People Explain Which Things Their Parents Pressured Them To Do Growing Up

How many times have you heard your relatives ask you why you're wasting your time pursuing art when you could go out there to be a doctor or lawyer or something useful?

Sucks, doesn't it? You bet it does.

After Redditor Sky451 asked the online community, "What's something your parents constantly pressured you to do growing up?" people proved to be quick with their answers.

"Grade F"


Get better grades, be better at sports, nothing is EVER good enough. We have a couple of levels of schools, I wasn't in the highest, but scored 100% in my exam: not the highest level though, so nobody cares about your 100%.
Became the best in a certain sport in my country: well you're not World Champion are you, this means nothing.
They messed me up big time, took over 10 years of counseling. Floor-is


"Became the best in a certain sport in my country: well you're not World Champion are you"

Sorry they did that to you. Being the best in your country at anything is an incredible accomplishment, so congrats that you were there at one point.

My parents taught me that there would always be somebody better than me (not in a negative sense), especially when it came to sports. This was really helpful growing up, as there was never pressure to be THE best. big_thiccie2_0

"Arouns 12"

Around 12.

My Dad made me pay him 5c every time I said the word UMM because I was using it too much and it made me sound dumb.

If at the end of the day I didn't say UMM once, he gave me $5.

Got me outta the habit in about 2 weeks - lasted my whole life. nomdeplume_alias

"Stay skinny!"

Stay skinny! My mom made me start drinking diet pop when I was 14 because I was about 90 lbs and "might get fat." She jedi mind messed me up for most of my adult life.

Edit: for those wondering I was 5'3" at 14 and topped out at 5'4" at 15. PuppyPavilion

"Hush Bro"


Never raise my voice, even before fights I'll say mean crap in a polite voice. Ex: "hey bro, f*** you"

You read that quietly didn't you? IsmalCox


When choosing my career, they prompted me to value money over passion. carmmee

In my country there is a huge rate of unemployment. My parents insisted in making me study something I didn't love but was "useful." At the end, I have been years in a job not related at all with my studies and thinking if studying what I liked could have changed all that... at least I would have tried. angryhippo29

"Knock. Knock. Who's There?"

Knocking before you go into a room. I learned the hard way. BUT THEY NEVER KNOCK AND YOU KNOW HOW MANY DAMN TIMES THEY HAVE WALKED IN!! LDT124

The worst is my dad will knock and walk in. Like what's the point of knocking if you're just gonna walk in anyways? HassanaliBhimji


Career. You need good grades, you should go to university, you should aim for being a lawyer or a doctor, doesn't matter what makes you happy! As a women, you should be educated and have a big ass career, you owe that to us!

Well screw you, I can't work due to health issues and am a housewife now lol. Reddit

"Pretty Enough"

This still makes me cringe to this day. My mum thought I'd make a great model. Ok yes I was tall and thin, maybe 'pretty' enough but I was very shy and awkward. I was the teenager that wanted to hide at the back room in a crowd and hoped I wasn't noticed by anyone ever... and if you spoke to me I'd blush bright red, stutter and trip over anything I said.

Mum refused to listen or notice I had not even close the personality needed to model.. and she signed me up to modeling courses, photography classes etc. Pure torture and hell on earth. At the end of a 10 week course there would be a graduation night. OMG... catwalk modeling in swimwear and day wear and formal wear. Far out... I'm starting to hyperventilate now just thinking about it.

Spoiler alert. I didn't become a famous model (or any sort of model). Years later I did overcome my shyness and can now even run workshops and do public speaking but damn mum, she made my teen years hell... shudder.... I can still see her pulling out a new brochure or pamphlets for some new course she'd found that she was sure was 'the one' that would have some talent scout find me. To this day she'll pull out photo albums with pictures of me on stage.. 'look how gorgeous you were'.. and all I see is the terror in my eyes lol. CheeryCherryCheeky

"To the Left"


Started out writing with my left hand, was forced to change that. Now I'm left handed but I can write only with my right hand. Messed me up in subtle ways I can't quite explain. loopmutant

"Play What?"

