Tiny humans don’t have any real sense of self-preservation. In fact, their baby brains all seem to have the opposite goal: it’s like they want to unalive themselves in weird and horrific ways. So, because you can’t trust kids not to lick wall outlets, the vital round-the-clock watch to keep these bouncy barf goblins safe from harm can get a little overwhelming. Unfortunately, as these Redditors discovered, tired parents inevitably make mistakes…
1. A Big Mist-ake
My son is only eight months old, and I’ve already made a big mistake. First, you should know that our house is about 100 years old and still has a boiler and radiators to provide heat. Since the house has settled, not all of the radiator pipes are angled as they should be. This can cause cold air to get trapped in the pipe, preventing certain radiators from heating up.
The way to fix this is to remove the pressure regulator from the end of the radiator until steam comes out. This can take up to 10 minutes, depending on the distance between the radiator and the boiler and how long the boiler has been running.
One day, the radiator in my son’s room wasn’t warming. It was nighttime and cold as heck outside, so I snuck into his room and unscrewed the regulator. Not wanting to wake him, I then snuck back out, planning to return momentarily to put the regulator back on.
Well, I forgot—for about half an hour. I was doing who-knows-what downstairs when all of a sudden, I started wondering about the high-pitched whistling noise coming from upstairs. I quickly realized my mistake and dashed to my son’s room, only to find a cloud of steam so dense that I couldn’t see anything.
I felt my way to his crib and gave him the scare of his very short life as I jerked him up out of his deep sleep and ran out of the room. He was no worse for wear, just generally damp from the ridiculous amount of water in the air.
After tending to him, I had to manually shut off the boiler and wait for the radiator to cool down before I could put the regulator back on. Then I towel-dried everything in his room, even the walls and ceiling.
2. It’s Fasten-ating, Really
I’m not a parent, but once while driving a 5-year-old around, he unbuckled his seat belt and climbed out of the window in the middle of the road. I noticed when his body was dangling halfway out of the car, and I was barely able to grab him by the leg and pull him back in.
I swear in that moment my heart stopped. You avert your eyes for a split second, and these kids find a way to lemming themselves.
3. Ready, Ike?
In 1995, while my wife was seven months pregnant with our first, she punched me awake at 3am crying one night because…well, hormones. She was despairing because she thought we couldn’t be trusted with a baby, we’d hurt it. When I told her that we’d be fine, she said, "You’re a freaking klutz, you’ll drop the baby down the stairs".
Years later, in 2003, I was carrying our eight-month-old third child down the stairs, and one of the other kids had left one of those fat crayons on like the second step down. I stepped on the crayon, my foot rolled straight forward, and I landed hard on my butt. The poor baby got dropped and landed two steps down from me.
I had landed oddly, with my left leg sort of tucked backward (I ended up with a sprained knee from it), so I quickly tried to free my leg so I could reach down to grab my daughter. But my leg unexpectedly popped forward...and I managed to kick my daughter down another five steps.
For the record, she was scared as heck but completely unharmed. She stopped crying within 10 minutes and went on as if nothing had happened.
4. A Near Train Wreck
Once, while watching my three-year-old godson, we went to a local model train store he loved. Everything went great, and he had a lot of fun. As we walked back to the car, he began tugging at my hand and said, "I want to run!" We’d made it past the last car in the lot except ours; there were no visible moving cars ahead of us, and it looked like absolutely clear, safe sailing back to our parked car.
So, I let go of his hand and said, "Go ahead! Run!" It all seems so predictable now. He ran about five feet forward into the completely empty parking lot, toward our car, then did a 180-degree turn with a speed and agility that would make a hummingbird proud, and took off back the way we came—back into the busy part of the parking lot.
Trust me when I tell you that it is simply not possible for a 185-pound adult to change directions that quickly. Fortunately, I still had the presence of mind to yell "stop" at the top of my lungs. He stopped himself just short of a big SUV with its backup lights on. I think the driver may have seen him, but I really don’t know.
Anyway, here’s what I learned about small kids: Just because traveling in a certain direction is obvious and natural to you does not mean your toddler thinks the same thing. All directions of travel for them are "on the table". Toddlers can maneuver much more quickly than you can. You need to be holding your toddler’s hand firmly any place there are cars—even cars that could never, ever be a source of danger. Because they still can be.
5. Those Darn(ing) Needles…
Grandma was visiting and doing some knitting. No sooner had the request, "Please make sure your (three-year-old) grandson can’t get a hold of one of those", come out of my mouth that I saw him racing around the sofa brandishing a knitting needle.
