These stories are from the Reddit users listed below.
1/17. I worked on a custody dispute between a mother and grandmother, where both sides were absolutely outraged by the others' claims.
The mother was very upset that she was alleged to have been a stripper. "I was a prostitute, but I was NEVER a stripper!"
The grandmother in return, was furious that she was alleged to have 21 cats in her 2-bedroom apartment. "We only have 17 cats! How DARE she flat-out lie and say that we have 21 cats."
The child ended up living with the father in a different state.
2/17. An older retired man came to me because his condo association claimed he owed $300 in condo fees. He had refused to pay because he believed they provided no value - apparently they put the money towards BBQ events rather than snow clearing or upgrades to the building.
It was a matter of principle for him despite the fact my bill would go beyond $300 very quickly. So I wrote letters to the condo association demanding an accounting of their funds (which he was entitled to under their bylaws). Eventually they hired a lawyer who I had fun dealing with, explaining to him he would just have to sue him to recover the $300 because it was a matter of principle for my client and we went back and forth on it for awhile. I knew the condo association would never go forward with it because they would have to pay their lawyer way more than $300 to recover. It ended up just being a big game of chicken.
He must have spent a couple grand defending it, but he didn't care at all. He just wanted to stick it to his condo association.
3/17. A year out of law school I once had a potential client who wanted me to sue Canada. Apparently he could not get into the country due to his felony record. I tried to reason with him, that it was up to the sovereign nation to set its own rules regarding entry to the country but he insisted that we could make a lot of money suing Canada. I didn't take the case but I told him I might be able to get him a letter that said "sorry" -from Canada.
4/17. As a public defender I defended a grown man accused of stealing magic cards from Walmart. There was an hour long security video meticulously showing, from dozens of angles, that he was picking up sets of cards, unwrapping them and discarding the wrappers around the store. He insisted that he was innocent and we actually went to a jury trial instead of securing a plea deal. It took the jury 8 minutes to convict him and the judge laid into my client telling him that he was the worst thief he had ever seen.
I forgot the best part. At one point in the trial I had to spend 45 minutes explaining to the judge what magic cards are. He couldn't understand why anyone need more than one deck.
Continue reading on the next page!
5/17. Family law attorney here. I just had a custody case go back to court over eyeglasses. My client didn't like the glasses her ex bought the kid. So stupid. I want to go back to criminal defense. Gang homicide cases had nicer people to deal with than family law.
6/17. I'm not a lawyer but as a child I was taken into foster care and then returned to my father's custody so he had custody of me from ages 4-16. When I was 22 he tried to sue me for the costs involved in caring for me for that time, saying that he had no obligation to take custody of me and had only done so to "save" me from foster care. It was obviously dismissed and I don't talk to him any more.
7/17. While working at a plaintiffs employment firm, two memorable consults came in.
a) Guy gets fired for being late too much, wants to sue for discrimination because he has a sugar addiction and needs to stop in 7-11 for a big gulp before shift begins, and he usually ends up missing the bus.
b) A woman comes in, she was a bus driver & was terminated during her probationary period, she had three accidents in 6 weeks. She wants to sue for discrimination because she has anxiety & a therapy rabbit. All the while sitting at the conference room table petting the therapy bunny.
8/17. Not attorney, but one of my parents owns a law firm. Immigration law.
One guy comes in because immigration was breathing down his neck and trying to deport him. Why? Because they considered him to be a murderer and a torturer.
He had been at Home Depot one day, before the definitive interview that was to turn him into a Legal Resident, when he met some fellow immigrant (who he never saw before or since). They started chatting and the other guy imparted some advice: Tell the Americans that you were part of death squads in your country, hunting down and killing/torturing Communist guerrillas.
Knowing Americans hate Communists, he did just that at the interview. The officials were horrified because he just admitted to being a torturer and, due to participating in paramilitary organizations, a murderer. They closed his case and began a court case to deport him.
So my parents firm had to prepare an entire case to prove the fact that he had never so much as fired a rifle in his life and that his only real crime was being an idiot (that and making a misrepresentation to immigration officials).
