Toxic Parents: Check Yourself

Toxic parents are the great misfortune for children. How would you feel if I told you that in 2008, the administration of children and families in the US Department of Health and Human Services reported that more than 50,000 children were officially counted as victims of emotional abuse?

Toxic Parents

Whether hurtful words are intended to cause pain or not, they can leave marks and memories from a short time to a lifetime. Hurtful remarks can come from loved ones such as parents, and the psychological and emotional damage can be detrimental to their children. The way parents raise their children and behave around them, that’s the basic ground that builds their personality and self-esteem. So how do you know if a parent or caretaker is toxic? Here are some things toxic parents say that can affect the child’s life.

Criticism of the Kid’s Appearance

Offensive words towards their appearance. You’re ugly, too fat, too short, or too skinny, or you have ugly hair… Degrading a child based on their appearance will likely only increase their physical insecurity and worry about their body image. This could lead to serious emotional issues such as eating disorders. Parents are supposed to teach their children how to love themselves, no matter how they look on the outside.

Criticism of the Kid’s Actions

The toxic parents ask provocative questions about kid’s actions. Like, why do you act so weird? Why do you walk that way to that way, move or talk that way? Children tend to believe anything their parents say. So sarcastic questions or remarks like these may make the child feel like there’s something wrong with them. This makes it very hard for the child to be themselves around people even during their adulthood. And they may then be trapped by the discomfort and fear that others may laugh at them or notice the flaws that their toxic parents made up for them.

Selfish Wishes

I wish you were never born. I wish I had an abortion. I regret having you. I wish you were a different child. You cost me too much money. It’s so hard to take care of you. You exhaust me… Parents should never say something like this to a child. It will make them feel like they weren’t supposed to exist in this world, and that they don’t deserve to be alive. These remarks are so harmful to a child, to a human in general. They diminish their whole sense of identity, which can lead to self-harm and early depression. It’ll cause them to unconsciously hide their needs, feelings, and problems just to avoid the wrath of the parent. Lack of love and affection is one of the causes for some children to lean on stealing and being abusive.

5 Examples of Toxic Parenting

Unhealthy Comparisons

Why don’t you like your sibling, cousin, or the other kids, the other kids are better than you. This will reduce a child’s self-esteem substantially, it makes them think that they’ll never be good enough, no matter how hard they try. Also, comparing siblings with one another only promotes an unhealthy relationship between them. This will cause them to feel jealousy and resentment towards each other. Siblings should be equally given the right to build their own independent identities. It’s important that parents encourage their children into believing in themselves.

Threatening Abandonment

I’ll leave you, I’ll put you aside, you’ll wake up and never find me. I’ll just disappear. This will cause the child to have abandonment issues. Fearing that people they love will leave them because of who they are. When a child grows up, this belief will be unconsciously ingrained in their mind. They’ll be unable to trust future relationships for fear of them leaving and empty promises.

Fake Promises

If you do this, I’ll buy you that or I’ll take you there next time. But then they don’t do it. When a parent makes promises that they don’t keep, it breaks the child’s trust. It makes the child feel betrayed. Making fake promises is an excellent way to teach a child how not to trust others in future life. Even though words aren’t physically harmful, they can be extremely harmful to the psyche and emotional well-being.

Dealing with Toxic Parents | Kati Morton

Childhood is an essential chapter in every human’s life. Our childhood builds our personalities, behaviors, and beliefs. Have you experienced any of these forms of abuse? If you are a parent or future parent, be more mindful about how you talk to your children.