Time went into slow motion. I couldn’t see him, and my legs, strangely, wouldn’t move fast enough. There was an odd silence. Then the crying. But it was a cry I had not heard before: It was gargled somehow. Rounding the sofa, I found a scene of horror.
My son was sprawled on the ground. My brain first registered the blood and then the bloody knitting needle. I turned him over, and blood began spurting from his neck and hit the coffee table. I grabbed a PJ top and applied pressure. I screamed at Grandma to call 9-1-1. Grandma forgot how to use "this crazy telephone". My husband ran in from the garden.
My memory of what happened next is a blur: an ambulance, attendants, a neck brace, a gurney, sirens, and the emergency room. There were ultrasounds, physical checks, stitches, monitors, and finally, an overnight stay in the hospital for observation. All was well.
Arriving home, Grandma said she thought we "overreacted". Much later, she was heard wondering aloud about why she is not allowed to babysit.
6. Heads Up, Kid
When my brother was about three, my dad was playing that game where you lift your kid above your head repeatedly over and over again. He didn’t realize that there was a ceiling fan directly above him, and he accidentally put my brother’s head into a very fast-moving ceiling fan. This resulted in a bunch of stitches and a very, very guilty father.
7. Belly Up
My kiddo was/is a tummy sleeper through and through. I kept telling the doctor she wouldn’t sleep on her back, but he just kept telling us that she would pass if she slept on her belly. So, I had a sleep-deprived, miserable crying child, and I was sleep deprived and miserable from holding her while she took three naps a day.
We couldn’t co-sleep, so something had to give. If we put her on her belly, she slept like a champ, so that’s what we did at night. Everything was great, though I felt guilty. Until one morning, I went to wake her up, and she didn’t move when I called her name.
She didn’t move when I laid a hand on her back. She was stiff when I yanked her out of bed and proceeded to run screaming throughout the house, "She’s gone, she’s gone. Oh, my god, she’s gone!" I didn’t know whether to jump in the car and go to the hospital two seconds away or call 9-1-1, so I was frantically dancing back and forth in the front yard.
My panicked husband finally yelled, "STOP FOR A SECOND!" He walked over and kissed our super quiet, very confused, very alive child. I told you—she slept like a champ on her belly.
8. Glub, Glub
I was giving my newborn son his first bath. I had him facedown over my arm, lowered into the water while I washed his back, not realizing I had completely submerged his face. He was probably under for about 10–15 seconds before I realized he was a bit quiet and the reason why. I still feel sick when I think that he could have drowned in my arms.
9. Kids Can Be Such A Pane
We were renting a two-story house when my son was about two years old. All of the bedrooms were upstairs, and the windows which led out to an overhang were the floor-to-ceiling type and opened on the bottom. I thought I was being safe by putting child-proof locks on the kids’ bedroom windows.
One day, I was downstairs while my son was napping and a neighbor came over screaming, "There’s a baby on your roof!" My son had gone into my bedroom and climbed out a window that wasn’t locked.
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10. A Turn For The Worse
I was with my uncle leaving Walmart, when the unthinkable happened. I was sitting in the backseat with his son, who I’d say was around three or four at the time. Well, when he made a big hard turn, I realized that there was this strong draft of wind and my window wasn’t down, but out of the corner of my eye, I could see a more spacious view of everything outside. Then it hit me: My little cousin unbuckled his seat belt and cracked his door open but didn’t shut it.
So, as my uncle was turning, I felt the air, looked and saw the door swing wide open, and almost witnessed my little cousin FLY out the door. MY. GOD. I’ve never reacted so fast in my life. I leaned over and grabbed my cousin by his FOOT just as he started to slide out, with this car door swinging wide open. And my uncle didn’t even know it...
I sometimes wonder what would’ve happened if I wasn’t sitting in that backseat. Something terrible for sure.
11. A Bundle Of Holiday Joy
I caught my 14-month-old eating a glass Christmas bulb. I went over and knocked it out of her hand. Then I fish-hooked around in her mouth. I could feel the glass, but it was too fine to remove. I yelled for my husband to hold down our daughter while I waterboarded her at the kitchen sink. He shot me a curious look, but he isn’t really one to pass up a good time.
Thankfully, it worked.
12. Showered With Concern
My mum got into the shower with her newborn baby girl (my now four-year-old sister), who was about six months old at the time. She tripped on the step into the bathroom and proceeded to throw the baby into the tiled shower like a ragdoll. She is fine now, though…I think.