Continue reading on the next page!
9/17. A woman called saying that she had a product liability suit involving animal crackers she gave to her daughter. I was thinking it was going to be something to do with food poisoning and keep listening. She explained that when she looked at the crackers, it looked like the monkey was holding its penis (it was a banana). This woman was mortified and ashamed. She said she told all her coworkers and they were very shocked and uncomfortable. I wanted to tell her she was nuts and that they were probably freaked out because you were talking about animal cracker dicks.
10/17. Not a lawyer but my uncle once had a client trying to sue Sears for distributing pornography to minors because he caught his 12 year old son masturbating to the lingerie section.
11/17. I worked in legal aid for a number of years. My most absurd case was one I actually took. The client was being evicted from her mobile home. In my state you usually own the mobile home but rent the lot on which the mobile home sits. Mobile homes are expensive to move. The cost of moving them can exceed the value of the home.
My client fell behind on her lot rent and owed the landlord a decent chunk of money but her landlord delivered the eviction notice improperly so I would have been able to get the case thrown out. (Only to have landlord correct their mistake and come right back into court again, but much more pissed off.) Shd had also recently put new gutters in their mobile home.
I negotiated a deal where my client would turn over title to the mobile home to the landlord, would move out and not owe the landlord any money. This was a good deal as the mobile home was worth roughly what she owed and she didn't get stuck paying for her landlord's attorneys fees. Having negotiated with this lawyer and this landlord numerous times before I knew that them waiving fees was a rare deal.
Then my client said she wanted her her landlord to pay for the gutters she recently had installed. The landlord, as expected, refused. Then she said she wanted to remove the gutters. I spent an hour of my life hammering out a deal for her to be able to remove the gutters. The entire time I doing this I'm thinking "this is not why I went to law school. This is not why I went into public interest law. I've got 70 other clients with serious issues whose cases I should be working on." I call my client to tell her that she could have the gutters, but she had to remove them and be out within 7 days. She said "I don't want the gutters I just wanted them to pay me for them." I still want that hour of my life back.
I left public interest law a couple years later. In my practice now I refuse to handle cases involving mobile homes.
Continue reading on the next page!
12/17. There's a lot of them:
I've been asked to evict a ghost. I actually did that one.
I regularly get phone calls promising to make me a millionaire if I'll "sue the police."
There's the completely guilty sex offender sitting in jail who wanted me to handle his appeal under circumstances that would have resulted in him being released...then immediately charged and convicted of a more serious crime.
So many...So many...
13/17. Lawyer in a small town here. I mostly do estate planning, probate, old people stuff, etc.
I have a client that sued his ex-wife for not selling the house after the divorce as she was supposed to. Judge held her in contempt, and asked what he wanted my client to do, and he had her thrown in jail. They are both nearly 80 years old.
The client also has something valuable buried on his property for his grandchildren after he dies. I have a sealed letter in my desk that he pays me a goodly sum each month to hold and give to his grandson when the old man dies.
14/17. A prospective client once called me to ask if I did personal injury cases because she "felt a fall coming on."
15/17. Criminal prosecutor here. A patrol officer pulled over a driver for some traffic violation, I think failure to signal. After a heated roadside exchange where the driver initially refused to turn over her license, she ultimately relented and "thrust the license with undue force" into the officer's outstretched hand.
The cop charged her with aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer. When asked to justify his actions he stated that "people need to learn to respect the police." We dismissed the charge, apologized to the defendant, and told the cop to never bring us something like that again. I can't recall if internal affairs was notified.
I work with the police every day, and the majority of them are good people. This guy was a shit.
Continue reading on the next page!
16/17. During Law School, I was a member of a legal clinic. We represented low income individuals, under the supervision of a licensed attorney/professor. We handled family law issues, but would try to point clients in the right direction if we could not personally help them. One man came in and stated that he wanted to sue Best Buy. Which is not uncommon, but why he wanted to sue BestBuy was different.
