Every parent wants what is best for their child. Every parent loves their child. Every parent worries about their child, all the time. But at what point does caring and worrying go too far? At what point does looking out for your kids best interest turn into insane over-protective "helicoptering"
The answer to those questions are in these insane stories. We found some insane stories on Reddit of people telling their stories of watching these helicopter parents going way, way too far! Like the mom that insists on knowing when her son uses the bathroom and what he was doing while he was! Or the dad that still picks up his daughter for work, even though she is 23-years-old! Enjoy!
"My sister in law is a helicopter.
Her kids are over-protected, well-behaved, and good at school, but they just don't work in social settings. She controls everything, from the food they eat to the friends they have. She sends us lists of presents we have to buy and if we buy something else, and she isn't ok with it, she returns it. Once we looked after her daughter and gave her one gummy bear because our daughter received one. Well, the next time we watched her (about 4 month later), the first thing she said to me, please don't give me a gummy bear today.
The worst part is, my kids are wild, loud, and messy. They are good kids but extremely extroverted. When I see her kids, who can sit at the table for 2 hours without complaining or playing with food, when I see how educated and polite they are, I sometimes think what if I was more controlling? On the other hand, when I see her kids extremely overwhelmed when they are confronted with toys her mum doesn't approve (Transformers, Dinosaurs, Barbies ...), or when they can't answer simple questions without asking their mum first, I'm happy my kids are 'normal.'"
"My wife was one of the interviewers at her company for a round of new hires. This girl had her mother come on the interview and answer all of the questions and had clearly written her daughter's resume and cover letter herself.
Every time the daughter tried to answer, her mother either answered for her or yelled at her to 'Speak up! No one can hear you when you mumble like that!' My wife was sympathetic to the girl, but there's no way they could give her the job. No one could tell if she knew anything or whether her mom was intending to be at work with her every day."
"I think my stepmom was a type of helicopter parent but her goal was not to protect me but to just make my life horrible.
She did most of the stereotypical things like strict bedtimes, strict TV rules (no violence/no sports/no cartoons), no video games, no other grades than A's were acceptable. She always had to be at my side: doctor, dentist, changing rooms, my first job interview. One of my good memories was when a college counselor told her off when I was setting up my schedule for that semester.
She would sit outside the bathroom with a timer when I showered, the water was not allowed to run for more than one minute at a time. My underwear was marked with each day of the week, I had to be sure to wear the right day or I got in trouble. Same with socks, but they were also labeled left and right so I had to be sure they were on the correct foot. My clothes and room had to be perfectly clean and organized; if it wasn't, she would rip everything apart, throw my clothes everywhere, tear the sheets off my bed and then make me clean it back up.
There was a chart hanging outside the bathroom door, I had to mark what time I went in and came out and what I was doing (poop/pee/brush teeth/etc). There was also a chart on the fridge I had to write down when I opened it and why. All the drinks were notched with sharpie along whatever bottle or jug it was so she could tell if I took a drink without reporting it. For a while, I was only allowed to eat the exact serving size of whatever food we were eating, she had measuring cups and scales to divide everything up.
Up until 16 years old, I wasn't allowed to cut my own nails, brush my own hair, or clean my own ears. She took my phone to charge it at the end of every day and would go through any text, emails, or history on it. She would match up the number of text to what the phone bill said to make sure I didn't delete any. I was not allowed to have female friends. One time, a girl that liked me texted me that she would not be at school that day with a sad face. My stepmom had a fit and called her from my phone and yelled at her, told her never to contact me again. Even at 18 years old, I had ridiculous curfews. One rare occasion when I was allowed to go see a friend, I was given a curfew of 6:30 pm to 8 pm. I got back at 7:55 pm and got yelled at for cutting it to close and was not allowed to see that friend again.
She controlled my bank account, I had to give her my checks from work and was given allowance from my own money that was barely enough for gas. I guess overall my experience was not good, I dealt with a lot of depression and had to learn a lot on my own. It took a long time, almost a decade, to become a somewhat normal adult and I'm still working on it.
I rarely talk to her now, I'm terrified of what she would do to my 3-year-old."
"My son has a friend that is super helicoptered by his mother. My son is 11, his friend is 10.
We live in a very small town. A very safe, close knit small town. To give you an idea, a few years ago my son wiped out on his skateboard and broke one of his front teeth in half. He was freaked out and crying. Within a few minutes, I had received three phone calls from adults that were nearby when it happened alerting me that my kid was hurt and I needed to go get him. We all look out for each other here. I say again, this is a super safe small town.
My son is allowed to go wherever he wants as long as he is home by supper time. My son's friend isn't allowed to leave his yard without an adult. Not even to walk the one block over from his house to ours.
One day, the boys were playing over here at my house and the kids that lived next door invited them to play tag. The game of tag was going on in the field directly across the street from my house. The street in question is a side street of a side street of a side street; we get maybe six cars a day driving down this street. When the helicopter came to pick up her son, she was super upset that I had let the boys cross the street by themselves and was letting them play out there without direct supervision.