Go outside and play. JackThomsom

I'm an only child. What am I supposed to do out there by myself. RhythmicStaccato

Yeah I feel you. I'm an only child as well, there were no other kids living near me, the few friends that I had all lived a few miles away, my parents almost never let me invite one of them over and I wasn't allowed to go over to their place on my own. So there just wasn't a whole lot I could do outside. SmokeWineEveryday

"The Perfect Son"

My parents have always tried to make me their perfect son. As if they're trying to make me as they would of liked when they were my age. My dad forced my into crap like cricket and painting which I never liked and was never good at. When they gave up on tryna teach me they still constantly remind me me on how much I used to "like" doing it. I've always wanted to make some form of content say on YouTube or twitch but my parents have always told me that it's a waste of time that I'll never get anything out of but like ffs what happened to all that sh!t you were trying to make me like. How tf has that helped me and my life. Porge069



Grow up. liquidxavius

Good advice for anyone, but most often used as a weapon against others because they didn't do what YOU wanted them to do. Cats-Ate-My-Pizza

"thanks mom"

Play golf, Swim, everything that could potentially set me up for in the future. I just wanted to be the perfect daughter and I felt so lost trying to do things to make me happy and them happy. Fast forward about two years, and I found out that my boyfriend golfed, so I am currently back in the game, thanks mom. avamidori



You need to have your own life planned 50 years ahead. RybaYTC

I would genuinely love to know about one person who managed to plan their life and succeeded to stick to their plan! tomasves02


My mom always tried to force me to go to church. I lost my faith when I was eight. I loved reading. I decided to read the Bible. I read a bunch of messed up things, and things contradicted each other A LOT.

I hated church, hated the fake people, hated everything about it.

She eventually stopped bringing me, when I'd point out in front of everyone the contradictions they were preaching. guitarfingers

"Back Up Dad"

Play sports:

Team sports specifically, and it was my dad doing the pressuring. I tried soccer, basketball, baseball, swimming, and even lacrosse. But then I got into karate and my dad had very little support for me in that but it helped me be a better person in all aspects.

It helped me be more outgoing and it taught me discipline and respect for others as well as how to defend myself.

While I was doing that I was learning guitar which my dad also did not show support until I started getting really good and playing in bands.

TL:DR my dad pushed me to play team sports but I chose music and karate instead without his support. frozeneskimo02

"Brotherly Mess"

Be more like my younger brother. My brother could keep his room clean, focus better in school, was a healthier weight, and wasn't as awkward around people. Here's the kicker, he's never lived on his own. He went from living at home to living with his girlfriend, now wife. He would be completely clueless if he had to take care of bills, groceries, and all that stuff alone. I also spent most of my life with my ADHD undiagnosed. It's been in the last 7ish years that I even found out I have ADHD. Despite all this, I still love my brother because none of it was his fault. He was just doing his thing like I was. LittleMissRawr78

"No Shame"


STOP shaming the family, hide my sexuality, change it, be straight. GlobalFairyInc

"Don't Overdue"

Being overly prepared. It just left me carrying around all these random objects on trips for just in case this very of rare incident happened (it never did) and more seriously made me a very anxious person. arbio

SAME, it got to the point where i stopped going places so i didn't have to lug around useless crap. haydenantonino

"The pigskin"


Playing football. Everyone wanted me to be this great football player because my dad was pretty good and played through college. I played even though I hated it until I was in the 7th grade... to make things worse for about 2 to 3 of those years my dad was one of my coaches and he worked me so hard, which added to the reasons I didn't want to play. ctw1271

"1 line of code at a time"

My father would constantly tell me to work in a world changing app "1 line of code at a time". it didn't make sense to me then, and even now i still don't understand it, I got into coding thanks to that constant push but even to this day I don't think you can program a cohesive app like that. HistoricalFun4

"Happy-Thank You"

It might not be that important, but my parents would hound me about saying BOTH "Happy Halloween" and "Thank you" after getting candy while trick or treating. If I didn't say one of them, they would constantly remind me for the next few houses. It was when I was old enough to understand, but young enough to get flustered in front of a stranger and forget what I was supposed to say. TYUIOP-AI-ASSISTANT

"I'm Out!"


My parents force me to become a advocate for handling all law matters in court. InformationalCorner

"the search"

Searching for a job. Red_Distruction

Same here. My mom wanted me to work in any dead end apprentice job when I was a teenager (12-14 years) but I always refused. Didn't want to work a lot and lose my afternoons for almost no money. Current_Equal

"No Generic!"

