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People Share What Life Lessons Their Parents Taught Them That They Had To Unlearn

Nature -vs- Nurture...

People Share What Life Lessons Their Parents Taught Them That They Had To Unlearn

Parents do the best they can. At least most parents do... we pray. We learn from them how to go forward in life. Sometimes our parents are wrong and sometimes we learn the exact wrong things. The eternal battle of nature versus nurture is a real issue. Each generation grows and changes and pretty radically these days. We often have to differ from the lessons and beliefs our parents bestowed upon us. And that is easier said then done!

Redditor u/RealAppearance wanted people to divulge a few things about their learned behaviors by asking... What did your parents teach you that you had to unlearn?

Be Normal...


Even though I'm a leftie, they insisted that I write with my right hand. They were convinced that it was the "normal thing to do."

It was a huge struggle writing with my right hand, as every impulse told me to use the left. Finally, as an adult, I learned to write with my left hand. It came so naturally that I never used the right again. Back2Bach

For the love of God... USE YOUR TURN SIGNAL!!! 

That you don't have to use your turn signal if there's no one behind you. Got pulled over by a cop that was just sitting in his car on the side of the road. imarealgrampa

My mom doesn't use a turn signal for any reason, and she even changes lanes without looking sometimes. So one time I bugged her about using the signal and she said she didn't want the other drivers to know where she was going.TheRoseByAnotherName

You got to have friends....


How to not make friends.

It was always emphasized that friends are meaningless and we should stick to ourselves and not talk to anyone else. Now, it's hard to make friends and keep them, or even have meaningful relationships with other people. flecka22

I have the same problem but in a different way. I was raised by my mom and grandparents, no siblings. I was never discouraged from making friends but I was never encouraged either. I didn't know anything but my toys and eventually video games. I was never "pushed" to try out for any activity. Also lived in a very rural part of town so there was no one around for me to hang out with.

So I became a huge loner. Always have been, always will be. I learned social skills eventually but still not extremely well. DrGiggleFr1tz

Peace first...

Learned from my dad how to be non confrontational because of his explosive anger. I've come to realize not everyone gets irrationally angry when you confront them so I'm working on that. YANMDM

Yeah that's relatable. It's fascinating how many anti-confrontational people I've come across with volatile/narcissistic fathers. What's really interesting is I wouldn't even say my dad was abusive or a bad person, and yet I definitely had to walk on eggshells around him. yoitsthew

I know of which I speak! 

My mother has a habit about talking about things like she's an expert. It wasn't until I hit my late teens she would make it up without having proven or factual read about anything. Also she's really gullible when it comes to polite people in administration. I've learned to question everything. Jgalayd

Money Changes Everything...


Whatever happens, don't spend money. It was a breakthrough in therapy when I figured out that if I have a problem, and I can fix it by buying something I can afford, then it's ok to buy things. planetheck

Money is a tool. Nothing more nothing less. People have an unhealthy attitude toward it. No one would have the attitude they have towards money towards a shovel. Zardecillion

Eric and Jimmy and.... Jolene?

My parents never wanted to listen to kids music so they would change song lyrics and just sing them loudly over the songs when I was in the car. The most notable was the Jimmy Buffet song that goes "why don't we get drunk and screw" which they changed to "why don't we get lunch at school."

I was 20 before I finally figured out Jimmy wasn't interested in eating hot lunch on a water bed and Eric Clapton wasn't actually singing about hanging out with a woman named Jolene. foxykittenn

Cleanliness is next to Godliness...

I love my mom, but she wasn't and still isn't the most attentive housekeeper. I never really realized it until I was much older. I lived like a total slob for a long time. Then I met my ex with whom I have a son. She was/is a freaking cleanliness nazi.

It rubbed off though, because now I'm just as bad. I never realized how good having a very clean home is for your mental well-being. Theearthhasnoedges

Life is Rough...


It took decades to (mostly) de-normalize emotional abuse / gaslighting. In my ignorance, I hurt many people I care(d) for deeply. Cheftard

I cry a lot realizing the people I hurt when I myself was hurting due to these things. We are better people by acknowledging it and trying to be better. ambann15

You're both wonderful people, and I hope you might be able to find some closure with some of the people you drove away with those mistakes.

As you said, you're a cut above the rest of understanding that it is toxic behavior and working on it. Many internet hugs to you, stay strong. WhineyVegetable

Like Minds.... 

