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17 Toxic Things Parents Should Never, Ever Say To Their Children

"You don't have the right to privacy."

Everyone parents differently, but there are certain parenting methods I think we can all agree are a huge no-no (i.e. constantly using hurtful and/or disparaging words toward your own child).

Reddit user u/Few_Reading_4822 recently asked people to share "the most toxic thing a parent can say to a child," and anyone who has a kid — or plans to at some point — should definitely take notes. Here are some of the top-rated responses:

1. "'So you're saying that I'm a bad parent' in response to any form of help-seeking or constructive criticism was the worst for me."

2. "Saying 'okay' over and over again for years and years. Any accomplishment, any trial passed, any challenge won — just 'okay.'"


3. "Any time your mom talks about how much she weighed when she was your age. 'When I was your age, I weighed 98 pounds.'"


4. "'It's all in your head/you are just imagining it.' As it turned out, I wasn't imagining it and now I struggle to differentiate between what's real and what's not because I was led to believe I was imagining things constantly."


5. "In my experience, any time divorced parents say stuff like: 'Don't talk about that to your [other parent],' 'Tell your [other parent] this,' or 'Your [other parent] is trying to manipulate you.' It really screws with the kid's head."

6. "Constantly comparing you with your older siblings and giving you extremely different treatment. It makes you feel inferior to them and like no matter how much you try or do, it will never be enough."


7. "My mother told me when I was 8 that nobody likes a fat girl. I wasn't even really overweight. That and many other things she said and did made me develop an eating the age of 8."


8. "I gave up everything I loved for you."


9. "Talking shit about the other parent, then comparing you to them. 'You’re just like your father!'"

10. "I never wanted to have kids with your dad. He forced me to have you."


11. "Making fun of your kid for making a change in their life for the better. I was always anti-social and the complete opposite of athletic. When I began to try and work out to gain some muscle, I got teased by my parents. All that did was discourage me and make me want to quit."


12. "We had you so your brother would have someone to play with."


13. "I am not asking you to do this, it's an order!"

14. "You don't have the right to privacy."


15. "I think probably the most toxic thing a parent can say to a child is any form of, 'Nobody will ever love you as much as I do' or 'I'm the only one who really loves you.' It's the psychological equivalent of a bear trap. Its purpose isn't just to hurt the kid, but to keep them from ever leaving."


16. "'You’re being dramatic' or 'Some people have it a lot worse, so stop crying.'"


17. And finally, “As your mother, I have to love you, but sometimes I really don’t like you.”

What are some things your parents have said to you that qualify as "toxic"? Let us know in the comments for a chance to be featured in a BuzzFeed Community post.

Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.