People Share The Most Disturbing Thing That Has Ever Happened To Them
Life is full of surprises. Some of those surprises are good. Others are not all that pleasant.
Some of these surprises can even be downright scary. Those are the kind that really take a toll on people's psyche, and they usually stay with us for the rest of our lives.
Curious to find out what some of these disturbing and scary surprises are, a Redditor asked:
"What is the scariest/creepiest/most disturbing thing you have ever encountered?"
The Worst Possible Ending
"About 20 years ago, I was working at a school. A teacher was in my shared office working and she and her recently divorced daughter both worked worked at this school. Anyway, her ex son-in-law just came into the school without signing in and came into my office asking his ex mother-in-law where his ex wife (her daughter) was. At this time, I had only heard anecdotal, vague stuff about him, but the second he opened my office door, I was really scared. He just had this look that told me not to engage with him in any way."
"He tried to get his ex-wife to go somewhere with him and she refused and he left the school. The mother and her daughter didn't show up to work the next day and they didn't call in either. The principal went to check on them and found them shot dead along with two other people. We just continued to have school that day with kids talking about them being dead all day and it was just horrible."
An Alien Invasion?
"I was around 19 years old, and the night host/closer of a semi-famous pancake restaurant. We closed at 2 am, everyone did their thing while I counted the money, did the books, called in the numbers, etc. We locked up around 3 am, everyone said see ya tomorrow, and left. It was a bright full moon, but kind of hazy, and I was two blocks from work when I thought I saw something odd. I missed it as I was driving, but swore I saw someone up on top of a houses roof. Glancing around while I'm driving through some neighborhoods, I saw another figure standing on a roof, then another, and more and more. I started to freak out, it's 3 in the morning, not a single car out on the streets except me, and there are people out standing on their roofs, all of them looking up at the sky! After seeing maybe 6 or 7, I broke out in a cold sweat and just stared straight forward, trying not to look at them any more while I finished my drive home. I mentioned it at work the next day, someone mentioned maybe a meteor shower got people out to see it, but nothing was written in the newspaper. To this day, I have no idea what that was all about."
"My mother always told me to close my window blinds as a kid before i went to sleep.I usually remembered but one night i forgot. I woke up in the middle of the night to an old man staring through my window, smiling. We stared at each other for like 10 seconds.I calmly got out of bed and walked to my mom's room. On the way there,I passed the living room and saw someone walking past our living room windows. I went to sleep in her bed and never brought it up."
The Woods Are Always A Bad Idea
"About 5 years ago, a few buddies and I went camping in Tennessee. We were on mountain bikes so we were able to get way far out from civilization and set up camp in the middle of the woods. This was not a camping area, so we didn't run into any other people, and we were so far away from anything we didn't expect to. We all went to sleep without incident and it was as dark as dark can be outside with clouds blocking the moon. After being asleep for a couple of hours I heard leaves crunching probably about 20 feet from our tent."
"It was obviously footsteps. I then noticed a little bit of light shining on the tent from what I assume was a flashlight. Then I hear two men whispering. Then I hear "ya'll asleep in there?" My instinct was to remain completely silent and I didn't make a sound. Eventually I heard more footsteps heading away from the tent until eventually I heard nothing again. Needless to say I got absolutely no sleep after that and I woke my buddies up about ten minutes later to tell them. In the morning there was no sign of anybody, and we left quickly. Never figured it out."
Now You See Them...
"Halloween 2019: Me and my friends go to my best friend’s house and decide to play hide and seek in his backyard, cue creepy stuff. We play the first few rounds without a problem. Some of the guys were drunk and hiding in ridiculous places (crouching behind a chair, laying along the fence, etc.) and we laugh about it. We start the third round and suddenly we hear this horrible shriek and we all jump out of our hiding spots and look at what it came from. I was this huge figure which had 2 legs and 2 arms. It was about 7 foot and had some sort of futuristic armor on. As soon as I saw that we were looking at it I turned around and sprinted a very, very fast pace and opened the gate which led to my friends in ground pool, and took a huge jump which put it 10-20 feet in the air and suddenly for a second it looked back at us still floating in mid air, floated for about 10 more seconds and then disappeared with a huge cracking noise. My friends and I ran inside his house, locked every window, door, and possible entrance and ran into his room upstairs and we all didn’t sleep and didn’t come out of the room until noon on November 1st. When we looked into the backyard, there was no sign of anything that we left there, it all just vanished. We still talk about it occasionally and wonder what it could’ve been."
– Deleted User
"I was 21 and just moved to a college town living in my own. I noticed my AC unit was being turned off during the day. I thought maybe it was maintenance or a faulty breaker. So I talked to property management, they couldn't figure it out. I brushed it off."
"Then I started coming home and there was dishes I didn't remember leaving in the sink. A cereal bowl, a fork. I had a brain tumor so I was concerned my memory was getting really bad."
"Then one day while I was in the shower, I thought I heard a man downstairs. I turned off my shower, froze, and grabbed a razor. I realized the door had no locks so I braced myself against the sink and door. I held my breath and listened. I frantically texted my high school friend who lived in the unit next door."
"When I heard his voice, I flew downstairs and he was staring at ammunition on my carpet. Just bullets, scattered everywhere."
"And this began the three year saga of my stalker and we made the first of multiple police calls."
"So while not traditionally creepy, those bullets made my skin crawl and heart sink. I knew someone wanted to hurt me and had been watching me."
It's In The Eyes
"When I was a kid, I had the weirdest experiences. Things that I saw really made no fuckin' sense, and I had no idea why."
