When I was heading into high school from middle my guidance counselor and my parents wanted me to enter into "gifted" classes because I was able to maintain a high GPA. They thought it would give me a head start for a great college and then prime me for the Presidency. I protested and negotiated signing up for merely "advanced" classes, God forbid I go with "regular" classes, or we all just get the same education. I have never regretted it.
My friends in the "gifted" arena were always stressed, could rarely attend a social event.
Education is what you put into it. Why drive a young student crazy? Redditor u/sangbum60090 was wondering how life ended up for those in the "brilliant" percent by asking.... Former "gifted children", what went wrong?
The Burnout....burnt out GIF by Space Jam Giphy
High expectations from a young age, from everyone, leading to overworking, depression anxiety and burnout.
For me the high expectations were combined with questionable parenting. My mom didn't really understand that you can't just push people you need them to buy in and you need to know how things work. My mom would yell at me for doing poorly in high school math but didn't understand that if I didn't have high school math I couldn't go into a business or engineering degree and now I'm messed because my BA & MA are useless.
Pushing your kids too hard is really crappy. Also, not meeting their basic emotional needs or giving them fun stuff to do will also mess with them.
In the 6th....
In sixth grade I started at a very prestigious school geared toward college prep. At my previous school I excelled with minimal effort, rarely got under 99% on any test or quiz or project. Sixth grade starts, and now I have 3+ hours of homework a night. Couple that with piano lessons (I didn't particularly enjoy them) once a week and extra curricular like sports and I had less free time as a sixth grader than I do now at 33 with a full time job 45 minute one way commute, and a three year old daughter.
It was absolutely insane and I cracked under the pressure. I managed to keep those high As all through sixth grade but then in seventh grade? Yeah I discovered that I could still get Bs and Cs and not really apply myself all that much. So I did that instead. My motivation was just non existent after that burnout. I simply didn't give a crap anymore about most schooling.
I still graduated and managed to mostly turn it around and have As and Bs by the end of high school but I never recovered the ability to give too much of a crap so that stuck with me to the present pretty much. I have certainly underachieved what people would have expected of me if they knew me in elementary school but meh.
Averagestudent pass GIF by Juan Billy Giphy
I never learned how to work for my grades. Even now in college, I find it hard to sit down and do my work and I push everything to the last minute.
It turned even worse when my university turned all exams in school to longer exams at home with permitted use of books. I didn't open the book until the exam. Got an average grade but could have done much better had I just read and worked as I should (that said, the course expecting us to read 500 pages a week on average is just not realistic).
So Many Issues....
Sounds like a cop out, but to an extent I blame my mother. I'd come home having scored a 98/99 and her brand of "comedy" was to ask what happened to the other 1 or 2%. She loves me and didn't mean any harm by it, but after a while it wears on you. I started feeling like if I didn't try it wouldn't matter to me if I missed out on a few percentage points here or there anymore because I'd always have a legitimate excuse for myself.
That, plus mental health issues (anxiety and depression). I'm actually doing much better now and teach at University-level, but there's always that voice in the back of my head that tells me things are never quite good enough, and it bugs the crap out of me.
ETA: hey look, ma! I finally reached 100!
ADHD and child abuse.
And when my parents were disappointed, they expressed it physically... So my life devolved into depression, anxiety, and an inability to use what I had. It doesn't matter how much horsepower you have under the hood if you can't put it on the ground. It's taken me years to finally get myself into a position to make good on some of my early potential.
Mental illness and being poorly prepared for life, but I've gotten control of it. Now I'm a little behind in life but I'm back in college and have a 4.0. Sometimes we get derailed but it's never too late to try again.
Only to be Smarter....Smart Think About It GIF by Friends Giphy
The same things that go wrong for most gifted kids: Gifted education doesn't deliver. I was head of every class I was in for the longest time, but giving the smart kid more of the same work doesn't teach them about being challenged.
Then when the board of education got involved because I broke the standardised test in third grade and the school was forced to skip me ahead, the principal rode me like a fairground pony and would call me to his office once a week and berate me for not instantly coming out on top of a class that was starting to challenge me two weeks into first term.
I still ended up in the school for smart kids, but the curriculum was no different to every other school, it was just a holding tank. The education system is designed for kids to learn at a specific pace. If you do it faster, if you do it slower, if you do it differently the system stops working pretty quickly.
