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People Break Down Which Things Everyone Should Know Before Getting Into A Relationship

Person symbolically offering a paper heart to someone else
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Let's face it, being single is tough for a lot of us, especially when there's a special occasion coming up or all of our closest friends and family are in relationships while we're alone.

But the Reddit community wanted to remind the singles out there that there's more to think about in starting a new relationship than just feeling those butterflies.


Redditor Huge-Tackle-2152 asked:

"What is something everyone should know before getting into a relationship?"

Actions Above Words

"Love is an action and a choice. You need to make the choice to love someone you’re in a relationship with by showing that love to them."

"Love isn’t just the romantic feelings you have for someone. You have to actually 'do' love."

- eeo11

It's a Two-Way Street

"Not only are you getting a partner, but you also need to BE one, as well."

"Many people want to be in a relationship because they want someone, but they are not ready to actually be a partner, as well."

- BlockOfTheYear

Be Communicative

"Communication. If you're not communicating, then you're never going to be on the same page about anything, fights will never end, and problems will keep festering and come back to bite the both of you, etc."

- Codaxic

Argue Mindfully

"How you fight is important. It is so easy to hurt someone once you are close to them and you can't unsay things."

- Headgh

Accept the Dealbreakers

"Accept the other person as they are. You won’t be able to change them or who they are at their core, which means that if there’s something about them that’s a dealbreaker for you, don’t expect that it will ever change."

"Take that as your cue to leave or not start dating."

- eeo11

Accept Yourself, Too

"If you're pretending to be someone you aren't to get into the relationship, it's not going to work."

"You gotta cast your net a little further. There's a difference between putting yourself out there and pretending to be into s**t you secretly hate to land a partner."

- Vegan_Harvest

Not Everyone Is Your Person

"Don't chase someone who has made it abundantly clear they do not want you. If someone is interested in you, there won't be any confusion. It will be cut and clear."

"If you find yourself trying to change fundamental parts of who you are, to be what someone needs, that's not your person."

- LilRedChefInTheHood

You May Be the Problem

"Nobody is perfect, not even you. If you think someone is perfect, you are lying to yourself."

"If you think you are perfect, you are lying to yourself and everyone else. (And they are tired of your pompous bulls**t.)"

- RedIcarus1

Your Happiness, Your Responsibility

"If you think the other person’s job is to MAKE you happy, everyone is going to have a bad time."

"Of course, you can and should contribute to each other's happiness, but the individual must choose positivity and levity and work on their inner demons. No other people can achieve that for you."

- AnnoyinglyEarnest

Oops.

"Lust isn't love."

- TOMTEXOMA

Be Honest About Your Intentions

"Here’s one based on a painful experience of mine. If you’re not looking for a relationship and only want a f**k buddy, don’t pretend you want a relationship just to keep getting someone’s attention."

"You’ve wasted their time and will negatively impact their ability to have a relationship in the future."

- SectorZed

Don't Compromise on the Important Things

"But don’t compromise on your deal breakers or hope you can change someone. You should find someone who is compatible with you on the big things: what kind of life you want, if you want kids, how you handle disagreements, how you handle money, etc."

"Also, learn what common red flags for abuse are in relationships. Don’t compromise on those."

- ShimmeringShips

The Relationship Has More than Two People

"Have you met their family and friends?"

"Once you form a relationship, family and friends come along for the ride."

- Back2Bach

They Won't All Work Out

"Sometimes it’s just not worth fighting for. Relationships have hard times. But it shouldn’t ALWAYS be a hard time."

"Sometimes you just have to accept your energies don’t align and move on to allow yourself true happiness."

- Timeless_Clock_13

But Sometimes It's Worth It

"Love is a choice. You can be mad, you can be sad, you can be frustrated with your life, and it might reflect on your perspective of the other person, you might not even feel 'in love' at that moment, but you can always choose to love them."

"And usually, it's worth it."

- perunch

While the subReddit could admit that relationships can be pretty great, there are many considerations that go into committing to it.

From staying true to ourselves, to connecting to the other people in our partner's life, there's much more to love than romantic dates.

Customer Service Clapbacks
Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

Customers can be total jerks sometimes, and workers want nothing more than to put those people in their place. From employees who finally stood up for themselves to Karens who got what they deserved, these clap-back stories are sure to give you great karmic satisfaction:

Take A Breath

woman standing on food counterPhoto by Robert Bye on Unsplash

I was working at a coffee shop in a busy downtown area. There was a businessman that was notorious for being awful with our staff. One morning, he came in and ordered a coffee and a cranberry scone. We happened to be out of cranberry scones that day, and when I informed him of this, he flew off the handle and started swearing at me.

But I was NOT going to let him speak to me like that. I looked him square in the eye and said, “You’re a grown man throwing a temper tantrum over a cranberry scone. Sort your life out”. I then calmly turned to the next customer. The next day, he apologized, and was never a problem again.

Just Look!

At a pawn shop, this lady paid me $20, and I gave her change. She flipped out because she knew she'd given me a $100 bill. She screamed, cursed, and called me every name in the book; just lost her mind. The whole time, she was saying she knew she paid with a $100 bill be she'd just put one in her wallet earlier. I asked her repeatedly to just check her wallet to see if the $100 bill was still there or not.

She just kept yelling she didn't need to check because she knew she'd given it to me. Eventually, she checked, and all the anger just blew out of her. She was mortified, the $100 bill was there.

Picture Imperfect

I worked at a photo printing lab, and we got people in all the time who claimed we were stupid and had messed up their pictures. One woman had us print 800 vacation pictures. They were bad quality, dark, and out of focus. When she came to pick them up, she insisted that we had ruined them, that they were perfect in her camera, and that she had a very expensive camera so there was no way the pictures could be dark or out of focus.

We finally gave her money back, even though we had done nothing wrong and were out a lot of time and paper. She called us 30 minutes later and told us she was at a store across town, and they had reprinted all of her pictures and they were beautiful, in focus, and nice and bright. I had to tell her that the same person who owned our store also owned the store across town and that not only would it have taken that store several hours to reprint 800 pictures, but their printer was down that day, so they couldn't have printed anything.

She hung up on me.

A Toilet Situation

woman beside black monitorPhoto by zibik on Unsplash

I had a customer come in to do a return on a toilet seat. He went to the customer service person who told him the store policy, which is that the store doesn't do returns on plastic seats. He told her he just took it out to check it and it's not the right shape, but she just repeated store policy. Since there was no manager around to override it, we couldn't return it.

The customer service person braced herself because she knew it was coming—he was about to have a major adult tantrum. He started raising his voice, berating her. She's super shy and quiet, so she kind of just shut down. The other cashier then said very loudly, "It's dirty, he didn't just take it out. He's a liar". That's when he became overwhelmingly angry. I reached over, pushed her lightly aside, and said, "You're on break, go upstairs". She protested but I repeated myself, and she left. The customer asked what she said.

I replied, "Don't worry about it, I'll handle it later. We aren't doing your return". He started to protest again, but I cut him off. "I don't care. I don't care what you did or what you have to say. We aren't doing your return today. You've got two options: either take your toilet seat home and come back tomorrow and talk to a manager or take your seat and get out of here. Either way, you're leaving here with your seat".

He left after that. From that point on, managers were required to be present at all shifts.

Free For All

I was a server years ago and this woman who’s usually a nice lady comes in. We had messed up her salmon a few days prior, so the manager had given her a free meal card which is good for one single meal. Well, a few days later she comes in with at least fifteen people about an hour before we closed, and they all ordered seafood and steak anorderednks, and her whole party is awful to me and my friend who is another server.

One guest even threw his plate on the ground, breaking it and throwing food all over because his steak was overcooked. After all this, the other server went to take the woman her check. It was a couple of hundred dollars, and she whipped out the free meal card! The server takes it to the register, comps one of the meals off, and comes back with the new total and the woman loses it.

“I have a free meal card! This was one meal for all of us! It should be free!” And the server just stiffens up and politely explains that that isn’t how it works and stresses that she had to have known that she couldn’t have brought fifteen people in here and expected free meals for everyone. The woman stands up and pours her drinks all over my friend and my friend runs to the back to get the manager. My friend kept her calm, but the manager flipped and told the lady to get out and never come back.

That was a crazy night.

Reaching My Limit

When I worked at Subway in high school, there was this guy in his 30s that came in with his wife almost every day. He was awful and talked to you like an idiot. Not because he was in a bad mood either, but because he thought it was funny to be a jerk to kids working fast-food jobs. One day I had enough and took his sandwich I was in the middle of making and spiked it into the garbage can and told him to get out. He told me I couldn't talk to customers that way and I told him "I just did".

He called the owner and dropped my name, and she told him that if I blew up on him like that it was probably deserved, and she asked him to not return. I for sure thought I was fired. Lucky for me, the owner knew exactly what customer she was talking to, knew me well enough to know it take well lot to get me irritated, and knew that I wouldn't do something like that for no reason.

Full Of Gas

a person holding a drillPhoto by Jesse Donoghoe on Unsplash

I was working at a gas station in a very rich part of town. During a nice summer day, a prime example of the douchebag variety of the human species drove his super-expensive Lamborghini in, and in that haughty, I'm-rich-so-you-must-do-what-I-say voice, demanded that it be filled with premium. The attendant started to do so, only the guy immediately snatched the nozzle from him and screamed "You're too stupid to do this on your own".

We're in Oregon, where you can't pump your own gas because of state flaws. Well, being that he's an idiot, gas spills out from the nozzle all over his sparkly jerk mobile. At this point, he truly flips out, and storms into the store, where I'm working as the cashier and de facto manager. He immediately demands to speak to the owner, and that we are going to pay to have his car repainted AND he's not going to be paying for his gas.

I try my best to calm the situation, but he's got a good rage going and doesn't want to be calmed down. While he's spewing forth, I notice that an officer from the local department is about to come into the store to get snacks, a drink, or some such. s gives me a nice idea: "Sir, I'm afraid that the gas is in your tank, and you pumped it yourself, so you are going to have to pay".

He exploded. He asks, exactly, do you think you can do if I just go and get in my car and leave?" Thank you, good Lord, for your timing. He says this, at full bellow, right as the officer walks through the door. My response? "Well, I can't do much ice West Linn Officer standing behind you will probably take you in for second-degree theft".

This second-degree and to see the officer, who has a very evil-looking smile on his face, nodding vigorously. Yeah, he shut up, paid, and we never saw him again.

The Slimy Sandwich

I worked at a sandwich place for a year or so. I was making this dude a hot chicken sandwich; I brought the sandwich up to the front and tried to hand it to him. Then, he just looks at me for a second then proceeds to scream and swear at me for spitting in his sandwich. I didn't spit in his food and told him this over and over. The dude was yelling at me for probably five minutes.

I was patient with him and gave him a new sandwich made by a different employee and refunded his order is dude decided that he wanted to be a jerk, so he hung around the store telling customers I was going to spit in their food and swearing a ton. I waited for my manager to step forward and kick the guy out, but he was just pretending nothing was going on.

Finally, as I was making food for this family with young kids, who were uncomfortable, I lost it. I slammed down the knife I was using, startling everyone because I had been so respectful to this guy for so long and screamed "We are a family-friendly establish family-friendly quit being a jerk and get out of this store!"

For whatever reason, that worked, and he left while swearing at me. I apologized to the family for the guy, and my swearing at him. I nearly lost my job from that and got a long lecture from my boss about how the customer is always right and that I need to be respectful. Luckily my manager vouched for me, saying that I was extremely respectful until the guy started making other customers uncomfortable.

Where’s The Manager?

I was a manager of a CVS, and during an extremely busy time of the day, I opened the Photo Lab register to help the regular cashiers keep the lines down. I announced that I was open, and the nearest customer happily took her merchandise to my register. Then, the second nearest customer started loudly saying that she was first, and it was her turn. I said she will be the next after I take care of this customer.

When it was her turn, she started going off on me that it was rude of me to not help her...blah blah blah. I ignored her as much as possible. She kept going on and on until I said, "Lady, I opened this register as a favor so the wait time would be shorter. If you would rather wait in one of the regular register lines, you are more than welcome". She was shocked that I talked back to her.

She found one of the employees who was stocking a shelf in the candy aisle and demanded that she speak to a manager. That employee called for a manager over the intercom, and I happily walked over to the candy aisle to see her waiting for a manager. With a big smile on my face, I let her know I was the manager on duty. She walked out of the store without saying a word...

I was off work like an hour later, but apparently, she sent her husband in looking for me, but I was at home by then. They complained to corporate. I was only told to not take my job so personally, and that was it.

Do You Know Who I Am?!

man in white crew neck t-shirtPhoto by engin akyurt on Unsplash

My folks used to own a Tastee Freez in South Carolina and I worked in it most summers as a teenager. Since it was a small town, everyone knew each other and most went to the same church. One Sunday night, one of the ladies from the church called in at about five minutes after ten and tried to order a 20-piece chicken nugget, even calling them McNuggets.

When I informed her that we closed at ten and the grill and fryers were already cleaned and closed for the night, she got irate with me and started yelling in my ear about how she knew the owners of the place and she was going to get me fired and did she know who I was talking to. I calmly replied that yes, Mrs. Greene, I knew exactly who I was talking to, since my parents and I lived right across the street from her, and she had asked us in church that morning what time we closed for the night.

We were never on speaking terms again.

How Dare You!

I worked at a Walgreen's photo lab, and it was my first job. There was a nice lady that used to come by every now and then to have her pictures developed, and whenever they came out, we would chat about them because I thought they were great. One day while we were talking, another customer arrived. When I asked her how I could help her, she started yelling at me because she didn't like the way her photos came out.

She threw them on the counter and was angry with me and wanted to speak to my manager. I called for my manager, and she came over and tried to calm the angry lady down. The angry lady started pointing at me and said that I messed up her photos, and blah, blah, blah, threats, better business bureau, yak, yak, yak. I didn't know what to tell her other than I'm sorry and that I didn't know what was wrong.

I told her I processed them like I was supposed to and that most of the work was done by the machine, to which she immediately replied, "Then what good are you?" Suddenly, the nice lady with the cool pictures pipes up in this authoritative tone, "How dare you? How dare you say that to him and accuse him of ruining your pictures? He already said he was sorry. Do you realize that what you said is going to cost him his job? shame on you".

The angry lady just got quiet, realized how she was acting and left. I thanked the nice lady, and it made me tear up a bit afterward.

Whopping Problem

During high school, I worked at a Burger King. There was one woman who would always come into the drive-thru during the afternoon and ask for a Whopper Jr. with extra onions. And I mean, a LOT of extra onions. And no matter how many we put in, she always came into the store and complained that there weren't enough. This happened in the middle of the afternoon most of the time, so we didn't care.

However, one day, we had four buses full of US Army enlistees at the store at the same time. Convoys of chartered buses would go by periodically, and they usually stopped at our store because the bus drivers knew my boss. Now, these people were always the nicest, most respectful people you can imagine, which was a welcome change after dealing with jerks the whole day.

They also always ordered a ton of food—all king size, tons of double and triple whoppers, the whole nine yards. My boss would always have me give them the "senior discount" (15% off), and they enjoyed that immensely because it said that they were getting a senior discount on their receipts. Anyway, as nice as they were, they strained our store to the limit because they ordered so much food—and things spiraled quick.

So, we were almost literally going hammer and tongs to keep up, and that's when the onion woman came into the drive-thru. My boss told me to just grab two handfuls of onions and put them on the sandwich because she didn't need a scene when we were as far behind as we were. I could barely close the sandwich because of the onions, but I managed it, and we gave it to her.

Now remember, the store was full of US Army enlistees. They probably had not had fast food for weeks. And the line was out the door. So, the woman came in and pushed her way past all of the people to scream over the counter that she didn't have enough onions. My boss was mad, so she took the sandwich, handed it to me, and told me to do whatever the heck I wanted with it.

I dumped the entire tub of onions on this sandwich, wrapped it up tight, and taped it shut. My boss then handed it to the woman, and she opened it right on the counter to "make sure there were enough", even though the burger was like six times bigger than normal. Then, the best thing that could have happened, happened—the thing exploded all over the place. So, freaking awesome. All the enlistees were trying not to laugh. One of their officers was waiting by the counter for his food, and finally, he just gave up and started laughing his face off.

