Satisfying Small Victories
Everyone has heard the stories of hardships and struggles, but sometimes in life, things can be surprisingly easy. Whether an unexpected life hack, trade secret, or just through pure luck, these stories encompass the little victories of everyday people.
I lived in New Jersey, and a friend of mine invited me to a commercial audition at a New York City bar. I went because of the bar and only auditioned after two drinks. I left thinking it was a waste of time. I had no idea what was coming.
A month later, I get a call that they want to use me for the commercial. Plus, it turns out the director was the guy who directed the original Space Jam. I got lines and ended up in two of their commercials. I then got a 40k payday, where I thought someone made a clerical error. This kick-started my acting career.
Staying Linked In
On LinkedIn, I always have my status set to “looking for work” even when I have a job. One day, a recruiter asked me if I wanted a job. I found the position and applied with the company directly, and apparently, they had been looking for someone with my qualifications.
Just like that, I made $20k more and got a super laid-back job with flexible hours where I never had to commute to work. I also have a really nice title now and actually just interviewed for another job that’s a higher title with higher pay. I’ve only been at my current job for seven months.
Not So Common Knowledge
My small victory was overcoming a lifelong speech impediment at 22 years old. A lot of the "common knowledge" around speech impediments is that if you can't beat the thing by the time you're 10 or so, that's pretty much it for you.
The idea is that your speaking patterns have become so ingrained at this point that you basically have to accept that you're stuck with it for the rest of your life. This was the explanation given when I was cut from speech therapy in third grade.
It was a big part of why it took me until I was 22 to return to speech therapy as an adult. I assumed this issue was stuck in stone, and that I was kidding myself by thinking it was something that could be fixed. But someone had made a big mistake. Turns out that common wisdom was all incorrect.
There actually is no deadline for when you can fix a speech impediment; you just need to be given competent speech therapy. So, my lifelong lateral lisp was gone within two sessions, and my lifelong rhotacism (can't pronounce 'r's) was gone within a month.
It was awesome! But also, really? It was that easy? I could've had a happy, normal childhood this whole time but I just...didn't? Because the adults in my life thought the issue couldn't be fixed back when I was only eight years old? Well, that sucks.
I achieved a small victory fixing clogged drains. It started out because my sink drain plug wouldn't stay up. I poked around under the sink and found the pop-up rod had rusted completely through and broken.
It cost me five dollars for a new one at the plumbing supply store next to where I worked at the time. It took five minutes to figure out how to swap, and now I know how sink and shower drains come apart, which makes unclogging them simple.
Maybe it's just me, but in my brain, it seemed like that was something I'd have to call a plumber to come to unclog, but it's all remarkably simple.
Small Victory At Small Claimsman in black shirt sitting beside woman in white shirtPhoto by Saúl Bucio on Unsplash
My small victory was suing someone in Small Claims. It was surprisingly easy because my case was rock solid and I had a professionally printed document of evidence, witness statements, and precise records sent over to the court.
Meanwhile, the defendant did literally nothing but send unlabeled loose printouts of my Facebook page as her so-called evidence. It was a very quick judgment for the plaintiff.
Best Job Ever
I've hated every job I've ever had. Then at 18 years old, I joined the forces for six years. That sucked the whole time, then I went into customer service at Walmart, and the staff was mean to everyone. I tried security and the staff was just degrading.
I had job after job doing what I thought was the "right" thing. One day, my life changed. I decided to apply for a local HVAC company and worked at a call center. Nothing big, I think there were a total of nine of us on the phones. Honestly, it's the best job I've ever had.
We all get along, spend hours a day on our group chat sharing memes, and our management has one-on-one meetings every two weeks with the goal of "this meeting is not work-related but we want to know just how you're doing, how's is life treating you, what do you need".
There's constant communication about expectations and how we can better meet them and how they can help us perform better. The majority of the company's profits are used to better employee lives (I get monthly commission and residuals, and $30 a month in healthcare) along with monthly potlucks, paid lunches, and competitive pay starting at $17 an hour.
I haven't seen any turnover...none! My position was only hiring because too many people got promoted.
Too Good To Be True
For months, I had been applying for tons of jobs on every platform I could find. I was also talking to friends to get critiques on my resume/cover letter. Updating my online portfolio, et cetera.
Then one day a recruiter messaged me out of the blue on LinkedIn and basically handed me a dream job. It was one interview and then a call to say “Hey you're hired”. I legitimately thought it was a joke right up until my first day of work.
How I Doubled My Salary
I got a salary request when applying for a job, and accidentally wrote double what I meant to write since the number keys were right next to each other. They accepted anyway.
The 20-Dollar Flat Screen
I found a 60-inch TV by the dumpster. Plugged it in but it didn’t turn on. Looked up common problems with the model number, bought a part on eBay for $20, replaced the part, and had a huge TV for $20.
Sleep Hackedperson holding white medication pillPhoto by Mariana Rascão on Unsplash
I never slept well. Then one day, there’s an over-the-counter magnesium supplement called “calm”. I drink a cup every night and sleep like a hibernating bear. It was that easy.
No One Else Applied
This is how I got the Erasmus scholarship. We had only two places each term for the 300+ people in my university program. I always thought of applying, but I thought my chance was too small to get into one of the places, so I didn't really push myself to apply.
Until I did. Turns out I was the only one applying, and I spent the next half a year in the lovely city of North Sweden completely financed by the European Union.
When In Doubt, Try Amazon
I had a loose hinge on my door. It kind of drove me crazy for three years, but I had no idea how to fix the wood that had been stripped. Then I found a product on Amazon for $10 where you shove on a sleeve, break it off and then screw in the new screws.
I bought two new hinges that don’t squeak. It took about 10 minutes and cost $20 and it’s no longer a problem.
A Cheaper Fix
The power steering failed on my Acura. My local Acura dealership wanted to charge me well over $1,000 to fix it. But I had a better idea. I bought a power steering pump off Amazon for $70 and found a YouTube video that explained how to fit it.
I don't have any car maintenance experience but it only took a couple of hours to do the job myself and it worked like a charm.
Thank God I’m Fired
I had accepted a new job but was anxious about giving my notice at my old job. I had been there for 8 years and really loved my team. I had also been stressed out that I was taking a week off between jobs because it was a stretch financially.
I finally set up a meeting with my boss. I couldn't even sleep the night before. An hour before I was going to give my notice, my boss's boss called me into a meeting with HR. I was being laid off along with a large number of other employees.
They were so sorry, and my boss's boss was in tears. She promised they would "take care of me". Anyway, I got 20 weeks of severance and a full three weeks off between jobs. Definitely, the best thing that's ever happened to me.
I was so shocked that I almost started laughing during the meeting and had to pretend I was trying not to cry.
