Have you ever been out and about – or worse, on holidays – when your child’s favourite toy has simply disappeared? Retraced your steps frantically with a sobbing kiddo, all to no avail?
Come back, Teddy!
Turns out you’re not alone and in fact this is such a thing that one company has commissioned some research into this sad state of affairs. It might make you feel a little better if your child’s toy has gone AWOL, knowing that other parents have been there and survived?
Not only that, those parents have shared some of the tall tales they’ve told their child to explain the disappearance of their favourite little buddy.
Announcing a new UK initiative to help reunite kids and their toys, Karen Mullins from holiday rental company HomeAway told The Mirror that: “Nothing ruins the relaxation of a family holiday quicker than a lost teddy bear. That’s why this summer HomeAway is launching the HomeAway Teddy Express,” she continued.
“A new service which will return any teddy’s left in HomeAway properties to their owner free of charge.”
Genius work, guys!
Soft toy stats
HomeAway’s very important research found that losing a toy has the potential to wreak havoc on holidays.
They found out that “43 percent of parents saying they considered ending a family holiday early because of the loss of a cuddly toy, it turns out the unofficial family member really does have a huge impact on how your trip goes.”
Apparently getting a toy back home can cost around $300 on average, indicating that intrepid teddies might be flying home in tiny-but-pricey lear jets into the waiting arms of children.
HomeAway also noted that “four-fifths of kids in the UK have a favourite soft toy that goes everywhere with them.”
So that’s a lot of potential for ruined shopping trips and holidays right there. Gulp.
Tall toy tales
They also looked into what parents tell their kids when toys go AWOL and there are some excellent tall tales in there.
Here are the top ten:
- Gone on holiday
- Gone to heaven
- Visiting Father Christmas to tell him what you want for Christmas
- Gone on a top-secret mission
- A ghost took it
- Gone to live with the man on the moon
- Went to have tea with the Queen and decided to stay
- Taken by a fox
- Once you reach a certain age the fairies take the bears to give to baby children
- Gone to find a girlfriend
So if you landed here searching “what to tell my child about lost toy” or “child bereft after losing teddy” then maybe the top ten white lies told by parents who’ve lived through this might be helpful?!
Or you could tell them the truth. That’s a good idea too.
Good on you HomeAway. Doing God’s work.