Someone Wanted To Know: “When Did You Realize Your Family Wasn’t Like Other Families?“, And 36 Delivered

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Our world is remarkably diverse; different cultures, beliefs, religions and unique personalities. Every one of us has an individual life goal, and we enjoy things that some might not even dare to try. 

Nearly 8 billion individuals are currently walking on the same earth, yet you won't find a person identical to you. The same goes for families – they all come in different sizes, structures and environments. 

"When did you realize your family wasn’t like other families?" – this online user turned to one of the most informative subreddits to find out how others discovered that their family was, perhaps, a little atypical. The question has managed to receive just over 2K upvotes and 1.4K worth of comments discussing their relatives. 

More info: Reddit

#1 Having A Supportive And Generous Family

When all of my friends wanted to hangout at my house. It was something that I came to appreciate too late in life and with my family I am killing myself to replicate. I may have grown up poor in a wealthy area, but my home was always filled with love and attention from my parents who were good parents. All of my friends spent their teenage years as latch key kids, and always wanted to hangout at my place. I never understood it, and always wanted to get out of the house, but sure enough I was always hanging out with people at my place.

It really struck home for me in my mid twenties when I ran into someone from high school I would hang out with. They almost immediately checked on how my family, made sure my parents were doing good, and stuff like that. I asked about his family and he gave me a brief update and kind of explained how his family was more like friends and my family was more like family. Many of my high school friends found my parents of Facebook and still keep in touch with them. My parents have helped save multiple marriages, give a lot of parenting advice to my old friends, and are god parents to basically a small army.

Image credits: Civil_Massacre

#2 Stay-At-Home Dad And A Working Mother

My dad was a stay at home dad and my mom was the breadwinner. At school whenever I was sick/needed to be picked up/any other issue, they would tell me they would “call Mom” but I would insist they not bother her at work and call my dad who was at home and available to get me. Stay at home dads are rare I guess

Image credits: babyiguana3

#3 Having Emotionally Abusive Parents

In 9th grade, my friends held an intervention for me after I came into school crying again. They made me go to the counselor.

They told me to just give some recent examples of stuff my parents said to me.

After 30 minutes of this, I was crying, of course. But what boggled my mind was that *everyone else* in the room was sobbing too. A half dozen other 15 year old girls, and the 30something school counselor.

That was the first time I realized that maybe I didn't deserve it when my parents were mean to me.

Image credits: Carbonatite

#4 Showing Love Through Mockery And Loud Arguments

My family shows each other love through playful mockery, sarcasm, and arguing loudly about things that don't matter.

Try doing that as your default when you meet new people.

Image credits: openletter8

#5 Not Having To Hide From Parents When They'd Come Home

When my friends wouldn't hide when their parents came home - in fact they'd go greet them.

To say I was shocked after years of isolation without being in any house but my own is an understatement.

Image credits: anon

#6 Having Parents That Often Argue

I remember me and my little sister would have been about 6 and 8. We sat at the top of the stairs, listening to our parents argue, made ourselves dinner and put ourselves to bed.

And she said ‘it’s like we’re their mummy and daddy’ and that memory breaks my heart a bit.

Image credits: Lauzzzzzza

#7 Realizing That Other Families Left The Chores For Women

When my husband told me his mom was the only person that cleaned up while her “boys” went outside after meals.

I was raised by my parents to do the dishes but also to expect help from everybody in the house. My reproductive parts don’t dictate who cleans. My parents raised three women to say “FU to misogyny”. I have 2 girls and a son now and I made it painfully clear that our children will all know they are more than what his parents raised him to believe.

Image credits: lostintranslation199

#8 Being Raised By A Single Parent

I was born to a strong, independent single mom. My father passed away of ALS when I was infant. My mom never remarried. I realized from a pretty young age my family situation was not like most. Like my mom treated me more like a friend than a son. She gave serious credence to my opinions and let me do basically whatever I wanted so long as it wasn't illegal or cruel.

Image credits: Flaky-Fellatio

#9 Having A Very Conflict-Filled Family

All of the arguing. My parents would have all-out screaming matches in front of us, complete with my dad throwing s**t or breaking things (most infamously, an ornate vase that my mom was given by her late grandmother). I was too young to know anything else, and would always end up hiding in my closet with my baby brother until things had cooled off. In hindsight it makes my heart hurt to remember how scared we were.