The Miracle Cureclear drinking glass on white tablePhoto by Giorgio Trovato on Unsplash
My small victory was drinking water. I went from having sleeping issues to waking up fully rested. Water has changed my life! I thought it would be super difficult to kick soda, but once I tried, the benefits certainly outweighed the lack of taste.
Lying On The Job
I got a job that required full-time fieldwork for minimal pay. On my first day, they asked about my other skills. I saw other people using AutoCAD so I said I used it in college but I was rusty. This was a lie. I had only ever used it once to draw some circles.
The company was excited and got me a 4-day refresher class. I learned AutoCAD and haven't been in the field in over a year. I later asked for more pay since I wasn't a field tech anymore.
They said “no”, so I got another job using AutoCAD for double the salary. Pro tip: learn AutoCAD C3D, it's not that hard, and people will think you're a tech genius.
“DJ's Got Us Falling In Love”
In my sophomore year of college, my buddies were throwing a party at their house. One of them was a moderately successful DJ in the local college scene. We were having a good time and the DJ was doing his thing when he had to use the washroom. That's when something beautiful happened.
As he's leaving, he taps me on the shoulder and asks me to just stand at his turntables to make sure no one messes with them. He had songs queued up so I just had to stand there and wait.
About 30 seconds later, two women walk up to me and say how much they love the music. I tell them it’s just a playlist and I’m only keeping it running. But they are still super impressed.
A few minutes later the actual DJ comes back and I give up my post. Then one of the girls comes up and asks me to dance with her. One thing leads to another and we ended up having a great time.
At one point I told my friend about this girl I’d met while covering him at the DJ booth. He laughed and said, “Yeah sometimes it’s that easy”.
Worth A Try
My small victory was getting a job working for the US Department of Defense. I'd always thought that those kinds of jobs required prior government service, and a whole host of various degrees or such to get a job with them.
Then I saw a job opening for one site near where I lived and thought to try it. So I applied. I honestly didn't expect to even get a callback or anything. I not only got the callback, but also got hired for the job.
The requirements were far more lenient than I expected. All the job required was a clean criminal record and a willingness to learn. I ended up working as a wastewater treatment tech for them, and eventually got an environmental engineering degree with their help.
Never Too Late
My small victory was going back to school. I've been toying with the idea for years, but telling myself it was too far, too expensive, too time-consuming, et cetera. Because I had a home, job, and child to maintain, I couldn't do it.
Something in me finally cracked recently and I thought to try it and made a call to a tech school nearby. Three days later I'm on a tour. The tour is maybe an hour or two in total. The papers were all done online, and I start Monday!
They also threw a ton of financial aid at me. I'm only going to pay about $50 a month until I've graduated, and then those payments go up to about $95. Still very manageable. My classes are only four hours long and are at night, and I only have to be in class two days a week.
The rest of my studies are done at home with a tablet they provide me, so I didn't even have to buy a computer or anything. I couldn't believe how easy and affordable it actually was.
Up, Up, And Awaywoman in white knit sweater inside aircraftPhoto by Jon Ly on Unsplash
I got my pilot license. To be fair, I did study a lot but it was one of those things I wasn't sure I was going to do well on. My instructor said I'm ready, but I still wasn't sure.
Day of the check-ride, I answered every question correctly without hesitation, and did every maneuver correctly. We parked and my examiner said "So how's it feel to be a private pilot". I thou.ght in my head "There's no way" even though I did everything right with relative ease.
A Little Research Goes A Long Way
I'm a 24-year-old female who knows absolutely nothing about cars. Well, I bought myself a nice front/rear dash cam without considering how to safely wire it and found out I would have to remove parts of my car to wire it behind airbags and stuff so it wouldn't prevent an airbag from deploying properly.
I thought I was going to have to pay someone to install it for me, but then I found an amazing solution. It turns out a simple YouTube video walked me through the whole thing! Now my dashcams look professionally installed. I also learned how to change a blown fuse on the same day because my USB adapter wasn't working.
I was high on the achievement of something new and had a brief hyper-fixation on learning to mod my car but thankfully got over it.
Learning To Love
My small victory was breaking up with someone who wasn't good for me. I stayed way too long in relationships that I didn't want to be in. Once I learned to like myself, I realized I don't have to settle.
I didn't mind being alone in between, and because I liked myself, I started to draw the type of people I actually wanted to be around. The type of people who made me want to keep challenging myself to be better.
If you're in a relationship where your heart aches all the time, where you're accepting less than love and respect and kindness, and if you're in a position to leave and still be safe, just do it.
Even if you don't like yourself yet, you will. This is true for all relationships, not just romantic ones. Surround yourself with people you like to be around, and who like to be around you. Time is all we have, so invest wisely.
The Broken Fridge
Some previous owners left a "broken" fridge in the kitchen when we moved in. They put it in the paperwork that the fridge was broken and that they weren't going to dispose of it. So I made plans to get a new one the week we moved in, but just for fun, I decided to plug the old one in to see what was wrong.
Four years later and we're still using it without issue. We did find that the push-to-connect plastic water line for the ice maker was leaking a bit so we replaced that for about two dollars.
All Little Action
When I was working overseas for a US company, many of my co-workers and I all developed a similar chronic health problem due to our employer's ongoing violation of several workplace health and safety laws.
I repeatedly urged my co-workers to file SPOT reports, because it was not the kind of health issue that goes away on its own. Not one of my co-workers could be bothered to file a report, even though everyone complained constantly about their resulting health issues.
So, I filed a SPOT report. They had no idea what they were missing. I ended up in two years of physical rehab back home, hauling in overseas money tax-free, while not having to work, and ended with a generous five-figure cash settlement.
My health issues, thanks to the medical attention I was able to get by holding my employer accountable, have been resolved. My former co-workers, I imagine, are still just complaining about theirs. There was no lawsuit and no attorney. One single report of injuries was all it took.
The Family Favoritewoman standing beside black and gray concrete buildingPhoto by ᕈ O W L Y on Unsplash
My parents and grandparents all had this really annoying habit of making anything and everything sound way harder or more demanding than it actually is.
Whenever I'd perform the feat and realize how insultingly easy it was, I'd be left a little offended while my family would cheer me on. I never could tell if I was offended because I expected a harder challenge or offended because my own family thought I couldn't handle something so simple.
Maybe it's an ego thing, maybe it's Maybelline. I don't know. But here's the twist. After I turned 18, I started treating everything like it was easier than it looks so I didn't let my mind get caught up thinking I couldn't do it at all. The result of this was that I became one of the handiest and most skilled people in my group.
A Little Upgrade
My small victory was learning to code. I’m no programmer by any means, but I was working a data management job that heavily utilized Excel to update a database via file drop. We were using formulas to check our work against the master file of the database after loading it.
