Relationship Red Flags That Need Immediate Attention According To Couples Therapists
Being in a relationship can be a beautiful and empowering thing. But not all relationships make our lives better.
Truth be told, some relationships damage our well-being and impair our mental health. Some relationships can be toxic or even violent—it's important to keep an eye out for red flags.
But what are red flags? Simply put, they are warning signs that a person cannot have a healthy relationship. They can indicate unhealthy and even manipulative behavior. Excessive jealousy is something to look out for. Frequent lying is another. It's important to remember that red flags can be insidious... and that they can grow bigger over time.
The question is: What do you look out for?
Couples therapists told us what to look out for after Redditor Gnerdy asked the online community:
"Couples therapists, without breaking confidentiality, what are some relationships that instantly set off red flags, and do you try and get them to work out?"
"These are typically young women..."
"When one person is entirely dependent on the other, especially at a relatively young age. I mean financially and emotionally."
"These are typically young women (sometimes young men as well) who do not work, do not have children, stay home all day and have no friends or hobbies outside of hanging out with their spouse. Very unhealthy, and a huge red flag. Always ends in a painful and messy breakup."
"Generally, we try to get them to find a friend, join a community, get a job or volunteer - something to provide them with self worth and personal fulfillment outside of their spouse."
The idea of joining a relationship without anything of your own to fall back on is legitimately terrifying.
"One person says..."
"One partner says they’re seeking your services to help them determine if they want to stay together; the other partner says they’re seeking your services to make it so they stay together."
"Then it’s about highlighting the points and allowing the person who is on the fence decide what they want, since the other person knows."
That's so depressing, just waiting for someone to decide if they want you. Sadly, it's common.
"This comes in many forms, from gaslighting to just simple denial of another's opinion. Most of the time one or both parties are simply trying to be heard on an emotional level with an event or topic that was brought up, but the other party takes this as a personal attack on their ideals."
Do not tell someone how they feel or what they think. It won't end well.
"I saw a couple..."
"I saw a couple that was doing "retaliatory" cheating (and telling each other about it). When they got through their anger, they decided to call a truce and made peace. With their level of emotional maturity, I doubt it lasted. I don't know if I helped them or prolonged their suffering. It was their decision to come to counseling, so I think it was the help they wanted."
"Other clients realize what they really want is "divorce counselling". What's the best way to behave civilly and minimize damage to the kids while we go our separate ways?"
I think it would be great if divorce counseling were normalized. It would save a lot of people a lot of pain.
"People who approach therapy..."
"People who approach therapy with the idea that they must convince the therapist that they’re right and their partner is wrong. Almost like they’re complaining to a parent or boss to have them sort out the problems."
Pointing out all the things your partner did wrong and demanding that the therapist tell you how to fix it isn't a winning strategy for any relationship.
"Contempt. When I experience true contempt from one in the relationship I know it is usually over. Look towards a peaceful ending at that point if possible."
Ah, contempt! One of the four horsement predictors of divorce!
"When people come in..."
"One of the biggest red flags I see when working with a new couple is when they've totally forgotten the good. Part of relationship therapy is reconnecting a couple with what they like about each other, what initially attracted them to each other, and what the positives are between them."
"When people come in and they've been so unhappy for so long that they actually can't remember what it was like to be in love, or to even like each other, they're just about hopeless."
"You don't have to be happy for therapy to work--but if you can't even reminisce about the good times, then the good times are probably over."
This makes sense. Why did you get together? What did you like about each other? What do you love about each other?
It's important to keep that in mind.
"It erodes trust..."
"Couples in a tit for tat arrangement. For example: I cheated so you can have one night to cheat with whomever. Or I violated your trust and did drugs, you can go out and do whatever for one night. It erodes trust and compounds the hurt."
Yeah... nothing about that behavior is even remotely healthy. People should just leave at that point.
"I most commonly see..."
"Control to an excessive amount. I most commonly see partners having to send pictures holding up a certain number of fingers or proving that it's a live picture. This is abuse."
