People Reveal The Most Ridiculous Family Rules They Have Encountered

Published 1 year ago

Most households with kids have rules in place to act as guidelines on acceptable codes of conduct. Enforcing those rules is like treading a fine line though. If you don’t have them you may end up in total chaos, but if you’re too strict you’ll end up with a rebellion. So rules need to be sensible and fair otherwise it just looks like the person making the rules is either ridiculous or on a power trip.

Recently, YouTuber and Redditor u/SalMinellaOnYouTube, asked the r/AskReddit community about the ‘most ridiculous rule’ they’ve ever dealt with or heard of in someone’s house, family or kids. This sparked a discussion online where folks outed the most bizarre rules some parents have come up with when trying to keep things under control and we’ve shared some of the most outrageous ones below. 

More info: Reddit

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Image source: SeaStarless, Artem Podrez

When I was a kid, I spent a lot of time at my best friend’s house. Her mom wouldn’t let us drink more than one glass of water in the afternoon because she thought it would dilute the nutrients in our body. Instead she gave us 7-up if we we were thirsty. I ended up secretly drinking water out of the bathroom faucet every time I used the bathroom when I was thirsty at her house.


My kid had a friend over recently (high school) and we offered him a snack. He said maybe, is that allowed? Then he mentioned getting an A on a test so we said, then you deserve am extra special after school snack. We offered several options like cereal, goldfish crackers, etc. He cried because no one had ever offered an after school snack, much less said good job on an A. So sad.

Image source: FloridaParalegal


Image source: TobyOFM, lisaclarke

When I was younger, a friend said that we weren’t allowed to watch Spongebob. I found out later on that, allegedly, this is because the holes in SpongeBob induce lustful thoughts.


I went to visit a college roomate’s family, and everyone had to go to bed at 8 pm because that was the youngest daughter’s bedtime. The kid was 8 or 9 years old.

I laughed because I thought they were joking, but the kid threw a tantrum that I wasn’t going to bed. They weren’t kidding. I did, obviously, but wtf?

The next day the parents told me it would be best if I just head on back to college a day early. Yeah, no kidding, bye!

My roommate thought I was the a*****e.

I laughed at her too.

Image source: AhFFSImTooOldForThis


Image source: Secret_Agent_666, Greg Rivers

I knew a guy who, in his 20s, still had a bedtime enforced. He had to be in bed by 8pm, and if he was sleeping over at a friend’s house (in this case at my house during my 21st birthday party) he had to phone his dad at 8pm to say he was going to bed (he didn’t go to bed though at least).


Image source: MindRacer789, Alexander Grey

My friend’s parents ran a ‘tab’ for him and his brother. They added up how much they spent on food, clothes, sports, etc. and told the two boys that’s how much they would have to pay them back. I remember once we got yelled at for eating his dad’s ‘snacks’ and he added it to the tab.

When they graduated, the parents ‘cleared the tab’ for their graduation gift, so basically they got nothing other than a reminder of how much they cost.


Image source: khalavaster, Karolina Grabowska

That guests have to pay for their stay… They invited me for dinner, then calculated how many minutes I was over, charged for my portion of food, drink, electricity and water usage. Yes, they counted toilet flushing and timed me on hand washing.

I could never do this to anyone.


Image source: whoopysnorp, Aleks Dorohovich

There was a kid in my neighborhood growing up that was not allowed to chew gum. He soaked a piece of leather in sugar water and chomped on that. His parents were some strange religious nuts. They would scream about the devil if you knocked on their door Halloween night.


Image source: Late-Ad-3136, cottonbro studio

My best friend growing up, had to walk around her house on her tippy toes, because her parents couldn’t stand hearing her footsteps.


Image source: bergalore, Dan DeAlmeida

My house growing up: if you had to go to the bathroom during a family meal, your plate was taken away and dinner was over for you. No bathroom during meals!


Image source: Cucumbrsandwich, Julia M Cameron

In college I worked on a project with a girl who had to call her mother every time she relocated on campus. Like, when she left a location and then again when she arrived at the next location. So when she moved from the cafeteria to the library, or when we took a break to go get a coffee and when we left to go back to our dorms, when class started, when she left class, Had to call her mom. I avoided her for the rest of college.


Image source: Debstar76, Anton Danilov

My sister gave away a Spider-Man toy that I gave my nephew as a birthday present. His older sister told me “mum says that we’re not allowed false idols in the house” they’re really fundamentalist Christians.


Image source: Icy-Control9525, CA Creative

My great uncle only allowed one bowl, one plate,one spoon, one fork, one knife, one cup, and one light bulb in his house. He was married with three kids. He ate first, then the wife, then the kids by age. When he went to another room, the light bulb followed.