I showed an affinity for working with data and my manager encouraged me to learn SQL and move into analytics. I was intimidated so I put that off for about two years.
Finally, I was so unsatisfied with the job that I knuckled down and got started learning SQL. I was so surprised at how much easier it was than I expected.
With just the basics I had a new job within three months. Now I use it every day. Not so much writing SQL, but using and tweaking existing code to suit my needs. Reading code to determine what it’s doing is a great way to learn as well. With any luck, this time next year I’ll be starting as an analyst.
One hot Summer night, we had a severe thunderstorm that hit my area hard. Power got knocked out everywhere around me. So the next morning, they were able to get the power back on, and all of my lights and appliances came to life...except for one big problem. The 65-inch TV that I bought two weeks prior still wasn't working.
Obviously, I tried to turn it on, unplug and plug it back in, et cetera. I tried every single thing I could think of, and after hours and hours of attempts and endless research online, I came to the conclusion that my TV was just donezo.
I figured even though I had the proper surge/power protection hooked up to it, it somehow must’ve gotten fried in the storm. I was devastated.
But after more hours of reading sites and forums about how to repair it, I find a post on a forum that describes the exact issue I’m having, and they said that all they did was get a hairdryer and aimed warm air into the back of the TV and all the internal junk inside.
I say to myself, “There’s no way that works, but what’ve I got to lose” so I grab a hairdryer and aim it into the back of the TV for about seven or eight minutes, and then plug the TV back in.
And boom! It comes back to life and turns back on. Crisis averted. Not too sure why it worked, but I was ecstatic, to say the least.
I got an email from Amazon that said I was being invited into their "Amazon Vine" program. I had never heard of it, but the email said that I can just request free stuff, and all I have to do is review it.
It sounded too good to be true. In fact, it sounded exactly like a joke. I was 90% sure it was one, especially since they needed me to sign up with my name, address, and social security information. You know, exactly the kind of information you should never give out on the internet.
But the email seemed to come from Amazon itself, so it made me curious. I did some looking into it just to see if it was a joke and how it worked. However, after looking into it more, it turned out to be completely legit.
In the last year, I've gotten about $45,000 worth of free stuff from Amazon, and all I had to do in exchange was write honest reviews about it. If I like it, I say so, and if I hate it, I say so.
I've gotten all sorts of stuff, like a large-screen HD TV, an ice machine, boxes of snacks like cookies and Doritos, furniture, dash cameras, tablets, tattoo machines, and more. My neighbors must think I have a serious spending addiction, and my poor delivery drivers think I've opened up a retail business or something.
I do owe the IRS a bit because it technically counts as income, but for my income bracket that ends up not being too much anyway. And because people always ask me how they can join, well, you can't. You either get an invite, or you don't.
Nobody knows how they choose whom to invite, but it's based somehow on reviews you've done in the past.
Knowing Your Worth
My small victory was negotiating a pay raise. Rumor got around work that I could use a computer. They tried me out on the CNC machine. Turns out my hobby of playing with computer programming for the past 20 years meant I was absolutely fantastic at it.
It also turns out that fixing the edge banding machine isn't that hard if you learn how it works. Suddenly I was the most valuable person in the place. I expected to just get a pay raise because I have the belief that people should get what they deserve.
No pay raise was forthcoming after 18 months. I am a fairly anxious person, but with some encouragement from my friends and family, I worked myself up to ask for the raise. The response made my stomach drop. The first time I asked, my boss just chuckled.
I don't think he was condescending, I just think the way I framed it sounded like a joke. The second time I asked, my boss said he'd think about it. I immediately started looking for a new job.
Turns out, I am a highly desirable employee. Within two weeks, I had three job offers. I resigned. Everyone was sad. My bosses panicked and asked me what it would take for me to stay. So, I demanded a fairly high wage for my trade to stay.
They didn't even hesitate to give it to me. Now I'm the highest-paid person in the place.
Dream Home Dealbrown and white concrete house near green trees under blue sky during daytimePhoto by Johnson Johnson on Unsplash
I got my place because it was sitting on the market for months. It was slightly more than I wanted to pay and it wasn't exactly my style, but it had "potential". It was only four years old and a 15-minute walk to the beach.
It was also on one of the larger blocks in the street. Anyway, I decided to buy it. The pest and building report came back confirming the house was pretty much immaculate. Two months later value had gone up $50,000.
Two years later, the place is worth $200,000 more than I paid. I think everyone overlooked it initially as it only has one bathroom and one small garage, but it does what I need.
I saved 18 years for a deposit and had a great credit score and savings history. I just found the one unicorn property and am so fortunate for it. I managed to even get a bank loan without having to rely on a broker. I absolutely love the place now.
I have a little garden and am putting in trees for the visiting wildlife. The street is quiet, and the neighbors are friendly. I was so lucky to come across it.
Just Another Lego Set
Building a PC is my small victory. With so many sophisticated videos on YouTube that didn't teach the trade well, I thought it would be hard to build a PC. Then I tried it once, and apparently, it was just an adult Lego set, but easier.
Carefree Car Troubles
I completely ruined the first (and last) brand-new car that I ever financed by being a sloppy driver and never changing the oil. Like, not only did I trash the interior of this car, I completely ruined the engine. But here's the kicker.
By some insane stroke of luck, I was granted a recall of my entire engine, due to some unrelated issue. They replaced my engine free of charge, and I drove the car for another 60,000 miles. I recently traded it in for a nice used car and am treating this one like my baby. I used my spare life already.
A Breezy Breakup
My small victory was divorce. Maybe this is an unexpected answer but I was dreading it. I worried it'd be this whole huge debacle. Once I mustered the courage and we got over the initial upset after an hour or two, we just began separating.
The divorce paperwork was simple, the court visit took less than an hour, and boom, we’re divorced. We both moved on amicably. I just feel like people always paint divorce as this incredibly difficult thing but it doesn't have to be and isn't always all that hard to get through.
I once was a temp at a tiny office on a construction site around 2003. I was only there for one day while the regular person was on some training.
They sat me down and told me that I just needed to copy all these numbers from one program to another. So, I selected them, hit ctrl c and ctrl v. They stared at me. Turns out about 60% of this woman's time had been spent manually typing numbers from one place to another.
Machine Takeoverblack flat screen computer monitorPhoto by Jake Walker on Unsplash
I used to process HSA claims around 10-plus years ago. One system we had to use back then was an old terminal program that took four line items per page. That's it. For a usual claim, no big deal, and not too hard to keep track of things over two or three pages for a longer claim.
Most fit on one. However, we also had the dreaded shoebox claims. This was the person who saved up every receipt all year in a metaphorical shoebox and sent everything in, once a year, to empty their account. We hated them.
