Viral Dad Explains Why He Trolled Bad-Grade-Having Son With Sign


A St. Louis dad, who only wants to be known as “Tommy,” went viral recently after trolling his son at an NBA game and letting the world know the son wasn’t there because his grades weren’t up to par. Tommy and his 12-year-old son, Thomas, routinely attended the games together, but after Thomas transitioned from public to private school, his grades dropped.


“Thomas get your grades back up and next time you’ll be here. Love, Dad,” read the sign that made its first appearance at a Cleveland Cavaliers game.


Many people praised Tommy for his tough parenting, but Thomas didn’t bother answering his dad’s call when his father wanted to see if he had gotten news of the viral sign. I mean, can you blame him? It’s a little embarrassing for a kid.

And yes, there was a second sign appearance.

Tommy took another sign to Houston to attend the Houston Rockets-Oklahoma City Thunder game. And this one was even more in-your-face, mentioning the fact that his son didn’t answer his call.

“Thomas can you hear me now? STUDENT then ATHLETE son. In that order. Love, dad.”


Well, there’s a method to Tommy’s madness. And he just wants his son to do better.

“This report card didn’t show me that there was a lack of understanding or intelligence,” Tommy told CBS News. “It was a lack of effort being put forth by my son. It’s not that he didn’t get it—he didn’t do his best.


“We live in a society where people are having to hide their troubles, and it’s causing all types of problems. ... I’m trying to teach my son and all of my kids that it’s OK not to be OK,” Tommy said. “It’s normal to have problems.”

Apparently, Thomas learned the lesson and has promised his dad that he’ll do better. Once he does that, Tommy said, they’ll once again attend games together.


Thank God we didn’t have social media and unlimited data/internet when I was a kid.

Bye, Kinja! It's been fun (occasionally).

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It is normal to have problems, but broadcasting your kid’s failure in front of the world to see is becoming normal and I hate that.

I’m not into performance parenting at all, but at least this Dad was aggressively shaming him and beating him on camera to prove that he really loves his son and wants the best for him.