"The scariest thing, though, happened when I was about to fall asleep. I had been living with the feeling that there were people in my room while I slept for the longest time, but I got used to it. This night, however, I wasn't really feeling it. I dunno if it's just my brain being weird, or-"
"And then it happens. For a sec, in a half-dream-half-awake state, I see, just.. eyes. Literally just a pair of eyes in the dark. Then I heard the mental equivalent of violent, pained screaming. It was loud. Like, the kind of loud that leaves your ears ringing. I fell out of my bed, screamed for my parents, had some warm milk, and went back to sleep. Things like that haven't happened since."
"I was speeding down this dead end road to get to the house i was house sitting (by speeding i mean 40 in a 35) and this dude runs out in the road and starts screaming at me."
"I swerve around him and park behind the house, hidden from the road. While I'm getting out i hear a truck fly down the road and the man was walking around the cul de sac SCREAMING and slamming doors."
"After i snuck in the house, i locked up everything and laid down."
"Weeks later the owners were telling me about their crazy neighbor who is quick to pull out his gun in arguments and if people use his driveway to turn around in."
I" know that's a lot and it probably sounds stupid, but i was scared."
He's Still Out There Somewhere
"I don't have a lot of interesting stories about creepy things that have happened to me but my mom has an extremely creepy story."
"This was in upstate New York and happened when my mom was 22. Her and her friend had been sitting at the bottom of a big hill (picture just a long trail in the woods and a big road going up and at the bottom is a nice area to sit and talk) having conversations (this was the early 90s) when they notice a man hiding in the brush to the side of the road watching them they immediately realize that this man is doing un-holy things with his dong while watching them my mother immediately tells her friend about what this man is doing and to not freak out. So my mom makes a decision that they need to run the opposite direction of the creepy man he immediately starts sprinting after them. Now i know that this sounds almost too perfect I know, I know but my moms boyfriend was driving the road at the time with his friend and sees my mom running down the hill now i have to assume that when the creeper saw the car he gave up but my mom told her (ex) boyfriend what happened like the natural badass he was (?) he goes to pop his trunk and pulls out a baseball bat and proceeds to go hunt down the man unfortunately he never found them obviously a police report was made but they never found the man and they never dealt with him again"
Someone's In The House
"I got a short one from a while back, maybe 8 years ago. At the time my wife was pregnant, two kids were in the living room with us and 2 kids were upstairs in their bedroom with the door closed. The oldest in the room with us went to microwave something and accidentally turned in the gas stove without lighting it. A half hour later we realize what happened so I turn it off and open some windows. A few minutes later the kids from upstairs run down screaming and crying because someone was banging on their door. They thought it was me messing with them at first so we laughed it off. Well, at first, until they said they saw black boots and heard heavy steps in the hallway. I was downstairs the entire time. Right after they finished telling their story the lid to the hamper came flying down the steps. No windows were open up there and there was never any circulation through the house. We left for a while to calm them down"
"When I was 16 my parents got a divorce and I went through the typical angst, part of it was firmly denouncing religion and anything not explained by science. My mom, sister and I moved into a creepy old house where they both complained of paranormal instances, which I was quick to dismiss. I came home from a track meet around 7:30 pm on a Friday. When I came in I heard my sister hysterically laughing with her signature snort."
"I asked her "what's so funny Taylor" and while barely speaking through the laughing and snorting she replied "just come up here, it's hilarious". I slowly walk up the creaky steps as I listen to her laugh the entire time. She kept saying "you gotta see this, come up here". When I opened the door it was pitch black and she was nowhere to be found. Then I realized when I drove into the driveway there were no other cars, I was home alone. I then remembered my mom and sister had gone to tour colleges that weekend."
"I got out of there ASAP. I now believe I know nothing about this world."
How Scary Is It To Screw In A Lightbulb?
"This is a really fucked yo story so I’m 13 and I think this happened when I was still 12 and I was up late one night and when I went to bed it’s about 2 am at this point I hear talking outside my door and I know it ain’t my parents Becuase it would been more soft and next think I know I hear foot step and see a hand unscrew my light bulb Becuase it was still on a little bit Becuase on died and a hand just reaches up and unscrews in and I got it on video but it won’t let me put the video on here"
Republicans In My Passenger Seat
"I was dropping off a rider in NJ from Manhattan and decided to pick up a couple of rides near Newark. A guy gets in my car with his family and sits in the front seat. He then turns my way and doesn't talk for like 2-3 minutes. I'm now officially creeped out and start thinking I should move a little faster. Then he starts to ask where I'm from. I'm instantly even more on alert and say Brooklyn. He says "no where are you originally from" and I'm like dude Brooklyn."
"He starts getting agitated and asks where are your parents from and I'm like Brooklyn. Then he screams dude where are they originally from and I'm now officially terrified. His daughter starts screaming in the back telling him to stop cause he's scaring me and to be honest, I lost all control and may have started going through reds. Not once did I even think about looking in his direction. Made a 15 minute ride in like 6 minutes and not once was I stupid enough to mention that my family originally came from Pakistan. He started yelling at his family next and l began to regret taking rides in NJ. I was trapped in a box with a maniac and kept expecting a knife or a gun to pop into his hands any second. I was pretty happy when I pulled into a gated building and the police was there. I dropped him off, turned off the app and drove all the way back to the city without a rider. Lesson learned, no more driving in NJ."