See this man said he purchased a refurbished computer from BestBuy, for his daughter, as a Xmas present. BestBuy had neglected to remove the previous owner's password screen and thus, this man and his daughter were unable to access the computer until they took it back to Bestbuy, which was understandably closed on Xmas day.
This, he said, caused his 12 year old daughter to begin to the question the very existence of Santa Claus. He and his daughter then argued the rest of the day, until finally he admitted to her that there was (Spoiler Alert) no Santa Claus. His words were "seeing your daughter lose faith in Santa ruined all Xmas's to come." He also claimed that now his daughter was "a real bitch" since she had stopped believing in Santa Claus.
What was more interesting is the amount of damages he requested. He stated he believed that BestBuy owed him "at least 25 million" because Xmas was ruined, his daughter will never believe in Santa again, and now he has to deal with her being "a real bitch" now.
I did not believe he had a any type of recourse against BestBuy for inadvertently demolishing his Daughter's belief in Santa, but even if I did, our clinic could not help him. I informed him that we only handled family law issues, and he should call the local Bar Association's lawyer referral service. He stated the Bar Association already told him they would not take his case.Then he proceeded to ask if I had children. I told him I did not. Then he proceeded to wish that all my future kids have their belief in Santa Claus ruined. He stated he would not help me, if that happened. He then told me to "fuck off" and left.
The whole time I was wondering how this guy's daughter believed in Santa Claus till age 12.
17. Not lawyer but paralegal. I took a cold call one evening from a gentleman who was clearly high (probably meth) and homeless. He wanted to sue his local police dispatch, 911, paramedics and a hospital (we are a civil litigation firm) because he narked on someone who was now (allegedly) trying to get him.
It was now the police station's fault that he would have to stab the guy and he repeatedly asked me if he should carry a knife so he could do said stabbing. He apparently had also asked the 911 dispatch this same question and all they would tell him is that no, he should not in fact go stab someone. Also asked if he should go stab the other guy before he had a chance to get him. He then wanted to come hide at our office while keeping his knife and deciding where to go stab the other guy.
Definitely most surreal phone call of my life thus far. And before it's asked, no we didn't report the situation to anyone. We are in a large city and he said his location was "up north", did not give us his name and we don't have caller ID (very old boss, hates technology because he can't use/understand it) so we really didn't have anything to give the police as far as useful information. Fun times.
with your friends!
Y'all know that one Hannah Montana song? “Everybody makes mistakes! Everybody has those days!" That's the song I sing to myself every time I accidentally burn myself while making ramen. It comforts me to know, however, that there are a lot of worse mistakes out there than some spilled ramen. Who knew?
In fact, some mistakes are so astronomical that they're remembered for decades afterwards, leaving the one who made the mistake a legacy of being a dumba**. Here are a few of them!!!
Some may argue that the existence of the Universe was a mistake. I disagree. It was clearly Zayn leaving One Direction. But these next few were pretty bad too.
If you do the math, this is also the reason why Hentai exists.
I'll say the wrong turn Franz Ferdinand's driver made that went right in front of Gavrilo Princip.
EDIT: yes I'm aware war may still have broken out even if Franz Ferdinand wasn't assassinated
Imagine you're Gavrilo Princip. The assassination plot you and your friends had been cooking up for about the last year or so has been a complete and total disaster, just a monumental f*ck-up of the highest degree. You're staked out at this deli thinking maybe, just maybe the car will pass by, and by some stroke of sheer luck, it does.
If you're Princip, this is nothing short of serendipity.
Petition to return to the ocean.Ocean Surf GIFGiphy
"Many were increasingly of the opinion that they'd all made a big mistake in coming down from the trees in the first place. And some said that even the trees had been a bad move, and that no one should ever have left the oceans."
"In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move." - Douglas Adams
This was, in fact, a monumental mistake.
Sears not beating Amazon to the punch.
Blockbuster not buying Netflix.
You thought THOSE were bad? Well gear up for their next few, because they are 100% accurate. Except the one about Cats, that movie slaps.
