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People Share Their Biggest Regret From Their Teenage Years

It is by now common knowledge that the adolescent brain is a half-formed piece of machinery. A teenager simply lacks the ability to always consider the entire context of a situation and execute an informed decision.

Instead, they usually wild out and do a bunch of dangerous stuff.

When people reflect on their teenage years, the most frequent response is somewhere between yearning regret and a cringe. From the clear-eyed vantage of adulthood, the flawed priorities of those youthful years look sharp and obvious.

Stubbornness and the refusal to listen to any adult begins to look dumber than it felt. How we all navigated social dynamics in high school hallways looks like nothing better than hurtful chaos.

And years of recklessness with a body that healed fast can come back to bite.

VibrantArianatora asked, "People of Reddit, what is one thing you regret doing in your teen years? What's advise you give to teens today?"

Can't Assume They Know

"I regret not telling people that I love and cherish their friendship. Just recently found out a person I really cared for passed away. I wish I had been more open about my feelings." -- Rightmeyow

"Do it. People remember that kind of thing, and if something being a little weird is more important to them than someone being genuine and appreciative, then f*ck em. You're about to meet a bunch more people who will likely value that sort of gesture." -- Steelerfan345

Take Your Time on Adulting

"I regret trying to grow up too quickly. I wish I had done a better job enjoying my youth. The responsibilities I took on helped my future, but I wish I would've found a better balance because I feel like I missed out on a lot of things."

-- HanBanan98

An Extended Metaphor

"I wish I'd internalized the fact that everyone is thinking about themselves as much as I'm thinking about myself. They're not concerned with that one time I had a boner, they're worried about how they'll do about the test tomorrow."

"Or hell, they might be worried about that time they had a boner in front of the class. But do you remember that time? Nope. Same goes for them with you. "

-- maleorderbride

Baby Steps

"I regret not properly balancing short term and long term gain. Which to be fair, a lot of people struggle with. But thinking back how if I just dedicate a small bit of time everyday, I can make huge progress."

-- asteraft

Pragmatic Advice

"Don't play football. Don't box."

"I have treatment resistant chronic low-grade depression, persistent anxiety, and bipolar. I say all three because the diagnosis is often in flux. I have seen four psychiatrists."

"I will never know what influence head trauma had on my situation, but I truly wish I didn't have to think about it."

-- mindfeces

If It Wasn't Obvious

"Cheating !!! Never cheat when you are dating or when you are in a relationship. No matter how bad your SO is, cheating is not okay." -- kalpavruksha

"I think the core issue there is being okay being alone. If your SO is so bad, just leave them and be single for a bit. It's fine, it's not the end of the world. It's actually pretty fun in it's own ways." -- IAmASolipsist

An Empty Inner Resolve

"When you're younger you tend to judge people easily based off others opinions without ever getting a chance to form your own. There were several points in my teen years when I was told to avoid X because of Y and later befriended that person and have great memories with them."

"I probably missed out on dozens of great friendships and opportunities all because a kid wasn't seen as 'cool' or was seen as 'weird.' When in reality someone told me those things based off misconceptions, bias, or jealousy."

-- Jewpracabra

Lasting Impressions

"Having hangups about my physique. The people who care (about your physique, not their own) are shi**y people, and it's hard to drop those hangups later in life. I'm a perfectly average guy, but I still won't take my shirt off in public."

-- answermethis0816

No Longer Invincible

"I drank a sh*t ton (metric sh*t ton) of soda. During my teenage years I did major damage to my teeth by covering them with acid and sugar water. Now I have many crowns, and have had many root canals. Next step for me will be implants if my crowns give out."

"This sh*t is both painful and expensive. I wish I didn't drink so much soda and took better care of my teeth."

-- getlostandfound

So Thaat's Why They Fall Asleep on the Couch Instantly

"Being an ungrateful brat and not appreciating the sacrifices my parents made for me. I'm an adult now, with step kids, and it's really hard to be mad at them for the exact same sh*t I pulled as a teenager."

"So I guess my advice is: try to see your parents as people too; people who give up a lot for you and wouldn't mind hearing a 'thank you' once in awhile."

-- Moleypeg

Harsh Realities

"SAVE YOUR DAMN MONEY" -- maleorderbride

"One thing I learned: 'If you're too afraid to check your bank account, you damn well need to check your bank account.' " -- MyJelloJiggles

Before It's Too Late

"I regret getting into drinking heavily and not focusing on school, drinking became my life, I'm still struggling with my alcoholism, it turned my brain to mush." -- Bredundant

"I went through a very similar situation. I had lots of 'reasons' to party instead of attending school, but the end result was not graduating HS and settling for a GED. I eventually ended up in treatment at age 19. I'm now 53 and that treatment was the best thing to happen to me." -- joegofish


"Not playing sports. Not that I would have been good but I wasn't active enough. It would have been good for me physically and socially."

"On that note, not going to dances or dating. I let my anxiety get the best of me."

"On that note, not seeking mental health treatment."

-- valuesandnorms

Open Your Eyes!

"Most teenagers are awful narcissists. They don't realize it, and they grow out of it. But if I could fix one thing from being a teenager, it would be to stop worrying so much about what I wanted and how I felt and be more aware of the people around me."

"I think that one small measure of awareness would have prevented many things I regret now."