Evil and Invisible
"i was walking my very old, deaf, blind dog on his poop walk on a quiet street, going very slow. quiet street, 5 pm. an unseen force shoved me on my right shoulder, pushing me to my knees. in that exchange i broke a finger and sprained an ankle. i uprighted my self, remained on my knees, looked behind me and saw nothing. a second, more powerful shove pushed me on the ground and my arm broke in two places. my dog ran off and i was alone on the road until i rolled over and made it to a neighbor's. i have the pins in my arm to prove it."
"When I was five years old I had a nightmare. In that nightmare there was a man, and he just stood there doing nothing but repeatedly saying "You won't wake up" over and over. I was scared to the point I couldn't move. When I woke up from the nightmare, I could still see and hear my dream. He was laughing at me. I forcefully opened my eyes with my hands but I couldn't get him out of my head. I was so frightened I was about to cry. I got up from my bed and felt my way to the kitchen where my mum was making breakfast."
"I tugged on her shirt but and asked her to help me but she just said "Just open your eyes." I tried to show her my eyes were open. "They are!" But she didn't turn around and ignored me. Well, if mom wasn't going to help me, then I was. I thought if I went back to sleep I could fight this laughing man for my freedom, so I went back to bed and closed my eyes. And eventually the man and his laughing faded as I counted down from ten. Immediately I ran back out to mum, just to make sure that what happened was actually real but she just laughed and ignored me again. To this day I have never felt so betrayed by someone."
Waking A Demon
"I walked with my friend through some street as we usually did that then. We had similar topic of conversation as it is of this question. We were talking about some house in which he was in with our mutual friend. That mutual friend told him it was haunted but my friend would not believe it so they went to check it out. They settled in living room of the house. As they sat, lightbulb flickered. They were little freaked out but that could be explainable, building was abandoned and lightbulb could be little broken. So they went to the basement. Basically there was written 666 on the wall and there waa blood everywhere. Baby toys were scattered on the floor, lamp was broken and lightbulb flickered. They went to the hall, freaked out obviously, they started screaming and cursing. In every room in the house was the sound of rustling, breaking and crashing. As they opened the door, the lightbulb broke, leaving the house in darkness (windows were sealed of with wooden planks). Went they closed the door and went out, there could be heard scratching and rustling of the door. So lets get back on my friend and I walking, as we were walking beside that house, all my hairs on my body have risen, scream tore the air, and rustling started. We sprinted across the street straight to our homes. I think my friend have awoken a demon."
"The scariest thing I've ever encountered was I was mowing the lawn around 9PM when I was 11. I remember the lawn mower kept randomly sputtering as if it was going to shut off but wouldn't completely die. I checked the gas at least 3 times to see if that was the problem. When it finally just completely made a clunk and shut off. At the exact moment the sound could no longer be heard there was a large cracking sound behind me."
"Come to find out a few weeks later there had been a man who was watching us from the fern tree behind our house. There were only 2 windows in view from that side of the house. The first one was ground level and you could see the backdoor, kitchen, living room and if my mom's door was open her room. The second one you could only see if there were lights on upstairs. If the lights were on upstairs it meant us kids were awake. The police even found a sheet of plywood in the tree for him to sit on and it was believed he'd sit there for hours on end. We never found out what his intentions were but he'd just been watching everything about us."
"This happened very recently. I was driving east on the 91 freeway (CA) two days ago (31st) I saw a woman who was about to jump off of an overpass. As I drove past, it was so nerve wracking to see her up there. Then I got back on the freeway and the westbound traffic was backed up for several exits. I kept seeing people in stand still traffic, getting out of their cars."
"Googled it later and she was detained and is safe. Thank god."
"A few years ago, when I was at college, I was heading back to my apartment building after class. It was still early evening and the sun was still setting so it wasn't like it was dark and gloomy or anything, and I got dropped off by my school's shuttle system so I felt relatively safe. But while I was walking down the sidewalk I saw a man in jeans and big sweater round the corner of my building. The hoodie was up and over his face so I couldn't make it out and he didn't look, to me, like a college student. The build looked more for a 30/40 year old and there was no one else around but us two."
"But the second he came into my line of vision my body went cold, my heart started racing and literally every single hair on my body stood up. I quickened my pace to my door but that was what caught his attention. He turned right to me and began speed walking, almost running, right at me and I was so scared I thought I would freeze. Luckily, I had my key already out and I flew inside, bolted the door and closed all the blinds. I called public safety and they sent out a patrol car but it took me forever to calm down. What sucked even more was that I was all alone that night. It was a feeling I've never felt again (knock on wood) but one I won't ever forget. I'm grateful I was lucky!"
Not A Pupper
"I was walking home from school one day and I saw a coyote about 20-30 feet from where I was standing. Originally, it looked like a little husky so I whistled to it. It made a loud snarling noise and ran away back into the woods. I didn't give it much thought until later that night on the local news the coyote was said to be rabid and attacking other dogs in the neighborhood. The story itself isn't that scary it's just the thought that what if it came to me when I whistled at it and attacked me is frightening"
"I was out by myself around 12am and a scary guy followed me home and stayed outside my windows until I decided to call the cops. They said no one was there when the did a sweep of my land. I went to bed and woke up around 5am. The creepy dude was just staring into my bedroom looking at my bed, I stared right back at him and made sure to keep my eyes on him. I texted my neighbour to call the cops. I left my room and heard my window break so I went into the bathroom because the was the safest place around the time. I heard the cop cars and his foot steps. I decided to fight this guy because, it was either sit down and cry in the bath tub like a little bitch or fight. So I got my broom and opened the door. I looked around for a little and found him. He charged right at me and gave me a bloody nose, I him multiple times with my broom until the cops came. They said it was self defence and said nothing of it. After that night, I've never been out past 10pm alone."
