“Yep, Those Are Bad Parents”: 35 Signs Of Bad Parenting, According To Members Of This Online Group

When nothing appears to be going your way and you’ve run out of patience, things can get into your head rather quickly and make you believe that your parenting abilities are subpar. It’s not uncommon to blame yourself for all sorts of things – however, if you catch yourself thinking that, chances are you still have time to improve.

Let’s not forget that most people are doing this whole parenting thing for the very first time, so cutting yourself some slack wouldn’t hurt anyone, but if there are evident signs that include over- or under-involvement, abuse, little to no discipline, or shaming, perhaps it’s time to ring a bell. So, if you want to educate yourself on what not to do when (or if) you decide to have a family, or if you’re simply curious about what others think, this Reddit user has got you covered.

What makes you think, ‘yep, those are sh***y parents?'” – this web user turned to one of Reddit’s most thought-provoking communities, asking its members to reveal signs that indicate that someone’s a bad parent. The thread managed to garner 1.9K upvotes as well as 2K comments discussing different traits and behaviors.

More info: Reddit


When you see their kids in beauty pageants.

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Heard a mother say to her little girl, “Shut up! I hate your voice.”

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Parents who won't let their sons do anything remotely feminine.

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When I hear fathers telling boys to stop crying like a girl. F**k you - men are allowed emotions too you know. I don't think a lot of people realise how damaging that kind of attitude is for the mental health of men in general.

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Parents who don't believe that their children are bullies.

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I stopped working retail at clothing stores because I couldn’t stand the way parents talk to, especially, young teenage girls. As someone who struggled with mental illness/eating disorders for a long time, there were so many times I wanted to intervene when a parent said their kid looked horrible in something they were really excited to try on.

I got my revenge this summer tho. There was a teenage girl showing her mom these cute overall shorts and begging the mom to let her get them (they were one of the more expensive items in the store) and her mom just kept saying no, you look ridiculous, you look like a toddler, you look like a train conductor, etc. I approached the girl and said they looked good as hell and if it makes her feel good she should get them and wear them always.

I hate when parents don’t realize how severely their negativity can impact their kids.

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Infanilising children. Kids are not stupid. They know what's up. Also parents who rule by fear, you can see it when the kids flinch too easy

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When they don't realize that their kid (no matter how small) is a full person with their own feelings and instincts and journeys in life and just dismiss anything about their kids that they don't understand or want to be true

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child is sweet smart and extremely hard working but has ADHD. The child does her best in school but does not do well because she just does not learn the way they teach. She is constantly grounded while siblings who get similar grades but have no learning disability are not. This girl is reading constantly and is great in English and history, basically rewrites her siblings english papers. But because she struggles in Maths and sciences she is seen as good as her siblings. This child is constantly put down and her dreams discouraged because she's not "good" enough in school to succeed.

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Parents who dismiss their child's emotions

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I was having lunch in McDonald's one time and heard a mother scold her very obese 4 year old to "finish his mayonnaise".

All judgement aside, I was eating there to. But maybe don't force a kid to eat mayonnaise.

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Your child's school has a costume day with the theme "dress as your favourite character from your favourite book". The other kids come as Winne the Pooh and Harry Potter and Anne of Green Gables.

Not your kid.

Your kid comes as Mr Grey from Fifty Shades of Grey.

You ARE a s****y parent.

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If your kid is dirty. And I don't just mean juice on their face or some grass stains on their clothes. I mean when the child has obviously not been bathed in days/weeks.

Also, if a child has bad manners and the parents do nothing to correct them. You are raising rude and inconsiderate people.


Went to a farm/corn maze last week and got to witness a man yelling at his ~5 or so year old child for crying. He made him sit in the corner of this barn and kept screaming "JUST STOP CRYING" every 2 minutes. He eventually got up with him, dragged him by his arm and screamed and sweared in his face less than an inch away. I don't know what this kid did or why he was so mad but f**k dude, yelling in their face like that especially in public is just disgusting

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About eight years ago I worked at a summer camp and had a nine year old girl in my group, she was tall for her age and skinny like a lot of 9 year old girls, really pretty girl. But she would stop herself from doing normal things like eating s'mores and say things alluding to the fact that at home her mother calls her fat (she's no where near it) and restricts her diet.

