“The Answer Is ‘Yes Sir’”: 40 House Rules That Weirded Out Residents And Guests Alike

A core part of growing up is learning that not only are people different, but so are their families, preferences and homes. This isn’t just a different sort of house or a preference for tea over coffee, some households truly do things their own way.

Someone asked “What's the most bizarre rule you've had to follow in someone else's house?” and people shared the weird things they have encountered. So get comfortable as you scroll through, upvote the strangest examples and feel free to share your own thoughts and experiences in the comments section below.


In my own house. Never allowed to close a bedroom door. No secrets would be kept then, if all the bedroom doors were open. But I'm an only child. Why was this the rule?

Because it was the rule in my mother's house where there were many children. Why couldn't they keep their doors closed ever?

Because it was the rule in the convent/orphanage where my grandmother was raised.

Then, when I had kids, at first, blindly, I imposed this rule. And I had to ask myself why my own kids, who have their own rooms and aren't sharing rooms with siblings couldn't close their own doors? Because it was rule in the 1920s when my grandmother was growing up in an orphanage in another country. So I reevaluated and my kids are allowed to close their doors and have privacy.

Image credits: RuggedHangnail


I once went to visit my boyfriend’s parents house on the weekend Halloween happened to fall. That Halloween afternoon, they straight up barricaded the windows and doors, turned out all their lights, and insisted I sit with them and only speak in whispers while trick or treaters happily skipped past their home, blissfully unaware of the psychopaths residing in the only house with porch lights turned off. They believed all those kids were actually possessed by Satan, and made us hide away all night like those sweet little children would rip us apart if they smelled us out. I broke up with that guy as soon as I got home. I don’t need people so staunchly anti-trick-or-treater in my life.

Image credits: DontDefineMeAsshole


“You’re our houseguest, but family dinners are for family only. Here’s your plate, you can have your dinners this week in the basement.”.

Image credits: CookDane6954


No pooping on the floor. which is a fine request but weird they had to call it out.

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It was an unspoken rule..no eating. A few friends spent the night at a former friend's house when we were teenagers. She offered us a small bowl of macaroni and cheese at about 4 p.m. We thought it was an after school snack, but that was it. Food wasnt mentioned again. My friends and I woke up in the middle of night,starving, so we went to the kitchen and the cabinets and refrigerator were locked.

Image credits: Spare_Refrigerator59


"No pringles, they catch fire too easily".

Image credits: RoseWould


Kids not allowed to bring any books with anthropomorphic characters into the house. We could play with Legos for hours, but were banned from bringing a Richard Scary big adventure book, or any material with talking animals, or animals wearing clothes

The mom didn't want 'her children growing up thinking that cats and dogs wore sweaters'. I hated that house.

Image credits: bugwrench


Had a friend who kept plastic Ziploc bags on his SNES controllers. While playing.

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I visited a friend at a lake house for 2 weeks in the summer and no one was allowed to get up before their dad. This f*****g guy would drink until 1-3am and not wake up till 11am and would throw a tantrum if anyone made noise before he was able to get up again and drag his a*s back to the real world. My friend's mom strictly enforced this the entire time I was there too. The things you look back on from your kid years man... that was just a hostage situation.

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At my best friend's growing up (middle- H.S), if we wanted to go do something together like go to the lighthouse or visit the old sugar mill ruins , we had to write a research paper first. We would give our papers to my friends mom and then she would decide if we could go or not.

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My friend's mom was adamant that we were NOT to fold a slice of pizza to be able to pick it up and eat it. The pizza was to remain flat, as we were not 'gluttonous beasts,'.

Image credits: jester29


Absolutely no petting the dog. This was at my friend's house when we were kids. No body was to pet, touch, scratch, or feed the Dog. I guess it was some kind of forbidden Dog or something. I dunno. I never understood it.

Image credits: Crotch-Monster


At a friend's house you were only allowed one sandwich at lunch but unlimited potato chips. So naturally this incentivized everyone to eat a ton of potato chips. For whatever reason the kids weren't allowed to make anything but deli meat sandwiches for lunch. I did manage to get the rule relaxed so that I was allowed to warm up canned soup on the stove for us 3 if I was over for lunch (I even made them grilled cheese sandwiches when she wasnt looking) and I was permitted a second sandwich so I didn't starve but it was very bizarre rule. I also hated cold Velveeta (the only cheese for putting on said sandwiches) and not a fan of potato chips.

Supposedly, the rule was to help the kids lose weight but I'm not buying it and the kids weren't impressed either. Why weren't teenagers allowed to use the stove? Why only deli meat sandwiches? Why unlimited potato chips? Why were fruit and vegetables not a side dish to the sandwich instead of potato chips. Why no tuna fish or pb&js? (Yes I snuck these into rotation as well because yuck on daily lunch meat sandwiches). So many questions. The 2 kids loved me staying over because they got to eat something different since my mom did speak with their step mom about allowing me more freedom or else I wouldn't be coming over anymore. Fortunately, stepmom wanted me there to entertain the kids and keep them out of her hair, so that threat was sufficient.

