People With Strict Parents Share The Most Unreasonable Rules They Had Growing Up
Sure, every kid deserves to be disciplined now and again. However, some parents take their consequences much farther than they should… for breaking rules that are ridiculous to begin with! Rules may be a principal part of raising a child, but some limitations are nearly torturous in how nonsensical they are. Some parents seem to be on an infinite power trip, and their kids have to stick out some pretty insane regulations to survive under their roofs!
Could you imagine living in a house where you could be punished for saying “fart?” What about having locks on your pantry and fridge? How about not listening to Shania Twain because her music brings the “devil” inside? For some kids, these are realities– and they’ve been brutally punished for far lesser crimes. These scarred adults took to Humaverse to share some of the stupidest rules that they were forced to follow growing up!
#35 That’s Not Most Parents’ Concerns On Prom Night…
Couldn’t go to prom because dancing was the devil’s activity.
#34 What Are They, The Royal Family?
Tons of them— but the worst was about a year period when we had to address our parents as Mother Dear and Father Dear and our siblings as Brother Dear and Sister Dear. My father was strict, he just came up with that one day and STRICTLY enforced it until he went on his next deployment. Luckily he forgot about it by the next time we saw him.
#33 So, That’s Definitely Not A Way To Cope
My sister and I were not permitted to ever be angry.
It wasn’t that we weren’t allowed to shout or raise our voices. That was a given. It wasn’t that we weren’t allowed to talk back or argue. That was also a given. It wasn’t even about not getting violent or something. There was no question of that.
It was that we were never supposed to display any signs of being angry. Being angry isn’t “nice” and we were supposed to be nice little girls who only said, did, and thought nice things.
So it didn’t matter how horribly I was being bullied or how staggeringly unfair something was or how cheated I felt about another unreasonable change of mind on my parents’ part. I was never allowed to get angry, and if I was angry I was not allowed to let that show in any way.
#32 Come On, Let Them Have A Good Time
My (now) wife’s parents wanted an itinerary of where we would be on every date (she was 19 at the time but was still living at home).
I thought they were asking in a more general way so I answered, “Well, we’re headed to a show, then probably dinner. Maybe a coffee after.”
Which show? What time would we be physically inside the venue? When did the show end? Which restaurant? What time will you be eating? Which coffee shop?
I was just like “Ehhhh… haven’t really thought that far ahead. We’ll let you know.”
“She can’t leave till we know.”
#31 I Don’t See How This Could Be Distracting
No music allowed when cleaning the house, because it would “distract” us.
Also, not allowed to do anything with friends on a Sunday because it was “family day” (even though we never did anything as a family and just stayed shut in our rooms).
#30 At First, This Sounded Reasonable…
My grandma had a “no leaving the table until you eat your food” rule. Pretty reasonable, except she would prepare your plate, often with more food than you wanted.
One time she made me a chicken salad sandwich but the chicken salad had turned. She wouldn’t let me leave, she just sat across from me to make sure I didn’t get up until I ate it. This went on for hours until my mom got off work and picked me up.
#29 Time To Invest In Some Headphones
Listening to nonChristian music was punishable by being grounded for weeks.
#28 There’s A Reason I Don’t Have Any Friends, Mom
Super safe/great neighborhood. I was a goody-two-shoes rule follower.
I wasn’t allowed to get dropped off at the mall with my friends without an adult when I was 13.
Eventually, the other girls stopped calling and inviting me places, then my mom thought there was something wrong with me because I didn’t have any friends. She’d get really mad at me and try to force me to invite kids over to our house to do stupid baby stuff like play dolls. No thanks.
When I was 22 I finally made a friend and was going to crash at her house in the city after seeing a late play. She made my friend come in and meet her and asked her questions about where we were going and who would be there, who was driving, what their driving record was like.
#27 A Catch-22 Situation
‘Be home before sunset’. The sun sets really early in my country and if it was an overcast day I could not tell. Every minute I was late was a day I was grounded.
#26 If You’re Going To Complain So Much…
There were a lot of TV shows I wasn’t allowed to watch. Mainly things like Pokemon because it obviously promotes evolution. The big one though is I wasn’t allowed to get my driver’s license. I had to learn how to operate a car and drive in case of emergencies but was not allowed to get my license. There were extreme amounts of whining when I needed to be picked up late due to my after-school activities or be dropped off at a Saturday competition. Then I was the ungrateful one if I complained about them yelling at me for having to go to an event, for a school activity they signed me up for, that I didn’t want to do in the first place.
