20 Old Parenting Tricks Moms Still Use (But Shouldn't)

There is nothing better than calling our mom and asking her for parenting advice. Maybe our kid is refusing to eat anything other than Cheerios and grapes and we want to know what she did when we went through a similar picky eating stage. Or maybe we want to throw a big birthday party and are feeling a bit stressed out and we know that only our mom can calm us down.

Our own moms are a wealth of knowledge and expertise once we have babies. They know so much and they have gone through everything that we're currently experiencing. But that doesn't mean, of course, that every piece of parenting advice that we hear is something that we should follow. This goes for some advice we might get from relatives, neighbors, or online. There are many things that parents have been doing since forever that aren't the best idea at all. In fact, some of these tips are the exact opposite of what we want to do.

Sometimes, moms use certain tips and tricks because they make the day a little bit easier, but there are many that we should be avoiding while raising our kids. Here are 20 old-fashioned parenting tricks that moms still use but shouldn't.

Continue scrolling to keep reading

Click the button below to start this article in quick view

Start Now

20 No Play Time With Kids (Because They Have A Brother Or Sister For That)


Many parents of previous generations have believed that there's no reason or need to play with kids. If they have multiple children, then the children can play together and keep each other company.

This is definitely an old-fashioned parenting trick that moms shouldn't follow today. Sure, it's really nice when siblings can share toys and spend a quiet hour doing a puzzle together. But even if siblings actually get along and consider each other friends, moms should still sit on the floor and play on a regular basis. Kids love that and it's really important to have that quality family time.

19 Not Using A Car Seat


According to Popsugar, another old-fashioned parenting trick is to not use a car seat.

Moms know that this is a bad idea. And, yes, it's a bad idea even if we say that we're just driving a few blocks or not going very far. Babies and toddlers need to be in car seats for a very good, important reason: because it's the only safe thing to do.

If anyone tells us that it's okay not to use car seats and that we're worrying too much about this, we can say that this is the choice that we're making because we know that it's safe.

18 Letting Babies "Cry It Out"


Essential Baby mentions another piece of old-fashioned parenting advice: letting babies "cry it out."

Back in the day, many moms felt that it was best to let babies cry for hours without going over to see if they're okay. They felt that babies shouldn't be coddled and that moms shouldn't pay so much attention to them. They also thought that it was better for babies to experience periods of crying without being attended to.

We can all agree that we don't think this way, right? I believe that moms should always go over to their crying babies and see what's going on.

17 Stop Holding Your Crying Baby


Here's another old-fashioned parenting trick that we should ignore. Thanks to Brightside, we know that back in the day, moms wouldn't hold their babies when they were crying. Yes, moms actually felt that this was the best thing to do.

It's very old-fashioned to think that crying babies should be left alone. That's just not how moms roll these days. We totally believe that we need to hold crying babies so we can soothe them and make them feel better. After all, a baby can't exactly tell us what they're feeling or what's wrong, so it's our job as moms to help them out and be able to translate.

16 Dressing A Baby In Tons Of Layers


Popsugar says that some old-fashioned moms believe in dressing babies in tons of layers.

Moms who are bringing their kids today wouldn't agree with this parenting decision and would definitely say that it's too old-school. We would be concerned that our babies would start sweating too much and that they would be wearing too many clothes.

Every mom has heard a total stranger say something along the lines of, "Shouldn't your baby be wearing a hat? It's cold out." This unsolicited advice is never welcome, and we know that our babies are warm enough without needing to wear five layers of clothing at once.

15 Giving Kids Chocolate Milk Because It's A "Healthy" Choice

Swim Team Lifestyle

According to Redbook magazine, an old-school parenting trick is to give children chocolate milk. Why? Because it's a healthy choice. And, hey, if kids drink more milk because it's sweet and we tell them that it's full of chocolate, isn't this a good thing?

