Hey! Hallmark! Where Are All The Dysfunctional Family Cards?

This goes into the books for something I thought of first but someone else is going to have to implement.

I want Hallmark to create a Dysfunctional Families Division.

Yes. I’m putting my idea out there for Hallmark to see.

Come on, Hallmark. Run with it!

I hate searching for a Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or birthday cards for my parents. I’m a crappy daughter. Just ask them. But I’m not so crappy that I don’t send them a card for birthdays and other holidays.

I’m not asking for mean cards. I don’t want them to say “I hate you!” or “You screwed up my life!” or “Thanks for nothing!” I’m crappy but I’m not cruel. But all of this “You were always there for me” or “Thank you for being the kind of (parent) that is so easy to love!” or “I am so lucky to have you for a (parent)!” I’m just not feelin’ it.

I’m pretty organized. I have one of those handy, dandy card organizers. On the rare occasion that I find more than one card that would suffice for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or birthday? I buy them all. Then I stick them in my handy, dandy card organizer so I’m ready for the next year. Luckily, last year was one of those banner years. I was armed and ready for this Father’s Day.

My husband? Not so much.

“Damn. Publix was closed by the time I got there. I couldn’t get a card for my dad!” He looks at me with a sheepish grin on his face that means, “So you’ll go get a card for me tomorrow….right?”

Ahhhh, no.

“Kroger is open until midnight,” I say, not even looking up from my book.

He sighs and heads back out the door.

An hour later. Yes, a full hour later, he arrives back home. With one card.

“Uhg!” He flops into the house and slams the single, one ounce card onto the counter.

“Picking out a card for my dad is like going through therapy,” he laments.


I know exactly how he feels.


Filed under family

21 responses to “Hey! Hallmark! Where Are All The Dysfunctional Family Cards?

  1. I think your idea is sure to make millions…

  2. When Hallmark gets back to you to say they have implemented your idea, please let us know. I want to get there early to buy cards for every holiday for my mother. Mother’s Day is the worst one for me – I do what you do – buy every one I can find that remotely satisfies my need to gain her approval by getting her a card without making me want to throw up in the card aisle with the sappy sentiment that I just don’t feel. Some years, I just can’t find anything. That is when I go to my handy dandy card box (like yours – purchased years ago at Hallmark!) and find one that I purchased years before, just in case!

    • PS – I am glad to know I am not the only one. I always have felt a measure of guilt over this. No more!

      • Donna

        I was just thinking of the samevthing this morning! I didn’t get my Dad a card this year, but I would like to find a card to say all the things that he didn’t do for me. Glad I am not alone.

  3. LOL—Joe bribed Cole to make his cards for him. He hated to card shop, did it poorly–felt the cost was outrageous. My mother use to ask me to send her unsigned cards so she could reuse them because I did such a great job picking them out. I thought what a great idea and asked her to do the same thing. I liked her cards better than mine–So silly!!
    I think your idea is a money maker!!

  4. Money smart indeed…I have the same problem for my husband on our anniversary..we’ve been thru lots and I don’t feel that sappy…but his family likes sappy cards, so he feels hurt if he doesn’t get a sappy one. So I suck it up and give him a sappy card, because after all, they are for the RECEIVERS not so much for us. Whatever makes him happy. For my Dad, well, I’d give a lot to have him still here to give a card to. Any card.

  5. Kristin

    @Dawn that was a great thing for me to read; I was just about to comment that I just can’t pick the sappy cards for my Dad because he was not a very good father to me. I always manage to find one that says something funny, or generic like “Hope you have a peaceful and relaxing Father’s Day!”. But after your comment, I’m going to remind myself that I am lucky he is here to give a card to at all.

  6. I’ve been toying with the idea of making a line of gritty-realism greeting cards for some time. Like, “I’m sorry you got caught calling in sick to work,” and that sort of thing. I think dysfunctional family cards would be a great addition.

    FRONT: A family member was in therapy and just discovered a repressed memory.
    INSIDE: Looks like you have to defend yourself. Have fun!

    At least that is how it might work in my family. 🙂

  7. You crack me up… (Don’t you love the way kids flounce and flop?)

  8. I send my dad a card with all those mushy words on it because I mean them, but sometimes I pick out a card to give to my mother and just want to vomit because the words are just so wrong and would be hypocritical to send!

  9. Word.

    Same thing. Every year. I go to several stores before I find one that doesn’t make me want to throw up. I think I need to start making my own.

  10. We could start our own line.

    Hey, you probably did the best you could with that pickled liver of yours…

    I didn’t expect much; neither should you.

    Thanks to our role model, I am a better parent.

    Actually, one thing that irks me about the cards is that they print them in silver or grey and people with cataracts, macular degeneration, and all the things old eyes get, can’t read them.

  11. The card I found:
    Outside: It’s Father’s Day! I got you a card!
    Inside: This is it.

    It’s especially hard to find sympathy cards. Soooooo over the top.

  12. Miss Mel

    This made me smile! I HATE trying to pick out a card that just doesn’t fit my feelings for my hateful family……The last Father’s Day card read “may you get all that you want”, knowing full well it wasn’t a relationship with me! (I’m ok with that so you can laugh). I decided instead of having to settle on a card that was tongue in cheek, I just won’t send anymore. Now, if Hallmark will pick up on your idea, my family will get one for every holiday!

  13. Deborah

    great idea. its like puling teeth for me to get a card for my mother. they don’t make enough generic cards for people who grew up with not having their mom as their best friend.

  14. Barb

    Jane, Jane, Jane… you are clearly NOT alone… my sister and I (step-sister who grew up with my dad who walked out on me… she and I met 3 years ago when at age 39 I moved into my dad’s house)… we deal with this every year as I beg her to please come over for Father’s Day so I don’t have to pretend alone! It is sooooo exhausting… I’m not sure what is worse, spending holidays lamenting the lack of family or spending them lamenting the presence of them… ugh!

  15. This is so funny! I can totally relate. The card thing was a problem for years. Now my sister and I are writing a blog about our dysfunctional family (hopefully humerous). Check it out at http://www.farfromnormal.net.

  16. Anne

    OMG! I have been telling my sister that Hallmark needs to develop a line of dysfunctional family cards for years! As I searched for an appropriate birthday card for my father the other day, I found myself talking to the mushy, lovey-dovey cards, telling them “we don’t have that kind of relationship!”. Why can’t there be a nice card, with a picture on the front that simply says “happy birthday” on the inside?

  17. Debbie

    My sister and I have the same evil mother and we have also been contemplating creating a dysfunctional family card line. Example: Outside: Happy Birthday! Inside: Forty years of feeling fat, ugly, and inadequte……….thanks Mom!

  18. Mrs. Victoria

    I had this idea more than 16 years ago! To save me from frustration I buy a card that says the least or just a blank card & put Happy Mothers Day inside. I don’t bother writing nice things or putting gift cards anymore bc she is so ungrateful. My ‘Dad’ gets no card. Hallmark will never do this. I’m sure they pride themselves on nicey nicey cards. FYI- Spencer’s at the mall has some funny cards if you’re really looking.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s