-- elzarcho

Realizing it Was in Your Control

"Not doing something about my health, sooner."

"I was really fat as a teenager and young adult. I didn't get my sh!t together and fix my unhealthy relationship with food until I was in my early 30s."

"I missed out on a LOT of key moments in life because I was so afraid of going out in public, judgement, being made fun of and being the butt of jokes (like the time I thought a guy liked me and he was just pretending to so his mate could go out with my best friend)."

-- FuzzyRoseHat

When the Motivations Come into Focus

"I regret getting into a relationship with someone, purely because he found me attractive. At the time, I was depressed and insecure, and I thought another chance for someone to want me would surely never come again. So I dated someone for like 4 months who I wasn't even attracted to, physically, emotionally, or mentally."

"I only broke up with him when my twin sister told me he flirted with her before he flirted with me, and she hadn't wanted to tell me because she didn't want to hurt my feelings."

"My advice? Focus on healthily improving your self confidence. No one is going to love you like you can love yourself - certainly not teenage grease bags who make you feel like sh*t."

-- qeqilia

The Human Brain is NOT Invincible

"Take it easy on the drugs. You have your whole life ahead of you and still have lots of development. Make the most out of being sober." -- SexDeity

"Doing drugs. It can really slow you down on life and 1 really bad trip is enough to f*ck up your life. Had a really close call." -- 1ivr3

Easiest Time to Do it

"Learn a second language! Grew up with people who spoke Spanish at home but was taught English in school and never bothered to retain the Spanish I knew now I regret it and trying to relearn is hard."

-- NyxtheRebelcat

Risks Not Taken

"I don't know why I bothered taking AP classes for topics that I never actually needed in college or afterwards. I feel like I made my time in high school unnecessarily stressful."

"I also should have tried to skip class at least once. Just to see if I could."

-- DubioTheDubious

Do Something About How You Feel

"Go to counselling if you're not happy. There doesn't have to be anything 'wrong' with you, you don't have to have a mental illness - sometimes life is hard due to environmental factors that you can't control."

"Learning coping mechanisms from a professional is so helpful and I wish I had done so when I was a young teenager."

-- Gooner1798

Dig In

"I regret not taking sport seriously back then. I enjoyed football and cricket and was very talented in both sports but I only enjoyed playing with my mates, I was too shy to join a team and make new friends. I had a good circle of friends I didn't wanna leave for anyone else."

"Only later on did I realise while at university that I'm pretty dam good at both sports but to late to be professional I think. I joined a semi professional club when I was around 21 and still with them 15 years later. Think I'm ready to retire now"

-- ProtectedCesc

You Will Pay for it Eventually

"Abusing credit. Got a bunch of cards and an overdraft at 18. Having a shiny plastic credit card made me feel grown up because that's what my older friends (who actually had jobs) were doing."

"Started spending recklessly. Built up debt. Had late payments, and then missed a few entirely. Worried for ages, had to sell some things. Took me the next four years to get out of it. Debt free now."

-- kaleidodreams

Let it Go

"Always being so self conscious and wrapped up in myself. I was so afraid what others thought of me I never really just enjoyed high school and life in general. I was too busy being someone I wasn't."

"I would tell teens, be yourself, make good friends that truly care about you, and don't worry about what others think. Find something you enjoy and do it. Enjoy those years, cuz adulthood comes and life gets a lot harder."

-- itiswhatitiskid

Multiple Pathways Exist

"I went straight to college from high school. I wanted to party and have fun and dropped out after 6 months."

"I wish I'd explored options for what to do after high school. I had this idea it was straight to college or work retail forever."

"I would've been way better off taking a year or two to do something interesting and or/fun but not lucrative. (Work in national parks; Americorps; hell get a part time job and hang around home making art.)"

-- turingtested

Do you have something to confess to George? Text "Secrets" or "🤐" to +1 (310) 299-9390 to talk to him about it.

People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'

Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.

Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.

For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.

I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.

My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.

Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

"Give an example; how weird are you really?"

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."

– Practical_Eye_3600

"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."

– bikergirlr7

"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."

– KingBooRadley


"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."

– AquamarineCheetah

"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."

"Makes me think my "memory is full.""

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."

– OhhGoood

"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."

– Frostygrunt


"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."

– RandomSharinganUser

"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."

– Kolkeia

If Only

"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."

– drummerskillit

"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."

– Isitjustmedownhere

"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."

"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."

"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."

"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."

– We-R-Doomed

"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

"I can hear the television while it's on mute."

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."

"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."

– LesPaltaX

"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."

– MoonlightKayla

I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!

Close up face of a woman in bed, staring into the camera
Photo by Jen Theodore

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?

But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.

It would be so great to be sure there is something else.

But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.

Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:

"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."



"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."

"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."

"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."


Take Me Back

"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."

"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."



"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."

"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”



"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"


"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"


The Fog

"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."

"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."


Through the Walls

"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.

The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.

Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.

Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:

"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."

– r7ndom

"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."

– dee-fondy

"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"

"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”

"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."

– KatMagic1977

"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


"I can buy clothes in any store I want."

– WaySavvyD

"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"

– LiZZygsu

"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"

"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."

– Princess-Pancake-97

"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."

– snic2030

"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."

"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."

– dma1965

People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.

But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.

That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.