Getting kissed at the school gates, holding hands and being told off in public are amongst the ‘gross’ things parents do – according to the nation’s kids.
A study of 1,300 children aged six to 13 has revealed a list of the top 20 things they hate their parents doing.
Wiping food of their face in front of friends, seeing their parents snog and getting called a pet name also feature highly on the list. While many kids cringe when their parents share embarrassing photos of them on social networking sites, or tell baby stories to friends and family. Kids also hate it when parents gross them out by talking about toilet habits, or when mum or dad picks their nose for them rather than handing them a tissue.
A spokesman for kids’ gross-out animated comedy series Scream Street, which commissioned the study to mark the launch of the show’s new episodes on CBBC from 31st October, said: “This study clearly shows that UK families have great fun grossing each other out, and that no matter your age, parent or child, being gross is universally funny.”
The study shows children feel completely grossed out when their parents eat disgusting food such as sushi, vegetables or oysters. They also hate it when mum or dad insist on playing awful music when their friends are round, and when they wear unfashionable clothing.
Children also complain when their folks try to say cool phrases, choose them ‘uncool’ clothes to wear or get out baby pictures in front of others.
Two thirds of children claim to find their parents embarrassing, and a third wish their mum and dad would try harder to be less gross. The average child thinks they started to notice their folks’ gross behaviour were when they were just six years old, and have noticed their parents are at their worst when putting on a show around friends. A quarter of children even find their parents embarrassing when at home, while a fifth don’t like going to the supermarket in case mum or dad starts misbehaving.
But half of all children polled know their parents only do gross things because they’re trying to be funny, and only a third think that’s just the way they are. A huge 9 out of 10 of kids find their parents funny, loving their efforts at singing and dancing around the house, as well as cringing at their gross antics. Two in 10 children say their parents enjoy seeing their reaction when they act in a silly manner.
"Dad wins the vote for being the most embarrassing parent according to 43 per cent of children – compared to just 19 per cent mums"
But the research also reveals the way in which children get their own backs – deliberately behaving disgustingly to get their own back on their gross parents.
Refusing to flush the toilet, keeping an untidy bedroom and wiping their nose on their sleeve rather than getting a tissue are the top three ways children know they can gross out their parents. Not washing their hands after the toilet and leaving dirty washing on the floor have the same affect. While millions of kids know their parents hate it when they don’t brush their teeth, eat with their mouth open or spit out their food. Saving chewing gum for later, telling disgusting jokes and chewing their own hair are amongst other unpleasant ways kids like to upset their parents.
A spokesman for Scream Street continues: “Gross-out humour and silly antics will always be hilarious and it’s great to find out how much fun the UK’s families are having together – especially when they’re grossing each other out.”
TOP 20 WAYS PARENTS GROSS OUT KIDS
Kissing them at the school gates / in public
Telling them off in public
Wiping food off their face
Hold their hand
Sharing embarrassing photos of them
Farting in public
Telling embarrassing jokes
Calling them a pet name
Playing embarrassing music
Telling baby stories about them
Trying to say cool phrases
Drinking wine/ beer
Choosing them ‘uncool’ clothes to wear
Talking about toilet habits
Picking them nose for them
Eating horrible food such as oysters, sushi and vegetables
Spending hours on the toilet
Showing off their baby pictures
TOP 20 WAYS CHILDREN GROSS OUT THEIR PARENTS:
Refusing to flush the toilet
Wiping their nose on their sleeve
Not washing their hands
Leaving dirty socks and washing on the floor
Not brushing their teeth
Eating with the mouth open
Spilling drinks / making a mess
Wearing the same clothes over and over again
Playing with their food
Spitting out food they don’t like
Eating stuff off the floor
Chewing their hair
Playing with chewing gum
Getting covered in mud / dirt
Getting covered in food
Saving chewing gum for later
Telling gross jokes