EDIT: Well this blew up in a way I wasn't expecting. Hey, for those of you who want to read more about what happens to gifted kids as they grow up I recommend Gifted Grownups By Marylou Kelly Streznewsky (hella expensive for an ebook, but well worth it). This was the book that finally put all the intelligence into perspective for me, and made me realize that I was not only "smarter" I was also qualitatively different, and because of that, no matter where I am in life, giftedness is a lifelong thing.
"gifted and talented"
Developed severe depression and didn't get help until after I had already failed pretty much all my classes for 3 years in a row and fallen behind, and then fell another year behind when I was in a long-term progress-based outpatient program getting treatment for my depression. Then, when I finally went back to school with my mental health in check, I had about a month of good grades and success before I started to develop major health problems.
I tried to finish via online schooling but couldn't keep up with the increased workload in online school while so sick so I ended up having to drop out.
And that's how I went from a "gifted and talented" kid to a high school dropout.
Early On....life GIF Giphy
From a really early age i was considered a bright kid. Now when interacting with people in my daily life, it's generally understood that I come off as pretty smart, but i never had accomplishments that were consistent with that.
I never had something to show for it, but that doesn't necessarily suggest that my strengths weren't real. It just suggests that they didn't end up being as important as some might've guessed.
What went wrong, is that the world turned out to be a place, where there are very few chances for people to make a living running their mouth.
I developed mental problems because of brain damage from trying to bang myself in sixth grade and then I had failed several classes. Through high school and college I got better though, I had a 3.4 in HS and a 3.7 in college, 3.2 if we count the dropped classes as F's.
beyond test scores...
I was considered gifted in the sense that I always got great test scores, at times perfect, but that was when I was in an actual public school, I was moved to online schooling a year after Sandy Hook and my grades dropped significantly, I just couldn't learn as well as I used to, this might've been the cause of my depression or I just happened to be depressed on top of all the other bullcrap.
Now What?Confused Jennifer Robertson GIF by CBC Giphy
Get a college degree! Cool i got one. Now what? No one ever talked to me about planning for goals after college and 7 years later I still don't know what I'm doing with my life.
the weird kid...
I started school a year early because I was considered "gifted." I remember having to take a special test so I could start school early and being afraid I would fail and disappoint my mom. By first grade, I was in gifted classes - teachers would remove us from our normal class or we'd miss out on recess and go to these extra classes.
The other kids picked on us. I wasn't as emotionally mature in the first place and I was physically tiny. The pressure to be expectational in the gifted class was extreme. In second grade, I had an emotional breakdown in gifted class that required my mom to come pick me up at school since I couldn't stop crying and hyperventilating.
I was removed from the gifted class after that.
I felt so embarrassed - first I was the weird kid none of the others liked and then I was the weird kid who melted down and wasn't good enough to stay in the gifted class.
Well, my family are poor as hell. I'm talking I didn't realize vegetables came in anything but cans until I moved out, and we never had enough to eat. I was also raised in a cult where education was seen as a bad thing, so I got a late start - even though I skipped a couple grades.
By my teenage years I was dealing with severely untreated mental illness, and was forced onto benzos to deal with "anxiety attacks." I started self-medicating, and by 15 was completely addicted.
I was cloistered away and not allowed any friends not specifically in my cult - which made things worse. I worked three jobs at 16, and my parents confiscated all the money. I also started at a local tech school around this time.
Between the side effects of the benzos, guilt over religion, and just general stress, I lost a scholarship I had applied for, and my main job. Barely made it through the rest of school.
Moved out after that, and have gotten better every year since, but it's a long freaking road.
I burned out in college; I was poorly taught due to teacher strikes and had a general poor time of it emotionally. As a result I didn't work quite as hard as I should have and didn't get the best grades. I got into my second choice university and realised that it was just the college and A-Level mindset.
That didn't suit me as well as the pressure of exams and, although I was heartbroken at the time, my then girlfriend breaking up with me significantly helped my development and I thrived at uni all the way through to my Masters degree.
Don't let being labelled as "gifted" distract you and don't let a style of learning that doesn't agree with you allow you to think you aren't clever.
It's just Life
Life got in the way, but otherwise nothing.
Like many, I learned late that hard work can be as important as raw talent, if not more so, but I had time to learn how to do that, catch-up, and achieve some great stuff.
