10 Things You May Regret About Having Kids & 10 Ways To Cope

10 Things You May Regret About Having Kids & 10 Ways To Cope

As rewarding as children are, raising them is the hardest thing you’ll do in life. It’s all well and good to read books beforehand and attend Lamaze classes, but one of the roughest parts of parenthood can come far later—regret. Many people can feel it but very few discuss it, so we’re here to break down 10 things you may regret about having children and what you can do about it. 

1. Constant Care

No one can truly prepare you for how much work children are. Tantrums, crying, diapers, no alone time, and constant touching are just some of the everyday events you’ll have to deal with—and you won’t truly understand their weight until you live them. 

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2. Losing Your Identity

When you’re a parent, it’s hard for society to see you as anything else. Unfortunately, parents frequently experience a loss of identity outside their parenthood, which can easily feel like a loss of self. 

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3. Stressing About Money

There’s no two ways about it, childcare is expensive. Even outside of new clothes and daycare, children also need food, diapers, toys, and basic necessities like car seats and high chairs (among many other things). Toss in your own expenses and money suddenly seems impossible to come by.

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4. Strained Relationship

Young children need all kinds of care and attention, which weighs heavily on a relationship. Marriages can sometimes become strained or end altogether and you may be left to pick up the pieces while raising a child. 

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5. Being Ill-Prepared

An ideal nuclear family is hardly ever in the stars—children come with their own struggles and needs, which sometimes means mental illness or physical ailments. Though no parent wants to see their child suffer, it’s even harder to prepare for the worst should it happen. 

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6. No Days Off

You can’t call in sick to parenthood. Whether you’re burned out or under the weather, children require constant care and can’t exactly relax all day with you. Knowing you’ll never have the same kind of downtime can get exhausting. 

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7. Minimal Relaxation

Oh, you’d like to lie down and have a snack? Maybe just take a coffee break? We hope your kids aren’t in the room because neither is happening otherwise. Your kids love you too (maybe a little too much) and that usually means they’ll follow you everywhere…and we do mean everywhere. 

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8. Loss of Sleep

Sleep deprivation is another phenomenon no one can truly prepare you for. Sure, we’ve all pulled an all-nighter, but months of no sleep not only wears you down but your relationship as well. The good news is that the phase passes—but you still need to make it to the other side. 

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9. Being Misunderstood

Trying to voice your concerns can fall on deaf ears. Not everyone will understand your fatigue, which can make it even harder to try and cope with your feelings. 

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10. It’s Hard

Parenthood is simultaneously the most rewarding and hardest experience of your life. Read all the books, speak to every parent—at the end of the day, your journey is your own and you can only ready yourself so much. 

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Don’t forget that your feelings are legitimate and there are coping mechanisms to help you through. 


1. Listen to Yourself

What you’re feeling isn’t new and you needn’t go through it alone. Be sure you listen to yourself in moments of overwhelm because burying them won’t do you or your family any favors. 

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2. Speak to a Therapist

The right therapist can help you discover appropriate coping strategies, which is best for you and your child. If you feel like you can’t do it alone, it makes more sense to speak with a professional than to suffer in silence. 

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3. Recognize Burnout vs. Regret

Sometimes burnout and regret look oddly similar, especially when both tend to make you feel guilty—but there is a difference. Try and give yourself a break from the kids; ask your partner to take over for the day or see if your inlaws can watch them for a weekend while you and your partner get away. Coming back refreshed can give a new perspective, and you may have just needed time to yourself. 

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4. Build a Support System

Even though it feels like you’re alone in this, so many parents feel the same way. Whether it’s through online support groups or approaching trusted people in your life, build a support system that hears your concerns. Knowing others truly understand can make all the difference. 

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5. Talk to Your Partner

You need to speak with your partner whenever you feel burned out or any kind of regret. It won’t be an easy conversation, but it will be a crucial one that helps all of you. Your partner may also have no idea what you’re going through, so telling them what’s going on lets them know you need a little more support. 

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6. Work on Stress Levels

It’s easier said than done, but with the help of your partner or family you should aim to keep stress down. Try and take a bath or get a moment of quiet to yourself. There are also breathing techniques to help you relax your mind in stressful situations. 

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7. Forget About Perfection

Don’t worry about being the perfect parent because there’s no such thing. Mistakes are a part of life and even if you feel like you’re not doing a good job, every parent has made their own mistakes—you’re not alone. 

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8. Take Breaks

No matter how breaks look to you, try and get them in as often as you can. Even just a moment alone to shower can do wonders for your psyche. Recruit your partner to watch the children while you slip away for a minute. 

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9. Understand Mental Illness

Just like there’s a difference between burnout and regret, there’s a big difference between burnout and depression. If your burnout impedes your everyday life where you can’t get out of bed or start to feel helpless, it might be time to speak to a therapist.  

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10. Don’t Forget About You

Never forget that your feelings are valid. Raising kids is hard and you don’t have to do it alone. Remember to take care of yourself and don’t sacrifice your well-being. 

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