People Are Sharing Things Parents Do That Are "Negligent" If You're Broke But "Classy" If You're Rich, And It's Infuriating

Parenthood is hard for so many reasons, and it seems like society is determined to judge every decision parents make. That judgment is a thousand times worse for poor people, thanks to the double standards when it comes to things rich vs. poor parents do.

Recently, we asked the BuzzFeed Community to share the worst double standards between rich and poor parents, and the response was overwhelming. Here are some of the best replies:

1."Remember when Mila Kunis and Kristen Bell were talking about not bathing their kids until they were visibly dirty or smelly? Regular families would be getting home visits for neglect if people thought they were doing that."

Closeup of Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell
Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images

2."Making your kid do chores or get a job. If you’re rich, you’re teaching them responsibility and how to not take things for granted. If you’re poor, you’re making your kid grow up too fast and take on too much responsibility at a young age."


3."Rich people can get away with giving their kids unique names because those kids may never need to work, or there will be some sort of nepotism for their future. But poor parents who name their kids something unique are ridiculed, and those kids will have a harder time finding jobs."

Beyoncé and Jay-Z
Beyoncé and Jay-Z
Gwyneth Paltrow sitting, wearing a black outfit, beside a neon sign with the text 'goop'
Gwyneth Paltrow sitting, wearing a black outfit, beside a neon sign with the text 'goop'

Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for Roc Nation, Layne Murdoch Jr.


"Apple, Sparrow, Blue Ivy, Raddix, etc. If poor people give their kids names like that, it's considered trashy."


"People will ridicule the hell out of a poor kid with an unusual name, especially if it's 'ethnic.' 🙄"


4."Eating a vegetarian or vegan diet. If you’re wealthy, it’s a lifestyle choice to keep your family healthy. If you’re broke, it’s assumed that you don’t eat meat because your family can’t afford it."


5."Having soda and snack food in the house. If it’s a ‘drink fridge’ or ‘snack drawer’ and organized by colors and flavors, it’s bougie and aesthetic. If it’s a 12-pack of Coke jammed in the fridge or a bunch of boxes stuffed in the pantry, it’s giving your kids unhealthy food choices."


6."Taking your children out of school on a school day. Going to Tuscany? It’s an educational opportunity. Sports competitions? Building a résumé. But if it’s because someone needs to look after a relative who needs care? You’re jeopardizing your child's education. Car broke down and you can’t drive them? What poor parenting."

A mother leaving school with her child


Realpeoplegroup / Getty Images

7."Most moms get shamed for working, but I think rich working moms are glorified to some extent. If you're working in a high-powered (and highly compensated) position, you're a boss mom. If you're working a double shift at a grocery store, you're trashy."


8."Leaving your kids with sitters and nannies all the time. When the Kardashians have nannies, it's because they're running their empires. When a lower income single parent has their kid at daycare or a sitter, they're shamed for working all day and not prioritizing the welfare of their child. Similarly, if a celebrity or rich person goes out partying, it's seen as fun, but a single parent is neglecting their child."


9."When poor parents can’t afford to give kids extravagant gifts, that's neglect. But when rich people don't give gifts, it's called minimalism."

Child in a sweater stands perplexed while adults in the background use technology, possibly exploring work-from-home dynamics


Sdi Productions / Getty Images

10."I wouldn’t call myself 'poor' per se, but I’m definitely not rich. Splurging on my child is frowned upon because I’m 'spoiling' him. But for wealthier families, it’s just a normal thing to buy $100+ pairs of shoes, and no one bats an eye or comments."


11."When rich parents don't vaccinate their kids, it's because they 'did their own research' and can afford to treat their kids if they get sick. But poor parents who don't vaccinate are considered ignorant."


12."Letting their kids have a sip of alcohol once or twice. If a rich parent lets their kid have a sip of wine or beer, they’re fun and cool; if a poor parent does it, they’re raising their kids to be alcoholics."

Screenshot from "Friends" of Ross holding a margarita


Warner Bros. Television

13."If your parents are rich and you wear grungy clothes, clothes with holes, etc., then it's considered a fashion statement. If poor kids wear those same clothes, it's neglect."


14."Wearing used clothes. When rich kids do it, it’s 'thrifting,' but when poor kids do it, it’s 'buying secondhand.'"


"Similarly, if you’re rich, then people love the vintage jacket you inherited from a parent or grandparent. If you’re poor, you're ridiculed for wearing hand-me-downs."


15."Absentee parents. My high school boyfriend’s family was wealthy (as in, they lived in a three-story mansion and had uniformed staff they referred to as 'the help'), and his parents were never around. He and his brothers got into all sorts of trouble (I even had to go to the house and get bail money for him). They had no supervision or guidance, and his parents weren’t even working. Just traveling. But if poor parents have to be gone to afford their house and feed their kids, they’re judged for not being around."

Screenshot from "Knives Out"
Claire Folger / © Lionsgate / courtesy Everett

16."Homeschooling. If you’re rich and your kid is taught privately, it’s because you’re giving them a leg up. If you’re poor and your kid is homeschooled, attends charter school, or does independent study, then you get weird looks for isolating them and people assume you’re a religious nut."


17."Gap years are taken by the children of the rich, but kids from poor families who don't immediately pursue higher education are considered lazy good-for-nothings who refuse to grow up."


18."If you're rich and send your kids to boarding school or prep school, you're setting them up for future success. If you're broke and send your children to live with a relative that may have more money, live in a better school district, etc., you're lazy and pawning off your kids on someone else."


19."Sending children to summer camp. If it’s out of necessity because the parents need to work, they’re looked down on for not spending time with their kids. If it’s rich people sending the kids away, then it’s considered giving their kids new experiences and opportunities."

Three children dressed as scouts with a tent by a river, looking at a map and smiling
Visoot Uthairam / Getty Images

20."Specialty schools. Private schools for rich kids are highly ranked, college-feeding schools in US. But trade school is considered trashy, even though the requirements to stay in a trade school are usually higher than the requirements to be in a private school."


21."If you're poor, reusing paper plates, napkins, plastic bags, glass jars, etc. is considered dirty, and kids are made fun of for it. But if you're rich, it's considered being green and living sustainably."


22."Having kids who speak more than one language. When you’re rich, it's considered a mark of a high quality education and being cultured. When you’re poor, kids are looked down upon for not speaking their home country’s language."

Screenshot from "Knives Out"


Claire Folger / © Lionsgate / courtesy Everett Collection

Some responses edited for length and clarity.

What are the worst double standards between rich and poor parents that you've seen? Share them in the comments below!