I feel like I would still be doing well, even battling my own demons of ADHD and anxiety, if my parents hadn't gotten so sick and for such a long time. It just took too much time to take care of them, even with tons of hired help.
Sometimes, maybe even often, big things happen that derail your perfect life plans - your marriage falls apart, you have a special needs child, you get sick, you get a new president of an institute and they want to take work in another direction, etc.
Life goes on, nobody gets everything thing way and secretly think they deserve.
Ways to be social...
Focus was on academic success not social skills. Parents moved the family around a lot and so I changed schools many times. Being on the shy side made it difficult to make friends, and when I did we'd just move again and I'd lose those friends. In my teen years felt isolated and chronically depressed. My parents didn't understand I needed help with this and my father was anti psychiatrists.
Cue low self esteem, bumbling from one job to another, and gut wrenching loneliness. Took me till my late 20s to find some social confidence and a boyfriend. But still battling depression, been in therapy on and off for years and go through periods I am medicated for depression.
Ways to CopeStressed Over It GIF by HULU Giphy
I think many "gifted" children, speaking of American millennials, came from challenging circumstances. The intelligence and maturity that got them into "gifted" programs was probably often a manifestation of abnormal coping responses.
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There are some questions that illustrate such vulnerability, such open tragedy on the part of the asker that we fend off tears while we come up with an appropriate answer.
Sometimes the question comes from someone who's been so steeped in struggle that they need help understanding that another possible reality exists.
Sometimes it's a question that cuts right to our own core with startling efficiency.
Whatever form it takes, it stops us in our tracks and we're likely to remember it for quite awhile after.
Curious to hear the saddest examples, Redditor julylovestory asked:
"What question has someone asked you that secretly broke your heart?"
Many Redditors responded by sharing the sad questions uttered by young children.
Kids just have the knack for cutting straight through to the essence of it all.
A Tragic Conscientiousness
"As we passed the toy aisle at the store, 'I know you don't have much money right now, but maybe when you get some we could come back and get a toy?' "
"I was not doing well financially back then and my daughter brought me to tears in the middle of the store."
Puzzled and Sad
"First day of preschool for my three year old son. The first time he would ever be away from Mom & Dad at the same time."
"I brought him to the room and expected a meltdown, but instead he confidently strutted, and I do mean strutted into the classroom."
"Three hours later, I picked him up. He was ok until we got to the car when he said, in quiet sad voice 'l thought you were coming with,' followed by an even sadder quieter 'Why did you leave me?' "
" 'Can I wish for my sister?' - A 10-year-old student of mine whose big sister died 4 years ago. We were working on an activity about dreams and aspirations for their futures."
How Bad Must It Be?
"I was like 22 and it was probably 10pm or so at a Walmart. I was on my way to a party and stopped for beer. The store was fairly empty and as I was in the beer aisle, I see this kid completely by himself."
"He was about 5 and at first I thought it was kind of funny because he was trying to pick up a case of beer. I waited like 30-60 seconds, looking around for this kid's mom/dad to come get him. A couple people walked right by him like it was normal, so then I started getting worried. I picked up my two cases of beer and walked over and kindly asked him if he lost his mom or needed help."
"The kid completely ignored the question and instead was thoroughly impressed that I was strong enough to carry two cases of beer. Eventually an employee noticed and came over as well. I told her everything I knew and she took over and told him that she was going to bring him to find his mom."
"As he was walking away he kept looking back at me and I smiled and said goodbye. The kid stopped and said 'can I just come home with you? I don't like my mom.' "
"I was caught off guard so I just laughed and told him the lady was going to help him. Now I'll never know the full story, or what happened to him but the more I think about it - that kid more than likely had a pretty shi**y childhood."
"I mean, the store wasn't busy and it was late at night on a weekday. It really makes you wonder why he was there in the first place, how he got separated from his mom and why would he ask to go with a complete stranger instead of worrying about where his mom was?"
"It still makes me sad. Hope everything worked out for the little dude."
Others talked about the times when they or somebody else realized just how tragic their own circumstances were.
"My ex asked me what I liked to do with my family growing up."
"Made me realize my family never did anything together and I literally had no answer to such a basic question."
