74 People Share Their Most Controversial Opinions About Parenting That Might Put Them Under Fire

Parents often consider their children to be the center of their universe, and there’s nothing wrong with that. They raise them in the best way they can, following traditions carried over from their own childhoods or sometimes taking advice from friends. Others, both parents and those without children, often eagerly share their thoughts on parenting—sometimes seeking an audience, and at other times, aiming to force their way of thinking onto someone else’s life. Obviously, some of these opinions prove valuable, while others are simply outdated or incorrect.

A recent Twitter thread addressing this topic went viral, attracting a huge number of people intrigued by a discussion about the most controversial parental opinions. We believe that some of the perspectives the Twitter users shared deserve further exploration, which is why we have selected a list of the most polarizing posts.

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Bored Panda reached out to the Twitter user @_Phoenixblvck, a counselor based in Calgary, and the OP who has started this important discussion. Phoenix shared with us the inspiration behind her viral thread: “To be quite honest, the entire idea got birthed when I saw other creators using the meme from that Tangled scene to ask for their audience’s unpopular opinions on topics ranging from academics to marriage, to career, etc. I’d say the inspiration came from seeing others do it and wanting to facilitate a discourse that we really need to keep having.”

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Pheonix continued: “The question became, ‘What controversial topic would people really want to share their opinions on, no holds barred?’ Parenting easily came to mind. It’s a conversation that comes up every now and then on X, and from mostly being a quiet observer, I could tell that a lot of people have a lot to get off their chest when it comes to how they were raised. I reckoned, ‘If this could be an opportunity for them to say these things freely, and all these opinions would be gathered on one thread where anyone can easily come to read and learn—or unlearn as the case may be, that’d be great.’ Beyond that, as a counselor, I’ve seen how much of a role parenting styles play when it comes to unresolved childhood trauma. If people could speak about what not to do, and others would be willing to take note, then it’d mean the coming generation could have it better. However, I didn’t want it to be just ‘unpopular’ opinions. I wanted every form of opinion, both popular and unpopular, to be welcomed. So, I put the tweet out. In all honesty, I wasn’t expecting that kind of response, I didn’t think the thread would go as viral as it did, but it felt really wonderful seeing so many people across countries share their thoughts and beliefs on parenting.”


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Controversial topics often lead to strong emotions and differing viewpoints. Phoenix Blvck explained that in her opinion, disagreements are not the problem, but it’s how we disagree that matters: “Controversial topics are controversial for a reason, emotions will get heated up, and a lot of people would have opposing views. Bearing this in mind, I knew it was important for me to approach the conversation from a state of calm at all times, which wasn’t really hard, as that’s my natural predisposition. I also believe in respecting people a whole lot, as well as extending compassion even in our disagreements. This state of mind naturally helped me steer the conversations I engaged in towards being more civil than vicious. People tend to calm down when they realize that you’re not coming for them with as much heat. So it’s like when they throw fire, you douse with water, and they’re now willing to speak over the smoke. Easy and gentle, even if firm, does it.”

Expertise as a coach and counselor likely plays a significant role in the ability to address sensitive parenting topics. Asked how she strikes a balance between sharing opinions and providing guidance to her audience, the OP told us: “Opinions are what they are, subjective. So I know well enough not to speak them as though they were laws, never to be broken. At the same time, psychological facts are what they are, proven. Notwithstanding, there’s always room for exceptions because humans will always diverge from the ‘norm’. We’re interestingly complicated that way. As a result, even when I speak on psychological facts as a counselor, I acknowledge that there are exceptions, so when people present those exceptions, I’m more open to discussing with them, rather than just reestablishing my words as the sole truth, and shutting them down. Same with my opinions. My understanding of human relations, thanks to my background in counseling, certainly helps me communicate better, and dealing with various kinds of personalities as a coach helps me know just the right amount of emotional intelligence to apply to make people feel seen and heard. And everyone loves that, do we not?”