13. Baby Still On Board
I was driving to work one winter morning in South Dakota. It was very cold out. My mind was elsewhere, and as I was turning into the parking lot, I heard my four-month-old daughter cough in the backseat. I had forgotten she was in the car and had forgotten to drop her off at daycare.
I was this close to parking the car, going into the office, and leaving her there in the midst of a South Dakota winter. She wouldn’t have made it to lunch. It still gives me the creeps 12 years later.
14. Sink Or Swim
I don’t have kids, but this happened to me as a babysitter, and it was the most terrifying moment of my life. During the summer, the parents would drop me off with the kids at a swim club where they had a membership. The oldest kid was maybe seven, and the youngest was three. Since the youngest couldn’t swim yet, she had those inflatable arm floaty things to wear.
Well, at the end of the day, I was packing everything up to get ready to leave. I took the girl’s arm floaties off, turned to put them in the bag, turned back around, and she was gone. It had been no more than 15 seconds with my back turned. Apparently, she decided to jump back into the pool for one last swim.
There is nothing quite as heart-attack inducing as when I looked in the shallow end of the pool, and there she was, just standing on the bottom with this shocked look on her face since she had expected to float. I jumped right in and pulled her out. Again, she was only out of sight for maybe 15 seconds, so no harm was done. But still, scary as heck.
15. Eat, Pray, Live
My sister took care of me a lot when I was a baby. One day, I was playing in the laundry room and happened to get a hold of one of the silica packets from a shoe box. According to my sister, I somehow got it open and ate half the packet while she was in her room. After she found out, she was terrified and couldn’t tell my parents.
So, she didn’t and just watched me closely for the rest of the day, seeing if I did anything weird. Happy to say I didn’t croak.
16. Nothing To Sneeze At
Accidents absolutely can and DO happen to normal, responsible people. When my son was four months old, his dad was carrying him downstairs. His dad sneezed, lost his footing, and slid halfway down the stairs on his butt. In the meantime, my son, swaddled tightly in a blanket and sound asleep, shot out of his arms like a football and landed head-first on the wood landing of the stairs.
He ended up in PICU with a hematoma and two fractures on his skull. After a couple of weeks of monitoring and healing, he was fine and is fine to this day, although I worry about early head trauma affecting him later in life. But so far, so good! His dad, on the other hand, still tears up when he thinks or talks about it.
17. They Say Bad Things Come In Threes…
The best story happened to me. I was in my walker, and my dad left the garage door open. Bam! Down a flight of concrete stairs. An ambulance and fire truck comes, and I am off to the hospital. Well, my parents were in the middle of cooking dinner when that happened.
So, Grandma came over to finish dinner. She started an oil fire and caught the house on fire, which took out about a 1/3 of the house. Bam! Same fire truck and ambulance. Then, after they left, my grandma had a heart attack, and you guessed it: the same fire truck and ambulance came back—three trips to my house in less than five hours.
PS: My grandma made it. Well, she is gone now, but she made it through the heart attack.
18. An Accident Waiting To Happen
I’m a single mom. I had this fake fireplace in the first place we lived, and I didn’t know I had to bolt it to the wall. I figured it was heavy enough that it would be fine. That turned out to be a deadly mistake. My two-year-old son threw a ball, and it went on top of the fireplace, but as he climbed up to get it, the whole thing fell over.
The only thing that saved his life was the bean bag chair we had set in front for storytime. The fireplace weighed 90 kg (200 lbs) or more. When it tilted, he managed to get into the nook part, so he wasn’t getting completely crushed, and the chair kept the weight off of him. I had to get neighbors to help me lift it up. That was the scariest moment so far.
The closest my son has ever come to danger was with my mom. We were loading purchases into the back of the car outside a department store. He was a little over a year old and was strapped into the seat of the shopping cart. I went around to turn on the car and get the AC going. My mom let go of the shopping cart to put her purse in and close the trunk.
I stood up to see my son in the shopping cart, rolling at a pretty good clip down the hill, through the parking lot toward the four-lane highway. He saw me looking, lifted a hand, and did that cute bending-your-fingers wave kids do. You have never seen two women take off running so fast.
He is a teenager now, and anytime my mom criticizes me, I remind her of the time she sent him careening toward traffic.
20. A Small Window Of Opportunity
It was moving day, and I hadn’t been able to get out to buy the locks for the window. My two-year-old had pushed a box over to the window, opened it, and was hanging half out. There was no roof, just a 15-foot drop to the driveway. Luckily, a neighbor took the approach of yelling directly at my son to get back in the house rather than coming to tell us.
In the time it may have taken us to get upstairs, he easily could have fallen. Terrifying. I went to Home Depot right away and baby-proofed the heck out of our new place.
