People Confess Which Experiences Absolutely Broke Them

We've all had experiences which left us sad or despondent.

A friend moving away, the loss of a pet, missing out on a promotion.

While these experiences often result in our feeling the need to drown out our feelings in some capacity, we know deep down that we'll eventually bounce back.

Some experiences, however, take a bit longer to recover from, if we manage to recover from them at all.

The sort of experiences which, for lack of a better term, break us.

Redditor Vanguard2002 was curious to hear from people who went through experiences that truly broke them, leading them to ask:
"What’s something that mentally and/or emotionally broke you?"

The Death Of A Spouse

"My wife's death."

"We both knew her cancer was terminal from the beginning, and I had seven years to make my peace with that."

"As the end neared, I assured everyone I'd be fine."

"Despite all that, seeing her stop breathing was a total shock to me."

"And I even knew she'd die that very night."

"When you've been with dying people, you can tell when it's their last day."

"It's been six years, and I'm still grieving her."- jefuchs

A Child With Substance Abuse Problems

"My oldest son became addicted to opioids and ODed in our home 4 times."

"The first time our youngest found him from the death rattle sounds. I'll never forget giving him CPR."

"I'll never forget an OD that put him in the ICU, non responsive with a breathing tube due to heart atrophy."

"He is 2 years now sober with clinic MAT help and his own tenacity."

"We are all scarred for his time in active addiction but time is letting this wound heal."- level 1pnutbutta4me

Death Of A Grandparent

"I could honestly give a lot of things that have f*cked me up, but I’ve bounced back from most of them."

"The one thing that broke me entirely last year was the death of my grandfather."

"He’d had a stroke around April 2021."

"April 1st, 2022 he had to be rushed to the hospital."

"I dropped everything to go see him."

"I’d been pretty close with him growing up."

"My grandparents raised me and my sister and he and I used to go to Gettysburg together a lot."

"He was in the hospital all of April, with declining health."

"We would visit all the time."

"He developed sepsis, and we wanted to move him to hospice, but by the end of the month even moving him would probably kill him."

"April 28th, it was my first week at a new job and my aunt texted that we should all hurry over to the hospital because they didn’t think there was much time."

"I left work and stayed at the hospital with my family all day."

"The nurses let us break Covid protocol and all stay in the room as long as we were quiet."

"We all had gowns, masks, and gloves anyway because he had sepsis."

"At that point, he was practically in a coma."

"We thought he would pass that day but he didn’t, and when it came time for me to leave I knew it would be the last time I’d see him alive."

"I sobbed so much I almost threw up, and it was almost impossible to drag me out."

"The next day, he was gone."

"The following week was the funeral and viewing."

"The viewing broke me too."

"I cried so much those days, especially when we had to close the casket for the funeral."

"We all left little things for him to be buried with."

"Cherry chapstick, Guinness, and a little alligator plush I’d brought."

"I have the matching one."

"He always used to say, 'See you later, alligator' and I would say, 'After a while crocodile'.”

"So now I always tell him 'See you later, alligator' at his grave, as that’s what I told him before he died, and before they buried him."

"April 29th this year will mark the first full year he’s been gone."

"I’ve never handled death well, so it still hurts a lot."

"But he was in so much pain, and I know he went peacefully and he’s not suffering anymore."

"He believed in Heaven, and that’s where I hope he is."- Appropriate-Fox2381

Death Of A Parent

"Hearing my mom ask if it was going to hurt to die."

"Few mins later she took her last breath."

"Squeezed my hand and a slow release."

"Am I okay?"


"A year and a half later I’m still not."- Mysterious_Window575

"I was in therapy and was nervous about my child’s upcoming birthday party because of serious anxiety issues."

"She told me to imagine the worst thing happening and when the party is over I would realize everything was ok."

"Day of birthday party I received an out of state call from a coroner."

"My mom was found dead in her apartment."

"An investigation occurred but it was determined she had a diabetic episode, hit her head on the kitchen counter, bled out and died."

"An hour later my friend arrived, hysterically crying indicating she just got a call HER mom died."

"I was numb and broken."

"Life has never been the same since."- EverywhereINowhere

Finding Someone Died

"When I found my fiancé dead on the ground after I came home from work."

"I was 22 at the time and it broke me in all the ways."- caramelcoldbrew·

"Finding my twin brother dead."- No-Contribution-469

Illness In The Family

"Having a mother with schizophrenia."

"Such a tough illness for someone to experience, and tough on a family."- Eeahsnp18

When The Child Becomes The Parent

"Filing my dad's bankruptcy, getting him diagnosed for early onset alzheimer's/dementia, and being his primary caregiver."

"It completely reverses the father/son role in a way I was not prepared for."

"Better now, but still is heartbreaking."- Snoogles150


"I was misdiagnosed for 2 years."

"Told I had anorexia when really I had Crohn's disease."

"It got to the point where my bowel ruptured and I was very, very close to death."

"2 years of being told this very, VERY physical pain was all in my head has caused endless knock on affects."

"I remember just laying there as the paramedics couldn't find much of a pulse and thinking 'I'm dying but at least I was right' which is all kinds of f*cked up."- goosedrinkwine369

Love Cut Short

"My fiancée died the day after we got engaged."

"She was fine, then sick, then gone in less than 24 hours."

"She died of meningitis."

"We spent an awesome day together while she was back in town from college and I asked her that afternoon."

"Later, she said her legs were going numb and her back hurt."

"We went to the hospital because they had just had a whole presentation about the symptoms of meningitis at her school."

"The doctor did some tests and said everything was negative l, so they sent us home."

"We went to bed thinking everything would be fine."

"I woke up sometime around 2am and looked at her."

"She was covered in sweat and turning blue so I picked her up and carried her to the car."

"We hauled @ss back to the ER, but she stopped breathing before we got there and didn’t regain consciousness again."

"At least I was holding her hand the whole way."

"The doctor did say they got her heart started a couple of times, but all of her organs failed, and her body completely shut down so they had to call it."

"Later, they asked if I wanted the ring."

"But they said they had to cut it off because her body had swollen so much."

"I told them to keep it because I wouldn’t have been able to handle what it meant if it was in one piece."

"I’m as alright as I get."

"Lately I’ve been thinking about our first days more than the last one."

"It’s hard to tell if that makes it better or worse, though."

"Relationships are hard."

"Anytime things get too good; there’s a compulsion to pull away for self-preservation."

"There’s no making it through of another round of that."-


Some experiences are so painful that the very thought of moving on seems impossible.

Next time you find yourself struggling to get out of bed, however, always know that even if you have trouble finding the words, there are always people eager and willing to listen.

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