Moms shouldn't use this trick today because chocolate milk isn't actually healthy. It's full of too much sugar and could lead to kids asking for candy, chocolate, and desserts since they're used to having sugar all the time. We know a lot more about health and nutrition today, and we know that regular milk is a better choice, along with water. Many moms agree that even fruit juice is too sweet.

14 Never Kiss A Baby Because Of Germs


According to Brightside, in the past, moms used to say that you shouldn't kiss a baby because of germs. As the website explains, "Doctors and psychologists continue to debate about this topic. Some claim that oral and viral diseases can be transmitted through kisses, others say that kisses are necessary for the development of a child. Most mothers don’t listen to experts and understand by themselves that the baby needs love, and kisses and hugs are one of the best ways to express it."

We've definitely kissed our babies, and we're not worried about it at all. How can we resist when they're so cute?!

13 Giving Kids Sugary Treats To Win Them Over/Get Them To Do Something


Parenting.com mentions another old-fashioned parenting trick: giving kids sugar in order to get them to behave or do something.

All moms have done this at least once because it can seem like no big deal. Our kids are fighting more than usual and we've run out of patience so we give them each a chocolate chip cookie, or our daughter is having a tough time in the grocery store and we buy them a candy bar after they've asked us ten times. The problem, of course, is that our kids will get used to this and will want to eat treats all the time. We don't want them to think that they don't have to behave unless we give them sugar.

12 Giving Kids Way Too Many Chores


Many moms think that giving kids chores is a really good thing. Chores teach discipline, the importance of hard work, and following through when you say that you're going to do something.

It's easy to see the benefits, but at the same time, moms shouldn't overload their kids with too many chores. This isn't a good idea because kids need to be kids. Moms should be nourishing their imaginations and giving them lots of time to play and have fun. If we give our kids just a few chores, like setting the table or making their bed, we'll see that they enjoy doing a job well done but aren't getting too stressed out.

11 Being Cool With Children Playing Outside On Their Own


We often hear people say that back in the day, kids played outside all the time. Moms would send them off on a summer morning and kids wouldn't return until dinner... and even then, moms would have to basically beg for their children to come sit at the table because they were having so much fun.

The idea of kids playing outside is definitely old-fashioned. Today, things are different and many kids are spending more time indoors, playing video games, using iPads, or just playing in general. But although it's good for kids to get fresh air, moms shouldn't let their kids play outside without any supervision. It's dangerous and parents need to pay attention when their kids are outside.

10 Saying "Just One More Bite" To Get Kids To Eat Dinner (And Vegetables)

Cooking Light

Let's raise our hands if we've sat at the dinner table and told our kids, "Just one more bite." Our hands are totally raised, right?

All moms do this sometimes, but this is another old-fashioned parenting trick that we really shouldn't use. Telling kids to eat one more bite of broccoli (or telling them that they can't have dessert until they finish their dinner) doesn't help them at all. It makes them think that eating is a chore and doesn't teach them the importance of eating healthy and enjoying your food. There are other ways to get kids to eat more, like finding foods that they prefer over others, and having them help cook.

9 Lying To Kids So They Won't Get Upset


Parenting.com mentions another old-fashioned parenting trick: lying to kids so they don't get upset.

We've probably all done this, too, and while we might consider these little white lies, they don't help kids in the long run. Parents should definitely be open and honest with their little ones. Kids thrive when their parents talk to them about everything that's going on. While we want to protect our children from anything bad and harsh, we can't protect them from everything. It's better to avoid this trick and just be straight with them (and keep the lines of communication open if they're upset or feeling anything negative).

8 Telling Kids To Eat Everything On Their Plate

Reader's Digest

Of a list of old-fashioned parenting beliefs that moms shouldn't follow today, Mnn.com writes about parents telling kids to eat everything on their plate.

This is something that many parents have been saying for so many decades. We might remember our own moms telling us this (or even other relatives). While of course we want our children to eat a proper portion at dinner, it's not a good idea to insist that they eat everything that is in front of them. The problem is that it could encourage overeating or make kids think that they should eat even when they're not hungry.

