12 Ways Parents Mess Up Their Kids Without Meaning To

Written By Shivani Bohare

As parents, the small actions we make today can shape our kids’ tomorrows. Reddit users have some insights on avoiding seemingly harmless yet damaging practices that could impact your child’s future. And guess what? Some of these habits are more common than you might expect!

12. Not Explaining Themselves

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“The whole ‘do as I say because I said so’ or ‘because I had you’ is not effective.”

“Yes! Rules should always have valid rationales behind them. Ones that you can explain fully. “Your room must be clean: building habits and routines makes life way easier and keeping a clean house can help reduce the chance of injury from tripping or pests”. “Bedtime is 8: sleep is very important for our health. If we dont get enough, we het cranky and dont function as well”. Yadda yadda. Adjust for age.”

11. Filling Every Minute With Activities

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“Don’t get me wrong, some extra curricular activities are good, but when your kids never have an unaccounted for minute I think it has a negative impact.”

“Yes! I’m a preschool teacher and student burn out is very real. Although my students are young, some of them go from school, to dance/gymnastics/sports practice immediately after school and then repeat the whole thing the next day. I had a student tell me that she was so exhausted from constantly moving from one activity to the next, that she just wanted a break. The parents were over scheduling her to the max, and it was starting to heavily impact her behavior and attention span at school.”

10. Never Teaching Them to Say ‘No’

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“This is society as a general. You need to have boundaries. It’s okay to say no.”

“I used to work at a school for a short period, and I was pulled aside, and my supervisor told me that we weren’t allowed to tell the kids no or they couldn’t do something.”

9. Not Respecting Kids’ Privacy

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“This one hit home; my parents used to have an open door policy whenever I’d do something bad; it only “taught” me that privacy can be taken away, not a right. It screwed with me badly.”

“My father used to say, “You don’t deserve privacy until you are 18,” and then proceeded to yell at us if we didn’t close the door when we talked.”

8. Not Discussing the Value of Money

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“I’m not saying parents should dump their financial stress on their kids, but things like budgeting, taxes, and personal finance discussions would’ve helped me tremendously.”

“My parents assumed making me hand over a percentage of my part-time teenage jobs would instill some sort of wisdom about money. It didn’t. Everything I learned about how to use money I had to learn the hard way in my 20s.”

7. Not Teaching Them to Cook

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“I mean, my parents taught me to cook but emphasized “clean as you go” and “if you don’t have time to clean, you don’t have time to cook.”

“I encouraged my son to get involved in the kitchen from a young age. Once, he put a Mac N Cheese cup in the microwave with no water. He almost burned the house down, lol.”

6. Not Allowing Kids to Fail

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“They fail at letting their kids fail and figure out how to recover. It prevents the kids from becoming resilient.”

“My son once procrastinated until a major project was due the next day, and he hadn’t even started it. I helped for a bit, then went to bed. I left him to it, thinking it would teach him a lesson. Well, it did, just not the one I wanted. Little **** got an A and then gloated about how great he was for finishing it last minute. He said the other kids were losers for wasting time. He was 9. I’m still mad at that teacher.”

5. Comparing Their Kids With Other Kids

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“That other kid got an A, why can’t you?” That doesn’t motivate me to do better; it just makes me hate the other kid.”

“When the comparison is between siblings rather than other people’s kids, it’s even worse.”

“My dad did this to my brother and me throughout our childhood.”

4. Being Overprotective

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“I think some parents confuse “trauma” with “adversity.” Trauma can lead to long-lasting emotional, social, mental, and physical issues. Consequently, trauma should be avoided at all costs. However, adversity can lead to personal growth, perseverance, and confidence building. Parents need to be able to distinguish one from the other.”

“You can’t protect your kids 24/7 for their whole lives. It leads to naive adults that get taken advantage of.”

3. Too Much or Not Enough Discipline

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“Disciplining too much hits hard. I know many kids with strict parents who became druggies the second they left for college. Nobody taught them to have self-agency because their independence never existed until they left their homes.”

“I always think of that episode of The Simpsons where they show Ned Flanders as a child. His parents were so messed up. “We’ve tried nothing and are all out of ideas!”

2. Expecting Kids to Act as Adults

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“I was expected to act like an adult but tolerate being treated like a child. I was fine with the first expectation, but the second still ****** me off.”

“Drove me nuts when my mom did that. She’d scream ‘act your age’ at the top of your lungs, and in my head, I’d say, ‘I’m 12. If I acted my age, we would BOTH be screaming right now. YOU act your age!'”

1. Not Apologizing When They’re Wrong

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“I’m right, you’re wrong. I’m big, you’re small, and there’s nothing you can do about it.”

“I didn’t realize how profound this is until I had kids. I say I’m sorry a lot. I also often admit to not knowing everything. Like we’re straight up figuring this **** out together, and I’m not going to be perfect.”

“My father did this a lot; he would never admit he was wrong, and even if he were, he’d still say something along the lines of “I’m the adult here. You don’t know anything because you’re just a kid.”


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Source: Reddit.

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