For better or for worse: How much are your kids like you?

This weekend we went to an all-in-one play center – roller skating, laser tag, gigantic jungle gym, escape rooms, etc. It was our first time going there and it was pretty impressive, but our first hour proved to be a little tense.

We started at the roller skating rink and my daughter was really nervous. She did NOT want to skate. I sat at a table with her and colored. I didn’t want to skate either. My sister-in-law and her four kids were all skating; even my out-of-shape, forty-five-year-old husband put on skates. I was certain he was going to break his leg but he didn’t even fall once. 

While my daughter and I sat and colored my family constantly pushed her to put on skates. They were relentless. My daughter eventually crawled under the table and I told them to leave her alone. 

She never did skate. We moved on to other parts of the center and she happily played with her cousins. The rest of the day she was fine.

Every time I see my daughter get nervous it hurts because I know what that feels like. I was a nervous kid who turned into a very nervous adult. This is one trait of mine I was hoping my daughter wouldn’t get. I want my daughter to try new things and meet new people enthusiastically. I don’t want there to be any missed opportunities for her.

Perhaps if I had put on skates, my daughter would’ve, too. Unfortunately, I’m dealing with my own anxiety and it is so hard to model some sort of confident behavior for her. It’s easy for her to sit and color with me because I always sit and color. 

Of course, my daughter has many more of my traits – we’re both very short and our eyes turn to little crescents when we smile. We’re both impatient and love cats. It’s fun and a little weird when you see how much your kid is like you, but I really wish my daughter didn’t have my anxiety.

So how much are your kids like you? Is it good or bad? What do you do when your kids inherit your shortcomings? 


  1. StonedRanger says

    So my kids are step kids. Their bio fathers abandoned both of them basically so when The Boss and I got together it was a package deal. I raised them and they both call me dad which suits me fine. They both have traits that are like mine. They are both confident now that they are in their 40’s. Neither of them is tolerant of foolishness from others, not that they dont have fun, they both try stuff that I gave up on. Sometimes fearless and other times in need of assurances. Like me, they made some mistakes in their early adulthood and have overcome some serious issues, but they are both in full control of their lives and doing well. My son is my personal hero. He dug some deep holes for himself and managed to figure it out and get himself out of it. Same with my daughter. I love em both no matter what stage they were in. Im going to be a great grandpa next month so I guess I cant complain too much.

  2. brightmoon says

    My oldest has my brains 😉the youngest has the creativity and the brains along with being a little disorganized just like me. I’m glad both of them are as smart as they are . They were both easygoing children and aside from some setbacks for my oldest due to depression (abusive father and maternal grandparents) they’re doing well

  3. Allison says

    Both of my kids were slow maturing, and had (maybe still have?) executive function issues. I remember I had to walk them through homework assignments, because seeing a page full of vocabulary words or sums overwhelmed them, and we had many, many meetings with their schools trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to get them to tell us what the assignments were because my kids could not remember them. They would always say, “but they’re supposed to remember their homework!” They were interested in teaching them as if they were who the teachers wanted them to be, not how they actually were. (Somebody seems to have a “learning disability,” but I don’t think it’s my kids….)

    I am glad I was their parent and not a lot of the parents I know, because I’d been through a lot of that myself and knew it wasn’t just them being “lazy” or “obstinant” or some other sort of accusation of deliberate refusal.

    Another fun coincidence: my older child came out to me as trans not long after I decided I was trans and was getting up the courage to do HRT. I’m sure the Republicans would claim that I brainwashed her, but actually, she’s like everyone else in my family: we are who and what we are, so you can either take us as we are or you might as well just walk away, because you sure as h*** can’t change us.

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