WASHINGTON— A shocking study released this week from the Institute of Board Game Familial Dynamics (IBGFD) has shown that the classic board game Monopoly is the leading cause of familial discord, surpassing even discussing politics at Thanksgiving or disagreeing on which Netflix series to binge next.
"Our findings were undeniable," stated lead researcher Dr. Anita Boardgame. "Families would sit down for a fun evening of bonding over property trading, only to end the night with a flaming Uncle Pennybags effigy and vows to never speak again."
Tales of Monopoly-induced despair are widespread. Sarah Thompson, a mother of three from Iowa, recalled the horror of the last family game night: "It began innocently enough. Timmy got the railroads, and Julie built hotels on the yellows. But when Aunt Doris implemented a 'creative' rent strategy for landing on Free Parking, the game board flew, and our dog ran off with the paper money. We haven’t seen him since."
In an attempt to uncover the game's dark underbelly, our team went undercover at the annual Monopoly World Championship. The competition was intense, with whispers of secret deals and alleged thimble doping scandals. One participant, who chose to remain anonymous, stated, "I’ve seen things… friends turned to foes, children trading their parent's love for a shot at the big orange properties. It’s madness."
Hasbro, the company behind Monopoly, issued a statement in light of the findings: "We always intended for Monopoly to be a light-hearted simulation of the cutthroat world of real estate. But we understand that for some, the allure of being a pretend tycoon and bankrupting Grandma can be overwhelming."
In response to the epidemic, many families have sworn off the game entirely, turning instead to gentler pursuits such as Uno or Scrabble. Still, many experts believe that the real solution lies in education.
"Parents need to sit their children down and explain that in the real world, you can't go to jail just for landing on the wrong square," said Dr. Boardgame. "Nor can you magically erect a hotel overnight after buying four houses. If families can understand this, perhaps there's hope."
At press time, the IBGFD was also investigating reports of families torn apart by disputes over the rules of the card game "Go Fish".