This is utterly heartbreaking. Hopefully these patients recognized the signs and bailed.
"Overbearing parents and in laws. I understand there's a ton of cultural nuance here, and I work with couples who have arranged marriages, as well as the south Asian community. However, when a spouse is more allied with their parents and calls them on speakerphone for fights, or often speaks ill of their partner to their parents, I usually see these couples stay very unhappily married for years."
Overbearing parents can absolutely threaten a relationship. It's important to remember that your relationship is separate from your parents — and that your partner deserves your love and allegiance.
Knowing how to identify red flags in a relationship is extremely important. In order to address them, you must learn what they look like and why they are so dangerous.
While this list isn't exhaustive, it's definitely a start. It is possible to identify red flags and put an end to toxic relationships before the damage is done.
Have some thoughts of your own? Tell us more in the comments below.
We've all done things we aren't proud of.
Be it saying something behind someone's back, a prank that went a little too far, or a heated exchange with a friend or family member, everyone has crossed the line at one point or another.
Thankfully, more often than not, these mistakes can be salvaged with an apology and a little contrition.
Unless you've done something that goes well beyond a simple "I'm sorry."
We’re talking about actions that can only be described as "f*cked up."
"Redditors, what is the most fucked up thing you have ever done?"
Duplicity Never Pays Off
"I’m a recovered heroin addict (9 years sober), and I have a lot of stories of how much of a sh*t person I use to be."
"I really can’t gauge what my worst moment would be, but I can post a story or two definitely."
"One day, I was flat broke and on my last bag of dope. My 'neighborhood pharmacist' just recently was arrested for a dui."
"Brainstorming, I came up with an idea to try and get some pills at the e.r. I still had med insurance at the moment, so I thought this was my best option."
"My buddy came by and we were hanging out outside smoking a cigarette and trying to figure out how to get hurt, just enough to get some pills, but not enough to actually have permanent repercussions."
"There was this big cinder block beside my garage, and I decided to drop it on my foot in hopes of just breaking a toe at most."
"I stood outside on the concrete patio for about five minutes with the cinderblock trying to hype myself up enough to drop it on my foot."
"I couldn’t do it, psyched myself out too much."
"I told my friend that he would have to do it for me, and he said OK."
"He held it about waist high and dropped it on my foot."
"I knew it wasn’t enough damage so I told him that he needed to put it up higher and drop it again to which he did."
"So go to the hospital tell them that I was carrying boxes downstairs to the basement and dropped them when I slipped on the bottom step so I go back, get x-rays, and I am in the waiting room."
"Dr comes in and tells me that I’ve torn numerous ligaments in my foot and probably would hurt less if I had just broke my foot."
"Hearing this I was excited thinking yes I just scored."
"I Didn’t care about the pain at the moment just happy that I just potentially scored."
"They release me, and hand me a script."
"They wrote me a script for ibuprofen 800mg."
When Pranks Stop Being Funny
"Was night manager at fast food establishment during college."
"There was a bitter prank rivalry between our establishment and the Subway next to us."
"After months of prank escalation, I crammed a rotting hamburger patty in the handle of the Subway manager's trunk lid so he went knuckle deep in rotting burger when he went home."
"That was the end of the prank war and I've never forgiven myself for crossing the red line."- Quivum
How Ironic This Happened At A Therapists Office
"I’m gonna rat my little sister out."
"During our parents’ divorce & custody battle, we were forced to sit in on family counseling sessions."
"I was 12 & she was 8."
"We thought my Mom was acting funny & might have been banging the counselor on the side for her own personal testimonial interests (still not confirmed)."
"So we were pissed off because we loved our Mom and our Dad."
"It seemed like the counselor favored our mom over our Dad, and it got rough sometimes watching him become outed by the only 2 adult forces who didn’t love him in this world."
"ANYWAY, my little sister and I were left alone in his office, and she decided she was gonna take a sh*t in his little trash can to assert dominance."
