Skip To Content
  • Viral badge
  • lol badge

27 Things Parents Used To Do That Will Make You Seriously Wonder How Your Generation Survived

Times have definitely changed.

We asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us what their parents did that today's parents would never get away with and the responses were at once hilarious and horrifying:

1. "My dad used to sit us on his lap while he drove on the freeway, then close his eyes and have us tell him where to go."


2. "My parents sent me to the store to buy their cigarettes."


—Ang Bee, Facebook

3. "We woke up late for school one morning, and my dad was using the car, so my mom put me in a taxi. I was in kindergarten."


4. "My parents let us put a mattress on the ground and jump off the roof."


5. "My mom gave me cough syrup so I would sleep, calling it my 'night-night juice.'"


6. "My parents would drop me and my friends off at the movie theater when I was 7, give us a few bucks for a movie, and then just leave us for a few hours."

Warner Bros.

7. "My friend's mom would put the back seats in her SUV down and let us roll around while she made sharp turns."


—Angela Lollie, Facebook

8. "My dad took me into smoky bars and had me play bartender during work parties...when I was 5."


9. "My dad invented a game called 'crack the coconut' for when my siblings were fighting. He'd have them crawl at each other as fast as they could until they hit their heads together. According to him, it was great for conflict resolution."


10. "I set my friend's oven on fire multiple times because her parents let us bake unsupervised."


11. "I used to suck my thumb, so my dad would put hot sauce on my thumb so I would stop. I did."

12. "Got to start up my mom's car every morning and drive it around the block to warm it 10 years old."

13. "My brothers were given test tubes of mercury to play with and gunpowder to make their own fireworks."


14. "My dad poured a little wine in my water at restaurants starting when I was 5 years old. I preferred whites over reds."

15. "My 'seat belt' was my mom's arm slamming me across the chest in the front seat when she came to a quick stop."


—Brenda McMurry Gideon, Facebook

16. "They let us cross a state highway to walk to school."

17. "My dad wore my sister in a baby backpack while he rode a Jet Ski."


18. "In my grandparents' car, we would stand on the center armrest and hang out of the sunroof."


19. "Once I had a toothache so my dad gave me whiskey and told me to swish it around in my mouth. He never told me to spit it back out, though, so I swallowed it instead."


20. "They would let us save milk cartons to build 'cities' in our backyard, then let us use matches to set them on fire and BURN THEM DOWN."

21. "My mom allowed me to try coffee at 9 years old, thinking that I would hate it. But it was love at first sip, so she allowed me to have a cup every Sunday after church."

22. "To make a car seat, my dad cut a milk crate in half, added a cushion, and tied me into it with a piece of rope."

23. "I had my first Coca-Cola in my baby bottle."


—Lauren Hunt, Facebook

24. "When someone knocked on the front door, we were allowed to just yell, 'come in!' without knowing who it was."


25. "When I was learning to ride my bike, my dad duct-taped my feet to the pedals, saying 'if you stop, you're going to fall,' then just sent me on my way."

26. "My mom used to leave me alone in the apartment as an infant while she walked the dog around the block, saying, 'Well, it's not like you could go anywhere.'"


27. "When I was an infant, we once stayed in a hotel that didn't have a crib, so my parents made one for me...out of pillows. They woke up to find my head wedged between the pillows, and instead of checking if I was alive, my mom took a picture."

Want to be featured on BuzzFeed? Follow the BuzzFeed Community on Facebook and Twitter.

Some responses were edited for length and clarity.