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The Truth About Henry VIII’s “Reject Queen”

In the saga of King Henry VIII, Anne of Cleves holds her secrets tight. She gave him no children, they were married for barely half a year, and most surprising of all, she survived. Legend has it that Henry fell in love with Anne’s flattering portrait, took one look at her in real life, and divorced her. But what was the real truth behind Henry's disgust? Read on to find out.

1. She Was A Born Rebel

Henry VIII's future wife Anne of Cleves came from stubborn stock. Her father John, Duke of Cleves, was one of the bad boys of the Protestant Revolution, and openly ticked off the Pope and other Catholic monarchs left, right, and center. Accordingly, he raised Anne and her sisters and brother to think deeply and to think for themselves. But Anne had one more secret weapon on her road to Henry VIII.

2. She Was Perfect For Henry In One Way

File:Catherine of Aragon as Mary Magdalene.jpg - Wikimedia

See, while Anne's family was scandalous among a certain set, she was exactly what Henry VIII was looking for. Ever since he had divorced his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, Henry also despised Catholicism and the Pope. So when Anne started to become a marriageable age, Henry's eye fell right on her. Only, he didn't get the response he was hoping for.

3. Her Mother Disliked Her Suitor

Anne was extremely close with her mother, Maria of Julich-Berg, and their woman-heavy household—Anne did, after all, have two other sisters—was something of a haven for the young girl. Indeed, when Henry first began courting Anne, the matron of the family tried to prevent the union, saying she was "loath to suffer her to depart her". But that wasn't even the worst part.

4. Her Husband Was A Creep

We all know that Henry VIII was mega lecherous during his day, but most people don't understand just how bad it was for poor Anne of Cleves. While the 24-year-old Anne was relatively mature for a royal bride, Henry VIII was still practically double her age and almost 50 years old when he was sniffing at her skirts. Oh, and there's more.

5. Henry Wanted To Marry Her Sister

File:Enrique VIII de Inglaterra, por Hans Holbein el Joven.jpg

Though Anne's tragic tale with King Henry has gone down in history, few people know the whole disturbing story of their courtship. For one, Henry didn't just court Anne as his bride—he also considered her younger sister Amalia as his potential Wife #4. Maybe if he'd actually chosen Amalia, the disaster that was his fourth marriage never would have happened.

But then again, the beginning of their official courtship wasn't any better...

6. Her Future Husband Was Shallow

In the late 1530s, Henry sent his court painter Hans Holbein on a creepy mission. Still deciding between the two sisters, he told him to go paint both Anne and Amalia so he could decide which one he liked best. He also gave Holbein a very specific instruction: Paint the girls accurately and don't flatter them, because he needed a beautiful queen. Well, this is where it all started to go wrong.

7. She Tried To Hide Herself

File:Hans Holbein the Younger - The Ambassadors - Google Art

When it came time to do portraits of the Cleves sisters, Hans Holbein ran into one big difficulty. Both Anne and Amalia kept their faces covered with veils, as per the modest German customs of the time. The painter had to wheedle his way in and gain their trust before Anne and her sister finally revealed their faces and let themselves be painted. Spoiler: This was a big mistake.

8. She Beat Out Her Sister

After Holbein returned and Henry saw both portraits of the women, he obviously went with Anne over Amalia—but his motives were very far from romantic. Many historians agree that the choice probably had less to do with looks, and more because as the elder daughter, Anne had more hereditary rights than her sister. Aw, true love. Maybe THAT's why it unraveled so fast.

9. She Got Lost In Translation

Henry's "don't flatter" directive to Holbein goes against the common story that the painter deceived the king and painted a beautified portrait of the actually homely Anne. Even so, as any online dater can tell you, you can't tell everything from a picture—especially not chemistry. And let's just say, when Anne walked into the room, Henry was not pleased...

10. She Had A Meet-Ugly

File:Henry VIII by Joos van Cleve.jpg - Wikimedia

Almost as soon as he met her, Henry's reaction to his bride was chilling. He pretty much immediately complained about her looks, and blamed not only Holbein for supposedly glowing her up too much, but also his chief Minister Thomas Cromwell, who urged him to marry Anne and kept talking up her beauty. And since this is King Henry we're talking about, he did not hold back.