Seeing Another Version
"During college, parents took a friend and I out to dinner. Very normal dinner, chit chatted about whatever. After we left and were walking back to my car, he turns to me and says 'Is that what a normal relationship is like?' "
"We talked more after that, I had met his parents a few times and they seemed strict but never seemed to have a terrible relationship. Turned out apparently his dad had cheated on his mom multiple times, dad had zero respect for any of my friends sisters and essentially expected them to do all the housework while the men did 'guy stuff.' "
"Hunting, training for sports, school, etc. Turned out his childhood was pretty fu**ed, dad was never around and he had to essentially be the father figure in the house. As the oldest child, never really saw a normal loving relationship that he could look up to."
"My friend is a really nice guy, still has some messed up views of relationships though. I never realized how 'abnormal' my very normal family/childhood was."
A Better Place
" 'You've never beaten me or told me I couldn't do something. Is that normal?'
"My first girlfriend told me that. I have never felt such a wave of anger, sadness, and heartbreak wash over me like I did when I heard that"
And some people discussed the time a question destroyed their social confidence.
Worst Teacher Ever
"I have a stutter, when I was a kid I had to read a page of a book to the class. I stuttered, and the teacher said 'can you even read' and that fu**ing broke my 13 year old heart."
"No one takes stuttering seriously."
There's the Answer
"When I was 19, I hung out with a cute girl from my high school that I never got to hang with when we were in school. Had a great day together, and that night she asked, 'can we be like secret friends or something? I don't really hang out with people like you.' "
"Never hung out again."
Comparing and Contrasting
" 'Oh, are you the girl with the hot sister ?' " -- JustehOK
"I worked in a department with two Melissas. One day, I was sitting next to one Melissa when we overheard another coworker say to someone, 'have you seen little Melissa?' "
"The other Melissa got kind of a defeated look in her eye and said, 'oh, I'm big Melissa.' " -- EarhornJones
It's a list that's sad enough to leave one wondering about the questions they've received that struck them as particularly hopeless.
Sometimes, though, that vulnerability can be the start of accepting new realities and new possibilities.
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If you live on this earth and you're fortunate enough to form long-lasting relationships with different people, chances are you'll know the pain of heartbreak. It's an unavoidable fact of life.
We are not guaranteed to stay with one person forever, as we were reminded once Redditor disturbance of mirrors asked the online community,
"People whose long-term relationship faded, what was the final straw that made you realize it was time to call it a day?"
"The last time..."
"When she 'broke up' with me for the 12th time.
We had a long-distance relationship and whenever we had an issue or a disagreement, instead of engaging in a conversation with me about it, she would say we were done and shut me out for two or three days before coming back and manipulating me into groveling for her forgiveness. The last time, I just said no to going back and stuck to it. She freaked out and tried to drive 6 hours to my place at 2:00 a.m... I got a call from her mom saying she had left in the middle of the night as a head's up and, upon finally getting ahold of her when she was just a couple of hours away, I was able to convince her to turn back.
That relationship f***** me up for a while but, once I began dating my now fiancee, it was unbelievable to me how wonderful a real, loving relationship with healthy communication can be."
"Her brother was living with us..."
"Mine was not a slow burn like most seem to be, but a very definitive moment.
Her brother was living with us and this was right when WiFi was becoming available to the general public. We couldn't afford it cuz we were broke kids, so her brother would take my GF's MacBook (it was a gift) and sit on a nearby bus bench and leech off someone's unsecured WiFi.
Well, one day we get a call from her sister and she says we need to get home immediately. Turns out some guys came up and asked him for change for a $20 and when he told them he didn't have it they tried to snatch the Mac and jump in their car.
He knew it wasn't his so he held onto it and tried to get it back but they were too much. He had gotten dragged by the car, kicked in the head, and then had his leg run over. He was in pretty bad shape.
As we turn the corner (didn't know what had happened yet) GF sees cop cars and an ambulance and says "This better not have anything to do with my Mac. We walk in and he's visibly in bad shape and she is just immediately "Did you lose my Mac?" I'll never forget his face. He was so ashamed and felt terrible and just started crying. She however started screaming my computer! My computer! And hitting him. To the point where the cops considered arresting her. It was an instant eye-opener."
"I'd sit in my car..."
"I'd sit in my car after work playing on my phone for like an hour because I just needed a break before going inside and dealing with him."
