Parents will say anything to their kid to get them to do something or act a certain way. And kids? Well, kids are gullible, and more often than not, they’ll believe anything you tell them.

The problem is, sometimes that little white lie can stay with the kid until well into their adult years. Even it sounds completely ridiculous to someone else, it might sound like a serious rule to the person who was told this as a kid.

In a recent Reddit thread, some of these things were brought to life. People shared the “dumbest” things that their parents told them that they believed for way too long. Here are our favorites:

  1. The Truth About the Ice Cream Man

    “My mum told me that when the ice cream man played his tune it meant he was out of ice cream. Didn’t realize it was a lie till I was 14.”

  2. Dogs Take Their Coats Off at Night

    “Dad told me that dogs have a secret zip and take their coats off at night. I spent weeks checking the dog for a zip. Still don’t believe a word he says.”

  3. Only At This Point in Time Can You Curse

    “My mum told me you can’t swear until you have your driver’s license.”

  4. There’s No Such Thing as Hot Desserts

    “My brother-in-law was told that eating cakes fresh from the oven would give you stomachache. Really his mum just wanted first slice for herself. He only realized hot desserts were a thing when he was 30.”

  5. Where Goldfish Go

    “My parents told me that my goldfish escaped to the sea and gave me a post-it note with tiny writing on it saying ‘I am going back to the sea!”

  6. Discarding Old Calendars is Bad

    “My dad told me that throwing out old calendars was bad luck. One year I tried to test his theory by throwing out an old calendar (I had amassed a stockpile) and ended up crying in my wardrobe for hours convinced that I had just killed my whole family.”

  7. The Thermostat Can’t Go Above 68

    “Dad told me that the boiler would explode if I put the thermostat above 68. Believed that until I was in my late teens.”

  8. The Truth on Chicken vs. Pork

    “Wild chicken was different to chicken. As a kid I hated pork and my dad used to say ‘you like chicken! It’s just the wild kind,” and I’d lap that sh*t up.”

  9. Never Ring The Bus Bell

    “I was told that ringing the bus bell slowed the bus down. When I went to secondary school, I had to take the bus. My mind was blown by the reckless ringing of the bell. I felt sorry for the driver having to put his foot down to counter it. I asked a driver in my first week there and he wouldn’t stop laughing.”

  10. Don’t Hop Behind a Shop Counter

    “If you go behind the counter in a shop you have to work there for the rest of your life.”

  11. Don’t Make Faces When It’s Windy

    “If you make a face and the wind changes you’ll stay like it forever.”

  12. Cleaning Behind Your Ears is SUPER Important

    “That if I didn’t clean behind my ears, potatoes would start growing there.”

  13. Money From Parents Needs to Eventually Go Back to Them

    “When I was in cub scouts, the lady who was the leader told me then when we grow up, we have to pay back all of the money spent on us to our parents. It made 100% logical sense to me at the time. Casually mentioned it to my Mam one day not long after who straight faced rolled with it. Bamboozled.”

Did your parents ever tell you something that you believed for years? Share what it was!