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We all start out in this world knowing nothing about it and looking at it through the childish eyes of innocence, and we usually say and do things that don’t initially appear as something bad. But as we grow and start to see things a little differently, we often realize that some of those things were, to say the least, inappropriate.

Since these incidents usually make for a little embarrassing but mostly funny stories, when someone online asked Redditors to share their similar stories, they didn’t hesitate to start pouring in with answers. Scroll down to see what they wrote!

More info: Reddit

#1

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I liked mixing words up, like saying I'm going to "shake a tower" instead of take a shower.
One of these words I played with was popcorn. I called it cocporn. And worst part is that nobody stopped me.

Prestigious_Pool_575 , Pixabay Report

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PFD
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Well, of course no one stopped them. That would inevitably be followed by "Why?" and holy hell no one's going there

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#2

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I lived in Virginia with my parents but my grandparents and rest of the family lived in Canada. I was 6 visiting my grandparents for the summer and they drove us back to Virginia from Canada. On the way to the border I wanted McDonald’s or something like that. My grandparents wouldn’t get me any and I was salty af. We got to the border and they were asking typical questions. I have a different last name than my grandparents and the border guy asked how I knew them. I told the border guy “I have no idea who these people are.”

My parents had to drive from Virginia to Maine to pick me up……..

Unfair-Sugar548 , Dennis Sylvester Hurd Report

#3

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I was sitting in my front yard singing nonsense out loud while playing with my toy cars.

“DIL DO DIL DO DIL DO DIL A DIL A DILLY DO 🎵”

My Mom came to the window and quietly said “Hey sweetie, try to sing something else okay?”.

Munich11 , Polesie Toys Report

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Kids usually say and do all sorts of things without really understanding them. After all, when we are born, we’re essentially a nearly white sheet of paper, so we learn about the world and everything in it by experiencing it.

However, according to Carrie Shrier of the Michigan State University Extension, since we don’t start off knowing exactly what we should do, we imitate what we see around us. Usually, that involves people closest to us, like our family and peers, as well as things we see in our surroundings. 

We grow up watching the world around us, and that is exactly how we learn all the essential skills, like brushing our teeth and picking up things, as well as speaking, social skills, and independence.

#4

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate When I was a young girl, I used to watch professional wrestling with my older brothers. We also had to go to church (southern baptist). They make prayer lists for people and I raised my hand to ask that the Undertaker be put on the list so that he would win his upcoming match.

thejenglebook , WWE Report

#5

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I was upset because my grandfather didn’t want to play army with me and he would get weird about it, almost angry. Found out later he was in Vietnam.

mobettachedda , Ivan Samkov Report

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#6

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I was raised LDS, so no alcohol allowed. When I was 8 or 9 years old I heard my mom (who converted to the faith when she married my dad) tell someone at our church that she didn't drink and never had. So I yelled, Yes you do! You do drink!

She got really embarrassed and kind of laughed and tried to explain to the person that I was just confused. I kept insisting she was lying. She made us leave, and when we got to the car she asked me why in the world I behaved that way.

So I proudly told her I'd seen her drink so many times- milk, juice, water, AND soda!

ThrowRAboredinAZ77 , M Adriyawan Report

But while parents may be more able to control what they teach their children, it becomes a bit more difficult when it comes to things like TV, and, as research quoted by Carrie Shrier shows, an average child spends roughly 3 hours a day watching it. 

The same study showed that the majority of children aged 1-2 strongly imitated the behavior seen on television. For example, when the researchers split these kids into groups and showed one of them a video of a stranger taking a toy apart, almost all the kids watching it attempted to do the same, while most of those who saw a stranger simply playing didn’t. 

#7

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate When I was about five, I went through an entrepreneurial phase. I used to go around picking flowers out of the neighbors' flower beds, then ringing their doorbell and trying to sell them their own flowers.

Sue_D_Nim1960 , Anna Zaykina Report

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#8

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate When I was 6/7 my pet mouse died. We buried it in the back yard. The next day my older cousin came to visit. I dug it up and put it back in the cage bc I thought she’d also like to pay her respects. My mom was like “No honey, it’s disrespectful. You have to let the dead be at peace.”.

Quinnlyness , Tanner Johnson Report

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#9

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I was walking into a gas station and a cop was walking out. he had a coffee in his hand and did what any reasonable person would do and reminded him that he had forgotten his donuts. i didnt realize for a while why my mom covered my mouth and apologized profusely.

imahappyaccidents , cottonbro studio Report

The story is more or less the same when it comes to saying rather than doing things. But, as per RaisingChildren.net.au, it is only at around 5-6 years old that children start to grasp what context is and that the same word can have several different meanings, as well as what a figure of speech is and how to use it.