That would do it.
"I would find any excuse..."
"I would find any excuse to work late or sometimes go sit at a bar by myself just to avoid the misery at home. We divorced."
"He was a workaholic..."
"He was a workaholic to the point that I saw him about 6 days per month."
"Somewhere between giving up on small talk and not looking forward to the weekends anymore."
That's no way to live.
"It really forced us..."
"Honestly it was the pandemic. It really forced us to actually spend time together and I realized we kind of just didn't do much together at all. I had spent years thinking it was cool that we kept our own friends and space but once those distractions were taken away it was just really clear to me that we were more roommates than a couple."
"When I realized..."
"When I realized I was needed and not wanted. Constantly trying to make someone happy who didn't want to be happy."
This one hurts. I've been there myself. (And I have also been that person––I thankfully got help.)
"We lived together..."
"We lived together but lived completely separate lives. Basically a housemate I shared a bed with. Happened twice to me so far."
"I would have moved mountains for him..."
"I knew it was over when I cared more about his wellbeing than he cared about his own wellbeing. I would have moved mountains for him if it made his life easier and he just continuously put himself in shi!ty situations. I eventually just gave up. I can't be with someone who doesn't care about themselves. Thank God that's over."
If you think you might be stuck in a pointless or unhealthy relationship, it's worth evaluating your options. And it's never worth sticking around and risking your emotional and mental health.
Have some stories of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below.
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There is always that "one." There is always going to be that person.
That person who you will always remember. And when they are the one who you regret losing most... they are the ghost that will haunt you forever.
I have a few escapees. I'll never know how it would've turned out. But that is part of why I'm haunted. I need to discuss....
Redditor u/AssistantNo1733 wanted to discuss all the times we've lost in love by asking:
Who's the one who got away?
Do we even have a clue that they're the "one" that got away? How long until it sinks in? And how do we not know there isn't another "one" coming behind them? I have no answers. Just asking...
The DraftEpisode 1 Omg GIF by RuPaul's Drag RaceGiphy
"The girl who summoned up the nerve to ask me out towards the beginning of high school. I was so humiliated by the life my family was living that I stalled until she gave up."
"Betsy, if by some stroke of dumb luck you're reading this... I'm so sorry. It was 25-27 years ago, but I still hate myself for that. You were beautiful, intelligent, a good person, and if I had anything resembling a stable, presentable home I would've said yes in a heartbeat... I had a crush on you since 7th-grade 'intro to drafting.'
I Love Her
"Weird, I was just confiding in my mom about this last night. I'm late but for catharsis's sake I'm going to post. My first girlfriend is a classic case of you don't know what you have until it's gone. She's the complete package. Beautiful, intelligent, compassionate, and so kind. We started dating when I was 17 and broke up when I was 21."
"For reference I'm 30 now. I was an idiot. I wanted to play the field. I wanted to party and hook up with college girls. It was fun at first but after a while I felt this gnawing hole in my heart. The feeling of doubt crept up slowly and still, a decade later my chest feels tight thinking about it."
"I didn't realize until my later serious relationships that getting along with your SO's family is so important. Her mom and step dad genuinely treated me like a part of their family. It's not a stretch to say I literally grew up with these people. I spent some of my most formative years with them. Birthdays, Thanksgivings, Christmases, you name it. They celebrated me and my accomplishments. They genuinely cared about me. Just amazing, salt of the earth, lovely people."
"Her birthday was in March and I sent her a text and we ended up talking for a bit. She's happily married and stable with a daughter and a second on the way. I'm genuinely so happy for her. She deserves happiness. I just wish I was a part of that. Sitting at work 10 years later I'm tearing up. I numbed myself out to it for years, it's so strange to me that I've been so stuck on her lately. Is this normal?"
15 Years Later
"My very first real love. I was a teenager and I didn't really know how to be comfortable in myself or with myself. I played silly teen girl games and lost him even as a friend. Now 15 years later I still think about R from time to time. I genuinely hope he's happy in his life."
"Edit: Wow this blew up while I was sleeping. Thanks for all the sweet words and to everyone with their "one" congratulations! I suppose I hadn't looked him up on social media because I'm scared, scared he won't respond, scared he will respond, scared he'll think I'm a stalker. I'm in a happy relationship now, but what if... Etc etc etc. But I'll give it a Google."
