FFS affects each person differently and at different levels of exposure to family togetherness. Symptoms of FFS include:
- Locking yourself in the bathroom and telling those inevitably calling to you from the other side that you have a sudden and wicked intestinal virus and you can't possibly leave the bathroom for the next two hours.
- Inability to make gentle suggestions such as "could you please unload the dishwasher." Rather, what comes out of your mouth is "You have 5 minutes to unload the dishwasher or else you will never play video games again for the rest of your life."
- Poor decision-making skills, marked by manic thoughts of slipping down your icy street in your pajamas, screaming "Please don't make me go back there!"
- Acts of borderline child neglect such as locking the doors while the kids are outside playing in the snow, then going to watch a movie with the volume turned up REALLY loud.
- Distorted interpretations of Carol Brady. Instead of baking cookies for your loving offspring, you throw a roll of slice-and-bake cookie dough on the table and tell them to fend for themselves.
- Intermittent periods of catatonia during which your family says you have a strange glazed look and a frightful smile while muttering "Hi Boss! So good to see you again."
- Displays of desperation for animal care. This might show itself in ways such as throwing open the door, running to the middle of the back yard, disrobing from the waist down, squatting and going #2 while yelling, "See dog? It IS possible to poop in the back yard during a snowstorm!"
If you have any of the above symptoms, please for the love of all sanity, get out of the house RIGHT NOW. Go to a childless neighbor's house. Slip and slide your way to the grocery store. Sit in the car with a bottle of wine and Facebook on your phone. Save yourself. Do it now!