We're just past Father's Day at time of writing, and hopefully people took to social media or visited with social distancing involved to show how much they appreciate their dad. Unfortunately, not everyone had a solid male, or female, role-model in their life, someone to watch over and help guide them through childhood in a positive way. Thankfully, some people learn from their parents' mistakes and can become better from it.

Reddit user, u/sidarth23, wanted to hear about:

[Serious]What are the things your parents have done to you which you wouldn't do to your child?

Don't Slam


We've never taken the doors off of our kids rooms (old house, old doors, a big pain in the neck) but every time they slammed their door, I calmly walked back to their room, stood inside their room with them, and had them close it softly 5 times. I would say 'It's OK to be angry but it's not OK to have a fit. Slamming the door is having a fit." And then I would leave the room so they could calm down.

It didn't take very long for them to learn. When they got angry, they would stomp and huff and puff back to their rooms and then... softly close the door.


No Excuses

My father always compared me to my siblings and made me feel like sh!t, and when I didn't do well he would hit me and punish me but he never put in the effort to find the problem or help me. It was only when I went abroad for a year in high school that I found out I have learning disabilities and that I could get help and improve! I felt like he didn't care (which in retrospect was probably accurate) and that he only paid attention so he would have an excuse to hurt me.


Thankfully he's an Ex

My ex step dad had no issues punishing me and my brother in questionable ways. I have a scar on my back from when he took a branch that was on fire from our fire pit and would whack the hell outta me with it. One time he also pinned me down and would let my sister repeatedly punch me in the nose because I apparently had upset her. I remember one time our deep freeze got left open and all the meat dethawed and he would whip me and my brother until one of us confessed. Turns out it was him after all during a drunk night and he wanted something to eat.


I'm not having kids

Hmm let's see

-neglected me in a crib for days in the hot sun to the point where I had maggots in my diapers

-sent me to school with scratches and bruises

-hit me directly in the head with things

-threaten to kill me

-treat me like a complete failure in my teen years without questioning WHY

Oh and when I got taken away and put in a foster home?

I'm not having kids. But that's because I'm unstable and tend to isolate.


Gossip Gal


I hate when my mom gossips about my private life to literally everyone. And then she gets upset when I wont tell her things, like bawling extremely heartbroken kind of upset. She can act pretty entitled to my emotions and information about me with out actually earning it. It's so draining.


The Basics

Not explaining to my 12 yo daughter about woman period.


My mom gave me an American Girl book about puberty and left the rest of my education about women's health to the school system. I only recently learned discharge is normal and your body cleaning itself. Health class is a joke.


be better

Physical abuse, mental and verbal abuse. My mother and step father commented on my body a lot.

I am better now! It took a lot of years of healing and therapy, but I've accepted it as part of my past. Thank you for asking. (:


~my awful awful parents~  

Refusing to accept that my child has feelings, every damn time I'm criticized for playing games and enjoying my time. My parents seem to enjoy pulling similar stunts, whenever I lash out because I'm mad it's always, "must be those damn games you play"

~my awful awful parents~


$$$$ Issues


Ask for Money, especially now knowing how much my mother spends on pointless things and then wonders why they don't ever have money. Just annoying and I don't feel bad any more. My father bust his @ss to make money and she just blows it all.


Be There For Me

Chose drugs over me, left me with a babysitter that abused me for years, choke slammed me to the ground, dropped a knee in my chest fracturing my sternum, tried to fight me for my smart mouth. Those are just a few gems of my wonderful childhood. Oh yes and now I am the perfect picture of mental health.


My dad was not a good dad

Stop talking to them over a woman (twice), and let them forget I'm here for them and I love them.

My dad was not a good dad.

I remember when I was little after my parents got divorced, I would sit on our front steps with my little suitcase waiting for my dad because he'd tell me he was coming to get me. My mom would get a call from my dad making some excuse as to why he couldn't come get me. She told me she would break down and cry because she was the one that had to tell me he wasn't coming, and she knew I'd be upset and likely cry. This happened a lot.