I don’t know sports, but sure.
Seahawks not running it.
I used to wear a Seahawks jersey whenever I took a test because I knew I would pass when I shouldn't.
CATS is great, y'all are just boring.Giphy
The Emoji Movie.
That live action movie about Cats is also up there.
Very fair point.
Humans are not wired to have that many social interactions and maintain that many relationships. Plus the echochambers it allows people to create for themselves, no matter how conspiratorial or vile their beliefs, means that stupid/evil people are no longer shunned into changing their mind.
Not sure it was worth being able to see what a celebrity had for lunch or what new "dance" your younger cousin and her tween friends are doing.
But in all seriousness, some horrible things may now have happened if the right thing was halted at the right time.
Washington called it.George Washington Disney GIF by Hamilton: An American MusicalGiphy
Voting for people based on what side of the political spectrum they're on. George Washington himself advised against political parties because he thought they would cause too much division in this country. Unfortunately for everyone, he was right.
Big oops on that one.
Barack Obama mocking Donald Trump at the Correspondents Dinner might have led directly to his 2016 run....
"Now, I know that he's taken some flak lately, but no one is happier, no one is prouder to put this birth certificate matter to rest than The Donald," Obama said. "And that's because he can finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter — like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?"
Then he turned serious: "But all kidding aside, obviously, we all know about your credentials and breadth of experience. For example — no, seriously, just recently, in an episode of 'Celebrity Apprentice' — at the steakhouse, the men's cooking team did not impress the judges from Omaha Steaks. And there was a lot of blame to go around. But you, Mr. Trump, recognized that the real problem was a lack of leadership. And so ultimately, you didn't blame Lil Jon or Meatloaf. You fired Gary Busey. And these are the kind of decisions that would keep me up at night. Well handled, sir. Well handled."
This is the best Star Wars and no one can change my mind.
I'll take 'Star Wars Christmas Special' for $100.
That atrocious pile of manure gave us Boba Fett, so without the Christmas Special there won't be The Mandalorian.
Wow, in this article, I openly admitted my love for Cats AND The Star Wars Holiday Special. So maybe my existence was the biggest mistake of all.
ANYWAY, I hope you enjoyed, and I hope you all feel a little bit better about yourself. Because when push comes to shove, at least you didn't accidentally start World War I
When I was younger, it seemed every adult believed that you couldn't swim for several hours after eating. Why did they all believe this? I fought them on this all the time, by the way. I shouldn't have had to, just because I'd eaten some barbecue during a pool party. Guess what, though? That belief is unfounded.
After Redditor MelonInACat asked the online community, "What is a common myth that has been debunked that too many people believe?" people told us about the myths that are still around despite credible evidence.
"Do you know how many wellness checks..."
You must wait 24 hours before reporting a missing person.
- 24 hours from when? The time you realized they were missing? The time you estimate they went missing? The time of the initial report to police?
- Who is the legal timekeeper? If this is a law, it must have a designated timekeeper for official records. City police? County sheriff? Do I hire a private attorney to file a time-keeping motion in court?
- If the most likely time to find a missing person is the first 24 hours, why would you wait 24 hours?
- If the person dies or is severely injured because the county/state refused to initiate a search, doesn't that put some liability on their office? It seems like that would've been tested in court by now.
There's no law governing how long you have to wait before notifying the police of a missing person. It's nonsense. File a report as soon as you suspect the person is missing or in danger.
Do you know how many wellness checks officers go on in a day? Call it in, man...
CALL IT IN!
Why would you wait so long? It's absurd and wastes valuable time. And in the event something has happened, you could very well be saving someone's life.
"Popping your knuckles..."
Popping your knuckles is actually harmless and the "study" that claimed it caused arthritis was heavily flawed. Studies now show that it has nothing to do with causing arthritis.
I heard this one all the time.
I didn't crack my knuckles anyway because I didn't understand the appeal. Why were all the first-graders so fascinated by this?
"That if you get too close..."
That if you get too close to a baby bird, the mother will smell human on the baby and abandon the nest.
