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15 Things You Were Told Never to Touch as a Kid

As a child, you were told, “Don’t touch that!” or, “You can look but do not touch!” And today, you hear yourself saying it to your child, right? Here’s a look back at 15 things we were told to never touch as a kid.

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Slim, reddish-brown Moor frog (Rana arvalis) sitting on a man's hand. This semiaquatic amphibian is a member of the family Ranidae, or true frogs.Lena Maximova/Shutterstock

Frogs and toads

There’s a good chance you were told that if you touched a frog or toad, you’d get warts. The truth is that there are no amphibians that will give you warts. Here’s the truth about other little fibs your parents told you when you were little.

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Set of five kitchen knives on wooden cutting boardIgor Dutina/Shutterstock

Kitchen knives

Even if you liked helping out in the kitchen, you were probably told to keep your hands away from the sharp kitchen knives. Teach young chefs knife skills early on to keep them safe and build their confidence in the kitchen.

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gas burning from a kitchen gas stoveNor Gal/Shutterstock

Stove and oven

Chances are, you probably touched the hot stove top even though your mom told you to stay away. About 5,800 children are injured each year by touching a hot heat element on a range, according to the Burn Foundation. Make sure you know these important tips to keep your home safe for your little ones

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car interior details of door handle with windows controls and adjustments. Car window controls and detailsbogdanhoda/Shutterstock

Car controls

What is it about buttons that make them irresistible to little hands? You were probably told to keep your hands off all those buttons in your parents’ car when you were little, including the power windows, radio, and thermostat.

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Close up Electric drill, Drill set, Screwdriver set, adapter on wooden table background and copy space. Hammer drill or screwdriver, Electric cordless hand drill on wooden. maintenance home concept.sirastock/Shutterstock

Real tools and hardware

There’s a good reason you were likely told not to touch tools in the workshop or garage. Tools like saws are obvious dangers for young hands, but even nails, screws, and staplers can lead to injured fingers when youngsters are left unsupervised. Here are 12 hands-on projects you can do with kids.

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Home interior decor in scandinavian minimalistic style: ceramic vases on the wooden shelf over concrete wall. Living room decoration in gray colors.Alena Ozerova/Shutterstock

Fragile figurines

There’s something about breakable figurines that attracts kids. Did you ever go into a store as a kid and get told, “Keep your hands to yourself”? And you probably got a lecture about what was off limits when you visited Grandma’s house.

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Multipurpose knife on wooden backgroundAfrica Studio/Shutterstock

Pocket knife

Pocket knives are appealing to little hands since they are shiny and have all sorts of functions and hidden tools. Admit it, you probably touched Dad’s pocket knife once or twice even when he told you not to. And once you were old enough to have one, it was the best gift you’d ever received! (But don’t bring it to school.) Check out these great gifts for kids who love DIY.

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Svetlana Larina/Shutterstock


“Don’t leave your fingerprints on the window!” The last thing your mom wanted after cleaning the windows was for you to touch them, or better yet, press your face up against them. And if you had old-fashioned double-hung windows with the internal weights, you were told to watch out because an open window could come crashing down on your fingers without warning.

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15 Things You Were Told Never to Touch as a KidKamil Martinovsky/Shutterstock

Unfamiliar animals

Were you told to leave animals alone when there wasn’t an adult around if you didn’t already know the animal? There’s a good reason for that. Even domesticated animals can get aggressive when confronted by unknown faces and situations.

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Dialing telephone keypad concept for communication, contact us and customer service supportBrian A Jackson/Shutterstock


Back before cell phones, many kids were told not to touch the phone (the one and only phone, as in the landline phone that sat on a little table somewhere). This may be especially true if one of your parents worked from home and took business calls at home. Ready to feel old? Here are some more things 2000s kids will never understand.

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Close up detail of a Poison Ivy Plant. Excellent high resolution image for accurate plant identification.Tim Mainiero/Shutterstock


“Leaves of three, let them be. Berries of white, take flight” is a common thing to tell kids to make sure they don’t touch poison ivy. Here are 12 plants in your yard that may be dangerous.

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dry dog food in bowl on wooden background top view279photo Studio/Shutterstock

Pet food

Young children are often drawn to pet food. They see the cat or dog eating it, and some pet food looks a lot like some people food! This attraction will likely end quickly if the child actually gets a taste. 

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bathroomcorey kaminski/Shutterstock


Like windows, kids love to play in front of mirrors. Chances are, Mom told you to keep your fingers off the bathroom mirror so she didn’t have to clean it once again. Plus, there’s the seven years of bad luck you’ll have to endure if you break a mirror! Learn the surprising real origins of superstitions you believed as a kid.

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black handgun in plastic Secure Storage CasePRESSLAB/Shutterstock

Guns and other weapons

If you grew up in a home with people who hunted, then guns, ammunition, and other collectible weapons, such as swords, were certainly things you were told never to touch. If you have guns at home, keep them locked up—according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the majority of all child and teen gun deaths happen at home.

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Professional makeup tools laying together in a composition. Flat lay. Makeup set.PHOTOCREO Michal Bednarek/Shutterstock

Mom’s makeup

The last thing Mom wanted was to clean her makeup off your face, or worse yet, the bathroom walls. If this happened, she probably made sure to hide her makeup so it didn’t happen again. Next, check out these funny lies real parents admit to telling their kids.

The Family Handyman
Originally Published on The Family Handyman