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Phoenix told us more about the opinions shared in the thread that stood out to her: “A lot of them were really good. I think the ones that particularly did it for me were those that spoke about treating children as people with autonomy and boundaries, rather than as extensions of their parents. I wholeheartedly agree.” As for interactions, the OP mentioned situations when people took her replies to some comments out of context with meanings she’d never intended: “It reminded me to be more intentional about my responses in order to convey accurate meaning, and that even at that, there’d still be people bent on misunderstanding you, based on their own misconceptions. As such, learned to make my peace with being misunderstood all over again.”

We have also contacted the family & relationship empowerment coach Celia Kibler, who was kind enough to share with us her professional insights regarding controversial parenting opinions.


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With over 40 years of experience, Kibler specializes in teaching respectful, cooperative parenting systems for parents of toddlers as well as breaking the generational cycles of dysfunction and abuse. The expert told us about some of the most divisive and controversial opinions about parenting, like the belief that you can’t parent a child like your parents parented you or grandparents parented you. Celia explained: “Although we never want to repeat the generational cycles of dysfunction and abuse, there are many generational strategies that are extremely important in raising a confident, self-sufficient, respectful, happy adults. The methods that are important in raising every generation are things like schedules and routines, limits and boundaries, proper consequences, manners, and calm communication.“

The point that there is social media, technology, and current events does not override the need for basic methods of raising a kind, compassionate, respectful adult that can handle disappointment and knows emotional intelligence is always necessary for every generation. It is necessary for parents to realize that they are their child’s strongest role model and that whatever they do, they give their child permission to do. For example, well-mannered children come from well-mannered parents.” Kibler also mentioned other popular opinions that are often polarizing for society, such as “giving your child too much love and nurturing will spoil them”, and “time outs are taboo”.


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Controversial opinions can challenge the traditional norms of parenting. We were curious how parents can navigate the tension between wanting to embrace new ideas while also staying grounded in their own values. Celia Kibler shared with us: “Parents often will read one line and take it as something they should implement without reading or listening to the specifics of how something should be properly done. Choices are a good example because offering choices to a child is an important way to empower their individuality and teach responsibility. But offering a choice can be done as wrong as it can be done right. If a parent doesn’t learn how to do a technique that is successful for a child, it will fail and cause confusion for that parent simply because it was not done right and they didn’t take the time to learn everything they could about that specific method.”


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According to Kibler, another challenge parents have with new ideas they learn about is the lack of consistency given to any one technique:

“If there is no consistency, most strategies will fail. Consistency itself is one of the most important keys of parenting.”The expert added: “It is important to know that our heart and intuition will know what’s best for our child. Stress, which is often caused by trying to live up to what society thinks we should be doing, will create more hardship than if we do what we think is best. A good example of that is when society says if you don’t breastfeed your child, you are a bad mom, when often there may be moms that are uncomfortable with it for whatever reason, and alleviating the stress of trying to nurse a baby helps everyone become more relaxed and happy during what is a naturally sometimes difficult stage of life when we welcome a new baby. There are lots of healthy formula-fed children with parents that are great parents and they have been raised successfully into adulthood.”


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The internet provides a platform for diverse parenting opinions to be shared widely. We were wondering how exposure to such a variety of viewpoints can influence parents’ decision-making processes. The family & relationship empowerment coach said: “There are systems for everything in life. When you start a career, you learn how to do something, going to the bathroom has a system, cooking a meal has a system, all parents need a system too, to create family harmony but many think it’s ridiculous to learn a better way.”

“There are a lot of ideas out there for parents to access and implement. As I said before, though, often these ideas are tried, sometimes incorrectly without consistency, and failed. Leading to the idea that I hear so often, ‘I’ve tried everything, and nothing has worked!’ To which I usually ask, what have you tried and how long were you consistent with that strategy?”

Lastly, Celia Kibler added: “The problem with too much information is too much information. Parents don’t know what to believe, what to implement, and how to react or act, they feel judged by others and then start feeling like a bad parent and a failure. It can also lead to couples believing two different things and parenting in conflicting ways, causing a lot of chaos, stress, and confusion for their child, which is destructive to the relationship of the parents. It is best for parents that truly want to improve the cooperation of their children and help the harmony of their family to learn a complete system, not just utilize a few tips.”


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Source: boredpanda.com

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