thinking she was the cutest thing in the world when she wore them. Cliche landmine detonated. P.S. I also took her to a Wiggles concert, and it was amazing.

    1. We have largely tried to do the same thing with C, avoiding the overtly girly stuff. (Don’t go thinking I’m all PC or anything, though. I actually just hate the color pink. It is objectively gross to me because it goes with nothing.) But a couple months ago, she started carrying all her stuffed animals around and calling them “baby.” I guess it was bound to happen.

  22. Bahahhahahhahahahhahahahha! I am laughing with you, right? When my oldest was little, it was Little Mermaid, overandoverandoverandoveranover…. I can still hear Ariel singing. Shit! Now I hear it again. When my middle boy was little, Barney came out. It was really cute for 10 minutes, and then I hatedhatedhatedhatedhatedhated that stupid purple dinosaur! Hated! When little man was little, we discovered Teletubbies while on vacation in the UK. They were SOOOO adorable, that we bought plates, a stuffed Teletubby and we all loved them. For 10 minutes. They came to the US just a few months later, and I thought if I heard Tinkywinkytinkywinkytinkywinkytinkywinky one more time, I would explode, after I vomited. Now, all three things are in my head again… after so many years. That’s how long you’ll hear lalalallalallalalallalalalalalala, Emily. That’s why so many of us older moms drink. ;-)

    1. My younger brother was the prime audience of Barney when he came out too, and while I hated that giant purple demon back then, he is a gazillion times worse when you’re an adult parent watching him. Watching him for thirty minutes is equivalent to being exposed to radiation.

      1. High doses. Very high doses.

  23. You know, I was an Elmo fan. So this post upsets me. But I understand how infuriating the LALALALALALA thing is because my friend’s daughter has recently learned my name and when I go there she says LAULAULAULAULAU very loudly a long time til I agree to read books to her all evening.

  24. minifemmenomad · · Reply

    This makes me sooo happy that my Sammy is stuck on Disney Jr… I can handle that a lot better than Elmo. I recall once he saw a dancing Elmo in the store, and he freaked out like the item was possessed. But if he ever does get stuck on Elmo, I can’t promise that I would not be the crazy lady chucking her flatscreen tv out the front door screaming.

Now you can hold the magic talking stick.

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