Top Stories

Parents Share Their Biggest Regrets On How They Raised Their Children

Parents Share Their Biggest Regrets On How They Raised Their Children

Being a parent is a daunting task and even the best parents will screw up their children in some way. Other people know they weren't the best or most attentive parents and come to regret their actions upon reflection years later.

After Redditor Speaker-of-the-Void asked the online community, "Mothers/Fathers of now adult children, what is your greatest regret about how you raised them?" people shared their stories in candid detail.

"My ex's dad..."

My ex's dad once told me he regretted moving overseas during his son's childhood in order to "provide" for the family (I put that in quotes because we live in Australia - he wanted to make $500k/year instead of the $100k he could make here). Sure, they owned their house, but my ex never saw his dad regularly. His parents divorced when he was in high school, so his dad never came back to the family home (he did move back to Australia) and my ex never felt like he knew him very well, although he looked up to him and loved him so much.

2 years before his dad died, my ex himself moved overseas in pursuit of a "better life" (read: a higher paying job), so in the last couple of years they saw each other maybe once or twice. His dad said that was his influence - that he had basically taught his son that making money was more of a priority than spending time with your loved ones.

I don't think my ex will ever get over losing his dad multiple times in his life - or getting to know him better while he was alive.


"There not only would have been..."

I regret reprimanding my kids because of embarrassment I felt, rather than their behavior being cause for reprimanding. There not only would have been less unnecessary reprimanding and punishment, but I would have been a better parent for worrying about what actually needed to be worried about. Parents shouldn't make it about themselves, and I did for a long time...


"We have an amazing young adult daughter..."

We have an amazing young adult daughter but we're slobs and so is she. My parents aren't like that and my in-laws aren't either so I don't know why we're the way we are, but I know we'd all be happier if we just kept clean and tidy homes.


"I wish I had insisted..."

I wish I had insisted on better behavior when they were adolescents and teens.

I was an only child. My wife had lots of experience caring for younger kids--so much so that I tended to go along with her strategies even when the kids got older. We were too accepting of negative, rebellious, and destructive behavior, and both kids were less successful in school and socially than they could have been.


"They have character flaws..."

I don't have much in the way of regrets apart from missing big chunks of time with them due to my work. At 22 and 20 they are great young adults and I am proud of them and what they do. They have character flaws and have made mistakes like anyone else and when they do I think what I may have done in raising them that could have caused it. But I think that's just parental guilt, they are their own people and can make their own wrong calls from time to time.


"They all turned out fine..."

I wish I had left work earlier more often. They all turned out fine, and we have good relationships. But they grow up fast, and you miss a lot of good times if you're too focused on being the provider.


"This was back when..."

Before he passed, my late stepfather confessed to me that he never would have pushed me so hard about my education at a young age. This was back when "Tiger Mom" parenting was all the rage in the early 90s. There were a lot of days where every waking minute was devoted to math and writing drills, maybe I'd get some time playing Math Blaster or Jumpstart on the PC if I was lucky. Going to the doctor? Leave the game boy at home, you're taking a book to the waiting room.

I was the start student as school, even got into advanced classes, up until halfway through 4th grade when my mental state began to deteriorate and my lack of social development became apparent. My teenage years were spent going through a massive downward spiral, became violent with both other students and my parents, dropped out in 9th grade. Tried several times to get my GED but when I try to study for it I just... can't handle it. I've spent my entire adult life being a shut-in.

My stepfather was always a very stubborn, arrogant man, especially in those last few years, so to hear him talk about how he raised me with genuine regret in his voice... I'll never forget that moment.


"Given how smart and patient..."

My mother says her biggest regret is not homeschooling me. Given how smart and patient she is, and how patchy and inconsistent my schooling was due to frequently moving, she's probably right that I'd have been better off.


"We went to church every Sunday..."

I raised my children with religion. We went to church every Sunday and most Wednesdays. My job for a few years was through the church, and most of our friends were through the church, too.

About the time my youngest started college, I became an atheist.

They no longer talk to me, don't respond to my messages, and have become more and more involved in a very strict church that they found.

I was trying to raise them with love, caring, and empathy, but it turns out I raised them to be overly judgemental.


"Financially it made sense..."

Too much work, not enough time home with the kids especially when they were young.