Image credits: injury_minded

#10 Parents Giving Their Children The "Silent Treatment"

Our parents would give my brother and me "the silent treatment":

They wouldn't speak to us for hours or days at a time, and *never* tell us what they were upset about.

Their goal was to make us feel guilty and ashamed without ever actually making clear what we had supposedly done wrong.

Image credits: Back2Bach

#11 Other Families Telling Each Other They Love Them

when I realized that other families tell each other they love each other lmao.

Image credits: anon

#12 Realising That The Word You Used To Say Is A Slur

When I was at a friend's house and his mother told me to not say the "N" word because it was a bad word to say.

I didn't know, I had heard it all my life. this was in the late 70's.

Image credits: Feels2old

#13 Realizing That The Person You Loved The Most Isn't Your Biological Father

Around the age of 11. My mother passed away when i was 9 and i found out she had cheated on her husband(my dad)and than she was pregnant with me. (She already had other kids with him) When i was around 4-5 she left him for my biological father(just that kind of selfish jerk with anger issues..) and after she died we had to do DNA test and it turned out the person i loved the most wasn't even my "real" dad.. i can't even imagine how he had to feel. And from that time i wasn't able to see him that much, but the side of family, of my biological father hate me so much(mainly his mother) we had to live here for 2 years and she really did let me know that no one wanted me to be alive and i just ruined everything by being born..

Image credits: martin28000

#14 Talking Back To Their Mother And Not Being Punished

My friend talked back to his mom so casually and I thought that she was gonna do something but she didn’t.

If I talked back to my mom I would’ve gotten the belt

Image credits: MusicIsLife003

#15 Never Feeling Compassion From Parents

The first time was when I heard my friend in college tell his dad he loved him at the end of a phone call. My dad has said it to me maybe three times in my life.

Real eye-opener was in therapy when I realized I never felt true love or even support or compassion from them. Cutting them off was easy because I was never made to feel like I was allowed to need help from either of my parents after the age of maybe twelve.

I wish I could empathize with how my wife feels about missing her dad (he died very young). I'm as supportive and helpful as I can be, but I have no strong feelings about the idea of never seeing my parents again.

Image credits: sausagegravyx2

#16 Having A Mother With A Hoarding Disorder

My Mom was a hoarder. I hated for my friends and boyfriends to come in my house but her and my step dad insisted. I was treated like trash because everyone knew what a filthy place I lived in. People would say why don’t y’all clean that place up? Well, because hoarders won’t let you clean it up. Every time, we tried, she would throw a huge fit, so we stopped trying.

Image credits: Artistic_Duck8300

#17 Finding Out That Not All Kids Are Afraid Of Their Parents

When I stopped homeschooling and I met other kids that weren't afraid of their parents.

Image credits: Aperture_T

#18 Short Family Dinners And Fake Conversations

Family dinners last no longer than 10 minutes, including holidays.

Conversations don't really sound genuine and insightful. More like, just acknowledging eachother's existences.

No natural bonding over anything, everything feels forced.

Not very inclusive in any degree, just feels like we don't want eachother in our businesses.

The ever present tension between members that suggests anything could break down in a minute's notice. And they will.

Image credits: anon

#19 Always Getting Blamed For Everything

As a kid my friends used to tell me my mom (adopted single no A father) hated me. I never really understood why until I processed the trauma she caused me as an adult. That it wasn't normal to always be blamed for everything, told how much she wished she never adopted me, never being hug loved on or any affection, or A home cooked meal. I thank every day for my Pappaw as he was the only one I felt truly believed in me. I left home at 13 an haven't looked back.

Image credits: Bustyblues420

#20 Having A Huge Family

When a guest or whoever it is joins us for an evening and at some point through the night you look over to them and they're sitting in their seat just staring around the room, a look of confusion and shock on their face while trying to figure out wtf is going on and attempting to make sense of things.

For context when I say my family I'm including aunties, uncles and cousins. We get together once a week at my grandmother's house and it can get pretty overwhelming if you're not used to it. There's about 30 of us in total. The youngest person is 2 y.o and the eldest is 82

Image credits: Sycou

#21 Discovering That Some Children Are Excited To See Their Dad Come Home

When I realized some kids are excited to see their
Dad come home from work. As opposed to me and my brother going to our rooms and shutting our doors when we heard the garage open

Image credits: EdgeMiserable4381

#22 Having Parents That Are Still Married

When I got to college and most of my friends parents were divorced. That was an eye opener. A lot of people were astounded my parents were still married and a lot assumed they were divorced around the holidays. It was wild coming from my parents who have been together for 40 years and my grandparents who were together for 73.

