I don’t like my kid.


No matter how I write this blog, someone is going to take offense to it. Somehow the world went from being open and honest and accepting, to judgmental and butthurt, and honesty went floating out the window. As a person who thrives on honesty, this drives me nuts. We can’t say what we used to be able to, can’t make the jokes we used to make, can’t do ANYTHING without someone getting upset over it.

What I am about to say has become taboo again, and I can’t for the life of me understand why, because I think it’s completely natural and understandable, and NOT saying it, NOT being honest about it does more harm than good:

I don’t like my kid. 

Take a moment. I think if we’re being completely honest with ourselves, we all have these moments. Maybe for an hour, a day, a week. We wish we didn’t, but we do.

Six has proven to be a pretty rough age for Holden. He excelled in school, but emotionally, calvinhe just kind of lost it. Maybe it’s that his brother just won’t leave him alone when he’s home. Maybe I’m not giving him enough of the kind of attention he wants but doesn’t make known. Maybe he hates my cooking. Maybe he’s annoyed that I complain about his constant deadly farting. Maybe we just spend too much time together now that it’s summer time and he’s home all day every day. I don’t know what it is- but it causes an astronomical amount of friction between us. Even more than when I wanted him to unleash his bowels in the toilet and he found it more enjoyable to do so into a fresh diaper.

As a mom, I do my best to pick my battles wisely, but he has been making it incredibly hard not to flip the bitch switch into MEAN OL’ MOMMY mode. I hate it just as much as he does.
Unfortunately, I am human, and sometimes I cannot control my feelings, and my feelings right now tell me that I just don’t like Holden. That wasn’t an easy statement to type- but I’m not ashamed that I typed it here for everyone to see. I don’t like him, and I’ve let him know it.

Growing up, I was never really told that there was gray area when it came to feelings. We weren’t a mushy family; “I love you”s weren’t thrown around often… or really, ever. It was love, or hate, nothing in between. This, I believe, is one of the greatest mistakes my parents ever made, if not THE greatest.

If my mom and I had a bad day, I wouldn’t just think she didn’t like the way I was acting. I thought she hated me. And I thought I hated her. Our relationship was strained for the 19 years I had her here with me. Looking back I have to wonder; had I been taught that I was allowed to dislike someone I loved without the love being damaged- would our relationship have been better? Would we both have been happier? Would I not have chosen to be in so many damaging relationships?

The world is full of colors, and even shades of gray are beautiful. Nothing good can come from only teaching children black and white.

So yes, my kid knows that I don’t like him right now. He needs to! We should all know when we’re being so turdtacular that the people who love us don’t like us very much, that way we can correct the turdy behavior. He also knows that my love is unfaltering and NEVER questions whether or not I still love him even when I don’t like him. I always and forever will love that kid. Even when he’s acting like a little shit.

It’s okay not to always like your kid. They are human, after all, and all humans are spectacularly flawed- including us parents. I think it’s time we all accept that.

Posted on July 14, 2014 by Holdin' Holden 16 Comments
Holdin' Holden

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  • Jennifer McCarrick July 14, 2014 at 8:18 pm

    Yay!!!! Someone else who understands & teaches their children that it’s not always perfect rosey lovey dovey b.s. My daughter knows I live and breathe for her but she also knows that I will call her out on her nasty teenager crapola!

  • I’m totally agree. Unlike you my mother did teach me that there was a gray area and our relationship was still strained and it still found myself in damaging relationships as an adult and as a teen. I’m think that like you said all humans are flawed and we have to learn from our mistakes. However I seriously think it took a certain amount of balls to write this blog, but the people who don’t agree or get butthurt over it are probably the ones who need to hear this message the most. Love it!!

  • I often feel HORRIBLE, when I admit that I do not like my kid.
    I hold the hard line, and that’s what matters…
    But, inside, I feel like a horrible person.

    But, it is NORMAL and I am so happy that someone else feels that way.

    I love him to death… but, man oh man… there are moments I would rather he just… NOT be near me.

    Great post.

    • The want to like them all the time and to want them to like us all the time is also totally natural. I find a lot of elements of parenthood are contradictory to one another. It’s frickin’ frustrating!

  • When my kids drive me insane and don’t want to listen I tell them I i don’t like them because of the way they act. They understand too. I agree kids need to know about feelings and emotions

  • YES! There are times when I tell my kids that I love them, but right now I don’t like them or the way they are acting. They know the love is there, but they are pushing it and it better stop.

  • This is amazing! I often feel terrible for thinking to myself “God, I really don’t like this kid” when she’s having those neverending days of demon posessed tantrums and teenage attitude in a 3 1/2 year old body. I’m so glad to know that it’s normal and I’m not just a really shitty parent who can’t handle the pressure. Thank you!

  • I’m the same way. Sometimes I tell them too. “I so hate you right now.” They’re teenagers and even though I’m twice their age, I’m right there with them. (maybe act even younger than them) I’m one of those types that fling out hate and mean and then say, “I love you, I’m so sorry” 5 minutes later. Then I feel bad for yelling and I can never stay mad. lol But again, I can totally relate.

  • Great post! I don’t have kids, but that was an awesome explanation.

  • […] liked this blog post – I Don't Like My Kid I Don't Like My Kid What do you […]

  • My Mom used to say ‘I love you more than life itself, but I don’t like you one bit right now’. I say the same to my kids. OT but another one of her gems that I use today with my kids -when they are repeating themselves over and over while I try not to listen: “I am not deaf, I’m just ignoring you.”

  • I am right there with you. I have no problem telling my children ” I always love you, but I don’t like you very much right now and you NEED to straighten up before I blow a gasket!”

    I think this is a much better option than either lashing out at them or curling myself into the fetal position crying and praying that the little demon my child has turned into just goes away.

  • Well done you for saying what most parents feel. We always LOVE our kids, but there are days we don’t like them.

  • Your blog feels like home to me.

  • I love this. When my kids were growing up, especially during my daughter’s teenage years, I would say “I love you with all my heart…but I don’t like you very much right now”

  • I have very often told my difficult children “I love you but you are making it very hard to like you right now.” Or, “I live you but I just don’t like you right now with the way you are behaving.”
    I think it is also necessary to point out that they hurt us. They need to know that words and actions have a consequence. If we hide our hurt, our feelings they will grow up believing they have no rules, consequences. What they say isn’t the problem..it is us always us.