Better Help says it’s ok to hate your kids sometimes

Michael Loren

There's a creeping guilt I feel when I have the thought, "I hate my kid." What kind of terrible person hates their kid, anyway? Well, I did a little research and, apparently, I'm not the only one. According to therapy website Better Help, "Although most would be too afraid to admit it, many parents have had a moment when the thought, 'I hate my kids,' has crossed their minds."

It turns out, there are a lot of different websites with advice of what to do if you want to sell your child on the Facebook marketplace. Whether it's a temper tantrum that gets you thrown out of a department store, a betrayal that makes you wonder what kind of animal with which you have cursed the earth, or a general refusal to consume any solid food, some parents regret their decision to procreate.

First of all, I'm here to tell you that it's perfectly normal to hate your kids from time to time. In fact, it's weird and slightly suspect if you never have. Kids know how to push our buttons and we're basically stuck with them for decades of our existence on this planet. Kids are like a life sentence with a cute but maddening cellmate.

Second, Better Help suggests recognizing that there's a problem. The problem could be you, your kid, or both. But finding the underlying cause is always a good thing. The underlying cause could be fear for your child because of anti-vaxxers, it could be anger over preventable climate change disasters, or it could be just that you forgot that your kid didn't eat any lunch and is hangry.

Knowing the underlying problem behind the simple (but not very helpful) phrase, "I hate my kid," is a little gold nugget that you can use to try to begin to find either a solution or a coping mechanism.

A third way to cope with resentment toward your children is to remind yourself of their cognitive development. Their incessant need for, well, everything in the world could simply be because they haven't yet learned to determine what is important and what isn't. If you have a young child, they may truly believe that they need to have their lego fireman. You, as a grownup, know better, so it's frustrating that you're compelled (by their screaming or whining) to go get the dang fireman from under the sofa.

Listen friends, parenting is difficult. In fact, it's downright maddening. I cannot imagine that anyone understood what they were getting into when they started this journey. But, barring any major changes in your life, you've made your own bed. So, lie in it, take a breath, try to recognize the problem, and remind yourself that your kids are just…kids. At the end of the day, you may still hate them, but you probably love them a little as well.

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Professional writer and journalist with concentration in data analysis. I specialize in interpreting data to give you unbiased, understandable information related to the state of California.

Los Angeles, CA

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