"If I could go back, I should have used my plunger."
The Bored Ghost
"Ok, this one I cannot explain. It happened when I was between 8-10."
"I used to get home from school long before my mum got home from work. It wasn't a big deal. I'd grab a snack and sit myself in front of the TV. This happened before we got Sky TV and kept the TV and Sky box plugged in all the time. My mum was terrified of electronics getting fried by lightning so she never left anything plugged in. I got home from school and my usual routine was to lock the house back up and turn the TV on. This afternoon I really, really needed to pee, the TV was unplugged so instead of turning it on first, I ran upstairs and with the door open I used the toilet. About half way through my TV comes on, the sound on full blast. I just froze. I could see down the stairs from where I was and nothing was moving. I finish up and eventually pluck up the courage to sneak back downstairs. No one was down there, but the TV was now plugged in and it was freaking loud. There was no way that could have happened. I turned it down and checked the house. It was still locked up tight, no one else was inside. I just went back to my usual routine and never brought it up to anyone. Now, even if the TV was on standby, which it 100% wasn't, we didn't have a remote for it so it couldn't have been that. The sound turning itself all the way up was especially weird."
"Once, I was sleeping over at my friends. We were near the back with the trampoline, we went in witj blankets and stuff, it was all good. As we were there, my friends female cousins (about 8-9) said something was in the woods. Me, being the smart yet exhausted kid i were, would shine my flashlight into the tree line. Nothing. Then, after turning it off and about to walk back, i hear a screech. We ran like hell, back into the house and talking to my friends parents. They heard it, which is why they were about to come outside. We have no clue what it is, even now."
We are certainly glad these didn't happen to us. And we may sleep with the lights on.
Do you have similar stories? Share them in the comment section below!
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Reddit user OmarBessa asked: 'Redditors who have gotten genetic tests, what's the weirdest thing you learnt from your DNA?'
At the end of the last century DNA laboratory companies began to offer direct-to-consumer home DNA test kits.
According to The Center for Genetics and Society, as of November 2023 more than 26 million people have taken an at-home ancestry DNA test.
These tests have helped people find and reunite with long lost family members. However not all revelations were well met.
Unknown ancestry was discovered.
Infidelity and secrets and lies were also exposed by these tests which led to strife in some families.
Reddit user OmarBessa asked:
"Redditors who have gotten genetic tests, what's the weirdest thing you learnt from your DNA?"
"So my dad is from the Philippines and my brothers and I all assumed our whole lives we are half Filipino and half Polish/German from my mom. Even my brothers married Filipino women and are very much into the family culture."
"Anyway I’m the only one who did the dna test and it came back we are only a 1/4 Filipino."
"There’s a mix—1% Japanese, 1% South American, etc...—but the big surprise was our missing 1/4 was Iranian/Romanian."
"My brothers flat out refuse to believe it."
"Learned that I (White) had a 100% Nigerian ancestor around 130 years ago. Now I want to dig deeper to find out who it was!"
"What’s funny is that I spent a gap year in Nigeria as a teenager, and I love the culture and food and still have a lot of Nigerian friends."
"It’s still a big part of my life."
"For 29 years, it was assumed that my dad who raised me was not my biological father, that I was the product of an affair my mother was having."
"I came out with blond hair, freckles and blue eyes. A stark difference to my tanned, dark featured dad."
"My dad chose to raise me as his own anyways, refusing paternity tests. I was never made to feel like I wasn't his."
"I took 23&Me simply out of curiosity and found out that he is in fact my biological father."
"My dad has told me he didn't want to know the results either way, but I let it slip showing my sister's the app one time at dinner."
"He didn't react, but I got an extra big bear hug getting on the train to leave that night."
"It was assumed when my mom found out she was pregnant that the pregnancy was the product of the affair. My features only solidified that assumption."
"He was already raising my mom's first daughter as his own, who he'd met when she was 2 and told my mom he wanted to keep raising the kids together. They got married and he adopted her a few months after I was born."
She was also treated so much as his that I didn't even know she was adopted by him until I was a teenager."
"My parents stayed together for 14 years, and to this day are still best friends."
"As an adult, my father-in-law found out his mother was actually his grandmother and his older sister was actually his mom."
"Things were different in the late 30's."
"I think this is quite common, especially when the real mother is still very young and in school when they get pregnant."
"The grandparents will adopt the baby and say they’re the mum’s sister/brother, and so the mum can continue their life as normal as possible."
"The daughter I adopted and I are actually distantly related!"
"As an adoptee who is considering doing the DNA thing, this intrigues me."
"My brother (also adopted, not a blood related sibling to me) did the DNA thing and found his birth family! I got to meet two of his half siblings. It was fascinating seeing 'nature vs nurture' in real time."
"There were certain mannerisms, etc... that all three of them did, and then other things my brother did that are definitely from the family we were raised in."
"Really cool to watch."
"Not me but my grandma got a DNA test done because she was sold as a baby—this happened back in the 30s (Depression Era, USA)—and never knew her biological parents, so a family member urged her to do it so we could maybe find them."
"We found both sides—a half-sister from her bio mom and a half-brother from her bio dad."
"Although it was kinda weird to realize we have family close by (only 20 miles away in one case), it was much weirder for the bio families to discover my grandma’s existence, since neither side had anything to do with the other."