Image credits: Sanguiniutron

#23 Fearing That A Parent Will Show Up Drunk At School

i can’t remember what he was talking about but when a teacher in middle school said “it’s not like they’re going to announce over the intercom “so and do’s dad is drunk on school premises please send them down to the office” and all the other kids laughed like it was a joke but it was an actual fear of mine

Image credits: spacestonerbitch-420

#24 Discovering That Every Family Is Different

When I started socializing with other kids, about kindergarten and forward, I realized that not everyone lives the same way I and my family do. Some had it better. Some were about the same. Some had it worse. Also, when the family gossip and secrets started coming out as I got into my teens, I realized that my family has a lot of skeletons in the closet that I refuse to inherit.

Image credits: anon

#25 Realizing That Your Family Is Indeed Weird

When my friends would meet my family for the first time and go "Okay, your family actually IS weird, you weren't kidding!"

Image credits: Nonsenseinabag

#26 Realizing That Other Families Don't Hit Their Children

When my friend’s mom talked to him about something he did wrong instead of smacking him around and getting yelled at.

Image credits: ok_koreal

#27 Not Having A Close-Knit Family

When I started my own family. My girlfriends family are all so close ,they always have big birthdays and everyone's there, they call each other and show concern when somethings wrong , they help us out even when we don't ask , even ask me how everything's going in my life and how's work and what not. I never got that from anyone in my family not even a simple" I love you"

Image credits: ghost06669

#28 Finding Out That Not All Parents Drive Their Kids Around

When I found out that it was not normal that all parents drive around their kids, take them to soccer practice, to friends' houses, fetch them at the bus stop when it's cold outside and the next bus takes over 30 minutes to arrive, fetch them at 3 am from a party, things like that. Made me appreciate my parents even more.

Image credits: pigirl666

#29 Families That Often Disagree With Each Other

My parents are exactly like George Costanza’s parents. It’s impossible for either one of them to make it through any story if there is a date, time, location or anything that they might disagree upon and bicker about mid story. When I hear other peoples parents communicate I feel like my brain is getting a massage.

Image credits: Studflood

#30 Seeing Other Kids Draw Their Dads With Happy Faces

When I was a kid I would always draw my dad with an angry face. It was weird seeing other people draw everyone happy in their crayon drawings.

Image credits: navarii-uwu

#31 Never Eating Dinner At The Dinner Table

We never eat at the dinner table ever

Image credits: -DarknessNLight-

#32 Having An Extremely Controlling Family

Pretty early. We weren't allowed certain books, TV, movies, or music.

Anything "unwholesome" was pretty much banned, and I would regularly hang out at friends houses to get round the rules.

LOTR, CoN, Hardy Boys, Scooby-Doo, Nancy Drew, Boxcar Children, Transformers, He-Man all ok for some reason, but BTTF, Harry Potter, MTG, Pokémon, D&D all verboten.

Image credits: GoodDave

#33 Dad That Loved A Good Head Massage

No one else's dad liked to sit on the floor by the couch and have their mom rub his head every night.

Image credits: notjawn

#34 Constant Vacations Abroad

Realized that constantly taking international vacations isn’t normal. Used to go on family vacations all the time during the summer, and was shocked that all of my friends usually stay home or at most spend a week in California. We are not super wealthy but we are definitely well-off compared to my friends

Image credits: CoconutFade

#35 Never Being Able To See A Doctor Because Of The Potential Bill

When I never saw a doctor.
Any serious illness was a reason to be stressed about a bill.

I spent weekends hanging out in bars with my Dad as a little kid.

Feeding me on lunch on weekends was something that always took my caregivers by shock and surprise.
If we went on a day trip lunch was never offered or packed.

My well-being, and moral compass was rarely considered.

I'm so glad I'm ending this generational toxicity with my own kids.

Image credits: Spiritual_Lemonade

#36 Never Being Picked Up From School

When they never picked me from school. I always got picked by other friend's moms or my parents'friends or lately I just go alone.

Image credits: STJ41