Dear YouTubers Who Are Posting the DIY Slime Videos That Are Taking Over the Lives of Tweens Across America:
It’s only a matter of time. On behalf of parents everywhere, I beg of you: Stop.
What you’re doing is harmless. In fact, it’s creative and sensory and – as my daughter’s friend argued on a recent playdate when I gently suggested that perhaps they do something other than make slime this time – it’s scientific. You’re providing a fun learning opportunity and encouraging kids to be crafty and hands-on instead of sedentary and screen-obsessed. I should be thanking you. Pinning your videos or whatever it is that crafty moms do.
I just can’t embrace this whole slime craze. I can’t even tolerate it. I can’t even co-exist with it. Case in point: The other night, my tween was leisurely soaking in a hot bubble bath (complete with mermaid bath bomb because this is who we are now, I guess) when I stumbled upon this oozing, glittery mess all over her desk.
“Hey!” I called from the hallway. “You going to clean up that mess on your desk?”
“I WILLLLL,” she roared at me with such ferocity that I actually walked two steps back from the bathroom door. And then she collapsed into a puddle of sobs. And so, I went downstairs and messaged my mom village (you know, to talk me down from rubbing slime into her scalp and up her nostrils) while my tween wept bitter tears because I cut her Beyonce bath short to clean up the anxiety-inducing diarrhea of slime that she’d abandoned on her desktop. The slime, as much as it fulfills her every creative desire and curiosity, it stresses her the fuck out too.
She can’t stop making it. Leaving ziplock baggies of it around the house. Researching it. Stealing all my tupperware for it. Spending her precious pocket money on glue, Borax, saline solution and tiny funnels like she’s running some sort of Lisa-Frank-inspired meth lab, furtively copying ingredients from videos she finds online and hoarding them from her younger siblings. Every day I find water bottles and sippy cups with murky blue liquid inside and masking tape labels that say “DO NOT DRINK.”
The child who uses the sippy cup, she cannot read the labels. You see what I mean, YouTubers? This is getting out of hand. You and your generous gift of slime, I believe you have the best of intentions, and sure, only a kid or two has actually wound up in the hospital so far due to Borax exposure. But it’s only a matter of time.
And it’s not just one kind of slime. There’s fluffy slime and glitter slime and butter slime and sand slime and floam slime and clear slime and magnetic slime and galaxy slime and edible slime and thermochromic color-changing slime and OH MY LORD you get the point. And I have to touch them all and smell them all and pretend to find them interesting because you have to care about the little stuff or your kids won't trust you with the big stuff, but I only have so much room in my heart for slime and it's waning, it's waning... It’s only a matter of time.
Before what? Before an army of parents who have been pushed too far absolutely lose their shit and smash tablets and iPads and ban YouTube and draft petty change.org petitions to revoke your sponsorships and have complete psychotic breaks and binge eat slime and bathe in Borax and saline and float away on fluffy pillows of floam, leaving tweens with Borax burns to fend for themselves and make up life's lessons as they go.
It’s only a matter of time.