11. Henry Dealt Her A Cruel Insult

Henry's exact response after actually seeing Anne has gone down infamy. He apparently grumbled, "She is nothing so fair as she hath been reported". Still other sources claim he called her a "Flanders Mare," an infamous nickname that has stuck with poor Anne ever since, though as we'll see, that little moniker has another origin entirely. Yet despite King Henry's horrible reaction, the royal wedding was already in the works. There was no backing out now.

12. She Became A Queen Of England

Queen Victoria's small diamond crown, copy fake replica fa… |

On January 6, 1540, Anne of Cleves married King Henry VIII at the Royal Palace of Placentia, despite all his protests and misgivings. On the day of the wedding, Henry gave his new queen a ring that he had inscribed with her new motto: "God send me well to keep". It could have been a fairy tale day, but Anne's nightmare was just beginning.

13. She Made A Horrible Second Impression

Once the unhappy couple finally married, there was still the dreaded wedding night...and alhough it was a chance for Anne to rise in Henry's estimation, it went horribly. On the morning after the wedding, the king reportedly complained, “I liked her before not well, but now I like her much worse". So what actually happened? Well...

14. She Was A Total Novice In The Bedroom

When her ladies questioned Anne about her night with the king, Anne's reply was revealing in all the wrong ways. She told them, “When he comes to bed he kisseth me, and he taketh me by the hand, and biddeth me 'Good night, sweetheart'; and in the morning kisseth me and biddeth 'Farewell, darling.'" So...just kisses then. Did poor and sheltered Anne even know how to consummate her marriage?

There is a fair chance that Anne believed these smooches were all it took to seal the deal. Henry, meanwhile, had more embarrassing complaints.

15. She Had "Evil Smells"

File:Wenceslas Hollar - Anne of Cleves (.) (State 2).jpg

It wasn’t just about Anne's inexperience in the bedroom. After all, Henry VIII liked his wives innocent and pliable. Instead, Henry accused Anne of even worse sins. He claimed that in addition to how little he was attracted to her, she also had “very evil smells about her" that he caught a whiff of at the most inopportune times. Then he really took it up a notch.

16. Henry Claimed She Was A "Loose" Woman

Henry also threw Anne's virginity into question, which was a serious allegation during a time when a woman's worth was all about her "purity". Henry's evidence for this? "The looseness of her...tokens". As you might tell from his way with words, Henry was a poet and songwriter in his youth. Whatever the truth, though, Anne was in for her biggest humiliation yet.

17. She Had A Previous Lover

File:Portrait of Francis de Lorraine, 2nd Duke of Guise (1519–1563

After their disappointing meeting and wedding night, Henry was desperate to get rid of Anne, so he came up with an ingenious plot. In 1527, an 11-year-old Anne had been briefly betrothed to another man, Francis of Lorraine. Though her parents quickly canceled the match, it would bite her in the well-clothed back in January 1540, when Henry struck out HARD.

18. Her Husband Tried To Slander Her

Henry and his councilors, looking for a way to weasel their king out of his ill-fated match, tried to use Anne’s childhood pre-contract to Francis of Lorraine as “proof” that she was not free to marry. Um, guys, we've all had exes. And maybe even this accusation wasn't enough, because they soon took the divorce proceedings to a disgusting climax.

19. She Was In A Courtroom Drama

Henry held a full-blown trial for his annulment from Anne, and it was an absolute three-ring circus. You see, the king wanted to cut off the marriage on the grounds that they had never consummated the union. Easy enough, right? Well, wrong. Because while Henry wanted to claim he hadn't slept with Anne, he didn't want anyone to think he was impotent. To prove his vigor, he resorted to an incredibly crude claim.

20. Her Name Got Dragged Through The Mud

File:Henry VIII and the Barber Surgeons, by Hans Holbein the

Get this: Henry hired a doctor to come in and defend his, er, male desires. According to the medic, His Majesty experienced an entire two “nocturnal pollutions” (i.e. wet dreams), even as he slept with Anne for days without consummating the marriage. In other words, the king was not impotent, it was only the marriage itself that was bad. He just needed you to know that. Worst of all, it worked...

21. She Had An Infamous Divorce

In the end, Henry VIII got what he wanted yet again, and they officially annulled their short and ugly union on July 9th, 1540 after just six months—the briefest of his many marital adventures. I'm betting Anne was pretty relieved to leave the marriage with her head still squarely attached to her shoulders. Yet in reality, this was just the start of Anne and Henry's sordid history.