"It was asserted."
"We never went back."- Pleasant-Security831
When You Gotta Go...
"Ugh this was an embarrassing one that I hope no one ever finds out."
"One night a few years ago, we (my boyfriend and his family) get Chinese food from our favorite little place."
"For some reason this night it doesn't sit well with me."
"An hour after eating I get that intensely sick feeling, like you have to poop so bad that you want to throw up."
"Whatever, I go upstairs and destroy the bathroom."
"It's important to note, there's two bathrooms upstairs and none downstairs, which is like a little apartment where my boyfriend and I stay."
"After I'm sure my bowels are empty, I go back down to lay in bed."
"Thought I could nap it off."
"Nah, about 30 seconds after laying down I get the urge to go again."
"I run upstairs and to my horror, both bathrooms are occupied. His sister is refusing to get of the shower even though it's an emergency and his dad is blowing up the other toilet, presumably suffering a similar fate to mine."
"I begrudgingly go sit in bed and contemplate my options as the bubbling in my gut grows worse."
"Bust down the bathroom door and traumatize his sister?"
"Make the 30 minute drive home?"
"No, it was urgent."
"I even thought about sh*tting my pants (against my will) and dealing with the embarrassment."
"God I don't want to subject my future in-laws to that."
"I begrudgingly realize my only option is to go outside like nature intended."
"Their yard is very open and it was a super bright-moonlit night, so there was no place to do it without feeling super exposed."
"Except for under the trampoline."
"My thought process was: no one has used the trampoline for years, and it's out of sight/ walking range so no one could accidentally step in it."
"Great. I do my business, get soaked in the process ( it was slightly raining and the trampoline was POURING water on me), clean up with napkins and wet wipes, come inside. Immediately throw up in the trash can from the shock/embarrassment/anxiety/sickness."
"Clean that up and immediately go to bed."
"Everything was fine for a few days, until my boyfriend's dad lightheartedly tells me how he was late for work that morning."
"The dog had rolled in some shit and he had to get a bath."
"I felt like throwing up all over again, but thankfully everyone just suspected it was some type of animal poop."-WeirdConnections
Revenge Is Seldom The Answer
"My hometown is generally pretty middle-class to poor."
"There's a bunch of rich people that live in the woods and one of them had a kid that went to our high school and bullied the f*ck out of the kids that weren't as wealthy."
"That sh*t head grew up and bought a Camaro last summer and removed the muffler so it would be the loudest thing in town."
"On new years eve of 2021, he decided to ruin a town tradition and lapped the town common with it during the tree lighting ceremony. while people were caroling and giving thanks."
"Summer of last year, me and a friend decided it was time to get revenge because nobody wanted to do anything about it."
"My friend's dad owned a junkyard and they recently got an old train horn from a busted diesel that ended up there."
"We spent a good week getting it set up in the back of his work truck and decided to wait on it for a little while."
"A month or so later, we found out he was having a party of some kind with other rich folks and his family but we didn't know what it was about, so we carefully parked outside his house on the opposite side of his fence."
"Right as it was starting, we blasted the train horn and peeled out before anyone knew what happened."
"News got out later and we found out the party we bombed was actually a wake for his late grandfather."- G4rg0yle_Art1st
Seemed Harmless At The Time...
"You know how people bag up their leaves and leave them out by the street?"
"As a teen we used to go out at night and dump them back out on people's lawns."
"Thinking about it now I would be so pissed if someone did that to me."- Toastbuns
They Didn't Have ANY Doubts?...
"When I was about 15 a neighbor of ours stopped us in the road and chewed us out for riding our go-carts in the road."
"This despite the fact that it was a dirt road in a rural area which was the perfect place for riding go carts."
"He was a complete a**hole about it too."
"I don't know where I got the idea from but I promptly went home, called the electric company, pretended to be the neighbor, and told them I wanted my electricity turned off as we were moving."