The others took this as a cue, and she had about 250 of these guys all laughing at her. It was one of the best days of my high school life. She didn't come back for a month, and she never ever complained about not having enough onions ever again.

I’m The Most Important

man in red and white button up shirtPhoto by Afif Ramdhasuma on Unsplash

I only ever lost it on a customer once when I was working at an office supply store. The customer was one of those self-important money-pusher types. He came in during the lunch rush on a day when we were shorthanded. He wanted to buy a phone. I normally would have helped him, but I was stuck on the register. Even so, I did everything I could to help this guy anyway.

When I was finally able to focus on him exclusively, he launched into a lecture along the lines of how he specifically was the most important person in the store. And I lost it. I barely remember what I said to the guy. I know I tried to walk away first, but he pushed it. I ended up tearing into him so badly that he basically ran from the store, and the assistant manager on duty was too stunned to do anything about the incident.

Swapping The Toppings

When I worked at a sandwich shop, I got assigned to train a new girl, who was shadowing me at my register. A big woman comes in with two other gentlemen and orders a croissant sandwich with no tomatoes, or "sub" avocado. I proceeded to explain to her that I couldn't do that, as tomatoes and avocados are not equivalent. Before I even get that far she interrupts me, starts to mock the way I was talking to her, and tells me that they've done it for her before.

I stood my ground and told her regardless of if someone else had done it before, I wasn't going to because that's now how it works. She gets super angry and says some stuff to me, then looks at my trainee and says, "Don't learn from her, Cynthia, she's a bad one". She then struggled to pay with her card because she was broke apparently, and she gave me lip when I said her card was declined.

When she walked away, the two gentlemen she was with came up to me and apologized. I was so checked out, I just said, You're the one who must deal with her every day, not me".

An Explosive Day

I had already put my two weeks in at the gas station when a woman comes with a van and tries to pump gas with the vehicle running. I told her over the intercom to shut the engine off. She started to argue with me over the intercom, and I just turned it off to deal with the small lineup inside. She comes inside and starts arguing with me. I calmly told her the rules are for safety, and if she wants to fuel while the engine is on, she can try another gas station.

She starts screaming telling me I'm just being a jerk to ruin her day. I just snapped in front of everybody and yelled back, "Oh really!!? am I in your place of business harassing you for following the rules so people don't explode??!" To which all the other customers laughed. She kept arguing back, so I said fine, go fill your tank. As soon as she was outside, I locked the doors.

I told the customers they could leave if they wished by pushing the black handle, and nobody did until the irate customer sped off.

A Stressful Sunday

woman in black and white striped long sleeve shirtPhoto by Julien L on Unsplash

I didn’t explode, but a customer screamed at me in front of the entire restaurant. She ordered breakfast for her family on a Sunday, and we told her there would be a 45-minute wait for such a huge order to go. She came 10 minutes later, furious we didn’t have it ready yet. She was so angry that this was causing her to miss church. She ended up leaving after calling me a string of names, without the food. Then came the most unexpected turn of events...

She came back later, hugged me, told me she was sorry, and said something along the lines of having a sick child. I don't know. I block bad stuff at work out of my head, but the hypocrisy still cries out in my brain from time to time.

The Noise Of The City

I work at a hotel, and at around 10:30-ish, a woman called down very upset because of a noise coming from outside. The hotel is downtown, and it was Saturday night. People were partying. Anyway, she told me to fix it immediately, and I informed her that the noise ordinance for our city as far as private residences go does not kick in until midnight, so I couldn't do anything until then as far as reporting it goes.

I offer to move her to a different room on another side of the hotel, away from the noise source. She refuses, saying it was late. She then demands that I come up with another solution. I tell her there isn't one. I tell her I can call someone, but they won't do anything until at least midnight, probably later. I again tell her that we have other rooms in a quieter area of the hotel, but she begins to shout that she doesn't want to move and just wants me to make them quiet.

This is when I flipped. I didn't yell at her, but I said something along the lines of "Ma'am, I have offered you the only solution I have to this problem, and you have refused it twice. At this point, I can't do anything to help you". She blew up and threatened to call our corporate office, and I told her she was welcome to do that, that I looked forward to speaking with them, and gave her my name. Then, I hung up on her.

I Have My Arms Full

I work in an anime store in the mall. One of the things we have is a wall of Funko Pops. This guy brought up like 10 to the register and was just being ridiculously impatient the entire time. Our cash register is a little more than a calculator, so punching in each thing can take some time. Before I even hand him his receipt, he shouted: “Can I get a bag?!?”, so I said we don’t have any.

Watching him waddle out of the store with 10 pops stacked high made me feel better.

The Worst Last Day

a woman in a white dress is looking at a shelf of foodPhoto by Rey Joson on Unsplash

It was my last day working in a common retail chain. 20 minutes before my shift ended, I was helping a middle-aged woman do a return and exchange with coupons. She was getting agitated, because our coupon policies are very strict, and she was giving me attitude. I looked her straight in the eye and took a deep sigh, “This is my last day, I’m supposed to leave in five minutes” without smiling. She immediately became quiet and was way more cooperative.

One Step At A Time

I worked for a one-hour-photo at a CVS-style store. We would take overflow at our register if the lines got too long. A lady comes up with a cart full of stuff and a large fistful of coupons. Whatever, I ring her up and process the coupons. The total is something over 100 dollars, something like $122.35. She gets mad, saying I messed up big time—but she was the one who messed up,because she tried messing with ME.

After a little back and forth, I void the whole transaction and start again. After every item, “This cat food rang at .89 is that okay?” After every coupon, “You can see $1.00 came off Ma’am, is that correct?” This must have taken 15 minutes. At the end, “as you can see the total is $122.35”. She was furious but couldn’t say anything. It was glorious. I am 37 now, have a child, and 1-hour photos don’t exist, but I still think of my triumph.

Tell It Like It Is

I stopped to get gas today, and while talking with the cashier, I mentioned that she was probably tired of people yelling at her about the price of gas—but since she is the one standing there, she probably gets it a lot. She said that every day, someone complains to her like she can do something about it. A guy then came in and demanded "Why the heck is gas $3.76 a gallon?”

Without missing a beat, she said, "Because it went down 10 cents this morning". He just looked at her, paid, and left.

I Can Help With That

person holding black handled scissorsPhoto by Tá Focando on Unsplash

I used to work at a video store, and after a while, I got desensitized to people throwing little hissy fits about late fees. One day, a gentleman tried to rent a movie and I had to let him know he had accumulated some late fees on his account. Cue the standard rant about having returned them on time, blah blah blah, "...and I'm just going to cut up my membership card when I get home!!" I reached under the counter, grabbed a pair of scissors, held them out to him, and said "Well, you can do that here if you like". He gave me a venomous look and left the store in a huff. And it felt so good.

Do You Know What You’re Doing?

I’ve worked in a hardware store since I was 16. When I was about 17, I cut two keys for a guy. I’d been cutting keys for a while, and so had the hang of it. I was told that he returned when I wasn’t there, told my colleagues that the keys didn’t work, shouted that I was a stupid little girl that didn’t know what she was doing, I shouldn’t be allowed to cut keys, etc.

My colleague was already mad but looked at the keys to see what the problem was. He had been trying the keys in the wrong locks. As in key A in lock B and key B in lock A. He left with his tail between his legs and has not returned since. As a young blonde girl, I regularly get stuff like this. Proving them that I am far more clued up than they think I am always satisfying, though.

Well, Go Ahead!

I used to work at CVS. One day, I had a customer who was incessantly complaining about how the toothpaste he was buying was a lot cheaper at Walmart. He even pulled out his phone and showed me a chart that compared the prices of it at different stores. I didn't get worked up or anything really. Instead, I retaliated in the best way that I know how—I just acted very uninterested and said, "Go to Walmart, then".

Make Me

a man sitting in the back of a yellow truckPhoto by Documerica on Unsplash

I remember I was probably 17 or 18 working at Whataburger in Austin. I worked early and late hours. I remember this one time very specifically, the customer had come to the window, and I politely asked him to move forward. There was one car behind him, and I was just trying to give the guy his drinks. The customer then yelled at me, telling me the only way he would move is if I made him move, and told me I wasn’t anybody to tell him what to do.

During his yelling, he pointed at me, and I just slammed the window shut in his face. My managers came to me asking what was wrong, and I explained and begged them to handle the customer. I then realized, when I turned to hand him his food, that the window was cracked, and he heard everything. He threatened me, saying if I ever slammed the window in his face again, he’d “beat me up”. This dude was like 30, by the way.

Before he could finish his sentence, I slammed the window again and ran outside. He drove off and threw his food out the window. I didn’t get fired, I just got moved to cook.

This Is Bananas

I was a grocery store cashier in high school. I had a dad and his toddler son come through my lane one afternoon. They racked up $302 in groceries and only had a $300 EBT voucher, so the dad proceeds to tell his son that “this man says you can’t take the bananas with you today”. Annoyed, I decided this is a point I’m not budging on at 16 and tell him that’s not the case and to not lie to his son, that perhaps another item could be left behind so the son could have these bananas.

The man explodes at me, and my manager tells me I must apologize to the man or be fired. Instead, I walked out and never looked back.

Big Red Flag

When I was in high school, I worked at Sears. If you were under 18, the name on your name tag was highlighted in red. It was around Christmas and some dudes, both at least 30 years old, started hitting on me. I politely told them no and tried to walk away. One grabbed my arm, so I said loud enough for people to hear, “If you don’t get your hands off of me right now, I’m calling security”.

Then they said they’ll tell my manager I was being “an absolute jerk”, and I said “Yeah, and I’ll tell security you’re being a pedophile. I’m 16, back off!” They ran out of the store before security could get there.

You’re Kinda Slow

blue shopping cart on street during daytimePhoto by Eduardo Soares on Unsplash

I’m a manager at a grocery store. I was checking people out because we were busy, and a dude wearing a Dallas Cowboys jersey comes through my line. He didn’t have a whole lot, but he paid with both dollar bills and loose change, so it took a bit to count it because I don’t trust people. He gets angry, asks me if I’m stupid or something, and insists he could have done better. From that point on, it was no more "Mister Nice Guy" from me.

He had been quiet though, because there were other people in line. So, I loudly asked him if he talks to everyone like that or just people that can’t fight back. He got quiet and left.

Conversion Conundrums

I worked at the Manchester, NH airport, at a car rental place. Twice a week, we'd have someone come in with a reservation for a car in England. I had one guy demand that we honor the reservation's pound cost, not the dollar cost. I said I'd honor the equivalent, pulled up a dollar-to-pound chart, and converted on the spot. It would've cost him $20/day more than just taking our no-reservation price.

Another customer with the same issue said "I thought the dollar sign looked funny, but I figured that was just a website bug or something. Never seen a dollar sign look like that".

That Thing From High School

I worked at a drugstore in high school. I had a German couple check out at my register, and they were incredibly rude. They were complaining in German about the customers behind them in line, using vulgar language and whatnot. I wasn't moving fast enough for their liking, and the woman called me some curse words in German, obviously not aware that that was the impractical language that I took in high school.

When I finished their order, I stared her in the eye and said thank you in her native tongue, and they both looked shocked and embarrassed. It felt good, man.

Your Job, Not Mine

person holding white rabbit figurinePhoto by Bianca Ackermann on Unsplash

I worked for Dollar Tree, and we sold a lot of porcelain figurines that we would have to wrap up in several layers of wrapping paper so they wouldn't break. After a year or so working there, I became accustomed to the majority of customers wanting to do the wrapping themselves because it made them feel assured that if they did the wrapping, their product wouldn't break.

I would casually and kindly ask the customer beforehand what their preference was, and it never became a big deal until one guy who drove a brand new Porsche flipped out over the simple question and told me he was too good to do that kind of thing and that I am the one with the job so I should be doing it for him. The words were harsher, but it was so long ago that I can't remember them that well.

I finally got fed up. I wrapped them and told him to get out. The manager and customers didn't say anything and went back to their business.

Lost And Found

I’m a cart pusher at a large grocery store in the US. I was sweeping the sidewalk by the entrance to the store when I see an old woman drive her car onto the sidewalk by the door, very close to me and other people walking. She then opened her window and threw a bunch of trash out of it. I walked over, swept it up into the dustpan, put it in her window, emptied it, and said, "Excuse me, ma'am, you dropped this". She had such a confused look on her face!

Less Than Perfect

I used to work as a croupier at clubs, and during a shift change, my colleague accidentally made a wrong payment to a paying customer. Gamblers being what they are, the complaints that ensued were awkward. and no matter how much my colleague said he was sorry, the customer kept on complaining. Finally, I just had to take over the situation. I gave the customer a piece of my mind: "Sir, people make mistakes, we are not robots. If you want to play with machines, there are slot machines in the other bar".

He shut up and the other players seemed relieved.

The Mess At The Pool

white and blue swimming poolPhoto by Nick Shandra on Unsplash

I worked as a lifeguard for my first "real" job. One night, at the indoor water park, a child came up to me. He asked me very quickly where the bathroom was, I pointed him in the right direction and he quickly said, "No, I need one closer!" I swore in my head as he pooped himself in front of me, all of it running down his leg. I radioed him into first aid, and we took him in and paged his parents.

Eventually, his dad came in, and we chit-chatted about his son, no big deal. It happens more often than you think. His dad told us to change and clean him, me and my manager refused. The dad was furious and yelled why not. We told him he was not our son. That shut him up.

Going On And On

I used to work in the main office of a large chain of furniture stores in the UK. I worked in the evenings, phoning customers to let them know their furniture was in and arrange a delivery date. One night I phoned and asked for Mr. or Mrs. McSomethingOrOther. The guy on the phone starts ranting to me about people phoning up his elderly parents trying to sell things.

He went on and on and on and wouldn't let me get a word in edgewise. I think he may have even used the toilet while he was ranting at me. When he finally wound down, I said "Are you finished now sir? I'm phoning to arrange a delivery date for your parents' new 3-piece suite". Yup, that shut him up completely.

Fix My Order!

I work at McDonald’s, and one morning this older guy who’s a regular at the place and was known to give the workers a hard time was trying to order breakfast. He said he wanted eight extra sauces with his food. I told him that it will cost extra because it’s store policy and he got a bit agitated; he then tried ordering coffee, and he kept on confusing me saying he wanted this amount of condiments inside and this amount outside, and other special requests for his coffee.

I also couldn’t really hear him the whole time, so I just punch in everything on the register that I think he was trying to tell me, and when I finally repeat his order, he had a look of sheer anger on his face, raised his voice, and told me I have his whole order wrong. I told him I can change it no problem, but he just proceeded to yell names at me, telling me I didn’t know how to do my job, and said “Forget you, I’ll go with the other cashier”.

By now he had caused a scene, and everyone was staring at me. It was truly awkward, and I was angry at the guy because I just tried to help him with his order, and soon after when he got his food he seemed like he had calmed down and tried to shake my hand and say sorry, but I slapped his hand away, shrugged and told him something like “nah bro, you gave me a hard time, try doing something like that again, and I’ll tell everyone to not give you service ever again”

He didn’t say a word and just left.

The Express Lane

person holding green leaf vegetablePhoto by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Man came to my express line with a basket full of groceries, when you’re only supposed to have one to fifteen. I asked him to count his items because I’m sorry, this is an express line... He responded with “That’s okay. You can count them”. I was a fast cashier. People have better places to be than my grocery line...I could run up to 25 to 30 items a minute with 100% accuracy. No way was I gonna let this smug jerk get away with his antics.

You better believe I went as slow as possible to run up this guy's order. I took three to five seconds per item, as he got progressively redder and redder... I finished the order with “It’s unfortunate how many people you’ve held up in the line sir. Have a fantastic day”. He called me names and stormed off. I apologized to every customer in the line for the wait and got them out in record time.

It was a small victory, but it was my victory. Every other customer wore nothing but a smile on their face for me at that glorious moment.

I Know I’m Right

Working at a bank's customer service center, a customer called in insisting he was shorted 200.00 dollars cash. Our department took calls like this very seriously, so I sided with the man who was certain a teller had pocketed it. He had his deposit ticket, which showed the amount, and when I looked at the amount deposited. It was a $200.00 difference.