"Her bio mom and bio dad seem to have crossed paths at some point in the same city. He was a married man, she was an older teen. Not sure if it was a one night stand or whatever but her bio mom was pregnant as a result of that night."
"At some point in her pregnancy, she checked into a home/hospital for pregnant unwed teen mothers (using a fake name). The bio mom was told the home would find homes for the babies, so she delivered and left."
"Bio mom went on to marry and have her own family, while bio dad likely never knew of the situation."
"As it would turn out, the home was not adopting out babies, rather selling them. Since my grandma was blonde and blue eyed she was bought quickly for a higher price by a woman."
"My grandma didn’t know until her teens that she was sold."
"My grandparents—they were married at the time—had a biological son they gave up for adoption before my mother was born and never told any of us about."
"Turns out some of the extended family knew my grandma had been pregnant before my mom but kept it a secret."
"If it was during the great depression in the US it was sadly something that happened. Not even just with babies."
"Some families had to give away their children or some of their children (I can't imagine the trauma for everyone involved) because they couldn't afford to feed themselves, let alone a child."
"My husband's grandmother told me about family members she knew who had to find new families for their children or even send them to live in an orphanage where they would at least be fed.
"Sometimes they were able to get the kids back after finances improved but not always."
"My ancestry is exactly what I grew up being told, I have several family members who were really into genealogy".
"But I found out I have a first cousin we didn't know existed."
"Apparently, my uncle had gotten married and had a son no one knew about when he was 19 and stationed across the country that he bailed on."
"Ends up my bio dad was quite the dabbler."
"None of his relatives were surprised I existed, just that I was the only stray kid that did (so far). I keep an eye on my results for any other mystery siblings!"
"I told my new half siblings if I ever went to a family reunion I'd show up in a shirt that said 'Spare Parts' or 'I'm your plot twist'."
Solving Unsolved Mysteries
"I had the same suspicions when I took my test. Turns out it was my grandmother instead with the secret babies she put up for adoption."
"Didn’t find out until 6 years after she passed away so we’re never getting answers as to what happened."
"Also got a surprise contact by the police, as I was a high match to a John Doe that was found drowned on the shores of Lake Superior in 1991."
"That was a fun family tree rabbit hole to dive down. Turned out to be a half 1st cousin from my grandmother’s firstborn."
"The local police were great about informing me and communicating. The case was assigned to them by the provincial police who were clearing out thousands of cold cases."
"I was also very excited to assist because I’d done a rather in-depth family tree about a decade prior."
"They have a team of forensic genealogists, most of them on a volunteer basis, and they were incredibly good at finding information. A lot of it was birth/marriage records and working off random dna matches to try and figure out where the Doe related to the match."
"In my case, I was a 422cm match to the deceased so we looked from my maternal great-grandparents on down."
"I assisted myself on a couple of cases afterwards, all just unidentified bodies found in water or bush, nothing criminal that would require clearance."
"To be honest, I felt a little morbid because of how interested I was in the process. I had to temper my enthusiasm when responding to the police initially."
I didn’t know the person, I had zero attachment to them and it was more of a scientific interest."
"It wasn’t until weeks later when I realized how close of a relation it was that it hit me. That plus he was likely murdered made me feel bad about my earlier enthusiasm."
"But in the cases I volunteered on, those people were loved and missed."
"One fella was a cousin of a beloved NHL enforcer that passed away a year before and I recognized the names of the immediate family we had to contact. They still had Facebook groups dedicated to searching for him with posts until the day before we contacted them."
"I’m sure there’s a relief at having answers but grief at the loss being confirmed."
More and more people are exploring their roots through DNA testing.
Have you taken a test? What was your DNA revelation?
Content Warning: Discussions of Addiction
We've all heard of strange, inedible things that people have made a habit of eating, like paper or glue. Unfortunately, there are instances where eating these things works more like an addiction than a dietary choice.
There are a lot of other things that people might become addicted to, too, that have nothing to do with food, but which also are not the usual culprits for addiction.
If someone that we know is addicted to something unusual and isn't hiding it the same way that someone addicted to drugs might, it can be a really strange experience to witness.
Curious about others' experiences, Redditor JARClol asked:
"What is the weirdest thing you are or saw someone addicted to?"
"I used to know a girl who was addicted to eating those little polystyrene chips that are used for packaging."
"She always had a bag of them with her. The noise she made when she was munching on them used to set my teeth on edge."
"Don't tell her about the biodegradable ones (which actually taste nutty)."
A Hairy Situation
"A roommate in college was addicted to hair. She collected hair and made hair people. She would use the community vacuum cleaner, take out the hair, wash it, and make hair people."
"She would also go to salons asking for the cut hair 'for her family’s garden' and then proceed to make hair people."
"She had hundreds of them with names and stories about them."
"I kept my hairbrush locked up after it was cleaned out the first time."
Pen and Ink
"Eating markers, like the tube of it. Inside the casing. I told his mother and her reply was, 'Oh, he's doing it again,' like... Again? Toxic ink? Again? I don't mean licking it. I mean chewing. Black ink in saliva and swallowing the ink-soaked sponge."
"I knew a dude in high school who ate the ink from pens. Every class, gnawing on a pen, eventually breaking it open then sucking on it like a straw. He regularly would be drooling ink. I left that school sophomore year, and I wonder whatever happened to Abe."
"Abe? Was his last name LINKoln?"
The Strawberry Milk Fan
"I used to work with a girl who would just chug liters of strawberry milk. Every time I went to the toilet after her it stank of milk. She was eventually diagnosed with Type-Two Diabetes and gave up the milk… briefly."
