The 20 things parents stress about most

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock 

It seems we are not alone in the relentless, inescapable struggle of getting kids to bed every night. A survey has identified it as one of our top parental stress triggers, along with 19 others that really test our limits.

BPMe surveyed 2000 parents about the things that stress them out the most about having kids. Topping the list is when the kids are sick, which will come as no surprise, especially to working parents, or those with chronically ill children.

Other triggers included monitoring screen use, getting the kids to eat healthy food, room tidying, tooth brushing and meal times in general.

This last one seems to go against the common perception that having a nightly family meal time improves family life, so is it a case of it being more beneficial for some family members than others?

Parents also reported feeling stressed up to six times a day and identified the age of five as when they thought their children were most demanding and brought on the most amount of stress.

Here are the top 20 parental stress triggers:

1. When they get sick
2. Getting them into bed
3. Getting them to eat certain foods
4. Getting them to stop playing on screens such as phones or watching TV
5. Getting them to tidy their rooms
6. Getting them to clean their teeth
7. Meal times
8. Getting out the door in time for school
9. Getting them to school on time
10. Getting them dressed for school
11. Doing the weekly shop
12. Making sure they've done their homework
13. Remembering important school dates
14. Getting them to eat anything at all
15. Bath time
16. Keeping an eye on the sugar content of foods
17. Getting them out of bed
18. Shopping for new clothes/shoes
19. Remembering homework deadlines
20. Getting them to put their shoes on in the morning

Daniel Slater, Digital Execution Manager for BP said, "A day of battling the wills of children can be exhausting," with the report stating that kids and their antics are a primary source of stress, according to parents.

"Children wreak the most havoc and cause the most stress in the home (46 per cent) and continue their chaotic ways at the shops (13 per cent) and when out in restaurants (10 per cent)."

If it sounds bleak, it's balanced out a bit with two thirds of parents saying that their kids antics can also be hilarious more than stressful.

The source of the stress seems to be the time it takes for kids to do things, with simple tasks such as getting out the door taking 12 minutes longer than before kids.

And let's not forget what came before actually leaving the house; an 11 extra minutes to get dressed in the morning, and having breakfast together adding a further 12 minutes to the morning routine.

Ah we do love them and would give our lives for them without a thought, but it is nice to know that other parents are in exactly the same boat when it comes to feeling stressed while raising kids.