Our bank scans all incoming and outgoing paperwork and found that he was reading the wrong amount, despite my questioning him from the get-go that we were looking at the same numbers on the same forms. He got stern and he got mad, saying his check was for $XXX.XX dollars and we didn't give it to him, we were taking it. I pulled up the check, pulled up the tickets, and explained what was what.

Faced with the evidence and my acting like a non-jerk he took it all in and said: "I know I'm right; I know she stole my money, but you know what... I don't want to get anyone in trouble, I'll let it slide". and hung up.

Help-Desk Horror

Many years ago, I worked in a call center as a technical supervisor for a major PC vendor. When you asked for a supervisor, I was one of the people you got. One night, I was transferred a call from a customer that was having an issue where his PC would not boot, and he did not want to open his case to see if a card had come loose or to reseat any components. This was part of standard over-the-phone troubleshooting.

He argues for a while that his warranty covered a technician coming to his house to fix the problem. I explained it did... Once we diagnosed the issue and that would require looking inside the PC. He again stated he couldn’t because he did not have a screwdriver. After going back and forth for a while, he demanded that I show him where in his warranty book it said he needed to have a screwdriver.

I opened up a copy of his warranty on my PC and searched for the section that explained our troubleshooting policy and said, "Sir please turn to page 32 in your warranty guide. Are you there? Great. Please look at paragraph two line three. There, it states that you need to follow all the suggestions of the phone-based help desk before a technician can be dispatched". He quickly responded, "That doesn't say anything about a screwdriver!" I responded, "Sir, I suggest you get a screwdriver".

A Data Disturbance

man in red sweater holding gold iphone 6Photo by Nimi Diffa on Unsplash

I work for a cellular company, and one day, a guy comes in with his child complaining the service is shut down. I call in and am informed their bill is 20,000 dollars due to a month of constant data usage on a smartphone with no data package. I ask about this and turns out the family put the 17-year-old on the account with full access to avoid having to go into stores when he needed a new phone.

The kid was a jerk that broke cheap pay and talk ones constantly. Well one day, he bought the smartphone and put it on. He was warned that any data usage would be charged $30 per MB of usage so he should never use it. He denies having been told this and denies he was using the data. The father is yelling at me, saying his son never lies.

I grab the phone, open the browser, and under history, it shows he'd surfed right up until thirty minutes before coming to the store. I show the father, and he completely explodes at his son. End of the story, we knocked off 18 thousand dollars, and he's probably still paying a two-thousand-dollar bill.

My Undercover Boss

I was working in food service at a cash register. A customer came up and placed an order, so I rang it up, but she wasn't happy with how much it cost. She threw us off guard with her reaction—she started whining and being just awful. My co-worker came up and stood next to me, looked over what I did, and just kind of stood there polishing a counter. She squawked, "Get me your manager!" I say, "Ok sure, but ma'am, this is the correct price".

The co-worker standing next to me is the manager. He looks at the woman and goes "Yup” and continues polishing the counter. "buh...wha...uh...ok fine!" shouts the woman. She walks away. The two of us cracked up laughing.

A Sudden Snap

When I was 15, I worked as a secretary for a local doctor. This one guy comes into the clinic and tries to go inside the doctor's office out of his turn. I step in and tell him that he's next in turn. The guy waits by the door for about 10 more minutes, while mumbling curses to himself and side-eyeing me. I just sit there, look at him, wait for the door to open, go inside, and tell the doctor that that guy just stood there and cursed at me for 10 minutes.

The doctor says ok, and when they go in, I closed the door behind me and went to my desk. A minute later I hear shouts from inside. A few minutes go by, and the fragile, old, nice, neighborhood doctor is screaming like I couldn't even imagine. The door opens, and the guy leaves. The doctor comes out and tells me with his gentle voice, "I told him this is unacceptable behavior, and that he is no longer welcome here". He turns back to his office and never speaks about it again.

Do You Even English?

white and brown labeled boxesPhoto by Eduardo Soares on Unsplash

This guy came in and was buying a two-liter bottle of soda. As I'm ringing him up, he asks for a bag. I say, “okay dokie”, and continue to finish the part of the transaction I was currently working on. He asks for a bag again, I figure he didn't hear me the first time, so I say it again, a little bit louder, but continue to finish the transaction first.

When he asks for a bag the third time, I straight up say okay while looking at him right in the face. He asks me what okay dokie means and if I speak English. Being that I'm like, seventh generation American, and white as freshly fallen snow I'm genuinely surprised that this dude has never heard the phrase okie dokie and proceed to tell him that yes, I speak English and that “Okie dokie” is slang.

At that point, he starts throwing coins to pay for this bottle of soda off the counter directly at me and I just snap. I void the transaction, remove his soda from my register, and tell him that I'm refusing him service. The dude pushes back a little bit but surprisingly doesn't demand my manager and eventually just leaves.

Tension At The Theater

It was Christmas at the movie theater. Doesn't matter how many people you have scheduled for Christmas. Doesn't matter if everyone shows up. You're still shorthanded. Usually, one person would work the counter and the other would get the food ready. So, you've got two people per register. I'm one of the more senior people working that day outside of management, most of whom are currently helping to clean the theaters so we can admit the huge crowds in time.

This meant that when something came up in the back that threatened to delay the making of popcorn, I had to go take care of it. A co-worker tapped me on the shoulder, and informed me of the issue, I went to go to the back and some guy standing in line yelled out "Don't leave the register! It's slow enough as it is and I'm hungry!"

I'm told that I turned red, and started shaking from anger as I yelled at this guy about how I understood much better than him what it's like to be hungry since I hadn't eaten all day so I could serve him and everyone else, about how I understood what it takes to make this place run efficiently better than he does since I'd been doing it for two years, and how if he wanted me to come back as quickly as possible, then I had to be allowed to do my job. If he didn't want me to do my job, then he could either leave or take my place.

I don't remember that, though. I just remember the crowd going quiet, me punching the coconut oil box open so they could hook it up, and then a manager making me take a 30-minute break. My hand hurt for a couple of days, but it was fine

It’s All The Same?

I worked in customer service for a company called Future Shop, which is Canada's equivalent and daughter company to Best Buy. I remember one time some guy making a huge fuss about his future shop credit card bill, which was through HSBC Bank at the time, and because of that, I couldn't help him in-store. This man got so mad at me that he threatened to never shop at Future Shop again, and that he was going to Best Buy.

I giggled inside, then told him that we were the same company. He didn't believe me and told me to prove it, so I grabbed my pay stub and showed him the "Best Buy Canada" envelope. He stormed out of the store pretty fast.

Learning The ABCs

brown wooden table with black rolling chairsPhoto by Lucía Garó on Unsplash

When I worked in the media section, I spent most of the day stocking CDs/DVDs and finding them for customers. So, this lady comes over to me, getting in my face about how ridiculous it is that we don't alphabetize our selection. A little confused, I assure her that everything is in alphabetical order and offer to find it for her.

At this point, I wasn't planning on rubbing it in, but then she mumbles something under her breath about how dumb we are and wishes me luck. I sang the alphabet song while gesturing to the appropriate letters until I got to what she was looking for, in exactly the place it was supposed to be. Her only response was "Oh..."

A Horrifying Encounter

When I was like sixteen, I worked at a local haunted house, which, mind you, was a sweet gig, and would have been hard to get if the manager wasn't my good friend. Anyway, one night we were going through the usual show, and I played an "Escaped Experiment" character, kind of like Igor, all short and hunchbacked, whose job it was to jump out and scare the tourists as soon as they walked through the entrance. I even had a blood pack in my mouth.

One day, this group of typical dudes walk in and they're making noise and ruining the atmosphere, but nonetheless, I jump out and give the typical scream. Their response was totally appalling—one of those guys kicks me right in my face.

I stumble back a bit and manage to retain character. Meanwhile, this jerk is still laughing his dumb face off and kicking at me. Remembering that I have a blood pack in my mouth, I grab his leg, put it in my mouth, and bite just hard enough to break the blood pack. Fake blood goes everywhere. He starts crying because he thinks he's seriously bleeding, and is all, "Dude, what the heck?!"

My manager, who was also the tour guide of the attraction, quickly replied, "Oh, don't worry, he's had all his shots".

Extra, Extra, Extra

I used to work in a deli restaurant, and this lady came in and rudely ordered her food. I told her that everything should come out all right, and that I will double check for her to make sure her order would be correct. She insisted on getting LOTS of honey mustard on her sandwich. I typed in extra honey mustard on the ticket. Sure enough, her order came out and there seemed to be plenty of honey mustard there.

But when I deliver it, she complains to me about not having the extra about mustard I promised her and told me to "get a to more honey mustard" for her. I go to the back of the store, get an entire new gallon jug of honey mustard, and plop it on her table. Her friends were laughing, and she was steaming mad. She complained to the manager, who thought it was hilarious and laughed in her face.

Trouble With Tires

a garage filled with lots of tires and tiresPhoto by Vinicius "amnx" Amano on Unsplash

I was super busy trying to run the shop and the counter; I had already sold 14 sets of tires, not including the odd individual tires, and this older guy came up and demanded I go get him a tire. He told me the size, and I told him it'd have to be ordered. We don't carry 13" tires on hand. He blew up and started calling me insults I hadn’t heard since grade school.

I told him to leave my shop, but he got in my face and raised his hand to hit me. That’s when I lost it, dragged the old man off the property, and called the authorities on him. The next day, this dude comes back in with glasses and a hat and asks politely to order the tire. I called the authorities again and have him taken in for trespassing.

Do The Shoes Fit?

When I was in high school, I worked at a shoe store. We did this "buy one get one half off" sale all the time. The way it works is you buy a more expensive pair, and you get the cheaper of the two half-off, otherwise, we'd lose money. So, this woman comes in and buys two pair of kids' shoes. She looks at the receipt and thinks that 50 dollars is too much for her smaller child.

So, she returns them. She then proceeds to flip out because the difference for the other pair came out of the refund. I called the manager, and he came up, and she said, "he's a foster kid. He's not worth a 50-dollar pair of shoes, stop trying to rob me and give me my money". The manager refunded her the entire bill, took both pairs of shoes, and walked off.

We all gave her the silent treatment until she left, angrily. I feel bad for both the children and her husband who were just standing there quietly.

Man lying on edge of tennis court OR man falling off edge of structure
Martin Sanchez/Usplash

Life can be viewed as a series of moments in quick succession each influenced by a preceding event.

At any given time, things can go awry, but somehow things manage to fall in line much like an elaborate maze of dominos.

But one misplaced domino can cause the whole rigorous set-up to come to an unsatisfying end–unless the faulty piece is corrected just in time before the domino in front of it squarely taps it.

If you've been lucky, a last-minute decision in your life has been properly adjusted to avoid catastrophe.

Curious to hear about close-call situations from strangers online, Redditor True_Egg_5685e_Egg_5685 asked:

"What split second decision have you made in your life, that if you hadn't made it you would have died?"

Life can be treacherous in the fast lane.

Unwarranted Lane Change

"Driving 80 miles per hour on a lonely interstate in the middle of the night. Decided to change lanes for no reason, and ended up missing a crumpled car in the middle of the lane I just left. It looked like a professionally crushed car that had fallen off of a truck. No light lenses or reflectors."

– Upper-Job5130

Unseen Obstacle

"I was driving through Dallas on I-20 at like 2am once and had a similar experience. No other cars, just me doing 80mph, and I just absentmindedly changed from the middle to the right lane for no real reason. Suddenly there's a blacked out sedan just parked in the middle lane, no lights on and no people in sight. I thought I was hallucinating, it happened so fast."

– glum_hedgehog

Why Coffee Is Essential

"Fell asleep at the wheel, woke up and corrected my steering without panicking."

"Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving. Never again !"

– Nielas_Aran_76

T"his happened to me when I was in my late teens. I was burning both ends of the stick and was driving home from working and falling asleep. I remember it so clearly. Nodding off, waking and being thankful I didn't crash and then nodding right back off again. I'm amazed I didn't kill myself. I did eventually hit a divider and popped two tires. I must've been going very fast. I don't know why I'm not dead."

– boringcranberry

You never know when a pedestrian is where they shouldn't be. Or when a car is traveling where it shouldn't.

Wayward Wanderer

"I'm from Northern Ireland and my brother and I were coming home from a night out, he was the designated driver. We were doing 70mph on the motorway and he moved into the fast lane and missed a guy walking on the motorway, dressed in black, by about a foot. So scary 😰."

– garymason74

Reckless Driver

"Grabbing a middle schooler's backpack as she was about to cross without looking and staying on the sidewalk instead of crossing the road. (I was in high school at the time)"

"The reason?"

"The red car that had almost ran me over a few weeks before was barrelling down the street at high speed."

"Car zooms past at the moment the kid and myself would have been in the middle of the road."

"Same driver. I recognized the shade of blonde hair."

– MerryMelody-Symphony

These people survived a terrorist attack.

At The Time Of Signing

"Was in a bombing. Knelt down to sign something when the detonation happened. Glass shards were a hair away from killing me. The person who gave me the paper to sign technically saved me, they’re fine too."

– PinkBedazzledLeotard

"Story time! My grandfathers family lived in Halifax at the time. My great uncle George was a newborn. They had him in his pram facing the window. For some reason my aunt went in and turned his pram around so it wasn't facing the window anymore, then she left the room. As she was leaving the room, the windows blew in. If she hadn't turned the pram he would have been shredded by glass."

– Lexifer31

These individuals continue counting their blessings.

Retrieving A Forgotten Item

"I went to ride my bike and almost forgot my helmet, I honestly debated grabbing it since I was only planning on doing a few miles; last minute I decided I might as well have it and then half a mile out I got hit by a car. Helmet was busted as hell but other than a concussion I was fine"

– SunfireElfAmaya

Narrow Missssssss

"Nowhere near as extreme as some of these, but I used to go for walks in a nature park right behind my neighborhood, usually with headphones. On one such walk, I happened to look down to see the foot I was currently stepping with was about 6 inches from coming down on a diamondback rattlesnake. It was arched back, ready to strike, rattle going, but I couldn't hear it over my music. Leapt back immediately and walked around it without issue, but holy crap, it gets my heart going just thinking about it."

– pownij

Life-Saving Maneuver

"I was caught in a bar brawl. Tumbled to the bottom of a crowd and was pressed to the floor when some psycho was on my back choking me. Couldn't move and couldn't breathe. I thought that was it. I was gonna die on the floor of a New Jersey nightclub. Suddenly I remembered a move my wrestling coach taught us to break grips. I found his thumb, folded it like a fist and squeezed as hard as I could. It cracked like a stick. I could hear him scream in my ear and he hopped off. I pushed up and swung my way out. I was choked so hard that both of my eyes were full blood red, no whites and I cracked a molar. That was a close one and who knows what would have happened if I didn't recall that one random move or if I never wrestled to begin with. Scary."

– Ghostface5000

A moment that still sends shivers down my spine was when I nearly avoided a head-on collision with an 18-wheeler that had been zig-zagging between the different sides of a busy street.

The presumably drunk driver was speeding and towards me and I had to decide whether to swerve into the parked cars on the street or steer the other way and risk driving into cars careening toward me.

I decided for the former and turned the steering wheel towards the parked cars, just as the truck clipped the back corner of my Nissan Maxima.

My vehicle spun 180, but thankfully, I managed to slam onto the curb where no cars were parked.

The semi-kept going. It was a hit-and-run. And I count my blessings that I live to tell about the fact that I didn't steer my wheel towards the left which would've had me on a collision course, head-on, into the semi.

The Worst Exes Ever
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

These Redditors came together to share the stories of the worst people they've ever dated, and they're enough to make you wanna pick up a few cats, lock the doors, and never fall for another person again.

The Flat Food Diet

brass door handle on blue wooden doorPhoto by Edmund Lou on Unsplash

I had a buddy whose ex, upon breaking up, raced him back to his house, got there first, and then proceeded to lock herself in his room for several days. I don't even think she talked much while there. She would just sneak out at nighttime to use the bathroom. Buddy's kind-hearted, Christian parents fed her by sliding flat foods like bologna and pancakes under the door.

