Not everyone is meant to be a parent. The societal pressure to have kids is something that leads a lot of people to reproduce, whether or not they like it. It may seem impossible to some to full-on regret having kids, but these Redditors do. Here are there stories.
u/Lemonlemongo asked: Parents who regretted having kids, what do you wish you had known before?
Lots of good advice.
I regret not doing/knowing the following before I had kids:
1.) Travel, a lot. Everywhere, the farther the better. Spend your money on it, use your time.
2.) Don't brush off school districts and schools when you buy a house, it may not matter now but it may be the things that changes your entire world in a few years, don't be selfish because it's a great price and you love the location now, but the schools are sh! t, Don't. Don't do that. You will be in a bad place later.
3.) Make sure your spouse will really, truly, co-parent with you. My cousins husband would change her sons diapers but not their daughters because "ew, that's weird" ... Figure it out before you're like 10 years into marriage and decide it's the right time.
4.) Consider your family dynamic - maybe you're just fine on your own with little help as an adult, but when you have kids, you need a village more than you'd like. Working with kids that constantly get sent home sick and need to go to the doctor, special half days at school and long school breaks. If it is just up to you and your spouse to take time away for all of that, you better have an understanding job that provides ample time and/or very close family and friends that are willing to take kids, pick them up, do overnights, the whole deal. My parents are in florida half the year and my in laws work full time. It's way more tough than I thought. I constantly feel like I'm going to get fired because I'm taking another unexpected day off because my kid can't go to daycare because they're sick.
5.) If you really want to have kids you better consider the fact that even though you feel pretty rich as a single person, or a maybe a two income household, that your area better have good, affordable daycare, or you or your spouse better be planning to stay home, in order to afford a kid or more. I know lots of people who make good money who were shocked to figure out that basically they can only afford to have one kid because the cost of childcare or the cost of staying home was so great that they could barely afford it. I live in a place where daycare is very affordable, I have three kids and we pay over $30,000 a year for daycare, and that's just the tuition. This is not your parents time - it's different out there now.
6.) This one got me the most - how independent/selfish/lazy are you... really. I'm what I considered to be a relatively well adjusted only child. I'm used to my space, my own time, being independent. I'm also pretty lazy. When I come home on a weekday, I like to rest, watch a lot of tv, hang out. When I had kids, it was a HUGE change. Someone needs you all the damn time, it is UNRELENTING. You never have your own anything anymore. You spend almost all of your waking time that your children are there tending to your childrens' needs. You beat yourself up for not being good enough at it, for being pissed about how miserable it is sometimes. For hating it. You will hate it sometimes. You need to very very very seriously consider your stamina for caring for others and putting everyone else before yourself. All the time.
Don't make these jokes.Giphy
My mother made it clear to my sister and I that she hadn't wanted us, that I was the product of my dad's unrelenting badgering and that my sister had been an ooops. She wasn't a good mom, at all. She screamed about everything, you never knew what would set her off, my parents divorced and we went on to be raised by my stepmom (not without her faults but she's a saint)- this woman didn't technically want us either, she hadn't chosen to get pregnant with us but she treated us just like her own. She planned (and paid for, with my dad) my wedding.
Things got better and my real mom is a good grandma now but let me tell you- hearing you're not wanted as a child, even in passing, even "as a joke" can shape someone's entire life and self worth. If this is you parents, don't you dare ever say it where they can hear you.
That's a messed-up family.
I always knew from a young age that I didn't want children. My family is all very strict Catholic Hispanics and basically picked who I was going to marry from a young age. Fortunately I liked the guy so we did end up married at 19.
I was very honest about not wanting kids. He was okay with that. Our families were not. I ended up pregnant even though I was taking birth control (more on that in a minute). Didn't noticed the missed periods because the type of birth control I took let you skip periods.
By the time I knew I was pregnant I was 5 months along which is too late for an abortion.
Had the baby, found out while in the hospital I ended up pregnant because our families ordered fake birth control online and replaced my pills with the fakes.
Needless to say my husband and I were pissed. I also had horrific postpartum depression but did the best I could. My husband took up drinking heavily to deal with the stress and one day he just never came home. Haven't heard from him since.
The baby was still an infant at that point (4 months) and I made the decision to put her up for adoption and move away.
Everyone says it's different when it's your own kid. Everyone says the first time you hold your baby you have an instant bond. Everyone says it's the most amazing/important thing a woman will ever do. None of that was true for me.
