Give A Little, Get a Lot: These Kind Acts Warmed Our Hearts
We could all use a little love and care, but sometimes kind gestures come from the most unexpected places. Whether it’s a friend showing up at our door to give us the present we didn’t know we needed, or a complete stranger helping us out in a time of need, these stories about the nicest thing someone has ever done will warm your heart.
Face the Musica young man sitting at a piano in the darkPhoto by Kiwihug on Unsplash
When I was about 13, the pastor of our family church heard me practicing Chopin on the piano. Knowing my parents couldn't afford much, he offered to pay for my music studies so that I'd be prepared to enter music conservatory right after high school. All he asked for in return was that I'd help out with the church's music program when needed.
This kind, generous man spent thousands of his own dollars to help me along the way to a rewarding career in music.
Sleep Away Camp
When my parents were awful, and my sister was passing away, my friend’s parents took me in for a while. But it was even better than that. You see, they did it in a way that seemed like a sleepover, even though it went on for months. I didn't even realize until I was an adult how much they stepped up for me and protected me, right when I needed them the most.
Lean on Me
I had a sore leg, and it was sore enough that I couldn't put much weight on it. During this time, my school did this fundraiser run, and I wanted to participate even though I could barely walk. My best friend, who I'm still friends with to this day, stayed by my side, limping the whole way. I still thank him for that, it meant a lot to me.
To Serve and Protect
When I was 16, I was at a store getting some comics. I was 15 cents shy, because they raised the price by 5 cents a comic, and I was trying to decide which one to put back when a guy I went to high school with, and barely knew, gave me a fifty cent piece. He went on to join the Marines right out of high school, and retired a couple of years ago.
He's still just as awesome now. He restores old Volkswagens and sells them for cost to his fellow veterans. He restores old furniture and donates the pieces to families in need. He volunteers with wildlife rescue programs. He refuses to let me pay him back, so I'm going to try and buy his drink at our 30-year high school reunion. Gotta thank him somehow!
Something for Nothing
I went to a local breakfast spot one day after a rough night. I totally forgot my wallet, so I left my phone as collateral and went back to my house. When I came back, some guy had already paid for me. I know it doesn't seem that big of a deal, but it was a pretty bleak week for me so it meant a lot just to have someone do something for nothing.
A Friend Foreverboy feeding a animal during daytimePhoto by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash
My wife and I were driving our kids, who were three and five at the time, to the zoo. We narrowly missed being smushed by a semi truck, but also almost flipped our top-heavy minivan doing 75mph when dodging said vehicle. All in all, we were very blessed to have our lives, let alone no damage to our car. The same couldn't be said for other cars, but no one was hurt either.
The State Trooper who showed up was the most generous young man. He gave my daughter a little teddy bear that she still has to this day 5-6 years later. She even remembers getting it, which is pretty incredible for someone that age. I think that was the most meaningful thing anyone's done for me, and I've been fortunate enough to have a lot of good people in my life. This one stands out because it was directed towards my daughter.
I’ve Got You, Babe
My mother passed, and I was so stressed trying to find a way to give her the funeral she deserved. My boyfriend went down to the funeral home, made the arrangements, and paid the balance. By FAR the kindest thing anyone has ever done for me.
A Helping Hand
My firstborn had a severe deformity, and spent a week in hospital before we took him off life support. I was staying at the Ronald McDonald House, and even though one of the rules was that you are your own maid when you leave, complete with doing laundry and remaking the beds, I was a complete wreck and couldn’t do a thing. Then I got the surprise of my life.
A kind stranger took care of my room for me even though they were going through their own stuff. Another blessing from that dark time is that the funeral home took care of everything for me, including all bills associated with the service and cremation. I will never not donate to the Ronald McDonald House and I know what funeral home I'll be using when I one day need one again.
It was a very long time ago and very dark sad time. It destroyed my family, a few years later I lost my husband to the depression that happened from this, and while both tragedies changed me, I'm very good now and know happiness. I want to say that I've thought about how very, very bad things can get in the world, but this stranger, and people like him, showed me daily that the world is full of amazing loving people.
A Little Tune-up
A few years ago, I was going down to visit my grandmother in South Carolina. I needed an inspection and oil change on my car, and I was the single mom of a 5-year-old. The total cost ended up being 40 dollars more than I thought. At the time, that was devastating, and I had to tell my daughter in the parking lot that we couldn't go see her grandmother anymore.
Someone heard me talking to her and came over to us and gave us 60 dollars. That was one of the nicest things someone I don’t know has ever done for me.
Can’t Put a Price on Education
On September 14, 1986, my dad dropped me off at boarding school and gave me a five-dollar bill. I never heard from him again. He never paid my tuition bill. So, from the age of 14, I took every job I could get and worked my way through. At $4 an hour, I didn't even come close to paying off my entire bill, but the school let me stick around because I was a model student in and out of the classroom.
We get to graduation. I opened my little diploma thing expecting to see a bill in five figures. Instead there was a note: “Congratulations on your graduation. A group of us who believe in you and love you have taken care of your bill. We are proud to present you with your diploma.” I later found out that one of my friend's dad, a fairly well-off dentist, went fundraising among his golf buddies because he didn’t want to see me enter life at 18 under crushing debt.
The Tables Have Turnedpeople around tablePhoto by Zach Reiner on Unsplash
One of my high school tormentors invited me to his house to hang out for a day. I was really nervous it might just be to screw with me, but I was desperate for some sort of friendship at the time, so I went over. We're now best friends, and he and his family feels like family to me. Honestly, I have no idea how we ever disliked each other.
The New Normal
I was hugely pregnant and had very young children with me. We went to a free exhibit at an aquarium down town. I was unfamiliar with the area, but found free parking several blocks away. I was broke, so finding a free exhibit with free parking was really a special outing for us. After the exhibit, my young children and I started walking towards the car, but couldn't find it.
I figured I had gotten turned around, so we returned to the aquarium and started walking in the other direction, but still couldn't find the car. We went back and started out in a third direction, still unable to find our car. It had started to rain and we were just lost. All along, a homeless man had been watching us, as we had passed by him multiple times in our search.
His words were heartbreaking. He told me he remembered seeing us first go in to the aquarium hours ago and what direction he saw us come from. He offered to walk down that way and look for our car for us so we didn't have to be walking around aimlessly until the car was located. I thanked him, but turned his offer down, not wanting to send this homeless man out into the rain.
He told me he was impressed with how well-behaved my children were, and he offered a dollar to buy them a candy bar. I couldn't accept, I mean how horrible of a person would I be to take money from someone who clearly needed it more than me—but he insisted. He said the dollar wouldn't save him from being homeless, but buying my kids a candy bar for being so patient and well-behaved would make him feel normal and some days he just needed to feel normal.