Playing The Victim

I was pulled off a work trip that she and I volunteered for together. It's one of several regular events throughout the year and this, in particular, was a not-so-fun trip so we figured volunteering would put us in good standing to be picked for a better one coming up. The timing could not have been worse. Completely by coincidence, we broke up the evening before my dad called me from back home saying my grandmother had a heart attack.

It had happened a couple of days prior and she might not pull through. I get pulled off, make arrangements for emergency travel, etc. The day I got the news was rough. Bad break up, then right after, granny might not make it another week. I kept to myself at work, and when she asked about it I told her, like I told our other coworkers, that I didn't want to talk about it.

I told her on my lunch break that me being pulled off the bad trip was not due to the breakup since I'm sure it looked that way. After the shift, I met her at her place and she immediately made this my fault. She said I was abandoning her, how could I be so selfish, everything she could think of. Then I told her my grandmother was probably going to die.

Her reaction was chilling. Her attitude didn't change in the slightest. She kept the same position, acting like I was doing this TO her. Like it was my fault she had to go on the work trip. My grandmother passed a half hour I started driving to the airport. And my ex never apologized for her behavior.

Gaslighting 101

Back when we were dating, my ex constantly lied to me about girls he was talking to even harmless stuff. He once lied to me and told me he wasn’t talking to anyone on Snapchat since he’d gotten a new one. He handed me the phone to let me add myself to his new account and a whole stack of conversations with girls come up.

He attempted to hide them from me (his chat screen was empty and deleted but when you clicked the search bar all the conversations came up), then wouldn’t let me open any of them and I jumped to the conclusion of him cheating. Because if the conversations with the girls were harmless, why lie about them?

It turns out he wasn’t with these girls but convinced our mutual friends that I was crazy and invasive when I asked to know what they were speaking about since he tried to hide them from me. I spoke to the girls and he wasn’t flirting with any of them. But then I discovered the dark truth. I find out a month later that the entire time he’d been dating me (six months only), he had a long-term girlfriend.

It honestly ended up being worse than I originally imagined!

He Went Berserk

woman sitting on floor and leaning on couch using laptopPhoto by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

My ex-boyfriend just absolutely lost it when I had enough and ended things. He took my dog when he went back to work, told my parents I was suicidal, so he had to know where I was, and when I tried staying at either of my parents' places, my vehicle would get vandalized. He threatened to take me to the authorities because he had someone do something to his house and claimed it HAD to be me.

Meanwhile, I was at the bar on the night in question. He blackmailed me for my dog, threatening that he would have one of his friends off her, or that he was going to release her in traffic, and if she got hit, it would be my fault. But it got even more insane. My work had to create a plan where the building would go on lockdown should he show up as he was threatening them too. The final straw was when my brother left his phone out, and my ex was calling it non-stop.

I picked up and lost it. I found a place to rent and told nobody where it was, not even family.

Hall Monitor

My ex planted a dog camera facing my bed before leaving. It took me a week to realize she had put it there. She also rented the apartment directly beside mine and would monitor who was coming in and out of my place. She would then text my friends to see if we were “doing anything.” They could see her perched on her window, watching who was approaching while they were walking up to my apartment.

Locked Out

So when my ex started to get considerably more clingy and obsessive she would lose her mind at me when I would hang out with my best friend—who happened to be a chick. That definitely had something to do with it. Long story short, I told her that that was ridiculous and then it escalated into a fight, with the end result of me telling her I wanted some space to myself for the next few days so I can think straight.

In retaliation, she went and asked my brother for his phone, as he went to the same school. She then put a passcode lock on it and told him that she'll give him the passcode when he can get me to talk to her. Obviously, I thought this was extremely immature and unnecessary. She should've never gotten my family involved. Just way over the line.

I ended up just asking her to give me the passcode because the entire situation was outlandish. She seemed pretty sheepish when she gave me the passcode, so I assumed that she knew what she did was uncalled for.

Putting The Cart Before The Horse

white horse on forestPhoto by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

So my ex-husband (we'll call him A) left me for another woman (B) a few years ago. B was an apprentice ("squire") with a very well-known jousting company with a Renaissance festival. Apparently, A and B went to a horse breeder/trainer (C) who specializes in jousting horses and bought a jousting-trained pedigree Andalusian stallion with a showy white coat.

Because B was associated with such a prestigious jousting company and A is a real smooth talker, they somehow convinced C to sell the horse on a payment plan rather than full payment up front. C would retain the breeding papers until the horse would be paid off, naturally. Cue the pandemic. A and B stopped making payments on the horse. C began to worry.

C did not have their contact information except for a phone number they refused to answer, and couldn't read B's handwriting well enough to google her name. More time passed. C began to really panic about the horse's welfare. C began trying to google based on anything she knew about A and B. She turned up A's old address, across the country: my address.

It happens to be on the same block as her friend T's house, and she knows T because T boards the horses for our local Renaissance festival. The jousting circuit is small, and everybody knows everybody. C called T and filled her in, T sent me a DM me and was like "Girl, is this your ex”? Crazy times. I passed along the contact info I had from the divorce paperwork to C to try to help her repo her horse.

That's how I learned horse repo is a thing! More time passed. A and B were dodging creditors like it's a new Olympic sport. C was going crazy trying to serve them papers to sue to get her horse back. C was wondering whether flying to my city to try to serve A papers here when he came to pick up the last of his possessions would work.

Then, C made a disturbing discovery. She started getting contacted by angry mare owners with new baby foals without lineage papers. It seems A and B had started selling stud services on their stolen horse, promising breeding papers they didn't have, taking cash up front, and when the mare owners demanded bloodline papers for the foals, just sent them to C.

And THAT'S how I learned that black market horse breeding scandals are a thing! The horse is back home with C. A and B stopped paying board and the barn owner managed to track C down to rehome him. It was just in time, he is expected to make a full recovery with lots of love and care and work.

My Ex Was On A Power Trip

My ex came to my apartment while my now-husband was there. He rang the doorbell and admitted that he'd been watching us through the glass in the front door. He then proceeded to threaten to take out my husband after the confrontation. He also tried to get hired at our place of work. He got so far as the interview before I found out and called human resources to let them know he would be a threat to us. Somehow, that’s not the weirdest part.

A couple of weeks later, my mail went missing, and it turned out he had taken it and…paid my electric bill.

Fools Rush In

When I was 18, I met a Lebanese man; he was handsome, a doctor, and 13 years my senior. I met him on my college campus one morning at a coffee shop and ended up having a long conversation with him about the Middle East and his experience working in the US. Eventually, I had to leave and he invited me to have breakfast again with him the next morning so we could continue our conversation.

Me, thinking he was just being friendly, and wanting to seem friendly too, accepted. The next morning, I meet up with him for breakfast. The mood has totally changed. He pulls out the chair for me, kisses my hand, and starts talking about going to Lebanon to meet his grandparents. He asks if he can pay my bills. He tries to give me a diamond necklace.

I noped the heck out of there the second breakfast was over. For weeks after that he wouldn't stop calling me, leaving messages when I wouldn't pick up. At first, they were all giddy and excited talking about plans for "us." I still never called him back. Then he started leaving messages about how I had sucked the light out of his life. But that’s not the creepiest part.

His friends would start calling, too, talking about how awesome his libido was, how I was breaking his heart, as though one "date" was enough for anyone to feel that way. It made my head spin, but at that point I was too afraid to try and respond even to ask them to stop. Eventually, the calls petered out but, man, it was weird...

A Toy Story

red and white bear plush toyPhoto by Mahdi Bafande on Unsplash

So get this... I dated a guy in my late high school years who was very reserved and very handsome. The first seven or eight months were unreal, I was so happy, and things were going great. Soon thereafter, he and I decided to tell each other our deepest darkest secrets. (10/10 do not recommend) He told me that when he was young, he used to cut holes in his stuffed animals and would have intimate relations with them. I had no idea what to think, but I honestly didn't feel like it was the worst thing someone could do, so I just let it reside in the back of my mind.

For unrelated reasons things got a little rocky in the months after. He became so jealous and overprotective. He would come up to my work and watch me for hours, he would drive me to and from wherever I needed no matter what, he would also get so upset when I spent any time away from him. When I did get the opportunity to hang out with friends, he would always buy me flowers or pillow pets and leave them on my car almost as if he was letting me know he was watching. This just got worse over the next 3 months and I figured it was probably time to end things.

I decided I was just going to drive over and just let him know things weren't working out, simple enough, right? Wrong. When he figured out what I was doing, he completely lost it. Punched holes in everything, broke whatever was in sight, and had a full-on episode. When I got to the house he was waiting for me in his truck which was completely ripped apart, might I add. I figured it probably wasn't the best idea to get out of the car, so I turned around to drive away and he busted out his truck window and then followed dangerously close to my car. After about a half hour, he finally let off and called me claiming he wrecked his truck. I went back to get him, but I'll skip the details on the endless crazy things he pulled that night. Needless to say, it was over.

A few months after the break up I decided it was probably a good time to get all of the things I had left at his house. It was mostly clothes, but I always left the stuffed animals he got me there just because. Long story short, I walked into his closet (The walls were still completely demolished from his episode) and I found some of the pillow pets he had bought throughout the relationship. I grabbed my favorite one (a grey elephant named Charlotte) and on the underside she was just covered in you-know-what. By covered I mean graciously glazed from multiple endeavors.

Side note: It is so weird typing this out. It never seemed as crazy as it actually is.

And that's all I have to say about that.

Imposter Syndrome

Back when my ex and I were still freshly in a relationship almost three years ago now, this random Instagram account popped up. I won’t share the name of the IG because it was my brother’s name. The account messaged me saying “Hey __! It’s me. I’m back”. I was shocked, happy, and filled with so much hope. My brother and best friend were back after years of being gone.

We talked every day and it was the best part of my life. I really missed him. I told my ex about it too. Most of the conversations we had I shared back with him. My brother was such an important person in my life and all I wanted to do was share his love with the other people in my life. But I started to notice things were a bit off.

My brother had a childhood nickname for me. And he only ever called me this name. He never called me by my birth name. But, when we spoke through this Instagram account, he rarely called me that nickname. He also wouldn’t exactly remember how core memories between us happened. Like the firework story or the comics we wrote.

It almost felt like one of those stories where a catfish is pretending to be your loved one over the phone. The person behind this account didn’t ever ask anything of me. No money, no help, nothing. And I know it was kinda naive of me to believe this was him. No pictures, no proof, just a “hey __! It’s me” type of message. To be fair, the name he called me in the original message was my childhood nickname.

At the time, I had only recently started talking about my brother again. When I still lived at home it was hard to and for the longest time, I didn’t understand why my mom was so against talking about him. I understand now sadly. Besides, I was miserable without him. My brother was my best friend. My hero. I just wanted to see him again.

After noticing so many weird things with this account I kinda got fed up. I asked if this was really my brother—and the response I got was devastating. It said: “I’m so sorry, he loves you so much”. And then the account was deleted. My heart broke. My ex helped me through that feeling of losing my brother again. But now I had hope he was alive and out there somewhere.

Fast forward a few years, my ex sits me down and says we need to talk. I say okay and he informs me that he had hired a private investigator (behind my back) to look for my brother. He just wanted to reunite us. We had a surprise vacation planned and were set to leave in three days, so the first thing I thought was “Oh my god, you found my brother. That’s where we’re going”! So as I was jumping around excited to see him again, he brought me back down to earth—and what he told me was utterly shattering.

He said: “I’m sorry, but there won’t be a reunion in this life…” he then proceeded to read my brother’s death certificate off to me. My brother had taken his own life in 2016. But the nightmare didn’t end there. Right after our vacation, he broke up with me. Months have passed since the breakup and I’m so much better off. This ex managed to lock me in a hospital for grieving the loss of my brother, hurt my cat, and was extremely mentally abusive.

A few days ago I was sitting in my kitchen with my best friend and we were talking about my brother’s upcoming funeral. She asked me when he passed since I never really talked about that. I told her 2016. She said that isn’t possible because she got texts from the Instagram account a few years back. She even showed me the messages.

I looked at them and the messages consisted of him telling her to stay out of my life. To back off, etc. I reached out to some people I had lost contact with around the time that IG account popped up and they all had similar messages from him. They knew how much he meant to me, so they just backed off. We connected the dots.

I looked back on some other shady stuff and made a horrifying realization. My ex was behind the account. He faked being my brother for what? He ruined my friendships with good people in my life. And I still don’t know why nor will I ever. I never want to see his face again. I should also mention that I never wanted to hire a PI and he knew this.

I always had a feeling he was gone but I wanted to hold onto false hope. It was comforting. I mean, we were so close growing up and yet once I was an adult he never found a way to reach out to me and I tried finding him myself at one point. But there was no social media of his. So I just imagined he was living this happy life. And my ex took that from me.

He went behind my back knowing I didn’t want a PI and hired one anyways. After I found out about my brother I spiraled and barely ate, barely slept, I called off work more times than I can count. I’m surprised they didn’t fire me. I 100% believe he was behind the account because when we broke up he was accusing me of making fake profiles all over to stalk him.

Usually I only see people accuse others of crazy stuff like that if they’re guilty of said thing. I also found it odd that whenever I’d talk to my “brother” about things between me and my ex he would just say “that sucks” or blame me for our issues or say I should just forgive him. My brother also wasn’t aggressive ever. He was protective but he would never ever message someone telling them to just stay away nor would he ever tell me to just apologize to keep the peace or make it all my fault.

He was my biggest supporter. And whenever I’d tell him (my brother) about these things, my ex would start to act weird and cold. And yes, even though my brother passed in 2016 I plan to hold a funeral for him this year. I was never at his original funeral nor do I know if he actually got one. I swear I could write a whole book about the horrible things my ex did to me and the way he lived.

It was disgusting and yes, I 100% plan on taking action for what he did to my cat and to my mental state. It’s so hard for me to trust people now and I get scared telling people stories of my brother. I miss him so much and I have to work today but all I wanna do is lay in bed and cry.

You’ve Got Mail

When my ex found out I was going to break up with her, she had her mail delivered to my house. Then she wouldn’t leave when I did break up with her. I called the authorities, and since she received mail at my home, they said it was officially her residence as well. Faced with the impossible, I came up with a plan. I had to call my landlord and have him evict me to get her to leave.

Once she left, he rescinded the eviction notice, and I moved back in.

Three’s Company

man holding a smartphone near the windowPhoto by Thom Holmes on Unsplash

Once my ex found out I had a new girlfriend, she tried to do a three-way with her friend and me in order to break us up. I declined. Then, she got the same friend to hook up with my buddy and convince him to invite my ex to a party at his house that I was going to. I went into the bathroom, and when I opened the door, my blood ran cold.

She was standing there. It freaked me out. I said, “Hi, excuse me, I’m about to leave this house.” She then pushed me as hard as she could back into the bathroom and came in and locked the door. At that point, I started yelling for help. My buddy and a few others came and unlocked the door, pulled her out, and I was able to get out of the bathroom.

I started walking upstairs to leave—but my nightmare wasn’t over yet. She flew out the door and ran to my truck. She stayed there while I was standing there in disbelief. At that point, we had been broken up for months. I walked back inside, and one of her friends approached me and told me if I told her that I never wanted to see or talk to my ex again, she would let me leave. I complied.

I told her that it was over, and I never wanted anything to do with my ex again. I waited for a few and peeked outside. I saw the coast was clear and started heading to my truck. I heard a scream and looked over, and my ex was running full speed at me, screaming. Out of nowhere, another lady full-on tackled my ex and told her to get out of there.

As I drove away, I got a call from the party saying she locked herself in the bathroom, threatening to off herself. I called her parents and kept driving. This all happened after she had: called me hundreds of times from a dozen numbers which I blocked and requested she doesn’t call, egged my new girlfriend's car, asked a very desperate friend of mine to prom hoping to get in our group, and followed me to and from work.

Two years later, I had a new phone number and was in college. I got a call and answered it—it was her. I have no idea how she found me. She asked if I went to the local university, to which I replied yes. I did not actually go there; I went to a state college. She enrolled in that university. I only heard from her one more time and hoped that was the end of it.

If I Can’t Have You…

I spent four years spoiling this girl, and almost never getting emotional or physical love back from her, only to have her break up with me over something very trivial. I spent a year begging and pleading and bending over backwards to have her take me back, but her response was essentially, "I don't think you're good enough". I, finally, with the help of some great friends and family, moved on and found a great girl to start dating. That’s when my ex snapped.