Image source: HumanAverse, SuckerPunch Gourmet

Pickle time. My aunt was getting her degree in early childhood education/development and went overboard with scheduling my cousins life to the nth degree. When I would visit I wasn’t allowed to go into the fridge for a pickle “unless it’s pickle time. Right but isn’t pickle time.” We were preteens.

I waited until she went to the bathroom and took the whole jar of pickles into my cousin’s room and played Nintendo and ate all the f*****g pickles


I was five and at a friend’s house. We were playing in leaves outside. There was a box of leaves I wanted to move closer to his box of leaves. My box had no bottom, so the leaves spilled out into a small pile. He went and told his mother, she came out and spanked me, quite hard. I ran home crying to my Mom, partly because it hurt and partly because of the injustice. She comforted me, but didn’t do much else (or so I thought). I learned, decades later, my Mom called up the spanker and told her to never lay a hand on any of her children ever again.

Image source: Utterlybored


Image source: TheCell1990, nrd

My wife once had a friend over for a sleepover when she was little. Suddenly, their mum showed up to take them home. Apparently, the friend had seen beer in the fridge and called her mum crying because of it. They were not allowed to look at, talk about, think about, and especially drink beer. Scared her so much that she called her mum to come get her


Wasn’t necessarily a rule, but I had a good friend who’s mom had locks installed on all the kitchen cabinets to prevent her only child from eating when he wasn’t supposed to. When he got old enough to earn money, she took 50% of what ever he made. His senior year in high school when he turned 18 he came home from school and found all his belongings out in the driveway (Happy Birthday, child). My mom and dad let him live with us till he could financially get on his feet.

Image source: wyoflyboy68


Image source: kefkaeatsbabies, Victoria Akvarel

My parents will swear up and down that none of these actually happened, but they:

Didn’t let us watch Rugrats because the way they talk about adults is ‘vile’.

Picked me up from a sleepover at 1 am and spanked me in front of my friends because they found a picture of Brittney spears hidden under my bunk bed which led to the only Christian radio stations rule.

Grounded me for a month for one episode of ren and stimpy, which led to the no Nickelodeon ever, house rule.

Power rangers was obviously straight from Satan, so that was out.

I brought home some homework about evolution in 7th grade and my dad burned it, and took the ashes to my science teacher. This was when the ‘only god approved science’ house rules started.

The ‘Dont make a single noise after 8 pm, including the microwave beeping, ever, and tip toe so you don’t get interrogated’ Rule, was unspoken but very well understood.

Forced me to wear jesus shirts to middle school with all my skater friends, which got me bullied for years, which led to the very obvious follow-up rule: If you are told it isn’t happening, then it can’t possibly be happening.

List goes on…

Religious folks are f****n weird.


My stepmom had a totally bonkers rule about feet. She was irrationally afraid of plantar warts and, according to her, anyone she didn’t know intimately had plantar warts. As a family we had a second home/beach house that was basically a small bungalow and only had one restroom with one stall shower. Nobody, no friends, relatives, could use that shower after the beach because they’ll get their plantar wart all over the floor and then she’ll take a shower and she’ll get plantar warts. We also had a swimming pool and she would make new people, including children, WEAR SOCKS IN THE SWIMMING POOL. And as far as I know, nobody living in our house including her ever had plantar warts so… unreasonable? Sure. Effective? Sure.

Image source: Sister_Christina


When we were 13, a friend of mine was kicked out of the house by his parents for a week because he stacked things wrong in the freezer, and some bread got squished.

He spent the week staying at different friends’ houses each night until his parents let him come back home.

EDIT: holy moly, this got a lot of action. For those wondering what kind of parents my friend had…

The mom was super religious and tended to be pretty strict, but tried, unsuccessfully, to hide it when any of our group were at their house. The stepdad wasn’t allowed to have much input when it came to any punishments because he wasn’t the bio dad. My friend and his sister were always punished pretty much immediately by the mom, and step dad would just kinda disappear. Regardless of the error made, the punishments would build until she would snap and say something like, “get out of my house, i don’t want to see your face!”

She was definitely verbally and emotionally abusive, but i never saw signs of physical abuse.

There were multiple occurances of me or other friends going to spend the night and being sent back home shortly after because she was in a bad mood and my friend didn’t have his room clean enough for her liking.

i.e. a plate and fork on the dresser from breakfast

Or a couple clothing items on the floor

Image source: Disastrous-Manager95

Shanilou Perera

Shanilou has always loved reading and learning about the world we live in. While she enjoys fictional books and stories just as much, since childhood she was especially fascinated by encyclopaedias and strangely enough, self-help books. As a kid, she spent most of her time consuming as much knowledge as she could get her hands on and could always be found at the library. Now, she still enjoys finding out about all the amazing things that surround us in our day-to-day lives and is blessed to be able to write about them to share with the whole world as a profession.

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family rules, home rules, house rules, ridiculous family rules, ridiculous rules
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