My Family Stickers … please explain?

Okay, this has been rattling around in my head for quite sometime but it’s come to a point where I just have to get it out there – part vent, part genuine enquiry … what is the go with those My Family Stickers that appear to be breeding upon urban 4WDs in my general vicinity?

It started innocently enough. I was at a barbecue getting on my soapbox about frangipani flower stickers on cars, when a friend piped up with ‘what about those My Family stickers?’. ‘What my family stickers?’ I responded. He proceeded to tell me about white stick people that were appearing on cars denoting each member of the family that rides in that car. When I looked baffled, he prophetically warned “Now I’ve told you about them, you’ll see them everywhere.”

That was some time ago, and I now smile ruefully at my innocence back then, my PMFO days (Pre My Family Onslaught). I have, I must admit, become peversely fascinated with them, checking out the car in front’s stick figures when I’m stopped at the lights.

“Oh they’ve got 3 children, a dog and a cat,” I think to myself.

“She likes to run, and he likes to barbecue,” I think as I pull up next to another.

“What’s that small thing at the end? A duck perhaps,” I think as I try and make out the myriad of family members adorning a Honda Odyssey.

But today, a new thought. I caught myself wondering if I was to purchase a My Family for our car, how would I choose a sticker that defines me? The ‘mother’ ones I see most are undoubtedly ‘Running Mum’, complete with short running shorts, crop top and pony tail, and ‘Shopping Mum’, laden with designer shopping bags, short LBD and a side pony. Both would be the antithesis of me.

As a side note, in those first four months of Jarvis’s life when every car trip had a screaming sound track I loathed ‘Running Mum’ and ‘Shopping Mum’ – I took their carefree, stick figures as a personal affront to my car driving hell.

So, anyway stick figure me. Google helps me find My Family Shop Online. I click on Mothers and there are 18 options to choose from, I think about my hobbies and interests as I browse the options on offer. ‘Corporate Mum’? Well, she does have a laptop, but she also is holding a mobile and wearing a business suit – not very me. Next …

‘Ball of wool mum?’ Too Crafty. ‘Soccer Ball or Footy Mum?’ Too sporty! ‘Surf board mum?’ ditto. Following are a whole heap of action mums – ‘Army Mum’, ‘Bicycle Mum’ and ‘Tennis Mum’… I suddenly feel even more of a couch potato.

The closest to me I can get is ‘Book Mum’ or ‘Jeans and tee mum’ – at least Jeans and Tee Mum has curly hair.

Feeling even more sure that ‘My Family’  is not for me and that I am boring and devoid of a popular hobby I think about what my sticker would look like. Unruly wavy hair? Check. A laptop with baby on knee? Check. Leg Hair? Check. Piles of washing as a backdrop? Check. Yep, that pretty much would sum me up. Just call me feral, blogging, cleaning allergy Mum. Probably not much of a market for that one. And if there was, it’s probably not something you’d go around advertising on the back of your car.

Maybe they’re meant to be purely aspirational, a symbol of your most perfect self? If that’s the case I’d settle for straightened hair, a leg wax and a ironing lady to take care of the endless piles of washing.

But the thing I most want to know is what started this and why is it spreading like wildfire around the suburbs? Judging by the number of My Families I see on a daily basis, about 1 in 5 families have these stickers (source: my own conjured calculation) , so someone out there reading this must have them adorned on their vehicle.

Please explain … Is it a short hand way of discerning if you have common interests with other families on the drop off run? A bit of fun? And how did you decide what mum best suited you? Or are you as befuddled as I am?

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29 thoughts on “My Family Stickers … please explain?

  1. I have seen them also and wondered what the go with them was. I wouldn’t know which mother to pick – maybe I could get my son to pick one, that would be interesting to see what he thinks.

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  2. I hadn’t seen them and now I’m going to blame you for ruining it for me. I was oblivious before!

    I can’t see a mum that fits me, possibly the gardening one.

    ALSO! There are no ducks?! How could I possibly do a ‘My Family’ properly without a string of ducks? I see a chicken (I’d need 15 chickens though…) but no ducks! Shame shame shame.