I'm in my mid 30s now and my daughter and her family made contact with me about 7 years ago. We talk regularly and I go visit for her birthday and some holidays. She knows the whole story and while I'm sure she doesn't really understand (she's only 13) she at least gets it a little.
If you know you don't want children, and have never wanted children, don't listen to people who tell you that you're wrong and will change your mind.
I'm trying to get my tubes tied to make sure it never happens again but haven't had luck finding a doctor whose willing to since I'm unmarried and under 40. Filled for divorce years ago and since nobody could find him it went through the same way it does for a missing person. We really need to stop acting like women don't understand their own bodies and wants.
It can ruin relationships.
This f*cking dilemma destroyed my relationship with what I considered to be "the one", she wanted kids, I didn't. I decided to break up with her. It's better than regretting having kids, but the last time I felt genuinely happy was 3 years ago and that also sucks a lot.
A good point.Giphy
Don't have kids when you struggle with mental illness.
I upvoted this, because my depression is one of the main reasons I choose to not have them. I don't think I can handle the stress while going through non functioning times nor would I want them to inherit the gene.
Maturity is everything.
My only regret about having kids is that I wasn't mature enough to handle that type of responsibility.
When my first came, I was determined that I can handle whatever comes our way, I was wrong, I was selfish and stressed my wife out a lot. I didn't want to spend any time with anyone else besides myself and became an alcoholic. I was really sad all the time, and was feeling a lot of negative emotions about my social group, my plans for the future, everything seemed to be out of reach. My wife and I argued a lot, but always worked things out for the sake that neither of us wanted our children in a separated family.
When the second one came, I had stopped drinking as much, and spent a lot of time working and saving money. I missed a lot of the milestones for both my children. It made me feel like I was alone and I felt like a terrible father, and felt a distance growing in my relationship with my wife. At some points I deeply resented the 3 of them, and I thought about leaving on more than one occasion for various situations we were in.
I eventually hit a point where I felt my soul being crushed, and I figured, "it's fine, whatever, I can be miserable as long as they're happy". And I stayed that way for a good 2 years.
Gradually I started to bond with my kids again, and just stuck around for them. Then I started bonding with my wife again. Now our family is functioning on all fronts.
It took 6 years for me to grow up and become a better father and husband...I regret that it took so long, and feel ashamed of how I screwed up at the beginning.
My first doesn't like me as much as my second, and my relationship with my wife is nothing like it was before having kids.
I wish I had known how kids not only change your perspective, they also change your future, and the relationships you have with others. If you try to fight it, you will lose in one way or another. Selfishness is a quality which only makes parenting harder than it has to be.
For anyone now childless and is on the fence about having kids... if you have doubts, having kids is not for you.
I have 3 kids. I've always wanted kids. I love my kids dearly and wouldn't change a thing... but they are a F*CK TON of work and as exhausting as you could ever imagine.
Parenting sucks the life out of you.. but it's also amazing and rewarding. IMO, you should only have them if you know for certain that you really, really want them.
This happens a lot.Giphy
I don't regret having them, but I'm not as great at being a mum as I thought I would be. My kids are still every bit as huge arseholes as all other kids. And I do all the lazy bad parenting things I swore I wouldn't do.
I think I just wished I had been more realistic so I didn't feel like such a let down.
The identity crisis is real.
Everything about babies and children and pregnancy. Last time I was near an infant I was 5 years old and it was my baby brother.
Also, other women don't warn you. The whole time I was pregnant they would just congratulate me and tell me how excited, happy, and fulfilled I must be.
Parenthood sucks. There's no you anymore, only mommy or daddy. You have a identity crisis because you literally lose yourself in taking care of the child and responsibilities. Three years later I'm still struggling with post partum depression, it's not like how they explain it on the internet. "Give it time for the hormones to regulate". No.
I feel awful saying I regret my kids. They're here and teens now. It's pure selfishness on my part. Now that they're nearly 17 and 15, I find myself super scared about their safety and future and the stress is hard on me. I worry about them driving, I worry about them dating, going off to college, living independently, etc. I just don't want them to be in danger or get hurt and the worry is weighing heavily on me.
There's no shortage of excellent horror fiction out there. Recently I read The Terror by Dan Simmons and can't remember the last time I felt that claustrophobic and nervous. But I am also a fan of quite a few classics. Are there any other horror books that capture grief as effectively as Stephen King's Pet Sematary? What other book evokes folk horror as beautifully as Thomas Tryon's Harvest Home? Let's not forget this wonderful classic: The Haunting of Hill House. I could rave about that one (and Shirley Jackson) for days. All of these books left their mark on me and yes, I'd include them on a list (if I were to make one) of some of the scariest books I've read.
