Inspired by the now-infamous TIME magazine Boob-In-Mouth cover, a merry prankster or gang of pranksters decided to see what sort of advice famous internet columnists might dish out to someone in a really fucked up (but really fake sounding) situation involving their mother, their mother's breasts, and a younger sibling too fixated on a mother's breasts. Get it!? It's funny because the advice columnists responded with sincerity!
Both Salon's Cary Tennis and Slate's Emily Yoffe earnestly attempted to answer eerily similar questions posed by what must have been the same person. It's pretty gross, but here's the gist: According to this person who is probably in fake trouble, they and their brother were both fed by breast until they were 4 or 5. For years after that, their mother let them play with her breasts, just, whenever, for fun. Apparently they never knew that playing with your mom's boobs is inappropriate because they grew up in a place where they had no access to understanding the secondary sex characteristics of breasts. Now, they're teenagers and they're totally grossed out by the fact that their mother is doing the same thing to their younger sister, who is 9, but their mom won't stop. She's a boob-crazed maniac!
Both Yoffe and Tennis were upset by the letter. Yoffe suggested that her mother is a predator and that she needs to be reported to child protective services. Tennis, as Tennis tends to do, rambled on for several paragraphs about how important it is to be sensitive and introspective and get to know yourself and stuff before recommending that the NeverWeaned find a good therapist.
I have to doff my hat to the person or people responsible with tittybombing both Dear Prudence and Cary Tennis this week — that was some masterful 4Chan-level trolling. But I also have to click my tongue judgmentally at people who troll advice columnists. I love advice columns almost as much as I love reading the outraged comments people who don't know how to cook leave on Epicurious ("the recipe called for eggplant, and I don't like eggplant, so instead of eggplant I just used a block of American cheese and it turned out terrible"). I read Dear Prudence, Dear Sugar, Dear Coquette, various Ask A columns on The Hairpin. The writers vary wildly in style and ideology, but they're all fascinating for different reasons, and they're all trying to do the best job they can. They're trying to help the people who write them letters. They're not trying to be giggle fodder for some pranking high schoolers.
I don't understand the newfangled "jokes" the kids are telling these days.
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