Financially it made sense and my wife was able to be a full-time mom as she preferred. She also insisted I spend time with the kids, when I might have been inclined to spend more time on work; brought the kids to have dinner with me at my employer's cafeteria; etc.

Now we care for our granddaughter several days a week and I see how much I missed with our kids. Our kids are fine - successful, independent adults so no harm there, just my regrets.


"My child does things..."

My child does things which are not allowed in our religion. I should have been observant.


"I wish we would have..."

I wish we would have put her in daycare. By kindergarten she was so overly attached to me from being home with me 24/7 that the school enforced a "no parents inside" rule because she would lose her mind in the hallway when I tried leaving her. Plus I would be a hell of a lot further along in my career.


"I was a mother of three..."

I have always regretted not having more patience with my kids. I was a mother of three with a deadbeat husband and working fulltime to provide for the five of us. It caused a lot of hardship and stress. What i wish i would have realized sooner is that it was not their fault in any way. I had no right to take it out on them by not gving the time they deserved with things. I really wish I would have spent more time listening and being present in the moments we had.


"When I was a young dumb parent..."

When I was a young dumb parent with our first child, I just knew I was going to be a lot better parent than my dad was. Which really didn't take much. But anyway, I know I was much too strict. And I said some things in ways I shouldn't have said them. And I said some things I should not have said at all. And it has caused my oldest son to be very distant, and have some animosity toward me that, while understandable, I certainly never wanted. Remember, while you can apologize to your kids, you still can never take it back. Make sure what you say is said the right way and for the right reason. It all matters.


"We did teach them..."

We, my wife and I, did not teach our children enough household skills. Things like cooking, laundry, basic carpentry and home maintenance and repairs. We just always did those things ourselves and let our kids go play, they are now adults and can't do these things for themselves. We did teach them about the financial aspect of having their own home and basic auto maintenance like changing a flat tire and checking the oil.


"I didn't follow through..."

I didn't follow through on the orders I gave them. They have little discipline.

I didn't have them get summer jobs in high school; they have no work record or work experience.


"They are so worth it."

I was an alcoholic for her entire upbringing. I was never mean or abusive and physically I was always there, but mentally I was never fully present.

We have a great relationship, and she remembers her childhood fondly with no ill feelings...but I know I short changed her and it breaks my heart.

If you struggle with substance abuse please get help. They are so worth it.


"I wish that instead of..."

I wish that instead of doing things for him myself because it was easier/quicker for me, I had taken the time to oversee and emphasize the importance of letting him do it himself. I'm talking chores around the house. My 21 year old now lives in the basement apartment. I quit doing things for him when he turned 18. But it's disgusting and living like that can't be helping his morale. I wish I'd taught him better to look after himself. His future wife would also thank me.


"To be honest..."

To be honest I wish I had spent more time with them as they were growing up.once they both started school coincided with me going to work full time. I honestly can't remember them growing up and now they are adults.i spent my time coming home cleaning and cooking rather than going things with them as money was tight at first.


Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'

Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.

Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.

For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.

I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.

My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.

Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

"Give an example; how weird are you really?"

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."

– Practical_Eye_3600

"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."

– bikergirlr7

"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."

– KingBooRadley


"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."

– AquamarineCheetah

"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."

"Makes me think my "memory is full.""

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."

– OhhGoood

"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."

– Frostygrunt


"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."

– RandomSharinganUser

"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."

– Kolkeia

If Only

"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."

– drummerskillit

"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."

– Isitjustmedownhere

"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."

"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."

"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."

"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."

– We-R-Doomed

"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

"I can hear the television while it's on mute."

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."

"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."

– LesPaltaX

"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."

– MoonlightKayla

I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!

Close up face of a woman in bed, staring into the camera
Photo by Jen Theodore

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?

But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.

It would be so great to be sure there is something else.

But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.

Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:

"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."



"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."

"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."

"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."


Take Me Back

"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."

"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."



"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."

"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”



"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"


"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"


The Fog

"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."

"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."


Through the Walls

"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.

The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.

Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.

Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:

"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."

– r7ndom

"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."

– dee-fondy

"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"

"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”

"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."

– KatMagic1977

"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


"I can buy clothes in any store I want."

– WaySavvyD

"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"

– LiZZygsu

"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"

"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."

– Princess-Pancake-97

"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."

– snic2030

"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."

"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."

– dma1965

People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.

But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.

That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.