#25 Censorship To The Extreme
Among other stupid, non-sensical rules…. until I moved out at 17, I wasn’t allowed to say “fart” because it’s a “swear word”. If I needed to talk about farts, I had to call them “fluffs”. My best friend and I would kill ourselves over how silly this was.
I’m 26 now and as much as my parents are proud of me for my life accomplishments so far, I know they’re not proud of me for having a VERY extensive, dirty vocabulary. Feels good to prove to them I can talk like a degenerate and be successful.
#24 This Is Seriously Messed Up
Stepmother tried to boot myself (14 female) and my brother (12 male) out because she didn’t want us living with her. realized if that happened, he would end up dealing with child services etc. So he “compromised”.
As the female, I was allowed to still be living in the house but had to remain in my bedroom unless asked to come out for dinner. I had to ask to use the bathroom. My door had to be open at all times and no phone allowed. I was never allowed to be given cash so all of my stuff (school bus tickets, sanitary products etc) were bought for me. I often went without lunch as she wouldn’t make it for us (only her son) and we weren’t allowed in the kitchen. A teacher at school worked this out pretty quickly and started bringing me food each day.
My brother was not allowed in the house. He lived in a van (I mean a literal work van) around the side and had scheduled shower and bathroom times. He had to eat outside. He thought it was cool.
One day when I was 15, the police came to my school and I said I couldn’t go home. My brother had done something to set her off and she had chased him up the street with a broom, then came back in and trashed my room and the van with an axe.
#23 What Is He So Worried About?
We had to wear a jacket if the weather was under a certain temperature. Even a single degree wouldn’t sway my dad. He kept a thermometer outside so he could check every morning. On the other hand, our health insurance sucked, so there’s that. Once I grabbed a jacket out of the hall closet, sending everything else flying off the hangers and into a pile on the floor. I was halfway through my mile-long walk to school when he pulled up in his car, his face red, refusing to talk to me. I thought something terrible had happened to my brother. When we got back to the apartment, he pointed at the hall closet. After I cleaned up, he refused to give me a late note (school had already started) or a ride.
#22 Oh, But The Consequences…
No deodorant. It was considered a perfume, and using perfumes was considered vain.
There were a whole bunch of other ridiculous rules, but that was probably the most unusual.
#21 Way To Cripple His Confidence, Guys
Having to ask permission for everything. From having a snack to a glass of water to seeing something on TV. Sure, some of it might be reasonable, but because it applied to every single thing combined with very degrading comments, now as an adult, I struggle with figuring out what is ‘normal’ when it comes to wanting things.
I don’t know what’s allowed and what’s not without asking, but asking a lot is awkward since other people just assume. This combined with a fear or failure and rejection tends to make (unfamiliar) social situations awkward.
#20 A Laundry-List Of Crazy Parenting
1.) There was only one correct way to put on socks.
2.) I had to take the same size bites of food every time, nothing too small or too large.
3.) I had to put on my right foot shoe on first, and never the other way around.
4.) Every morning I had to greet my parents with a ‘good morning’ and every night I was to say ‘good night’ before going to bed.
5.) If I was going to eat a cookie, I had to tilt my head back and bite at the cookie so that the crumbs would fall into my mouth.
6.) If I wanted to talk to my parents it had to be about current events, even if I was just 11 years old.
Take your pick from any of those as to which one was the craziest.
#19 Can This Be Considered Torture?
My mother had a “You’re not sleeping the day away” rule on weekends. She’d wake us up by 8 AM every Saturday and Sunday no matter how late we were up the night before.
#18 Wow, That’s Some Real Potty-Mouth Language
My parents wouldn’t allow my brother and I to say “butt.” Or anything worse than that. The only thing it did was make us both very creative with language. I never censored my own children, besides telling them things like, “OK, we’re going to your grandparents’ house. Keep the f-bombs to a minimum.”
#17 Yep, That’s Obviously What She Was Doing
I was around eight years old, painting my nails in my bedroom. My mom walked into my room, smelled the polish, and was instantly convinced I was huffing the nail polish. That turned into the “no painting your nails without supervision” rule.
#16 Okay, This Is Just Insane
Locks on the fridge and pantry. Bars on the windows. Wasn’t allowed to have the computer password.
Not so much rules as paralyzing amounts of control.
#15 It’s Not A Prison, Dude
Sixteen-year-old me: “Can I go to the coffee shop with some friends? I’m done with all my homework and I promise to be back by bedtime.”
Dad: “No. You already went out once this week.”