"It was the eighties so they just looked the account up by name and address and promptly entered my request in the system."
"I'm sure it was just a minor inconvenience for them but they deserved it in my opinion."- BaconReceptacle
Personal Demons Are Hard To Fight
"The day before I stopped drinking alcohol altogether, I was in a really dark place for a number of reasons."
"And I was ABSOLUTELY using alcohol as a crutch."
"One of the reasons why I was in such a bad place, emotionally, was because my cousin was in decline due to glioblastoma."
"I was actively seeing this person, that I loved dearly, lose his sense of self and ability to understand conversations and situations."
"And he was young—just turned 50."
"There was a lot of light in the beginning, but considering that glioblastoma is effectively a stage-less brain cancer, it was almost guaranteed he would lose the battle."
"The day that I stopped drinking altogether was the day that I was supposed to drive him to a research institute for his monthly treatment and check-in."
"It was the only time I was asked to take on that level of responsibility, as his wife would normally take him."
"I helped in a bunch of different ways, like hanging out with him when he’d otherwise be alone, but this appointment was pretty big."
"I depressedly drank myself into a stupor the night before and missed our meet-up time."
"I’d said that I’d be there no matter what, and I wasn’t."
"The appointment happened, and he 'reassured me' everything was okay as he knew the battle was over anyway."
"But I will never forgive myself for that."
"Even typing this out makes me feel like the biggest piece of sh*t."
"I wish I were sober then."- ssssskkkkkrrrrrttttt
Credit where it is due, just about every one of these people admitted to doing something wrong.
Even if it doesn't excuse their actions, as knowingly doing something you know is wrong might make it even worse...
One of my least favorite parts of job hunting is the interview. It’s nerve wracking to try and guess what the best way to present yourself would be, and I find out doubly nerve wracking because I’m so shy. However, it is an integral part of process, and not just for the employers.
While the point of an interview is for the employers to get to know potential hires and make sure they know what they’re talking about and would be a good addition to the company, potential hires can use the interview to their benefit as well.
You get to find out more about the company, the people you will be working for, and the work environment. You’ll know if the company is going to give you what you want, and if the workplace is pleasant or toxic.
Redditors know this all too well, and are sharing their stories about what red flags during interviews clued them into the fact that the workplace is toxic.
Curious to know more, a Redditor asked:
“What are some red flags in an interview that reveals the job is toxic?"
The Tax Break Ain't Worth It
"In one interview I was enthusiastically assured that overtime wasn't an issue, but if you pick up an extra shift they pay in gift cards so that it saves you on taxes."
"I know they're trying to save themselves employment taxes and time and a half, they're not doing me any favors. I declined their offer."
"The IRS wants a word with you."
Time For A Vacay
"I always ask everyone in the room when their last vacation was."
"This is a great tip."
"Or some variety of how often they take vacation, especially for places with "unlimited" vacation. I interviewed at such a company once, and my interviewer said he never took off and was talking about a coworker who takes off frequently in an annoyed tone."
Started From The Bottom...And Stayed There
"“We’ll start you at minimum and re-evaluate in a month”"
"...which turns into a year."
"When I mentioned a company's dismal Glassdoor evaluations, they became so enraged that they ended the interview. Well. I suppose I escaped that danger"
"I brought up a company's poor Glassdoor reviews during an interview before too (they were all complaining about the owner of a small company). The folks interviewing me looked at each other and said that the owner could be difficult but he's in Mexico most of the time so I'd never have to see him. I accepted the job because I was desperate but sadly that was around the time the owner decided to stay around and get his hands in everything. I was only there for 8 months and I think five people left before I did because of him."
Not The Boss You Want
"Had an owner of a restaurant tell me "If you have a problem don't come to me cause you won't like how I fix it" Yeah, keep your job."
"One of the key functions of being a boss is helping the people under you solve a problem. What a douchebag."
High And Mighty
"The interviewer keeps telling you how fortunate you are to be there like they are doing you a favor by giving you the job."