21. Moms Know Best
I tripped with my one-month-old, and her head hit a wall. Hard. I called 9-1-1. The operator said, "Is that her screaming in the background? Yes? Then she’s probably okay". GET ME AN AMBULANCE ANYWAY. The EMT said, "Oh, she looks like she’ll be fine. You probably don’t need to go to the hospital". TAKE US TO THE HOSPITAL ANYWAY.
The nurse said, "She looks fine. You can probably just go home". GET ME A DOCTOR ANYWAY. The doctor said, "She’s fine. She probably doesn’t need a CT Scan". GIVE HER A CT SCAN ANYWAY. The CT scan doctor said, "Oh, she has a fractured skull. We will need to admit her".
Parents may not be able to keep their kids out of harm’s way 100% of the time, but people need to listen to them when they know something is wrong with their kid.
22. Jesus, Take The Wheel
Two weeks ago, I did something that nearly cost me my life. I was driving 160 km/h (99 mph) with my two-year-old son sleeping in the backseat. I was tired, but I thought I could just keep driving. Wrong. I nodded off for just one second, but the car started going to the right, onto the emergency lane.
It scared the heck out of me. I stopped at the first gas station and closed my eyes for half an hour. I got home safely after that. I promised myself and my son that I would never keep driving when tired. It’s better to take a break and continue later.
23. It Didn’t Really Click
When I was only six months old, my mom was running errands and had me in the car seat in the back of the Jeep Wrangler we had. She buckled me into my car seat but was absent-minded/distracted and forgot to strap the car seat to the backseat.
She was driving along and took a turn too fast, and I shifted from right-side up on the passenger side to upside down in between the back of the driver’s seat and the back seat driver’s side. She noticed right away, pulled over to get me right-side up again, and noticed that my soft spot was about an inch from a protruding bolt. I don’t think she ever forgot to secure the car seat again after that...
24. Diving Intervention
I’m not a parent, but I’m ten years older than my sister. She got really good at climbing chairs at around two years old and managed to fall head-first off a chair. Fortunately, I saw it happen and reacted out of instinct and dove across the kitchen.
I didn't fully catching her but I slowed her down, and she landed on my hands, which is better than tile. I also managed to throw my soda across the kitchen counter. I don’t think I’ve ever reacted so fast in my life.
25. She’s Lucky She Didn’t Fall And Break Her Back
My wife was just walking along a normal path when she tripped on a crack and threw our eldest (six months old at the time) onto the concrete path. It was one of the worst moments of our lives. He was fine: not even a scratch. A few weeks ago (now at 11 years old), he smashed his teeth doing something stupid and faceplanted into concrete. It’s like the kid wants to eat concrete.
His teeth have been reconstructed. However, even weeks later, I still don’t think I am over the stress of THAT day. Our kids permanently hurting their teeth has long been one of my wife’s biggest parental phobias. The day itself was a nasty mix of horror, fear for his safety/future/physical well-being, and all sorts of horrible "If only I had"… constant replays.
Any time your kid does something major like that, it hits hard—even if they themselves just shrug it off.
26. She Nearly Croaked
I’ll start this by saying I am terrified of frogs. Absolutely terrified! My husband knows this and always terrorizes me with them. So, on this fateful day, I was holding our two-week-old son when he walked in and dropped a frog down my top. Of course, my first reaction was to jump up and throw whatever was in my hands across the room.
That was how my son had his first flying lesson. He turned out fine; not a scratch on him.
27. Good To The Last Drop
When my daughter was seven weeks old, I was returning from a local coffee shop with drinks for my husband and me. I was pushing our daughter in her infant car seat atop a stroller that came with it. I set the car seat down on our couch and unbuckled her, then turned to take off my shoes and set down the drinks. That's when disaster struck.
In the blink of an eye, and before I could get to her, the seat tipped off the couch, and my baby fell face-first onto the hardwood floor with a sickening thud. She began to scream and cry, and I was doing the same. I remember yelling, "Oh, my god! My baby! My baby!" We ended up rushing her to the local children’s hospital, where she received dozens of x-rays and ended up having to spend the night to monitor her.
She had a fractured eye socket that healed on its own. I was an absolute mess, and four years later, I have not really forgiven myself for being so careless.
28. Chumming Around
I don’t have children, but my father almost offed me once. We were at Sea World when I was about two, and I wanted a better view of "Shamu". This was 25 years ago, and safety precautions weren’t quite what they are now. My dad lifted me up high enough to see the whale over the edge, and it started swimming toward me.