Dozens or hundreds of line items totaling thousands of dollars. Just because you only have $500 in your HSA doesn't mean we get to stop there. If you sent in $4,000 in receipts, I've got to account for it all. Totally ruined my numbers for the day, and they tracked claims per hour religiously.
The main issue was double-checking that everything added up right when you were done entering it, and at four items a page it took forever to tally. But I came up with a genius plan. I made an Excel sheet.
It was laid out so I could enter every single line, then run a macro that would calculate the needed totals and dump all the text to a text file formatted exactly so I could select four items at a time, and paste them directly into the terminal window from the default starting cursor position, and every field would fill in automatically.
Copy, paste, next. Copy, paste, next. Copy, paste, next, et cetera, et cetera. This easily halved my entry times, with way less work. Finding any typos was much easier. I just had to look at a single organized sheet instead of scrolling through hundreds of pages of terminal text. It was great.
I showed it to my manager so the rest of my team could use it. Her reply made me see red. She was horrified I would use something like that, as no human was "double checking as they went along". This is despite demonstrable improvements to my error rates on large claims after I started using it.
She ordered me to stop using it and forbid anyone in her team from automating any part of their job at all. I kept using it for all of the two months I stayed there after that. I had some of the highest claims per hour numbers and lowest error rates on her team.
I never developed any more tools for them. She didn’t deserve them.
I used to have to make two contracts for every person I brought on a traveling training team. I said two contracts were unnecessary and made them into one, sent it to our lawyers, and they approved it.
Still, it took me a long time to update each contract with different names, pay rates, and dates. So I went on an Excel forum and found out how to make a mailer list, and hours of work suddenly took me 10 minutes. I didn’t tell anyone this though, so I just took my time.
Then I had to make floor maps for restaurants to send to the company that puts them into our scheduling program. Well, all of our restaurants are cookie cutter, so I just used Paint to piece them together rather than make all of them each time. I’m a Picasso with Microsoft Paint.
Then they wanted me to use Excel to keep track of training teams. One of my co-workers used Smartsheet and loves to teach people things. So, I jump on Smartsheet with her and she shows me around.
It's way easier to publish it so that people can see the teams but not mess up any information. I used forms to avoid asking them 30 questions that auto-populate my Smartsheet and shared it with payroll so they never have to reach out to me.
I had templates on Outlook and tons of stuff. I basically took a lot of my job and realized there has to be an easier way. So I would ask on Reddit or just look things up, and spend maybe an hour learning something that will save me many hours in the future.
I always tell people to just look things up. They say “I don’t know what to look up” and I say “Whatever your problem is just search it up the exact same way you’d say it to me”. Then when they look up “Excel thing that makes this do that” they are shocked that they find their answer.
A few years ago, my mom was tasked with fixing my grandparent's toilet while we were visiting for the holidays. The toilet reservoir was constantly filling and running, and thus flooding the bathroom, because the buoy arm wasn't lifting high enough from the water in the reservoir to switch off the water flow.
My mom (who is normally a very practical person) had been tackling the issue for hours. She was pretty distraught, thinking we would have to order a new buoy arm, maybe even a new sensor, or switch and pull the whole assembly apart to replace everything.
She was planning out a trip to the store and pricing things out when I walked in. The solution was so simple. I took one look at it and bent the metal arm the buoy was attached to down so the arm had a slight upwards curve.
The buoy still reached the same level in the reservoir but registered on the sensor as higher because of the curve in the arm. Problem solved.
I watched it dawn on her what I had done, and she just looked at me like I had a third eye. She said, “I've been struggling with this thing for four hours and you fixed it in four seconds". She was very happy I saved her from more work and spending more money.
She calls me her “little toilet engineer" from time to time. I work on Aircraft, so it's mildly demeaning.
A co-worker of my husband's got locked in their office. He was out on a Friday night for a few drinks. He walked past the office on the way to the taxi stand and decided to pop into the office to use the washroom.
When he tried to leave, the magnetic lock on the door wouldn't release. This was one of those buildings where the ground floor was a separate unit, a separate business was on the first floor, and their office was on the second floor.
The only other way out was a rolled-up emergency evacuation ladder he could toss out one of the larger windows, but he was drinking and scared of heights so instead he sleeps in the break room.
The next morning, when the co-worker is still unable to leave, he calls my husband who lived nearby. My husband talked him through where to find the management keys and contact numbers for the security company but they were no help.
So, I grabbed our tool kit and my husband and I drove to find him. We get there and the co-worker is chatting through the letter box. Now, these two men are highly educated. The co-worker is a senior software developer with the company.
The first thing I say is "Sure it's a magnetic lock, so do you not have access to the breakers to cut the electric"? They both just stared at me. The breaker box was right beside the door, and all the co-worker had to do to all night was open it up and cut power.
Suddenly the letterbox closes, we hear the snap of the breaker being flipped off, and the door is open. We all laughed at the situation as he only then told us he'd been there overnight.
Since they both worked with software and it seemed to be a software fault, that's where they focused. But I just thought "door doesn't open because of the magnet, and the magnet needs power, so remove power".
Funny thing is, this is the second time I'd had to come down to that office and release someone trapped inside.
Serious About Scholarships
My girlfriend didn't realize most scholarships aren't even applied for, so they give it to whoever applies to it by default. With her help, I wrote four essays that were tweaked for each scholarship application.
I did the writing because I'm a writer by trade. By the time she transferred to her new college, she had an excess of $1,500 to spend every month. Because of that, she could focus on her studies instead of trying to balance a job on top.
Suddenly Irishblack and brown electric guitarPhoto by K. Mitch Hodge on Unsplash
When I applied to college, I applied for an Irish American scholarship. Turns out they had so few applicants they just gave me $40k towards my tuition. I have a secret, though. I am not even remotely Irish.
Never Hurts To Ask
I was at a private concert with maybe 50 people for a band that used to sell out stadiums. My friend was a huge fan but too shy to talk to the band. So, I dragged him up to the edge of the stage after the show and explained the situation to the lead singer.
He dragged my friend onto the stage and took his picture with the whole band. My friend had a great time. Sometimes it is that easy.
Right Place, Right Time
I went to the bar one night with some friends and ran into a girl who had worked for me a few years earlier. I said “hi” and we chatted for a minute. Then she asks me where my girlfriend is, so I let her know that we broke up a couple of months earlier.
Suddenly, she replies "Oh cool, well I'm here with my friends and I'm going to go hang out with them, but if you want to hang out after the bar closes, I've always liked you". I blinked about 10 times in a row before finally saying "That sounds awesome". We ended up having a great time.
This One Weight-Loss Trick Doctors Hate
I lost 25 pounds...and all I had to do was stop eating before bed.
Seriously, Did You Try Turning It On?
I was given a TV because the audio didn't work on it. On the back was a "sound on/off" button.
