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LONDON — Moms & Dads: Do you remember what your world was like before you brought kids into it? Does it seem like an eternity ago? A recent survey, of 2,000 British parents reveals what they miss most about life before children.

According to the survey, commissioned by Pampers Pure Protection, more than anything, parents miss driving their cars in peace, watching television, and sparking “romance” with their significant other without worrying about anyone else in the house. In all, 44% admit that their sex lives were put on hold once kids entered the picture.

Other small aspects of life pre-kids that many in the survey remember well were the ability to leave the house at a moment’s notice without getting a babysitter, and spending money on themselves without feeling guilty. Parents also miss the time in their lives where they weren’t forced to schedule vacations outside of school time.

And of course, it seems like forever ago that parents routinely enjoyed a full night’s sleep.

Despite the perks of those glory days, all parents agreed giving up these benefits was worth it to have children. In fact, nine out of ten said having a child was the best thing they’d done in their lives. And though two-thirds feel life was easier before kids, 71% still feel that they’re happier now and feel more fulfilled in their lives since having children.

Admittedly, seven in ten parents say they underestimated the impact their first child would have on their lives, and feel they made many compromises along the way.

Still, most parents — a whopping 87% — wouldn’t pass up the opportunity to relive the childless days if they could do so just for a day.

Here are the top 50 things parents miss most:

1. Saturday morning sleep-ins
2. A clean and tidy house
3. Watching television in complete peace
4. Leaving the house at a moment’s notice, without having to worry about a babysitter
5. Spending money guilt free
6. Having a shower or bath without being disturbed
7. Date nights
8. Going to the toilet without being disturbed
9. Vacations/holidays that didn’t hinge on school breaks/terms
10. Getting a full night’s sleep
11. Sitting in the sun on a vacation/holiday without having to entertain a child
12. Browsing the shops rather than rushing around
13. Nights out with friends
14. Romance
15. Being able to pop to the shops when you want
16. A toned stomach
17. Adventurous or cultural vacations/holidays
18. Silence
19. Just sitting down to read a book during the day
20. Sex
21. Being able to relax in a pub beer garden
22. Cheap vacations/holidays
23. Not being asked ‘Why’ all the time
24. Having a car journey in peace
25. Suffering a hangover without having to look after a child at the same time
26. Watching grown-up TV during the daytime
27. Being able to finish a cup of tea before it goes cold
28. Snacking on treats without having to share them, or eat them in secret
29. Going to the cinema to watch anything other than an animation
30. Pre-baby boobs
31. Being able to travel light when you go away
32. Being able to have your hair / nails done guilt free
33. The days when you could watch your own film instead of watching the same kid’s film over and over
34. Not having to watch what you say or talk in code because of ‘little ears’
35. A clean car
36. Daytime drinking
37. Not having to always be wondering where the nearest toilet is, in case they need a wee
38. Not having to fork out on babysitters (if you even manage to go out)
39. Being able to swear whenever you want
40. Sitting down to read the newspaper with a morning coffee
41. Spa days
42. A good diet
43. Being able to go down the stairs without navigating a stair gate
44. Being able to do a wash without having to check the pockets of everything going in
45. Being able to listen to your music in the car instead of nursery rhymes
46. Being able to listen to music or the radio ‘normally’ instead of the same kid’s song on repeat
47. Having a small car instead of a people carrier
48. Having make up in your handbag instead of wet wipes
49. Being able to plug things in without having to always remove the plug adapters first
50. Not smelling a bit like baby sick all the time

The survey was conducted by OnePoll.

About Ben Renner

Writer, editor, curator, and social media manager based in Denver, Colorado. View my writing at

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