Family Life

When Kids Give (Backhanded) Compliments

Ah, kids. Those little people with very unique ways of looking at the world and looking at us.

My kids are always coming out with what they think are compliments, but in truth someone else might consider to be a little less than complimentary. But kids are refreshingly honest, and you just gotta accept their compliments in the spirit they’re intended and laugh.

When Kids Give Compliments

Not long ago I was cuddling on the couch with my 3-year-old. She turned to me, patted me lovingly, and said, “I love your tummy, Mummy. It’s so squishy, like a pillow!” Gee, thanks!

And then there’s my oldest. One night she was really unhappy with the dinner I’d made and told me my chicken tasted awful. When I reminded her that was rude, she assured me, “But I still love you, even if you make me eat gross food.”

Of course every parent has experienced this at one time or another. Some friends and readers have shared their own “compliments” below. What about you?


My 4-year-old daughter said, “I love your hair now – you looked like a man when it was short.”

My 7-year-old son let me know, “I noticed you was trying to grow a mustache. It looks good.”

When my son was about four he got into my make up. I asked him why he was playing with my grown-up things and he said he wanted to look old like me!

~ Elizabeth R.

My 6-year-old daughter said to me, “I like your butt mommy, it’s growing everyday.” I said “Thank you, I like it too.” (I want my kids to know that a “growing” butt is okay.)

After returning from a three day trip I told my 3-year-old how much I missed her. She just smiled and didn’t say anything. I asked her if she’d missed me when I was gone. She said “Not really. I mean if a monster ate you I’d miss you… ”

~ Shayna Murray, Mommy Outside the Box

My 5-year-old used to tell me all the time, “Mummy, you feel nice and mushy like my pillow.”

~ Anonymous

My 6-year-old son said,”Mom you look beautiful when you put on makeup!” Thanks kid, I think.

My 9-year-old daughter said she really liked my shirt and asked if she could borrow it for Halloween. She was dressing up as a zombie. Okay, it might have had a few holes in it, but still…

~ Meg

Myself and the boys were saying nice things about each other. My oldest decided to say nice things about me: sweet, kind, lovable, best Mom I know, almost as cool as Dad…

~ Shari, The Knit Wit

My 4-year-old daughter said “I like the way you smell, Mommy, when you don’t take a shower and are sweaty.”

~ Anonymous

I’m sitting at the dining room table; writing up a blog post. Two-and-a-half-year-old Penny comes up next to me and pulls up the side of my shirt to expose my side. She leans over and breathes in deeply, smelling my side. She gets a very contented look on her face and says “You smell like mama.” Aww, my mama heart strings are plucked. I remember taking my mom’s scrunchie with me to kindergarten once, because it smelled like her. I asked Penny, “What does mama smell like?” Penny says, without skipping a beat, “Poop.”

For the record, I do not smell like poop.

I was putting my 3-year-old to bed when he started rubbing his cheek on mine. I thought he was being so sweet and then he said, “I like your face because your mustache is soft. Not like Daddy’s.”

~ Jennifer M.


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  • Kids say the darnest things, and because they are kids saying these things it’s also so sweet and cute!!

  • I’ve actually experienced the exact same thing where my kids would say mommy you need to dye your hair your grey hair is showing. I’m like gee thanks.

  • These make me glad that my son is still too young to speak. But in some ways, I cant wait to hear him put together his thoughts and expressions verbally.