Did Somebody Say Free Electronics?trash against wallPhoto by Kevin Butz on Unsplash
When I was a kid, I used to regularly dumpster dive for electronics. The vast majority of electronics are thrown away because some minor part was broken. Often, it's as simple as a fuse.
From Home Cook To Chef
Turns out it’s so easy to learn to cook with raw ingredients. Throwing in random things that taste good together usually works as long as you understand what you like.
All It Takes Is A Personal Touch
I was recently looking for an apartment. Rent in my city, like most cities currently, is outrageous. So after three days of looking, I found this 2-bedroom apartment with a price that normally would get you a roach-infested one-bedroom/studio in a bad part of town.
But these apartments look nice and are in a good part of town. The reviews online are all positive. I can't figure out the catch! Then I saw a disappointing detail. I see there is a year-long wait list for this place. As a result, I decided to go to the leasing office directly.
After talking to the property manager, I get bumped to the top of the list for an apartment that becomes available next month. I keep waiting for the bottom to drop out. Most people spend months looking for places in my city and they'd be paying a third more than I'm paying at a minimum for a similar place.
I looked for 3 days and found this place, but I think I just got lucky and it was just that easy.
Did You Try Turning It On?
I worked on an almost five-million-dollar lighting rig for a concert as a junior guy on the job. We get it all plugged in and patched, but it all went so wrong. None of it would turn on. All the guys were freaking out trying to figure out why.
The team collectively had about 150 years of experience...yet no one checked to see if the generators were turned on. I was like “No way this is why but I'll just go check if the generators are good”. Flipped stuff on and voila.
One Man’s Junk, Another Man’s Treasure
When I was a kid in the 80s, my family was broke. Like, we were two paychecks away from living in our car. We actually did have to live in our car for a few months before my mom landed her job.
Anyway, imagine a single mother of three, who works three jobs just to make ends meet. I was just attending 8th grade, and I was playing in the back of our house. I noticed something in the dumpster that I hadn’t seen before.
I fished it out and brought it home. It was a computer. A monitor, keyboard, and a tower thing. At that time monitors sat on top of the box. And they were huge! Not to mention expensive. I managed to set it up and it was already booting into Windows 3.1.
When my mom got home, she was livid! She thought I had taken it from someone. We couldn't afford anything close to that. No way! But once she saw the grass stains on the side, she knew.
We had that computer for four years. It helped me in ways I can’t even believe. Because of that computer, my love of electronics and my curiosity flourished. No, I am not a computer technician now, but I am the resident computer nerd for my family.
I make a living online, and I attribute most of my knowledge to what I can Google. So yeah! It “was” that easy!
Arcade Awakeningbeach under blue sky and white clouds during daytimePhoto by Roland Denes on Unsplash
I was at Carolina Beach last summer around Memorial Day. We got to the boardwalk one afternoon and there was an arcade there.
I found this skill game where you have to press a button that moves a fixture with a razor on it. When you let the button go, the device stops and the razor snaps through the middle. There's a small string close to the glass. If you time it right, the razor cuts the string, and this huge door opens, and you get all the prizes in the machine.
I swiped my card to play, pressed the button, and held it before releasing it. Suddenly, the rope cuts and the doors open. My son was losing his mind, and I'm just regretting the next two hours where I have to lug this giant bear and box of sand castle toys all over the boardwalk.
I still have not decided if I'm a savant at this game, or if it’s just really easy.
Reddit user yourlastnames asked: 'what missing persons case is the most confusing / doesn’t add up?'
Content warning: suicide.
There are truly some strange unsolved cases out there, but there's nothing quite like hearing of a person who has vanished as if out of thin air.
While some of these cases have been explained away or even solved, there are some that remain a mystery that truly does not add up, no matter how the puzzle pieces fall.
Curious about these cases, in particular, Redditor yourlastnames asked:
"What missing persons case is the most confusing [to you] or just doesn't add up?"
The Last Ride of Terrance Williams
"Terrance Williams disappeared in 2004. He's the subject of a fascinating podcast called 'The Last Ride.'"
"The short version is that he was taken into custody in Naples, Florida, after being pulled over in the early hours for traffic violations. He was never seen again."
"The deputy that pulled him over tried to conceal the traffic stop even from his own organization, but staff opening a local business saw the whole thing."
"When the sheriff's department finally looked into it, they discovered the deputy was involved in a similar disappearance of a man named Felipe Santos in 2003. To this day the deputy claims no knowledge of Williams's whereabouts, despite being caught out in a series of lies."
Paddy Moriarty and Kellie
"Paddy Moriarty and his dog, Kellie. They went missing in an outback town in Australia with a population of 12 people."
"They were last seen leaving the pub riding his quad bike the one-kilometer distance to his house. He or his dog have never been found and no one has been charged in relation to his disappearance."
Susan Powell and Family
"Susan Powell went missing from her home in West Valley, Utah, on December 6, 2009."
"She is presumably dead. Her husband, Josh, was the main suspect and just a real piece of work. No one knows what really happened to her."
"Sadly in 2012, Josh murdered their kids and committed suicide after Susan’s parents gained custody of the kids."
"This case is so frustrating since his brother and father are both dead too. We’ll never know what happened to Susan, but I’m positive she’s in an old mine shaft somewhere. F**k Josh Powell."
The Last Call from Brandon Swanson
"Brandon Swanson. He drove into a ditch and called his parents for help. They stayed on the phone with him for 47 minutes while they drove around looking for him."
"They heard him say, 'Oh s**t,' and then the phone went silent. They eventually found his car far away from where he said he was but he was never found."
"Reading this was absolutely chilling. It seems at first glance that it's most likely he drowned, but that really doesn't make sense because the water was only 10 feet deep and they would have found the body."
"He just suddenly said, 'OH S**T!' and the phone went silent, but he did not hang up. The phone call continued with total silence from his end. What the f**k happened to him?"
Babysitter Mar Lou Bostwick
"Mary Lou Bostwick. She disappeared July 18, 1972, from Waverly, New York. She was dropped off by her dad to babysit at a friend's house. This was also her 16th birthday. Her mom stopped by later with a cake and presents."
"The people in the apartment told her that Mary never showed up. However, her bag was in the residence. Nothing else was ever found."
"There was another girl around the same age, Sharon Coston, who was abducted and murdered in a nearby town about a year later. October 1983 in Sayre, Pennsylvania."
"There was a man convicted of that, but he always denied doing anything to Mary. One of the people who testified against him and was given immunity was a suspect in Mary's case. Mary's mom thinks there's a connection, but nothing was ever really found."
"I've sadly never seen anyone cover her disappearance on any of the podcasts or YouTube shows."
Derek Seehausen of San Diego
"Derek Seehausen. My friend was dating him at the time of his disappearance, and he was actively planning his future in medicine, and was last seen in San Diego."
