7 Sure-fire Ways to Make your Kids Dislike you

On Raising Teenagers


Primal Dhillon

2 years ago | 5 min read

On Raising Teenagers

Raising children is complicated. There are no universal principles like Newton’s laws of motion that work for action and reaction in relationships. One child may respond positively to something while another may not.

I am not a good parent (as my children will happily and readily confirm), and here are a few thoughts that over the years have helped me “damage” my kids. Better late than never!

#1 Drown your Message in Self-Created Noise

Keep reminding your child of what you have already said to them N number of times. Let your meaningful message get lost in your self-created noise. Drown them in, “I told you so”(s). Repeat what you said so many times that your child hears nothing and thinks of your opinion as unwanted and unhelpful rambling.

You are probably thinking what good is this article if it does not offer concrete examples of what to do. So here are some things that you can practice saying:

  • I told you to prepare ahead of time. You did not listen to me. Now you are stressing out about having to do everything last minute.
  • You did not do the right thing even after I told you what the right thing was.
  • If only you had paid attention to what I said.
  • It is your fault. Do you understand that you are solely responsible for your misery? In the future, just do what I say.
  • Why don’t you EVER listen to me? (Stress the EVER part, negate all the times they did take your advice. That was rare anyways, though, right?)

How to drown your message in self-created noise? (Image credit:

#2 Don’t Let Go of Comparisons

You can do this in multiple ways. Start with comparing your child to:

  1. Your memory of yourself as a teenager.
  • Ignore the fact that your memory may have perception bias (just maybe)
  • Getting a reality check from your siblings and/or your parents who may have different memories.
  • Ignore real-life changes. Say stuff like “When I was growing up I would never have dared to text when sitting with everyone in the family”. Do not acknowledge that you have no way of knowing that since texting wasn’t an option back then!
  • Ignore the fact that if you were raised in a different culture, you probably have a perspective from back home that conflicts with their world view.
  • Your standards are different, your measuring rod is different, and it’s important to help children create the space where they can determine for themselves what they value vs blindly accepting handed-down systems of belief.

2. Your perception of your relatives and friends’ children's’ behavior and your perception of your child’s friends

  • So and so got into so and so university. His parents must be so proud.
  • My friend’s daughter is the valedictorian. I wonder how she is so put together to manage her studies so well. She never gets in trouble.
  • XYZ’s daughter is always giving and caring for others; I wonder how she manages to be such a good human with all else she’s trying to accomplish.

How to ruin your relationship by comparisons. (Image credit:

#3. Consistently ask for Perfection

Make sure you add to your child’s stress by expecting them never to make any mistakes. Make comments such as:

  • I NEVER want to see you get anything less than an A+
  • Your room needs to ALWAYS be clean
  • Why were you up so late? You should sleep DAILY by _PM.
  • I don’t want you to have ANY friends who EVER get into trouble.
  • If I EVER find out that you missed a SINGLE class, I am going to be very upset.
  • Your bar is set ONLY that high? Don’t you think you’re becoming complacent?

How to set your child up for failure. (Image credits:

#4 Demean your Child’s Stressors

Refuse to see the pressures your child is under and insist on seeing their environment with your lens. Do not comprehend why your teenager wants to have their own identity or assert themselves. Push for conformity to your world view, see your child as an extension of yourself or as a reflection of who you are. Say things like:

  • Why do you care what others think of you not being allowed to go to this party? I don’t think it’s a good idea.
  • How can you be worried about XYZ issue? That’s not an issue. Focus on your college apps instead!
  • What are you taking a break from? That shouldn’t be stressful! That should be easy to deal with!

Simply negate the worries of your child. (Photo Credit:

#5 Hover over your child 24/7

Do not allow your child any time or space to process information or come to their own conclusions. Always try to “pour” your knowledge into your child like pouring fortified juice from a jug into a cup, in an attempt to make them stronger.

Get all your self-worth by running around them with a safety net all the time. Do not let them learn how to make mistakes and become resilient.

Do not acknowledge that your child is no longer a five-year-old. Don’t offer them opportunities to show that they are capable of taking care of themselves. Don’t let your child feel pride in, “I can make my own decisions”

Treat your grown child as a baby. (Image Credit:

#6 Make Everything about Yourself and Refuse to Grow Up

Insist that since you are the parent, you are ALWAYS right, even in someone else’s circumstances. Let the child know that there is necessarily only one right way of doing things and that is your way.

Make your child aware that he or she has to “succeed” according to your standards of what is right or wrong.

Associate “growing up” with children only, do not have a growth mindset for yourself. Do not consider any of their logic or opinions as having even a shred of truth. Strongly hold on to your deadbeat opinions and standards, and never recognize that it is your turn to grow up.

Yes, it is all about you! (Image credit:

#7 Play the Guilt Card

Make sure your child has the guilt complex 24/7:

  • After all, I have done for you, this is what you are doing in return?
  • You knew this would hurt me, yet you had to do this.
  • The only reason you are not doing well at college is to get back at me.
  • What will people think about me? My child is not doing well.
  • You have no respect for our culture? You really don’t care about anyone’s needs except your own.
  • I am such a failure as a parent, I could not teach you ANYTHING good.

There are many ways of making your child feel guilty. (Picture credits:

I hope you find these maxims useful. If you have other tips that “worked” for you at some point or the other, please share those by commenting on this article. You will get the satisfaction of “helping” numerous parents.


Created by

Primal Dhillon







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