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    • Just you wait Veronica – I promise you a sighting soon! The ducks would definitely feel left out – I see that you can request a symbol on the website. Maybe request a duck and see what they say. I was thinking of requesting hairy legged, blogging, messy mum to see if they’d whip me up one! he he.

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  3. We had wondered about the stickers ourselves…….but then i was worried that since we all nosy onto the other mf stickers, perhaps covering the car with stickers of 1 hairy-legged, overweight lady, plus another lady, 2 cat stickers and obviously no children stickers, it might be giving too much away about the personal life of the owners of said car.

    I’m all for being proud of what you’ve got, but sometimes, when is showing too much of yourself too much? And when does it become all a bit too smug?

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  4. I don’t get these either. We took a quick trip to QLD recently, and they were everywhere. They’re definitely on par with the frangipani stickers.

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  5. Hahaha. These things are the new frangipani stickers 😉 I’d totally be ‘jeans and tee mum” too- boring!!!

    It actually started off as a FaceBook app thing that you could put on your wall, about 3 years ago when FB wasn’t so crap. Goodness only knows why it took so long to catch on!! 😉

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  6. Brilliantly questioned!
    I too have wondered about a] purpose and b] the people who feel the need to identify themselves this way, because it’s not just about families.
    There are lots and lots of cars in our area that are adorned with these little stick people and their associated creatures [animals] and we generally comment on the anomolies eg:
    Oh those people only have a dog [no children] or
    Ooh look at that, those people have 10 kids….hang on….yep, 10!
    I can’t wait to sit behind a car that proudly displays no people just a cat and a pooch in the doghouse.
    The most amazing thing about this phenomenom is that I have never once seen advertising in the print media or on tv. It’s a bit insidious but kudos to the creators ’cause they’re no doubt proudly displaying a little stick figure rolling in dough on the back of their caboose.

    I look forward to reading all of your responses,

    Felicity x

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  7. I havn’t seen them yet? Mine would be, Mum is going to crack, Dad is tuning us out and we are on our way to nannas beacause my kids are feral.

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  8. My initial thought was ‘cute’… my next thought was ‘I don’t want every other person to know the business of my family’… and I always get a tear when I see the baby with angel wings…

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  9. I had one when it was strictly a FB app … I saw one of the back window of a car the other day and thought “What the?” Hahahaha

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  10. Haven’t seen that yet in my sburb. Maybe I should be the pioneer? Happy weekend!

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  11. I haven’t seen these on any cars! FB yes, cars, no. I am going to now aren’t I?

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  12. On facebook, I thought the little families were cool- because it’s your friends/family who see them, not the world.
    I have seen them on cars- with the people’s names printed underneath and everything… I don’t understand why you’d want to share that kind of info with everyone who parks/drives near your car!

    I also think the babies with angel wings are sad.

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  13. I love this blog!! I too have wondered about the My Family Stickers but for me it was more the one’s who drive a smallish car and yet going by the stickers imply they have 7 children, 4 cats, and 3 dogs etc? Now they either own a small car AND a bus OR they are having a laugh at all the “serious” my family sticker people. I will not be partaking in the my family sticker fad as I too identify with your “persona”, curly crazy hair, laptop, messy house and would give my right arm for a cleaner 🙂 AND I don’t think they have “giant” family stickers for my super doopa tall family haha. Thankfully I’m sure just like the horrible frangipani flower trend this is a trend that will also pass.

    FYI I saw a car yesterday that implied they had 7 horses – wow!

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  14. you are speaking my language, sista-friend! those stickers are moving targets for ridicule and mockery…. these stick people must be stopped.

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  15. Brilliant! We were just having this conversation the other day as we passed yet another vehicle with their perfect family on the side – wondering which marketing company had started this one – thought they must have been giving them away with petrol vouchers or something! What if you’re a single mum or even just a single driver with no kids – perhaps there’s a ‘driving dating’ thing that could work here?!!!! Have supressed my inadequate feelings of being just a DINK family. LOL.