It broke my heart. She hadn't even hit puberty and was a charming girl and she was being bullied by her own mother. I spent my week coming up with an outline of things to report to CPS. Not that they could really take her away, but a paper trail is worth it if things ever got worse for the girl.

I really hope that girl has turned out alright. She didn't deserve that.

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When I hear them talk to elementary age kids like adults...

“Oh you have it tough!? Well f**k. I worked a s****y day and had to come home to you!”

My neighbors

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I used to work in a discount variety store. This unwashed, often barefoot woman would often come in with her kids. I thought she was nice enough, until one day her daughter innocently asks if she can buy a lolly, and the mum went OFF. Screamed at this 7 year old kid about how they can't afford it, and I'm not lying, she called her child a c**t. Screamed the word. In public. Her kids were always so well mannered, but they were usually dirty. I felt so bad for them.

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Parents who bring little kids to R rated or inappropriate movies. It's s****y on multiple levels.

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When they passively tell their kids "no" but don't actually do anything to stop it when the kid misbehaves. One of my neighbor's kids is like this, and I hate having her over because her mother just lets her wreak havoc.

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Your little badass kids acting up isn't cute, don't encourage the s**t.

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Seeing fizzy drinks in baby's or toddler's bottles makes my teeth itch. They don't need the sugar or the caffeine, or simply that much non milk fluid

Edit: there's a few comments asking what kind of drinks I mean. The incident that inspired this was an 8 monthish old with a cola type drink, ie high acid and high sugar, plus caffeine. Carbonated water is different but may have a weird pH so it's worth checking the label imho. Plus heavily gassed liquids are not ideal on anyone's stomach.

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Yesterday in the grocery store I was standing in the checkout line behind a man with 2 kids — looked like a 5 and 7 year old.

The kids were being goofballs, but not being wild by any means. The dad wasn’t giving them any instructions, except for over and over again leaning down in their faces and yelling, “Shut! Up!”

Every time he did, his little girl looked up at him with these sad puppy dog eyes. Broke my heart.

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Kids that don't respect service workers.

I work in a pub with a play area, the amount of times I've had to discipline children who are climbing on-top of the play equipment or children being voilent. The kids that talk back to me challenging the instructions I give them s**t me up the wall because you can just tell they are the kids that are spoilt to hell and they can do no wrong.

One time I had 3 different complaints about this pack of 13 year old boys in the play area, (breaking the 10 year old limit) because they where being voilent. I went in and gave them a warning, then later received a 4th complaint from a different table. I went in and tried to kick all the voilent children out but the mother came in and gave me the whole "You dare raise your voice at my children" and "you can't tell me how to raise my children". I informed her of the complaints I had received and her responce was "they are only making their cousins cry so it doesn't matter." I was flawed by her logic.


Today I took my son out to The Science Cube. A little 2 year old fell over right in front of me. His mom said, “that’s what happens to bad kids”. I wanted to strangle her, but I just glared at her as she walked away.

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When the kid smells like cigs. I understand you smoke but have enough decency to make sure your kids clothes don’t reek

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Parents getting their road rage on while their kids are in the car

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I was driving yesterday and this guy had a big car full of kids without seatbelts, this was on a motorway also not just some backroad


Kids running around wild in public.

My friends and I actually act as spotters for each other during cardio workouts now, in the sense of “spot and stop the m**on kid who thinks it’d be fun to try and run between your friend’s legs in mid-workout while their parents watch and do nothing”.

The dumbass apple doesn’t fall far from the dumbass tree.

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I rented the a basement bedroom from a woman who would scream at her kids “stop touching me!” When they would try to be affectionate with her. Good times.

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When they sound like a child or preteen themselves telling their kids what to do. Example: "Oh my God, shut uppppppuhhhh"

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Yelling at their kids when they misbehave/cry, usually to switch back to their smartphone immediately after

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When the kids treat the parents like s**t. That's usually a sign that the parents suck at the whole parenting part

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Obese children

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I've seen parents give their five to seven year olds beer. Wtf


Not paying attention to your kids and telling them their feelings and emotions are irrelevant because they're children. If you wanted somebody to boss around, hire a maid. F**k off

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