It was an act of kindness I will never forget. I think of that gentleman often.
From Beyond the Grave
My grandmother made a ton of birthday cards in advance. After she passed, I still received birthday cards from her for the next few years. It was a little weird, but I cried happy tears whenever I got to read words from her after she passed.
Duty of Care
A paramedic helped me after I was in a car crash. He took his time to come back to the car and bring me back my front tooth, which was really tiny and he offered to go and look for in the wreck. At the same time, he found and brought back my partner's phone. I don't know his name, and I was in such a state of shock that I can't even remember what he looked like.
Still, he put my tooth in a special liquid and the hospital team managed to put it back, saving me a lot of money. There was also a woman officer who put a blanket on me and made sure I kept it. The hospital only managed to take it off me right before I left. It was a green standard first aid blanket, and I don't know why I refused to let go of it (again, shock) but it provided a lot of comfort. Thank you so much, guys.
Get Away From It All
The nicest thing someone I know has done was for someone else. My brother took a fellow band nerd on a high school graduation road trip for several weeks. Thing is, the friend was dying of leukemia, and they both knew that this was going to be his first and last road trip. No timetable, just one day at a time across the breadth of the US.
Found in Translationpeople walking on street during night timePhoto by Yu Kato on Unsplash
I worked in Korea for a bit. It was late at night, and I decided to surprise a girl I was talking to by heading to her apartment. It was around 10:30, and unbeknownst to me, the subway stopped running at 11:00. Unfortunately, I was halfway there, so I decided to message her. She told me to take a specific bus to get to her place. I get on the bus, and I don't have the slightest idea which stop I should be getting off on.
Well, about 10 minutes later, a load of people get off on this one stop. An older Korean businessman sees me and motions to me that there's an available seat next to him. He starts talking to me in English and he says that the stop where I'm getting off is one stop before he gets off, and that he'll let me know when. We start a conversation about where he works, how he learned English, what I'm doing in Korea.
By the time we knew it, his stop came up. He profusely apologized to me and said that it was the stop before. I said, "It's okay, I'll just walk the opposite direction." As we get off the bus, we're both walking in the same direction. As we come up to an intersection, he flags down a taxi, tells him the subway station to drop me off on, and he paid the fare. All this while still apologizing to me. That guy was just such a good person, you know?
Moms Just Know
I was involved in a hit and run on my bicycle in Chicago. I broke my collarbone, and a stranger drove me to the ER. I was going into shock and freaking out about finances—I’m a single mother. The stranger gave me her number for the report and such, but then she made a gesture I’ll never forget. She later sent me $5k because she knows what it’s like to be a single mother with nothing.
I sobbed. I hadn’t gotten my unemployment yet. I was overwhelmed by her kindness.
Friends With Benefits
I was having a panic attack for the first time. It swung between so euphoric I thought I was going to "ascend" and terrified that my life was going to end in pain. I called my loved ones to say goodbye, including my best friend. He came running from a block away. He was terrified too, but he held it together, sat me down, hugged me, told me that he didn't want me to go anywhere, and that he needed me right here.
I needed that. I needed to see what I felt wasn't based on reality, needed someone to say that I should not obey those feelings because I was needed and loved. On some level, he saved me. Years later, he voluntarily went into homelessness just to fly out to see me on another continent. Yes, we're together now romantically. No, I don't know how I got so lucky. We're planning the wedding. :)
The Art of Caring
When I was a freshman in high school, I took an art class that was a mix of 9th-12th graders. I was really bad with people back then, so I spent most of class sitting on the floor between the trash can and the drying racks and never speaking to anyone. Still, there was this one 11th-grade guy who would always make it a point to talk to me.
He didn't know me or anything; he just happened to sit near me. But he'd always ask about my day or compliment my art or offer to help me with my math homework. At one point, he even managed to get me to sit at the desk with the rest of the students. It's just one of those things I think about from time to time because he really had every right to ignore me like everyone else did, but he didn't. He really made art class into a second home for me. I miss that guy.
It’s the Little Things
I have an online friend in another country, and one time she made a cake for my birthday with my name on it because she knew no one else would do anything.
Know Your Worthwomen's blue dress shirtPhoto by Tra Nguyen on Unsplash
During my Physics graduate program, there was a terrible professor for two of my core classes. He was terrible at teaching, but also known for complaining at faculty meetings how the grades had been going down in his classes ever since more women started taking them. I put in a ton of work anyway, and despite all that he gave me two Ds for those two classes. I’ve honestly never heard of someone getting Ds in grad school and finishing, so I was convinced my life was over. Then, I learned that I was so, so wrong.
At that point, I told another professor who had been supportive what happened, and he got me a stiff drink to talk it over. In that meeting, he said that technically there was no requirement to take the guy’s classes. Instead, he told me to sign up for two independent study classes, which he would supervise, and all I would be doing is practice questions for the qualifying exam.
So we did exactly that—I studied, and we would meet up a few times a week to go over problems. By the end of the semester, I took my qualifiers, and passed with margins to spare. Today, I’m a postdoctoral fellow in astronomy at Harvard, which never would have happened if that professor hadn’t taken a chance on me and put in so many hours to help me.
It makes me so determined to help all the students in my path and mentor them as well, because people can be so much more than one bad professor thinks they are.
I had just had my father completely cut ties with me after years of estrangement and him being super distant. Obviously, I was a little emotionally uneasy about how “final” it felt, and the implications for the distant future. My live-in girlfriend knew, told her mom, and her mom sent me a bunch of snacks I’ve always wanted to try but never wanted to spend the money on.
Instant mood lifter, and it restated the fact in my mind that there are other people who care about me even if my dad doesn’t.
Pikachu, I Don’t Choose You
When I was like nine, I went to an arcade over in San Antonio, Texas because we were there for a vacation. There was this claw machine that had pokemon in it, and I was aiming for my favorite pokemon ever, but accidentally got a different one. The employee comes around to unlock the thing so I can get my prize. I whine to my mom, "Aw I wanted the Charizard though."
This dude puts the other one back in there, and hands me the one I wanted. I will forever remember you, bro.
Work to Live
My one co-worker got all my other co-workers to donate money for a gift to me from my hugely underpaid apprenticeship. I received $350, which was exactly how much I needed for an upcoming bill. It really saved me when I had literally $0.70 in my account. A few weeks earlier, actually, a different co-worker noticed me not eating and bought me lunch, then many of them brought me leftovers. That apprenticeship was the worst, but the people were the best.