The friend recently came to a sleepover at our house. He was one of three boys spending the night. The kids were set up to play video games all night and I bought a bunch of pizza and ice cream sandwiches. When it came time to eat, I handed everyone plates and all of the boys went and loaded their plates up with pizza. Except the helicopter's kid. He just stood there looking confused. He finally asked my husband, in a shaky voice, if he had to get his own pizza.
He also kept coming and asking us for drinks. All of the kids knew where the cups were and how to operate a refrigerator door except this kid.
The kid got upset that all of the other boys wanted to play a different game than he did and was, apparently, traumatized by having to get his own food and drinks. He asked to go home a few hours into the sleepover.
So my husband drove the kid the one block home and waited in the car to make sure the kid made it in the house okay. Helicopter lost her mind that her kid 'came home by himself so late at night.'
I guess my husband was supposed to hold the kid's hand all the way to the door?"
"I used to be a scout leader, I had prepared breakfast in so much as I'd opened the coolers and put the OJ, milk and cereal on the table.
I had organized the older scouts, who were already awake at the grill and they were cooking some bacon and eggs fried in holes in toast so it was all going well and another leader was off to wake the rest of the kids. I'm supervising the grill, watching because the kids had to cook their own, and then I see a poor kid (a new recruit) standing at the cereal table, bowl and spoon in hand just staring. The older scout leader (imagine Gimli with no beard) had also seen the kid standing there and since it was early and I am not the fastest of wit before coffee, Gimli managed to walk up to the kid first to see what is the issue.
The kid, in this mewling voice, said, 'Can you pweeese pour my cereal?' to the older scout leader. This kid would have been 10 or 11, we both felt immensely sorry for him that he couldn't pour his own bowl of cereal. Gimili, in his lovable gruff way, told him that he was in no way his servant and that he could fill his own bowl, then promptly walked away.
So I stood there by the grill while the kid poured out his first bowl of cereal. The kid had just learned to be so helpless. It was pretty sad. We also had another scout whose parents would camp in the closest caravan park to where ever we were camping as well, in case he missed them."
"My son's best friend has helicopter parents.
He is not allowed to watch the football world cup with us because we would watch the game in our yard with a load of neighbors around, so there would be no one really watching the kids.
He cannot go to or leave school on his own. Although he lives just 5 minutes away and we live in a very safe city.
He has activities every single day. They go to an all day school and get back home at around 3-4ish. He has guitar practice, choir, athletics, swimming lessons and math special education (not because he is bad at it, but to make him even better).
Our sons do sports together. If they are going on longer runs, they leave the stadium and go to adjoining park. His mom has to run the same track, so nothing happens to her son.
He can not have any sweets at all or drink anything besides water: no tea, no soft drinks, nothing.
He is not allowed to come over to play at our house because they might go play in our yard - where again we might not be able to watch them all them all the time. Also we might have toys that would 'badly influence him,' like Lego Ninja, which condones violence.
They are both 7 years old. My son uses the yard as if it's his own (well, it kinda is), he goes to school on his own somedays, sometimes he comes home on his own. He knows about sweets and doesn't splurge on them. He has, over and over, earned our trust and is on his way to become a very responsible person, which surprises me because he sure doesn't take me as a role model!
To be fair, his mom thinks I am a very irresponsible person all because I let them jump off the 3 meter dive tower at our local pool. They are both quite good at swimming, I was right at the side of the pool as was a life guard, so I didn't see any harm in it. Apparently the impact could have broken bones, he could have drowned or been scarred for life by the experience. I am not allowed near him, if water is anywhere near.
My ears are still ringing from that freak out even four months later."
"While in college, I worked at the dorms and got to see many instances of these.
One particular mother had both her children in the upperclassman dorm building, and living in singles apartments each (crazy expensive) and she came down to ask me - the front desk attendant - when her kids went out, what they did, and whom they brought home. I am legally bound to maintain students' privacy; once they're 18, they're legal adults, they can do as they please. Also, I wasn't going to be the one to tell her that her son liked a different girl every night, usually from the freshman dorms.
Then this Midwestern mom, who looked more than a little rabid, demanded to know where the nearest church was. Like I know, and/or care. Your kid, your religion, your problem. We had Google by then already.
Then there was the entitled mom who could not believe that she just couldn't go upstairs to see her daughter and had to go through the desk. 'I pay $45K for this?' Yeah, lady, two years before we had this system, someone went upstairs and assaulted two students, so do everyone a favor and shove your entitlement."
"I run a huge Book Rental department for a good sized University. 15k students. It's a beautiful program, 95% of our student's books are covered by one $85 fee.
Anyway, I've seen some crazy stuff with parents. My number one however is this one.
It's move in day. The worst day of the year. Hundreds upon hundreds of students coming to get their books all at once. Most freshman are accompanied by their parents. This one lady marches up to the desk, pushing other customers aside and dragging her mortified looking son along by the hand. She then demands that I tell her how she gets her son's books.
I tell her the best way for your son to get his books is to use his class schedule and go find them himself, as he will need to do this every semester moving forward. The aisles are alphabetical and the courses arranged numerically once you're in the right aisle.