You probably should still avoid touching baby birds for other reasons like disease or risking injury to the animal though.
"That waking a sleepwalker..."
That waking a sleepwalker is dangerous for them. They might wake up confused, but they'll be fine unless you scream at them or something.
"That your hair and fingernails..."
That your hair and fingernails still grow after you die. It's mainly an optical illusion. Your skin decays and shrinks, causing hair and fingernails to look like they've grown.
I grew up hearing this.
There are entire generations of people who believe this.
"We all know the story."
The War of The Worlds broadcast in 1938. We all know the story: Orson Welle's broadcast War of The Worlds over the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS). But people only tuned in partway through and heard the radio announcing that machines were landing in the country and were advancing and attacking. People panicked in the streets and thought aliens really were invading. There was hysteria on the streets, people were looting and traffic jams backed up as people tried to escape.
But it turns out, that isn't really true. It turns out barely anyone actually listened to the broadcast, and the few that were listening knew it was Orson Welles and knew it was just a broadcast of War of the Worlds. If there was anyone that did tune in and mishear it and panicked, it was nowhere near the hundreds and thousands that have been reported in this myth.
This one is definitely a popular urban myth by this point.
Cool story, but nowhere near as exciting as you might have heard. If anything, that mythos probably helped Welles get full artistic control of the projects, like Ciitizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons, that made him a star.
"You don't have to wait..."
You don't have to wait 3 hours after eating to swim. Every summer I have to fight my in-laws about it.
"Do you really think..."
That not turning your airplane mode on (smartphone) can interfere/jam communications.
Do you really think if a smartphone might endanger a whole plane with passengers they would let it fly?
"No amount of reasoning..."
That cats kill babies.
I've run into this so many times since having kids. And it's not the older grandmas making these statements. I've had 20-year-olds tell me that you can't have cats if you plan to have babies because "they'll steal their breath" or some other variation. No amount of reasoning or rationale will dissuade them of this belief.
"Maybe it's just one of those things..."
YOUR. BLOOD. IS. NOT. BLUE! Seriously tho, I was told that everyone's blood was blue on the inside when I was younger, and I honestly don't know why my Mom thought that. Maybe it's just one of those things that you only believe because your family has been saying it since your Grandma's Grandpa's Grandma's Grandma's Grandpa or something like that.
Here's some valuable advice, guys:
Google is your friend. It's very easy to debunk this stuff. I remember being taught that the tongue had taste zones––we even had to fill out a worksheet labeling the tongue's different zones. That's totally wrong, in case you haven't figured it out.
Have some myths you've heard you'd like more people to know have already been debunked? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments section below!
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As much as we're not supposed to feel satisfaction upon observing the struggles of other people, it can be hard to resist a silent, internal fist pump when some blunder occurs immediately after we tried to help the person prevent it.
It is all a result of stubbornness.
The person we're trying to help is stubborn. They think they know the best way to do something, or the exact information required for a given moment.
And, on top of that, they think we're being stubborn when we try to intervene.
So all of our attempts to help fall on deaf ears. And the results can be as calamitous as they are satisfying.
TenaciousBrit asked, "What's your 'I told you so' moment?"
Many people chose to talk about the times their friends or family ended up producing some truly entertaining physical comedy.
And the laughter was only enhanced with the knowledge that they'd just predicted the whole thing.
"Was picking beans with my sister and mom. To this day I still don't know why the fence was electric but it was. I touched it and I got zapped. It wasn't too bad but it hurt. I jumped away and my sister saw me, I said that it was an electric fence."
"Of course she just thought I was pranking her. I was trying to tell her the whole time we picked beans but she didn't believe me. Right at the end she touched the fence and she didn't see it coming at all... Her face was just like, 'Oh shi-' "
"Loved the car ride home, 'I told you... Idiot.' "
No Babies, Two Hurt Backs
"My sister and I were out sledding when we were kids at this place with a really steep hill. I had unknowingly gone down a sled path that had a jump in it, and when I landed it really hurt my back."