The Good Neighbor
His name is Duong. When I was in university, he was my neighbor. I got into a motorbike accident and couldn’t go to class by myself, so he put me up on his back and brought me to the class like a hero. When my elevator was broken, he climbed all 13 floors to bring me dinner because he knew I couldn’t go out to get it. Whoever is with him for the rest of his life is a lucky person.
Child’s Playassorted color of wicker baskets on displayPhoto by zakariae daoui on Unsplash
I was walking through the streets of Marrakech after it had just rained, and I was wearing those flimsy flip-flops, so all the wet sand from the street was being catapulted onto the back of my legs. Out of nowhere, I feel a tap on my arm. It’s a young Moroccan girl, not older than 6 or 7 years old, offering me her water bottle to clean my legs.
I politely declined because I could never accept to take someone’s water in that scorching heat, but thanked her and her mother profusely. Children are so pure.
Do the Math
I went to a very small school with a bunch of really amazing math teachers, and one really bad math teacher. For example, she tried to sue a kid for "aggressively swinging his backpack" at her when she threw him out of the classroom for something trivial. He had only picked up his backpack in a completely normal manner.
I was slated to have pre-calc with the terrible teacher the following year and was complaining about it to my amazing math teacher, saying how much I was dreading her class. That’s when I got the offer of a lifetime. My amazing math teacher offered to teach me pre-calc over the summer so I could skip a year of math and go straight to calc with the amazing teacher.
So, once a week, each week over the summer, I met my amazing teacher in her back garden, where we had tea and cookies and she taught me pre-calc. A week before school started, I met with horrible teacher and took her pre-calc final, aced it, and got to stick with amazing teacher. I’ll always be grateful someone cared enough about that.
Growing up, I was severely neglected and had no friends due to my lack of hygiene and social skills. One of my teacher aids got wise to it, and brought me to her house to play with her daughter, took me on family trips with them, gave me clean clothes, and just showed me an insane amount of kindness I'll never be able to repay.
Through Thick and Thin
I was fired from my last job. It was the first and only time I had been fired, and it sucked. I really liked that job, and I got super depressed. My friend also lost his job later that week, which really sucked because I knew he loved that job, too. He would always tell me that it was his dream job. And right as soon as he found out, he called me.
He called me to tell me that even though he lost his job, he knew he was going to be alright. He wanted to tell me that to set a good example. I knew he was heartbroken, but he put on a strong face for me. And I'll never forget that. Never.
I’ve never been able to celebrate my birthday. Between my awful mom and horrible relationships, it’s just become a tradition to lie in bed and cry every year. Well this year, my best friend and boyfriend put their heads together and threw me a surprise “party.” They decorated our apartment, baked me a cake and decorated it to the best of their abilities, and got me some small, thoughtful presents. 24 years old, and finally I had my first good birthday. I cried like a baby.
You Shall Not Passman in black jacket driving car during daytimePhoto by Thibault Penin on Unsplash
I went out to a bar drank a bit too much with my girlfriends. Some guy saw and tried to push me into an Uber to take me to his hotel. Then, the bouncer wouldn't let me back in no matter how many times I asked because according to him, "I changed my mind and that's not the guy's fault." No one else passing by wanted to intervene. I was getting really scared—until a good Samaritan stepped up and changed everything.
The Uber driver popped out of the front of his car and wrestled the guy off me. He made sure I was okay, gave the bouncer and everyone else a piece of his mind, too. Hope that guy's doing well in life.
Let the Good Times Roll
I took my sister, who’s in a wheelchair, to the cinema for the first time on my own. At the end, I realized I couldn't undo the brakes because it was a new wheelchair. It was blocking everyone. I felt like crying because I thought everyone was angry at me, but some nice lady helped me, then took me and my sister out. She said she once had a son who needed a wheelchair. This was long ago, but I'll never forget her or the kindness she showed me that day.
I am from 1980's rural Texas, where education was laughed at and where the idea of living in a foreign country was ludicrous. When I was 17, I met a Rotarian (like, a guy from a non-profit) who allowed me to go on a year-long foreign exchange. I had never heard of that concept before and had no real idea of what it meant. At 18, I packed my bags and discovered a brand new world! It honestly changed my life FOREVER. Definitely for the better.
While I was gone, I met other foreign exchange students and learned that it was fairly difficult to get into this program. I'd heard ambassadors’ children were being turned down from it. I honestly think that I got to go because no one else from my area wanted to leave the safety of our small town, while I jumped at the chance. I think about that old Rotarian a lot. I owe him everything for changing my life.
How to Save a Life
Back in 2018, I had a drastic decline in my mental health, which led to a failed attempt to take my life. I had enough of feeling miserable, so I checked myself in to a program. Afterwards, the hospital gave me a number and location to follow up with my newly-appointed therapist. Upon getting to their building, though, they needed me to pay a co-pay.
I didn't have a darn penny on me and said I couldn't pay. They denied me my appointment, and I remember thinking that when I walked out of there I was really going to go through with harming myself this time. Then a miracle happened. Right before I was about to leave, this other patient stopped me, pulled out her credit card and paid my co-pay.
She had told me that this place and these people saved her life. She said she didn't want me to lose mine because I couldn't afford to be cared for. The intensity of that relief almost cured my debilitating depression, I never felt so grateful in my life. I sincerely hope that lady is flourishing and being the best self she can be. She saved my life; that is the greatest kindness someone has ever done for me.
Those Who Can Do, Teach
My English teacher when I was very, very young. She was the sweetest I've ever had. She knew I loved the Harry Potter books, even though they were not super popular in France back then. So one day, she brought me HP-themed coloring books from her trip to England. It made me so happy that she thought about me even though she was away from school.
I Recommend This Manwhite mug on brown surfacePhoto by Pablo Varela on Unsplash
My boss and mentor wrote me a glowing reference and pulled some strings to get me into a graduate program, even though I was severely depressed and my work performance was nothing to be proud of. I couldn't comprehend or remember anything due to an undiagnosed disease, and I also acted extremely awkward socially. I really don't know why he went so far out of his way to change the trajectory of my life, but I’ll always be grateful.
I've had many people do nice things for me, but one stands out. I was very young, maybe 16 or 17. I'd had a terrible car accident and needed to get to a specialist downtown during my recovery. I wasn't a confident driver to begin with, and I had never driven downtown and got hopelessly lost. This was before everyone had cell phones.
I stopped at a pay phone in a grocery store. I was sobbing and scared. I couldn't describe where I was, since I was so lost, and I didn't know how to get turned in the right direction. A little old lady stopped to ask me if I was OK, so I told her where I was going and that I didn't know how to get there. She was shocked that I was SO LOST.