Don't use cheap condoms. EhlersDanlosSucks

That is actually very good advice. boiyougongetcho

"Art is Broke"


Get a job in literally anything except art. They supported art as a hobby, but my whole family has admitted that they think I'll be a starving artist. CleverCrepe

Here is a flow chart on making a living as an artist:
Do you draw fetish stuff on the internet?
No->Starving artist.
Yes->Grats on your sweet gig. ControlledSingular

"it's beautiful."

i'm a trans man, i was named after my great grandmother when i was born. i tried to come out to my parents as trans a couple times and they just acted like they didn't hear me but would then go out of their way to talk about my gender - ie., "what dress are you wearing to prom?" "you know, your name has been in the family for generations. it's beautiful." "your dad always wanted a baby girl, he was so happy when you were born" etc. etc. that last one was a big point of guilt and hesitation for me since i have 5 brothers and no sisters from my dad.

thing is, i really like my old name. it just didn't fit. they eventually listened to me when i took them to a therapy session with me and came out then. especially took me seriously when i started hormones. they're both a lot more open-minded and accepting now, but from 14-18 yrs old i just sort of assumed they were going to disown me. qbtic

"Ball Time"

Play baseball. I was always into basketball and football as a kid. My dad is kinda racist and said a white kid like me had a better chance in baseball. And that it was safer and I could play it longer. I was pretty stubborn so I hated baseball until I was about 17. FoghornLeghornnn

"the ivories"


Piano classes. Took 7 years and I hated every day of music school. Also, to be a good Christian. Which was kind of useless in the end. Rudzis12

"Don't Cry"

Kind of to be a silent submissive wife with children. Whenever I showed emotion or got rightfully upset about something it was always "I'll give you something to cry about" or that I don't respect them. So depressed teenage years came and some lashing out as an adult because I bottled up all my emotions until it got too much and I realized I needed a lot of therapy. So almost three years of therapy, a loving and compassionate partner (soon to be husband) later I'm almost at a point where I no longer show bursts of emotions but try to explain why I'm upset or angry.

The kids part turned into "I can actually choose not to be a mom? That's amazing because I actually don't want them". Lifted a lot of weight of my chest and after a couple of persistent years (where are my graaaaaaandbaaaaabys) they don't ask anymore. penguinforscale

" It didn't work "

I used to be a super creative, ginormous book worm. My family encouraged it, and i loved the attention. The fantasy worlds I escaped to and burned through at lightning speed was nice, too. Then, i started my freshman year of high school. That ability to win the award for most AR points crashed, and my aunt asked where that'd gone. She tried making me get a book to bring it back... It didn't work. Honestly? It kinda hurt that i was expected to be the bookworm, even after I'd grown out of that phase. I still love fiction stories, don't get me wrong, I just read it on AO3 now. SaandGuardiaan

"being demi"

Be perfect. Get good grades. Don't say anything that will upset 1 person in the world or you're a disappointment. You can't be fat or nobody will love you (said to me when I was 9). Don't speak. Look perfect.

A big one: Don't lie about your stupid head. This was after I finally got the courage to tell my family about my sucidal thoughts and depression. Also, after I came out to my older sister as a demisexual. Reddit

"Athletics Again"


Sports. I was not a naturally athletically gifted child, and team sports were the worst for me, but my parents insisted on signing me up for soccer, softball, volleyball, and basketball leagues for years. I still hate participating in any kind of sport to this day. alwaystimeforcoffee_

"Be Normal"

Be normal. I was her freak child who was always bad no matter what I did. I didn't behave how she liked, didn't like the right things, didn't dress right (she had me in hand me down male clothes, how could I look like a girl wearing them???). I was just never good enough no matter what I did. She hated my hair. She refused to let me have friends while at the same time telling me I was a freak and would never have any.

As an adult she still hated who I am. I'm too tall, too big. I don't dress right, don't look right, don't like the right things, I'm not the child she wanted. We haven't talked in a few years now. I'm a normal girl, a bit too tall but normal. I have friends, I met a sweet man who she would hate because he isn't white. I'm everything she hates, because she's jealous. She even told me she was. I've had to fight to get this life. Zanki



My mom always said that me and my younger brother had to graduate high school. Both my older sisters did so i guess she just wanted all of her children to graduate. It sounds reasonable enough right? But sadly my mom passed away when i was 13 so at that point i basically just stopped caring about school and pretty much everything else and i started drinking,smoking and i said forget it and dropped out during my sophomore year. My brother also dropped out during his sophomore year but not a day goes by that i don't regret not staying in school. I'm also sure that my poor mom would have been disappointed in both of us for not finishing. Stay in school kids. cappilla

"Decison Maker"

Have an idea of what i wanted to do with my life - in no way were they pressuring me to do a specific thing, and they were very clear that they were supportive of whatever i choose. They just wanted me to know what i wanted to do so I could work towards it; which as a very indecisive (but stressy) person just added extra internal pressure. StarshipCaptains


To not spend money.