I also remember when they made us start dialing area codes. I was probably 7. I didn't know, so I'd dial the 7 digit number and it just gave me a busy signal. I tried to call him for months. I would sit there and cry because I wanted my dad to just be my dad and I didn't know if he was even alive. Turns out he was alive, he just didn't care to give his son a call.

Growing up without a dad sucks. My son will never experience that. I hug him, and kiss him, and tell him I love him all the time. Maybe too much, but I don't care. He's 5 and he'll be pushing me off him before long. I'd rather him be spoiled than go through what I went through.


the hard way


Teach them that the only acceptable way to live is the way they do. Grew up with some serious judgmental thoughts about people different from me that are still hard to drive out.


Get Up

Moms an absolute psycho so basically everything different. If I didn't wake up for school at a specific time, she would beat me up and throw me out the house with no lunch.

So yeah, childhood at home was no fun. TuggeTargaryen

"ok you've cried enough now stop."

My mom never allowed me to express my emotions in a healthy way. Whenever I would cry, there would be a time limit like "ok you've cried enough now stop." Same thing with every other emotion as well, especially negative ones.

My dad was the "fun" parent to me until I grew up and realized he emotional and mentally abused my brother and my mom. I never got the brunt of any of it because I was his favorite

I was the favorite for everyone and always needed to be a mediator because no one could communicate properly. You shouldn't force a 15 year old to be a messenger

In the end my mom realized that she needed to stop hindering my emotionally maturity but still slips into really bad habits of "ok that's enough here is advice."

My dad is still a piece of crap. He stopped the abuse mostly but even so he's the type that has given up on himself and won't try to get better than he was. He's disappointed me too many times

I won't tell my kids it's not bad to cry. I won't hold grudges against them. I won't play favorites. Both me and my husband had bad parents and I know I'll be doing mistakes too but I'll own up to it and do my best to learn.


Who's There?


KNOCK. Please always knock. Also don't just knock while you're in the midst of opening the door, that doesn't count. Knock, wait for a response, then come in. Not only for when you're doing things you don't want your parents to do, but also just allows the kid to feel a lot more private in their room, knowing you respect that boundary.



Severely restrict video games.

My parents didn't grow up with them, so they viewed video games as dumb, or at worst, bad for you. Why they'd be worse than watching TV, I don't know.

It just killed me to not be able to even use my own money to buy an NES. Still stings today
when I think about that. My kids & I have a blast today.


early zzzz's.....

Make me go to bed every single day at 7:30pm. Well, I'm 16 (almost 17) right now and my bedtime is 9:15 (even in the weekends/vacation, which is still ridiculous IMO), but I take my phone with me and go to sleep at around 10:30 which is more reasonable to me. :)


forever mine


My parents disowned me, 7 and a half years ago. I WOULD NEVER EVER DISOWN MY 2 BOYS!!!!!!!!!!!


so not beautiful... inside

Make my daughter feel insecure about her looks or feel that her entire worth is tied to her looks. My mom's an attractive woman. I took a lot of my looks from my dad's side of the family and she made it no secret that she felt they weren't attractive people. She would compare my looks to other girls. I was an awkward teen. She didn't like how my hair is more Afro textured, or how I put on make up. It took my husband to help me to realize that I didn't need make up to be pretty. Girls go enough insecurity about their looks. I won't be the one to make it worse.


Running to College

Threaten to put your kid in an insane asylum for just crying a lot. Tell your teenage daughter she should dress up like this more often so she can get a boy to like her. Tell your suffering kid who is crying from pain that they will be homeless if they can't clean up their act. Tell your kid they are broken. Tell your kid to suck it up. Scold your kid for getting a 'C' and a threatening look at a 'B' with a comment of "you really should try harder" despite all other grades being an 'A' Call your kid a drama queen. Make your kid cry so much they start keeping track.

All things told or done by my father who I call Scrap, as recently he showed he cares more about getting his donuts than a human life. I can't wait to leave for college again.


none of your business


Stay out of my kid's business. My parents weren't controlling at all, but they were nosey and I've always been a very private person. I felt like I couldn't live any kind of life when I lived with them, because they'd pry and ask me questions. If my kids don't feel like sharing some detail of their life with me, in not going to pry unless I think it's hurting them in some way.


boomer mentality

They would never and still never apologize. Even if they did something wrong. They are always right and will argue tooth and nail. The sky is not blue it's green, so stop arguing with me right now.