Alarms started going off, and one of the workers started sprinting to my dad. The guy proceeded to snatch me from my father, who was getting ready to physically harm the person who just tore his kid from his arms. Then the man explained that was how they fed the whale. So, my dad almost fed me to a whale and then came close to punching the guy that stopped him.
29. A Shocking Sight
I had an extension cable outside so I could vacuum my car. I unplugged the vacuum and took it inside. I returned to start dealing with the extension cord, which was still plugged into the socket, to find my three-year-old boy dunking it in the bucket of water I had used to wash the car. I have no idea how he didn’t explode.
30. Snack Attack
One night in the early 90s, my parents were cooking popcorn—not popcorn in a microwave, like civilized human beings, but popcorn on the stove, like savages. As we all learned from Scream, this type of popcorn has a tendency to catch on fire. So, it did just that. We looked up, and suddenly there were flames rising up from our delicious evening snack.
My sister freaked out a little. She was crying and screaming and just generally losing it, as six-year-olds tend to do after getting fire-safety education in school. My dad calmly walked over to the stove and put a lid on the pan. My dad was all, "Don’t worry, it’s out now". But my sister was still freaking out and not convinced.
I mean, the man didn’t even put water on it or break out the fire extinguisher or anything! But my dad insisted it was fine and told her to come over and look at the pan. She hesitantly walked over. Dad put the pan right under her face so she could see the fire was gone. He removed the lid with a flourish like he was revealing the exquisite main entrée to a five-course meal…
And the fire hadn’t been smothered yet. The flames re-explode right in my sister’s face, singeing her eyebrows right off. She still has some trust issues....
31. An Emotional Stroller Coaster
I was taking my then two-year-old son to the park, along with his baby sister, who was in the pram. This was the first time I had taken them both out on my own, so she must have been just a couple of weeks old. My son fell over, and I just let go of the pram to pick him up.
Well, obviously, the pram rolled away, but I luckily noticed in time to catch up to it. I. Felt. Awful.
32. Little Boy Blues
I have a horrible story that nearly ended in tragedy. One night, when my son was about three, I left him in the bedroom watching Blue’s Clues until he fell asleep. It was about 9pm , but he had napped all day, so he wasn’t tired. I had my stepmother over, and we were having a drink in the kitchen, just yammering about the day and whatnot. About 30 minutes later, I went to check on him, and...he was gone. Not in the bedroom, not in the kitchen, not anywhere.
I started looking under beds, frantically searching the basement, thinking he might be hiding or something. He. Wasn’t. Anywhere. At. All. As I passed by the front door, I noticed it was open a bit. His coat was hanging up, but his shoes were gone. What the HECK?! It was February in Northern Alberta, so it was about -37 degrees and fricken COLD outside at 10pm.
I was thinking, "Nononononono", as I grabbed my coat and freaking dashed out of the house. I was screaming his name frantically, running up and down the street, thinking I was going to see a car pulling over and his body pasted on the road. Then, I heard my stepmom yell, and she waved me over about a block up. I braced myself for the worst.
It turned out he left the house, walked down the street, and crossed the street. Some old guy almost nailed him with his van. He freaked out and took him to the nearest house, about two blocks from us. I went inside, crying and freaking out, and as I walked into this stranger’s house, some officers arrived. I let my stepmom deal with them while I attempted to grab my kid, but he was in his terrible threes, and there were two other kids there watching TV with him.
He threw the freaking MONSTER of fits as I tried to get his coat on—I mean, full tantrum, kicking and yelling, the works. So, here I was, dragging this screaming kid out of a stranger’s house at 10pm, smelling like booze, trying to explain to the officers what had happened. They let us go with no issues (thank heavens), and we went home. We never mentioned it to anyone. EVER.
33. But Orange You Glad Nothing Bad Happened?
This is not something my parents did, but something I did to my little sister when I was about two and a half, and she was roughly six months old. In my defense, I was trying to be nice. The rationale was as follows: I was apparently very fond of oranges. I would eat oranges whenever I could get my hands on them. I naturally thought my little sister would also like oranges.
In my infantile mind, I then reasoned it would be a good idea to stuff her mouth with as many orange slices as possible so she could enjoy all that citrusy goodness. The result of all this was a six-month-old girl rolling around on the floor, unable to breathe, until a screaming mother ran into the room and got them all out.
34. Slip And Slide
When my oldest son was two years old, we went to a wedding in January. As we were leaving, there was a big patch of ice right at the bottom of the stairs leading out. My son had fallen asleep, and I was cradling him in my arms so as not to wake him. I got to the bottom of the stairs, and my fancy dress shoes slid out from under me on the ice.