"So when I got back up to the top of the hill I told my sister 'don't go that way, the jump really hurts.' She called me a baby and didn't believe me that it really hurt so she decided she would go down that path on her sled."
"Well, she hit the jump and didn't get back up, turns out she fell so hard she had broken her leg. When we finally got her back up the hill and to the car, I got to tell her 'I told you so.' "
"This dumb a**hole woman wouldn't leave the llamas at our petting zoo alone, even after I warned her."
"Eventually they had enough and spit alllll over her. Green goopy spit from head to torso."
"She threw up a bunch and I laughed. Until I smelled it and then I was retching too."
Others recalled the times they trusted their instincts, only to be gaslighted by medical professionals.
But they did, eventually, get the help they needed. And the mixture of pride and frustration toward the other doctor was palpable.
"Had a weirdly dark freckle. The color of chocolate. I showed spouse and he called me a hypochondriac and if I go to a doctor, I'd be wasting their time."
"I went to the dermatologist. It was melanoma."
Years of Itchy Apples
"Since I was 14, my throat got itchy when I ate apples. I told my mom but she thought I just didn't want to eat apples and forced me to eat them."
"Went to the doctor's office and got a test for allergies."
"Turns out, I'm allergic to apples, peaches, and many other fruits."
This Was a Baby We're Talking About Here!
"My newborn baby was projectile vomiting after every feeding. I took her to the doctor several times, always ended up being sent away with suggestions to try a different formula. I tried like 4 different ones, no change."
"The 4th or 5th visit, they sent me away again with the same recommendation even though I pleaded with them to figure out what was wrong with my baby. I left the office and drove to the ER instead. She ended up having emergency surgery that day."
"The surgeon said she would have starved to death (or maybe dehydrated?) had she gone much longer without the surgery. I gave the doctors in that office a piece of my mind."
Dirt: Not Always the Answer
"Went to the doctor on and off for breathing problems to no avail. A lot of 'rub some dirt on it' mentality. Wound up in the ER as a result of an asthma attack. Kept the bracelet on and everything when I went back the next week to see him."
"Not as satisfying as I would've hoped."
And some people discussed the times they knew or predicted a piece of information, but couldn't seem to persuade someone else through dialogue or conversation.
But, of course, the truth always comes out.
Chose the Wrong Partner
"Lawyer here. Fired a partner who I found some real irregularities in their spending habits vs. what they were making after he couldn't provide a good answer to where it came from. Other partner left and started a new firm with them because they disagreed with my decision and refused to look at the evidence."
"Turns out he stole 500k of a clients money, got disbarred, and is now facing prison time. I told her to look at the evidence and she didn't listen. 🤷🏼♂️"
"Someone started talking about a bottle of Newman's Own salad dressing while at dinner with my family and I said something like 'I'm pretty sure that was started by the Actor/Race car driver Paul Newman.' to which one of my siblings replied 'No it was someone else.' "
"I grabbed the bottle and turned it around and started reading the label out loud. The first sentence was 'Paul Newman's career was acting, but his passion was auto racing.' I stopped reading after that."
He Knew Immediately
"Bed frame wasn't properly lashed down while moving, partner insisted the weight of the frame would keep it in place."
"Flew into the middle of a major intersection on a left turn. We dodged four lanes of oncoming traffic to collect the pieces."
"I fixed my partner with a look that could peel paint, and he said 'I know, I know, you told me so and you're right. I'm sorry.' "
"I still give him sh** for it every time we move something. It's funny now, but god damn was I pissed at the time."
We can draw a couple of lessons from this list.
First, know that, at the end of the day, you can only do your best to share your opinion. You need to accept that they're going to do what they're going to do.
Second, when someone tries to give you advice, maybe take a moment to listen.
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One of the most upsetting aspects of the Covid-19 pandemic––which is saying a lot, frankly––is the number of people who have been so affected by misinformation and disinformation. You know the ones to which I refer: These are the people who are convinced the virus is a hoax despite the lives it's claimed and the devastation it has wrought on society at large. Disinformation kills––there are stories of people who remained convinced that Covid-19 is a hoax even while intubated in the ICU, even up to their last breath.
