As you were growing up, adults probably told you things that turned out to be flat-out wrong. Sometimes, it was “advice” passed from one generation to another that had no basis in reality. Sometimes, it was just plain nonsense, and they knew it. You may have believed some of these things at the time, but now you know you were misinformed or just being kidded.
We checked to see what internet users were saying about things they were told growing up that were just plain lies. You might have heard many of these yourself; others will be new and eye-opening!
…All the way to China.
Many of our elders had quite a preoccupation with China. Telling us we could dig a hole to China might have been an attempt to keep us occupied. Maybe telling us a penny lost down a drain would end up in China was a way to make us more careful with money.
Swallowed gum takes 7 years to digest.
It doesn’t, but teachers, parents, and classmates loved to say this. Considering all the gum stuck to floors and under desks, maybe encouraging us to swallow gum would have been better.
Eating too many apple seeds will kill you.
Apple seeds do contain a substance that includes cyanide, a deadly poison. However, you’d have to eat a ridiculous amount for them to kill you, and you’d have to crush them first as well.
Whales make waves.
Someone’s dad told them this, and we got a laugh out of it. It was probably much easier than explaining the moon and tides.
Blood in your veins is blue.
You probably heard blood is only red in your arteries, where it’s oxygenated. Blood is always red. Why do veins sometimes look blue? That’s how the light plays on your skin.
They won’t put up with this next year.
Or maybe you heard “this” would fly in _____ grade. Most likely, your teacher was just exasperated over behavior and was effectively throwing up their hands at it.
This will go on your permanent record.
This was another one designed to instill good behavior based on fear. It’s true that certain records can go with you from school to school, but there’s no “permanent record” following us for the rest of our lives.
We’re almost there.
No, you probably weren’t. To be fair, your parents were tired of constantly hearing the question that prompted this answer.
Moths are the ghosts of butterflies.
Here’s another that we found clever and even somewhat intriguing. We don’t know if the dad who said this was answering one of those tough questions kids spontaneously ask or if he was trying to entertain, but it’s definitely a creative one nonetheless.
It’ll put hair on your chest.
Some dads like to tell their kids this about bread crusts and other foods they don’t want to eat. In addition to knowing it isn’t true, we have to wonder how motivating this one was for girls.
If you touch a baby bird (or fawn), its mother will abandon it, and it will die.
This is another of many myths that never seem to go away. If you find a bird fallen from the nest and put it back in, the parents won’t abandon it. Likewise, if you see a fawn curled up and alone, the mother probably left it there while she went to feed, and she’ll be back. If that fawn is in an exposed or unsafe place, moving it to a better spot nearby is okay. Wear gloves if you do. It’s another myth that newborn fawns have no scent, though they are nearly scentless. Gloves can protect the fawn from getting your scent, which might attract a predator.