My legs flew back behind me. I yanked my son toward me and twisted so my shoulder hit the ground. I then slid across the giant patch of ice while holding him and slammed face-first into the tire of a car waiting near the entrance. My son’s head was inches from the protruding metal bits of the rim. The little rascal didn’t even wake up, but I was freaking hamburger meat.
35. This Sounds Like A Total Drag
My mom has nearly ended my life a couple of times. When I was a kid, my uncle got me this awesome army surplus backpack. I thought I looked really cool wearing it, but the downside to the backpack was that it had these really long drawstrings.
One morning before school, I awoke to find my little brother had used all of my Post-it notes, so clearly, we needed to fight about it. It was kinda dumb, but we were kids, and that’s kinda what we did. Only, on that day our fight set the stage for disaster. The whole event had put everyone in a bad mood, and I rode to school in the backseat, not talking to anyone.
I got out of the car and slammed the door behind me. I took two steps before I was suddenly no longer able to walk forward anymore. I turned around and came to a horrifying realization: the extra long drawstrings from my awesome new backpack were closed in the car door behind me. My mother, not realizing this and still angry from the incident that morning, floored it.
The next thing I knew, I was on the asphalt kicking the wheels of the car, trying not to get run over. You know that feeling in gym class where you slide down a rope too fast, and your hands burn like crazy? Now, imagine that the rope is made of black top, and instead of gripping it with your hands, you’re using your whole body. My mom made it the length of the school parking lot before the number of cars honking their horns made her stop to see what was happening.
After she stopped, I rolled out of the backpack, covered in blood and dirt. I was completely in shock, so I couldn’t feel any pain yet; I remember the first thing that popped into my head was that I was wearing my favorite Mighty Ducks shirt, and this had totally ruined it. I totally didn’t realize the gravity of the situation until everyone in the parking lot ran up to me to see if I was okay, and the pain started to set in...
36. Risky Business
This happened to a co-worker a few years ago. She loaded the baby (about one year old or so) in the car seat and headed to work. She drove to work but forgot to stop at the daycare to drop off the kid on the way. Fast forward to two hours later, the daycare teacher called to ask if her kid was sick because she hadn’t called to say he was staying home.
My co-worker dropped everything and raced out to the parking lot to find her kid sleeping in the car seat in the car. Luckily, it was winter and not dangerously hot or cold, so the kid was okay.
37. Landing In Deep Water
One day, my cousin and I decided to go to a local beach with her baby and my younger sister. Her baby was maybe a year old, so when we went in the water, she carried him. We started walking out into the deeper part of the lake but stopped when the water got just below chest deep. I was maybe 16 at the time and about 5’8". Out of nowhere, she decided she was going to toss me her tiny little son.
I wasn’t paying attention but luckily saw the poor thing soaring through the air out of the corner of my eye. I turned and went to reach for him, but he had already fallen under the water. I plunged my hands into the murky water and, by some miracle, grabbed one of his arms and yanked him up. He was completely unscathed; he didn’t even take in any water.
Needless to say, we were pretty quick to get out of the water and never talked about that incident ever again. And that’s why I will never take a child near any body of water.
38. It Was A Knock Out Of The Park
I’m 10 years older than my youngest brother, so I’m almost like a second mother to him. When I was 13, I took him (three) and my other younger brother (six) to the park to give my mom a break for the afternoon. I was swinging the six-year-old on the tire swing, and the three-year-old decided he wanted to try. I was wary, but he convinced me he could hang on.
He couldn’t. He let go, and he flew off that dang swing and smacked his head HARD on the metal support. It knocked him out cold, and when he came to, he was doing that silent scream thing kids do when they’re really freaked out. I called my mom on the phone and met her at the hospital, which was a block away. I gave him a minor concussion and myself a heart attack.
39. Crash Cart
I was loading my son into my truck at Costco a few months ago. He was sitting in the cart. I normally park at the end of the parking lot because I do not like door dings, the cart/stroller normally takes up a lot of room, and I do not want to ding anyone else’s car, either. Well, anyway, he was sitting there singing and just being merry. He was completely oblivious to the mortal peril he was about to encounter.
Let me set the scene: I parked almost at the very end of the Costco parking lot in a diagonal spot. There were three spots between us and the end of the lot planter. My son was in his cart seat by the passenger side of my truck’s rear seats, and the passenger rear door was open. I was at the tailgate loading some stuff into the bed of the truck. My wife had gotten into the front seat to put his diaper bag away.