Missed You Muchrhythm nation dance GIF by Janet JacksonGiphy
A girl I dated in high school. Went on a date one time she took me out parking and I was too stupid to realize it.
"She always talked about moving away as soon as she got finished with high school. I always thought I would stay in a little town the rest of my life. Turns out I was the one who left and move to another state. Later I heard that she had told someone that I knew that she thought that we would be married at some point. Missed it by that much."
Ok... I've been a bit blind to the light. People can be cruel, but also highly creative. Why not just lead with the truth? It'll always hurt more after lies.
Chuck E.Chuck E Cheese Wink GIFGiphy
"Ah the rare AskReddit question I can answer."
"I met a wonderful woman circa 2013-2015. We worked at what I can best describe as an upscaled Chuck E Cheese. Or ghetto Six Flags. Your choice."
"We hit it off instantly, though at the time I was rather romantically inept. Eventually, she says she's leaving to join the Air Force. I tell her I'll miss her, and wished her well. The thought of asking for her number so we could stay in contact didn't even cross my mind."
"Cue the next day, I stop for lunch on my way to work, and as I'm walking to my car I hear my name being called. I turn around, and it's her, running toward me. Universe giving me a second chance, right? Wrong. My dumb butt still didn't ask for her number. She looked a little upset, and I still think about her often. Desiree, I hope you're doing well."
"He was my first and last love. I was 16 and he was 18 when we met. We bounced around like idiots, on again off again, finally got together mid 20s. We both fell into bad habits - drugs and alcohol, more booze for me, more drugs for him. We had some bad things happen that were pretty detrimental to staying sober. We would split, reconcile, get sober, fall off the wagon, split, etc... repeat as necessary. We realized we were very bad for each other unless we could BOTH just get sober for ourselves, and split."
"Ten years later, I was sober for 7 years (still am, going on 18 years end of this month, actually! Woo, go me!) and he was beginning to come back, sober about a year. He contacted me, we met, talked about trying again. He said that once he had been totally clean for a year, we'd do it. That whole "Don't make any changes for a year" thing. I would visit him, tho, things were good."
"He woke up one morning feeling bad, thought he had the flu. (This was pre-now) I stayed around because he was sick, but neither of us thought he was drastically bad, just the flu, right? He got worse and worse, finally we called an ambulance because he got up from a nap and couldn't breathe. He died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Aortic dissection."
"He got away, but someday I'll see him again. I never stopped loving him, and him me. We just weren't good for each other."
Ce la vie...
"My most serious Ex."
"Don't think I truly understood love until I met her. Loved her more than I ever thought I could love anything. It eventually ended when she told me that, through no fault of my own, she had fallen out of love with me. That was 2 years ago, still hurts to think/talk about."
"Ce la vie..."
"I'm in the middle of trying to avoid that right now actually."
"It's not worth the heartache trust me. I fought to stay in a relationship for an entire year. If I would've just let her go the first time she wanted there would've been a lot less pain. We would've left on good terms. I would've lost a lot less sleep. Rip the band-aid off because once the band-aid starts peeling it's inevitable it'll fall off with time."
Sweet...Kim Tate Eye Roll GIF by EmmerdaleGiphy
Damn man why bring this up.
"My ex and I broke up over 3 years ago. Mutual breakup through a lack of communication on both ends I feel."
"Thought I was over that hill until this week she messaged just to say hey and ask an innocent question. We text for the best part of the day and it's brought up a lot of old feeling. Feeling pretty bitter sweet right now."
Love is a mess. Why even bother trying if you can't be true? It's not hard to just spell out the situation. And if you're the one needing to put together the words... look closer. The dialogue shouldn't be difficult.
What are the odds you'd click on this link today?
What was the biggest coincidence that made you question the fabric of reality?
There's small coincidences, occurrences so minute that you wouldn't even notice them if you weren't paying attention. However, once someone makes a big deal out of them then there's no other choice but to acknowledge that what just happened was spectacular.
Each Having A Buddy Coming To Town
"My friend and I were on a road trip a few years ago and needed a place to stay. We both told each other we had a friend in the city we were going through, so we figured we'd be able to crash with one of them. Turns out our two friends were roommates and had both been telling each other that they had a friend coming to town soon."
What's That Got To Be? A 1 in 1000 Chance?