People had their own opinions to share––and books to recommend––after Redditor Tylerisdumber asked the online community,
"What's the scariest book you've ever read?"
"Gerald's Game. I've read lots of Stephen King and this one scared me the most. Slept with the lights on for several nights."
Everything about this book is creepy. Don't even get me started on the... degloving. I'm sorry I even typed that word out.
"It's not a long story..."
"The Yellow Wallpaper.
It's not a long story and I'd highly recommend going in knowing little to nothing about it. It's brilliant and terrifying. Published in 1892 as well if that's any interest!"
Few stories make you feel this sad. A pretty stunning piece of work––and yes, unnerving. Can really get under your skin.
"I think it was mainly..."
"For some reason, Salem's Lot by Stephen King.
I think it was mainly because I was on a week-long hiking trip in the Australian bush and it got dark and scary at night. But damn, I had trouble sleeping for a couple of nights. Then the friend I was hiking with read it, and he couldn't sleep either."
This is probably my favorite early King––and for good reason. The sense of atmosphere is impeccable. Those characters are loveable and you genuinely care about what happens to them. Then the book veers from horror into tragedy. It's quite moving.
"Just the knowledge..."
"On The Beach.
It's the most soul-crushing book I've ever read, and there's really nothing scary in it.
Just the knowledge of impending death for everyone that feels so awfully heavy."
This is one of those books that makes you feel hopeless.
It's impeccably written but wow... it's a truly heavy read.
"You never knew..."
It's a classic. I found it to be immensely chilling. You never knew what would happen and the writing instilled a sort of dread. I read it in the dark before I went to bed until I finished it."
A book I can read and re-read over and over again. It's a beautiful horror novel. It's also a really fascinating window into the era and manages to say a lot about social and class mores.
"I'm Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid. Very creepy and unnerving, definitely scared me reading it at night."
I wanted to really like this one––unfortunately, I did not––but there's no denying that the first third or so (especially once the two protagonists get to the house) is pretty unnerving. Shame the payoff wasn't all that.
"It was disturbing and horrifying..."
"Helter Skelter. It's about the Manson murders and goes into quite a bit of detail. It was disturbing and horrifying because, unlike the King novels also mentioned, it's true. What they did to Sharon Tate is so absolutely devastating. Pure evil."
This book is gruesome and not for the faint of heart. The level of detail we dive into learning about the Tate-LaBianca murders is remarkable and also rather nauseating.
"So the book's characters..."
"Bird Box by Josh Malerman.
Forget the Netflix movie. The book's monsters are terrifying, in that you simply just don't know what they are or what they look like. They could be anything. What they are is enough to drive people insane by just being looked at.
So, the book's characters have to navigate a world mostly without one of our most used senses, and what's more terrifying than something you can't see?
This leads to some utterly scary scenes in the book that sent my heart racing and I had to put down for a breather."
It's a shame that movie wasn't all that and a bag of potato chips.
"It's a different kind of scary..."
"It's a different kind of scary, but The Handmaid's Tale. Atwood's dystopian nation feels not that far from reality sometimes, and it absolutely terrifies me."
We're going to go there.
Yes, this book is terrifying.
"I feel like the movie..."
"The Ruins, by Scott Smith, messed me up pretty good. My favorite kind of horror is psychological, and while there is a physical "entity" the real horror is the helplessness of this stranded group trapped by something they don't understand. Their desperate struggle to hold on to their sanity and the slow descent into hopeless desperation just really hit hard.
I feel like the movie was a fairly faithful adaptation, although it's been a while since I've seen it."
I love this book and have read it multiple times over the years. It's slow-going... and then the final one-hundred pages are just horrifying.
Well, if you haven't read any of these... What are you waiting for? Get on that. You won't regret it.
But also... the world is pretty scary right now, so we understand if you need to take a step back.
Have some suggestions of your own? Feel free to tell us in the comments below!
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Have you ever traveled to a city you've always heard good things about, only to be totally let down upon arrival?
When a friend insists we travel to certain cities because we would "just love it," they're setting the bar pretty high.
And a city can also boast a rich history or an attraction that makes us curious enough to find out what makes it so appealing.
But, alas, when we finally reach the destination, it's never exactly what we thought it would be.
Curious to hear from strangers online, Redditor tshirtguy2000 asked:
"What city is overrated?"