After Redditor asked the online community, "Doctors of Reddit, what happened when you diagnosed a Covid-19 denier with Covid-19?" doctors and other medical professionals shared these rather unsettling stories.
"The one that sticks out in my mind..."
I'm a doctor working in acute internal medicine. I've seen lots of COVID over the last 12 months, probably 300+ cases. The one that sticks out in my mind the most was a 70-year-old lady with COPD. She refused to have a vaccine because she didn't trust it despite the fact she was eligible for one for weeks beforehand (in the UK). Subsequently caught COVID and was admitted to hospital. She repeatedly doubted this was the diagnosis. She refused to go to our COVID High Dependency Unit despite quite significant respiratory failure. Of course, she deteriorated over a number of days to the point where she was on maximal oxygen on the ward and at that point finally accepted treatment in HDU with high flow oxygen, although continued to doubt she had COVID. Died within 24 hours of her HDU admission having refused to go to ICU.
And of course, what did her family say? They were convinced she never had COVID and even went as far as accusing us of withholding life-saving treatment from her. Unfortunately, there's no treatment for stupidity.
Indeed there isn't.
A completely avoidable tragedy.
"My worst experience..."
My worst experience was when a 2-year-old kid got diagnosed with COVID. His mother had brought him with c/o fever and diarrhea. The child was severely dehydrated and so we had to do a mandatory swab test since we planned to admit him. It came positive and the mother refused to admit it. We were ready to perform a repeat test and we even advised the parents to get tested. Her defense was "The child never left the house. It's just me and the father who go to work daily. The grandmother babysits while we are away. How can he even get COVID without leaving the house." She had called her husband, he came with 10-15 relatives in a car, they broke a few chairs and then left with the baby. We just informed about the case to the COVID control centre.
"Only one patient ever accused me..."
Infectious disease doctor here. Seen about 450-500 COVID patients in the hospital since it all started. Only one patient ever accused me of using the nasal swab to give him COVID (along with a microchip). A handful have ranted nonstop about China. Everyone else has been sick enough to accept it, but lots still refuse the idea of vaccination even after being in the ICU.
"I had a lady who was maxed out..."
I had a lady who was maxed out on high flow (the next step is breathing tube) who still refused to believe she had Covid and was holding a negative test in her hand that she had taken a week prior.
The denial is so strong here.
It would be sad if it wasn't so horrifying.
"I'm an attending physician..."
I'm an attending physician at our Triage Unit. On a Friday, an older gentleman (60 + years) came in with his entire family (wife, sister, BIL, 2 nephews, and 3 children), none of them with a face mask. All had mild COVID symptoms except him, he was saturating 80% with evident shortness of breath. We insisted on doing PCR and a chest CAT scan looking for COVID but he and his wife refused, saying that COVID wasn't real and it was just a bacterial infection. The more we talked with him the more agitated he got to the point that his face was red. We suggested hospitalizing him to stabilize him and start treatment, but they accused us of exaggerating his symptoms and that we only wanted to hospitalize him so we could steal the liquid in his knees (a stupid rumor that was going around when this whole thing started).
They both cursed at us and said they were going to a better hospital to get antibiotics. Fast forward 24 hours later on Saturday, I get a call from the hospital next county over telling us that they intubated one of our patients because he went into respiratory failure when he arrived and they had to transfer him here because they don't have the appropriate equipment. We transfer the patient on Sunday only to find out on the CAT scan he had 90% of lung damage. He passed away on Monday morning.
Just before the family took the body away, I gave the widow the death certificate (that I filled out) and before walking away, she turns around and waves the certificate yelling "See! I told you it wasn't COVID! It says here: "Death due to pulmonary pneumonia due to SARS-CoV-2! I knew it was a bacteria!" I told her: "SARS-CoV-2 is COVID-19, ma'am."
The lengths people are willing to go to stay in denial astound me.
