Mum sparks backlash by saying having real Christmas tree means you’re ‘middle class’
By now, many people will have decked the halls and put up their Christmas decorations, but when it comes to the tree, do you have a real or a fake one in your house?
This is the question many people have been answering online recently after one mum shared a rather controversial post on Mumsnet.
The unnamed parent took to the site to share a debate she’d been having at work about trees – she explained that her colleagues seemed to be “snobby” about the idea of an artificial tree.
This got the woman thinking about whether a real tree is a type of “status symbol” for the “middle class” and “wealthy”.
In her post on Mumsnet, she wrote: “Real tree vs fake tree? Is it a status symbol?
“Just putting up our artificial tree and having some thoughts.
“At work the other day we got to discussing Christmas trees, and the old real vs artificial debate. It seemed to me that there was a bit of ‘snobbery’ against those who had artificial trees (maybe that’s just where I work!).
“There were those who said artificial trees were just TERRIBLE for the environment. Given that most people I know have had their tree for many years (our family one was about 40 years old before it was replaced) is this really true?
“I have never had a real tree, growing up I didn’t know anyone who had a real tree and in our circles, it was usually only the slightly more well off people who ever had real trees. Apologies if this offends anyone, it was just my experience as a child growing up in working-class Scotland.”
She continued: “Some people at work looked horrified at the thought of having a ‘plastic’ tree (mind, they were going off to cut the perfect one down on their ‘estate’).
“So what do you think? Real Vs artificial? I spent a fair bit a few years ago to get a really nice realistic looking artificial tree which I hope will last years. At the time we had cats and I was afraid they would get hurt/never leave the real tree alone so I have stuck with artificial.
“What does everyone else have? Do you judge people with fake trees?”
Her post divided opinion with some saying they were working class and always had real trees and others agreed there is an element of snobbery.
One person replied: “Working class, always had a real tree.”
Another said: “Middle class always had a real tree. I think there is a lot of snobbery. I love the smell of a real tree.”
A third commented: “Solidly middle class family. Always always had and have a real tree. No tinsel, white lights, no single colour – miss mash of baubles collected over the years. I really don’t like the trend for ‘themed’ trees.”
Someone else wrote: “I think it’s a class thing, yes. Rude for people to sneer at your choice though.”
A different user proclaimed: “I wouldn’t give any thought to someone’s social or financial status in regards to what tree they have. Seems utterly bonkers.”.