These are not officially real cities but they do have a rotating population.
It's Always A Party There
"As a former
slave associate at party city. I 100% agree."
"Lego City. There always has to be someone falling into the river."
"Cabot Cove, the murder capital of the world."
"Sure, the murders are all solved, but would you really want to live in a city with that much, easily solved, crime?"
Neighbor To Springfield
Shelbyville. Those f'kers steal trees from neighboring cities.
These were once considered destination cities but their popularity eventually took a nose dive.
"Atlantic City. Venture a few blocks off the boardwalk and it's incredibly depressing. Very clearly an area exploited by the big casinos while the locals have been driven to absolute poverty, while they still force a smile to work the shops that are required for the tourist traffic."
Lots Of Water
"Niagara Falls, Canada. I grew up there. Mayor pumps most of tax $ to casinos and tourism with flashy vegas-esque attractions."
"Myrtle Beach. I'm not even saying that it has a good reputation, I'm just saying that any shred of positive thinking about it makes it overrated."
Where A Creek Is An Exciting Attraction
"Lamb's Grove, Iowa. It's not the paradise on earth that people always say it is. Don't get me wrong, it's got great Chinese food but the motel 6 is meh at best."
Impressions for these cities fell far below expectation.
"Dubai. It's the clickbait of the world. 'We have the biggest/tallest/most expensive YOU WON'T BELIEVE when you see THIS...' It's hot as f*k, everything's a man-made tourist trap; labor exploitation and racism are rampant, and they try so hard to prove to the world how modern and Westernized they are. Really, it's just government propaganda."
"Miami. Horrible place filled with horrible people."
Truth be told, many cities can be overrated.
It just depends on a person's experience, or a resident's perspective about what it is about the location they live in that is nothing worth writing home about.
If I had to choose, I would say Las Vegas is overrated, but that's because there is nothing in Sin City that is of personal interest to me.
I may be severely judged for my opinion, but that is a gamble I'm willing to take.
The opposite sex can be a bit of a mystery sometimes. Our brains work differently just like our bodies and this can lead to certain sensitive questions. Guys tend to be a little less open but today it's time for the ladies to ask away. Even wondered what they really think or feel about their body, yours? Today's the day to get the answers you didn't know you needed.
Redditor William84000 asked:
“Women of reddit, what question do you have of men that you'd really like an answer to?"
His question started an informative thread for women to ask men the questions they've been wondering and receive honest, real-life answers.
“How long does it take to recover if you've been hit in the balls?” Snowy-avocado
“Anywhere from 5 minutes to literally turning to dust like we were Thanos snapped.” secondhand_organsdust whirls GIFGiphy
“The Big Dumb Object...”
“I've always wanted to know: why do you like loud machinery so much? For older men it's mowers, leaf blowers and such. For younger men, it's modified cars and motorbikes. What's the deal with the loud machines?” marshmellow_bunnyx
“Power and tools. Tools are a thing that gets stuff done, and they are loud because they contain the
natural essence power of violent explosions and fire. Most men like powerful things, instead of powerful people.”
“In sci-fi, this is called 'The Big Dumb Object', and is pretty much a trademark of sci fi books written by men” Connect-Zebra7173
To shave or not to shave?
“Does body hair on a woman bother you that much?" reillydean28
“Leg/arm hair? Don't even notice. Armpit hair? Not my thing but not my choice/decision. Pubic hair? I'd prefer not, but it's not going to stop me from getting the job done." wHUT_fun
It’s a power and control thing...
“Why send a d*ck pic?" stavinlawrence
“I think for most men it's a power dynamic thing. Either it gets them off or it just makes them feel in control."
“Then I assume there's the added bonus of if she likes it she might send a nude back. But these losers have a greater chance of buying a "get bigger penis pills" that actually work before a girl appreciates an unsolicited nude." InertialEclipse
"Do you notice the little things?”
“Do you notice the little things about women like a new hair cut, when they wear makeup or a nice outfit?” xforeverlove22
“I can't speak for everyone but for me, nope. Not at all. My uncle had a moustache for like 20 years and one day decided to shave it off. I didn't notice it. I noticed there was a weird atmosphere around me like ‘come on, say something’, so I small talked with him.”
“A few hours later after he left they asked me if I seriously didn't notice that his moustache was gone. My answer was ‘What moustache?‘ And makeup would definitly fly over my head.” PleaseTakeThisName
Lets just not touch people without permission...