Basic critical thinking appears to have gone out the window here.
I'm a family doc who mostly does outpatient.
I live in a pretty conservative area with a good proportion of COVID deniers, so I've been seeing COVID deniers since this mess became politicized (I've lost a few patients over the mask mandate).
Anyway, I'm pretty pleased to say that several of my COVID denying patients have completely turned their attitude around when they (or a close family member) contracted COVID. Even if their case wasn't severe, the sudden terror that they could wind up on a ventilator overnight really puts the fear of God into people.
Unfortunately, I still have some patients who are still pretty obnoxious despite their covid diagnosis. They mostly dig deeper into paranoia. If not about the virus itself, then about the circumstances surrounding them contracting it.
"If Fauci had done his job from the beginning, it never would've hit this town."
"It's the entire fault of Obamacare that I can't get the experimental immunoglobulin treatment!" (It's not, your eligibility for the infusion is dependent on a list of risk factors).
And, probably my favorite...
"So I have COVID and it's completely your responsibility to fix it. I need you to send Hydroxychloroquine, Zinc, Vit D, Lisinopril, and azithromycin to the pharmacy..." Then they proceed to get pissed at me when I don't.
"During our peak time..."
I'm an emergency department physician in the US. I work in an area that had the highest death rate for a solid couple of weeks in the country.
During our peak time when we had national news crews here covering how we were a s***show, saw numerous people screaming their Covid disease wasn't real despite being hypoxic and on large amounts of oxygen due to Covid. That was an unpleasant time as this was still early (May/June) and it was extremely political like people apparently plotting to kidnap our state governor due to lockdowns.
Saw a lot of people refusing Covid testing who needed admission for non-covid purposes because the swabs would give them covid or put some sort of tracking device. They weren't pleased when they then had to be admitted to our full-blown Covid floors. Our Covid floors resembled a warzone because they were understaffed and relative s***hole conditions as we basically converted hallways into covid floors.
Also saw a lot of people young people who weren't exactly deniers but thought you basically couldn't sick if you were young. Lots of people with their lungs permanently scarred or at a minimum a couple of weeks of misery and/or spread it to their loved ones who got extremely ill.
"The willful cognitive dissonance..."
Physician here. The willful cognitive dissonance is real. It never ceases to amaze me how many patients will refuse assistance from me to register to get vaccinated, make claims that vaccines are harmful, but then accept my medical care on anything else that suits their whim. Patients absolutely have the autonomy to refuse care, but why would you continue to see a physician and accept their medical advice and care if you think they would simultaneously recommend something to you that would be harmful?
I've posed this question to patients who are vaccine-hesitant: "Why would you let me manage your diabetes and hypertension if you think I would harm you by recommending vaccinations?" You cannot get any kind of thoughtful response aside from, "I just don't want to be vaccinated."
"Some denier patients lived..."
RN here with most of 2020 spent in COVID land. I never had anyone refuse treatment when things got serious. I know some of the MDs I worked with got yelled at, like the rest of us...but honestly, that happens frequently anyway.
Some denier patients lived, many of which had accepted reality by the end of their stay after seeing what we all were going through to treat them.
Some died telling me I was a sheep or an idiot or a liar between gasps of air.
COVID didn't care.
This comment is strangely poetic.
Covid definitely doesn't care. The virus lays waste to people and... that's it. Good luck with your games of Russian roulette.
"People are crazy."
I work on a COVID unit and I ran into a patient like this. They'd tell me over and over again about how they weren't really sick and about how I didn't need to be gowned up in PPE. They even tried to take my face shield off. If you test positive for COVID two times then you have COVID! People are crazy.
Covid disinformation is a very serious problem and it's costing people their lives.
What can be done about it?
News literacy matters: It's important to get information from verifiable sources. Scientists and medical professionals are trustworthy. Those with backgrounds in public health know what they're talking about. Some conspiracy theory you received from your distant cousin on WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger is not worth your time or consideration.
Have some of your own Covid denial stories to share? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
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