They say it takes a village to raise a child, feels more like you need the world. Child rearing is one of the most rewarding yet difficult journeys in life. It's amazing parents male it through.
Redditor u/CatoPUA wanted the parents out there to discuss a few fun facts by asking.... Parents of Reddit, what were you not prepared for when raising a child?
It's not Me!Giphy
How much and how quickly they become their own unique person, both like and totally unlike their parents. You think you're going to be raising a version of yourself but, nope! You have to figure out how to parent someone totally new. EleanorWasRight
Just how fast they hit puberty. I was a teenager when it started with me, my kids were both 10. elgiesmelgie
And how damn early they learn about sex and all sorts of things, mostly misinformation from their friends too 😑 You go to have "the talk" with them and they're like yeah yeah we already know this, and you're like what?! WreakingHavoc640
Babies are hairy when they are first born. My beautiful daughter came out and looked like donkey Kong the first day. I was like uhhh dang she's gonna have a hard time in high school. crackerjeffbox
Seriously. I thought my little boy looked like a gorilla. He had a full head of hair along with hairy ears and back. This, coupled with the fact that there was goo smooshed in his hair that we couldn't wash for two days, meant that he definitely wasn't as cute as he could've been. Goddess182
The anxiety that comes from the thought of saying or doing the wrong thing. You are going to be most of the reason they are the way they are when they're older. They totally depend on you to help them through everything and they don't even know it. I am pretty much constantly afraid that I'm handling things poorly, that I could be doing better for my kid but don't know how. It's rough sometimes. breadbirdbard
So many legs....Giphy
You can have twins without a family history. I have identical twin girls, the ultrasound showed one. I brought up to the doctor that I feel two babies kicking before he said "that's because it has two legs." In delivery when I heard "there's another one" I wasn't actually in much shock. samatha1995
I Gots to pee...
The urgency of everything. I need to pee means "I felt the urge 20+ minutes ago but was busy playing now I'm about to pee my pants." I'm hungry means "my mood and behavior has progressively gotten worse for the last hour and you haven't noticed.
"If you don't feed me now I'm going full exorcist." I need help with homework means "I got an assignment months ago but I didn't want to do it it's half my grade and is due tomorrow." Everything is urgent because children are the worst procrastinators in the world. brettwvcut
My baby was born, then about a week later was teething, then a week later was sitting up and crawling, then a week later was cruising, and now she is trying to stand and take her first steps.
It has actually been 9 months, but I swear to God it has only been these few couple weeks. Time just flies by so fast. If I didn't have video to prove that I was cuddling a little scrunch-faced potato all those months ago I would have sworn on my life she hadn't grown almost at all, but she is nearly triple the size! Reddit
The anxiety that came with him going to school. He's been bullied, doesn't have many male friends, isn't very athletic, etc.
I take comfort in the fact that he does have good friends, he's passionate about being a school librarian, in the media team and being a part of the orchestra. He's starting to be more confident and he stays out of trouble. But God, it hurts so much when he's sad or upset or gets anxious in social situations. TITLE_OF_YO_SEXTAPE
Who are you?
I'm gonna be honest here. I'm a single dad and only have the one. I got lucky. Super lucky. My 5 year old is a damn rock star. From 6 months on he slept his nights through, never cried, eats everything, bed time is a breeze every single night. It's almost like he's too perfect to be real.
That's 99% of the time.
There are the very rare days where it's almost like a switch flips and he just has the worst day. These are incredibly rare though and getting rarer. Usually it comes after a poor night's sleep.
I guess for me personally the biggest thing I wasn't ready for was the sudden and polarizing change. Times I want to ask myself: "Who is this kid?" Theearthhasnoedges
The Hard Days.Giphy
How much time and energy I'd have to put in to keep them from killing themselves.
Two teens — aged 14 and 18. Anxiety, depression, panic attacks, medications, therapists, hospitalizations, two suicide attempts. Trying to help them with this has been a huge part of our lives In the last 2 years.
I think we have a pretty "normal" happy household — husband and I happily married for 21 years, middle class, lots of love and laughter and support in our house. Yet our children are really struggling. 😰
It's hard being a teen now. I have fun memories of being in high school and I wanted that same experience for them. It was a real surprise to realize how dark things are for them. I was prepared for sleepless nights and terrible twos and all that. No one prepared me for this. SegoLil
We didn't even have the nursery set up yet when my oldest was born. My husband was working like crazy to get extra hours so he could take 2 weeks off for the birth, and my parents were planning on coming out the next week to help set up the nursery and everything.
