There's no doubt that kids see the world through different lenses than adults. As a kid who loved to read, I remember certain books that I couldn't put down — the ones that made me laugh, reminded me of my family, or enhanced my imagination. These were the books that I reached for over and over again. As an adult though, trying to read some of those very same classics makes me shudder or at least think twice. And I don't think I'm the only parent out there like this. There are definitely certain books that you'll hate but your kids will love, and they usually end up being the ones they reach for over and over again.
I know, these books are written for children. So obviously, reading them with an adult's perspective is a loosing battle, but how can you not? Even as someone who genuinely enjoys children's books and young adult literature, these books can be a bit too much for me. And although I would never ban my kids from reading a book just because I didn't like it, I might limit the amount of times my kid reaches for it in a day, because really, we can only handle so much.
1. 'Love You Forever' by Robert Munsch
To a child, this book is simply the sweet reminder of a mother's love. But when you read Love You Forever as an adult, you'll end up in a pile of tears every single time. And when you discover the real meaning behind Love You Forever, you'll really hate reading it.
2. 'The Junie B. Jones' Series by Barbara Park
I read Junie B. Jones as a child and my grammar was none the wiser. But to many parents, the butchering of grammar and exclusive use of first-grade lingo is a bit painful.
3. 'The Rainbow Fish' by Marcus Pfister
I'm all for the sparkly pages and pretty pictures, but is the real lesson from The Rainbow Fish? It seems a little bit like the story of a fish who tried too hard to fit in and ended up giving away too much of himself.
4. 'The Runaway Bunny' by Margaret Wise Brown
To children, The Runaway Bunny gives a sense of security, knowing that their mother will be there where ever they go. But when you read it as an adult, it somewhat screams "helicopter parent."
5. 'The Giving Tree' by Shel Silverstein
The Giving Tree is one of the most loved kid's classics. As a huge Shel Silverstein fan, I was reluctant to put this one the list, but after thinking over the strange mother-child relationship portrayed by the tree and the boy, I couldn't help myself. While certainly, sacrifice is required of a mother, there is just something about the adult boy who, after taking everything (literally) from this tree, returns to sit on the stump. "And the tree was happy."
6. 'Fox In Socks' by Dr. Seuss
Any book that contains tongue twisters, no matter how well they teach kids about rhymes, isn't for the faint of heart. Fox In Socks, along with almost every other Dr. Seuss book, falls into that category.
7. 'Peter Rabbit' by Beatrix Potter
Despite the gorgeous illustrations and sweet story, The Tale of Peter Rabbit is just so darn long. If you have the stamina to sit down and read to your child for an entire afternoon, I applaud you.
8. 'Olivia' by Ian Falconer
I'm all for the anthropomorphism of animals, but some parents claim that the endearing little pig takes it a bit too far and becomes annoying. I won't comment here, since Olivia and I share a name and I would be doing my childhood a disservice.
9. 'Amelia Bedelia' by Peggy Parish
Another series that I read (and loved) as a kid, but can't stomach now, is Amelia Bedelia. These books seem to send the message that anyone who cooks and cleans for a living must be completely stupid.