"I’m a teacher. My last principal reminded us in every meeting—usually more than once a month—how lucky we are to be working there. My new principal starts every meeting—two per semester—by telling us that we are talented enough to work anywhere and he’s honored that we choose to work with (not for) him. It’s a drastic and beautiful change. My new school mostly was hiring because the district was growing and they simply needed more teachers. My last school was hiring because they had a 50% turnover rate."
Know The Numbers
"Trying to get you to agree to start before they tell you what you’ll be paid."
"I applied to a position out of state and was offered the position during the phone interview. When asked when I could start I replied two weeks, but stated I couldn't accept without knowing how much it paid and having that in an official offer letter/email."
"This dude lost his sh*t and said all huffy puffy "Well, I mean, I don't have the numbers right in front of me, but I guess if you have to know I can get that for you." I said yes, I have to know. He said he'd call back. He never did."
The Answers Are Obvious
"Once I had an interview where they silently gave me a questionnaire to fill out for 50 questions and just went to another room. The questions were very detailed and stupid, mostly about money. ‘Is your goal to make money in our company?’ (If the answer is ‘yes’, then you didn’t pass). I left before I even finished answering this list. And then I found out that they register employees for an incredibly low official salary, promising to pay most of it at the end of the month, but they delayed money for six months and don’t give it out if the person quit."
"I’m glad I left."
"I interviewed for one once where the manager spent the whole time asking me the usual questions in between rounds of berating some poor tech support employee on the phone about their payroll software."
"Also any time a hiring manager talks up the company's bonuses and raises to justify their low salary, you'd better believe you're not actually getting either."
Not All Heroes Wear Capes
"I drove about 4 hours to an interview in another city. I told the person interviewing me that I was happy at my current job and wouldn't consider leaving just for the higher pay."
"He stood up and looked over the cubicle walls to make sure no one was around and whispered, "You don't want to work here.""
"I passed on that job but while in the new city I applied for another job where I have been happy for the last 25+ years."
What A Real Interview Is All About
"When they don’t realize that you’re interviewing each other."
"After realizing this, I was never nervous again."
Not So Occasional
""We expect our employees to be flexible regarding work schedules:"
"Would you be available to work evenings, weekends, and occasionally on holidays with short notice according to our needs?""
"When they have nothing good to say about the person whose position they are trying to fill. They aren’t necessarily talking bad about the person- just little digs, almost passive aggressive."
Be Careful What Group You Invade
"Once you realize that all upper management is family."
"This, or they're all from the same church or community. Nothing like being passed for a promotion by the new guy because he's with the higher ups every Sunday despite being totally incompetent at the actual job. Classic nepotism."
"Or they are all best friends."
"So when you have to make a complaint against one of them, they don't take it seariously and they dismiss it because they think you are the problem when in fact, they are the ones who are toxic."
"(Yeah, I was in that situation)"
Know Your Worth
"An interviewer tried to convince me to lowball myself after I said what I’d accept as a minimum salary which was in their offer range from the posting. “If we pay you more you wouldn’t get a bonus at the end of the year, and you’d be really upset when everyone else got one.”"
"What he was “able” to offer salary wise was $10k below their posted range."
"I'd rather get a salary than a bonus anyway. A salary is guaranteed; a bonus is not."
There are more red flags here than most sporting events!
Do you have any to add? Let us know in the comments below.
Content Warning: Gore, horror, cannibalism.
Reading is an incredible pastime that can not only entertain but help to expand your mind.
But there are plenty of stories out there that will leave its readers chilled or up at night, possibly for weeks, thinking about what they've read.
Currently reading Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk, Redditor Kooky_Bicycle8475 asked:
"What is the most f**ked up book you've ever read?"
'The Metamorphosis' by Franz Kafka
"I read 'Metamorphosis' to see if it was really as cursed as everyone says it is."
"Yeah, I underestimated it. It was even worse."