To try to finish people's sentences. My mom would sometimes get lost/stuck in the middle of her sentence so my sisters and I would finish the sentence for her since we could usually guess what she was trying to say. But for most people, this would just be annoying. SmartAlec105

How am "I" the normal one?

Bunch of stuff about what a burden I was.

They also convinced me that I was an ungrateful person who couldn't feel gratitude, and I believed that until probably my mid-20s. eight-sided

Same over here.

I often wondered why I'm able to be so patient with everyone else (friends and even strangers) but with my close family (parents and brother) I always get easily angered at them, and afterwards they call me a jerk, sociopath, ungrateful piece of crap and other mean stuff.

Just recently I've learnt that my house is full of narcissists who've manipulated each other and me all their life, and that explains all the self doubt and negativity. I still wonder how I turned out normal, or maybe I am not but don't even realize it. user7526

Too Toxic...


Respond with anger to anything going wrong. Cunninghamslawyer

Wish my dad would unlearn this. Cylon_Toast

I didn't think much of my Dad's anger until I had kids. Looking into my daughter's eyes and realizing he looked into mine the same way, and made the decision to act the way he did, painted a very vivid picture about his character. Not the kind of poison I want my kids to look up to. Cunninghamslawyer

Stable isn't a dirty word... 

To live life on the fly. Treat every day like your last. It's really a crappy, selfish way to live. ThanosIsInnocent

If everyone treat each day like their last it would be utter chaos. If I knew I would die tomorrow, then I would gamble my life savings and other stupid things that would get me consequences. TheBanisher967

Finish the puzzle... 

If you need to know something, they'll teach it in school. Don't screw something up by trying to fix it yourself. Always call a professional. YOU have problems. WE don't have problems. Everyone else in this family is normal. That was the mentality. Whenever I would ask about that sort of thing, I was told that I was just a kid and didn't need to worry about it. Then I got criticized in my 20's for not knowing how it all worked. godsbane77

There are worse things in Life!


Directing biting, hostile comments and insults at your family every day. Catastrophizing when everyday inconveniences occur.

Defeatism/Taking everything as a cosmic sign of your bad luck. (Spilling milk on the kitchen counter and floor = "I can just never get ahead in life!" — an actual recent quote)

Ruminating over old minor slights endlessly, for years. ("Do you remember the time your grandma said insertfairlyneutralcommenthere?" No mom, I gave her the benefit of the doubt that she didn't mean anything by it, and also that happened literally 20 years ago.) HookerMitzvah

Hot Button Issues.... 

That vaccines don't work, make you sick/weak/dead. Well I didn't have either, nor did my siblings. Still silly though. And I think it was sids she was worried about, then 'brain injury.' MrReyneCloud

Win at any cost! 

Actual words from my dad's mouth: "Don't cheat, unless you know you'll get away with it." -spookyxghost-

It's not cheating if you don't get caught. That's fine for boardgames but not in relationships. AAA515

I think the point is that you can't know for sure that you'll get away with it. It's not something you control. Climax708

it's not all about you!


Not everyone is out to get you... life isn't about being paranoid. Hiworld1122

I think my dad has some deep seated problems with this. Any look or comment could be a slight. He recently left the church our family had been going to for 12 years and was actively involved in because he thought the sermon was ridiculing him directly. But the kicker: the new church's sermons were ALSO about him specifically even though no one there knew him or his situation. snoozecrooze

The Sun will come out tomorrow... 

That you should always anticipate the absolute worst. Friend late meeting you? They're probably dead. Currently working to unlearn this in therapy. KieshaK

I walked out of a store a couple weeks ago with my mom and the sun had come out. It made me happy and I said "Yay! The sun is finally out!" She replied "well, I'm sure it won't last more than five minutes." It felt like she had just burst my little happy bubble and then I realized how negative and pessimistic she is. And it made me realize what your parent's attitude can do to you. So I want to be conscious of that with my kids. Interestingly, my one son has to write a paper on the health benefits of optimism, so it is all good timing for me. :) SunshinePumpkin

Religion is tricky.... 

Religion. My family is hardcore Roman Catholic, when I was younger, grade school to high school, my aunt would drag me to processions. We walk for miles holding candles while singing chants. I thought that was normal, she wanted us to follow what the church would tell us to do. When I left home for college and did my own study about religions I became agnostic and realized everything we did was weird. Still don't have the guts to tell them my religious views, they would flip. hibiscusity