"I saw him about two months before he disappeared. Please send any tips."
The Beaumont Children
"The Beaumont Children. Three kids go to the beach, are seen with a mystery man, and never make it back home."
"Never found out who the man was or where they went. Their parents just recently died without ever getting any closure."
Xavier Dupont de Ligonnes
"Xavier Dupont de Ligonnes. The whole family (parents and four kids) went missing overnight in 2011."
"Employers, schools, and the extended family received weird letters informing of their absence or departure (one of them saying they are going into a witness protection program). Two weeks later they found the corpses of the mother, the kids, and the dog hidden behind the house."
"They investigated and retraced the father’s whereabouts in the south of France. He was last seen leaving a hotel a few days before. The region was thoroughly searched, but he was never to be found."
Branson Perry of Skidmore
"Branson Perry, aged 20, disappeared from Skidmore, Missouri in April 2001."
"He was working on his house with a friend, went to the shed to grab some power cords, and was never seen again."
The Incomplete Story of Marshall Iwassa
"Marshall Iwassa. Good guy."
"He came back to his hometown to visit his family and friends, and everything by all accounts was good. He left to take the two-hour drive to where he was living and never made it. Instead, it was recorded he spent the entire night trying to get into his storage unit and then nothing."
"A week or maybe more, his truck was found 12 hours away on a back road in the middle of the woods burnt to a crisp with belongings thrown about everywhere, no sign of Marshal."
"From what I remember, the family was adamant that some of the things inside the truck, burnt or not, were missing, things they knew he had. The truck was even missing parts."
"It's been four years and there's never been answers. It makes me sad and fearful of long travels. From what I know of him, he was a fantastic friend; I hope they get closure one day."
Out Shopping Asha Degree
"She went missing at the age of nine from Shelby, North Carolina, United States. In the early morning hours of February 14, 2000, for reasons unknown, she packed her bookbag, left her family home north of the city, and began walking along nearby North Carolina Highway 18 despite heavy rain and wind."
"Several passing motorists saw her; when one turned around at a point 1.3 miles (2.1 km) from her home and began to approach her, she left the roadside and ran into a wooded area."
"In the morning, her parents discovered her missing from her bedroom. No one has seen her since."
The Vanishing Marion Barter
"Marion Barter here in Australia."
"She boarded a plane overseas in 1997 and changed her name beforehand (didn't tell family). She apparently came back to Australia for a few days (according to passenger records) and completely disappeared."
"It's an ongoing investigation at the moment, there is a podcast about it called, 'The Lady Vanishes,' featuring her daughter."
"It's so tragically fascinating."
The Grieving Bryce Laspisa
"He was driving to his parents' house (three hours) after an argument with his girlfriend, apparently due to his alcohol and video game addiction and abuse of prescription medication."
"Partway through the drive, he pulled off the highway and just sat there… from 9:00 AM to 3:'00 PM."
"A roadside assistance guy checked on him twice and said he seemed fine and coherent, and Bryce told him he would be carrying on back to his parents shortly."
"Sometime later, his car was found only a few miles away, driven off the embankment, and he was nowhere to be found. They never found him."
News Anchor Jodi Huisentruit
"Jodi Huisentruit was a news anchor who disappeared in the early morning in Mason City, Iowa."
"There were signs that she was abducted and the investigation is still ongoing with new leads nearly 30 years later."
Three-Year-Old William Tyrrell
"William Tyrrell. In 2014, the three-year-old boy went missing from his foster grandmother's yard whilst playing with his sister. His foster mother and foster grandmother were apparently watching them play outside, and the foster mother went inside to make a cup of tea."
"They then noticed they hadn’t seen or heard him in a while and searched the house and yard."
"In 2021, police began searching national parkland near the grandmother's home for human remains. They also revealed that the foster mother and grandmother were persons of interest in his presumed death."
"Earlier today, the foster mother pled not guilty to assaulting another foster child that was in her care (a 10-year-old girl). She has also been charged with intimidating and stalking a minor. Her husband has also been charged with the same crimes, but plead not guilty to all counts. The foster grandmother is now dead."
"Basically, police believe that William died whilst in the care of the foster family, and they disposed of his body to cover it up. Police are recommending that the foster parents be charged with perverting the course of justice and interfering with a corpse."
"His photos went viral at the time of the 'disappearance,' and he went missing whilst in a Spiderman costume, and the photo that was distributed was taken minutes before."
These stories are truly haunting, and it's no wonder that Redditors have worried themselves with what might have happened to these missing people.
We can only hope that answers come for at least some of these cases and that their closest loved ones achieve some sense of closure eventually.
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988.To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
The realization you're getting older can smack you in the face at any given time, and boy-howdy is it fun!
It can be in the morning when you get up out of bed, and your body makes crackling noises, or when you can't seem to keep up at the gym and you cut short your running time on the treadmill.
That's just the physical.
When you suddenly have the epiphany that you're suddenly the oldest one in a group setting, it's humbling.
Curious to hear from strangers online who are no longer the young whipper-snappers they imagined themselves to eternally be, Redditor redmambo_no6 asked:
"Redditors with younger coworkers, what was your 'I’m officially old' moment?"
These moments of realization never get old. But people do.
"My childhood cat lived to 21.5 so teaching (freshman biology lab, so students were ~18) became very weird when I realized my cat was older than my students."
Aging In Reverse
"I'm a preschool teacher. It's been a TRIP to watch parents go from Soooo much older than me, to the same age as me, and now they're younger than me!?!?"
The Shook Pediatrician
"My kids pediatrician was also my husband's pediatrician when he was a kid. He was the first kid she had to come back as a parent and she was SHOOK."
"See, that's what really kinda drives it home for me."
"I'm not bothered that I'm 48. But that means my school friends are 48, and that's weird for some reason. Like, I went to school with a guy who was wild and crazy. That guy is 48 now, and has a new grandbaby. Somehow, he's old, and I'm just 'getting up there '."
Relics of the past don't just pertain to humans.
Dialing It In
"Had a co-worker ask me, 'Back before cell phones, did you just have to wait around at your house for a call?' Uh, yeah, pretty much."
"Reminds me of having to explain the concept of collect calls to my kids. The whole speed speaking where you were for pick up during the recording so your Mama never accepted the collect call."
"Various colleagues were debating whether the Concorde had been real. They couldn’t fathom that supersonic civilian aircraft used to exist and now they don’t anymore."
"The Concorde last flew in 2003, when these colleagues were toddlers."
"We were talking about where we were on 9/11, and my coworker went quiet. He wasn’t even born."
"We also had a band that was famous in the 90s stay at the hotel, and he had no idea who they were, meanwhile I was so star struck as they were my entire childhood!"
Gravity is not our friend, and not just because of its effect on our faces.