22. She Gave Henry A Tragic Gift

silver diamond ring on white surfacePhoto by Kazzle John Delbo on Unsplash

After the annulment was official, Henry and Anne had to go through the very awkward stage of giving their possessions back to each other. Anne’s wedding ring was one of the very first items to go...and she returned with a stroke of genius. When Anne sent it back, she told Henry to break it apart, since it was of little worth. Do I detect some shade? If she wasn't angry yet, though, Henry's next move must have incensed her.

23. Henry Double-Crossed Her

Even as he was married to Anne of Cleves, Henry committed a cold-hearted betrayal. Certain that Anne wasn't The One, Henry started immediately casting about for his next wife. He quickly honed in on the young Catherine Howard, and married the new girl within a few weeks of his annulment from Anne. Yep, sounds like Henry. Only, Anne must have learned a thing or two, because her reaction to this was as Machiavellian as they come.

24. She Played The Game Of Thrones

In public, Anne held no hard feelings about Catherine Howard replacing her on the throne and in the royal marriage bed. For the New Year in 1541, Anne even gifted her ex-husband and his new wife two fine horses, and also joined the couple for dancing. Smart girl, Anne—but as we'll see, eventually even Anne couldn't play nice. For now, though, she had a bigger scandal to deal with.

25. People Thought She Had A Secret Lovechild

gold and red cathedral interiorPhoto by Tom Podmore on Unsplash

Just because Anne was free of Henry doesn't mean she was free of controversy, and soon a dark rumor started going around the castle. In November 1541, people started whispering that Anne of Cleves had given birth to a secret child. Just to thicken the plot, some sources even said it was King Henry VIII's own son. This had disturbing consequences.

26. Henry Opened An Inquest On Her

Though the baby scandal was almost definitely a rumor gone wrong, the crown still took chilling action. Henry launched a serious investigation into the whispers and even detained two people for alleging that Anne was Henry’s true wife after all, and they had consummated the union. Then, soon enough, Anne was in deep trouble again.

27. She Was Friends With Benefits

File:AnneBoleynHever.jpg - Wikimedia

In 1542, Anne found herself in hot water with King Henry VIII once moe. By then, the king believed Queen Catherine Howard had been unfaithful to him, and the poor girl was awaiting execution for treason, just like Anne Boleyn before her. Not content to suffer through yet another of his breakups on his own, Henry lashed out at Anne of Cleves in a cruel way.

28. Henry Sent Her An Enraged Letter

Since they were still on friendly terms, mostly thanks to Anne's desire to keep her head, Henry thought he could use Anne whichever way he pleased. The hurting Henry sent Anne a terse letter, ordering his ex-wife to return a royal ring that Catherine Howard had given to her as a gift. Way to strike at two exes in one swoop. But the mess was just getting started...

29. She Tried To Become Queen Again

History has tended to paint Anne as a humble and shy woman, but the truth is much different. When Henry finally executed his fifth queen Catherine Howard in 1542 for adultery, it was Anne who harbored a dark secret. She may have viewed the execution as less of a tragedy and more of an opportunity. After all, the spot of "Queen" was now open for business again, and Anne jumped at the chance.

30. She Made A Doomed Power Play

File:Unknown woman formerly known as Catherine Howard.png

There are more than a few hints that after Catherine Howard's violent demise, Anne of Cleves held some hope of re-marrying Henry and convincing him she could be just as good of a wife as she had been a friend these past years. For one thing, Anne's brother even tried to pressure Henry into taking her back. Instead, it all blew up in Anne's face.

31. Henry Replaced Her

Just when Anne thought her time had finally come as the permanent Queen of England, Henry went and chose Catherine Parr as his sixth wife instead. But it got even more mortifying than that for Anne. Parr was an English widow who was actually a few years older than our girl. Ouch, that's one's gotta hurt...and Anne did not take the news well.

32. She Sniped At Henry's New Wife

File:Wenceslas Hollar - Catherine Howard (.) (State 2).jpg

We don’t know how exactly Anne reacted to Catherine Howard's execution, but she reportedly detested the idea of the upstart Parr as her "replacement". Anne did think of herself as the more attractive option, and she also remarked, “Miss Parr is taking a great burden on herself," somehow insulting both Parr and Henry in the same comment. Masterful, Anne.