'The Jungle' by Upton Sinclair
"'The Jungle' by Upton Sinclair actually made me puke."
'Cows' by Matthew Stokoe
"'Cows' by Matthew Stokoe."
"I read it in eighth grade and I regret reading it, it was so gross."
'Unwind' by Neal Shusterman
"'Unwind' by Neal Shusterman. There’s a scene in the book of it (unwinding) happening and I literally couldn’t sleep for a week."
"It really stayed with me and it took that same week for me to pick the book back up and finish it. So f**ked up and I felt that kids fear every step of the way."
'Outer Dark' by Cormac McCarthy
"Probably 'Outer Dark' by Cormac McCarthy. I read it years ago, and it still lives in my head."
'Wild Highway' by Bill Drummond and Mark Manning
"The most depraved book I've ever read is 'Wild Highway' by Bill Drummond and Mark Manning."
"Former KLF art terrorists on a quest to find Mobutu in former Zaire. Deeply racist, homophobic, misogynist, and violent. But can just about be read as the darkest possible satire, which I think it is. Probably."
"The only book where I actually, genuinely couldn't believe that what I was reading had been published. Just completely insane."
'House of Leaves' and 'The Hot Zone'
"House of Leaves... not really f**ked up, just a weird a** read. Words can't really describe it. It's hard to read as well. Took about 100 pages before it got to the point where I didn't want to put it down."
"'The Hot Zone' and 'Demons in the Freezer' also. Kind of non-fiction written in a very story-driven manner. Both are scary beyond anything because one deals with filovirus like Ebola, and the other talks about smallpox."
"The one on smallpox states that each of the three level-4 labs in the world had a supply of smallpox. When the USSR fell, so did their Level-4 lab. Guess what? Their supply of smallpox is in the wind, no one knows where it went, so 1/3 of the world's supply may very well be in the hands of terrorists."
"My wife read 'The Hot Zone' when she was five months pregnant, and she couldn't make it past the first 40 pages."
'The Good Old Days' by Ernst Klee et al.
"'The Good Old Days' by Ernst Klee, Willi Dressen and Volker Reiss. It's an exhaustive compilation of all the documents kept by the Nazis of the Holocaust, as they were committing it (they were fastidious record-keepers and still had tons left over despite trying to destroy evidence in the final days)."
"Most people don't know this, and I didn't before I read this book, that the killing of Jewish people started when Polish citizens started dragging their Jewish neighbors to the local gas station or other public square-type areas, to beat them to death with lead pipes as their other neighbors cheered them on."
"Germany started institutionalizing this murder by then taking trucks loaded with hundreds of people at a time (this is after sequestering all the Jewish people into ghettos where they were told they were being held for 'processing'), taking them out to the woods, and shooting them all to death 10 at a time. They'd kill men one day, women another day, kids the next, and each day they'd do as many as 10,000 people."
"Then, when the Nazis found that their soldiers were suffering PTSD from literally killing truckloads of kids with machine guns every day, they started rerouting the exhaust systems on transport vans so prisoners would be asphyxiated in the back of them."
"And then, of course, the SS soldiers in charge were complaining about the disturbing noises they were hearing as people begged for their lives in death, as well as the horrific mess of tortured bodies they came upon when opening up the back of these vans."
"And then Siemens Corporation, a major German corporation which all of you will recognize is still in business today, discovered that a pesticide they developed, Zyklon B, was the most effective tool for asphyxiation. And this was YEARS after the Holocaust started. Millions were already dead, but many millions more would die to Zyklon B in just the last few years of the war."
"So yeah, I bring this book up whenever some absolute ignorant jacka** tries to claim 'it wasn't as bad as they claimed it was' or that 'it didn't happen.' My grandfather liberated one of those camps and has the photos to prove it."
"Most disturbing book I've ever read and I don't even think I made it all the way to the end."
'1984' by George Orwell
"I read '1984' when I was 14 or 15 years old, and it kind of really hit me. Took me a few weeks to process properly."
