Novelty T-shirts send a damaging message to your kid.
It’s been almost a year since Caylee Anthony’s body was found, and her mother Casey has been sitting in jail waiting for her first-degree murder trial to begin. Meanwhile, those who have been following the tragedy continue to speculate on how and why Caylee met her terrible fate, shoved into a plastic garbage bag and tossed into the woods.
Now what the little girl was last wearing is creating even more speculation. According to police reports, Caylee was wearing a shirt that said “Big Trouble Comes in Small Packages.” The National Enquirer reports: “In an act that police believe shows she carefully planned her daughter Caylee’s murder, Casey dressed the little girl in a T-shirt that sadistically spelled out her sick motive for killing the child.”
Does that mean anyone who buys their kid a shirt that says “Here comes trouble” or “Rotten to the Core” is harboring some secret resentment against their child? How does labeling our kids for all the world to see affect their self-esteem?
The prognosis isn’t positive, says psychologist Dr. Michelle Golland. “If we perpetuate a negative stereotype of our child, it can become self-fulfilling prophecy — reinforcing negative behavior.” Dr. Golland wonders what the benefit is of letting a child wear a shirt that highlights a negative trait in the first place. “Why not highlight something positive instead?” She also warns that if your kid’s wearing a shirt that says “Bratty” or “Sassy,” that is how others will perceive your child.