- When Ashley Foret Smith emerged from the bathroom on May 5, she realised her daughter’s first grade class had seen her naked.
- Foret Smith was humiliated, and then realised that this was a moment to laugh and support parents during the pandemic.
- The mother of three posted a video recounting what happened, which has since collected more than 1.7 million views.
- “I hope that other parents learn…that we are all doing our best to balance so many things right now,” she said.
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On May 5, Ashley Foret Smith experienced every parent’s pandemic fear: accidentally appearing naked in front of her children’s classmates. She decided to share the embarrassing moment with the world to offer some levity during a difficult time.
The morning started like most other recent chaotic ones at the Jacksonville, Florida family’s home. Foret Smith got her three daughters up, ready, and settled in their various designated spots to start their virtual learning. Foret Smith, who works for an organisation that grants wishes to sick children, answered some emails and then took a moment for herself to shower.
When she emerged from the bathroom, she threw her hair up in her towel and suddenly heard unmistakable little giggles and voices in her room. “Uh, oh,” said a child, who wasn’t one of her daughters. “We should hang up. We might be in trouble.”
That’s when Foret Smith realised that her youngest child, who’s seven, had relocated from the home office to the master bedroom, where her computer was positioned just so that her entire first grade class on Zoom was able to see her mother naked.
When Foret Smith realised she had accidentally flashed her daughter’s Zoom class, she was mortified
Humiliated and panicked, Foret Smith didn’t know what to do.
“Parenting books teach you a lot of things,” Foret Smith told Insider. “How to change a diaper, how to handle the terrible 2s, how to potty train your toddler. But nowhere in these books is there a chapter on how to virtual school during a pandemic. How was I supposed to handle this?”
The mother of three conferred with two teacher friends who said that every educator who’s doing remote lessons right now has the same concern that this could happen to them.
They encouraged Foret Smith to share the story with the world to show that it’s possible to be mortified, and also laugh about it, especially at a time when parents are overwhelmed with managing work, homeschooling, and their fears around the coronavirus.
She posted a video about it to give parents a chance to laugh
Foret Smith recorded a lighthearted video – with a towel wrapped on her head – in which she recounted the embarrassing event, and then shared it to her Facebook page, where it has since collected more than 1.7 million views. In the comments, numerous parents shared that they, too, have accidentally flashed their children’s classes during a virtual learning session.
Foret Smith later shared photos to a “ZoomGate” album. She posted one image of her youngest daughter partaking in a virtual class while sitting in a box, and another photo of her dressed incognito, wearing glasses and a scarf on her head.
Foret Smith said she hopes the video, and the follow-up pictures, encourage parents to find the humour in difficult moments during the pandemic and to not put too much pressure on themselves.
“Practicing social distancing for so long makes you feel like you are in this all alone. When in fact, every single one of us is learning this new way of life,” Foret Smith told Insider. “I hope that other parents learn that it is OK to not be perfect – that we are all doing our best to balance so many things right now.”
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