She tells me that she doesn't believe her son is capable of doing that. Now, at the time, I didn't expect to be staying as the manager of the department or employed by the university. So, with nothing to lose, I said, 'Then your son isn't capable of succeeding in college.' And she lost it. Absolutely started flipping out screaming that I called her son stupid.
After her rage I said, 'I'm sorry ma'am, but you're the one who suggested to me that your son is incapable of using the alphabet and numbers to preform a simple matching task. I was just going off of the information you provided.' She stared at me. 'In other words, I'm pretty sure you're the one who just called you son stupid when you told me that he is incapable of accomplishing a kindergarten level skill.'
She throws another fit and then smashes the schedule into the kid's hand. He looks like he wants to die. She points off toward the shelves and tell him that she will be here if he needs her. Then she turns and glares at me, with a 'we'll see' look. I wish her a nice day and go back to my office and continue to observe the chaos of move in day.
Kid found his books in five minutes and tried to sneak out without her noticing. Sadly her hover skill was greater than his sneak. She spotted him headed out the door and ran after him screaming his name."
"I knew a kid in middle school who went to the same youth group as me.
His parents chaperoned every event which isn't bad, but whenever he tried to do something they deemed as dangerous, he would just sit and watch us all do whatever. We played basketball and his parents made him sit on the bench and watch us. We went to a hockey game and because there was ice, he had to wear his full winter clothing so he wouldn't get sick. We went out to pizza and they made him eat the pizza with a knife and fork in tiny bites.
One time, I sat next to him on a car ride for an event and gave him a Jolly Rancher and his dad saw in the rear view mirror that he put it into his mouth. His dad slammed on the breaks and almost caused an accident and proceeded to yell at me for endangering their son with such a choking hazard. He was 12. He made me ride with someone else in the group right then because I was apparently a danger to his baby boy.
He stopped going to youth group shortly afterwards because it was too dangerous and then his parents even started home schooling him. I wonder what ever happened to him."
"When I was a camp counselor, there was a girl in my group whose mom kept lingering during drop-off.
The sessions were less than a week long and most parents just said goodbye to their kids and left, but this mom kept hanging around and interjecting during the icebreakers I was doing with the kids. She eventually went to find the camp director and I figured she'd left, but when I took the kids to get their stuff set up in their cabin before dinner, this girl found her bed already made and all of her stuff laid out for her. Her mom came out of the woodwork during dinner and sat at the table with her.
She left - a full 8 hours after drop-off - after the director basically told her she had to go and all week the girls (led by her daughter) made a lot of jokes about how she was probably hiding in the bushes somewhere.
All things considered, it was pretty mild, but she wouldn't leave and the poor girl was so embarrassed because she just wanted to have fun at camp with her friends. I worked there again a few years later and she was absolutely wild and her mom had no idea what to do with her."
"My friend's parents.
She still has to be driven to and fetched from work by her dad
Her weird mom almost filed a missing person's report when she forgot her charger at home and didn't message them for 6-7 hours.
Her parents have her ATM card because she pays all the bills in the house and they only give her allowance for food
Her parents know all of her friends' contact numbers and calls us every few hours when they know we are with her.
Her parents comment on our photos together and tells us what they like or what they don't like. She messaged me one day because I deleted her mom's awkward comment about how my bra strap was showing. I told her it was not cool and I didn't appreciate it. Her mom got mad at me, but after a few weeks was loving and sweet to me again after I gave my best friend a few cupcakes my mom baked.
She's already 23, has a stable job, and is struggling to save enough money to move out."
"I teach swim lessons. A few months ago, I was substitute teaching a class of three 3-year-olds. I decided to work with the kids on their front floats and back floats. This is a very age-appropriate lesson. I never let go of the kids until I can tell they’re ready to be let go of. Teaching a toddler to float is a very safe process if done correctly.
The kids were all holding onto the wall of the pool. I picked one of them up to begin teaching him his back float. He cried because he was afraid of letting go of the wall. This is normal.
I assured him that he was safe and that I wouldn’t let go of him until he was back on the wall. I carried him in a circle through the water, careful not to venture far from the other two kids.
This wasn’t my first rodeo. It often takes a couple of minutes for a frightened child to calm down, and those few minutes of crying can be heart-wrenching, but after you cross that hurdle, the kid can learn to swim. Most parents understand this. This boy’s mom, however, did not. As soon as she saw her son crying, she ran over to our portion of the pool, about ten feet from where she’d been observing, and pulled him out of the water by his arm. I don’t remember exactly what she said to me, but it was something along the lines of, 'Can’t you see he’s crying? Why don’t you let him go back on the wall?' I began to explain, but she marched off with the kid before I had the chance. This was all in the first five minutes of the lesson.
She complained to my manager. 'That girl knows nothing about how to work with kids! It’s not age-appropriate to expect Junior to let go of the wall!'
'Ma’am, she was following a popular method for teaching kids Junior’s age to float. She was holding on to him; it was safe.'
I don’t remember exactly what she said after that, but it must have been extremely hurtful, since I do remember that it nearly made me cry and shattered my confidence as an instructor."