She went nuts, and started showing up at 3 AM at my apartment, calling hundreds of times, the whole nine yards. She got physical and verbal with me, but I finally got her to understand I was done being manipulated. But the surprises weren’t done yet. Then, a week after she tearfully told me, "I'll never love anyone again," she and my (former) best friend post on Facebook that they're together.

Paranoia, Paranoia, Everybody’s Coming To Get Me

I dated a guy from the ages of 16 to 21 who was awful to me. I haven't seen or spoken to him in 14 years. He left me high and dry for bills and rent so he could move across the country. He said he was tired of me "ruining" his life. After he left, I managed to pull myself out of the bad situation I was in. I had no family or friends to turn to because he isolated me from them.

I also had to drop out of high school to support both of us. Fast forward 14 years and I'm now happily married to a wonderful man and a few years away from finishing my doctorate. But unfortunately, I’ve still had to deal with my ex. Over the years, this guy has reached out to be friends again and once even apologized to me. I've ignored him.

The first time he contacted me after the breakup, I told him I would never speak to him again and to leave me alone. Instead, he resorted to unspeakable behavior. He ended up stalking me online and at work for a year after that. After the stalking, I've occasionally checked in on his social media out of safety concerns for myself. What I've come to learn is that he never got his life together.

In fact, things have gotten much worse for him. When we were dating, he had some odd behaviors that I didn't recognize as red flags because I was mentally and emotionally beaten down. He was convinced that I would poison his food. He would often make me switch plates numerous times with him before he would eat. If he felt "weird" after, he would become aggressive.

He also had this preoccupation with his IQ. He would constantly take online IQ tests then make me take them, just to tell me he was smarter than me and most other people. I now recognize these behaviors as early symptoms of paranoia and narcissism. These behaviors have now turned into what I believe is a persecutory delusional disorder.

He is convinced that a cartel is after him and dosing his food and smokes. He believes his mom was kidnapped and replaced with a body double. He wrote her off after she refused to take a DNA test to satisfy him. He also thinks he has a "doppelganger" in a cartel who is trying to take his identity. He just spent the last year or so homeless trying to run away from this supposed cartel and prove that they exist. The creepiest part?

My name has popped up from time to time on his social media posts. I've chalked that up to him wanting to relive a part of his life before it took a steep downturn. According to his posts, he sees what happened in our relationship as much different than it was (i.e., he never wanted to break up, only tried to help me, etc.). None of that is true.

Seeing my name in his posts used to bother me, but I remind myself that he isn't well and to just keep an eye out. Well, then he took it up a notch. Last night, I saw something in one of his posts that I didn't expect, my husband's name. I met my husband 6-7 years after him. They never met. He has now created this narrative that my husband is his look-alike in the cartel and that I'm the one behind everything happening to him.

He thinks that the only reason I'm with my husband is because he looks like him. They look nothing alike. They're also different ethnicities. To me, this sounds further delusional and even narcissistic. Honestly, I'm a bit disturbed now. Thankfully, I moved out-of-state a few years ago, so I feel safer than I would back in my home state.

Clear Cut Revenge

man cutting brown tree during daytimePhoto by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

This happened to my neighbors. They were a couple who went through a divorce and she got the house in the settlement. However, it was only the house and the immediate house lot. Not the surrounding land, as that went to the husband. That’s how he got his revenge on her. The first thing he did was sell all the lumber off the rest of the land.

She went from living in a nice forest to living on clearcut land. But he wasn't done yet! Once the trees were gone he sold off the topsoil, then the gravel under that. By the time he was done her house was on a hill overlooking a barren landscape reminiscent of the lunar surface. This was years ago, and the place is still hideous.

TrueEnt

She Made Her Bed, Now She Has To Lie In It

She took all my shower stuff while I was at work. Curtain, rod, all that stuff...and the toilet bowl scrubber. She took it all, so when I came home and I said, “Okay, not letting her take more of my stuff that's actually important”! So, I changed the locks. While at work that night, she calls and says she needs in the apartment to get her things.

I tell her nah, not without me there, I don't want you taking my stuff. She says she'll call the authorities, and I tell her to go ahead. A couple of officers show up at my work and ask what's going on. I show them my lease with her name not on it, and they say okay, we'll have her when she comes back tomorrow, call us when she shows up.

She comes the next day, and tells me she's taking my bed, worth $700. I tell her no, she didn't pay for it, and I have my credit statement printed ready to show the officers. She tries to argue that she's taking the bed. The officer says “Look, you're not taking it, if you think you deserve it, take him to court”. She then tries arguing with the guy.

The officer says “Did you not hear me right? Take him to court”! Well, I didn't hear back from her about it.

Beaten To The Punch

Years ago I dated a girl. She would be the absolute ruin of my life. When we first started dating in my senior year, I had never dated anyone before, first love, first partner, first true connection—or so I thought. I didn’t heed the warnings from my then-friends, or even the warning signs I noticed. She’d flirt with guys in front of me and she’d use the physical side of our relationship as a bargaining chip.

She’d mock me—and I am not exaggerating when I say this—she’d yell at me if I said ANYTHING, if I didn’t immediately apologize right after. I had to train not to apologize after every sentence after we split. I’m not acting like I’m some saint, either. I’ve had anger issues all my life, I inherited it from my father, so I’d snap and say some pretty terrible things, some I still regret.

But one day, I had enough. I can’t remember what it was, or when, but it was over. We’d “split” before, but this felt final. Or so I thought. Two days later, she shows up on my doorstep, “wants her things” she says. So I invite her in. She sits on my couch in my room and tells me she slept with my old wrestling partner, the guy who taught me everything.

I was furious, but it created a new link. I became the crazy ex. Fake Facebooks, went to her house once. I regret it all. I was depressed, and had extreme anxiety. Not an excuse, but it’s what happened. I’m better now, I promise. She had built my entire self-worth on what she thought of me, that I couldn’t NOT have her approval. It was terrible.

Cut to a year later. I’m dating a new girl. She’s my world. I get a new job. That’s when I get the absolute worst surprise. My boss is my ex’s dad. She isn’t close to him so hopefully I can just avoid her. One day my girlfriend tells me my ex texted her. I ask what she sent, and it was fake texts of me and ex. Obviously fake. Made minutes before the screenshot, same day, etc.

Sadly, my girlfriend at the time doesn’t believe me—and does the unthinkable. She goes to a birthday party, gets hammered, and makes out with another guy. I end up losing my job. Later that month my best friend suggests getting a restraining order against my ex due to the text fiasco. I agree. Well, I wasn’t the only one with that idea. Guess who’s there? My ex.

She’s acting like I’m gonna attack her right there, but we just wait for our papers, and leave. I get served a week or so later, and a law advice place tells me to just drop my order. So I do. Long story short, I lose the order. She gets a year restraining order on me, but the judge is nice enough to keep it off my record. Nice.

It’s been over a year now, and my last girlfriend and I never recovered, I could never find another job, and I’m still afraid of seeing her again. My life was ruined by her, but I can never talk about it, because it’s old news.

Scream Queen

a woman with her mouth open and hands in front of her facePhoto by Simran Sood on Unsplash

My girlfriend at the time was staying over. I had been at work late the night before, so I wanted to sleep in. She tried to wake me. It didn't work, so I fell back asleep. I was in a deep sleep. After an unknown amount of time, she apparently lost her patience. She put her mouth directly against my ear and screamed as loud as she could.

It was a high-pitched horror movie scream. The pain was immediate. Fifteen years later, if I’m in a loud place, my left ear still buzzes like I have a wasp in it. It sounds precisely like a blown-out speaker. And that was only one of the crazy things she did.

Finally Dumped

I was having doubts about my boyfriend of two months and was discussing it over texts with a guy-friend of mine. My boyfriend went through my phone and accused me of sleeping with my friend. He went berserk. He made a massive production out of packing up his stuff and leaving. After leaving, he stood on my porch for a few moments, collecting his thoughts.

He had changed his mind and begged to be let back in. I refused, and he sobbed and scratched at my door for the next two hours. Days later, he demanded to have my microwave, which he had given me as a surprise gift when I was out of town. To avoid confrontation, I left it on my porch for him and watched him take it and toss it in my dumpster.

Against my better judgment, I sent him a message about what he did. I mean, not only was that immature, but it's hugely wasteful. If he was going to take it back, he could at least use it or give it away. In response, he drove back over, fished it out of the trash, and left it on my porch. After I disinfected it, I put it back in my kitchen.

Then I got ANOTHER message, this time demanding the microwave back on behalf of his "friend." Again, I left it on the porch. Later that day, I watched him throw it in the dumpster—again. This time, I went to Walmart and just bought a new microwave.

Hunk Of Burning Love

So, in short, I broke up with my ex for a few reasons: I needed to focus on school and he was a distraction. We were not compatible in the long run. And, perhaps most importantly, he clearly loved me and I didn't feel like I could ever actually love him. I did like him but just didn't fall in love. So I broke up with him in the nicest way possible.

I tried to do it gently because he didn't anything wrong during the relationship, but he went kind of crazy. He wouldn't leave me alone and couldn't understand why I didn't think we were a good match. He wanted to work through our differences but I said I didn't want to change my core beliefs and my life goals. Then he said he would change, but I didn't entertain that idea as I feel no one should change core values for someone else.

He also couldn't accept that I just didn't love him. Mind you I never said “I love you” and repeatedly said we were not serious—we didn't date very long—but I guess he grew very attached. Anyway, a few months pass and he texts me asking if we could talk and see why we broke up. At this point, I tell him fine and I think he's just getting closure. I really should have known better.

A few hours later, he sent me a terrifying message: “Just so you know, I would set myself on fire for you”. It's safe to say I didn't have a chat with him after that.

Interior Decoration As Revenge

minimalist photography of open doorPhoto by Phil on Unsplash

There was a couple who lived across the street from my family when I was younger. She was friends with my mom, and he helped my dad install our pool. Turns out they were having some issues, and while she was out of town for work, he gutted their entire kitchen. I mean, walls, appliances, ceiling...everything. So she comes back, finds it, they argue and she moves out and moves in with her mom.

Through court dealings, she ends up back in the house, but he's going to get the house eventually. I was only 13 or so, so I don't remember specifics. Just days before he's supposed to move back in, my parents help her move all of the furniture that she bought before they got married, which was literally everything besides the mattress and one recliner.

That's all he was left with when he moved back in. But it didn’t end there. After he moved back in and the divorce was final, he went through a phase where he had another woman living with him, but also had a boyfriend who would frequently visit. One of the last times we saw any of them was around midnight one night. The neighbor, the boyfriend, and an apparent third party had some sort of loud, drunken lovers' quarrel.

I don't know what happened inside the house after we called 9-1-1, but all three went with the authorities after being tased.

Party For One

Years ago, in the late 90s, I discovered my girlfriend's awful secret. I'd already been living with her for a year when I found out she'd been sleeping with her boss. The timing could not have been worse. It was the week of our Super Bowl party. We both had plenty of guests coming. We’d been planning it for over a month. I spent all my money buying every type of drink that we thought anyone would want.

We were young upcoming professionals. She was just under 21. Not able to buy the hard stuff. She pulled me aside and broke up with me on the Friday before that weekend. I saw it coming. She left to go to the beach with her boss and told me to move on Super Bowl weekend. So…I came up with a plan. I called my people and moved the party.

I took all of my furniture—everything but one TV, bed, one glass, and one chair. That was it! No dishes. Nothing. The place was bare! It took me many hockey bags to move the drinks, but we drank for weeks with it! I heard she had her own party—with everyone showing up to one bottle, one glass, one chair, and nothing else.

Overselling The Story

I broke up with my ex about six months ago. I broke up with him because he lied all the time to the point where he couldn’t even tell the truth about his drive home from work. He even lied to be about being discharged from the army. That was the last straw. I met a new guy after we broke up and we got together about a month after I broke up with my ex.

My ex was thoroughly convinced I'd cheated on him and started spreading rumors about how I cheated on him and our two-year relationship was a lie. About three months later, my ex texts me about how he’s so lonely and he hasn’t met anyone etc., he started talking about how he’s going to school and doing a lot better in life. I congratulated him and went on my way.

About five months after the break-up he texted me again—and what he said was shocking. He told me how he has a kid. A kid? Yes, a kid, crazy. I asked who he knocked up and he said no one. He’s going to be a step dad. I was very confused. He goes on to tell me he’s engaged. It’s just five months after we broke up. I thought he was on something but I was like congrats, whatever.

He proceeded to randomly text me about how happy he was with this girl. However he never had her on any of his social media and none of our mutual friends knew about her. Flash forward to six months later, and his “fiancé” texts me. Why, I have no idea, but I was guessing to see if I was a “threat” of some sort. So I played along and played nice.

She was telling me about how her baby daddy is crazy and she was on probation because of him, he hacked all of her online accounts, and then how my ex was the best thing that came into her life. I responded acting like I cared and went on my way with my day. A few days later a few mutual friends and my ex hung out. He called them after having a few drinks asking if they wanted to go to Target.

They were in town for a couple days and wanted to see him so they said sure. That’s when things took a disturbing turn. My ex was all over my female friend, groping her and saying how he wanted to have a threesome. In the end he ended up getting punched in Target by my male friend and they took him home. But he forgot his phone in the back seat of their car.

He called from his “fiancés” phone, and the contact wasn’t even saved in his phone, which we all thought was a little weird. My friends dropped him phone off outside the building at his truck and asked me to text his “fiancé” to tell her the phone was there. So I did. She asked what happened and I started telling her what my friends said.

While explaining I said something along the lines of “I would be mad if my fiancé was grabbing on another girl”. She responded with “Fiancé? Do you see a ring on this finger”? I sent her the screen shots of him saying they were engaged. The reaction said it all. They both blocked me. She didn’t even know that she was “engaged” to him!

I come to find out he’s not in school and still has the same minimum wage job he had when we were together. Biggest Liar Ever!

His Prank Put Me In Prison

man standing under the bridgePhoto by Brennan Burling on Unsplash

My ex-friend and I had gone to a party, and I drank more than I should have. He was the designated driver. He dropped me off “just over a block” from my house. When I got out of the back of the car, I didn’t recognize anything. I reached for my phone but realized that I didn’t have it. I walked the block looking for a street I knew but couldn’t find one. I then picked a direction to walk in to search for a major street.

Apparently, he had thought it would be funny to drop me off in the wrong neighborhood instead of at my house, and lifted my cell phone so that I couldn’t call for help. His plan was to let me wander around lost for about 10 minutes, then find me to actually take me home. He never found me. After a few hours of walking around lost, I had sobered up and was thirsty.

I had found a larger street, but it was around 2 AM at that point, and everything was deserted, so I couldn’t ask anyone for help. Eventually, I saw a cruiser patrolling and flagged them down for assistance. I couldn’t believe what they told me. They told me that I was over ten miles away from my house and in a very unsafe neighborhood. They didn’t believe my story.

After some discussion, they offered to give me a ride home but asked me to put my hands behind my back while they searched me. I complied, and they immediately cuffed me and told me that they were arresting me for public intoxication. I didn’t have any money at the time, so I didn’t want to call anyone to post bail for me.

I kept getting told that they would release me as soon as I was processed because I was already sober. There were no windows in the holding cell, no clock, and they never dimmed the light, so I and the others had no concept of time. I was fed twice and had access to water and a toilet. I managed to fall asleep a few times, but I kept waking up shivering.

When I was finally released, it was 9 AM, a whole day after being taken in. My roommate had reported me missing and had been informed that I was in custody. I was able to call my roommate from a payphone and get him to pick me up. A few weeks later, I found out that the charges were dropped, so thankfully, I didn’t have to pay a fine or take classes, but I stopped hanging out with my friend who pranked me after that.

She Was MIA Upstairs

I was in the forces at the time. My ex called the base and told them I was passing her secrets, which they took VERY seriously. I was pulled out of formation and cuffed, with no idea what was happening. It took two weeks before they believed me and released me back to my unit. She then called my mom and told her I was dead, but the army wasn’t telling her.

She also called my landlord and told him the same so that they could release my apartment. It was a nightmare. By then, the landlord had actually started boxing up all my stuff to sell-off. We had only dated for maybe three months. I couldn’t believe it. She was seriously crazy!

