Bad Parents Or Good Parents, A Matter Of Perception? Best Examples In How To Parent With Pictures, Or Not?!

Ideas On How To Parent Are Easy To Cite, But What Is The Truth?

Bad parents are all around - so us as society would like to think. In this article I will show you some pictures of what would be considered as bad parenting skills. So, what makes a bad parent? There again, what makes a good parent? Is parenting a matter of perception, a cultural norm or are bad parents a product of other bad parents? Ideas on how to parent are easy for others to cite, but what is the truth? The onlooker peers on a situation or circumstance, sometimes with condemnation, but often with a 'tut'. So, what are the answers?

This is not for me not to judge, but what about you?

I hope this article might give you more to think about.  Seeing, sometimes is not to believe.

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A friend sent me an e-mail telling me about the new submissions for best parent award. In the irony of the pictures, there is humour but also realisation.

Are bad parents created or just ignorant? Maybe they are an accident waiting to happen? Well, in the following pictures it isn't the parent that is at risk, it is the children. Or is it?

What Is Normality?

What is normal? When a child is brought up in an environment where guns and violence is accepted, maybe that is their normality? Maybe bad parenting is a product of themselves being brought up in an accepting environment, where this is then learned and the cycle continues.

Psychologists say that we are a product of our environment. They also believe that we are a part of nature too. This has been a bone of contention known as the nature-nurture debate.

In the gun picture, we see a young girl being shown how to hold a gun. Maybe the parenting logic for this is that they feel threatened, that their environment requires guns to protect themselves. In teaching this to their off-spring, therefore, the rationale is about empowerment to protect.

On the outside, we might not rationalise that reality, because we don't live in that type of environment. We all live, afterall, in our own reality - just a thought.

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Parenting And Sexualisation

Parenting in the first world attempts to keep sexual matters and young children apart. Sexualisation is a matter of control and is handled with certification and guidance. However, it hasn't always been like this.

Children of post war Britain for the working classes, often used to share beds with their parents and siblings. Many would have knowledge of shinangans, but wouldn't be aware of what was happening. Could this be comparable to what is being shown in the above picture for today? The nudity and sexualisation displayed in Victorian Britain vs pornography of today?

Don't get me wrong, I am not advocating this picture, but am trying to understand the rationale, especially the case with some of our European countries. They don't seem not to have a problem with sexuality and their teenage pregnancy rate is far lower than that of Britain and the USA. Just another thought.

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Parenting And Risk Assessment

We are told that we should open the world up to our children. Experiential learning is the best form of retaining a good learning experience. But where do we draw the line when considering parenting and risk assessment?

The picture to the side, shows a child being hung up-side-down, in an attempt for him to feed the animal at the zoo.

Looking at it from the parent's angle - what is the difference to feeding a goat than this animal? Should either of them bite, it would be a nippy experience! Maybe here, they have a little more control than allowing a child to go off free handed to a goat in the zoo.

No, this action certainly wouldn't cross my mind, but then again, I would be very aware if my children attempted to feed a horse - particularly if it isn't known to me.

Maybe I was a parent who was too aware of risk assessment? I find myself saying, it isn't for me to judge the actions of others.

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Bad Parents And Transportation

In these series of pictures, I can't help admire the ingenious little ways some of these bad parents have thought of as cheap forms of transportation.

  • Any chance of hitching a ride?

  • Would you trust this car salesman (child thrown in with the deal!)?


  • Somewhere 'safe' to put the shopping!


  • Look what mommy can do?

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Help me out here. I really don't get the rationale with the next pictures! We have a woman on a motorbike with a child planted in a wicker seat, situated between her legs. She must have some thoughts about safety because she is wearing a helmet herself and there is a helmet (presumably for the child) resting on the wind sheild. Or maybe that is for a.n.other for the back of the bike? Gee, I can't find any excuses here!

  • Good job it is a one way street or the baby would have twice the chance of being mowed down.


  • Well, a bit of plastic should protect him.... not!

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Lager Louts Inc

Children Grow Up Accepting Anything As Part Of Their Normality

Children grow up accepting anything as part of their normality. Even a bottle of beer might be cool if Daddy drinks it, afterall, a toddler drinks his milk in a similar fashion.