Boomer mentality that you can't appear weak and being or admitting you're wrong makes you weak.



When I was a kid I rarely was allowed to see friends outside of school. Could be part of the reason I'm socially awkward sometimes now. If it's someone I've known for awhile I don't have a problem holding conversation but first dates are a little rough sometimes.


I Can Hear You

They put hidden microphones all over my room, basement and probably some other places too. I discovered them when my mom kept on calling me when I used the family computer. probably suspecting me of watching inappropriate stuff. She also searches my phone every night when she thinks I am sleeping. I don't have kids yet but when I do I would never do that and teach my kids to respect their kid's privacy too. and If you are wondering I am 15 only a few more years until I move out. Other than this my mom is pretty nice so yeah she just needs to respect my privacy.


How 'Lady Bird' of Me


Fight in front of them.

My parents fought a lot around me and I hated it growing and do not want to subject my kids to that. Like sure it's important show them how to handle disagreement, but not get into screaming matches like my parents.

I remember one time when I was about 8 years old, I was in the car with my parents. They were arguing like always, but being trapped in that metal box with both of them screaming back and forth became too much. We stopped at a red light and I unbuckled my seatbelt and got out of the car and started running. My mom, who was in the passenger's seat ran out after me and after he pulled over the car my dad did as well. They caught up to me and their attitudes completely changed.

They promised me they wouldn't fight in front of me again, a promise they broke time and time again until their divorce. I'm hoping I can do a better job of keeping my promise.


avoiding life

Socially isolate them or avoid family get togethers. I wouldn't tell them not to do something or to do something without explaining to them why, I wouldn't scream or shout at them over the pettiest of things.


Out of the Bubble

They didn't give us the freedom to develop our own thoughts. I think my mom thought of us as little human molds to form into her worldview and beliefs, instead of letting us have the freedom to figure it out on our own.

I didn't learn it until years later. To this day I still feel pretty isolated from my parents. I can't have open discussions with them because of the bubble they're in. I get jealous of my friends who can have really engaging adult talks with their parents.

I want to teach my kids how to critically think and not what to think. Ask them what their opinion is on different topics. I never had those kinds of thought provoking discussion.


"too old"


Not having kids, but tell them it's bad to like the same gender or tell them they have to grow up and stop watching cartoons/playing with toys.

Forget you both, I live with my boyfriend and all the toys I missed out on because I was "too old."


minimal guidance

Only giving minimal guidance on adult skills & major life choices - budgeting, taxes, college applications, how to buy a car, etc.

I don't regret how my life has turned out so far, but I got so little help that I ended high school with no financial intelligence, got myself started on the wrong foot, & am only just now able to consider going to college.

If my folks had taken a couple weekends to sit down and go "let's figure out FAFSA and student loans together" or "now that you're paying for things, do you want us to help you build a budget", my life might have turned out very differently.

(To be fair, I'm also stubborn when it comes to asking for help, so I don't blame them or think they did it "wrong", I just wish they'd done it differently.)


I'm sorry... I'm Broken

I wish I could say I did not repeat any of the horrible stuff my "care givers" did to me. My son was taken away from me by the state, with just cause, and raised in foster care. What I did not do was gaslight him or blame the victim. I let him know what I did was very wrong and he did nothing to cause being treated that way. I told him that telling his teacher was a good, healthy thing and I was proud of him for doing it. I let him know that I did love him very much but I was broken in a way that means I can not be the very good mommy he deserves. That was the very least I owed him, to not play with his mind and make him think it was his fault.


Once they're 18


When I was in college, I stayed out late with some friends. We were at my friend's place and a storm hit. We chose to wait it out before going home.

Mom was mad and took my car away for a week or two. The problem is, it was my car purchased entirely with my own money. I felt she didn't have the right to take it, especially since I was over 18.