"Yeah, I'm not surprised. I'm Type-Two, and strawberry milk usually has more sugar in it than chocolate milk. The smaller-sized cartons you get at lunch usually have 22 to 40 grams of sugar in them and a s**tton of sodium (no, I'm not joking), so a liter would have hundreds of grams in it."
"I got it after 23 years of poor choices and family medical history. She got it by decimating her pancreas and s**tting a machine gun."
"And you said briefly, meaning she's probably worse off. Like, I still have sugar, but I try and have less of it. I f**k up a lot because it's hard, but f**k, if she went back to drinking liters of it, I wouldn't be surprised if she's had some other issues."
Just a Taste
"My best friend used to eat fabric softener in high school. She wouldn't have huge mouthfuls or gulps; she would take just enough to coat her tongue."
"She would keep bottles of it hidden around her room so she could have a taste whenever the mood struck her. I love her to death, but she’s a strange one, lol (laughing out loud)."
Weren't We All?
"I used to be addicted to Candy Crush back in the day. After running out of five lives, I couldn't wait for them to be available so I would forward my clock just to be able to play. My phone was set to the year 2030ish by the time I stopped playing."
"Wow. You time traveled. That's a loophole though, isn't it? You never had to pay for fake things."
Just After a Few Beers
"Not so much addicted but I had a friend in college that would huff the fluid in his zippo lighter when he was really drunk."
"Treavor wasn’t allowed to have his lighter after a few beers."
"I had a good friend in high school who had asthma who’d take hits off his inhaler, all day long. We’d be talking and he’d just casually whip it out whenever and take a hit. Ended up going to bed a couple of years after we graduated and never woke up."
"I'm sorry. He probably f**ked his heart up. I hate taking my inhaler. It makes my heart race and makes me shake and feel like s**t."
"Growing up, I used to take two Albuterol vials in my slow, old 90s nebulizer during asthma episodes. That thing was a TANK."
"I got a brand-spankin' new travel nebulizer in college and remember that first time I used two vials with it. I thought I was having a heart attack. That thing is POWERFUL and I wasn't expecting it. Two vials were far too strong and had me shaking for over an hour."
"I still have it to this day, and when I take it once a year or so for a flare-up, even one vial still makes me shake a bit."
The Truth Behind the Problem
"I visited Nairobi for work around 2000 and the street kids all walked around with a small bottle of glue stuck to their upper lip so they were basically sniffing glue continually. It was extremely sad."
"Probably something similar here in the Philippines. Homeless street kids sniff a plastic bag with a bit of contact cement in it to get rid of/to numb the hunger sensation. Not an addiction but a survival tactic… in my opinion."
"Same in Zambian. Not stuck to their lip but carried and sniffed when needed. It was apparently to numb the body from feeling the cold in winter. Painfully sad."
Never Underestimate Soda
"My first-ever girlfriend was genuinely addicted to Coca-Cola (self-admitted). She would have a glass as soon as she woke up and drink it all day."
"The one or two times I was there when her family had run out of it, she was irritable, anxious, and so grumpy until she was able to get down to the store to buy more."
"Strangely, it wasn't even the caffeine or sugar she was addicted to, because having a coffee or a different type of soda wasn't enough to ease her withdrawal symptoms."
"I had a friend who slept with a cooler of Diet Pepsi next to the bed. He had a large Slurpee cup that was always full, no matter where he was."
"We did a five-day offshore fishing trip. He ran out late on day four."
"As we pulled the boat into the dock, he literally ran and jumped onto the dock and raced to the soda machine at the far end."
That's One Way to Use It
"My Spanish teacher was addicted to Vix VapoRub! Not to use it traditionally, though."
"She was eating it."
"Apparently, she knows that it's not a secret, because she ate it using a tongue depressor right in front of us, during the first week of school. I guess she figured we couldn't poke fun at her if she owned it."
"She literally demonstrated! She said her grandfather taught her and she likes the consistency/overwhelming scent."
"I can't imagine it's good for her."
Live to Game
"Rocket League. I'm not even joking. The guy was in his 20s and playing up to eight hours a day."
"He used to be super social and became a hermit pretty much for seven years. He would pretend to be sick at work so he could play three days straight."
"He lost his whole social life. He spent New Year's every one of those years sitting in a dark room with windows covered, playing that game."
"I tried to get him to stop but never worked."
"I used to be addicted to chewing on ice, or maybe obsessed. I would bring a cup full of crushed ice with me everywhere. When I went to the beach, I would just bring a bag of ice from the gas station and sit and eat it."
"I stopped for ages and then became temporarily obsessed again during one of my pregnancies. I was checked for vitamin deficiencies both times but nothing came up."
The Use of Chapstick
"I'm addicted to chapstick. I can't go more than three hours without applying it."
"I think my lips are relying on the chapstick now because they get dry so quickly. And it feels like nails on a chalkboard when they do, I can't focus on anything else besides my lips being dry until I get some chapstick, lol (laughing out loud)."
"Here’s a pro tip someone told me: before you put chapstick on wet your lips so there’s actual moisture to lock in."
"I also find Vaseline is way cheaper and way more effective. I use it once in the morning and once before bed and I’ve gotten chapped lips like five times in the last seven years."
An Interesting Choice!
"Judge Judy. And it was me. My boyfriend introduced me to the show in my mid-thirties and I binged it on YouTube, listening to it whilst working in our warehouse/driving/cleaning/anything."
"Six years later, if I have a task that I really need to get into productive mode for, I put her on and my brain shifts gears."