That was actually the last straw because he made that rule up on the spot and doubtlessly had every intention of enforcing it. I snuck out my window and left home. He found me a couple days later and it turned out, after talking to his cop buddies, that he couldn’t have them arrest me unless I was found breaking laws. I agreed to talk to him and my stepmother, whereupon they told me I could either live by their rules or not live there again. No brainer for me— packed a couple of bags of favorite clothes and got out of there.
#14 “Helicopter Parents” Have Nothing On These Guys
I wasn’t allowed to be in my room for an extended period of time except to go to bed at night. Also, no naps.
My laptop was required to stay in the living room at all times.
When I started commuting to college because dorms were expensive, I was required to report to my father and stepmother’s room every day as soon as I came home, and they would yell at me if I didn’t come up without being told every day.
Texts must be responded to immediately. My father threatened to report me as a missing person because he called me while I was on a shift that ended at 3 AM and I didn’t text him back until the next morning.
One time, my stepmother asked for the full name, race, drug and crime history of a coworker whose house I was going to play D&D. It was only a one-off event, but still super weird.
I’m sure there are more that I can’t think of right now, but I’ve been No Contact with them for going on eight months now and so it’s been a while since I interacted with their craziness.
#13 It’s Not Like “Independence” Is A Thing
I wasn’t allowed to do anything to my hair. My mother saw it as an extension of her hair.
#12 A Gradual Descent Into Madness
I couldn’t have the Shania Twain cassette tape, “Come On Over” because it was bringing the devil into our home. Only allowed to listen to Christian music or watch TV when parents were around. After an episode of Friends prompted me to ask what a condom was, Friends was added to the list of shows not allowed. Once the Internet was a thing, any music, TV, or movies had to be approved of based on the reviews of Focus on the Family (ultra-conservative religious organization).
#11 Your Friend Is Very… Open
No doors. Not even for the bathroom. When I went to a friend’s house for the first time I never got invited over again since I went to the bathroom with the door open.
#10 That’s An Interesting Reason To Ban A Color
I wasn’t allowed to wear the color red because Nan said it was, and I quote: “a color for promiscuous ladies”.
No red clothes, red nail polish, red lipstick, jewelry…. Soon as I finished high school I dyed my hair firetruck red, kept it for nearly ten years.
It actually grew on her and she got really upset when I changed it.
#9 This Rule Is As Gross As It Is Unreasonable
Unreasonable Step-Dad: All number-two visits to the porcelain throne must be complete before 6 PM, or you wait till the next morning.
#8 Mother Doesn’t Always Know Best
I had two really good friends I wanted to hang out with. T was a good solid guy and never really got into trouble. J sold herbs and got into general teenage troubles.
My mom told me I had to stop hanging out with T and spent more time with J because T was a bad influence.
#7 What A Depressing Start To University
Latest I can be out was 10 PM even if it was a Friday.
The Friday night before I left for college, I asked them to go out, just one last time. I asked at 9:30 PM hoping they’d let me out long… they let me go out for 30 minutes. So, instead of hanging out with friends, I drove to a well-lit parking lot and bawled my eyes out.
#6 I Guess You Can Never Outgrow Psychopaths
School Time – No staying up late or movies on TV or going out
Under Grad – No male friends or calls/messages when at home ( had my phone taken for surprise surveillance ) or going on trips or staying out after 5 PM (sun sets here at 7 PM)
Post Grad – No male friends/no friends allowed at home/no outings/no trips
I live in a society where arranged marriage is a norm so now that I am of the age, they ask me if I have a special someone. Are you kidding me?!
#5 Like… Ever?
No sitting in the living room.
#4 Now This Is Called Finding A Loophole
My mom’s ex-boyfriend lived with us for a while and he’s the worst person I’ve ever met. He made a rule that specifically I wasn’t allowed to talk on the phone in the house (I didn’t even call people often?). One night a friend called me after they’d gone up to bed so I went outside into the street to speak to them, next thing I know I’m being screamed at out the window for being on the phone in the street.
#3 What’s The Point Anyways?
You must take a year of piano lessons in sixth grade or be grounded all summer. Which made no difference anyway because I only got to do things my mom wanted to do. Like, spend hours in her stores at the mall and grocery shopping. Then get criticized for not having friends hang out with me… at the grocery store with her.
#2 Even When She Was A Kid? Really?
I wasn’t allowed to have guys call for me or come to the house. Ever. Even when I was a child and dating was the furthest thing from anyone’s minds. She thought it would make me turn out to be “some little harlot”.
Unfortunately for her, shielding me from all those boys just made me sleep around later on.
#1 Way To Build Trust With Your Kid
I wasn’t allowed to have a key to the house because they thought I would sell copies to friends so they could rob the place.