A great example of this is the OP’s, u/Logical_Sweet_6624, story that they replied with to their own thread. When they were a kid in kindergarten, their mom was very concerned with her child making friends, so she would often ask if they played with anyone, to which they replied, “Sometimes I just like to play with myself.”

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#10

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate This miiiight be a touch dark, my therapist was the one who pointed out this was wildly inappropriate lol. When I was about 8 or 9 we had this church function. It was a benefit or charity event of sorts and… you know those benefits where you pledge $25 and a kid has to run a bunch of laps and it’s $25/lap? Well it was like that… but with Jello.

Children aged 6-10 were wrestling in a kiddie pool of jello in the REQUIRED two piece swim suits. Yes, two pieces were required for “safety” reasons. I have a home video and everything. I always thought it was fun but after watching home videos since my mom passed I realized it was only girls and all the adults were men and like 5 women.

Finicant , Esteban Garcia Report

#11

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I slapped my grandma in the face while she was sleeping because I watched too many spanish telenovellas and wanted to know how it feels like to slap someone.

InnerRecognition1094 , jonteisthebest Report

#12

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I used to search for "naked 13 year old girls" on Kazaa because, you know, I WAS 13 YEARS OLD! It makes perfect sense to find girls in my age group.

I'm thankful that the Internet was so young back then because looking back on it I'm horrified. I could've gotten myself or my parents in a s**tload of trouble.

And now I'll have to teach my own son that while, yes, being age appropriate makes sense, you can't do that.

RLLRRR , Lisa Fotios Report

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Lotekguy
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I would have done the same if there'd been an internet when I was that age.

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Bored Panda reached out to the OP, who was very surprised by the amount of attention that their question received online and was glad to share some additional commentary with us. According to them, the way their answer sounded most likely didn’t catch their mother’s attention or was ignored since she was a lot more focused on her kid not playing with anyone. 

Yet, saying something like that could really raise some eyebrows and attract some side-looks since, the way we interpret it, it’s definitely not the most appropriate thing to randomly say out loud. However, to a child who still takes everything quite literally, it is pretty difficult to grasp what is wrong with it. 

#13

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I have a cousin with autism. At the time I was about 6 or 7, he was 4-5. I didn't know the slightest bit about autism at the time, nor have I encountered anyone with it at that point, so seeing him and how he would interact with me and with our relatives had me confused as to why he was acting and behaving so different. I started asking my uncle and his wife (his parents) questions like "Why is he like that?" and "Why isn't he acting normally?"

I guess I sounded really rude, because on the drive home, my parents were the most furious they have ever been with me, telling me why would I ask questions like that, did I have an ounce of shame, etc. I was mortified and eventually reduced to tears because I had thought I commited a grave sin so bad that no amount of praying would get me forgiveness (christian upbringing) 😆

Looking back, I guess I did sound rude, but it would have massively helped if my parents told me about autism and what it really is beforehand, so that I could've touched on the subject a little more carefully. Today I have a good relationship with my cousin and my uncle and aunt, and I think they understood that I didn't really mean any malice, and was just a genuinely curious kid, so its no big issue.

JohnStringss , Michael Morse Report

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Rachel Pelz
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1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Parents should not get angry if they did a lousy job providing information beforehand. Maybe that was due to their insecurities?

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#14

When I was around 8 years old and on a family vacation, we stopped at a random restaurant so my stepfather could use the bathroom. I told him “Don’t choke the chicken!” I was thinking that meant to not clog the toilet. I got yelled at by my mother, and wondered why she was so mad about it. Years later I realized what it really meant.

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LadyRougarou
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

For those confused on this the saying used for don't j€rk off... So yeah they told their stepfather not to j€rk off in the bathroom

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#15

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate Pooped at my grandparents house and ran out of TP, used the sink hand towel instead and threw it in the trash. Five minutes later grandad was all WTF.

Haltercraft , Isaac Quesada Report

But in the end, almost every grown person also understands that children don’t do or say these things intentionally. We were all kids once, and it’s more than likely that we all have some stories of this kind. That is a natural part of growing up, and only by doing something can we learn to do it properly. 

What did you think about these stories? Did you have any experiences like these yourself? Share it all in the comments below!

#16

I think I was partly feral. I remember on a camping trip I was playing frisbee (I was 8 or so). It went astray and some hapless soul picked it up. I was afraid he was going to steal it so I picked up the biggest stick I could and said 'GIVE ME BACK MY FRISBEE!'. I remember the guy going 'Ok kid, here's your frisbee, take it easy.'.

Reasonable-Mess-2732 Report

#17

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate Somewhere around 5? Years old, my parents hosted Thanksgiving. At the table, one of the adults asked if there was anything new with me. I responded "my dad picks his boogers and eats them". I still clearly recall the shocked silence.
I'm 56 now.