My Ex Tried To Catfish Me!

My ex attempted to catfish me by using a picture she manually snapped from a magazine as her profile picture. I could see the seam down the center of the photo. I knew it was her because she had a feeble grasp of grammar, and she would make specific mistakes that no one made. When we "met" on the site, before I realized it was her, I asked why she was single.

She stated that her ex passed on two years prior. Considering she pulled a gun on me in a prior instance…that may well have ended up being true.

God Complex

person's hand holding book pagePhoto by Rod Long on Unsplash

I wanted to share my "Crazy Ex" story now that the initial shock is over and I'm happily in a long-term relationship. All of this took place from when I was 19-23, and my current age is 26. My crazy ex is four years older, so that would make him 24-28 during the events of this story. Additionally, when we started dating, I was attending a small Christian Bible College, identifying as a Mennonite, Protestant Christian.

I attended this college for three semesters and then transferred to a large university, where I obtained a degree in my current field. During my time at Bible School I was actively questioning my faith, and by the time I was out of Bible School for a year I identified as an agnostic—which was also a couple of months after my breakup with my ex.

I would say the break-up contributed to the deconversion, but was not the entire reason and I'm sure would've happened anyways if I had never had this relationship. I also want to point out that I don't want anybody to think this story is an attack on Christians. It is about my crazy ex. We met at a fitness class, I was 19 and had never been in a relationship before.

After admiring him from afar for a while, I mustered up the courage and displayed interest in him—he asked me out and it did not take long for us to begin dating. He was inexperienced himself and had never had a girlfriend. In retrospect, I really did not know him that well. I think I was just young and excited and wanted to have a boyfriend.

At first it was great. I always had somebody to hang out with, he had an off-campus house, we would go on walks, play videos games, watch movies, and other fitness things like kickboxing and running. I later introduced him to my friend group at the time and we had a weekly board game night at his house. Honestly there are a lot of great memories.

During our walks we often talked about what being a couple meant, and what roles men and women should have in a relationship. During this time, I learned something shocking about him. My ex wanted to save his first kiss for the wedding altar. Even though I was religious at the time I thought this was extreme, but I tried to respect that.

Additionally my ex told me that he believed in a biblical marriage, which he described as that the man is the leader and since he loves his wife he will take everything into account. I remember aggressively agreeing to that statement and being so happy that I had found myself a man that could provide. However, he soon proved that his actions were not the same as his words.

We quickly became physical and lost our virginities to one another. He would make me feel guilty about it (and I already felt SO GUILTY on my own, for I had wanted to wait until marriage) and blamed me, even though we both consented to it. Also his idea of being a leader was to boss me around without questioning, not let me pay for anything to the point where he would cancel outings.

He’d also not pay the internet bill at his house and ask for money from his parents, all while bragging about how much he worked and how much his job payed him. He pushed marriage on me constantly, even though I shared with him many times I did not want to marry at age 20. Also I would ask him to do Bible studies and pray with me, but he wouldn't let me instigate it, as it was "the man's job to be spiritual leader" and I wasn't allowed to.

Also, I began to notice some other red flags. All of his friendships were people that I had introduced him to, he admitted to thinking he was smarter than me because he was older and a man. We had many other issues, and once I moved away to start university the problems were only exacerbated from being long distance. A mutual friend of ours described him as having a superiority complex—which I think is accurate.

After 13 months, I finally realized that I deserved better and I dumped him. He pleaded with me to wait until the semester was over so he could take me on a trip and "prove that he was worthy". I said no and we broke up for good. About two months later, I was working a summer job in a National Park and was very lonely and messaged him to meet up—which he declined. Thanks heavens, I was so stupid.

After that, all communication stopped. It was around this time that I stepped away from my Christian life and began to experiment with partying, boys, other belief systems, etc. My ex and I stayed friends on Facebook. A year after we broke up, my crazy ex messages me out of the blue asking to meet up. I say no. A two months (in the month of July) later I post on Facebook that I am in a new relationship. I get a surprising response.

My ex sends me a message congratulating me. I think this is really weird and I ignore him. A month later (August), he posts on Facebook that he is in a new relationship. I was surprised as he had literally been messaging me a month prior but whatever. His new girlfriend is a social media over-sharer and tagged my ex in everything so I was able to get all the details.

By October, they are engaged, co-own a pet, and have a wedding date set for December. So in the span of less than six months my ex (presumably anyways) met somebody and married them. In early November, I get a Facebook message from his fiancée. She is young, a college freshman. Her message was seriously infuriating. She explained who she was, and then asked me if we had ever gone all the way.

Her reasoning was, "There are rumors that you guys did it and people think I am a harlot because of it”. I was pretty upset to get this message for numerous reasons. It's pretty bold to ask a stranger if they had ever did it with their current fiancé, also it showed that my ex was still terrible and lying to his fiancé like he did to me.

Also in what universe are you a sinner because your fiancé may or may not have done it with a former partner?! I responded that my personal life was none of her business and that if she wanted to know she could ask my ex. Her response was "But he won't tell me”! This made me feel very bad for her—for I was in her exact situation two years prior.

One week before their December wedding, my ex messages me, with a simple "Hey". I immediately know something is up, and I ask him what he wants. He proceeds to apologize for taking my virginity, breaking up with me unexpectedly, and then never talking to me again. At this point I was mad. I admit the conversation we had was not my finest moment, but I had enough of this guy.

I reminded him that I broke up with him, that losing my virginity is a dated social construct and that I don't regret losing it to him, because at the time I thought I loved him. He told me that he is actively in a relationship with Jesus and that Jesus was pointing out his wrongs to him. I told my ex that I didn't care about his relationship with Jesus.

He then responds, "Well if you don't feel bad doing it, we should just do it again”! This of course, made me angry, and I responded, "Does this have anything to do with your fiancée messaging me”?! and he responds, “I actually broke up with her yesterday—she has a personality disorder that I did not know about”. This made me rage even more.

What kind of jerk breaks up with his fiancé a week before their wedding and blames it on her mental health? I responded to him that he needs to respect women because he clearly did not respect her and that he did not respect me during our relationship. He told me he prayed to God every day to help him treat women with respect.

I responded that he was a disgusting human being because he has to pray to a god to give women respect, not because he sees them as individual human beings. He agreed with me that he was despicable but that he had found redemption through Christ and that he would pray for me every day until the end. I told him I don't care if he wastes his time praying for me.

After this he deleted me off of social media, and we have not talked since. However, I would still periodically creep his socials, and I was still Facebook friends with some of his family members. At this point, I found his behavior entertaining and he descended further and further into a couch theologian with fundamentalist, narrow-minded views. But it didn’t end there.

After his called-off wedding in December, he announced on Facebook the following August that he was engaged, AGAIN! Thrilled that there was more drama to be had, I went into instant creeping mode. His new fiancée was older than him, a widowed housewife with two young children, whom she homeschools.

I immediately question the union—here is a woman I assume is desperate, widowed with no formal education or skills to support her family. I fear for her, but can only hope for the best. They get married, and shortly after the marriage announce a pregnancy. The child is born, a girl and all of my ex's photos on Facebook are of him with his baby.

I fear for what kind of stepfather he is to the other children. I was creeping and discovered that his wife wrote blog posts about her previous late husband's journey with cancer, and eventual passing. She continued on with the blog posts after he was gone, and there were several posts outlining her faith and courtship with my ex.

I was impressed with how articulate and intelligent this woman appeared through her blog posts and how somebody like her could end up with such a dud like my ex. One thing the blog clarified for me was that she and my ex matched in January—approx. six weeks after our Facebook fight and a month after his supposed wedding with this other girl.

They got married the following August. The blog post also confirmed my suspicions about her being desperate—having to sell her old house, move in with her mom, and the struggles she had being a young widow. One of the blog posts was written by my ex—and he mostly talked about theology and how her theology matched his, etc.

Unless my ex has drastically changed, which I doubt, I think it is all lies and was just the "honeymoon stage" like we had in our relationship. That’s not even the craziest part. To make matters more interesting, I reconnected into an old friend who also knew my ex back from the Bible School days. She informed me that my ex (in between our relationship and his first engagement) fell for a dating scam and ended up sending money to a fake girlfriend that lived overseas.

She said it got so bad that he had to sell his motorbike and his house (which now that she mentioned it, I remembered that he had abruptly sold his house to his sister and sold his bike). His current wife hasn't posted on the blog in over a year. Both their socials have gone silent, either from little use or increased privacy settings.

She Was Cooking With Gas

We agreed that she'd collect her stuff from "our" place when we broke, without me being there. I arrived later that evening to make a seriously disturbing discovery. She’d left two gas valves opened—so I guess I'm lucky I didn't light a smoke. I considered it, but I didn’t call the authorities. How would I prove it anyway?

At that point, I was just glad she was out of there and out of my life. And still am. So I decided to ignore it and not sound like a lunatic wailing at an officer about a murderous girlfriend. Believe me, at this point we'd been through enough.

The Houseguest

She "broke" into my house every day for about a month while I was at work. Showered, cooked food, watched TV, and then left before I got home. I came home early one day and she was sitting on the couch watching TV. She very matter-of-factly said, "Oh I didn't think you'd be home at this time". I asked how she got in. When we were dating I had lent her my keys once.

She got one cut for herself without me knowing. Of course, after arguing we…made up. Being with a crazy person can be fun. But that was the second last time ever.

Bad Timing

man in black and white sweater sitting on chairPhoto by kevin turcios on Unsplash

My husband and I were high school sweethearts. After four kids and 16 years of marriage, he cheated on me. However, he didn’t tell me for over a year. But when he did choose to tell me, it was the worst timing ever. He told me about his affair when I was in the middle of chemo for cancer. I was bald, sick, and had only one breast.

My mom had passed on ten days earlier, and it was my birthday. Never saw that one coming. We divorced.

I Dodged That One

My ex-fiancée ended our eight-year relationship and called off our wedding five months before with a typed note that was less than 300 words long. She said she kept not being excited about getting married, so she decided she didn’t want to get married anymore. A week or two later, I found out she cheated on me with a mutual friend.

I called her, and she told me she “had to do it” and “please stop fixating on it.” I ended up confronting the guy and ruined her prospects with him. Nine months later, she married different guy 20 years her senior, pregnant with his child, on what would have been our anniversary. She recorded the ceremony, so I got to see it circulating. Her vows were all about how the new guy was better than me. I thought to myself, “I successfully dodged that one.”

Makin’ Believe

So, three years ago, I made the dire mistake of going on Tinder. I matched with this guy from Canada, and we both were in med school. He was 33 years old. He was the one initiating conversation irregularly—like once every 3-4 weeks. He used kissing emojis and I sometimes answered with kissing emojis as you know, I thought that kissing emojis are not that important, I use them all the time and in majority of times it means nothing to me.

We went on like three dates in a period of two years and we kissed on the lips once. Now, some time ago, I got into a wonderful relationship. I posted a question about something on my Reddit account and I mentioned my boyfriend. I never could’ve predicted the chaos this would create. This nutjob stalked all my social networks and found the article and started to bombard me with questions.

He was asking me why I cheated on him on him and so on. I was like what? Didn't know we were in relationship but okay, sorry if I hurt you! That’s when the fun stuff started to happen. He was following me on Instagram and started to bombard all the guys I followed on to see which one was my boyfriend! Almost a year has passed and he still does it.

He makes a lot of new accounts and tries to "learn the truth". Recently, he started to just send me e-mails where he tells me how he has thought about me for 10,000 hours, how he had to leave medicine because of me. He says that I completely ruined his life. I really couldn't imagine a 33-year-old would use kissing emojis without actual meeting and having physical contact (not counting that one kiss in person).

Even worse, I recently learned he is one of the "Proud Boys”—which, as I understand it is some kind of strange group of males with interesting views. I hate the thought of having hurt anyone, but I am not 100% sure everything he tells me is true. It always feels like he’s trying to get a rise out of me.

T Minus U

brown short coated dog on brown wooden parquet floorPhoto by Kari Shea on Unsplash

It’s kind of messed up, but more hilarious. My ex-wife was still staying in the guest room—we just split and hadn't completed the divorce yet—on a temp basis while she found a new place. I grew tired of her attitude and told her I wanted her and all of her stuff out ASAP. I got home from an 18-hour shift, and when I got home at 6:30 am, I was greeted by a chilling sight.

It was empty. There was a full-on echo in that house. She got it all out of there, I'll tell you that. I had nothing but a stripped mattress on the bedroom floor. She hated the mattress, but bought all of the furniture in there, so she took all that. The funniest part? We had our initials in wood lettering on the wall, and the only thing that was left on any wall in the house was my remaining initials.

She plucked her "T" off the wall. I took a laughing selfie next to it and sent it to her.

Losing Two People With One Breakup

Me and my ex were high school sweethearts, she was my first and I was hers. We had been together for five years and been living together for three years when she broke it off. She waited about four weeks before she started dating my best friend, whom I had known since kindergarten.

Me and my "friend" had always been very close, he talked with me when she broke it up, consoled me, played the good guy while he and she were dating behind my back the whole time. This was a friend I was hanging out with almost daily for my whole life, skyping, playing all the new games together—we even went to the same schools just to be able to study the same things.

I didn’t see it coming and was heartbroken when it ended. She took all of “our” stuff and moved out on the same day. I was left in complete awe and didn’t even manage to put up a fight before she had 90% of everything we owned together. She even took my best friend. He just stopped talking to me after a few weeks and I haven’t heard from any of them for four years now.

I didn’t know that they had been dating so long until a mutual friend told me one year later when they announced their relationship. I guess it isn’t as messed up as many of these posts here, but it left me messed up. I have trust issues and have never been as lonely in my life as I am now. What really sickens me is that she took my best friend.

She could have had everything else, but why my best friend...

Baby Wars

My boyfriend and I have been together for six years, since I was 13. He and his ex dated before that—he was 14 and she was 16. They dated for four months and that was it apart from them talking during our on-again-off-again stuff a few years ago. I am currently pregnant with our first child and it's been hard with family drama and living situations but overall, we’re thrilled.

She's also pregnant at the moment. Her and her current boyfriend were pregnant once before but he was stillborn so this is a big deal for her, which I completely respect. She's done a lot of terrible things over the years but I was genuinely happy for her. However, we’re literally due like a week apart—and it’s driving her off the deep end. She goes so out of her way to out-do anything having to do with pregnancy.

It's petty and stupid but it’s making me crazy. I never really post or talk about my pregnancy I just don't feel the need. She, on the other hand, posts daily which I understand. She's excited and wants to share that. The problem is the few things I have posted have been followed up by her posting nearly the exact same posts or posts that are very clearly directed at me.

We have basically the same friend group so it's a little frustrating that she can't share the spotlight even a little and especially that she's making passive-aggressive cryptic posts when I've done nothing but wish her well and try to be understanding because of the loss she went through. But that’s not the most infuriating part.

On top of that, mutual friends have told me she's still telling people how she's in love with my boyfriend and wants him back which is just uncomfortable given everything going on. I just don't understand how she can be so obsessed with him when they dated for such a short time as children or why she's so determined to undermine my pregnancy when I've hardly ever spoken to her let alone done something to deserve her being hateful towards me.

I mean I get that she wants the spotlight since this is so important to her but it's my first baby and I've had a lot of drama and pain during my pregnancy so I'd like to have a little positivity when it comes to sharing it with friends and family.

Do You Do Voodoo?

man using smartphone white sittingPhoto by Courtney Clayton on Unsplash

I had been with my ex for five years. Last summer we broke up, mostly because of her lies, infidelity and her drinking problem. Still, I tried to be the good guy for her again after the breakup, like visiting so her kids don't take it too hard. About 6-7 months ago, she started to date a friend who wanted her for the last few years. I thought it would get her out of my hair—instead, it set her off.

She sent me tons and tons of hate messages, threats, etc. Then, she said that she was cursing me to an eternity of pain. Never spoke to her again and stayed the heck away. The thing is, even many months later, she still sends me hate messages and all. Yesterday she sent me a picture of an altar in her room with a picture of me, candles and stuff like that.

She just said that I am doomed and that she still curses me. Imagine her boyfriend in all that? She still spends that much energy to try to get to me, for no reason, after breaking my heart. All of that without him knowing, I would guess.

