Almost every parent has had to experience their child throwing a tantrum and making a big scene in public in order to get a toy or candy. While some parents are inoculated to their child’s tears and are able to deny these requests without a second thought, others are willing to give in in order to end their child’s embarrassing display or make them happy.
But for some low-income parents, there is the added concern about whether they can even afford such treats for their kids, as well as anger over the way stores are setup to make such dilemmas almost inevitable. One such Indonesian father recently wrote an open letter to the country’s grocery and convenience stores that has gone viral online, begging them to remove Kinder Joy candy eggs (which consist of the double threat of chocolate filled with toys) from the impulse purchase section near their cashiers.
The letter, which is addressed to all supermarkets and minimarkets in Indonesia, clearly struck a nerve with other Indonesians, leading to the post being shared over 31,000 times already.
Stating that he represents fathers all over Indonesia, Facebook user Alice Pramac pleads with the stores to move the Kinder Joy eggs away from their cashiers for a few reasons. First, he said that candy’s placement leads to embarrassment when his child inevitably asks for one if he doesn’t buy it.
His second point is that the candies are very expensive, equivalent to 1 liter of cooking oil. Prices for Kinder Joy can be around IDR10,000 – 15,000 (USD 0.70-1), although Alice’s post indicates he has to pay IDR15,000 for them at the store.
“Other people may already be rich and can buy many of these items, but I am just a low-paid clerk who can only afford toys that cost Rp 2,000, and even then my hands are shaking while paying,” Alice writes in the post.
His third point says that he now has to worry about buying the Kinder candy every time he goes to the store. And because he has two children, it costs him IDR30,000, which he said he could use instaed to buy 5 kg of rice – enough for a month’s worth of meals.
He ends the letter by asking that the shops “consider and realize my dreams as well as the dreams of every father in this country.”
According to his Facebook information, Alice resides in Sungguminasa, South Sulawesi, where the minimum wage is just about IDR2.6 million per month.
While many of the commenters sympathized and agreed with the viral post, some argued that it was the responsibility of a parent to teach their children discipline and that if they gave into their child throwing a tantrum over candy or toys, that would simply teach them that throwing a tantrum is a valid way to get what you want.