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What are some subtle and more obvious signs of bad parenting? Someone recently asked, “What screams “I’m a bad parent?” Here are the top-voted responses.
Not Apologizing to Their Children
“Never saying sorry to the kid when the parents make a mistake,” one replied. Another shared The Narcissist’s Prayer: “That didn’t happen. And if it did, it wasn’t that bad. And if it was, that’s not a big deal. And if it is, that’s not my fault. And if it was, I didn’t mean it.
And if I did, you deserved it.”
Using Children as Pawns in Divorces or Separations
“Using children as pawns in divorces or separations,” one suggested. “As a divorce lawyer, I see this a lot, but also the opposite: parents bending over backward to not have anything to do with their kids,” a second informed.
Finally, a third confessed, “Worked in mental health for years. These people bring their kids in and can’t figure out why they are acting out and depressed. Then starts the delicate dance of telling the parents it’s their fault.”
Treating Your Kid as Your Therapist
“Treating your kid as your therapist,” one said. “Yeah, if your kid has to figure out YOUR problems, they will resent you later. They have enough of a difficult time figuring their own life out,” another added.
When Adults Tell Other Adults Their Children’s Shameful Secrets
“I hate when adults tell other adults their children’s shameful secrets for no reason. Even strangers! It tells me those children probably don’t feel like they can trust their parents,” one suggested.
Blaming Your Own Mistakes and Regrets on Your Kids
“Blaming your own mistakes and regrets on your kids,” one replied. A second stated, “Yeah, it’s not my fault I was born. It’s yours. And the irony of someone who didn’t raise the kid properly saying they were a mistake is even worse.”
“And on the flip side, living vicariously through your children because of your own mistakes and regrets,” a third person replied.
Making Your Child Think They Aren’t Good Enough
“Always saying things like, ‘Why can’t you be like (insert straight A student/best sportsperson/ most active student/ introverted person who doesn’t question parents here). Nothing can make a person feel more inadequate than being constantly compared to multiple other people who are doing better,” someone noted.
Using Them as Props and Gains for Your Social Media and YouTube
“Using them as props and gains for your social media and YouTube channel. It’s funny how child labor was outlawed decades ago, but we make an exception for entertainment,” shared one. Most people agreed with the sentiment.
However, others argued, “Disagree. Some rich kids will be set for life thanks to their parents letting them use YouTube. Especially that one kid (Ryans’ World) that gets toys sent to him, and he reviews them. His net worth is around $30 to $35 million.”
Demeaning Your Children as Means of Punishment
One volunteered, “Demeaning your children as means of punishment. Or demeaning for your own sake.” Another added, “The shame game. Brutal.” A third said, “I can’t believe people need to be reminded of this, but please be nice to children.” Finally, a fourth admitted, “The abusive head shave videos. I cry every time.”
Zero Interest in the Kid
“Zero interest in the kid,” one replied. “Doesn’t care what they do or what happens to them as long as they don’t inconvenience them.” Another added, “Only caring for the child when they do what you want them to do. For example, if they play the sport you want them to play.”
Ignoring Mental Health
Finally, someone stated, “Suggesting you’re too young to be depressed. Or say you have nothing to be depressed about because there are people out there with more difficult lives and ignoring red flags from mental illnesses.”
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