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  16. well, I am guilty of the “My family” sticker on our car. Hubby is golfing dad, I am running Mum, then the 2 kids (boy & girl) and two cats…. I think they are cute and like checking out other “My family” stickers on other cars..
    What about a “writing mum” Bel – they should invent one I think!

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  17. ok im also a victim of these, they had an application on facebook before the car stickers come out, you could do your family and stick it to your page, who ever made them to a car sticke is a genius seemings though they are $4 a sticker..im the shopping mum (wish it was a bit more glmourous than grocery shopping lol), hubbys the bbq dad with the beer in hand and the beer belly lol we have son 1 on the skateboard son 2 holding the game control and son 3 with the finger up the nose!!

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  18. Hello Save Mum’s Sanity!

    Wow how refreshing to discover an intelligent Aussie woman making a statement to appeal to the masses! I have to say, I really love your post (and all the comments too!) I am the designer of the My Family range of car stickers… guilty as charged and I take on board the feedback for the need for some more appropriate mum characters! (We do have a suggest a character form on the website).

    I think it’s great how you question the stickers’ purpose. I think you’re right and it really is what we aspire to be (certainly in the case of my partner… he likes to put the weightlifting dad on hehehe – oops he’s going to read this). But if you can put yourself in my shoes for a moment… how difficult is it to create a truly personalised version of every fabulous woman in Australia? Of course it’s impossible and unfortunately a necessary evil (call that culling my creativity) when I am told that we cannot afford to produce 297 different mums! OK… so we have tried to develop the range in stages based on feedback.

    By the way Felicity, we haven’t drawn the rolling in dough one yet (but oh I’d like that!!!) – my accurate sticker would look more like frazzled, time poor mum who no longer goes to the gym regularly, with neglected children eating take away (again) promising to read Harry Potter for 30 mins after I finish this email!

    Anyway… we normally try to base our character designs around a ‘hobby’ or ‘sport’ rather than ‘career’. We’ve been asked for overweight characters and the closest we’ve got is our BBQ dad with a slight paunch 🙂 We have of course thought about producing a ‘cheeky’ range but basically most people tend to be drawn to displaying ‘good wholesome family values’ and I think that’s a part of it’s popularity. And unlike our counterparts overseas we Aussies choose to be a little private in NOT displaying our family name or children’s names underneath our stickers!

    Overall, I think when it all boils down to it, we all have a strong sense of family pride. We want to show off who is in our family. If our family consists of ourself and the cat then hooray! Let’s show it off! Families come in all shapes and sizes…

    Monica

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    • Hi Monica
      Thanks for popping in and sharing your story of designing the stickers! Great to hear where you are coming from and the inspiration behind the sticker range. I totally understand the impossibility of catering for the broad spectrum of mum’s out there – would be a hard task. Congratulations on the success of the stickers – when writing the post I was legitimately puzzled and now thanks to your feedback and other comments on the blog, I have come to understand the motivation of those displaying the stickers. Might have to submit my request for hairy legged, wild hair mumma! Cheers, Belinda

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  19. Just say no! Please don’t get one they are horrible. Who needs that labelling?? I’ve never seen any same sex partners, but I have seen lots of single mums. My daughter want’s to get 1 dad, 7 mums & 23 children, just to stir things up.

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  20. Omgosh! This post is TOO funny!
    I couldn’t agree more with your views on this epidemic!

    A very funny read 🙂

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  21. The best family stickers I have seen which may change your mind is at http://www.stickitfamily.com.au They have a better range to choose from, and are not so in your face, they are displayed neater and the lines are thinner, so if you subtely want to display your family you can. I have and I love them.

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  22. i’ve started looking at My Family stickers because i’m very proud to belong to my Girlfriend and i want to tell the world i do – despite the fact that the vast majority of the people who constitute “the world” to which i refer couldn’t care less. 🙂 for me (and probably for a lot of people) it’s a pride thing.

    now can anybody tell me where i’ll find a set of My Family stickers that offers a woman cracking a whip?

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  23. Any useful resource could be obtained through the use of the special on-line Clash of Clans hack we offer.

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