The Day It Went Downhill
"When i fell down the last couple of steps on a stairway. No one pointed and laughed like I expected, instead they helped me up and asked me if I was okay. That’s when I knew."
It's About The Recovery
"F'k. That has to be a bummer."
"You fall. You know you're fine. You feel like an idiot. You get ready to wave to the crowd as they laugh and clap. But then... a hand is placed on your arm and you hear 'that was a big fall, are you ok?' You stay in shock for a moment. Of course, you're fine. Everyone is looking at you. They all have concerned faces. Sh*t. Two weeks later, the soreness finally subsides."
Ice Slip, You Slip, We All Slip
"This happened to me as well....walking my dog the day after a huge snowstorm. There were some rowdy teenage boys having a snowball fight across the street (schools were closed that day, of course). I slipped on the ice, my feet flew over my head and I landed solidly on my backside. As I struggled to get up I braced myself for the laughter and catcalls, but all I heard was "Are you OK Ma'am??' 'Do you need help??' I was in my early 50s and had never felt 'old' until that moment."
Conversations with younger coworkers can be fun.
You can quote lines from your favorite TV shows and talk about the latest CD you bought at Target and brag about your new digital camera that takes better pictures than a smartphone.
And then you can watch the blank expressions on your coworkers' faces because they haven't a clue about what you speak.
Yeah. This has never happened to me...
The art of tattooing has been practiced across the globe since at least Neolithic times, as evidenced by mummified skin, art and the archaeological artifacts.
The oldest tattooed human skin was found on the body of Ötzi the Iceman from between 3370 and 3100 BC.
Tattooed mummies were recovered in almost 50 archaeological digs across the Earth with locations in Greenland, Alaska, Siberia, Mongolia, western China, Egypt, Sudan, the Philippines and the Andes.
But while advancements in tools and inks have opened up endless possibilities for body art, some designs have garnered a bad reputation.
A Redditor asked:
"What tattoo is a red flag?"
Names Are For Relatives Only!
"Your girlfriend’s name tattooed after only 4 weeks of the relationship."
"My younger sister got 'Mrs *boyfriend’s name*' tattooed on her wrist when she was 16 or 17. I think she made a fake birth certificate to get it."
"The boyfriend later broke up with her when she was in rehab."
"Hooked up with a guy who had his own name tattooed on his ribs.
"His own full name. He ended up being a psychopath."
"I've met 3 dudes so far that have their last names tatted on them."
"Two were in the exact same Gothic font (I met them years and thousands of miles apart). One had est.[birth year] underneath it..."
"Both were huge too, one across the chest, the other across his back. Both dudes were massive tools."
"The 3rd guy had it small on his bicep and doesn't like it anymore."
Red Flag, Literally
"My ex husband literally got a red flag tattooed on his wrist."
"I had no idea he did it until I saw it one day. I asked why he got it and he said it was a 'reminder' to himself to not make impulsive, rash decisions."
"He filed for divorce and moved in with his mistress two months later."
"The red flag tattoo was apt as f'k, apparently."
"My daughter's ex had:"
"A ring of thorns on his forehead, like he was trying to look like Jesus"
"A 'not Nazi eagle' that looked exactly like a Nazi eagle on his abdomen"
Sealed With A 💋
"lipstick kiss on the neck"
"My old neighbor had this. One night SWAT showed up..."
"My buddy had this too, he went to prison for [drug] related crimes."
"My old coworker had this too, he got fired for getting high in the freezer."
"Also had a coworker of this ilk, proudly showed videos of him shooting a teddy bear on his couch. In his apartment. Just a grade A bozo."
"I’m sensing a theme here."
Cell Block Special
"I saw a woman at a water park with her toddler."
"She had a tattoo that said 'Trust no b*tches, love no hoes'."
"In my bones, I feel there is no way you could have that tattoo if you haven’t been to prison at least once."
"Chester Cheetah having sex with a Smurf."
"But which Smurf?"
Probably Not a Tribute to Her Father
"I met a lady with a 'Daddy' tattoo on her forehead. My gut told me right away that she was trouble."
"She went on a camping trip with us and mixed alcohol and drugs and went into an abusive rage."
"We ended up having to have the sheriff escort her out of our camp. Total sh*tshow."
It's All About Location, Location, Location
"I mean, come on, if the first warning sign about a forehead tattoo isn't that it's a FOREHEAD TATTOO, there's bigger issues at play here."
"Especially if it literally says 'POOR IMPULSE CONTROL'."
Why So Glum, Chum?
"Joker's smile on the back of the hand."
Take a Bow 🎀
"I’ve never met a girl I liked with bows tattooed on the back of her thighs."
Anti-Heroes, We Hope
"Tattoos of very questionable people….like Eichmann or Jeffrey Dahmer."
"Or a giant back tattoo of Richard Nixon."
"That's oddly specific."
"They're referring to Roger Stone, who, in fact, has a giant back tattoo of Richard Nixon."
~ The-Beer-BaronRichard Nixon GIF by GIPHY NewsGiphy
Why Not a Brand?
"When a girl has a 'Property of (guy's name)'."
"I know a dude that has an odd assortment of Adult Swim characters tattooed on their back, mostly from Aqua Teen."
"They're bad in general, but the worst part is that they're just kinda placed randomly, not in a cohesive group or anything."
"Similar to how you might expect a kid to place stickers on their bedroom door because they weren't sure where else to put them."
~ LolYouFkingLoseraqua teen hunger force GIFGiphy
"That joke is so old, Jesus told it at the Last Supper."
Red Flag, Literally—Part 2
"A Chinese flag tattoo is definitely a red flag."
"A Swiss flag is also a big plus."
"An Austrian flag is a minus though."
"A German flag is a big… um… three colored stripes?"
"This is hard...."
~ Poorly-Drawn-BeagleFlowing China GIFGiphy
Art—including body art—is subjective.
But before you get that ink, you might want to make sure it sends the message you want.
"I shall do by my patients as I would be done by; shall obtain consultation whenever I or they desire; shall include them to the extent they wish in all important decisions; and shall minimize suffering whenever a cure cannot be obtained, understanding that a dignified death is an important goal in everyone's life."
~ English translation of the modern abridged Hippocratic Oath
It is the hope of those seeking medical help that the medical professionals providing it will be just that—professional.
But no profession is immune to bad days, bad attitudes or bad apples.
Reddit user Monsah asked:
"What is the most unprofessional thing a doctor has said to you?"
"I was being treated on week 2 with medication for an ectopic pregnancy—fetus in the fallopian tube, 0% chance for baby, very small chance for myself to live if not taken care of. I was told to go to the ER if I developed severe pain."
"I developed severe pain and went to the ER."
"The doctor on call sat there and tried to casually discuss what kind of pain meds I might like WITH MY HUSBAND as I was writhing in pain on the bed. Husband insists doc should just make a decision and give me the meds now."
