I've learned there are certain parts of parenting that sound fun, but totally aren't. For example, taking your kids to the park — an hour of getting ready for 15 minutes of playtime before an injury, fight, or tantrum (in front of "perfect moms") ruins everything. Also, preschool soccer games — an hour of preschoolers crying, running aimlessly, and sitting on the field, but surprisingly, very little soccer. But the top award for things that don't meet your parenting expectations goes to school dress-up days. There are so many reasons school dress-up days suck. So many, you guys. Getting your kids ready for school is hard enough, so do us parents really need to worry about dressing our kids a certain way in the name of school-related festivities? Really? We're going to make this a thing?
Here's why they suck for parents, who usually find out about them at the breakfast table the morning of, or actually read about them in the newsletter but then promptly forget: you don't have enough space in your brain for such things. And when you find out the morning of, you feel like you have to scramble and find the items of clothing your kids want/need to wear, only to remember you haven't done laundry in over a week or your kid doesn't actually own any sportsball jerseys or yellow clothes. (Seriously? A bright, neon yellow shirt is mandatory? WTF?).
They also suck for kids, if I'm being perfectly honest, and especially for the kids who don't fit in, but want to. No matter how many times you tell your kid it's OK for them to do their own thing — by either dressing up or not dressing up — it seems like some jerk child will tell them otherwise. Kids can be mean, you guys. They also really suck for kids with sensory issues. "Sorry, sweetheart, you don't have any pajamas that fit and also have short sleeves and shorts. No, I can't go get some. School starts in 15 minutes." They are also no fun for kids with anxiety. "Sorry, honey, you don't have black shoes. Can you wear your rainbow shoes that have literally every other color on them instead?" FML.
I honestly wish teachers and schools would skip dress-up days entirely. No matter what you call them or how psyched the kids are for them, when it comes to expectation versus reality, they just aren't fun.