Personal opinion? Step mom was too lazy to cook, to meal plan or to even supervise the kids with the stove if it was "unsafe" (which I doubted, they were teenagers). A second sandwich would mean more bread and she needed a certain amount for the dad's lunches and couldn't be bothered to buy another loaf. No, they weren't too poor to afford food. They were wealthier than my family and we happily fed my friend real food when she stayed over. Such bizarre lunch rules.


Visited my besties family farm for a week. Once you left the house you could not return until dinner time. You can chill in the old farm house or farm garage. When you return to the house they live in, you strip down in the garage, put on a robe and fresh socks. You can then enter the house, drop all your clothes in the washing machine and to go straight to the shower. After your shower the robe and socks go into the washer. Once inside and showered then you are in for the night, we were adults not kids. This wasnt a livestock farm and nor did we work in the corn or soy fields.

Edit: The mom has OCD. Her entire life is cleaning or mowing. It was never about bugs as my friend hid this rule from me until we were in the garage.

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I was probably 9 or 10, a girl staying the day with my friend that was a boy. His dad came in and asked a question and I answered, "Yeah." Friend audibly sucked in a breath before his dad swung around and screamed, "How many times do I have to tell you, the answer is 'yes sir '?"

There's literally no way it could have been mistaken for my friend's voice. I was terrified until my mom picked me up. My friend was super apologetic, but even then I knew it wasn't his fault so I tried to make him feel better about it.

Not sure what happened to him but I can't imagine living in that level of terror every day of my childhood.

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Not me but my mom had an aunt that would put down newspaper to walk on if you visited her house. She also gave her kids enemas every Sunday night so they would be "clean" for school. .

Image credits: RanchNWrite


It was my house when my parents were still married.

No closed doors.

Bedroom, bathroom, closet, whatever. Only door fully closed was screen door going outside. Porch door, cracked at least 1-3 inches always, depending on weather. Taking a shower? Going #2? Parents intimate? Door is cracked open. I caught several whooping as a youngster and later as 12-13 year old for daring to close the door fully when in the bathroom. On rare occasion we actually had company over, rule enforced on them as well.

Image credits: Saltriverjohnny


Wearing jeans meant the only place I could sit was on one of the kitchen island stools. Kitchen chairs, sofas or chairs around the house, or any beds were no bueno. Also no shoes inside which was fine, but also had to remove socks so walking on cold hard flooring was super annoying. They didn't like that I brought my own slippers the next time I visited. Avoid going there now as much as I can.

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When I was little, my friends mom would not let us drink at the same time as eating because she said it was a choking hazard to mix liquid and solid???

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I stayed briefly with a friend whose mom didn’t allow the toilets to be flushed more than once a day unless you’d actually dropped a deuce, who only had tiny night lights in each room for illumination, didn’t believe in either heating or air conditioning, and stole playground sand from the park down the street to use in the cat box. She didn’t have furniture, other than her bed. My friend and I slept on moving pads in a bedroom, with no blankets or pillows. I remember eating two cheese sandwiches a day, and by sandwiches, I mean one slice of knockoff Kraft cheese between two slices of the cheapest white bread possible. She drove a very expensive car, and according to my friend, worked a very high paying job, and had no debt to speak of, thanks to all the child support she got from his dad after the divorce.

After two days of this, we both slipped out in the middle of the night, because she wouldn’t let us go anywhere during the day. I found some other friends to crash with, and my friend went to his dad’s house in another state. I found out years later that she eventually became a complete shut-in and hoarder, due to some substantial mental issues she’d been dealing with, even then. When she passed, her house was absolutely full of junk.


I'm an adult (mid 40s) and I was visiting a friend's house (also adult). She is married and her hubby is around 10 years older than me (she's a couple years younger than me). They have four children. As we live a fair way from each other, if I visit that means I'm staying over. So we always plan that I'm there for dinner and then we can have a few drinks and watch a movie, play cards, etc etc. Her husband has the most bizarre set of rules about alcohol.

If the children are still awake - no booze. For any of us. Now ok, whatever, maybe some people don't like drinking in front of their kids. But it's not so much that he cares that the kids **see** the alcohol being drank, it's that the adults must remain sober in case anything happens with the kids, if there's a medical episode (3 of the 4 are special needs) or whatever. I can understand saying that at least one adult must remain sober, but no, he insists that nobody can have even one drink while the kids are still awake.

Then it gets weirder - once the kids are asleep in bed, he's more than happy if all the adults (including the eldest kid who is late teens) all get absolutely rolling drunk. Nobody has to stay sober or even tipsy - he is happiest when refilling the glasses as many times as possible. The chances of a medical episode from one of the kids is just as likely when they're sleeping as it is when they're awake, so I really don't understand that rule at all. If he's ok with ALL adults getting smashed after the kiddies' bedtime, why is it so bad for a glass of wine with dinner? The kids know we drink, they see the alcohol and understand what it is, but we can't consume a drop if their eyes are still open.

