This is our 4th most-read article of 2018.
Originally published March 5.
Hello, you have reached the Toddler Feelings Helpline. Please choose from the following options:
— If Mama went to the store for a minute but you are pretty sure she’s never coming back, please mash all of the keys but mostly 1.
— If you still feel pretty messed up about how they were just going to burn the Velveteen Rabbit, please mash all of the keys but mostly 2.
— If you don’t like the way your shirt is right now, please hit a sibling for no reason.
— If you are fine with just letting boogers run all down your face and not even acknowledging it, even when they start to seep into your mouth, please mash 4.
— If you do not like the way your morning toast was prepared, please press 9, and then 1, and then 1, and then hide the phone in a laundry basket.
— If the dog has repeatedly spurned your attempts to ride him like a pony, please mash 6.
— If your parents provided you with toys to cultivate play-based curiosity and spatial awareness when all you really needed was senseless flashing lights and electronic sound, mash 7.
— If you wanted the green one and not the blue one and now you are inconsolable, please throw the phone through a screen door.
— If you are crying but you don’t remember why, please mash 9.
— If you’ve come to the halting realization that every single aspect of your life is decided by another person and that you truly have no agency over your own thoughts or existence, please remove all of your clothing and flee screaming in the direction of your nearest judgmental neighbor.
— If you have a poop in your pants that you’re not going to tell anyone about, please mash 12.
To hear these options again, please smash the phone against an expensive electronic device until someone comes to see what you are doing, or simply stay on the line.