As parents, it can be tempting to look at our little ones lives of leisure – being fed, clothed, played with, and loved every day with little expectations placed on them in return – and forget that it can and is hard to be a small person, too.
They have their own set of problems, and sure, they might be harder to see as issues than say, piles of laundry, bills that aren’t paid, and saving for college.
That said, things like these 16 can be super tough to understand and to navigate when you’re a kid, so take a moment and try to remember what it was like!
16. Adults forget to treat you like a whole person.
What I remember most was some adults not treating me like a human being just because I was a child.
I try so hard with my own kids to step back and treat them as fellow humans and not just children. A 4 year old needs their own space and gets frustrated and gets angry in exactly the same way I do. They just don’t have the vocabulary and awareness to express it.
My job is to help them express it, validate it and teach them how to deal with it.
Not just to tell them to stop whining.
15. Moms always think it will be better in the morning.
my sister slipped and broke her arm at the pool when we were kids and my mum insisted she was just dramatic (although oddly enough she didn’t even cry, just calmly tried to explain she couldn’t move it and it hurt really bad).
My mum made her sleep on it that night and only when her arm was swollen and purple the next morning did our mum take her to the hospital.
14. Not enough people get down to your level.
I was on my pediatrics rotation in medical school and saw a little kiddo having a meltdown in the waiting room, the mom was getting flustered and frustrated. Then one of the peds residents was walking though the waiting room. He got down on one knee and instead of scalding the child like the mother was, he asked the little kiddo what was wrong.
The child said he forgot his favorite toy at home and was afraid something would happen to it. Instead of telling the kid that his toy was safe and that he needs to stop crying, the resident asked his mom if anyone was home. The dad was. The resident asked the mom if she could text the dad and ask if the toy was safe. Less than 5 minutes went by when the dad sent a picture with the toy and all was well.
The little boy was all sunshine and rainbows after that, all it took was just empathizing with a child and putting yourself in the mindset of a 4 year old. To us it seems so trivial that he left his toy at home, but to him that toy is his whole world. He has spent thousands of hours with it and probably has a special bond. I can’t imagine how it would feel to just have that dismissed by the parent when they tell you to just “calm down and be quiet.”
13. You would give your left arm for some space.
Living in a house with just one bathroom and so many people.
Seemed like someone was always using the toilet or the shower when others needed use of the room.
12. Everything can feel like a catch-22.
In teens specifically- “Grow up and be more independent!”
Gets a job and saves to eventually move out one day
“You need to come home sooner, I don’t care if you have a job I’m still your mother/father”
11. Funny what doesn’t seem so bad looking back.
Had a large extended family as an Indian and there would gatherings and functions almost every week.
Coming of age, house warming, marriage, 1st birthdays called for gatherings between 100-2000 people. You had to dress up and meet people that apparently cleaned your snot as a baby expecting you to remember that they did so. It was horrid.
Kinda miss it now though.
10. It can feel impossible to please the adults in your life.
Every fucking year:
Parents: You are lazy and only play video games all day. I had my own job when I was 12 and was barely ever home when I was your age.
Me: Can I get a job?
Dad: No, you have to focus on school.
Me: How about over the summer?
Mom: No, summer is for spending time with your family, and this could be one of your last years to enjoy your childhood. Maybe next year.
9. Parents are so hard!
If you tell the truth, I wont get mad.
Sure thing mom. Here’s what happened.
ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME? WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK POSSESSED YOU TO DECIDE THAT THAT WAS A GOOD IDEA? GO TO YOUR ROOM! DONT COME OUT UNTIL TOMORROW!
But mom, its 9 in the morning.
I DONT GIVE A SHIT! I DONT WANT TO SEE YOU FOR THE REST OF THE DAY!
8. Sometimes the people who are supposed to love you refuse to understand you.
My mother stigmatizing me for loving pink, playing the flute, wanting to be a nurse, et cetera.
7. I mean, at least kids today have Alexa for that.
Not getting explanations for things I asked about.
My parents and extended family were good-hearted people, but none of them were very intellectually-minded, so when I had questions about how things in the world were supposed to work or operate, the answers were frequently unsatisfying, ranging somewhere between “Because it just does/is.” to “I don’t know.”. And “I don’t know” was sadly never followed up with “…but let’s find out”.
I have of course overcompensated with my own children on this to a fault.
As my eldest son said, “I’m afraid to ask you what time it is, because then you’ll want to teach me how to build a clock.”
6. Not being accepted and loved for who you are.
As a young child- My mother forcing me into social situations despite my extreme shyness. She always hated the fact I was shy.
As a teen- my grades were never good enough. Even if I had an A, it could always be a higher A. If my grades dropped to a low B, I would be drug tested and she would tell me she was surprised when I came back clean.
5. Remember that kids are NOT just shorter adults.
Adults not taking me seriously when I’d say I was full/needed a wee/didn’t feel well.
We don’t tell adults they have to eat if they’re full or to ‘just hold it’ if they need the loo.
4. Food is such a sensitive topic for so many families.
Being made to eat foods that I couldn’t stomach or which were in amounts that were too much for me to handle.
“You can’t leave the table until you finish everything on your plate.”
I hated wasting food, but I developed clever ways of sneaking unwanted food away and disposing of it without a trace.
Thankfully my parents didn’t pull the “There are starving people in Africa” routine, because my answer would have been “So give it to them.”
3. “Accidents happen” is a saying for a reason.
Getting chastised for falling down accidentally and getting scrapes.
Ended up hiding one because of fear and got a permanent scar from it not healing properly.
2. Kids aren’t stupid, they’re just still learning.
Being treated like an imbecile, while you were just lacking some context.
1. I try never to say “because I said so” to my kids. I don’t always stick to it, though!
being told “no” without any explanation.
that’s just going to make me do it to find out myself
My heart kind of hurts in a weird nostalgic sort of way reading these.
Let’s all do a better job putting ourselves in our kid’s shoes today, mmmkay?