I was so far removed from where I was supposed to be. I wasn't even close to downtown. So she literally drove there in her car while I followed her. She just pointed out her window when we got to the address and I turned in. I never got to properly thank her. But it was far from over. To make it so much worse, once I finally got there, I was told they'd had to cancel my appointment.
I broke down, and an elderly couple came to comfort me and gave me some money and said to please take some time to calm down at the cafe next door, have some lunch or something. Twice in one day, I was approached by kind people who just wanted to help a teenager. That was over 25 years ago. I still don't like to drive downtown, but I do. I think of those people every time I have to go there.
Saving the Day
My dad cancelled my weekend with him a day before we were supposed to go to Six Flags and do other stuff together. My best friend's parents found out and duplicated all the activities. It meant so much to me.
Hit the Road
I was given a car by a former co-worker. At the time, I was walking or riding my bike eight miles one way just to get to work, and then another eight miles to get back home. When working with her, she asked if I wanted a car. I thought she was joking, but said yes anyway. About two weeks later, she said her husband had this old car that he fixed up and it’s ready for me.
From there, she had me meet up at a notary, and all I paid was for a title transfer and tax, which only came around $150. It wasn't the nicest car, but it worked. The car lasted a year, but still to this day I am forever grateful someone would gift me something that truly helped out tremendously. Then, she said there was a catch. I started to get nervous, but it was actually so heart-warming.
The catch was that, whenever I'm able to, I have to pass along a good deed. I've tried to pass this whenever I can. I sincerely appreciated all the help, Debby, and I wish only the best for you and your family. I'm still working on passing along good deeds as we have agreed. Thank you so much for your kindness, especially during a time in my life where I thought there was little hope. There is always hope.
Color Me Surprised
A woman I worked with a few years ago knew my 30th birthday was coming up and asked me what I was doing. I just said I’m visiting family, but she also found out that I’d never had a “surprise” before. I might get a present and maybe a bit of money and I was happy with that. I had no idea the gift she was about to give me.
At my parents’ house, they’d forgotten to buy a cake, so I just picked up a Victoria sponge cake and stuck a couple of tea light candles on it. It was fine, I don’t complain. But when I got back to work a week later, my lovely colleague had organised this beautiful two-tier birthday cake surrounded by gifts! And then she really surprised me.
She produced tickets for us two to get a drink at this ice bar place and tickets to go to the theatre. She did this because she remembered me saying I hadn’t been since I was a kid and no one I knew was interested in going. I was so shocked, I was nearly in tears. This was the very first birthday surprise I ever had. I will never forget my 30th birthday because of my colleague.
A Purr-Fect Presentperson walking inside building near glassPhoto by Heidi Fin on Unsplash
I worked as a retail cashier at a drug store. It was the Christmas season and CRAZY busy. We had tins of chocolates on sale for under $10, and they had designs of kittens and puppies on them. I mentioned to a lady who was buying a bunch that one tin in particular looked identical to my cat. She bought the tin and gave it to me!
I actually cried. To have a stranger spend their own money on someone else in that capacity. I’ve never had it happen before. It was years ago, and although the chocolates inside are long gone, I still display that chocolate tin every year at Christmas.
I was in a boarding school, so I couldn't go home or anything like that, and I was also really out of touch with my emotions. Very “keep calm and carry on.” One day in class, I was having REALLY REALLY bad period pains, and since I'm not the kind of person to share much, I was trying to hide it even though I was pretty much in agony.
My friend sitting next to me could clearly see something was wrong, and eventually I told her. So she sneaked into the dorm where you're not supposed to go during class hours for me to fetch some medication. She also offered to bring me dinner so I didn't have to move once I got home from class. She even told me jokes and stuff to cheer me up. I’ll always be grateful.
I couldn’t be there for the passing of my grandmother because I was at university, so my uncle had a bracelet made for me. It was engraved with her handwriting.
One Happy Ending
I had a really bad home life growing up. My friend—and at the time she was only loosely my friend—had two incredible moms who heard what was going on with me, and pretty much immediately got involved. At the time, I was emaciated, constantly terrified, and never let anyone get close, especially adults. When it got really bad, I used to dumpster dive and collect scraps from the school cafeteria for food for myself and for my brother.
I was chronically sick, mentally ill, rarely slept, and skipped class all the time. My friend's parents started dropping off bags of food at school for me and my younger brother. One night, they invited me over and I just...never left. They moved my brother into the house. They had absolutely no money. Not a freaking dime.
The money that used to be split between four people (two kids, two moms) was suddenly split between six. The house we shared was a half-finished re-modeling project and a total hazard. We didn't even have doors installed inside! Just curtains. To me, though, it was magic. I thought the fact that we didn't have sinks—that we had to crouch over the tub to wash our hands—was mythical.
My moms hugged me every morning and told me how special I was and how proud they were of me. For the first time in my life, I was stupidly, ridiculously happy. Every morning I woke up, my heart would race until I thought it might burst. I was literally that happy to be alive. The second I woke up—I mean the second—I bolted to the kitchen to say good morning to my moms and get a hug.
My friend (now my sister) and her family did everything for us. No rhyme, no reason. I stopped skipping school. My grades improved. I started earning scholarships. I got into a fantastic university. I now have a degree, a fantastic job, friends, and a family that I love.
Kindness Is in Short Supply
On the last day of school, I was helping my art teacher clean up for the summer. She knew I was rather poor growing up, so she gave me all the leftover paper, some really high quality bristol board and watercolor paper, all of the leftover prismacolor pencils, tons of paint brushes, and other various art supplies. It was her last year teaching, and she didn’t care to save the stuff for the next year. I still miss her. She was the best teacher I've ever had.
Long Time, No Seephoto of pub set in room during daytimePhoto by Jason Leung on Unsplash
I was at a restaurant in Boston by myself on a Friday night. It was 7 pm, so I was just enjoying a nice dinner by myself before heading back to my hotel. There was a man with a wedding ring on who asked me if the seats next to me were taken. I told him no, and he and his friends sat down. He eventually started chatting with me and it was friendly, but then he started hitting on me.
I brushed him off, and he slightly backed off…but then started eating French fries off of my plate. I pushed the plate away and asked the bartender for my check. I was in the last seat at the bar, so I had nowhere to go other than to wait, and the bar was packed. The guy then tells me I’m beautiful and asks if I want to go back to my hotel with him.
I told him again no. He asked again, I told him I was married and he said “So? So am I.” I’m so grateful for what happened next. All of the sudden, this voice says to me “Oh my god! What are you doing here? I haven’t seen you in so long!” And a woman hugged me. This woman and I chatted and pretended we were old friends while I paid. She then walked with me to my Uber to make sure I got into it safely and that he didn’t follow me. I don’t know where this woman is now, but she made me feel safe.