33. She Was Uneducated

Anne had a perfectly functional education for a European princess, and she was even innately clever enough to become fluent in English within a very short time. Except there was one huge thing missing. Unfortunately, growing up, her conservative family discouraged Anne from frivolities such as music, singing, and dancing. This was actually more of a problem than you might think.

34. She And Henry Were Fundamentally Incompatible

Although Anne was accomplished in her own right, Henry was a lifelong geek of the arts—including all the things Mommy and Daddy Cleves forbid Anne from taking part in. So even if Anne could speak to the king in English, the pair probably had very little to actually talk about. Reminder, guys: emotional chemistry is just as important as physical chemistry. Still, Anne knew how to make up for her deficiencies...

35. She Made Friends In High Places

File:Darnley stage 3.jpg -

Like the cunning woman she truly was, Anne got along with all of Henry’s kids. She even sent gifts to the king’s heir, the future Edward VI, was close with the future Queen Mary I, and also made an impression on the future Elizabeth I, to whom she left part of her jewelry collection when she passed. After all, Anne clearly knew where power flowed from...and it paid off.

36. She Earned Her Retirement

Anne's later life was the picture of idyllic living in many ways. Leveraging her friendship with Henry's children, she enjoyed good favor in court under his daughter Queen Mary I, and eventually retired to a quiet life away from the city. According to one source, the middle-aged Anne was "courteous, gentle, a good housekeeper" and generous to all her servants. That's more than Anne Boleyn could ever say.

37. Henry Forced Her To Convert

Despite her notorious reputation, Anne made surviving King Henry VIII look easy. But, well, it wasn't. In order to marry him in the first place, she had to agree to more than a few trade-offs. Besides going to live far away from her beloved mother, Henry also insisted she convert to Anglicanism when she married him. Anne, without any other option, obediently agreed. But the minute she could, Anne asserted her dominance.

38. She Did Exactly What She Wanted

File:Westminster Abbey St Peter.jpg - Wikimedia

In the end, Anne's attention to Henry's children didn't just provide her with a comfortable old age, they also allowed her to do what she darn well pleased after Henry passed. Anne was so close to Queen Mary, she likely even attended the young queen's coronation at Westminster Abbey, and she converted back to Roman Catholicism for the Catholic queen. Take that, Henry.

39. She Got A Strange Severance Package

Henry proved to be a generous ex-husband to Anne of Cleves, even though most of his ex-wives couldn't say the same. After she agreed to the annulment, Henry hooked Anne up with a severance package that included great manors, estates, and a sexy royal income. Not bad to keep your head and your financial independence. But that wasn't all.

40. She Was A Sister Wife

File:King Henry VIII from NPG (2).jpg - Wikimedia

After their divorce, Henry kept the random acts of kindness rolling. He ruled that Anne would be England’s highest-ranking lady, with only the King’s wife and daughters ahead of her in precedence. He even adopted her in name as “the King's Beloved Sister". Did that make up for all the torment he must have put her through? Gonna go with "no". Still, there is one cruel story about Anne that Henry had nothing to do with.

41. She Wasn't A "Flanders Mare"

Anne’s oft-repeated and cruel nickname, “The Flanders Mare,” did not originate from Henry VIII, much as I'd like to blame him for everything. In fact, it didn’t even originate from the Tudor period. The name only emerged in the late 17th century, when the history of Henry VIII grew into a legend. Anne luckily never knew about the hurtful moniker during her lifetime.

42. She Was A Monet

File:Queen Anne of Cleves Wellcome V0048328.jpg - Wikimedia

It’s the question we’re all here to learn: What did the legendary “ugly one” of Henry’s wives really look like? Was she really that ugly? Or was she secretly hot and just awkward? The answer probably lays in “attractive enough, I guess?” Though Anne was tall with pretty blonde hair, she also apparently had a "solemn face” that aged her beyond her 24 years.

43. She Was A True Survivor

Anne “survived” her term as Henry VIII’s fourth wife, but others suffered a much darker fate. Henry had Thomas Cromwell, the engineer behind the match in the first place, executed for treason on the same day he married his fifth wife, Catherine Howard. The man Anne had to thank for her crown lost his head on July 28th, 1540.

