There is an article in the New York Post titled “Moms paying pros $1,000 to pack their kids for camp.”  Apparently rich New York City mothers are hiring “professional organizers” to pack their children’s bags when it’s time to go to summer camp.

Resourceful Consultants is just one company who is privileged to take advantage of the laziness and competitiveness of the over-privileged.

“It takes three to four hours to pack for clients who demand that she fit all of the comforts of home in the luggage, including delicate touches like French-milled soaps and scented candles.  At $250 an hour, the cost for a well-packed kid can run $1,000.”

Please give me a moment to just…well, to just absorb that.  $1000 to throw some stuff in a suitcase for a child.  Let’s assume that the summer camp the child is attending provides all the basic amenities like food, toilet paper, and bedding.  What then, are these kids in such dire need of that it takes four hours to pack for them?  Things like 1000-thread count sheets, French-milled soaps and scented candles.

I will pass over the idea of allowing children to adorn their camp rooms with open flames.  I will even pass over the requirement that their soap be milled in France.  Let’s just focus on this statement:  “For a lot of mothers, particularly when their child is going away for the first time, it’s very stressful.”

Who is the stressed-out mommy?

Let me paint a picture of these stressed-out mommies.  They have an unlimited amount of money.  They live in the highest-quality homes with the highest-quality furnishings.  They always have fully-stocked pantries and usually someone to cook their meals for them, customizing it to whatever particular diet they’re following.  They have at least one person, maybe two, to keep their house clean and organized at all times.  They have a nanny (or two) to make sure that the children are not only completely taken care of according to whatever arbitrary “rules” the upper-crust mommies are following, but they also ensure that the children are only present in their lives when they are in the mood for a visit.  Yes, these mothers are so stressed out over the thought of little Roberta going away to camp for the first time that they just can’t handle the trauma of packing their luggage for them.  Dear heavens, they flutter, what if I don’t pack the right things?

The “right things” that stressed-out mommy is afraid she’ll overlook in packing are not things like clean underwear, a toothbrush, and some canteen money.  She’s not even worried that little Roberta will miss her $2000 Egyptian cotton sheets and her delicately-scented savon.  No, what stressed-out mommy is worried about is that Barbara from Save the Minks or Elaine from the day spa or Lenora who lives next door in the Hamptons will have packed an even more fancy bunch of crap than she has.  That would make stressed-out mommy a bad mother!

I am willing to bet that 80% of these kids that are being sent to their $10,000 “camps” would have just as much fun at a camp where they live in tents and bang sticks together to scare off mountain lions.  They would probably love to sit around a campfire at night, everyone reeking of mosquito spray, and roast marshmallows.  They would probably love more than anything being removed from the ridiculous amount of “be as good as, if not better than” pressure that exists in their everyday lives.  How much do you bet these kids don’t even miss their stressed-out mommies at all?  After all, they have no relationship with them whatsoever.  Stressed-out mommy is thrilled to have one less stressor missing from her life for the summer.

Peeling apart the onion of the $10,000 summer camp is a daunting project for another article.  But let me just leave you with this:  Wouldn’t it be awesome if those camps confiscated all the fancy stuff that stressed-out mommy absolutely needs to send with little Roberta for comfort?  Wouldn’t it be great if the kids all slept in little bunkrooms and ate hamburgers and milk shakes in the common dining room?  Wouldn’t it be refreshing to find that the kids were just allowed to be kids, minus candles and special diets and a re-creation of their own bedroom?  Maybe these kids would have a chance of growing up realizing that their sheltered little existence is not reality.

In the meantime, I sure hope that stressed-out mommy somehow manages to make it through this traumatic experience.

Stressed Mom Camp


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