It's definitely hard being a kid and having to abide by arbitrary rules set by the adults around you. Reddit user u/Ok-Department5749 asked, "What should we stop teaching young children?" and the answers are pretty thought-provoking.
1. "That saying 'no' is rude. I wanna teach my kid it’s OK to refuse something or just say 'no' without any reason."
2. "Their worries and concerns are small or silly. Stop making them feel dumb or embarrassed for saying or doing something wrong. Most of all, that it’s normal for mom or dad to post those moments on their social media pages. Just stop."
4. "[We should teach them] that they're not obligated to be friends with people if they don't want to."
5. "That everyone is your friend. It’s not true. I had to tell my 9-year-old niece that sometimes people aren’t going to like her and it’s just how it is. This broke her heart because there’s a boy in her class who doesn’t like her and she’s been trying to win him over. She’s so sweet and I hated having to tell her that."
6. "That they’re more special than other kids. It’s a recipe for future entitled adults."
7. "To finish the food on your plate if you’re not still hungry. Note: don’t waste food. Save leftovers if you can."
8. "Stop making them share everything for the sake of sharing. Teach them to set healthy boundaries. Teach them about donations and charity. Teach them about sharing in moderation. Teach them why we share. But dammit, stop forcing them to do it all the time because 'that's what kids are supposed to do.'"
9. "To be ashamed when they're wrong. People should be thrilled to learn they're wrong because it's an opportunity to learn."
10. "That the majority opinion is always right, while the minority opinion is always wrong. This will just create a conformist who doesn't think for themselves but merely follows the popular opinion and kids themselves that it comes from their own thinking. Teach children to think for themselves and question things."
12. "To not give up on somebody you're romantically interested in. No means no, and while they might give you another chance later on, if you keep bugging them, it quickly turns into harassment."
13. "That if someone is picking on them, it means they like them. Gonna set them up for a lot of problems later in life."
14. "Cute names for their private parts. That just seems weird. If something was happening to them and they told someone that another person touched their 'flower' or something like that, whoever they tell might not necessarily know what that means. Normalize 'vagina,' 'penis,' 'vulva,' 'nipples,' etc."
15. "That sex and sexuality is something to be ashamed of. This isn't to suggest that we need to get graphic about the gritty details, but the topic itself ought to not be taboo, and I think honest, technical, but non-graphic answers are appropriate as soon as children are old enough to come to you and start asking you about sex..."
"If they grow up associating sex with shame, disgust, or something NEVER to be discussed, they're going to learn about it eventually but in secret and not always from reliable sources."
16. "We need to stop teaching everyone that girls absolutely need to have kids right after marriage, that they need to drop everything they're passionate about to care for them, and that they will feel empty without them. And that boys can't cry, that they have to constantly be the strong ones, women are inferior, and they have to protect them."
17. "That toys or colors are gender-specific. I feel like that limits children's imaginations and potential dreams."
19. "That you can’t disrespect adults but they can disrespect you."
20. "'What do you want to be when you grow up?' is such a common question, but feels like it implies that they are the job they do and that's the most important thing they will have or do."
21. And finally, "That adults know what they are doing and have it all figured out. It's more of the impression of it but they need to know that it's OK to not know what you're doing so they don't freak out toward the end of high school and after it."
Note: Responses have been edited for length and clarity.