44. She Was Caught In A Political Scandal

The big plot hole in all this is: If Henry disliked Anne so much, why the heck didn't he get out while he still could? He was a super-powerful King of England; surely he could snap his fingers and the wedding would be off. Well, it all goes back to the fact that Anne and Henry were a political match. There was simply no way to call the wedding off without offending his German allies.

45. You Can Still See Her Portrait

File:Anne of Cleves, miniature by Hans Holbein the Younger.jpg

Anne of Cleves' strange, tragic story all starts and ends with that first painting of her by Hans Holbein. Believe it or not, although so many other Tudor artifacts are lost to the sands of time, you can still see the original painting to this day. Oddly enough for its very English history, it hangs in the Louvre museum in Paris.

46. She Was Related To Henry

Even from her far away homeland, Anne was a distant cousin to Henry VIII. Like all his wives, Anne of Cleves is a descendant of King Edward I "Longshanks" of England. Yep, King Henry sure did have a type when it came to his six wives. Edward was Anne's nine-times great-grandfather, for those who care to keep an exact count.

47. She Lived Longer Than Her Ex

Henry VIII and wives vector illustration | Public domain

Anne of Cleves is the longest surviving of Henry VIII’s wives, and she not only outlived his other queens, but also the king himself. On July 16, 1557, just months shy of her 42nd birthday, she passed on in her adopted country of England, mostly likely from cancer. When the former queen passed, her family gave her a heartbreaking tribute.

48. She Got The Last Laugh

As Queen Mary I’s beloved “aunt,” attendants buried Anne of Cleves in the legendary Westminster Abbey, albeit not in a very prominent place. But Anne had one more trick up her sleeve. Despite her annulment, her grave reads “Anne of Cleves, Queen of England". Even more impressive? Anne of Cleves is the only one of Henry's wives to be buried in Westminster Abbey.

49. A Stranger Surprised Her

Anne is now infamous as Henry’s rejected queen, but modern historians suggest a more disturbing reason for his disgust. Anne’s first meeting with Henry was a diplomatic blunder: Making their way to London, Anne’s party stopped on New Year’s Day 1540 at Rochester, where she took time to look at bull-baiting from the window. Suddenly, an old burly stranger entered the room—and everything went horribly wrong.

50. She Had A Horrible First Meeting

File:Hans Holbein d. J. - Henry VIII and the Barber Surgeons

You see, this stranger was really Henry VIII in disguise. He had wanted to creep in and get a sneak peek of his new bride-to-be. He also expected that she would see through his costume via the power of “true love”...or something along those lines. Guess what? This was not a good idea. When Henry approached Anne, her response made his blood run cold.

51. Henry Tried To Role-Play With Her

Depending on the account, either Henry tried to get Anne's attention and she politely ignored him, or he outright tried to kiss and grope her. Which, uh, understandably caused the young woman to ring the alarms about a strange dude harassing her. Either way, it was utterly disastrous. Henry left the encounter angry, embarrassed, and possibly ready to take revenge...

52. Henry Scorned Her

File:Henry VIII Ditchley Portrait after Holbein.png - Wikimedia

Some historians believe that this ill-fated early encounter between Anne of Cleves and Henry VIII sealed her fate. According to them, Anne's lack of enthusiasm for Henry (even in disguise) made the king put up his defenses. If she was unimpressed with him, he may have decided to be unimpressed with her no matter what. And the rest, as they say, is history.

People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

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

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

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

– Practical_Eye_3600

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

– bikergirlr7

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

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

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

– KingBooRadley


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

– AquamarineCheetah

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

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

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

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

– OhhGoood

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

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

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

– Frostygrunt


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

– RandomSharinganUser

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

– Kolkeia

If Only

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

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

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

– drummerskillit

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

– Isitjustmedownhere

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

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

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

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

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

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

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

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

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


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


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


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

– We-R-Doomed

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

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

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

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

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

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

– LesPaltaX

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

– MoonlightKayla

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

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

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

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

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

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

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

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

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


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

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



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

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

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


Take Me Back

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

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



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

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


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



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



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

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



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


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


The Fog

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

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


Through the Walls

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

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

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

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

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

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

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

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

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

– r7ndom

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

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

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

– dee-fondy

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

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

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

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

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

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

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

– KatMagic1977

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

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


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

– WaySavvyD

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

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

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

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

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

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

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

– LiZZygsu

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

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

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

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

– Princess-Pancake-97

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

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

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

– snic2030

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

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

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

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

– dma1965

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

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

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