I went on a homecoming date and ordered a bunch of food. While we were there, this old couple ended up buying our dinner because we reminded them of what they used to look like when they were young. I’m very grateful, because I didn’t actually have enough money to pay for dinner. I was maybe $30 short. I’m still with the girl three years later.
A Grave Secret
I have many family members interred in a small cemetery with a few unattended graves that I occasionally clean and place artificial flowers on. Sometimes I do the ones around them. I feel morally obligated to honor their memory. One day, I found a letter. Its contents were heartbreaking. Obscured behind my father's flowers, in an inconspicuous brown envelope, was an effusive message of gratitude from an old woman whose arthritis incapacitated her.
She had seen my maintenance of her husband's grave from her house across the road and wanted to thank me for my compassion. I was confounded because I never anticipated any recognition. She said she asked her daughter what she could do to compensate me, and she purchased an iTunes voucher for her mother to give me in the envelope.
It was one of those letters and gestures that the gratitude and appreciation emanated from the very paper. The handwriting was so elegant and fastidious; I know she took an inordinate amount of time composing her words. She loved her husband beyond articulation. We have tea together twice a month now.
A Class of His Own
When I was in school, I had a classmate who was terminally ill. He wanted to do all the things he wouldn’t grow up to do, and pretty much our whole school got involved. One girl’s parents owned a nightclub, and they decked out the VIP lounge and served mocktails to roughly 100 students. The kid wanted to be a police officer, and one boy’s dad arranged for him to go on shift with him for the day.
He wanted to go on a beach holiday, and the teachers put little kiddie pools around the long jump pit with water in. We all did something off his list. He got 62 valentines cards in October! He was always such a kind and thoughtful guy that everyone was happy to join in. His mom messaged me a few weeks ago just to catch up and she said she can’t believe that this year it’s 20 years since he passed, and she's so grateful that everyone made his brief time on earth so wonderful.
A Little Something Extra
My dad is a retired junior/senior high school art teacher. Every single morning for well over a decade, he packed an extra lunch and put it in a place in his classroom where a student whose family was struggling could take it without making a big deal of it. Eventually, when the older student graduated, one of his younger siblings started taking his class.
The kid would already know he could take the extra lunch bag without having to face talking to my dad about it, or being embarrassed in front of the class. I used to ask why Dad packed two lunches while I was growing up, and he would just say, “I sometimes get extra hungry.” My mom later told me the truth. He is such a quiet, humble, and extremely generous man.
Reddit user Bluemonday82 asked: 'Daughters of reddit: what's the biggest mistake dads make with their daughters?'
"Daddy's Girl, Daddy's Girl, I'm the center of Daddy's world..." ~ "Daddy's Girl" by Red Sovine
A lot has been written about the bond between fathers and daughters.
But there's always room for improvement, right?
And who better to offer constructive criticism than daughters?
Reddit user Bluemonday82 asked:
"Daughters of Reddit: what's the biggest mistake dads make with their daughters?"
"My dad and I recently talked about how he stopped showing physical affection when I hit puberty (20 years ago). He didn't know how to act because his sisters got treated inappropriately by others when he was young, and he wanted to be sure I never felt like that."
"It resulted in me never getting hugs or kisses on the cheeks anymore. He also didn't know how to talk about it in the past."
"But in the last years, he worked through so much of his rough childhood and really learned to express himself better. He apologized, and I said I understood and that his intentions came from a good place, that the only bad thing was all the hugs we missed out on."
"We hugged for a really long time after that, and we've been hugging extra tight ever since."
"So I guess what I wanna say is, don't treat your daughters differently when their bodies start to change. And always keep talking!"
"I'm so proud of my dad for the person he's become."
"For a while, I didn't wanna hug my dad either. Puberty was rough for me, and the adults in my life kept acting like it was just a phase."
"And I guess it was, but that doesn't mean it wasn't the most emotionally complicated and lonely period of my life. The feelings weren't less real."
"My dad and I struggled a lot. He didn't know how to express himself at all, and I was so overwhelmed I didn't know either."
"I also grew up with two autistic brothers who needed a lot of care and attention. I love them so much, but it resulted in me always looking out for them and never learning (until just a few years ago) to properly give space to my own inner turmoil."
"My brothers were never physically affectionate either. But once I got out of the heaviest puberty years, I did want that affection from my dad. For a while, male physical attention was a very complicated topic for me."
"A Christian upbringing also played a role in that cause as a young girl growing into a woman, it had a lot to say about how I should behave around men."
"Something important to add is that my dad's rough childhood not only made it hard to show love but also receive it. His journey started with the realization that he had no idea how to react to getting compliments."
"I think that's a thing that a lot of men (from his generation especially, but also younger ones) will recognize. Know that we are all deserving of love and kindness, especially from our loved ones, but even more so from ourselves!"
"My dad couldn't ever have grown this much without learning to really understand what that means. And diving into the withholding of love from his parents heavily impacted how he dealt with that himself."
"I'm so glad my dad and I could both grow and work through our issues. Even if he couldn't show or say it, I never really doubted his love for me."
"But I know he would encourage you all to learn how to show and receive appreciation! That man is my example for people never being too old to learn."
"I'm sending love and strength to all of you who struggle with this in one way or another."
"And to the fathers who feel like their young kids don't want their affection, just know that this will most likely change again over time. They might act like they don't wanna hear it, but keep letting them know you're there for them."
"The one mistake my dad made was not really being present. A lot of the memories I have of him are him watching TV or being on the computer and not having time to play with me."
"He always said he’s too tired or he’ll come play later but then he never did. So since we never really bonded when I was little we weren’t all that close as I grew older either."
"Getting angry for something the kid doesn't know, and never teaching it. Not before and not even after getting angry.
"Doing something you know upsets the kid on purpose."
"Slamming doors and stuff in the house because you're angry."
"Not listening, and talking only to make themselves look smart and great parents rather than talking for helping."
"I'll never forget the time my dad saw me put something metal in the microwave. I don't know how old I was, but I know I needed to push a chair to the counter to even reach the microwave."
"He SCREAMED at me for several minutes about how STUPID I was and how he couldn't believe I would do something SO INCREDIBLY DUMB and was I trying to start a fire??"
"I had no idea you weren't supposed to put metal in a microwave."
"I did learn a few things that day- don't put metal in the microwave and don't do anything wrong in front of Daddy. Oh, but you won't know if was wrong or not until too late..."
"Didn’t have to look very far to find the description of my dad—especially slamming doors and hitting things loudly when upset while stomping all over the house."