Drinking from a bottle, smoking a white stick and preparing a needle for a vein, would be normal if you know no different. As a result of the environment, the child might just grow doing the same and the cycle keeps turning.

Who are we to judge bad parents? Everyone has their reasons for being or behaving in the way that they do. Just because it might not seem socially acceptable, doesn't mean that the decision and reason behind other people's actions aren't reasonable to them. They are.

A Picture Paints A Thousand Words - But What Is Real?

Here we see a picture of a bad parent (assume) pointing at some children.  There is a warning sign stating 'Thin Ice'.  Every picture paints a thousand words, but what is real?  What is true?

There are the children playing in the snow - who is to say that the adult - parent or not - isn't actually telling the children to move AWAY from danger?  The lesson to learn, here, is to assume makes as ASS out of U and ME!  Instead of being labelled a bad parent, you could call him a good parent.  Don't allow pictures to sku the truth.

Bad Parenting Isn't Always What It Seems.

In the above picture, we see a very negative comment: 'Parenting - Next time he will get your beer faster', followed with a rather dramatic picture of a dart penetrating into the head of a boy.

This insinuates that the child was a product of abuse which resulted in a violent attack involving a dart. Don't be drawn in by the negativity! This picture might just be designed to grab your attention.

What are your feelings when you see this picture? Hatred? Anger? Well, you just might have fallen into the trap that the designers of this picture want you to. Don't allow yourself be manipulated and open your mind to other reasons!  Bad parenting isn't always what is seems.

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Speak Of Good Parenting Skills - Use This As A Model

It is easy to judge others, especially when it comes to bad parents. This label is creates such bad feelings, when really it would be far more beneficial to speak of good parenting skills.  Use these examples as a model.

My son, for example, is insulin dependant diabetic. When he was 18 months old, whilst shopping in a market, he was showing signs of hypoglycemia. I was attempting to get him to eat sweets to avoid this. It looked strange to onlookers that this bad mother (me) was force-feeding this poor child sweets. I was tutted at, looked down upon and huffed at. They didn't know the whole truth. They just thought I was one of those bad parents. So, was I a good mother or a bad one? It just goes to show that not everything is all it seems.

At the beginning of this article I asked and stated the following: 'Are bad parents created or just ignorant? Maybe they are an accident waiting to happen? Well, in the following pictures it isn't the parent that is at risk, it is the children. Or is it?'

As a society of individuals we are dragged into the debate surrounding bad parents. We then add fuel to the fire in our judgement of others. Things aren't always as it seems and in order to discourage bad parenting, we should be praising the examples of good parenting.

© This work is covered under Creative Commons License

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Good Parent, Bad Parent Or Consequence Of Action? (bad quality, but worth a watch!)

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Comments 31 comments

Freya Cesare profile image

Freya Cesare 6 years ago from Borneo Island, Indonesia

Duh, those are really sad pictures! Where their parents brain located? In their knee?

Great message and strong pictures. People need to see this. I will share this on my FB. Thank you. Vote up and awesome.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Freya - thanks, but I am unsure you really did get the message.

Freya Cesare profile image

Freya Cesare 6 years ago from Borneo Island, Indonesia

Sorry that was my strong response on your pics. I still reading this and keep failed to add new comment thanks to my bad connection.

Yes. I read and understand your message and agree there should be some reason for everything but still, in the world of teaching children several of these behavior is not acceptable. Teaching sex in so young age, put children inside Bagage, covered child face with plastic bag, duh! No matter what the reason is, these should not be the option. But yes, we should not judge too fast. Just look what I did, look at the pics and several of explanation and hurried put my comment then read. hehehe...

sid_candid profile image

sid_candid 6 years ago

Great Hub with a powerful message. Thanks for the wonderful idea.

Cagsil profile image

Cagsil 6 years ago from USA or America

Hey Shazwellyn, very sweet article. It's to a great dismay that many people don't use perception properly. Many jump or leap before using rational thought. Many people are going to be confused by your message and most likely react in a negative aspect, because that's how they use their perception. Those who have an open mind, will use their conscious thoughts to express a more understanding position. Parenting should be a responsible action and parents should be held accountable for their methods of teaching their children.