Let’s Split The Bill

I dated this girl, we will call her Candy. I should have known she was a nut job from the get-go but I was young and dumb. When I split with her I started dating the future mother of my daughter—let’s call her Cassie. To say that Candy didn’t take this well would be an understatement. She started telling Cassie to not get to comfortable dating me and that I’m only with her to make her jealous.

She went as far as to tell Cassie that even though he is spending time with you and making you think he loves you, he comes to see me at night and that I text her all the time. After all the reassuring and proving that it was all lies, this chick decided to go off the rail and scratch designs into Cassie's car. But there was something she didn’t think of.

She did it in a Walmart parking lot, and there were cameras so it was all caught on tape. After going through the hassle with security and management, I take Cassie back to her car since she is going home for the day. A few days later, she gets the estimate on what the cost would be for the repair and tells me and asks me to hand it off to the nutjob.

I hand Candy the estimate. She turns to me and says well this wouldn’t have happened if you had just stayed with me instead of going out with her. She then proceeded to tell me, "Look, I’m sorry, and tell Cassie that I’m sorry". I don’t know how she wants to take care of this—so she says I can pay, she can pay, or we can go halfsies on the repair.

She says that’s what I want to do—and her reasoning was totally unhinged. She says, "If I’m being honest with you, you should pay my part since I did this over you". I looked at her shocked and walked away.

She Cleaned Me Out

I had an ex that, after we broke up, came to the house to get her stuff. I wasn't home, but she convinced the landlord, who knew us, to let her in. Big mistake. I had told the property management specifically NOT to let her in. Anyway, I came home, and my house was completely empty except for my dog and an empty fish tank. She took everything that wasn't nailed down.

She took the food from the fridge, cupboards, and pantry. She took the SHOWER CURTAINS, both irons, my furniture, TVs, game systems plus games, and even took the light bulbs out of the light fixtures—and not just the easy-to-access ones. I called the authorities and told them I had been robbed. When they got there, the landlord said he let her in even though her name was not on the lease. The officers told me it was a civil matter, and they couldn't do anything about it.

Uke-idding Me?

man staring at woman near gray concrete wallPhoto by JD Mason on Unsplash

We had been in a heated argument, and she went to another room. I assumed she was just getting some space and cooling off. A moment later, she came running out of the room, screaming and swinging a ukulele at me. We didn't break up then, but eventually did. That incident was the main reason. However, until we parted ways, I could never be calm if she was in another room.

Tattoo You!

He got a tattoo of me on his back then dumped me two weeks later. Two months later, he wanted to get back together, and when I refused, he cut himself in my driveway. I drove him to the hospital and got his blood all over my car. He survived. However, if I had to do it over again, I would have called the EMTs and gotten ready for the date I had that night.

I realize I shouldn't have been alone with someone who was that unstable.

A Not-So-Merry Christmas

I was in a VERY long-term relationship with a lovely lady. What she wanted in life changed over time, and thus we ended up with mutually-exclusive aims for our relationship. Recognizing this, we broke up, in spite of our wanting to be together. We stayed good friends. At the time of this story, I was in the final stages of buying her out of the house we had bought together, but this was taking a while because of banks and solicitors.

I’d been single over a year, and decided to look at online dating. I got pretty much nowhere, since I’m childfree, a nerd/geek, and still very into my rock music in spite of pushing 40 at the time. It’s 4am on the 1st December, and I’ve come home from dancing down at the rock club. While putting a brush through my hair, I’m browsing a dating site.

I happen upon a gorgeous childfree rock chick, who paints herself as a self-sufficient, independent, confident lady. In other words, my dream date! I couldn’t have known just how much this moment was what took my life from okay to a living nightmare. I muster all of my art and craft an intro message to send to her. I fire it off, and go to bed, expecting to never hear back, since she’s so far out of my league, she’s actually playing a different sport.

When I wake up in there’s a message from this lady. She claims that’s the best message any guy has ever sent her on such a site. She asks what the catch is since my profile makes me seem too good to be true. We end up chatting through the site. After a few hours, we move over to Facebook, and chat a lot more on messenger. On the Sunday, we have a video chat, and then more text chat through the day.

More text chat Monday and Tuesday. She’d just moved to my country, where she’d always wanted to live, starting a job in the new year, and was in a hotel for a couple of weeks while she got settled. She’s saved up six months of funds, to make sure she as enough to last to her first paycheque. Respect. Tuesday night, she’s on her own, hungry, but is feeling down that she has to eat alone.

I offer to hang out via vid chat while she eats. Apparently, she finds this incredibly sweet. Wednesday, since I have Friday off, works for plans that have fallen through, and she is also available. I ask for and we arrange for a date that Friday. We chat more, and then more on Thursday. During Thursday’s chats we’re both bricking it.

So I point out that this could be a “mate date” to start with, and I promise to not even try for a kiss. She loves this idea. Friday comes. I drive two hours to see her. I’ve brought freshly made sugary treats for her. She is even more stunning in the flesh. It becomes apparent that while I’m thinking “why would someone this hot & amazing be into me”, she has parallel thoughts.

We then spend several hours hanging around town near her place, going to shops, looking at touristy stuff, having a meal, etc. I have had a brilliant time with her. By the end there are a lot of hugs, and I depart for home. I get home to messages from her, we vid chat more. She’s posting for all to see how she’s had a brilliant time with the best guy ever.

We start chatting & vid-chatting every day. She makes references to me as being things such as her “wish-he-was-my-boyfriend”. She is very sweet towards me. On the Tuesday, she asks for a second date. We arrange Saturday. I end up being ill and we push back to Sunday. Sunday, the weather is going to be terrible, so our plans for our date are not going to work.

I arrange an “indoor picnic” for us, which she loves. She kisses me, and tells me she wants us to be a couple. I’m over the moon. We kiss and hung and chat a lot. During that time, she receives a call. It’s the friend she was going to be staying with over Christmas while between homes for a few days. She cannot stay after all, she’s going to be homeless during Christmas week.

As I was already planning on inviting her up for a few days in that time for my birthday, I offer to let her stay a little longer so she isn’t homeless. She’s thrilled. During our chats in the week, we arrange for her to come down to mine on the Thursday evening. Thursday evening, her journey was unusually quick, and she gets too my house a minute before I get home from work.

She loves my place, and loves the fact that I’ve fixed most of it up myself. She finds it super-comfortable. I cook for her, and she loves my food. I take her to bed that night, what we do in bed I leave up to her. Not giving any details here, but she seemed super-happy, though worried that I’d not had enough fun. I told her that I definitely had no complaints beyond exhaustion.

I have a short work-shift Friday morning, we spend Friday afternoon and evening together. She freaks out a little on Friday night over how I expressed something and my history with my ex. It was a red flag, but I ignored it. I was too into her. But I calm her down, and we end up very close. Saturday, we spend all day and all evening together. It’s a lot of fun no matter what we’re doing.

We verbally express our love for the first time. She explains that her dream guy was [my general physical description] from [my county], ever since she was young (in hindsight, another red flag, but I’d never dealt with a narcissist before). She tells me she’s never actually been with anyone she’s fallen for like this before (again, another red flag I’d not the experience to see at the time). She continues being incredibly sweet to me.

And now we get to Sunday 23rd December. This is the day it all turns around in the most horrifying way. We get up in the morning, spend some time together before some friends turn up for a nerdy game. This game is an annual tradition, and will include my ex, who I’m still fiends with. I’ve been super up-front about this.

I did forget that a mate of mine was turning up a little early to help me with some technical questions for a job application, and she lets him in while I’m in the shower. I apologize and she’s OK. Next to arrive is my ex. Who has her own key, as she still owns half the place, and a load of her stuff is still there. My girlfriend is a little freaked out by this.

My ex and my girlfriend have similar figures & looks (I have a type), and my girlfriend freaks out about this. My friends all head to the kitchen for drinks and snacks on their own, as the house is the local geek-central, and they’re used to doing this. This also freaks my girlfriend out. I try to calm her down, but she just shouts at me to go and play the game with my guests.

I leave her to it. After a while, she calls to me, and I go to check on her. She’s OK, has some questions about the local area, and sends me back to carry on with the game. OK. The game ends. I win. My ex jokes that it’s an early birthday present from them all. My ex and I also exchange (wrapped) Christmas gifts (as I said, still friends) for Christmas day.

My friends leave, and I go through to my girlfriend. She’s stumbling around the place as if she’s been drinking, and is struggling to put her shoes on, but determined to go out for a smoke. I realize I shouldn’t leave her on her own. While she’s getting ready, I make a disturbing discovery. I happen upon four empty sleeves of what turn out to be sleeping pills. Also, a glass that smells of something strong.

I’m worried. I follow her out of the house and she punches me in the torso and screams at me to leave her alone. I’m twice her size, so the punches don’t bother me. I follow her at a distance to make sure she’s safe. Every few hundred meters, she runs back to punch me (getting more serious as time goes on, until I had to block the blows with my arm) and screaming at me to get back together with my ex! And she’s saying I should throw my ex and all her stuff out of my house.

As she storms around the area near my house, I call the emergency services, as I’m worried sick about her. She hears me talking and so that she cannot be found from my description, sits down and removes here shoes and jeans before carrying on. I eventually manage to kite her back to my house, where she strips to her underwear, crawls into the (empty) bath, and starts banging her head against the side.

Thankfully, this is when the paramedics showed up! I gave the packets of sleeping pills over to them, and explained what was happening. They got her out the bath, dressed, and into the ambulance, and I came along with them. As we were dropped off at the hospital, one of the paramedics took me aside. What he said made my blood run cold.

He advised me to get out of the relationship ASAP. Another red flag, but hey, I was in love, how could I walk away? The hospital was quiet and my girlfriend fell asleep. She would occasionally be woken up for vitals, blood tests, etc., and when she came around, she was calling out for me, wanting to hold my hand, etc. After six hours, they thought she was OK, but should be kept in overnight, and I should go home and eat something.

However, my girlfriend just wanted to go back to mine, and was being her usual self, being sweet to me, etc. With my girlfriend having discharged herself, we walked home, since I don’t live far away. On the walk, she became increasingly upset at me, started hitting me again, blaming me for things like her lighter being in her other jeans, or having lost a stone from her ring while punching me.

She keeps insisting I should get back with my ex. She said she was leaving the following day. At this point, I realize I can’t make her happy for whatever reason, and just go with this. It doesn’t help that I’m on the autistic spectrum and don’t react well to this kind of confrontation. On getting home, I try to help her pack her bags, but this just freaks her out.

When she calms a little, she asks how my game went anyway. I think she's coming back around. I tell her I won, but my ex said she let me win as a birthday present. This leads to "She got you a birthday present?!”? and an explosion of fists! It ends up that I’m sat on the floor with her standing over me. She’s gripping my arms with her fingers, nails sinking into my flesh full-pelt, screaming at me that she wants my ex’s address so she can go and take her life, and would then happily get taken in by authorities!

I kite my girlfriend out the house, lock us both out and call 9-1-1. They turn up with an ambulance in tow. I’m told to stay in the other room, even if she shouts for me. There’s one officer and one paramedic in each room. We both give our stories. The paramedics are worried about my obvious injuries, I’m more worried about my girlfriend.

The officers and paramedics elect to take her to the local psychiatric unit for assessment. She’d screaming for me as they take here away. I’m curled-up, sobbing in tears as this breaks my heart. I have a very quick bite to eat and catch a few hours of sleep. I wake up early, Christmas eve, unable to sleep. I message two close friends for want of a shoulder to cry on, and shower and have breakfast.

I’ve given my number to the officer and paramedics, so am expecting to need to go and collect my girlfriend at some point. My two friends both phone me. I fill them in. One advises me that the girlfriend has crossed the line and I need to take a stand on this. The other pops around to give me a hug. Around dinner time, my girlfriend shows up at my door.

I’m expecting she will apologize—but I was so, so wrong. She’d taken too much/little of something. Instead, she’s angry at me. To her, we had a fight, so I called the authorities, and got her thrown in a One-Flew-Over-the-cuckoo’s-Nest-style hospital. She has with her a needle she snagged at the hospital, and she’s going to use it to take her own life in my bed.

I managed to wrest the needle from her. I apologize for upsetting her, but not for anything I’ve done as I still don’t know what I actually did wrong! I text my mum to let her now that I’ll be late or absent for Christmas. My girlfriend asks to text my mum, and I let her. My mum calls me, speaks to my girlfriend, and my mum decides we should just head on down to see them as planned.

My girlfriend and I get ready. She changes into the most gorgeous outfit, but is still angry at me over nothing I’ve done wrong, and has yet to apologize for her behavior, so I say nothing. She hadn’t packed any other clothes, and I check with her, but she tells me to stop complaining and just go. I drive us down to my parents’ place. She’s nice to them but still sniping at me.

My dad takes her out for a walk to see some local Christmas lights, while my mum and I talk. She explains that their plan is to let whatever is in my girlfriend’s system clear tonight, and we can have a nice Christmas the following day. My dad and girlfriend get back. We all settle in front of the TV. My girlfriend complains I’m not even holding her hand or sitting next to her.

I sit with her and she cuddles up to me, before falling asleep. I carry her to bed. She wakes up a little later, undresses, and cuddles up to me in bed. I thought my nightmare might be over—but I was so wrong. The following morning, she’s confused. She doesn’t remember coming to bed or undressing, and thinks I’ve done something to her. She has no change of clothes.

I didn’t even comment on her outfit. She’s still convinced that it’s all my fault. I don’t really love her, I’m just using her for my own kicks. I’m still waiting for her to apologize and/or tell me what I actually did wrong. We fight through the morning, I drag her outside to get her away from my nephews, when my sister comes up. She’s nice to my family, nasty to me.

I arrange to take her back to mine, and deal there. My dad arranges to follow me, and we will then get her into a hotel where she can chill and calm down. On the way home, she keeps threatening to hurt herself. She says that when I return to work, she will do it in my bed. We get back home, I let her into the house, and call the emergency services, as she’s threatening self-harm.

Paramedics show up just after my dad. My girlfriend and I are in with the paramedics while my dad arranges a near-ish hotel. Paramedics talk to her on her own. She admits this was all an act to get me to be sweet to her again. Unfortunately for her, her behavior interacted with my autistic spectrum to shut me down to a coldly logical position.

I point out that she had completely messed with my head, and that if we’re to have a chance, I need a few hours without her. We’ll put her in a hotel for the next two nights. I’ll come and see her tomorrow. We pack all her stuff, and take her to the hotel. It’s a cheap basic place. I have to assure the staff that it’s me she’s upset at, and I’m not staying.

I head back to my house. Her friends have contacted me on Facebook to see what’s happening as she’s upset. I fill them in. That’s when they reveal the dark truth. It turns out she’s pulled this stuff before. They think I’m a stand-up guy for how I handled it. I get back to my parents’ house. Finally get to eat. It’s now about ten at night.

My sister stays up late with me, we talk things through. My sister is awesome. The following morning, I wake up refreshed. I’m off the roller-coaster and know what I need to do. I arrange to meet some friends to back me up, so I can go and break things off with her. I promised her that I’d never lie to her, cheat on her, harm her, hurt her, etc., and she’s done all these things to me.

I realize I may not be able to say this stuff, so I write it all in a letter I can hand over in case. I let her know the exact time and place to meet, then unfriend her on Facebook. My friends meet me an hour before. I explain, and they are horrified. My girlfriend doesn’t show up. I’m relieved, as I have now kept all my promises. I get home, I have a message from my now ex-girlfriend, claiming she wasn’t even at the hotel.

I paste the contents of the letter into Messenger, ask her not to contact me again, and block her on messenger. It’s now the 26th of December. But there’s been some devastating aftermath. For the next few days, I suffered panic attacks and mental exhaustion. My friends have to come and take care of me, and I can’t leave the house on my own.

My many friends rally around to help me rehabilitate over the coming weeks. I’m lucky to have awesome friends and family. It takes five weeks for most of the physical damage to heal. I’m still having physiotherapy on my arm now, over a year later. Physiologically, I’m messed up badly for a couple of months, and a little bit for a good six months after that.