"At one point, it felt weird to work without her voice in the background yelling at people. She’s like my white noise. She’s my default soundtrack."
These accounts were honestly fascinating, and in some causes haunting, to read.
It just goes to show that, first of all, we all like different things, and second of all, you never know what is going to qualify as "too much of a good thing" for one person compared to someone else.
Those who work in different fields all have their respective anecdotes that are sure to keep listeners engaged.
But certain jobs that keep employees away from land are sure to have the most intriguing stories to share.
Seafarers shared their unique experiences bordering on hair-raising phenomena when Redditor tylo144 asked:
"For those who have careers that keep them out at sea for long periods of time, what is the creepiest thing you’ve seen out in the water?"
Mariners shared their wildest stories from their time out at sea.
"Not so much what I saw but what I experienced. I was once underway in the Gulf of Alaska during a November gale. Waves were up to 35 feet with some rollers hitting 45. An uncommon occurrence on the diesel electric ship I was on was a cyclo-converter tripping. When this happened the ship would temporarily completely lose power and propulsion until some electricians could reset everything. This happened during that gale. I simply can’t explain how strange it is for the boat you’re on to all of a sudden go so quiet, that you can clearly hear waves slapping the ship and metal bending and flexing. Knowing you’re completely at the mercy of the sea. Knowing that if the ship lost its bearing and went beam to there was a real possibility of capsizing. It’s easy to forget when you’re at sea that the only thing keeping you alive is a bunch of steel welded together. At that moment I was fully aware and it humbled me. Thankfully we trained frequently for this and had everything fired back up relatively quickly."
"Another time I recall was when the ship took a rogue wave. They are absolutely real and I believe they account for a massive number of shipwrecks. It was late at night and I was on the bridge. We were passing through a storm and we’re taking the waves off the bow with no visibility. As the ship moves there’s normally a pretty standard pattern. You ride up a wave for a bit and then you fall down the wave for a bit. Well we started riding up a wave and got to the point where we should have been starting or ride down…but we just kept climbing and climbing. And then it happened. We started our ride down the back of this massive wave. All of us braced ourselves and tried to find something to hold on to but we all fell to the deck any way. Anything that wasn’t secured for sea fell down all around us. Manuals, tables, computers, printers, you name it. Our captain who was sleeping called up to the bridge asking if we hit something. It woke the entire crew up. Rogue waves are real, and they’re terrifying. I can’t imagine being in a smaller boat or taking one of them broadside."
Series Of Bizarre Events
"I was in the US Navy for about 10 years, and have 10s of thousands of miles at sea in an aircraft carrier. Countless nights on the flight deck in the middle of the night and middle of the ocean..."
"Creepiest: A HUGE patch of the ocean glowing. Like nuclear waste in the Simpsons glowing. I've seen bioluminescent algae of a few kinds and this was nothing like it. I've never seen anything like it before or since."
"Weirdest thing: hundreds of mile out to sea from land and there was a MASSIVE fire on the water. It was like the top of a gas refinery, but on the water with nothing under it but water. Flame going a few stories into the air."
"Funniest: 2 flying fish collide mid-air. I was smoking when we were in the Persian Gulf and saw the fish fly from a pretty far distance towards each other. I remember thinking 'there's no f'kin way they're going to hit' them SPLAT SPLASH! I was in tears laughing but no one saw it. Everyone just thought I was a weirdo, but I got to see a miracle of nature lol"
"Some 20 years ago..."
"On the MV Explorer (since sunk) down near the Antarctic circle, sailing around the 'bergs and occasionally making landfall..."
"We rounded into a small bay area, and there, amongst the ice and coast was an unmarked sailing yacht. Which is odd as generally yachts have some identifying markings on them."
"To add to it, they didn't respond to any radio contact, and whilst I wasn't privy to the conversation (and it was a long time ago), some crew went across via Zodiac and were refused boarding."
"So basically a yacht, not a particularly large one, that was unmarked was hanging around in the inhospitable waters of the Antarctic and didn't want any help or contact."
These Redditors have fearlessly plunged into darkness.
"I used to be an oilfield diver in the Gulf of Mexico. I'd say about 80% of the dives I logged were at night. Mostly 500 ft and under DSV's."
"It's very eerie feeling sitting on the downline doing in water decompression in the middle of night. I'd always ask topside to turn off my headlight."
"Like a worm on a hook. Just bobbing in the darkness."
A Dark Calm
"Not even nearly as extreme as your story but it evoked a memory, I did a scuba diving open water course and then did the advanced course which included a night dive in a freshwater lake."
"I was only 5m underwater, pitch black darkness with two other guys, we were on a platform and we could either face the dam wall or the open water, and I turned to the open water while the other guys were behind me, I turned off my light (we did have little lights on our backs)"
"Just the deepest, calmest dark I’ve ever felt and seen. Not a single source of light anywhere, just immense darkness. Still remember that feeling and it was like 15 years ago"
Things get more interesting.
"The bioluminescent animals (or whatever they are) in the water is pretty amazing. Our toilet would fill up with seawater and if you took a piss in it in the middle of the night it would agitate the water and it would glow sometimes."
"Ominous Red Snow Angel"
"Always love the bio-luminescence flickering around the hull at night. They're almost like a cushion of little stars guiding you safely along. On those really dark, moonless nights, I'd almost beg for them to arrive."
"I sailed 70ft yacht around the world a few years back. Southern Ocean, Cape Horn, Good Hope, Roaring Forties, Furious Fifties, two equatorial crossings; the full deal. Plenty of terrifying moments, boring moments, funny moments and beautiful moments."