There happens to be so much skewed information out there and many people use the information to claim having knowledge and intelligence. However, as you've demonstrated by pictures- a lot of the lack sensibility or common sense. Pictures are not easily made for truthful statement, but to display ambiguity, so separation happens through confusion. Great hub. I found it very useful and voted it up too! Keep writing! :)

K9keystrokes profile image

K9keystrokes 6 years ago from Northern, California

I adore your lesson here Shazwellyn! As beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so is perception. Parenting, good or bad, is all about perception. Until we have shared the moments of fear that a parent of an unwell child has experienced, we have no right to assume the worst or the best. Simply loving when possible and helping when needed is our human requirement. Your hub drives straight to the point without being imperious, and I respect this. Another super hub with a thought provoking note.

As always a loyal fan.


Ben Zoltak profile image

Ben Zoltak 6 years ago from Lake Mills, Jefferson County, Wisconsin USA

Haha, loved it. Well rounded narration too! Funny collection, I once received a dart in the knee when I was a teenage boy, we turned the lights off in the rec room basement, epic fail!


shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Bless you Fraya - I have a lot of respect for people that learn by their mistakes, it is a good response, my friend. This is exactly what I wanted to achieve with this article.

Shaz :)

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Thanks Sid, I hope you 'got it' :)

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Thanks Cags, your comment is a great contribution to the debate. :)

p.s. The 'confusion' aspect was a deliberate demonstration of 'all that seems, isn't all that is'.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Thank you again K9 for your valued comment. Absolutely right - perception is in the eye of the beholder! We all live in our own reality.... 'this is my truth, what is yours?'

Always great to share the love with you :)

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Ben, this must have sparked a great deal of memory for you. I wonder where your parents were? *blame the parents... why not? Everyone else does!* lol

Wendy Krick profile image

Wendy Krick 6 years ago from Maryland

Its very true. Never judge before you know the whole story. I enjoyed the hub.

SteveoMc profile image

SteveoMc 6 years ago from Pacific NorthWest

I wanted to laugh, but wasn't sure if I should, then I couldn't help myself and enjoyed the whole darn thing. There were so many laughable moments, haha. Really funny stuff, thanks for starting my day out that way.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Thanks Wendy - Glad you got it!

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Well Steve - laughter is a therapy and is positive. I like positive!

profile image

Whikat 6 years ago

This was interesting Shaz,

A couple months back there was a tragic accident in my state involving a 15 yr old girl. She was on a thrill ride involving Bungee Jumping. Well, things went wrong and She took the fall with nothing to catch her fall on the ground. She was seriously injured and hospitalized in critical condition.

It was interesting to read all the comments blaming her parents for allowing this 15 yr.old girl to go on such a dangerous ride. Her parents witnessed the whole event and were devastated, but did not feel that it was strange to allow their daughter to take the jump. It is just like you mentioned, it was all a matter of perception. Thank you for the great article, I will share this one.

brianzen profile image

brianzen 6 years ago

Shaz.... Just start writing books and getting published you are amazing.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Whikat - it is easy to seek blame and go on a witch hunt. The lust for blood seems to be an inherant desire but isn't it better to console and love than to plunder and hate? Changing the mindset by example - starting with ourselves - is the way forward. Let this be viral, the power of love is the greatest love of all x

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Brianzen - thank you for your support, my friend. I am grateful for the gifts I have been given. The desire for more would only be to help others.

The great forces of the 'unknown' knows where I need to develop for the great things that lay before me - I know that something good in this realm will happen, but I don't know how it will manifest. I will just need to wait and see.

Thank you for your belief in me and, as always, there is mutual love and respect back to you, nameste :)

Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 6 years ago from South Carolina

Well done Shazwellyn! The most memorable situation was the one you shared about your young son's hypoglycemic reaction. Yes, it is so easy to misinterpret what we're seeing and to judge others harshly.

The photos were very provocative just as you intended, and I liked the things you wrote next to them. It really made one think. Thanks for another great hub that is sure to inspire many comments.

Unless we come upon an extremely dangerous act of parenting, like the infant left in the middle of the road, we need to learn to pause before judging, and get enough information to see if intervention is appropriate.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Hi Happyboomernurse... You always add value to my articles with your comments. Thank you and yes, having two sons - one with aspergers and the either diabetic, we have been judged as very dysfunctional at times. Shame the greater the disabilities, the more the judgment. Not that I have issues, I have been very lucky to experience what I have done - I am wiser for it!

Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 6 years ago from South Carolina

I so agree that we learn the most from the challenges that we face. We grow because of those challenges, not in spite of them. I left you fan mail cause I think your hubs are great.

Niiyke profile image

Niiyke 6 years ago from Lagos, Nigeria

some of the pictures where quite breathtaking. i think, however, bad parents are not created, they just don't know better. more forums should come up so we can help each other. let's save the children

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 6 years ago from Great Britain Author

Arh, but these photos might not be all they seem. Maybe you didn't consider this?

kallini2010 profile image

kallini2010 5 years ago from Toronto, Canada

I read your hub, but I did not go through the comments. I only say this because I know they usually enrich the story, but it seemed too many.

I don't think all these pictures are real - they are done for comic relief. It might seem that to be a good parent is easy, but it hardly ever is.

I don't consider myself to be a good parent for variety of reasons, but I am the only mother my son got.

My challenges don't come from the intelligence department, yet it does not matter, I am not perfect, far from it.

To laugh at parents is easy and I will be the first to do so, but I try to avoid judgment.

It probably goes for everything. Not only parenting. Funny that I read your article on the day when I feel my absolute worst physically and consequently as a parent. I have no energy to lift up a pen or read a book. So I tell my seven-year old son "Daniel, remember, you have to do your homework yourself." Which he probably won't do because he is not disciplined enough.

What can I do? It is what it is. Some days are better some days are worse. Judging myself too harshly won't help either, all I need patience, sense of humour and perseverance.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 5 years ago from Great Britain Author

Thank you Kalini - yes parenting is difficult, which is what I was trying to demonstrate. It is easy to judge others, so why not just attempt to judge ourselves and focus on being the best that we can be!

Bless you and thank you :)

gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 5 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

To shazwellyn: Something is totally amiss here. I mean seriously. These "parents" should be horsewhipped. Some people should not be parents. It takes a mature and unselfish person to be a good parent.

Many people have children just for the sake of having children. They do not think at all. They believe that children should fit into their lifestyle. Oh no, parenthood is about accommodation and compromising your lifestyle to fit with your child's needs. A revealing hub!

tlpoague profile image

tlpoague 5 years ago from USA

Interesting hub with some thought provoking pictures. As a mother, I have found that no matter what good parenting you have done, your child will pick a certain moment in a crowd to make you look like a bad parent. Case in point: I once took my nephew shopping with my husband. My nephew was two and chattering up a storm. When I told my husband I found the ducktape he was looking for, my nephew picked that moment to comment..."Ya ain't ducktaping my mouth shut." before continuing on with his story. The poor elderly lady standing next to me gave me the dirtiest glare. Unfortunately I couldn't help but laugh as I told my nephew that his uncle wanted it for a project not to tape his mouth. I can only imagine what when thru the elderly ladies mind.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this!

Grateful 5 years ago

Great article. I voted up and shared it on FB. This is the classic age old belief that there is a such thing a great parents and bad parents. Nature vs nurture is interesting because everyone always has all the answers and the know how to be a good parent. People really act like parents conceive with the intentions of being horrible. LOL I don't know anyone that gets pregnant/impregnates someone and says, "I'm going to be the worst parent this child ever could want. He won't even know what hit him after I screw him up." I totally agree with your point of view. What I have learned with having a 14 yr old son that I nurtured heavily for the first 6 yrs of his life is that none of it matters. They are individuals with their own though process and their own assumptions. We must listen to our children to find out who they are and stop telling them who we want them to be and at which age they can do it. Case in point: Sex: Abstinence does not work! However, if you are open about it, talk to them early let them know that sexual urges will happen but teach them the appropriateness of sexuality at the appropriate age level and keep doing that as they grow, eventually they just don't make it a big deal. Flipside, tell a child

they can't have sex...chances are they have already been doing it, now just behind your back. The ones that know the most about it, hold out or are more responsible with it.

shazwellyn profile image

shazwellyn 5 years ago from Great Britain Author

It is definitely a lotter, eh Grateful. Sometimes good intentions do go pear shaped but it is all to easy for us to judge, condemn and crucify without a trial.

Thank you for your valuable comment. Sometimes pictures dont tell a real story, do they?

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