A study by Clayborne et al., has found a direct link between children causing massive destruction to the home and parents chatting on the phone. Additional correlations were found with children wanting snacks, screaming loudly, pulling up chairs to countertops to grab sharp knives, suddenly discovering where the Sharpies are hidden, and other destructive behaviors. The correlations peaked when a parent answers the phone and appears to either be distressed or enjoying the conversation.
Mother of two, Kate Williams, agrees with the findings. “My child was once able to unlock a safe where I keep all of my permanent markers and tag my entire kitchen while I was on a stroke inducing phone call with Comcast customer service. Her incredible skill set during that time defies logic.”
The researchers warn parents that the more they seem to be enjoying the phone conversation (or alternatively hating the conversation, like speaking to a bill collector), the more likely children appear to scream, beg for snacks, need Band-Aids, empty cabinets or wreck the entire house. They recommend parents refrain from speaking on the phone until their children hit high school.
While researchers are currently unable to determine why a child would suddenly want to teepee the whole house with toilet paper while their mother is chatting happily with an old friend, they believe this is the first step to helping parents survive the insanity. Additional studies are needed.