Okay, look, we’ve all been there. Anyone whose spent any amount of time with a kid finds themselves wondering why are kids so annoying? Well, there’s a thousand answers- but here are our favorites.
We love our kids. We promise we do. But come on, we all know it- kids can be REALLY frigging annoying sometimes.
From the everyday- clothes out of the hamper! arguing with their brother! not liking their dinner!- to the extra special- I don’t want to have a belly button! you cut my sandwich wrong! I want to wear my raincoat in 100 degree weather!- there is ALWAYS something about kids that could get really, really annoying.
So if you find yourself wondering why are kids so annoying? Well first, take a deep breath. You aren’t alone.
And then check out this list of reasons kids are so annoying, from two moms who have BEEN THERE.
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So…Why Are Kids So Annoying?
Okay, so first up let’s look at the science- why ARE kids so annoying?
Well, most of kids’ annoying behaviors stem from their extreme neediness. Basically, they need us to survive. There’s a biological imperative to get those needs met, and sometimes that looks really annoying: repeated requests, whining, crying, and just having a high level of need throughout the day.
Also, kids REALLY like attention. Kids don’t always care whether that attention is positive or negative, and they’ll do lots of things just to get a rise out of you. Reacting to unwanted behaviors is sometimes reinforcing- meaning that kids will keep doing that annoying thing over and over again.
Kids also have a high level of sensory needs (some more than others). For example, my son makes repetitive high pitched noises whenever he’s not getting enough sensory input. Which fills his need- and happens to annoy the ever loving daylights out of me.
It doesn’t really matter WHY kids are so annoying though, does it? We just know we’re annoyed (and that’s okay too).
5 Reasons Why Kids Are So Annoying
Okay, let’s break it down- why ARE kids so annoying?
They Are Incredibly Messy Creatures
Kids inherently lack the executive functioning skills needed to stay organized. They forget what they’re doing, have a hard time following through with projects, and are not interested in cleaning up.
That leaves parents with two options- clean up after them (annoying!) or constantly guide (force) them through the clean up process themselves (annoying but make it USEFUL).
It’s tough to be living in constant messes, and it’s totally normal to be irritated by that.
They Are Frustratingly Particular
Kids like sameness. They like routine. They want to wear their purple leggings again even if they just wore them yesterday and they don’t CARE if there’s spaghetti sauce on the knee!
They want the red cup, not the blue one. The black toy car is slightly faster than the yellow one. And this blueberry is sour, and they wanted it to be sweet.
Kids are inherently self-centered, and it’s very hard for them to see other people’s perspectives. If their needs aren’t met, it’s REALLY hard for them not to see this as a personal attack.
They want what they want, and they do not care to hear your (very logical!) reasoning about why they can’t always get it when they want it.
What They Want Doesn’t Always Make Sense
When my daughter was six, she used to get SO mad that I wouldn’t let her “have” the empty boutique on the corner to run her own fashion empire. Like…what?
Kids also get mad that you won’t leave them at home by themselves, let them use the matches, let them drive the car, etc. etc. etc.
Look kiddos, we get that this is frustrating- but kids’ wants are in NO way aligned with safe, modern parenting practices. So whine and try to annoy me all you want, but I am NOT letting you use the butcher knife today.
They Are Really Loud
Kids love when the music is turned up, the TV is blaring, AND the annoying toys are all going off at once. They laugh loudly, cry loudly, and scream for (honestly!) no good reason at all.
This is heavily incompatible with my near-middle-age desire to sit in solemn silence for many hours a day.
So pair that need for ALL THE NOISE with the need for as little noise as humanly possible? Someone (probably everyone) in this scenario is going to be super annoyed.
Their Social Skills Kind of Suck
Look, they’re trying. But asking for things nicely, using some tact, and apologizing when they’re wrong is REALLY hard for them.
They are very much works in progress, and we get that. But that doesn’t mean I can’t get annoyed that they (always!) forget to say thank you and (never!) remember to say please.
How to Deal with Annoying Kids
So yeah, kids just are really annoying. We know they’re trying, and we know it’s our job to help them through this tricky part of childhood where their social-emotional skills are just not up to par with ours.
We’ll teach them better habits, learn together, and practice, practice, practice.
And while we’re dong that, we’ll also:
- Squeeze in Some Self Care (in Less Than 5 Minutes!)
- Meditate. (Ew, not like FOR REAL. These things are just meditation-like, but way more fun. And many of them can be done with annoying kids still in the room.)
- Get a good pair of noise-cancelling headphones for when you just cannot.
- Find someplace fun for our kids to go, without us.
- Throw some fun-mom moments in there so they won’t remember how annoyed you get with them once they’re grown up.
- Take deep breaths. They’ll only be little for a little while, and this too shall pass.
So look, we don’t necessarily know WHY kids are so annoying, but we do know that the truth is, sometimes they just are. It doesn’t make us love them any less and it doesn’t mean we want to change them.
We just want to acknowledge that yes, kids can be really annoying, and we still love them just the same.
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