"People always get a kick out of how jumpy I am (easily startled), but it’s reflexive from anticipating loud bangs/crashing that would come out of nowhere every day."
"My dad had such a short temper. He didn't necessarily hit me, but I got spanked til I was 9 years old and then my mom told him I was too old for that."
"But whenever he was angry (and that was a lot of the time) he'd scream and sometimes slam things."
"My husband slammed his hand onto the table a couple times during fights near the beginning, but realized he was wrong for acting like that, especially seeing how I'd immediately shut down. He's gotten much better."
Being Your Child's Bully
"Singing in a falsetto voice and poking until your autistic kid is screaming at you to stop isn’t 'fun' or teaching them to be less sensitive, it’s why they don’t ever want to hang out with you."
"Making fun when your small daughter is having big feelings."
"I got so furiously frustrated when my parents wouldn't listen to what I was trying to tell them and my dad just loooooved to mock my crying or squeaky 'upset' voice back at me."
"It made me so f*cking hurt and angry to not only be ignored and patronized, but actively MOCKED when I tried to communicate."
"Now as an adult I don't bother trying to share anything with them."
"Another classic was when I was disappointed and said, 'aww, man' he'd scrunch up his face, raise his voice three octaves, and 'AwW mAn!!' back at me."
"So now I wasn't just sad and disappointed, but sad, disappointed, and humiliated!"
"Imagine choosing to be your child's first bully... 😞"
Just a Girl
"Or from my experience—not even bothering to teach anything because Dad assumes his daughter wouldn't be interested because she's a girl."
"Worse—actively making sh*tty jokes about women not liking those things."
"Not having anything to do with their daughters because the dad 'doesn't have anything in common with a girl'."
"This goes double if a son shows up and the dad is really involved in the son's life."
Puberty Isn't a Disease
"My dad basically bailed on parenting once I hit puberty."
"Like, you think I’m enjoying this? It would have been great to have another supportive adult around."
"Same! What’s up with that?"
"I remember having a good relationship with my dad as a child but he emotionally cut me off and stopped hanging out with me when the boobs came in."
"I would be lying if I said that I’m past it and it doesn’t f*ck with my head still."
"Literally knowing nothing about their daughters lives."
"Those ‘funny’ videos where they ask fathers basic questions—like what their daughter's birthday, or eye color, or school is—and the dads have no idea are not at all funny.
"I love my dad but he can’t tell you anything about me—even the name of the place I’ve worked for over 6 years."
"One year when I was in elementary, my mom left a comically large piece of paper on the front door for my dad telling him not to forget to wish me a happy birthday."
"Not only did he not wish me a happy birthday, but he somehow didn’t see the gigantic sign when he walked in the house from work. So I got to read it when I got home from school."
"Sometimes I think about calling him to check in but then I think of that (and other complete fumbles) and then I just don’t."
"When I was in 4th grade, we did a Christmas recital where all the classes sung songs. My mom couldn’t make it because she had work so she sent my dad with the camcorder."
"He recorded the wrong kid. Very awkward watching the tape that night."
The original poster shared their reason for asking his question.
"Wanted to add that I'm a dad of a teen and that motivated me to ask this. The replies are just heartbreaking."
"I'm reading every single reply and I really hope all the dads and parents and basically everyone is learning something."
"Dad of an almost 4 year old daughter with two older brothers…. I’m scouring this post like there is cash on it somewhere."
"I’m doing the same thing, stepdad that adores both my boy and girl. Couldn’t have kids myself. Searching for gold on this thread."
And the daughters appreciated it.
"This is healing my younger self—knowing that there are fathers trying to do right by their young girls.
"I'm 25 now and I think if he just would have asked me how I was doing (and meant it) it would have changed me a lot."
"Same. My father was cartoonishly selfish, strict, controlling and mostly only saw me as a pretty, obedient mirror born to reflect his glory. What I thought, felt, liked, or wanted mattered very little and we seldom had what I would call 'real' conversations."
"Reading the posts of all the good fathers in this thread has been wonderful."
"I'm so happy there are tons of little girls out there with fathers who want to know them and see them for who they really are, who want to teach them things and bond with them."
"My father never wanted to get to know the real me, which is a shame because I'm a f*cking delight."
As the OP stated, hopefully everyone has used this opportunity to learn something.
Is there anything you would add?
Full disclosure at all times with your significant other, right?
Yeah, good luck with that.
Let's get real—there are things we don't tell our partners for a lot of reasons.
Sometimes you just don't feel like having to explain something that doesn't really affect them.
Sometimes you're protecting them from something that will have a devastating effect on them.
These are probably going to be more that second one...
Reddit user Janine_18 asked:
"What's the one thing you'll never tell your SO?"
"She loves her siblings and hates her parents."
"I hate her siblings and love her parents."
"They were very tight with their parents for the first 3 years of our relationship, and in 2017-2018 all hell broke loose so to say. My partner has no personal animus towards her parents, she is however extremely close to her older sibling who has a heap of problems with their parents."
"My partner follows their lead and it guides her own relationship with their parents. And the reason her siblings have huge problems with their parents is that they retired, moved 20(!) whole minutes away from their childhood home and went on a vacation for a month.
"They are apparently 'selfish', 'inconsiderate', and 'don’t think of themselves as parents'. This despite the fact that they call and visit for every holiday, birthday, promotion, celebration of any kind. Dog and babysit. Frequently host. Communicate well."
"No the absolute truth is that my partner's siblings are black holes and not great."
"Would 'I radically dislike your one sibling and don’t trust the other at all” be a viable middle ground?'."
"A few years ago, my girlfriend put a candy bowl in our hallway at our apartment for Halloween. She came home that day to discover that nobody took any candy, and she was a little bummed."
"Over the course of that week, I'd take candy out before work or when she was asleep."
"She got so happy that 'the neighbors loved the candy'. She does this every year now, and I have to continuously swipe the candy and pretend it is the neighbors."
"It makes her happy, and I get free candy. Win win."
In It For the House
"That I know she cheated on me and the only reason I haven't left her is because the mortgage interest rates are a bit high so I can't comfortably buy her half of the equity we have in the house."
"I got a valuation, a mortgage pre-approval, and a lawyer all ready to go... But would only have about $21 per week to spare... I'd be screwed the first time a major appliance or the car breaks down..."
"That her mother is a bad person in disguise of a caring and beloved figure."
"My pet name for my girlfriend is Bambi."
"She thinks it's because has big brown eyes, but really it's because I want to shoot her mother with a rifle."
"That's my mother in law. For her daughter, she'll do anything... to the point that it's overbearing and controlling and difficult to deal with."
