There’s no dearth of strict parents with unpleasant yet creative ways of setting boundaries for their kids, especially in desi households. Here are some people who revealed how their strict parents went overboard with severe rules and trust us, some of these answers are truly bizarre.
Trigger Warning: Some of these events contain instances of abuse. Reader discretion is advised.
Here’s what Redditors had to say!
1. “My parents once called the police when I didn’t answer the phone for an hour. I was 17 and sleeping.”
2. “I once got beaten and locked in the basement because my hands were literally not large enough to play a certain piano piece (I couldn’t play an octave separation yet). Before you ask, yes I am Asian.”
3. “When I was in first grade, I had a writing homework assignment. My dad used to be weird about me erasing because he wanted me to do it right the first time. I ended up erasing a lot on this homework and my dad took the paper from me, ripped it in half and told me to start over. Turns out it was the last sheet of paper in the entire house, and I don’t remember why but for some reason, we couldn’t go and buy more paper that night. So ironically, I ended up having to completely erase an old homework assignment in order to have a sheet of paper to start over on. I’m 22 now and still give him crap about this.”
4. “The worst punishment was that one time they decided that we were such bad kids (my sister was 14 and I was 12) that they took everything we owned and bagged it up into garbage bags. They made us carry them out to a burn pile and they burnt everything we owned. All of my childhood memorabilia, pictures, clothes, diaries, everything. Burnt it all. When it was done burning the next day, my sister and I looked through the ashes and all that was left were two silver rings. We cleaned them off and kept them. Crazy shit.”
5. “My neighbour would never let her son eat anything that she hadn’t personally given to him. I don’t mean like she had to personally cook it or anything, she just had to be the one giving it to him. If he ever went to other houses to play or birthday parties, she would pack him lunch with a protein shake, yoghurt and a cereal bar or something. We thought it was because he had some kind of dietary requirements or allergies, but no, she just didn’t want other people feeding her son.”
6. “I was not allowed to use public restrooms. I “ruined” our Disney trip because of how many times we had to go back to the hotel (not on site) when I was six. I quite honestly had accidents when I was far too old to do so because my parents had my teachers reporting bathroom use to them too. There was no place I could safely use the restroom other than my home without getting into trouble. Finally, I got to use public restrooms without punishment when I fucking went to college.”
7. “My parents once grounded me for two years for getting a ‘B’ on my report card. They took everything out of my room, besides the bed and I wasn’t allowed to do anything with friends. After a year and a half into it, I asked if I could be un-grounded and at that point, they had actually forgotten what they grounded me for, but refused because “I must have done something bad if they grounded me.” Also, they refused to let me stay up past 8 pm. Even in high school.”
8. “No talking at the dinner table other than the occasional “Do you want some (more) of ___ or please pass the ___”. We could not talk about anything at all. No small/idle chat was allowed. The first time you did it, you got yelled at. The second time was a whooping and then you were sent to your room, until the next day, without the rest of your meal. I make it a point now with my kids, to chat up a lot during each and every meal.”
9. “My 18-year-old girlfriend of 3 years (I was 19) told her mom that we were sexually active and she banned us from talking and filed a restraining order. I haven’t talked to her since.”
10. “In high school, my dad forbade me to talk to anyone of the opposite sex, after being caught at the bowling alley on a double date with my boyfriend. In the car, he threatened to taser me in front of my friend. After a week of his anger not subsiding, he became angry with my lack of emotional response to his psychological punishments. So, he called the police to have me escorted out of the home and have me taken to some sort of juvenile shelter. Thankfully, I already had a back up plan in place with my friend, whose parents and my mom gave consent for me to stay there.”
11. “I refused to greet my sister’s new boyfriend with anything more than a “sup”. So later that night, my mom hulk smashed my laptop, double fist style.”
12. “My mother went crazy and left the house in tears on my 18th birthday because I wanted to go out with my friends. She didn’t come home till after 2 am.”
13. “We weren’t allowed to have food upstairs, but I had food wrappers in my trash can. So, they searched my whole room, ripping clothes off hangers and throwing stuff out of drawers. For 3 months, I wasn’t allowed in my room for ANYTHING unless accompanied by one of them. I slept on the couch.”
14. “I was banned from “free reading” (aka, any reading outside school requirements) because I read too many books on my own and they thought it was affecting my studies. During the time that was in place, I would hide books in the bathroom and read them there. On average, I would spend roughly 20 minutes sneak reading Calvin & Hobbes and Harry Potter (I was 14 at the time) in the toilet.”
Hmm, and you thought your parents were harsh!