Image via Family Fun Pack/YouTube
“Who’s going to blow up the balloons?” you’ll get asked just before the kids start arriving for the party in their best Batman outfits and tutus (not on the same kid, obviously). It’s a moment of tension - after all, without balloons, the party may as well never have happened. What nobody ever talks about is the abject misery and danger balloons can cause. Until now.
1. There’s always one child (or adult who snuck in just to steal the Flings) with a latex allergy*. This person then has to be shielded at all costs against touching one. This sounds easy enough, but balloons have a life of their own. As soon as their strings come loose, and they will, latex allergy person will be seen backing into your refrigerator to avoid turning purple and swelling up… like a balloon.
2. Child profile number two: THAT kid who loves to make the balloon squeal like a pig being slaughtered. Over and over. Then he’ll let it go with great hilarity as it makes its dying flatulent flflflflflflfpppp before flopping wetly onto your head. Two or three kids doing this at the same time is madness.
3. Stupid dogs, cats and babies are attracted to burst balloons. You need spotters and balloon-bit ninjas to make sure every piece is picked up before it’s discovered and expensive hospital or veterinary bills result.
4. Towards the end of the party some kid standing right behind you will “accidentally” poke something sharp into a balloon, sending you cowering under the coffee table in shell shock. Then ALL the kids will do it, except that one toddler who really wanted to keep her balloon forever-and-ever only it will get popped anyway and the tears and shrieks drown out the mayhem of bursting latex.
5. You can’t escape the balloon problem by holding the party at a restaurant. If anything, it’s worse. Younger children try to hold the balloons on those very pointy sticks at the table, threatening to knock over strawberry milkshakes and making eating impossible. They’ll also think it’s amusing to bash you (or the hapless diners behind you at the next table) over the head. Ha ha! Not.
6. Still, after you’ve finished at the restaurant and begged for replacement balloons for all three children, you get to have a relaxing drive home. Nope. Ever driven in a car with a stray balloon with the windows open? Even with the windows closed, you’re facing a multi-vehicle pile-up as the unpredictable orbit of a buoyant balloon includes, predictably, the face of the driver. Screams of delight rapidly turn to ones of terror the driver flails at the statically attracted thing bouncing off his nose.
“Who’s going to blow up the balloons?” you hear again.
It’s just not a party without balloons.
*Latex allergies can be very serious, if you know someone has a latex allergy, consider NOT having balloons at your child's party.
Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.
Do your kids ask for balloons at their parties?