"Finally gave me a pain pill and told me no need for an ultrasound, just did some bloodwork for my file. I go home and wait it out with a script for pain meds."
"I told him the pain was severe and could be the tube bursting and he told me that miscarriages just hurt."
"I went into the gyno treating me 2 days later and he took one look at me and booked me for emergency surgery. The tube had burst and I had so much internal bleeding that they had to have a general surgeon assist in the cleanup in my abdomen."
"My bowels were adhering to the broken tube and had to be carefully separated. Later, my doc told me I was very lucky and the moron at the ER should have sent me in to an ultrasound based on the pain alone."
"The blood work was apparently alarming."
"Went back for an IV to the same sh*tty ER a few months after. That same sh*t ER doc checked my abdomen and saw the surgery scars."
"He commented I must have recently had an operation!"
"I told him 'yeah, you misdiagnosed my burst ectopic pregnancy and I had to get emergency surgery at a different hospital'. He didn't say sh*t after that."
"If I had the money, I would sue the a**hole."
"I also had an ectopic several years ago. I had missed my period and suspected being pregnant."
"A week later had severe pain where I couldn’t stand up and walk and wasn’t sure if it was my period coming on. Went to an urgent care and they confirmed I was pregnant but probably having a miscarriage."
"The pain was bad in my side, and I even suspected ectopic—but the male doctor there said miscarriages are painful and he knows what ectopic pain should look like, and that’s definitely not what I have."
"He told me to go home and just basically rest."
"So I believed him, and headed out—a nurse, female, stopped me in the front lobby and strongly insisted I go to the ER. My husband also wouldn’t let me just brush it off and took me in."
"At the ER they did an ultrasound and my entire abdomen was filled with fluid. I had emergency surgery and got really lucky with a rare ectopic that exploded backwards into my peritoneal cavity (called a tubal abortion) and got away without a ruptured ovary."
"The female surgeon said that in her 20 year career she had never seen a case like mine."
"Still sucked, and f'k that first doctor."
"Doctor said that either I cheated or my husband did because that kind of cervical pain was always chlamydia."
"It was an ectopic pregnancy that ruptured and resulted in emergency life-saving surgery. But thanks for listening doctor!"
"My personal OB happened to be at the hospital that night and came to tell me the news herself, giving him the angriest look I’ve ever seen in a professional setting."
"I’d been sent by ambulance from our local urgent care to a hospital due to kidney pain and a funny shadow on my xray. Emergency room doctor was insistent 'it must be a STI' despite me having no genital symptoms, and he demanded to do a pelvic exam."
"This doctor aggressively tried to mimic my pain from the inside by jamming his hand up my vag. The nurse chaperone looked embarrassed when I said to the doctor, 'if you’re not careful, you’ll lose your watch up there'."
"He then discharged me from the hospital at 3 am saying he couldn’t find anything wrong with me."
"At 9 am the original urgent care doc called back since she saw I was discharged but my blood tests were back and I was septic."
"My older sister had unbearable GI issues for years growing up."
"Pediatrician told our parents that 'children get tummy aches' and to try peppermint Altoids.
"She ended up having emergency surgery where they had to remove her entire large intestine because it was necrotic and had tumors.
"Permanent colostomy by the time she was 14."
"Both my parents are doctors, a Pediatrician and a Pulmonologist/ICU doc."
"Since 4TH GRADE I’d had very frequent upset stomachs and pain. I was always told 'it can just happen' or 'it’s too hard to figure out'."
"It got to the point where when I had BLEEDING from my intestines I didn’t want to say anything cause I thought I’d be brushed off. This was until I was going into my senior year of high school."
"It flared to the point I couldn’t move and lost 15 pounds in 2 weeks."
"Lo and behold, I had Ulcerative Colitis that was diagnosed within a day of tests it was so bad."
"I had been bleeding for 8 months when my GP told me I 'didn't meet the criteria' for a colonoscopy."
"Finally did get diagnosed with mild ulcerative colitis later on, but that conversation with the GP was the most frustrating part of the whole saga."
"'It can't be colon cancer because you're too young'."
"My brother got cancer at that exact age, as she knew."
"The really f'ked up thing about this one is that it's standard procedure to monitor for colon cancer based on family history."
"Generally guidelines recommend if a first degree family member (mom, dad, brother, sister) had colon cancer before they were elderly, they should start getting screened at an age 10 years younger than when they were diagnosed."
"So that doctor straight up ignored national treatment guidelines."
"My younger sister was diagnosed with stage 4 colorectal cancer at 26 (not a typo, that's twenty six.) And it took her a couple of years to convince her doc to order any tests, despite passing blood in her stool."
"I get that she was especially young to have such an advanced case, but I will never not be angry when I read a comment about docs telling folks that they are too young to be checked for colon cancer."
"I took my then 4-year-old daughter to a pediatric gastroenterologist. First he said 'she's just being dramatic'."
"Then he said, 'well, she'll get married some day and be someone else's problem'."
"That was 25 years ago, and it still shocks me!"
"Turned out she had a partial bowel obstruction."
"When I took my then 4-year-old to a pediatric gastroenterologist because she still couldn't control her bowels and clearly had no feeling down there, the specialist told me she was doing it for attention and just didn't 'want to' use the toilet."
"She went on and on about how she'd been in the business for 20 years. When my daughter told her she really wanted to fix the problem so she could go to day camp, the doctor told her she was lying."
"That human turd was in the room when I finally got my daughter tested for bowel insensitivity (I don't remember the official name) and they found out that she did not, in fact, have any feeling in her bowels."
"I looked that b*tch in the face and said, 'Now do you believe us?' She just looked away."
"'You're 27. I don't know what you have to be anxious about'."
"This was in the 1990s."
"When I described my anxiety and depression the doctor said, 'but you aren’t overweight and over thirty!'."
"I was told the same just a few months ago at age 25."
"I replied 'well my mom just died' to which he said 'that’s too bad' and continued on with the exam."
"'That's normal in your line of work. Just ignore it, the pain will go away'."
"I went in for shoulder pain, as my left shoulder would be killing me after a day loading trucks all day. This was an ongoing thing for weeks before I went to get it checked."
"Didn't examine my shoulder. Didn't have any x-rays done, catscans done, MRIs done, nothing. Hell, didn't even have me take my shirt off."
"Turns out that I had a torn rotator cuff."
"Had another doc tell me that the stomach pain that had me pissing myself, throwing up, and passing out was from 'gas'."
"Again, without any type of examination, just listening to the symptoms. Two days later I was dying on the OR table from a necrotic appendix."
A common theme in all these stories are doctors not listening to their patients or their parents.
While a doctor may be a medical expert, they should remember the patient is the expert for their own body.