I did still live at home, and I don't care that she was mad I stayed out late. I just felt that taking my car was wrong. I would not do that to my own kid in the same situation.


I'm Just Me.. not Lisa

Compare me to my sister. We were and are vastly different through every stage of life. Just because you preferred her way of life growing up (she was a straight A, smart, mostly obedient child. I was a go fast, impulsive, later pot head). I don't know, being compared rather than loving me for who I was hurt. My mom later apologized for doing this after we got older, but I won't forget feeling like "oh.. she doesn't like me, but would if I was like *Lisa".

Never tell your children "why can't you be more like your sister/brother?"


Unnecessary Viewing

My parents thought that all cartoons were for kids. They rented some studio Ghibli (moving castle and spirited away) films for me once and I had nightmares for days. They also let me watch YouTube religiously which didn't help either. I had gotten so deep into ghost and celebrity clones celebrities I was even afraid of flushing the toilet at one point. I used to sleep with a nightlight until I was like 11 or 12. At least the good thing that came out of this is that they didn't have any problems with me watching South park.


They Were Learning

My parents are really great, but they took many wrong cues from their old school parents :

  1. Beating us to discipline. They would hit us for any little infraction, from things like spilling food, getting homework questions wrong, etc.
  2. Yelling and screaming. Instead of getting to the root of the problem, my parents would constantly yell at us if we misbehaved. I lived with constant anxiety that I would be yelled at. When I became an adult, I vowed never to raise my voice at any child and approach with patience and understanding.
  3. Sending us to catholic school. Enough said.
  4. Not taking us seriously. My parents never believed we were sick or in pain or had mental health issues.
  5. Not understanding that my life is different than theirs.

Edit: I want to reiterate that my parents are great people. They were always supportive and they're good people. The point of my comment was to express that their child rearing practices were outdated and I don't agree with them. I was never abused and my parents never hit us or yelled out of anger or for no reason. They just believed firmly in discipline and I don't think they realized that their approach wasn't the best. smoothjazz1

Anger Issues

I live in India and we are made to strictly follow the course of school ...... So I was a seventh grader arrogant and ignorant and I don't complete my notes got a small fall in my grades and my teachers call my mom.

My mom is a hot headed single mother and basically has anger issues as well which I as well inherited.

So back to the flow she got to know and I get beaten by a badminton racquet If that wasn't enough I was made to stand naked on my front door and people saw me ..... A lot of them I wouldn't let my anger issues ruin my kid and give them insecurities like this.


"We never said that."


Gaslighting. All the other bull that happened aside, the blatant gaslighting. "We never said that." "We don't know what you're talking about." "Sorry, don't remember that." It lingers and builds resentment and kills any respect that's left. I hate to say it, because I honestly hate gaslighting, but once in a while I will do it back to them if and when we talk and I feel no remorse.


'my baby'

Ooh, off the top of my head:

- tell my child they are poison and will amount to nothing for not putting clothes in the laundry basket
- fake an overdose on a family holiday to teach children a lesson
- play favorites and pick the pathological liar because he's 'my baby'
- split my daughter's lip and later insist this is a false memory
- blame therapy for dredging up the past

(Writing this list I was actually questioning myself, but these are the things that have affected me the most).


Everything is not ok

In case anyone is scrolling through the comments and reevaluating the impact their childhood had/continues to have: r/CPTSD

Sometimes a person's sense of normal can be very, very skewed due to outright physical abuse or less visible emotional neglect. Suddenly realizing everything wasn't as hunky-dory as you thought can be tough. The CPTSD community can help you through it.


One too Many


Have too many kids and expect the older kids to take care of the younger kids instead of being able to have an actual childhood.


Promises. Promises.

My mother did two things that bother me. First, she'd become irrational if she got angry and cannot to this day admit when she's wrong. Second, she'd do things like tell me not to lie... and then I'd catch her in a lie. So she did not practice what she preached.

Promised myself I'd never do either of those if I had a kid.

Promise kept.


It's Literally All Around Us


Mine is pretty mild.