7 Only Breastfeed Until A Certain Point


Mademenoire says that moms shouldn't follow the old advice that they need to stop breastfeeding at a certain point.

Today, moms know that you make that personal choice yourself. If you feel that two years is the best time to stop, then by all means, go for it. If you want to stop before that, then that's what you should do. There are no hard and fast rules about breastfeeding anymore and many women choose to breastfeed longer than previous generations might have. Moms do what they feel is the right thing for their family instead of listening to guidelines.

6 Over-Complimenting Kids For Everything


As Madamenoire.com puts it, "Should your child receive praise for a job really well done? Of course! Should he be told he’s the king of the world and the best at something for every teeny, tiny, mundane thing he does? Probably not. That’s how narcissists are made."

Kids don't need to hear compliments all day long. Sure, we love our children and think super highly of them. We swear that no kid is smarter or funnier or more adorable. And we definitely don't think that other kids can accomplish all of the things that they do (though, of course, we would never actually say this out loud). It's better to compliment our kids when they really deserve it.

5 Being Overly Concerned About Having Kids Who Aren't Spoiled

Parents Magazine

Parents of previous generations have been overly concerned about raising kids who aren't spoiled. This is something that has informed many of their parenting choices.

No mom wants their kid to be spoiled. Our kids ask us for certain toys at Christmas or for birthdays, and we don't want to disappoint them or break their little hearts.

But moms today don't need to be so worried about this. We can buy our kids gifts and toys and still talk to them about being polite and appreciating everything. It seems unfair to have kids miss out on gifts and toys because we don't want them to be spoiled.

4 Telling Kids To Go To Their Bedrooms When In Trouble


Mnn.com says that another old-fashioned parenting trick that wouldn't work now is telling kids to go to their bedrooms because they're in trouble.

How many times did we hear "Go your room" when we were growing up? Maybe our parents said this every time we misbehaved or they used it less often. Either way, we probably didn't love hearing this, and it probably didn't make much of an impression. A lot of moms think that it's better to talk to kids about what happened instead of just having kids go away.

3 The Statement "Because I Said So"


Is there a bigger cliche than a parent telling their child to do something "because I said so?" Probably not, right?

This is a phrase that almost every parent has said at least once in their parenting journey, if not much more often than that. It just slips out and seems to work for every situation. Do we want our kids to make their bed? Go to school? Wash their hands before dinner? Why not follow these questions up with "Because I said so"?

We know that kids don't like hearing this statement and that we should stop saying it. It can be a tough habit to break, but we can say almost anything else and our kids will be happier.

2 Not Giving Kids Healthy, So-Called Grown-Up Food Choices


As Madamenoire notes, thinking that kids will only eat so-called "kid food" is really old-fashioned. The website says, "Kids food is okay for toddlers and very young children, but let’s not indulge children’s demands for nothing but [franks] and grilled cheese sandwiches when they’re ten years old. It’s important to get them in the habit of eating adult food and trying new things early."

Although our kids might not be asking for kale chips the way that they ask for chocolate chip cookies and ice cream, we can still encourage them to try new vegetables and other foods. We never know what they might like.

1 Timeouts

VeryWell Family

Mnn.com also says that timeouts are an old-fashioned parenting technique that don't work anymore. Moms definitely want to think twice about these.

Many moms feel that timeouts aren't the way to go when it comes to helping children deal with misbehaving. We can probably agree since having kids go sit in a corner doesn't seem like it would do anything but make them feel bad.

While there are some parenting decisions that will never go out of style, like loving our kids and hugging them when they're having a nightmare, we can avoid these 20 things because they're just too old-fashioned.

Sources: Popsugar.com, Madamenoire.com, Brightside.meBlog.oldfashionedmotherhood.com, Essentialbaby.com.au, Redbookmag.com, Thisisinsider.com, Parenting.comMnn.comScarymommy.com, Whoabella.com

More in Did You Know...