"And for everyone else, she is one of the least empathetic people I've ever met..."
"She CRIED when Rush Limbaugh died, and she literally said the Proud Boys are like the Boy Scouts. But she'll drop $2,000 on Christmas presents for one person like it's nothing, so she thinks she's owed respect and kind words."
"I literally had to tell her at one point, 'If you want me to stop calling you a Nazi, buying me more presents or arguing with me isn't going to do it, you have to stop saying Nazi-friendly sh*t'. But she didn't stop, of course."
"She thought COVID was no big deal until a family member died of it."
"She also makes tons of snide comments about my work. I'm a lawyer in Big Law, I make great money but it's soul sucking and I never wanted to do this forever, I want to work for the government."
"She'll see a postal worker and say 'That'll be you one day, government worker, not a great way to provide for my daughter'."
"Her daughter, my wife, is a DOCTOR who is going to make more than I do no matter what job I work, and she herself is a dentist who worked until her banker husband could retire at the same time as her."
"She talks sh*t about how I made her daughter an atheist (I didn't, she did that on her own), but she herself has NEVER read the Bible and hasn't been to church in 20 years."
"She unironically believes in aliens, Big Foot, and ghosts, and thinks she saw Mother Mary in the sky."
"All the bad things I tend to think about Republicans (they don't care about an issue until it personally affects them, they have no standards except double standards, they use religion as a cudgel but don't actively live a spiritual life, they believe insane sh*t with zero evidence, they're old fashioned and judgy and can't accept that the world is changing around them, etc...) is her to the letter."
Magic the Retirement Fund
"How much my Magic the Gathering collection is worth."
"They'll absolutely try to get me to sell some of it."
"It's my precious."
"When he and I first met, I was CERTAIN he was gay."
"He is very much NOT gay."
"And he will NEVER know I ever thought this."
No Llama Drama
"When me and my wife first started dating, I had a dumb canvas painting with a llama and rabbit on it that I found at Walmart. I showed it to her and told her how much I loved it just because it was just such a dumb random thing to find."
"For some reason she took that as I love llamas and that they are my favorite animal. So now, every time she sees one or something with a llama on it I see her brighten up to show me and I get excited with her!"
"Llamas are not my favorite animal. Never have been. I don’t know how she made this connection, but i will never tell her otherwise because seeing her face light up every time is way better."
Relationship by Google
"I spend a couple hours doing research on how to make relationships work and keep her happy in the long run."
"She thinks I'm this awesome perfect guy but I just do what the internet tells me."
"He thinks I don’t fart around him because I’m too shy or polite."
"It’s really because they are so bad they could kill a horse."
Are There Raisins?
"I don't like the potato salad she makes, and she always tries to make it as a treat for me."
"It's my mom's recipe, but doesn't taste like mom's."
"The spot you make me sleep in on the bed is uncomfortable but I lay there because you're comfortable where you are."
"We’re both in college, and last semester we both had a cold at some point. He had it much, much worse than I did, so I went to class and he skipped."
"Afterwards, I went to his dorm to share notes and take a nap. I was almost asleep, and I’m assuming he thought I was, because I felt him squeeze me and whisper, 'I love you so f**king much'.”
"It was the sweetest thing ever and I’m never telling him I know he did that."
Maybe a Farm Upstate?
"I definitely didn't kill that massive spider, and I have no idea where it went."
So, these weren't too awful, right?
What secrets are you keeping?
We all have that moment where someone we know says something so completely absurd, the only response we think of is 'WTF is wrong with you?'
Sometimes, it's something woefully inaccurate that you can't wrap your head around the fact that someone believes that.
Othertimes, it's something completely offensive and you regret your association with that person.
My college roommate was a girl I knew from my high school. I didn't know her too well, but we had some big things in common, so I figured it'd be fun to live with her.
This girl was half-Korean and talked a lot about racist people. At first, I let her rant, figuring maybe she or someone in her family faced some racism. I faced some myself, and I agreed with most of the things she said about racists. Eventually, however, I realized she was equating the word 'racist' with the word 'white.'
I spoke to her once, telling her she can't use 'racist' and 'white' interchangeably. She agreed to stop doing that, but within a few days, she started doing it again. She was a very bright girl, so I was a little concerned about this, especially since her own dad was white and was possibly the nicest man in the world. Not to mention, this made her and her siblings half-white too. Did that mean they were all half-racist?
I stuck by her for a while, but when she started saying things about what she wanted to do to racist people (once again using the word 'white' instead of 'racist'), I realized I couldn't be around her anymore. She couldn't talk about anything else after a while, and every time she spoke, I wanted to say, 'WTF is wrong with you?'
We did not room together the next year.
Redditors have stories similar to mine (and some even crazier), and they are eager to share.
It all started when a Redditorasked:
"What did the person do/say that made you go "what the f**k is wrong with you?"
How To End A Friendship
"In college I used to kill time between classes hanging out with a guy who was from the same redneck county as myself. We didn’t really have much else in common, but he was nice enough and seemed eager to socialize so I figured why not. I wasn’t overly social myself and didn’t know a whole lot of people."
"One day we decided to go somewhere off-campus, and he drove us. While driving, on an interstate mind you, he proceeds to show me his handgun that he kept in his truck - not in a menacing way, but in a “Ain’t that cool?” way."
"I was not immediately frightened, but I respect firearms enough to recognize we are going like 60-70mph on an interstate in daylight, and nothing good can happen in this scenario. I calmly asked him to put it away because I was not comfortable in this situation at all. He then tells me “Oh it’s not loaded” and presses the gun to his head before pulling the trigger."
"Thank f**k he was right, but still it was a wild and frightening display of reckless disregard for his own life and mine for that matter in the event that he’d accidentally killed himself while driving us. I didn’t hang out with him much after that, certainly didn’t get in a car with him."
"“It’s not loaded” famous last words of many an idiot."
The Worst Kind Of People
"When my dad was in the nursing home, they weren't running certain expenses, like ambulance rides, through his insurance. When I took over his financials, he was tens of thousands in medical debt that shouldn't have ever been charged to him in the first place. He was in numerous collections, and his credit score was tanked."
"When I complained to the nursing home director, he said, "Well, it's not like he's going to be buying a house or a car!" Then he laughed."
"My dad was paralyzed from the waist down and needed lifelong care, so he was never going to leave the nursing home. Even though he was technically correct, I gave him the "WTF is wrong with you look." Then I complained to HIS boss and he got canned a couple a weeks later. My dad's insurance was fixed pretty quick, too."
"“Sorry, what was funny about that? Could you please explain.”"
"MIL told my wife she should divorce me bc I googled whether a lasagna should be covered with foil while cooking."