Parents constantly screamed at each other about minor stuff, like $5 on screwdrivers from Walmart despite being pretty damn wealthy.

Dad made over 200k annually, but I was too scared to ask for money to go on a 5th grade class field trip to six flags.

Ended up being the only one in class who didn't go.

Sat with a substitute teacher in class until I lied and said my mom was supposed to pick me up at 10. Walked home and lied saying that it was a half-day. YeOLDEdandy

"Jesus Who?"


Go to church. I was a pretty self motivated kid who loved school so they didn't have to worry about me too much in general.

I'm a successful adult now, but an atheist. Sorry mom and dad! queennbee

"A family friend..."

A family friend of mine wasn't allowed to date as a teenager. If he showed interest in a girl his parents just teased him about it, or they told him that relationships distracted him from getting good grades.

As a result he then became quite hesitant in interacting with the opposite gender and unfortunately it shows now. He's now in his late 20s and whilst he has a very successful career, he still hasn't even kissed a girl and is still generally very awkward around women.

The moment he graduated university, his parents have been saying "When are you going to bring a nice girl home? We want grandkids!". They've been constantly hounding him about it. I have a feeling they are going to be massively disappointed, but at the same time I hope he proves me wrong.


"Fluid Now"

I'm not sure if it was intentional or not but they really emphasized gender roles and would make fun of me if I ever did something that went against my assigned sex. Jokes on them though, now I've realized I'm genderfluid and am being as masculine and feminine as I damn well please. Robinisnotaline

"Here on behalf..."

Here on behalf of Asians. The three magic words are: Doctor, lawyer or engineers.

Any other career is a failure.


"You're so smart"

Because I like to write, they assumed that I always was capable of writing anything at any given time, and couldn't grasp that maybe I didn't always WANT to write, and maybe I was blocked sometimes. Creativity isn't just a switch you can flip on or off... at least in my experience.

I also constantly got the "You're so smart, you should aim higher and higher than where you currently are" spiel. Aka the "nothing is ever enough" spiel. Let me figure out what my own damn happy place is, thanks.



Alcohol, as early as 13 I was doing shots with family and friends. I live in Wisconsin and am surrounded by alcoholism. Now I'm 34 years old with the liver of a 50 year old sailer. Cheers matey.


"In a bit of a role reversal..."

In a bit of a role reversal, I've always been pressured by my mom to become a professor of arts or humanities and it drives me crazy. There's a lot of creative professionals on her side of the family so I've had a lot of experience with that sort of thing but it's never "clicked." I'm starting to get my sh!t together to apply to law school this fall and she's gotten super cagey talking about it.



Chores. Like, an insane amount. I'm almost certain my dad only wanted kids in order to clean up his mess. After I got a job in high school they had me come home during my open school periods in order to get my chores done because I was no longer around after school to do them.


"That sounds like a good thing..."

Be self sufficient/independent. This sounds like a good thing and it is, in moderation. But sometimes kids need some emotional or financial support. 10 year olds should not be made to feel guilty for having needs, like sympathy or socks.


"My mom wanted me..."

My mom wanted me to be a doctor. Followed closely by lawyer. I'm 28 and she is still trying to get me to be a lawyer.


"To get..."

To get a blue collar factory job that I'd hate that would work me to death with 6 days of 12 hour shifts just because it would get me money. Like literally recommending I drop out if college to do that, even though I have 0 qualifications and am not interested in that field. They also tried to convince my partner to do the same even though he has a good paying job.


"Now I'm double majoring..."

Make babies, give them grandchildren, find a husband, and become a stay at home mom that homeschooled her kids.

Now I'm double majoring in STEM courses, planning to attend graduate school for a masters, and was even encouraged by one of my professors to pursue a PhD.


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