smartphone wish

Get ready to break out the tissues for this one.

Now I know what you’re thinking: “A kid wishing to be a smartphone? What’s sad about that? It sounds hilarious!” Trust me, I thought the same thing too.

Then I read the story that’s been trending online in Japan, and, well, let’s just say that my vision is a little blurry as I type these words.

In the interest of not giving anything away, let’s get right into the story, translated here:

‘One night after a woman and her husband finished dinner, they sat down exhausted in the living room together.

The woman was an elementary school teacher, and she had to finish grading assignments she’d set for her students, which was to write about something they wished for. Her husband joined her on the couch with his smartphone in hand, finally able to relax after a long day.

Just when the woman thought she’d finished correcting the final essay, she noticed another one that she’d apparently forgotten. This is what it read:

“My wish is to become a smartphone. It’s my wish because my mom and dad really love their smartphones.

My mom and dad only pay attention to their phones, and sometimes they forget all about me.

When my my mom and dad come home tired from work, they spend time with their phones, not me. Even when my mom or dad is doing something important, if their phone even rings just once, they pick it up right away. But they don’t do that for me, even if I’m crying.

My mom and dad play games on their phone, not with me. When they’re talking with someone on the phone, even if I’m excited about something and want to tell them, they just shush me and tell me to go away.

So that’s why my wish is to be a smartphone. Because then maybe my parents would love me as much as their phones.”

The woman read the essay in tears. Her husband asked what was the matter, and she showed him the essay. He quickly read it then asked her which student had written such a sad essay.

It was then that the woman realized where this “extra” essay had come from; it had been slipped in there without her noticing.

“It wasn’t one of my students who wrote it,” the woman answered. “It was our son.”‘

Aaaand I need another box of tissues. Even if the story is a little too convenient and potentially not even true, that doesn’t make it any less impactful as a piece of fiction.

Sometimes parents underestimate how observant their kids can be. Kids notice when they’re being ignored in favor of other things, even moreso when the ones ignoring them are their parents. And they notice when their mom is correcting papers and they have a perfect opportunity to try to get through to her.

Here’s what Japanese netizens had to say after their hearts recovered from such an intense wringing:

“Well, this applies to pretty much every modern parent.”
“I- I’m not crying! Those water droplets on my smartphone are just my background!”
“This hits close to home, except for my parents it was TV.”
“I feel for the kid. Everywhere I go, I see parents ignoring their kids and their eyes on their phones.”
“Parents need to remember that simply sharing the same space isn’t enough. Kids need interaction to know that they are loved.”

Agreed on all points! Even if parents aren’t actively trying to hurt their children or don’t realize what they’re doing, their apathy can leave scars that will stay with the kids for the rest of their lives.

So even if this story is just something someone wrote and shared online to make a point, if it helps even one person out there realize that they should put down the phone for a second and hang out with their kid, then I call it a success.

Source: Gunosy via My Game News Flash
Featured/top image: Flickr/Miki Yoshihito