A video has gone viral of Paula Papen (pictured) tricking her 8-year-old son into thinking he bought a $50,000 Mustang on eBay while using her iPad. Papen’s joke instantly sends her son, Kenyon, to tears.

In the aftermath of the video, which has over 340,000 views, Papen and Kenyon visited the TODAY show, where they explained how the Papen family came down with the flu over Christmas and found themselves stuck in the house together. Kenyon and Papen’s husband were planning on buying a cheap car to fix-up together, which explains why Kenyon was on eBay looking for cars. While Papen has been criticized for the prank and been accused of creating trust issues in her son, Papen maintained that she felt fine with the video and believed it helped instill a sense of humor in Kenyon.

“I think I caught more flack for a vertical video than even my parenting, but you kind of just have to let it roll off your back,” Papen told TODAY. “I think, honestly, teaching your kids to have a sense of humor is pretty important, and teaching them to take a joke is a good deal, too.’’


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“I was like, ‘Oh, that was just a funny little prank,’’’ Kenyon added after the fact. “I wasn’t worried.’’

Parents pranking children has become a popular YouTube hit, in particular with Jimmy Kimmel of Jimmy Kimmel Live, who in the past has challenged parents to send in videos of them telling their children they ate all of their Halloween candy. The video below has over 38 million views.

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