And if he's away while I visit, his wife (my friend) MUST ring him and ask permission to have a glass or two after the kids have gone to bed; and even then, he insists that both of us are under strict orders to have no more than two drinks each "just in case" something happens with the kids. Even though if he's home, it's fine for all three of us to have 5 or 8 or more ..

I don't get it. (And to be fair, I don't visit that often).


Was in someone's house doing some work. I was not allowed to drink soda directly out of my can. The lady provided a glass to pour it into.


The guest toothbrush.

Image credits: Recoveringfrenchman


A friend's family was super strict on water use. If I took a shower (which wasn't that often, but I did occasionally after a sleepover) I had to turn off the water while I washed my hair and body, and only turn it back on when I rinsed. It wasn't the worst rule ever, but dang were those showers cold as her water heater wasn't the greatest.


My own house, I wasn't allowed to poop with people home. Like I had to hold it until my parents went shopping or something. It was f*****g terrible.


I, a fully grown adult, needed to ask permission to turn on any lights when I visited my mother at the apartment I grew up in. Not because they were worried about their electric bill or anything. No reason was actually given, I was just told off for turning on the kitchen light and was told I had to “ask permission” and apologise. Needless to say I have not visited since.


My old friends mom had a room in her house that NO ONE was allowed in. No significance to the room. It was the “viewing room.”

Edit: this room was all white like the majority of people with similar experiences. WHY WERE THEY ALWAYS WHITE?!

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When I was 8 I was best friends with the girl across the street. She lived with her mom and aunt. And literally, directly across the street from me.

I slept over with her on saturday and her aunt and mother FORCED me to go to church with them because "you aren't allowed to walk across the street by yourself we won't let you go home until after church".

It's worth noting that I was raised atheist by a father who hates religion with a burning passion because he was abused by religious superiors in his childhood (exactly what you're thinking yeah) and so I was raised to believe religion is the root of all evil, and I was an 8 year old with an anxiety disorder and autism on top of being raised to be horrifically terrified of anyone who believed in God.

So needless to say the second they dragged me into the church I had a breakdown because I was so scared and I got yelled at for "making us look bad" by my friend's aunt and they yelled at my parents for my behavior when they finally brought me home.

My friend got really mad at me for not just toughing it out. And she was super angry with me when I stopped hanging out with her because of it.


When my friends dad went into his room and closed the door you could not disturb him for any reason whatsoever and we had to lower the volume on the TV, etc.

Maybe if we were children it'd be understandable but I was 22 at the time and my friend was 24 living at home.


My best friends had a “girl’s bathroom” and a “boy’s bathroom”. It was a two bath house. The boy’s bathroom was in the parents’ bedroom.

I was there for a sleepover and had to pee in the middle of the night. I walked around for about 20 minutes trying to figure out what to do. I almost went outside, but I worried they had an alarm. I ended up peeing in my pj’s. I hid them behind the toilet in the girl’s bathroom.

I still don’t know why I just didn’t pee in the girl’s bath or wake up my buddies.

It was weird.


Nothing too strange, but my friends house we were always at we were NOT allowed upstairs except for rare occasions. we had to stay in the basement. granted the basement had its own entrance, bathroom, kitchen, tvs, pool table, couches.


Had a friend growing up whose mother ran an in home day care. We weren’t allowed to talk during meals. Imagine a handful of 3-6 year olds trying to eat Mac and cheese with sliced hot dogs in silence.


Women were not allowed to wear pants or shorts at my uncle's house. Anytime my family visited, both mom and I had to wear a skirt or dress past the knees. Also no open-toe shoes, no make-up.


Back in the ‘50s my friend’s mom would check every kid coming in for head lice. .


I volunteered at an organic farm where it was forbidden to use toilet paper. Some volunteers used a personal rag they would wash after they wiped. I opted to improvise a portable bidet using a plastic bottle and made sure to wash my hands thoroughly afterwards all the time.


You could watch tv, pretty much anything, except King of the Hill. His mom “caught” us watching it (it came on after The Simpson) and her awful tone and angered look is something I will never forget. Honestly, great time otherwise.


Years ago a friend of mine started dating this girl and if you went to his place (note: she didn't live there) she insisted that you had to sit down to pee. She would listen at the door to make sure you weren't standing.

It was quite the yelling match afterwards.


I had a roommate with a cat that just absolutely adored me. Every time I woke up in the morning to make breakfast, it would harass me for belly rubs, and if I didn't give it attention, it would bite my ankles. Precious little creature. Well, my roommate got jealous of this situation and demanded that I not interact with this cat anymore because they wanted themselves to be the cat's favorite human. I just want to emphasize that this cat loved me so much and would have no idea why I'd suddenly be neglecting it.


If you pee, you can use 3 squares of toilet paper. If you poop, you get 10. I found it sooo weird. My family didn’t limit our toilet paper usage.


No talking.