'Pinocchio' by Carlo Collodi
"The original 'Pinocchio,' which my mom thought would be fun to read to me when I was maybe four or five years old."
"Holy s**t. That book is so dark, so bleak, and so gory. Pinocchio himself is the most disturbing character in the story. He's not the lovable, if wayward, kid we see in the Disney movie."
"Book Pinocchio is a twisted little psycho who delights in tormenting people. Disney's Pinocchio learns valuable lessons from Jiminy Cricket. When the talking cricket tries to give advice to Book Pinocchio, Book Pinocchio smashes him to death with a wooden mallet."
"I saw that Disney made a new version and something inside of me just went, 'NOPE!'"
'Tender is the Flesh' by Agustina Bazterrica
"I'm about 2/3 of the way through 'Tender is the Flesh' now. I took a break from it because it's so rough."
"The human cattle aspect is bad enough, but the emotional hell the main character goes through is probably one of the more difficult-to-handle things I've ever read."
"It's so well written and definitely worth the read if you like books that ruin your day."
'All Quiet on the Western Front' by Erich Maria Remarque
"'All Quiet on the Western Front.' I read this book on my lunch breaks at the first job I worked at."
"I was not expecting the ending and literally sat there silent for about 20 minutes trying to process it before having to punch back in for work."
"Great book, highly recommend not reading it at work."
'Childmare' by Nick Sharman
"'Childmare' by Nick Sharman. My mum's boyfriend lived in a house share and one of the guys there left it lying about. 10-year-old me just started leafing through."
"The plot is that lead poisoning in the water supply drives the children of London insane. Insane like bullies beating weak kids' skulls with cricket bats, and stabbing another through the eye with a pen, and so forth."
"Read it as an adult and it's pulp horror crap, but at the time, it was pretty nuts."
'A Child Called It' by Dave Pelzer
"'A Child Called It.' No question."
Oh, the Middle School Curiosity
"'Flowers in the Attic' by V.C. Andrews."
"'The Lovely Bones' by Alice Sebold."
"'Lolita' by Vladimir Nabokov."
"All from curiosity when I was a middle schooler."
Each of these stories are spine-tingling and haunting by their own right, and perhaps it's best that this subReddit has now been "warned" before opening one of these books.
But there are bound to be some horror-lovers out there who will seek these out in pure curiosity now.
When I was seven, I saw a cartoon of Ben Franklin discovering electricity when lightning accidentally struck a kite that he was flying. I didn’t totally understand how that helped him discover electricity, but since I was only seven, I believed that to be what happened.
The truth is, Ben Franklin did not actually discover electricity -- that happened over 1,000 years prior. He just demonstrated the connection between lightning and electricity.
Moreover, his kite was not accidentally struck by lightning. If it was, the lighting would’ve struck him by extension, and he might not have even survived long enough to demonstrate his findings. In fact, the kite was part of an experiment that he conducted on purpose.
I know all this now, but not everyone does. A lot of people still believe lightning accidentally struck Ben Franklin’s kite, and that he discovered electricity through that happy accident. And that is just one of the many historic events that people believe in.
However, most of those events either didn’t happen at all or happened differently than we may think.
Redditors have recognized a lot of other historical events or facts that people believe, but are actually fake or untrue, and have shared this information.
It all started when Redditor FarajEltaira asked:
“What is a part of history that we consider to be a fact is 100% fake?”
The Absence Of Color
"Ninjas dressed in all black to stay stealthy in the night or something like that. Ninjas dressed like normal people to blend in, the all black look stemmed from Japanese theatre to make it more obvious to the audience who the ninjas were."