"This is my first laugh of the thread lmao wtf."
"It actually ruined this entire trip. It was at my BIL’s wedding, which was only close family (siblings + parents) and they had the caterer make a lasagna for an evening dinner."
"Father of the bride was gonna pop it in the oven and asked if it should be covered. I googled lasagna cooking instructions and said yes it should be covered and cooked at this temp. MIL said absolutely not!"
"Me and the father of the bride kinda gave each other a look and he covered it. MIL was furious and texted my wife that I was an a hole and she should divorce me before we had kids."
Hostile Work Environment
"Boss at old job told the team we needed to ‘get used to a healthy level of conflict, fear and anxiety in the workplace.’ I dipped so fast after that."
"Similarly, a boss told me that I owed him my loyalty because he was paying me."
How To End A Relationship
"A girl I was with while we were still together just looked at me while I was driving to her house and said.” You know I would get over you faster than you’d get over me” I was like …… Tf did you just say?"
"Huh. And just like that I'm over you."
"Honestly, that would absolutely do it for me. When I was younger, I would be stupid and hurt and argue. I'm past 50 and I got no time for that nonsense."
There Are Other Ways To Stave Off Boredom
"I was DD for some buddies who wanted to go to a particular dance club in Baltimore. They're all hammered, it's too loud and we've been there for several hours. Casually an older woman next to me chats me up and notices my eyes are nearly crossing from boredom. I explained what I was doing there and casually (stupidly) mentioned I'm a bit bored. This psycho BITES ME on the chest! Afterward says "Well ya ain't bored now, are ya??""
"Well, were you bored after that?"
"I must say, I was not!"
That Goes Both Ways!
"I'm a man who works with kids, and when I started this job, I was talking to one of my old coworkers about how every once in a while I'll get weird looks for being a man working with kids and my coworker said I deserved it because some men can't be trusted with kids. I was shocked and she went on to say that I did it to myself and deserve to be questioned about it. I immediately stopped talking to her."
"What? What in the actual f**k? Doesn’t she know there are women who can’t be trusted with kids?"
That Escalated Quickly
"The lady that accused my kids of cutting the line. (They hadn't, I was watching). When I went to ask her what was wrong, she told me to go back to my own country with that sh*t. (I was born in Massachusetts.)"
"The line was to pet dogs at a Renaissance Fair."
Everything All At Once
"While alone with a coworker, he told me that "women in the work place will lead to the decay of the fabric of society" to me. A woman. He also asked me out, got an attitude when I didn't say yes and continues to walk around with huge incel energy. He always complains that he has no one to go home to yet refuses to look at himself as a possible reason."
"Sounds like they should learn something from the phrase, "if you meet one a**hole, they're the a**hole. If everyone you meet is an a**hole, you're the a**hole.""
"I told a coworker my wife had died."
"Her response: "You're one of those bald middle aged guys with a dead wife.""
"I want to think this was a wholesome thought that came out wrong. An awkward attempt at dark humor."
"Had an otherwise normal co-worker who was completely convinced windmills will cause the earth to stop spinning."
"WINDMILLS DO NOT WORK THAT WAY! GOOD NIGHT!"
These are all crazy 'WTF is wrong with you' stories, but that last one blew my mind in 'how is it possible people think that could be true' sort of way!
One of the possible wonders of adulthood is home ownership. But homes come with so many things that can break.
And the last thing you want is a nonfunctioning furnace when temperatures dip below zero or no water when you're covered in dirt and grime.
That's what routine maintenance is for—to make sure things work when you need them.
Reddit user drop_user_table asked:
"What is a home maintenance task most homeowners are probably not doing but should?"
"You know the exhaust from your dryer that vents outside."
"Pull the vent off, take a dry vac and vacuum the lint out of there."
"You’ll be surprised."
"Cuts down on dryer fires."
"There are a shocking number of dryer fires!"
There are TikTok and YouTube channels of just people cleaning dryer vents and dryer hoses.
Carbon Monoxide Detector
"Not sure I'd call it 'maintenance' but installing a carbon monoxide detector is a good idea."
"You can get ones that just sit on a shelf somewhere."
"A $20 carbon monoxide detector saved my life. We put them in when we moved in, the previous owners didn't have any."
"A year later it went off, hot water tank malfunctioned and dumped gas into the basement. The firefighters confirmed the levels in the house would have killed us."
"It's surprising how quick the gas can get through your house. A family of 6 lived there before us."
Smoke detectors have become common in homes, but carbon monoxide awareness isn't quite there yet.
"I worked with a lady who once told me (when I asked if she had plans for the weekend), 'Well, it is the first of the month, so it is time to wash the baseboards'."
"In my house, they only get washed if something spills in them, we are painting, or we are getting ready to sell the house."
Washing baseboards monthly might be excessive, but you should dust, mop or vacuum them when you do the rest of the room to keep dust and allergens down.
"Turn the main valve for your water off and on once or twice a year."
"If you do not, eventually it will corrode and stick and when you have a major leak you will not be able to shut the water off."
"Only do this with hardware stores open in the event it actually is defective and in need of replacement because consequences."
Locate your main water shut-off BEFORE you need it in an emergency situation. This can be especially useful during cold weather since in-home plumbing can freeze.
"Caulking around your roof vents every 3-5 years. That stuff deteriorates and it WILL leak."
"I can’t count the number of homes I’ve seen with interior water damage as a result of deteriorated sealant around the roof vents."
How to create a watertight seal around a vent pipe.
"Cleaning the gutters."
"My husband goes up with a leaf blower and blows them all out. So much easier, but much, much messier."
Leaf blowers make the job quick and easy.
Working Fire Extinguisher
"Having FIRE EXTINGUISHERS on hand and turning them upside down to prevent settling."
"Minimum once a year. My company does fire extinguisher inspections."
"An annual inspection for a fire extinguisher is turning it upside down for a few seconds and then removing the hose and checking for obstructions/debris."
Routine inspections of your fire extinguisher will ensure it works when you need it.
"Clean out the filters/traps in your dishwasher."
"This is one I truly didn’t know. First time homeowner and didn’t know about that until about 3 years into owning the house."
"Apparently the previous owner didn’t know anything about it so that first cleaning was a doozy."
Cleaning your dishwasher improves efficiency.
Hot Water On Tap
"Drain hot water tank and check anode rods if you've got an electric unit."
"We replaced a rod a couple of years ago. That thing was scary looking!"
"The couple we bought our house from apparently did no routine maintenance, so we've had to do almost everything listed in this post."
Replacing a water heater anode rod extends the life of the tank.
There are a lot of things to add to the to-do list here.
Is there anything else you'd add?