"A creepy moment that is burned into my memory involved a near catastrophe halfway between NZ and Cape Horn. We ended up hitting really bad weather and absolutely huge seas - 50ft swells with massive troughs in between. We were running with the swells for days as they grew, skidding down them like a bloated surfboard, always worrying that the next wave would break behind us and roll us over."
"At night it's pitch black down there in bad weather - the sky and sea just form a huge black mass. The most terrifying thing is the sound of an invisible wave breaking behind you. At night, you run red light to preserve night vision, so there's basically just an eerie red glow emanating from below deck."
"At about two in the morning, I was at the helm when a monster wave broke directly over the back of us without a seconds warning. Time slowed down like it does in those moments, and the last thing I saw was my own silhouette in the wall of water, lit up like an ominous red snow angel - and then nothing but cold blackness as the boat sunk into the sea."
"Fortunately, she popped straight back up like a cork after a few eternal seconds - almost like a submarine surfacing - and we were still in one piece. Still cant forget that glowing red apparition of myself though. The memory of it has woken me up in a cold sweat more than once."
Coming Up For Air
"Somewhere in the Atlantic, nice cold as f**k night, decided to step out and look at stars. About ten minutes on and a boats mast pops up, sits there a few minutes and then back under. No alarms, nothing. Just some sub boys getting a bit of late night o2 in the middle of nowhere next to some friends."
When I worked on cruise ships, I was always captivated by the green flash on the horizon.
The optical phenomenon occurs just as the sun goes down or before sunrise, with the tip of the sun barely visible.
It emits a flash of green light that I found absolutely thrilling to witness every time.
It's not necessarily creepy, but still a wonder for sure.
No matter how long ago we saw it, there are some scenes or images from movies that still send shivers down our spine or keep us awake at night to this very day.
Pennywise appearing in the sewer in It, Janet Leigh surprised in the shower in Psycho, Freddy Kreuger's tongue popping out of the telephone in A Nightmare on Elm Street.
Of course, some of the scariest, most disturbing, or most emotionally traumatizing scenes from films might have been featured in films outside of the horror genre.
Even more shockingly, some of these films were primarily marketed towards children!
Redditor alina_love was curious to hear which non-horror films the Reddit community saw as children still send shivers down their spines today, leading them to ask:
"What's a non horror movie that traumatized you as a kid?"
It Was Tim Burton, After All...
"'Pee Wee's big adventure'."
"Large Marge scared the crap out of little me."
"I was even scared of the fortune teller."- BlueStarrSilver·
With A Title Like "Temple Of Doom"...
"'Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom'."
"The scene where the guy gets his heart ripped out traumatized me for years."- Pbhf
That Funeral Scene Though...
"Fear of death, fear of losing a friend, fear of bees, fear of puberty."- heidismilesmacaulay culkin kiss GIFGiphy
Jurassic Park's Got Nothing On This...
"'The Land Before Time'."
"Watching Little Foot’s mother die was awful."- HourglassSass
He'll Always Regret Not Bringing Her To The Museum...
"'Bridge to Terabithia'."- jumpstart-the-end
"Everything goes so well and it falls apart SO FAST and your left absolutely traumatized."- VortexDestroyer99
The Reason People Hold On To Their Appliances For As Long As They Do...
"The Brave Little Toaster'."- Catgurl
"The junkyard scene alone was responsible for so many nightmares."- ManChildMusicianbrave little toaster animation GIF by Coolidge Corner TheatreGiphy
And Let's Not Forget The Coachman's Smile...
"Disney’s version of 'Pinocchio'."
"The scene where kids are turned into donkeys and kept on the island and then resold was f*cking weird."
"You felt bad for that bully kid after he looked sad and nobody understood what he said because he was a donkey."- earnestlikehemingway
Few Things More Sad And Scary Than Deforestation
"'Ferngully: The Last Rainforest'."
"That evil tree scared me so bad."- slutsdotnet
Anything But "Truly Scrumptious"...
"The 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang' Childcatcher guy!"
"I'm still scared of him!"- Jet_Maypenchild GIFGiphy
Offing Children One By One...In A Children's Movie!
"'Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory' boat scene."
"Honorable mention of claustrophobia when Augustus gets stuck in the chocolate tube."
At Least We Know He Had A "Sole"...
"Who Framed Roger Rabbit."
"That poor shoe….."- dalalice5555
At Least The Song Is Catchy...
"Not even Artax, which was awful, but the Rockbiter and his good strong hands."- marxychick1Neverending Story 80S GIFGiphy
Dorothy Gettying Electro Shock Therapy Says it All...
"Return to Oz."- Jeff_Steelflexx
"Horrifying! What about the animated wig heads?"- weensfordayz
The Reigning King Of Childhood Trauma
"Old Yeller."- IceTech59
"I remember watching this on TV during, I think, Wonderful World of Disney (Sunday nights were Disney night on TV)."
"Cried and cried and cried."
"I've never been able to watch it again and I've never shown it to my kids!"- crowwitch
Not All Friendships Are Tenable... A Terrifying Thought
"'The Fox and the Hound'."
"Still makes me incredibly sad, lol."- mental_reincarnationbest friends friendship GIFGiphy
Sometimes, writers and filmmakers simply overestimate what might go over a child's head.
Or, for that matter, they might underestimate their emotional capacity.
Regardless, ask any of Fairuza Balk's fans which is scarier, Return to Oz or The Craft, and their answer will be immediate...
(... and it won't be The Craft...)