Then, out of nowhere, a large Suburban came whipping around the front of my truck to turn around…because going over three extra spots and doing it on the road was just too much of a hassle. The Suburban actually hit my rear door, and if my wife hadn’t been leaning into the front seat with the front door closed on her legs, the truck would have hit her door, too.
Well, the door that the Suburban hit swung into the cart my son was sitting in, and it launched the cart into the path of a huge Ford F350 coming up the row. He managed to stop. Then, the Suburban spun tires to get the heck out of there, hit-and-run style. I grabbed my son, who was screaming at that point. The driver of the F350 high-tailed it out of there as well.
I was just like, "What the heck just happened?" I called law enforcement to report the collision. Needless to say, we almost lost our son that day. He turned one today. But there was a silver lining as well: The driver of the F350 was an off-duty officer and actually took the time to chase down the fleeing suburban.
It turned out the driver of the SUV was not licensed and was actually wanted on a warrant. So, it was a good catch for him. I find it awful that he just had so little regard for life at that moment. He saw the cart go flying. I heard the lady with him screaming at him that he had just hit a baby. He still chose to flee.
40. Sour Milk
I was painting in the basement and using paint thinner to wash out my brushes. Having four children, we had a lot of those plastic cups that restaurants give out with kids’ meals. I used one of the plastic Chuckie Cheese cups to put the paint thinner in, and after using it to wash the brushes for a while, the liquid turned a milky white.
I then went upstairs to grab something, and suddenly, my four-year-old ran up the stairs yelling, "My throat is on fire!" He had actually mistaken the paint thinner for milk and started chugging. They pumped his stomach, and he survived, but my wife has not let me live it down.
41. Toddlers Tend To Tumble
When I was about two, I was left at home in the care of my dad, who was busy working. I wandered off and found the tumble dryer, which had just finished its cycle. I had a little play with the dials, and when it started up, I popped the door open and climbed in, probably very pleased about a nice warm place to have a nap. Then, I somehow managed to close the door behind me.
I was found only a couple of minutes later (my dad was wondering why he could hear the tumble dryer working) and promptly pulled out. I was slightly singed and somewhat sore, but otherwise, okay. If he hadn’t realized, I would have been banged about at 160C (320F) for a good half hour.
42. Wurst Fear Unlocked
When my daughter was about two, we were barbecuing with her dad and my father-in-law, and they both insisted on feeding her a hot dog with the skin on and a bun, against my protests. She started choking on it and began to turn red. My father-in-law said, "Oh, just lift your arms up and cough," while her dad said, "There’s nothing wrong, she’ll be fine", and they both sat there.
Then she turned blue...and then she turned purple and then dark purple. I grabbed her by her ankles, held her upside down, and practically pile-drived her into the ground while smacking her in between her shoulder blades until the piece of hot dog popped out. I never want to see that shade of purple ever again
43. This Baby Will Self-Destruct In 10 Seconds
For whatever reason, my daughter endangers herself any time I try to poop. As a stay-at-home dad/Redditor, this is my only time for privacy and vast thinking. You see, babies are designed to find any way they can to off themselves; it is in their DNA. Never will you find an animal in nature who thinks it’s a grand idea to lick power outlets, choke while sipping water, or try to eat anything that isn’t food.
So, my poop-taking story is that she doesn’t do anything but play with her toys and sip from her bottle whenever I’m watching her, but as soon as I close the bathroom door, all I’ll hear are crashing noises or choking noises. She will find the most random things to choke on that you would have never even thought possible. Even Sherlock Holmes would’ve never found these objects, but my little baby will find them. Then, she will eat them and, oh yes, choke on them.
So, when I was halfway to reaching nirvana and squeezing off the last loaf, I started hearing this loud coughing and choking-like noise. I begrudgingly wiped, quickly flushed, and washed my hands. Then, I stepped out, only to find that my child had found one of those plastic things that hold the price tag for clothes in her mouth, and she was gagging.
Luckily, I was able to grip the big part and pull it out of her mouth. She then proceeded to cry because she wanted it back. The end.
44. The Injured Party
My daughter was six months old. I was trying to cheer her up, but I only made things worse. She loved being tossed in the air and caught. Unfortunately, I was at a friend’s house, whose ceilings are three feet lower than mine. An entire party watched me throw my daughter head-first into the ceiling while yelling, "Wheeeeeeee!"
It was a loud but dull, sickening thud, and the crying lasted for a good 20 minutes. Some of the people at the party never spoke to me again.