"If they wore all black it'd be quite obvious and they'd stick out like a sore thumb"
"EDIT: most of you pointed out it also came from stagehands, that makes a lot of sense too"
Pull It Tight
"Corsets were not typically tight laced. They were only tight laced by the highly fashionable women, and usually only for particular events or portraits. Corsets were designed to be comfortable. Women wore a cotton layer underneath the corset, so it didn't rub against the skin. The corset was more like a bra, bit instead of using the shoulders to support it used the whole torso. Some people claim they are much more comfortable than modern bras. The intense proportions of the past were achieved with Corsets AND padding. Tight lacing was uncommon, but layers of petticoats or hoops or bum rolls or whatever else at the time was very common to give women the trendy body shape at the time."
In The Ring
"The image of Roman gladiators fighting to the death. While there were many exhibition fights in the arenas where the goal was death, these were not gladiator contests. Prisoners, and the condemned, were thrown out to fight to the death, but not real gladiators.Training a gladiator was an expensive, and lengthy, investment and having them die constantly would be bad for business."
"The Midnight Ride Of Paul Revere
"Paul Revere did not run around Massachusetts shouting "The British are coming" because if he did everyone would look at him like he'd lost his mind. ALMOST EVERYONE IN THE COLONIES WAS BRITISH!"
"He actually said, "The Regulars are coming""
"He also only carried that message for a small stretch of the ride. There were about a half dozen messengers passing it along. We remember Paul Revere as the only rider because, no joke, his name fit best in Longfellow’s poem"
All The Information
"The Lady who sued McDonalds didn't do so frivolously. She received third degree burns from how hot that coffee was, and needed a skin graft. It was quickly found that that location was keeping the coffee well above the temperature you can legally serve a hot drink in a cup at. The fact that most people think this suit was over the temperature of the coffee, and not the debilitating burns that woman recieved, is one of the PR worlds greatest triumphs. You are not immune to propaganda."
All You Read Is Not True
"That Einstein said “ The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”"
""Don't believe everything you read on the internet" - Albert Einstein"
"Einstein never failed math, the rumor started from Ripley’s Believe It Or Not and Einstein actually responded to them saying “I never failed in mathematics. Before I was 15 I had mastered differential and integral calculus.” He wasn’t very good at the non-science related classes though and did fail French."
A Quiet Night
"The Boston Tea party didn’t have some grand celebration, a lot of the colonists were confused and it’s recorded as one of Boston’s most quiet nights"
"A stegosaurus fighting a t rex. They lived millions of years apart . Stegosaurus 144 lived million years ago T rex 65 million years ago."
"Insane difference. Still almost most every dinosaur related media places them together."
"Whatever the f*ck is on the History Channel nowadays."
"I know the exact moment I gave up on the History Channel. A guy came in to a pawn shop with a uniform and said, "it's from the war with the Philippines.""
"The guy in the shop said, "there's no such thing as the war with the Philippines.""
"My undergrad senior thesis was on the Philippine-American war."
"It ain't even historical anymore they should rename it as the "whatever we feel like it" channel"
"What's Up, Doc?"
"Rabbits CANNOT live on a diet of carrots and fruits. It’s like asking a toddler to live on a diet of candy. They also cannot live on a diet of completely lettuce and leaves (though it’s close)."
"Rabbits need need need hay for a healthy diet, and pellets are heavily recommended as well(though they also have limits, should be in the bag according to the bunny’s weight). Greens are good, not to be the main main diet, and fruits or carrots can be given as treats."
"Bugs Bunny led a lot of people to believe rabbits live off of carrots. They do not. They will die if you expect them to live on a diet of 100% carrots."
The Teeth Of The Matter
"That George Washington had wooden teeth. He had false teeth, yes. But they were made of ivory. He never had wooden teeth."
A Wooden Horse?
"The Trojan Horse wasn't real. Historians are all pretty much unanimous on this."
"My personal theory is that the trojan horse story relates to a traitor within Troy's cavalry"
"William Howard Taft never got stuck in a bathtub!"
"I also find it weird/hilarious/sad that that's what he's known for instead of being known for being the only person to have served as both President and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court."
Is it weird that I’m sad the bathtub thing turned out to be false?