- Family and Parenting
7 Reasons Why It Sucks to Be a Kid
While most of us remember our childhood fondly, it’s easy to forget the lack of autonomy and sheer boredom of being a kid. From endless summer days with nothing to, do to weird aunties pinching your cheeks, most kids put up with things that adults would never tolerate. Before you click your heels together three times and head back to the wonder years, consider the following 7 things that suck about being a kid:
You don't get to choose what you eat
While you may love sauerkraut and spinach as an adult, it’s unlikely they were tops your list of things to eat as a child. That probably goes double for brussel sprouts and liver. While you have the option to forgo those tasty delights now, most kids are forced to eat what’s in front of them. While it may be that parents have the best intentions in mind when they place a whopping serving of vegetables on the plate, as a child, the experience can be true torture. My brother would spend hours chewing the same piece of meat until he could swallow it like an aspirin with a big glass of water.
You don't get to choose what you wear
It may be charming to dress your children up in matching outfits when they go to Sunday church, but it’s another thing entirely to be dressed like you sister in front of your friends. How would you like it if you were forced to dress like your cube-mates at work? Not a pretty picture, but a reality for millions of children on Easter Sunday.While you would probably be ill advised to let kids wear Batman and Cinderella costumes to school everyday, a little choice in what they wear contributes to their self-esteem and growth as they age. The freedom to choose benefits both children and adults.
You have to go to bed when you're not tired
Most of us would bend over backwards to get another couple hours of shut-eye each week, but as a child, lying in bed and staring at the ceiling is far from a treat. Even though parents mean well by having their kids get the daily recommended amount of sleep, the only place kids should be counting sheet is on a farm.
You have to share your stuff
As children we are taught to share our toys and be polite. Somewhere between those tender years and middle-age, those ideals go out the window. While it may be easy for a parent to say, “Let your cousin play the video for awhile,” it’s highly unlikely that the adult version would toss over the keys to that brand new Corvette or share the earbuds from their iPod.
You can't have a good cry
In the supermarket it’s common to see kids being dragged down the aisle with an angry mother yelling “Stop crying” or “Don’t be a baby.” Try that at a funeral parlor or divorce court and you’ll be assaulted. While adult problems seem far more important than children’s tantrums, feelings and emotions run just as deep in children as adults.
It's really boring a lot of the time
Even though a Sunday church service may only last an hour, it can seem like a lifetime to a small child. How much value does a child get from an admonishment not to commit adultery? Do kids really have to know about damnation and fornication at the age of 6? While a healthy religious life can be valuable in building strong moral fiber, an hour of intense boredom doesn’t make that process any easier.
You don't have any privacy
Adults take privacy for granted. As a child, you’re forced to dress, bathe, and even poop while someone is watching. While there is certainly a learning curve for human hygiene, some level of privacy is valuable for kids once they master the intricacies of bottom wiping. Learning how to conduct yourself in private is equally important as learning how to conduct yourself in public. While there are certainly limits, a little privacy is a treat for all of us. After all, what's the difference between ready the paper or reading Green Eggs and Ham.
Growing-up can be a magical experience. Like a caterpillar turning into a butterfly, the transformation from child to adult seems implausible until you realize that everyone does it. While discipline is certainly an aspect of a parents role, it shouldn’t be the sole focus. Even in childhood, life is too short to sweat the small stuff.