45. Bouncing Off The Walls
I was angry with my two-year-old, so I picked her up and took her to her room. I threw her on her bed, intending to slam the door and leave her there for a while, but she bounced right off, hit the wall behind the bed, and fell down onto the floor.
It was a huge wake-up call for me, the first and last time that it ever happened. I’m very lucky she didn’t sustain any injury.
46. A Bad Break
My mom fell down a flight of stairs while holding me when I was three. She landed on top of me and broke multiple bones of mine. I already had a broken leg, which is why she was carrying me. This was during a time when rarely anywhere had security cameras.
My mom was lucky it happened at a bank (some of the first places to start using security cameras) because nobody at the hospital believed her about what happened until the bank gave them the security footage. And that's the story of how mom almost offed one of her kids!
47. He Was In Too Steep
I misjudged the steepness of a hill and let go of my three-year-old, who was on his running bike (no pedals, no breaks). He picked up speed and managed to miss going into a river by flying over a bridge and onto a walkway. One side of the walkway has a field with an electric fence and fence posts lined up along it, but he thankfully fell off the other side and tumbled down into some weeds.
I walk by most days and shudder to think of what could have happened—so many things could have hurt him so bad. But all that happened was a few scrapes and bruises. Like a champ, he rode his bike all the way home after that. But I’ll never forget his little voice screaming as he flew over that bridge, "Too fast, too fast!"
48. Down To Brass Tacks
My two-year-old daughter cocked her head to the side with a curious expression, thought for a moment, then reached into her mouth and handed me a thumbtack. It scared the heck out of me. She probably wouldn’t have passed, but it would not have been good had she swallowed it. The messed up part is that we don’t use tacks for anything, and I have no idea where she could’ve gotten it.
Then, there was the time I walked upstairs to where she and her four-year-old sister were playing. They were engaged in a game of tug-o-rope. Right as I made it to the top step, the older sister let go, and the two-year-old went stumbling backward over the top step into my arms. A couple of seconds later and she could’ve broken her little neck.
As a father, I am in constant fear for my children’s lives—and mine, too, since they need me.
49. This Really Drives The Point Home
My mom was a teen mom and very immature (still is). She wanted to go out with her new boyfriend one day and had asked my grandmother to watch me. She refused since she was always the one taking care of me and told my mom to be a parent for once. She never expected that they would put my life in danger. I was about three months old at the time. So, my mom and her boyfriend put me in my car seat in the cab of his truck, between his boxes of tools and stereo equipment.
There wasn’t a seatbelt or any way to strap me to the seat, so…whatever. They wanted to go do what they wanted and didn’t think my safety was an issue. Fast forward about 30 minutes later on the freeway, and this dude starts tailgating the car in front of us while going about 129 km/h (80 mph). The front car break-checked us, the boyfriend tried to swerve out of the way, and we ended up flipping three times across the freeway.
Somehow, I only ended up with some minor bruises and abrasions, but it could have been a lot worse. This story always elicited a "WHAT THE HECK" response from me, but it never really hit me until about four weeks ago when my husband and I were driving our newborn home. That’s when it really clicked, and I became furious with her and swore that she would never drive my son anywhere.
At this point, I don’t even trust her to watch him alone, but those are stories for a later time. I know that there is no such thing as a perfect parent, and I will make mistakes with my little man, but I’m going to try my best to make sure he’s always safe.
50. Made Of Steel
This happened to my wife. When we had kids, we did the normal things to get all the breakables and chokeables cleaned up around the house: baby gates, kid locks on drawers, outlets and doorknob covers—all that stuff. One of the other things we did was move the cutlery block off the counter and up onto the top of the fridge, so there was no way the kids could accidentally get ahold of anything sharp.
Fast forward four or five years, Kid #2 is two or three years old, and we have a "screech" of neighborhood kids swarming in/out/around the house. My wife was in the kitchen working on lunch or dinner or something, and the kids were running back and forth. She turned around and reached up to the top of the fridge for a sharp blade to cut some food.
Her grip slipped, and the steak cutter she’d been holding dropped point-down into the very top of my daughter’s head, who just happened to be running by at the time. My wife FREAKED. Luckily, it turned out the blade had only punctured the skin on her head and didn’t penetrate her skull; my daughter barely even noticed that she was hurt.
She was more upset that my wife had grabbed her up and kept her from going outside and playing with all the other kids. We swabbed the little cut, applied a dot Band-Aid, and my daughter was quickly on her way again, none the worse for the incident.
I still like to tweak my wife over it, though, years later, whenever I make a mistake with the kids: "Oh, and show of hands, who HASN’T impaled our kid in the head?"