I’m still a little paranoid about relationships at this point. Three months later, I found messages she’d sent after I blocked her. Being mean to me in some very hurtful ways. I don’t know what it is that is wrong with her. I just hope that she can get the help and support she obviously needs, and nobody else has to go through what I did.

Champagne For My Ex, Real Pain For Me

man kneeling in front of womanPhoto by Ben White on Unsplash

On my first night in a new city, I call my mother to tell her I arrived safely. She tells me that the girl I dated when I was 16-17—I was 23 and hadn't heard a peep in five years—called out of the blue looking for me and left her number. Lonely and bored, I rang her up and had a strange catch-up session. She told me she was engaged to a woman and that her life after we broke up was a series of unfortunate events.

We hung up on pleasant terms with no plans to keep in touch. Three days later, I am exiting my building and who is standing there in the rain waiting…yep...her. She had flown 2,500 miles in the middle of the night because she thought we were destined to be together. She told me how she was so torn up about us not being together that she had pulled out all of her hair...down there.

She also brought her fiancé who was as crazy as she was, and was urging my ex to have a baby with me. I calmly tried to tell her that this was insane and that I had no interest in any of this when, out of nowhere, everything goes black. I wake up to chaos as my doorman is holding the fiancé down, waiting for paramedics and law enforcement to arrive.

It turns out she had hit me on the back of the head with a full bottle of champagne they had brought to celebrate with. Restraining orders followed.

The Virgin Birth

She was a smoke show, but absolutely crazy. She would lie about the dumbest things; what she had for breakfast, family members, the car she was "working on". Okay, lady. Anyway, enough was enough, so I decided to call it quits. A few weeks passed, and my youth pastor from my church came to my school—a private Christian college prep school—and pulled me out of class.

He sits me down to have a serious conversation, and I'm so confused. He asks me what I'm going to do about this girl and the baby and I start laughing my head off. He's a cool dude, but he got furious! He knows I'm not a virgin at this point and I've talked to this dude about everything under the sun. The priceless moment was when his face went from pure rage directed at me to pure rage directed at her when I told him we never even did the deed.

Apparently, she had started going to my church in the middle of the week to "seek god" and told him she was pregnant, blah blah blah. So my youth pastor did the only logical thing he could—he caught her red-handed in her lie and told her mommy.

A Moving Obstacle

I had an ex show up at my parents’ house—I was 19 and living with them—and demand we work things out. I asked her to leave and she refused. I grabbed my then 11-year-old brother, put him in my car, and tried to leave. Her reaction was seriously deranged. She blocked the driveway with her body, so I had to drive in the yard.

She then got mad that I left and drove to my mother’s place of employment to talk to her about it! After my mum told her to leave her work, she shows back up at my house and refuses to leave again. I locked up the house and she sat on the porch swing for three hours before my stepdad arrived home from work, tossed gas money at her, and told her to get the heck off his property.

She was crazy.

Discomfort Food

man in gray crew neck long sleeve shirt standing beside woman in black crew neck shirtPhoto by Afif Ramdhasuma on Unsplash

I had been dating this woman for about six months. Generally, things were pretty sweet, but she did have one negative aspect to her nature: she was rather overly fond of the bottle, and she was one of those individuals who, when indulging in her favorite tipple, would instantly flip from being perfectly rational to going crazy once she’d hit a certain level of consumption.

Of course, love being blind, I tolerated this particular foible—until one day she went way too far. Some exposition: it all started when I got a phone call one day from the husband of a very dear friend of mine, a friend who I’d known for over 25 years and who was, for all intents and purposes, my sister. She had just been rushed into hospital with a suspected brain tumor.

I promptly called some mutual friends and asked if I might crash at their place for a few days while I came down to visit her. Arrangements made, I drove down on my bike to London from the West Country that day—this was on a Wednesday in late December. As it happened, I ended up not being allowed to see my friend until the Friday afternoon, as she’d had to undergo major surgery.

I was able to visit her for a few hours but for reasons that are not important to this story, I was obliged to be back home for the Saturday morning. Late Friday afternoon, I drove home. About two-thirds of the way home, I felt my phone go off, so I pulled into a convenient lay-by to check what I knew to be an important message. I replied, and then resumed my journey.

As I pulled into the lay-by in the pitch darkness, I felt the back wheel step out on me: as an experienced biker, I knew this to be down to a patch of diesel, the bête-noir of any biker. The back wheel hit the curb separating the lay-by from the main carriageway and promptly flipped me sideways into the active lane 1. At this juncture, this was more of an annoyance than anything serious.

Every biker I know has encountered diesel, which for us is more slippery than ice. I knew that I had not pulled out of the lay-by in front of any other vehicle—the road behind was straight for at least 1,000 yards, and there were no other vehicles, even in lane two to remotely impede my departure. Bikers are generally very cautious people, and bear in mind that I’m wearing full leathers, Kevlar-armored boots and spine-guard, and a metric ton of reflective hi-vis overalls.

Cursing up a storm at the inconvenience, I go to pick up my bike. That’s when it happens. Jump cut…suddenly I find myself flat on my back with a coterie of ambulance and medical personnel in my face—WTH?? Turns out that, despite all my hi-vis gear, some woman had driven over me at high speed, causing me to crash through her windscreen and ricochet back out again.

I was carted off in the ambulance to the local hospital suffering from two broken legs and a completely wrecked shoulder. Long story short: I spent two months in hospital over Christmas and New Year enduring surgery on one of my legs and my shoulder, during which time my ex visited me many times. Now we get to the dramatic part of the tale.

On the day of my release, still with both legs in plaster and in a wheelchair, I call my ex and tell her that I’m coming home but not to come over until the following day as I just wanted to chill out and get my bearings. Another friend had kindly rearranged the furniture in my house to make it easier to negotiate my way around in my chariot.

She was insistent about coming over so, despite my misgivings, I said fine: come over. As you might imagine, getting home was a joy, despite the encumbrance of the wheelchair. A few hours later, my ex turns up and I can already see that she’s well plastered. Within moments, all kinds of alarm bells were going off. She was trying to get me to do things I'd already figured out how to do, and doing so in a very passive-aggressive manner.

Normally, I could handle her attitude but in my still-fragile state, I started to panic. Things came to a head when she insisted on cooking me dinner, despite my intention to order a take-away from my favorite Indian restaurant as a treat for my time enduring hospital food. I’m in no position to restrain her as she trots off to the local supermarket.

She comes back and starts to prepare dinner—and promptly overcooks things to the point of burning things to a cinder and setting off all the smoke alarms. Now I’m in full-Monty panic mode: I call a friend, who knew of my accident, and asked her if she would come over and try and rein her in. She comes over within a few minutes and is appalled at the way my ex is behaving.

For reasons that are still unclear to me, my ex’s reaction was seriously deranged. She starts berating me for the accident, and begins to hit me about the head. Now into nuclear-grade panic: I wheel myself next to the stairs and proceed to bum-shuffle my way upstairs to the bathroom, where I promptly lock myself in and proceed to have a complete meltdown.

I can recall hearing my friend and my ex having a major shouting match downstairs, but the next thing I remember is hearing a knock on the door announcing the presence of two officers: my friend (bless her) had called the constabulary, so concerned was she for my well-being. Such was my state of utter panic I refused to open the door to them until my ex had been removed from my house.

They called out for another squad car to take her away, but even then, it took another twenty minutes before I felt safe enough to emerge. And that’s how I split up with my ex!

I Escaped Her Twisted Plot

My ex-best friend of forty years married young and moved away after high school. Her husband was a defense contractor, so they moved around a lot. We kept in touch by phone and met up about once a year for a mini-vacation. I was going through a nasty divorce, and she invited my 14-year-old daughter and me to come to live with her until the divorce was finalized.

I got to her home, which was over 1,800 miles away, and found out that everything she had told me for 32 years was a lie. Her job, her being married, her living situation—everything. She was a hoarder, and about 80% of the house was inaccessible. The parts that were accessible were filthy. She had multiple animals, and there was poop everywhere!

On top of that, she was in the process of being evicted, and she wanted me to give her $8K to lease a new home, in addition to cleaning up her hoard. Her two daughters, who were 21 and 19 at the time, were still living at home, and they began telling me the rest of the story. They told me how she had mountains of debt and planned to fleece me to get a new place to live.

What was worse was what they told me about what they had been through. She had mentally/emotionally/physically harmed both of them throughout their childhood. My “friend’s” common-law husband to confirmed it. I confronted my ex-friend about all of it and told her I was leaving and wasn’t going to give her a cent. She retaliated by calling the authorities on me and telling them I was selling illicit substances.

I almost got taken into custody until the officers realized I had no record, no large sums of money, and no illicit substances on me. The insanity didn’t end there. Then she called child protection services on me, saying I was harming my daughter. Because I wasn’t guilty, there was no proof, and both her daughters made statements that she was lying. My ex-friend then called my unstable ex-husband and told him where I was.

It took me two days to sort everything out and prepare to leave. In that time, she called CPS and reported me three more times, and tried to take my car. She also began calling my elderly and terminally ill mother, telling her all sorts of things. I won’t even go into the vile things she texted to my child. I left and cut all contact.

Burning Down The House

I used to run a small DIY punk venue. My ex, who was angry with me at the time, came to a huge Halloween show we put on, went into the bathroom, lit the trash can on fire, locked the door behind her, and left. I busted the door open and extinguished the fire before the building caught ablaze. I had approx. 250 kids in the venue that night. It was unbelievable.

Cross-Country Crazy

woman using gray binocularsPhoto by Chase Clark on Unsplash

We had been broken up for about ten months and hadn’t spoken in seven. For completely unrelated reasons after our breakup, I had moved across the country. She found out where I lived, flew out there, rented a car, and parked on my block, scouting out my house. In the car was a pair of binoculars, a book on birdwatching, so she could explain to any passersby why she was staring around a neighborhood with binoculars, and a cat carrier.

She didn’t have a cat, but I did. She was planning to break into my house and take my cat. She had even bought a return flight ticket back to the East Coast with the pet fee paid.

A Match Made In Heaven

For some context, my ex-boyfriend and I were together for seven years. Last August, I made the decision to move in to help my mother as she was needing some help recovering from a medical procedure. So I moved out of my boyfriend’s house and moved into my mother’s. Near the end of November, I moved back in with my boyfriend.

I'm assuming that while I was gone, he was seeing another woman, because she kept texting him. I told my boyfriend that he needed to tell her that we were trying to work things out but he continued to tell me that he just was not going to respond so I reached out to her myself. I texted her and just said something along the lines of, “Hi, I know you don't know who I am but me and (ex-boyfriend) have been on and off for about seven years. I'd like to speak with you, could you give me a call”.

She almost immediately responded and said that she would call me. So she calls me, and boy was I in for a surprise. She began ranting about how all of her problems began when Joe Biden became president, she asked me if I was a witch and about all of the lies that she caught (ex-boyfriend) in. I stop and ask her, "Where did you and (ex-boyfriend) meet”?

And you know what she tells me? "In heaven, where he kidnapped me. We have the same markings on our left hand, I don't think you understand”. I thought to myself, "She is being serious...this is insane”. I mention something about the front end of my car needing repair as my ex had rear-ended someone and never got it fixed.

She says, "You mean, (ex-boyfriend)'s car”? I was puzzled and told her that he didn't own a car. She proceeds to tell me that he picked her up in a silver SUV, which was my car. I was pretty upset to say the least. Then my ex-boyfriend walks in and asks who I'm talking to, then she asked me if he knew that she was on the phone and I told her no.

Her response made my heart jump in my chest. She told me, "Good, I'm on my way”. I get off the phone and my boyfriend at the time continued to ask me who I was on the phone with. I told him and then told him that she was on her way. He began freaking out and telling me that we had to leave. So he talks me into leaving (which I didn't agree with, I thought she had a right to say her piece).

We go to the next town over to a hotel. This hotel had no rooms available so we go to another hotel down the road and right as I'm about to get out of my car, this woman opens my car door. I was shocked. How did she know where we were at? So, my first reaction was to shut my door, like no, we are not about to do this today, and I drive off. And she follows—but that’s not the craziest part.

She follows me for two freaking hours. It was 2 am and I stopped my car and told my ex-boyfriend to get out. He gets out of the car and starts running. I can see her car in my rear-view mirror and she puts her car in park, gets out, and begins chasing after him. About 15 minutes later, my ex calls me and tells me where to come get him.

She later sends me a long, rambling letter. What a piece of work.

There's no denying that men have it easier than women do in just about everything.

With this in mind, it's hard not to join in with those who judge men who display stereotypical, chauvinistic behavior.

However, some would argue, or more specifically some MEN would argue, that they are judged for too many things.

And indeed, everyone would agree that far too many men are judged for displaying behavior that doesn't exactly scream "masculinity."

Redditor Few-Strength5065 reached out to the men of Reddit, asking them what they think men should be able to partake in or enjoy without judgment from others, leading them to ask:

Happiness Is In The Eye Of The Beholder

"Being content with enough."- Zenshin26

The Definition Of Antiquated

"Being the one who takes care of kids in a relationship or making less money than their partner."- HartoCD

Everyone Has The Right To Decompress

"Playing."

"I bust my a** at work and save money so I can then play."

"That might be video games, might be a sport, might be building random shit in a workshop, but whatever it is, let a bro have his hobbies/playtime."

"See a 30 year old playing Pokémon?"

"Good, leave him alone and let him have his fun."- Link9454

Adam Driver Snl GIF by Saturday Night LiveGiphy

Head Out Of Gutters People...

"Eating bananas."

"Just tryna get the potassium bro."- MightyKing19

Father's Spending Time With Their Children? The Very Thought!

"Taking kids to the park/walmart/etc."

"Too many horror stories of some Karen taking issue with this as if it's wrong for men to be fathers."

"Also, just being a dad in general."

"There was that phase in the media where the father was played off as some idiot that couldn't even without the help of the wife.'

"Our culture seemed to buy this idea wholesale, and we're still reeling from the effects."- ridicalis

"Being a parent."

"Any time a dad is out alone with his kids other people always ask if he's on babysitting duty."

"It's not called babysitting it's called being a parent."- Elementus94

Fathers Day Dad GIF by America's Funniest Home VideosGiphy

Peace And Quiet Can Be Hard To Come By

"Wanting to be left the hell alone."

"It’s not that we don’t want to spend time with our partners, but for f*ck sake alone time is valuable."

"Sometimes your man just wants a little time to himself and there’s nothing wrong with that or anything to read into about it."-Jollybritishchap

Smart, Smart Boy...

"Maybe a minor one, not talked about a lot but: watching certain movies."

"Growing up I was always taught that certain things were just for girls."

"I’m 29, just watched Charlie’s Angels for the first time a month ago and I’m honestly mad at what could’ve been a pretty formative movie."

'When I was 14 or so, my uncle was trying to ask me and my cousin which movie we wanted to rent for the evening."

"It came down to Catwoman or Scorpion King, and my cousin chose Catwoman only for my uncle to say 'that’s gay' to which my cousin replied: 'how is you wanting to watch The Rock all shirtless and oiled up not gay, but me wanting to watch Halle Berry in a skintight leather cat suit is?'"- CinnaSol

All That Matters Is How They Taste

"Liking 'girly' cocktails."

"Let me have a margarita."

"Generally, anything deemed 'girly'."- Panal-Lleno

Jimmy Fallon Drinking GIFGiphy

NO MEANS NO!!!

"Telling a woman no."- AFLYINGDINGUS

Minimalism Is Popular

"Having empty apartments."

"As much as it’s nice to have decorations in a house, I don’t give a sh*t about it."

"As long as my house is clean and I am comfortable in it then I have the essentials."

"My girlfriend is the only reason our house is decorated."- Grundle_Gripper_

Dancing Alone GIF by Aaron AyeGiphy

Emotions Are A Sign Of Strength

"Opening up their emotions."

"Being a man can be so lonely."

"if your struggling don't be afraid."- JillHardenerOfficial

Interest Can't Be Forced

"Not being interested in sports."- Klutzy_Growth1945

Major League Soccer No GIF by Sporting KCGiphy

Many people have their opinions of what a "real man" should do and be.

Without any justification for that opinion whatsoever.

After all, it seems safe to agree that a "real man" couldn't care less what others think about their interests and hobbies, as long as they aren't bringing any harm to others.

Ideally, they might even be bringing others joy.