Salty-Sarge2021 , klublr.com Report

#18

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate Watching I think Prince of Egypt? In school in like 5th grade, and as the woman was setting Moses in the basket she put her middle finger on his head. I knew that holding up your middle finger was rude, but I didn't have a name for the gesture. So I said 'why is she fingering the baby?' only loud enough for my friend to hear. But the kids in front of me heard and one spun around and called me disgusting. I didn't get it then but like a year or more later that popped into my head and I wanted nothing more than to curl up and die. Still do kinda.

Silvervirage , Christian Bowen Report

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TheGoodBoi
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Don't you love when a cringe moment from the past just floats into your head randomly

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#19

When I was real young, a friend and I were outside and I noticed the gas cap on a car. I took the gas cap off and was wondering how deep the hole was there so my friend and I started pouring in all the dirt and that we could find and actually managed to fill it up. The only saving grace was that we didn’t put the gas cap back on so when the guy came to get in his car, he noticed what we did. My parents were pissed. My father had to have the car towed to a gas station where they had to take the tank off to get all the dirt out. If he tried to start the car he would’ve ruined it. The funny thing was that there were a lot of people walking around on that block and that not one person stopped us.

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Rachel Pelz
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1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Nobody stopping them isn't really funny. It's not hard to talk to kids, asking them in a friendly tone what they are doing.

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#20

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I was probably 5 or 6, a family friend's wife had just passed, and I hadn't really had any death talk yet, so I asked mum where do dead people go, and she explained to me about coffins and tombs and so on.
Fascinated, I sketched a drawing of the guy's wife inside of the tomb, and went to show him. Luckily my mum stopped me at the right time. I couldn't understand why I wasn't supposed to show him.

arminredditer , Sarah Dietz Report

#21

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate My favorite cartoon growing up was The Angry Beavers. They had an episode where they record a smash hit called "Beaver Fever." I can vividly remember being maybe 5 years old and singing, "HE'S GOT THE BEAVER FEVER, BEAVER FEVER" at the top of my lungs in public and my mom struggling to shush me and me not knowing why.

Ok_Ad_9188 , Nickipedia Report

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TheGoodBoi
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I was so upset when they cancelled The Angry Beavers. My mother was so happy.

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#22

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I would suck on the inside of my own arm, giving myself hickeys. I was bored one day in the bathroom and zoned out, and came out with a huge bruise on my arm. In a public gas station. My mother was SUPER F*****G ALARMED when she saw me, and I never realized why. I was just embarrassed to admit I did it myself.

Glittercorn111 , Karolina Grabowska Report

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#23

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate My little brother used to come in my room and tell me, his big sister, "Wakey, wakey. Hands off snakey" 😂😂.

syvania , Andrea Piacquadio Report

#24

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate When I was 7 or 8, I was at the grocery store with my mom. She asked me to help her unload groceries on the conveyor belt. I, a young elementary white boy, proceeded to yell YESSUH MASSAH!

I don't even know where I originally heard that. I just remember not realizing that was probably not something I should say, then seeing my mom's face and realizing that was probably not something I should say at all ever in any context.

Caruthers , Gustavo Fring Report

#25

My brother and I thought it was funny to call 999 and immediately hang up. I remember about an hour later 2 policemen turned up and had a strict talking with my dad who was utterly confused until he connected the dots.

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#26

When I was in kindergarten, my mom would ask me everyday if I played with someone, sometimes I did sometimes I didn’t, so once I said “sometimes I just like to play with myself” looking back, it’s Hilarious.

Logical_Sweet_6624 Report

#27

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate Idk what compelled me to do it but I would just put my clothes in the toilet after I was done bathing. Made zero sense to me, underdeveloped child brain went brrrr I guess.

official_gart , Lisa Anna Report

#28

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate Please don't hate on me for this as I was a kid! And certainly was disciplined for it at the time.

I took a s**t on my neighbours roof because dad was hogging the toilet for too long...

Prestigious-MMO , Giorgio Trovato Report

#29

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate Made a prank call on random people. My brother and I would say something like "This is the police, you're under arrest", and then giggled like idiots before we hang up the phone. Those poor people. Sorry y'all.

cheesesoes , Pixabay Report

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TheGoodBoi
Community Member
1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Oh this was a typical Friday night. Break out the phone book! Let's start with all the Js!

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#30

Netizens Cringe Remembering They Did These 30 Things As They Didn’t Know They Were Inappropriate I had a birthday party when I was like 8 or 10. One of my friends had a gnarly amount of ear wax so I grabbed a Q tip and told him he had a lot of ear wax as I handed it to him in front of everybody.

Candersx , Karolina Grabowska Report

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LoveAllOfYou
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1 week ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

That's hilarious (although poor kid must have been embarrassed)!

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