Then I went into labor 6 weeks early and had to have an emergency c-section.
Also, the projectile poop. I was definitely not expecting the violent, shoot all the way across the room and splat the wall like a power washer projectile poop that newborns have. Squirrelgirl25
The purpose of your life becomes very simple yet endlessly stressful. I think what shocked me was how my job became accidental suicide watch 24/7. Not a joke. Children don't know anything and have very little comprehension of danger or risk.
Even after falling 100 times and hitting their heads on things that are very obviously in their way also 100 times, they continue essentially the same behavior, which is to be somewhat oblivious to their surroundings. Now daycare, where in my first week, the "teacher" covering from the actual daycare staff was found passed out on the ground next to my daughter, who was soaked in pee crying because she was embarrassed about trying to go potty (never has accidents), and when my ex woke her up (it was nap time), she BLAMED my daughter.
I'm surprised that woman is still alive after she said that to her mother only the 3rd day of daycare. Anyway, now I have to worry about other people who care a lot less about her to take care of her. It's lovely... airman842
I was prepared for everything. I read baby and parenting books non stop for 9 months. I've had insomnia my whole life so not sleeping wasn't gonna be an issue. I wasn't prepared for the traumatic birth. He got stuck on my wife's pelvis and they nearly had to do an emergency bed side c section, but they got him out.
My wife was pouring blood, he was barely moving, the whole room was chaos with nurses and doctors everywhere. He was having trouble breathing and they kept him in the nursery overnight to monitor him. He had nerve damage in his right arm from being stuck and he could barely move it at first. It was a rough experience.
Then 2 weeks later we find 2 small blisters on him. Take him to the DR and they run a test and find out he has hsv-1. Most people have it by adulthood but it can be fatal to babies so we had to rush back to the hospital where he spent 3 weeks in the nicu getting treated. Wasn't prepared for that either. iiitsbacon
How many fights I would have to put up with from adults. All these people who know what's best for you and your kid, willing to go to crazy over it. NANDINIA5
Toddler diarrhea- this is when your toddler has diarrhea, and you've been to the pediatrician multiple times, and they've been tested for all the food allergies, and you've had to take a stool sample to get checked for all kinds of parasites that could possibly be causing it, only to have everything come back negative and have the pediatrician tell you that some toddlers get massive diarrhea for MONTHS and there's no explanation and here's some prescription burn cream to use instead of regular diaper cream because the rash really is that bad even though the diaper is changed far more often than average.
Someone told me, when I was pregnant, that having a child is "like having your heart walking around outside your body," and it really is true. I fear bad things happening to him far more than I fear bad things happening to me. KLWK
Learning my child has a number of disabilities and the difficulty in getting them diagnosed in the first place. bonkette
Chronic lack of sleep. My brain function plummeted for the first couple years with each kid. I was brain-foggy and volatile. It felt like I was sacrificing things that I didn't know I could sacrifice when I signed up for this, and it took a long time to adapt. I would absolutely do it all again but it was hard. Threeormorepeople
Needing a Recharge....
That they would be different from me. I think often when we have kids we think about all of our traits (by default the more positive ones) - and think about how our kids will be this and this, just like us.
My son is the total opposite of me. An introvert raising an active, extroverted, loud, all eyes on me - let's be seen son, with ADHD.
I recharge by quite moments and isolation while he needs to practically sit in my lap. It has been challenging because our needs are so different, and he is still too young to understand why.
This is a type of growing pain I didn't quite expect but I am learning to appreciate the journey. It will make both of us more empathetic and understanding people in the long run. dearDem
Being a Protector!!!
When the first old lecherous pervert ogled my 12 year old daughter and grunted in approval. I've never felt my blood boil more than that moment. Shadybeach
When I had my 1st baby, i was completely unprepared for the loss of autonomy. It's something no one told me about or mentioned in anyway. The feeling is profound and I grieved over it. You go from being your own person physically and mentally, but after a baby you're physically and mentally tied to the most needy and helpless of creatures.
Things like running to the grocery store aren't simple anymore. It gets easier the older they get, but I'm guessing it never truly goes away, because even when they move out I'll still worry about them. mr-the-cat
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/