Five gross things that kids do

A man wearing a surgeon-style mask holding a dirty toothpaste lid.

Before having kids, I was pretty squeamish about certain things. I didn’t like getting my hands dirty and was always at great pains to avoid doing so. That’s not to say I was afraid of hard work, you understand. Just that I’ve always been a bit Lady Macbeth with regards handwashing.

Things have changed a lot in the last eight and a half years. Like most parents besides Russell Brand, I’ve been covered in all kinds of nasties courtesy of my three beautiful children. So, although I still have what I maintain is a healthy relationship with liquid soap, I’m a lot less freaked out by such things these days.

However, recent events have tested my resolve. Here, then, are five gross things that kids do. Well, that my kids do anyway…

Not to be sniffed at

I was woeful at blowing my nose as a kid and it took me years to master the art, so I was proud and impressed when I discovered that youngest has already aced it. The other day, she calmly helped herself to a tissue and got the job done.

I wish the story ended there, but it doesn’t. On her way to the bin, she noticed a stain on the tablecloth. Before I could say anything, she had started ‘cleaning’ it. With her snot rag. Ewww.

Nothing but the tooth

Everyone knows the ‘lick the lid’ rule. It’s a perfectly acceptable way of ensuring you don’t miss out on any of the good stuff. With a small but important caveat. Namely when said ‘good stuff’ is an individual yoghurt or similar single-use food.

It is most definitely not reasonable to do so with the lid of the toothpaste. I caught one of the boys doing this the other day. After explaining the error of his ways to him, I told my wife what I had caught him doing. His brother chipped in to gleefully admit that he does it too. I’m so glad they have age-appropriate toothpaste and don’t share ours.

A good sense of houmous

Not to be outdone by her brothers’ toothpaste-tasting antics, youngest went one step further recently. My parents came round for Sunday lunch and we put out some savoury snacks and houmous while we finished preparing the meal.

She loves the stuff and regularly has a dollop of it with lunch. So I guess I should have seen it coming. But I was too busy peeling spuds. As I threw the last one in the saucepan, I looked up. To discover her face largely obscured by the pot. It’s her own exclusive pot now. Maybe she did it on purpose.

Taking the piss

This must be a common complaint of parents of young boys, but their ability to hit the target in the bathroom is reminiscent of Chris Grayling with anything. And, yes, I picked on him last week too, but he’s earned it.

People often say that there’s nothing worse than a wet sock. Obviously, there are many worse things. Starting with two wet socks. When you know for a fact that it wasn’t water you trod in.

Throwing in the towel

Going full circle to the important matter of handwashing, I’m pleased to report that this is something that my kids are all good at. Well, they’re good at the first part anyway. Drying their hands is another matter.

The boys seem incapable of doing so without flicking water all over the floor while their sister can’t do it without burying her face in the towel. I would estimate that it is always around 3% snot and houmous.

Which gross things that kids do turn your stomach?


  1. John Adams

    Thankfully, I can’t say my kids do anything out of the ordinary, but we had a friend’s kid round once who sneezed without covering his face. Just makes me feel queasy.

  2. Pingback: Kids' things that give me the creeps | Family life | Diary of the Dad

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