Wednesday, January 30, 2013

First Anniversary Lists IV: The Complaint Department

Our Guest Writer, Partial/incomplete Monochrome Persona from The Complaint Department, has been working hard to bring you this list.  Warning: Partial/incomplete Monochrome Persona, or PiMP for short, has compiled and macro-infested the bitterest and snarkiest elements of Full Spectrum Mama’s first year, many of which Full Spectrum Mama might not even have noticed, saintly as she is.

1.     The Make-Your-Own-Problems Division.

We make most of our own problems. The Complaint Department suggests you unmake – or contend gracefully with – such self-created problems.

Therefore, The Complaint Department maintains a strict non-acceptance policy in its Make-Your-Own-Problems Division.

2.     Bullies.


Can you believe bullies are real? Grown-up bullies, too! Solo-style, as well as Group Models, including Mean (Old) Girls (and Boys), Institutional and Family-Pak…

Children who bully often learn to do so at home. Watch out for their parents.

Those in the school-disability-“special education” worlds who bully often do so from budget and staff frustrations. See if you can get through the armor to the love of children that brought them there in the first place. Bonne chance!

But, okay, sure. Complaints about bullies are acceptable during regular business hours.

3.     Sorry.

Say you’re sorry. No, PiMP does not care what happened OR whose fault it is and don’t Make The Complaint Department have to Pull This Car Over.

Oops! Sorry, wrong medium.

4.     Help.

If you have a partner, if you have a babysitter once a week, if you have a choice between working and not working (vs. those who must work), do not complain about not having any help. The Complaint Department knows far too many struggling single working parents to accept complaints in this area.

      a. Have some perspective, people.

5.     Snacks.

There is a required ten-minute minimum time-lapse between the asking for of the snacks.

Furthermore: If, sequentially, you have asked for and received, a banana, a cheese stick, a clementine, a yogurt squeezer, a bowl of cheddar bunnies, a granola bar, baby carrots and hummus, and raisins and nuts and an apple, that is enough.

6.     Money.

If you have never spent weeks worrying over running out of toothpaste, or had to choose between
a.     raiding those expired bags and cans at the back of the cupboard and paying for heat, or
b.     going grocery shopping,
do not complain about money.

Except, perhaps, to others of your ilk - but definitely check their ilk to be sure.

Yes, we at The Complaint Department know that you say things like, “We’re all struggling right now” to express a sense of, “Wow, I get it,” but that’s just trifling.

You know who gets it? PiMP and her friend over here who both just bought one bag of cotton candy even though we each have two children because those bad boys cost FOUR DOLLARS.

Please see 4.a.

                  The Complaint Department will only accept complaints about money from those with a  
                  generously allotted income limit of $30,000 and below. (F.Y.I.: it is remarkably easy to
                  join this select group, albeit exponentially harder to leave.) Most other complaints about
                  money will be deemed to fall under Rule 1, above.

7.     Children.

                  If you have mentally and physically healthy, neurotypical children, do not complain about them under most circumstances.
In particular, you shall not complain about them to people who have no children, whether by choice or via “the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune."
Nor shall you complain about them to people who have children who have issues of health, learning differences, disabilities, sensory or social issues or other significant differences or impairments…

If you must complain, then kindly preface your complaint with, “Praise the universe, I am very lucky to have such an easy life compared to the lives of those with harder lives” (which will probably be answered with “Praise the universe, I am very lucky to have the child/life etc. that I have…” BUT the preface should still be uttered as a preventative measure).

And please see 4.a.

8.    Speculation and Normalcy.

The Complaint Department thinks everyone is REAL SPECIAL. How did they get that way? We do not know. How should you act around them? Ditto.

Our affiliate, Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg has formulated some great models around dealing with people. Here’s one:

9.     Special Dispensations. 

True Friends, Wise Ones, Elders, Those Who Get It, Family Members from Group A,* and, generally, people who don’t take themselves all that seriously or are seriously cute (such as some children) are not subject to the above Complaint Department Guidelines.

Now that The Complaint Department has brought you this exhaustive list, The Complaint Department is closed. The Complaint Department will re-open on the 32nd of Nevruary.**

Partial/incomplete Monochrome Persona

* Family Group A is a generic term for certain members of all families and consists of non-offensive family members.
** Thanks to Uncle G. Fullalove (Family Group A+) for introducing the Full Spectrum family to this convenient date.


  1. Don't look now, but I think this guest writer is looking to take over your blog. S/he has a completely different tone from yours, but is every bit as insightful. Maybe you should have her/him write a guest column every once in while, so you can take a break.

    1. Dear Mister Philip Jones,
      Thank you for your helpful yet cautionary comment.
      I am concerned, now, that PiMP may have his/her sights on the extremely **lucrative** element of the FSM blogosphere.
      In deep thought,


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