“What things have women done that make you uncomfortable?" charloget
“Had a few grab my junk at random. Even had a couple that just forced a kiss on me. I don't usually experience women trying to pick me up, but the few times I did was never great. It was either negging, overly sexually aggressive and always in a group." bahamabanana
On today's episode of sink of float...
“Do penis' float like a buoy? I heard they do but have never been able to verify it.” TheFantasticV
“I mean it's buoyant but it can't really do much besides lazily sorta half float there. Still amused the f**k out of my wife to learn.” secondhand_organsGiphy
Everyone just wants to be loved...
“What makes you feel loved?” linedizzy
“A compliment, a hug or a kiss we don't have to initiate.” Nuitari8
“Do guys care if women get cosmetic procedures done?” dookieconductor
“I don't necessarily care about the work itself, I'd be more concerned about understanding why she felt like she wanted to get it done and help her feel body positive for whatever work has been done or if she feels like she needs work.” -notjosh-
Math will kill a mood everytime...
“What does it feel like when you're having sex and you're trying not to 'get there'? Is it frustrating? What do you do/think about to keep it from happening?" uhohoreolas
“I sometimes do math like 333*3... But often I am fine with just controlling things to focus mostly on her pleasure instead of mine. Tho sometimes she is excited and ends up moving in unaccounted ways while I am a hair away and there is no stopping it. I definitely don't find it frustrating. It is still very enjoyable." Fkire
Some of these Q&A's were unexpected but now we know! This important thing here though is knowing it's ok to ask questions sometimes.
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Everyone's got their own favorite food.
What are two foods that actually taste great together......even though most people don't eat them that way?
Breakfast is the most wonderful meal of the day. As the wise Leslie Knope once said, "Why would anybody ever eat anything besides breakfast food?" So mixing it up can feel blasphemous, but what if it's tasty?
Jam It On
"When I was growing up, it was standard procedure for us to put grape jelly on scrambled eggs. I did it when I went to college and everyone at the table stared at me. I still like it."
"That sounds gross af, but not too gross that I don't still want to try it. Haha"
Bringing People Together
"Peanut butter and maple syrup."
"My husband and I both grew up eating PB and syrup on our waffles. We took that as a sign it was meant to be."
"Peanut butter and syrup on waffles is one of the single best things I have ever had, also growing up with it"
Mustard?! Don't Let's Be Silly.
"Mustard with scrambled eggs. Actually I haven't had it in a while but from what I remember its really good"
"Mustard with eggs period"
Sauces and dips are critical to enjoying some foods. Mess with it too much and you risk ruining the delicacy. So that's why it's reassuring to see these people offering up their new spins on dip combinations.
Only For The Elegant Dining Experience
"Hummus and salsa mixed together with tortilla chips."
"Fancy bean dip."
Peanut Butter With Everything!
"Peanut butter and cheddar cheese (like the proper brick kind, not kraft cheese slices). When I was a kid I sometimes made myself pb and cheese sandwiches. They're very filling but delicious!"
"Toasted English muffin, butter, peanut butter, raspberry jam and marble cheddar on top. Lord have mercy on me."
"Add a litte hot sauce on the peanut butter."
Better Than Garlic Sauce?
"I already posted but I'm eating pizza with my friend right now and he likes his pizza with hummus."
"Hummus is good with so many things."
"So I make spaghetti noodles, but break up the raw noodles into smaller pieces. Once they're done I put in a an egg or two (mix it around) and let it cook. I swear it's not that bad. My Nonna always makes it for me when I go back to the Midwest to visit. It's good with parmesan cheese too."
And then there's these taste combinations. Mixtures so strange, you might just be willing to walk away from your phone or computer and try one now.
Sweet And Savory?
"Watermelon and feta cheese."
"With red onion and balsamic vinegar."
"Thats like the most basic summer thing in Greece, Balkans, Turkey together with some Uzo or Raki"
Who Lives In A Cheddar Under The Sea?
"Pineapple and cheddar."
"A guy at work introduced me to dipping a peanut butter and honey sandwich into chili. That was surprisingly great."
A Creative Spin On An Old Favorite
"Root beer float except with cherry Coke and chocolate ice cream. I was in middle school on a field trip, last in line at the cream shop, and ordered this after everyone else had done the standard root beer and vanilla. One of the cool girls who had never spoken my name before gave me this piercing look and asked if I would switch with her. I instinctively knew I would get zero benefit from this deal, so I said "Nope, ya gotta just remember it next time." That felt good."
Keep an open mind. Don't do this for every meal, sure, but always be ready to try something new.
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