- Parents are recapping the “delulu” (or delusional) Christmas lists compiled by their Gen Alpha children.
- They’re asking for designer clothing and luxury skincare products. One 10-year-old requested a car.
- Some defended the hope and boundless optimism of kids, saying it’s their job to be delusional.
This holiday season, amid a fraught US economy and inflation concerns, wearied parents are turning to TikTok to vent about the “delulu” — or internet speak for delusional — Christmas wishlists compiled by their young kids.
“I just found out that my nine-year-old thinks we live in a different tax bracket,” Annabel Havill said in a November 29 clip with 1.7 million views. On her daughter’s list this year? Lululemon leggings, an Apple Watch, and multiple luxury skincare sets.
“I don’t think she’s gotten the memo about inflation,” Havill quipped.
The mom’s 12-year-old son also had high hopes, she recounted in a second video. He pointed to the online resale site StockX to request Yeezy and streetwear brand A Bathing Ape items. “Get a job,” Havill deadpanned.
While Havill, 41, told Business Insider her TikToks were intended to be humorous — and she even plans to get her kids most of the presents they requested, with a $600 budget in mind for each — the larger message she wanted to impart was one of sensitivity and humility in the face of those who are less fortunate.
“In this economy, it is not glamorous and it is not OK to flaunt your wealth, and that’s something that I tell my kids,” she said, adding that her parents were factory workers (though she and her husband are now middle class). “There’s people that are struggling to buy groceries right now.”
Havill is not the only parent sharing and venting about the high-cost items their Gen Alpha children are putting on their Christmas wish lists.
One 10-year-old requested a car in a viral PowerPoint presentation
Amanda Elias told Business Insider her 10-year-old son, Kellen, usually uses the Apple Notes app to communicate his Christmas wishes to family members who live out of town. This year, he decided to outline them in a full-fledged PowerPoint presentation.
In a video with 12 million views, Kellen begins with a bang, requesting a $122,000 Dodge Challenger, but then moves on to (relatively) more reasonable asks, including $25 Spider-Man pajamas, as well as a litany of designer clothing, shoes, and electronics. His presentation apparently included 30 slides.
“If I knew how to laugh without smiling right now, I would do it,” Elias, 32, huffs behind the camera. “You literally think I’m an ATM.” (Nevertheless, she confirmed to BI that Kellen’s getting some of the items on his list, including a Fear of God Essentials hoodie, Crocs, jewelry, gift cards, and the pajamas.)
Keya James went similarly viral last week, recapping her 10-year-old daughter’s “bougie” Christmas list, which included a new iPhone, Uggs, Lululemon and Sephora gift cards, Dior sneakers, and a permanently welded bracelet.
“She thinks I’m rich,” James wrote.
As for Kellen, many viewers admired his endearing moxie, and even cheered the strategic nature of the presentation. “I wanna be this delulu,” one viewer wrote. Another added: “This is actually smart. He started w/ the most expensive so the other things seemed cheap.”
Commenters argued it’s a child’s job to be delusional
While Havill said her commentary was intended to be tongue-in-cheek, others defended the delusions of children, swinging back against commenters who called them privileged or labeled them “iPad kids.”
“If you really think that it’s a child’s role to be worried about finances, that’s weird,” the TikToker Alanna Hill retorted last week, addressing parents who she said were putting their kids on blast. “It’s a child’s job to be delusional … They still have hope in this world.”
For her part, Elias told BI she has mixed feelings about this assessment. “While I do agree kids shouldn’t worry about finances, I’ve always raised my son to be realistic with his expectations so that he doesn’t get disappointed,” she said.
Havill also agreed, in part. “They definitely should have optimism, and they definitely should want more than we can give,” she said. But Havill also noted that ambition and innovation are often born of a sense of need.
“I want my kids to have everything that I didn’t have, but I also want to keep them very well grounded.”