Teen Listing Tot on eBay Just Doing What Every Mom Dreams

Jeanne Sager

ebayA teenage girl named Autumn Braden is facing possible criminal charges for putting her 2-year-old cousin up on eBay. The listing "kid for sale" was a joke that she thought would be cute. She had no intention of following through and sending the 2-year-old off to another home, but it was reported to the cops anyway.

That righteous indignation that just welled up in you? Time to push it back down. Autumn Braden didn't do anything worse than anything we think of at least a few times a week.

Yeah, that's right. I've joked that I am going to sell my kid -- although unlike Autumn, I say I'm willing to let her go to the lowest bidder ... maybe even for free (and I'll send the stuffed animals with her!!). Yeah, I've JOKED about it. Because parenting is tough, and sometimes I have to laugh or I'll cry.

Which is what gets me about this whole situation. Autumn Braden was home, babysitting her toddler cousin. She was getting restless. The kid was driving her a bit batty. We've all been there, haven't we? The kid won't stop whining/littering the floor with LEGOs/throwing Cheerios/talking back, and you're at your wits' end. You call a time-out. FOR YOU. And they come back out after the timer goes off, and start it all over again!

See? Wits' end. And for teenagers, it can go one of two ways. Either they're better adept at handling it than a parent because this is just one night of babysitting, not every day of their life. Or they're just fried. Fried. Fried!! Because they DON'T do this every day. This isn't their kid, and they're not sure what the heck to do. Even the best sitter gets there. I've deduced babysitting makes for good birth control for teenagers for precisely this reason.

Braden says she figured that eBay would just delete the entry, no harm done. Instead a bidder alerted the cops, who showed up on her doorstep to check on the kid. That makes sense. Glad to hear someone cares about kids. But now they're saying she may face criminal charges. So let's take a look at what she put up, shall we? The listing read:

An adorable child for sale, can clean and hold a decent conversation. Very lovable but I just outgrew her \<3.

Reads like something I've read on a mom's Facebook hundreds of times. How about you? Do you think this was harmless or a criminal offense?

Image via brianc/Flickr

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