Toddlers Don't Need Their Own Proms

Jeanne Sager

kid in tuxOh prom. Such a big night. Such a fun milestone. And the one night when a toddler smears snot down her ballgown.

Wait, what? Oh yeah, I'm not talking about THE prom. I'm talking about the Precious Prom. The WHAAAAA? Yeah, I had no clue either, so don't feel bad. Out here in the sticks where we take our tots on playdates at the park, there's no such thing as a prom for toddlers. Which doesn't mean they don't exist.

According to a little Googling, precious proms are just like the real thing, only for the pint-size set. So you have fancy dresses, mini tuxes, corsages, the whole nine. Only they're being worn by the kind of people who pluck the petals out of the corsage to eat them and dip the tie in their soup ... on PURPOSE.

I'll admit there is this teeny weeny part of me that's all gushy, thinking about my daughter in a pretty dress with her hair just so. Yes, she'd be GORGEOUS. But then there's the realistic mom, the one who knows that dressing her like that for Christmas card photos is a chore and a half to begin with, that I spend the entire photo shoot chewing my fingernails, worrying that the gorgeous little outfit will fall victim to a stain the mysterious way that kids' clothes suddenly sport stains (laugh, go ahead, laugh -- have you ever pulled a brand new white shirt for your tot out of the laundry only to find two orange spots on it? I have).

The concept of toddler proms is getting to me because THEY don't get it. They hate being dressed up because the collars are too tight and the fabrics are itchy. They don't have any "loves" at this point, and if they do, they're generally forced on them by parents who just can't wait to pair up their progeny.

But perhaps most importantly -- or should I say most glaringly -- they're not about the kids at all. No, really. Teen girls can't wait to pick out their dresses, their shoes, their accessories. Toddler girls are content playing blocks with their buddies. Teen boys are debating who to ask, who to dance with, how not to look like a dork. Toddler boys are debating whether peeing in the potty makes them a big boy or not.

But if parents have to plan the prom, I've got to say it: this prom is for the parents.

What do you think? Are you jumping on this new trend?

Image via chefranden/Flickr

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