My mom used to severely limit my media intake. I get where she was coming from, trying to protect me from sexual ideas and violence when I was young. The problem was that it limited my knowledge of literally everything. I had a hard time fitting in because of it. I remember leaving my friend's birthday sleep over because going to see the Titanic was part of the party (I still have never watched it).

Being raised vegetarian certainly didn't help. I was always invited to my friends houses for cookouts and always had explain that my mom won't let me eat anything. One time she grounded me for eating grapes at a friends house, claiming it would spoil my dinner when in reality I was really just trying to be polite to the woman who was trying extra hard to accommodate a snack for me.I feel like my life could have gone in a completely different direction if I had been able to explore ideas more. To consider different lifestyles and be inspired from conflicts. Idk.


Dance For Us, Monkey

Make fun of me in front of company. It wasn't malicious just thoughtless. Now my mom always complains that I don't tell her anything. I literally told her once "this is why I don't tell you things" and it was like she'd never considered that I might not want everyone and their brother to know my personal business.


It's Becoming An Outdated Mode Of Discipline

Spank me with a wooden spoon until I'd give in to whatever they were asking. Never will I ever.


Spanking never once made me reconsider or regret my behavior. It just made me more careful to hide it in the future, and eventually made me great at fake-crying and lying to my parents in general. And since it was the go-to punishment for everything, the punishment was never proportionate to the misdeed. All indiscretions were punished the same so they all seemed equally bad, which is a sh-t lesson to teach.

It's 100% just adults relieving their anger in a physical manner, but instead of punching a pillow or going for a jog, they hit the thing that they think is causing the anger. No better than kicking a dog.


Act Like You're Always Open

If my dad found out I had a crush on a girl, he'd tease me and make me feel embarrassed about it. Made me feel like I could never go to him for advice on girls.


Every Child Is Unique And Different

Comparing my grades/successes with my sibling's, I feel like it can be really disheartening and discouraging for the one that doesn't perform as well


Listen To Your Kids


My dad yelled at me for complaining about my broken arm. I didn't know it was broken at the time, and he just screamed at me to stop whining about the pain(i was 10 at the time).

Still mad about that, i would never be so short tempered with my kids, and actually listen to them when they say something is wrong.


My whole life I've heard "there's nothing wrong with you!" Whenever I hurt. Broke my finger? There's nothing wrong with you. I even got into trouble for that one. So now I'm 34 and lived with acute pancreatitis for a year (unbearable pain) because I was afraid the the doctor would say the same thing my parents always did. I could have died.


Act Like An Adult

My parents couldn't talk to each other after they got divorced so they used me as a message board.

"Tell you mother...."

"You tell your father...."

F-cking grow up and talk to each other


You'll Actually Get Some Privacy

When I was three I slammed my door. They took the door off the hinges and refused to ever put it back. We had to move to a different house before I got a door, over a decade later, and I had to move out before I had a door with a lock.

I would never destroy my kids's privacy like that.


Give Them Some Space


Control everything. I don't necessarily have a helicopter mom, but she's definitely controlling. I'm 20 years old and she CRIED and told me I was being selfish when I told her I wanted my SSC and my birth certificate when I moved a few states away. I don't know how to file my own taxes. I never did anything.

I would have preferred her tell me more things and help me do things rather than do it all herself and keep me out of the loop.



My mom faked cancer for two years when I was in high school. Even shaved her head and everything. Haven't spoke to her in 12 years. She disgusts me.


Just A Whole List Of Awful

Tell them to come/stay into the living room (even late in the evening) and argue in front of them to have them as "witnesses".

Have them stand and face the wall of my bedroom for 40 minutes while I lie in bed and watch some things on my laptop.

Drive dangerously in my car (sudden full stops on the highway, aggressively speeding and changing the gear aggressively) when the children are arguing in the backseat (to scare them? Idk really why my father did this.)

Stop allowing contact with my brother/brother-in-law because he's gay, and alienating the entire family with this; ensuring that my child has no family except parents and sibling.

Edit: Sorry I worded this weirdly, I tried to write it from the perspective of my parents I guess. My father forbid my mother contact with her brother because he's gay.

Locking them in a dark bathroom for at least 20 minutes.

Force my religion/belief on them.


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