best parenting advice ever?

A Dad Tells Parents To Stop Worrying About Giving Their Kids A Good Future

And he gives genius advice on what you can focus on instead.

Originally Published: 
Popular content creator, Abraham Piper, advises parents that future planning for kids is pointless. ...
TikTok / Abraham Piper

Parents often find themselves planning, prepping, and saving for their kid’s futures, hoping they join the best activities, attend the most prestigious schools, and have the easiest path to the life that they want. Really, a lot of parents set out to make the best plans for their kids’ life — and that’s a priority.

The preparation and foresight that goes into this future-planning can become stressful and anxiety-ridden when things 1) don’t go the way things were originally planned (like a kid ends up changing their mind!) or 2) a parents’ own hardships and struggles trip up the “plan.” And really, at the end of the day, the future is a huge unknown. There are just too many variables to predict what’s going to happen next.

Popular content creator, author, and artist, Abraham Piper, went viral after a TikTok video where he advises parents that all that future planning is pointless. Don’t even break one single stress sweat over giving your kids’ good futures because how a person’s future pans out is literally out of our hands.

Instead, he suggests, give your kids “a good past.”

“The future is uncertain,” he says in the now-viral clip. “So, is it the best use of our parental energy, our love, to continue trying to achieve the impossible? Isn't there something instead where the success could happen right now instead of 30 years down the road, if at all?”

He continues on noting that if parents focused on giving their kids a good day, everyday, focusing on the present, a more achievable goal is at hand. When parents feeling like they are succeeding, they become happier adults thus raising happier children.

Ensuring a happy, healthy childhood for a kid is one of the only things that parents actually do have some control over. Parents have an opportunity to lay a foundation for their kids that is stable and can be built upon.

“A huge part of who we feel we are as individuals is our memories, our history. And our kids are becoming themselves every day in this respect, and we're in charge of it,” Piper notes.

“In her book, The Philosophical Baby, Allison Gopnik notes that we actually do get to determine one very important aspect of our children's adult lives — they childhood they bring into it. It's great to be smart, rich, mentally healthy, all things we tend to want for our children, but it's just as valuable, Gopnik points out, to have ‘the ineradicable gift of a happy childhood.’”

Piper notes that a “good childhood” doesn’t need to filled with extravagant vacations or a world-class education. Instead, it’s the little things that make the difference like “a trip to the park, hugs before bed, letting them choose the music in the car.”

“It's doable,” he says. “The present, we can almost control, or at least feel like it. And that feeling is all we're dealing with here, because we get to see our efforts work right now and not just hope that they will.”

Piper’s video took off, gaining almost half a million views, and catching the attention of so many parents who needed to hear his advice as well as some adults who wish their own parents could have gleaned something from the TikTok.

One user wrote, “‘Give them a good past’ Me: *bursts into tars*”

Another said, “As a parent who is working so hard to break the generational trauma cycle; my heart needed to hear this today.”

“This! I am trying to create a wonderful foundation so that my kids feel safe and secure and loved no matter what kind of future they have,” another echoed.

Research has shown that childhood experiences (good and bad) affect individual health in adulthood.

People who experience numerous hardships or negative experiences during childhood are at risk of developing behavioral disorders, such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse and detrimental health behaviors later in life.

In contrast, however, positive childhood events lead to improved health outcomes in adulthood.

The bottom line? It can be overwhelming to think about how you can make your kid’s entire life as good as it can be. But it’s totally possible to look at one moment or one day and give your kid love, support, and safety that they will remember forever.

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