"Several years ago I was at a coffee shop with some friends and one of them had an ipad, another friend went to unlock it and asked him what his 4 digit unlock code was, so I just blurted out 4 random digits pretending like I knew it, and it actually worked. I had never unlocked it before or knew of the same numbers being used for anything else, or his phone number, etc."
Both Probably Assumed What The Best Time Was
"I passed out after receiving a flu shot when I was 28. The nurse who helped me up kept asking if I wanted my mom. It seemed like a really weird thing to offer an adult woman - the option to have her mother phoned and brought in - so I was really confused and getting progressively more annoyed at her repeatedly asking...
...until my mom walked up to me. She had the appointment after mine to get vaccinated. The nurses assumed we had come together, but neither of us knew about the other's appointment, and we lived an hour away from each other in different cities."
Living in such a big world can lead you to the conclusion that math is silly and odds are never in your favor. With over seven billion people roaming around, chances of meeting someone of significance?
Less than you think.
A Simultaneous Love Of Traveling
"This guy I went to grade school and high school with, an acquaintance at best. I've seen him in 5 different locations in different countries throughout the last 15 years.
Disney World when I was a kid.
Some beach bar in Thailand.
The Bean in Chicago.
A pub in Budapest.
A library in San Jose, Costa Rica.
We've become friends due our love of traveling, but neither of us post on social media and neither of us communicated with each other our plans to travel. We never talked outside of the random meetings. Now if I see him, its like the world wants us to have a beer together. haha"
"I Mean, The Crash, Yeah, But How Have You Been?"
"My dad lives in a national park here in Australia. It's farmland that's grandfathered in. It's the remnants of a volcano that blew itself up very violently, so it's very hilly terrain.
One day we were sitting out on the deck, when we see a hang-glider come down halfway down the valley, and it didn't look like a nice landing. "Sh-t, we better see if he's alright, they don't land anywhere near here"
So we get in the car, drive for about 10 minutes to reach the spot. We head over to the guy who is standing by a very damaged glider. The pilot is staring at us incredulously, he stammers "F-ck, Jack, is that you?".
My dad, who hasn't seen his childhood friend for 35 years shouts "F-ck, Tim, is that you?".
They both grew up in Greymouth, NZ. Found each other randomly after a glider crash in NSW, Australia."
Takes A Wedding To Bring People Together
"My wife and I were looking to hire a caterer for our wedding and when we met, my wife and her started talking about their lives a bit.
Turns out they had both literally grown up on the same street, in a city of 10 million people, on the other side of the world. Both had left the city around a decade before immigrating to our current country.
They knew the same people, had hung out at the same coffee place, attended the same church. They even used to grab mangoes off the same large tree that hung over the wall of one of the large houses in the neighbourhood.
But they had never met one another until meeting on almost the exact opposite side of the planet, in a small town of about 50,000 people."kor_hookmaster
What we can gain from these experiences is a coincidence will occur more than you think, you just have to have the eyes sharp enough to spot them.
But how would you explain these?
Position Is Key
"I dialed my mum on my mobile when I was on public transport and accidentally swapped two numbers around.
The person I called was on the same carriage."
"Go on, tell us what happened then!"
"So I was listening to my phone and at the exact moment it started the ringing sound I heard a phone start ringing and I thought it was a coincidence but then the phone answered and it wasn't mum.
All I said was "Oh, are you on the Upfield train?" and they said "Yes, who's this?" but I got shy and I hung up.
Poor guy must have been so confused."
Universal Echoes Bringing You Closer Together
"One time, me and my dad were discussing his friend while out driving at night without many other cars on the road. As we were talking, we pulled up to a red light, and the car waiting in front was my dad's friend. He didn't even live close to there."
Extremely Unlucky Odds. Go Buy A Lottery Ticket.
"A couple of years ago I was visiting my hometown and decided to sit on a bench at my favorite park. As I was sitting, I felt something land on my head. Bird poop. After heading home and washing my hair, I went back into town. While I walked around, I watched as a guy got hit with a drop of sky sh-t. As I was laughing about the apparent irritable bowel syndrome of the birds in my town, a bird flying right over me drops a fat sh-t on my head."
There's no magic at play. All of these happenstances can be explained away with simple math and rudimentary probability.
Still, it's fun to live when you're in the moment.