Parenting quotes for laughter, inspiration, and support

Medically reviewed by April Justice, LICSW
Updated May 3, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Being a parent can sometimes feel like a roller coaster of emotions. From joy to frustration, you’re likely to experience a whole range of feelings brought on by all kinds of different situations. Regardless of how you’re feeling about your role as a primary caregiver today, you might benefit from a bit of wisdom, humor, or commiseration from other parents in the form of parenting quotes. Read on for a compilation of quotes from celebrities, writers, and thinkers of the past and today who also chose to embark on the journey of being a parent.

Looking for support on your parenting journey?

Funny parenting quotes

Being a parent or caregiver can come with its share of difficult times. If you’re feeling this way, research suggests that having a laugh could help. One study recommends laughter as “a universal non-pharmacologic approach to reduce stress and anxiety” and “a non-invasive, cost-effective, and easily implementable intervention”. To enjoy its benefits, you might try reading the funny parenting quotes below: 

  • “Becoming a mom to me means that you have accepted that for the next 16 years of your life, you will have a sticky purse”. –Nia Vardalos
  •  “You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance”. –Franklin P. Adams
  • “My biggest parenting conundrum: Why is it so hard to put someone who is already sleepy to sleep?” –Chrissy Teigen

  • “The biggest thing I remember is that there was just no transition. You hit the ground diapering.” –Paul Reiser

  • “It just occurred to me that the majority of my diet is made up of the foods my kid didn’t finish”. –Carrie Underwood 

  • “People who say they sleep like a baby usually don’t have one”. –Leo Burke

Quotes on parental love

Many people find that their definition of love expands when they become parents. A 2013 UCLA study shows that warmth and selfless love from parents or other primary caregivers can significantly impact a child’s future mental health and relationships. Read on for inspirational quotes about the love of a parent for their child:

  • “You have to give them unconditional love. They need to know that even if they screw up, you love them. You don’t want them to grow up and resent you or, even worse, parent the way you parented them”. –Alfie Kohn 

  • “Your kids require you most of all to love them for who they are, not to spend your whole time trying to correct them”. –Bill Ayers 

  • “My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person: He believed in me”. –Jim Valvano

  • “The love a parent has for a child, there’s nothing else like it. No other love so consuming.” ---Cassandra Clare

  • “A step-parent is so much more than just a parent. They make a choice to love when they didn’t have to”. –Unknown 

  • “A parent’s love is whole no matter how many times divided”. –Robert Brault

  • “Unconditional love is loving your kids for who they are, not for what they do. It isn’t something you will achieve every minute of every day. But it is the thought we must hold in our hearts every day”. –Stephanie Marston

  • “My children taught me the true meaning of unconditional love”. –Yvonne Pierre

Quotes on the challenges of parenting

Being chronically overworked and often underappreciated can lead to parental burnout. According to the American Psychological Association, it can be essential to recognize when you’re overwhelmed and find healthy ways to manage your stress. Speaking with fellow parents or reading inspirational quotes by them may help you feel a little bit more seen and hopeful:

  • “It takes a village to raise a child. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.” – Unknown

  • “Keeping the Big Picture in mind is one of the most important things parents can do, and also one of the hardest”. –Terry Brazelton

  • “There is no such thing as a perfect parent. So just be a real one”. –Sue Atkins

  • “The thing about parenting rules is there aren’t any. That’s what makes it so difficult”. –Ewan McGregor

  • “With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts”. –Eleanor Roosevelt

  • “It’s not only children who grow. Parents do too. As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours. I can’t tell my children to reach for the sun. All I can do is reach for it, myself”. –Joyce Maynard

  • “We’re all imperfect parents, and that’s perfectly okay. Tiny humans need connection, not perfection”. –LR Knost

Inspirational parenting quotes

Parenting comes with its joys as well as its challenges. If you’re feeling tired or discouraged at this moment in your parenting journey, the following quotes may offer some hope and positivity and remind you of the joys:

  • “Raise your word, not voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” ---Rumi

  • “If you raise your children to feel that they can accomplish any goal or task they decide upon, you will have succeeded as a parent, and you will have given your children the greatest of all blessings”. –Brian Tracy 

  • “The voice of parents is the voice of gods, for to their children, they are Heaven’s lieutenants”. –William Shakespeare 

  • “If there is anything we wish to change in our child, we should first examine it and see whether it is not something that could be better changed in ourselves.” –Carl Jung

  • “Parenthood…it’s about guiding the next generation and forgiving the last”. –Peter Krause

Quotes on teaching children

Research has consistently shown that children learn from their parents in multiple ways, naturally looking up to them as examples. From the behaviors you model to the lessons you pass on, your children are likely to soak up whatever you show them. Here are quotes on teaching and guiding your children:

  • “If we don’t shape our kids, they will be shaped by outside forces that don’t care what shape our kids are in”. –Dr. Louise Hart

  • “My father didn’t tell me how to live; he lived and let me watch him do it”. –Clarence Budinton Kelland

  • “Don't worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you”. –Robert Fulghum

  • “It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength”. –Maya Angelou

  • “Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all”. –Aristotle

  • “All kids need a little help, a little hope, and someone who believes in them”. –Magic Johnson

Looking for support on your parenting journey?

How therapy can be helpful for parents

Having the right support can be integral for a parent or primary caregiver. Leaning on a partner or friends who are also parents can be a source of inspiration, advice, and care. You may also benefit from having the support of a trained therapist. They can offer you a safe, nonjudgmental space where you can express and process emotions related to your parenting journey. They can also help you develop healthy perspectives and coping mechanisms so you can avoid letting stress or burnout get the better of you. 

Many busy parents who are interested in therapy find it difficult to make time to travel to and from regular in-person appointments. In cases like these, virtual therapy can be an effective alternative. Research suggests that both methods can offer similar benefits, so you can typically choose the format that works best for you. If you believe virtual therapy would be a more accessible option for you, you might consider a virtual therapy platform like BetterHelp. You can get matched with a licensed therapist in a matter of days, and you can speak with them via phone, video chat, and/or in-app messaging from home or anywhere you have an internet connection. 

Takeaway

Sometimes, all it takes is an inspirational quote or two to help you feel that much less alone on a journey like parenting. If you’re looking for additional support as you face the challenges of raising a child, you might consider meeting with a therapist.
Explore the complexities of parenting in therapy
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