Listening to your gut can save your life. There is a reason why we have inner voices warning us about something that just does not feel right.
Sometimes, that uncomfortable feeling in the pit of your stomach alerting you of a suspicious situation can occur when you are alone or in some vulnerable state.
Whatever the case may be, it may be in your interest not to ignore your naturally built-in life alert.
Strangers on the internet shared their most vulnerable moments and fled the scene when Redditor firefly_girl_75 asked:
Nothing will make you hit a "panic" button more than when you feel trapped in a situation. Hopefully, you have the wherewithal to haul a**.
The Escape Route
"Living in Baltimore some years back and I was driving home through a rough area of the city. Sitting at a stop light behind an already stopped car, another pulls up next to me on the right. Not really thinking anything of this, the light turns green. Neither of these cars move and I see a car zipping up behind me. I look to my left and I see two guys running towards me. I am so thankful that I left a good deal of space between me and the car in front. I hooked it around the car I front and sped off. Pretty sure I was going to be a victim of a car jacking or maybe something worse. Glad they ill timed their plan and I gave myself that space. Lesson here is always keep your head on a swivel in Baltimore."
"I was on a restaurant and they were using a propane tank to power an outdoors heater. Suddenly the tank started to catch fire and I got out quickly because i thought it was going to explode."
"The staff turned the tank off and everyone laughed at me for overreacting but damn i got scared lol."
"I was in downtown NYC a couple of blocks away from the WTC gawking at a fire. There were tons of people milling around watching. They had blocked off some streets, and I asked a cop how I could get around to where I needed to go further downtown. He told me which streets were closed, but that they might expand it, so I should get moving. The conversation was pretty casual."
"As I started walking away I looked back, and he had his radio to his ear, and whatever he heard, he panicked, went as white as a ghost, and started yelling for people to move further back. I turned around and jogged the hell out of there and made it to the Brooklyn Bridge before the first tower came down."
You never know people's intentions, but usually, your gut has the correct instincts.
"My friend and I met at Waffle House for lunch. A guy came into the restaurant looking for a piece of paper that he had accidentally left on a table. The waitress didn't know where the paper was located and might have thrown it away. The guy got upset saying the paper was important and he was going home to get his gun stored under his mattress. My friend and I quickly paid our check and got the heck out of the restaurant!"
"I lived in south Everett WA for a couple years. Was walking home from the bus stop to my apartment, which took me behind the home depot. Suddenly a van starts following me, I hear the side door slide open and look behind me to see a man with the top half of his body hanging out the slider door looking at me. I took off running towards my apartment, literally running as far as I could, the van started going faster. By chance a guy was pulling out of the driveway of my apartment complex, sees me running for my life, and stops. The van immediately turns around and speeds off. Guy asks if I'm okay. I ask him to just stay there and please watch me walk into my apartment, which was the building next to his. He did, thank God. I started carrying mace and a very large knife the next day."
A Very Convenient Store
"A coworker got off the bus at night in Scarborough, Ontario and a guy stepped out from behind the bus shelter and started calling to her to wait up. He ran up to her, she screamed 'I don't know you' and ran into a convenience store. The guy hung around outside for a few minutes, then walked over to a vehicle and got in and drove off. She waited for a neighbour in her apartment complex to come over and walk her home."
"She filed a police report and it turned out she had narrowly escaped Paul Bernardo, then known as the Scarborough Rapist, later known as a serial killer alongside his wife Karla Homolka."
Out Of Our Control
Nature and animals figured into these scenarios alerting of danger.
"I was walking to my house from my ex house very early in the morning when I saw this little girl with a backpack running for her life from two big street dogs. At that moment I didn't think and I ran towards the dogs and missed a kick, the two dogs came after me biting my legs and arm. They were out of control and these were like the longest 5 minutes of my life. I couldn't stop them from biting me, the little girl kept running until I didn't see her anymore. It was just me and the dogs attacking me. I tried to climb a fence to get inside a house but I couldn't when a taxi driver stopped and went out of the car with a short stick and he tried to scare them off giving me a chance to run and without thinking I got inside the car, the guy just ran a couple of times around the car with the dogs behind until he got in and he drove off like really fast. He took me to the hospital where I got a lot of stitches on my legs, arms and hands. That guy is my hero. Every now and then I go to his taxi stop and give them sandwiches or something. We never knew what happened to those dogs."
Not Leaving Kansas
"I was driving north on I-65 in the middle of Indiana. The sky was getting dark, the wind was picking up, it started hailing ... I turned on the radio to hear that a tornado was nearby. I determined it was behind me going from SW to NE and about to cross over the interstate. Other cars were driving slow or pulling over because of the rain and hail...I was hauling a** to get away from there."
"I was solo camping in the woods during a phase where I wanted to be a survival expert. I hiked out, miles from any roads or building, built a shelter and then hiked back the way I came."
"Less than a mile away from my camp, I found a dead coyote, decapitated, gutted, and laid out like a sacrifice or something. The eyes were gouged out and it was strung across a big, flat rock. A rock which I used as a marker on the way in, so I know it hadn't been there a day before."
"I ran out of there as fast as I could, knife at the ready, probably 10 miles back to my house. I still have no idea who would have done it, but I know I didn't want to run into them in the woods alone."
Of course, no one should be in constant fear and being overly cautious when they are out and about. Otherwise, what's the point?
There is no point in living life always searching for emergency exits.
But when your built-in life alert signals to you that you need to get the hell out of, say, your house, just remember this tidbit:
Never run up the stairs.
It isn't always the case, but for many couples who go on to become married partners, there was a moment when it became clear and obvious that the other was their soulmate.
Like a lightning bolt out of a clear sky, the realization strikes and the truth feels inarguable: that person is who you want to spend your life with.
And while the epiphany is common, the specific circumstances around it are as various as the many couples who experience it.
Some Redditors shared their versions of that story.
For some people, the moment came when they observed their partner demonstrate an act of service.
There was something about the way they couldn't help but act, that their whole essence seemed to become obvious--and something their partner never wanted to let go of.
A Gentle Soul
"We were out swimming at the lake, and there was a ladybug in the water. He carefully picked it up and let it sit on his shoulder until it was dry enough to fly away."
"I've never met anyone who was so gentle with animals - his dog, my parents' diabetic cat who needed shots, friends' cats and dogs."
"We had fish at a restaurant for dinner. Didn't sit well with me and by the time we were back at his apartment my stomach and bowels were raging."
"I was so embarrassed that I was spending half the evening in his bathroom so he told me about the time he accidentally sh** himself at a 7-11. Keeper."
"My then-boyfriend and I had taken my wheelchair bound brother to dinner and a movie. When we got home I went to use the bathroom before going through the routine of getting my brother changed, meds, and into bed."
"I came out of the bathroom to him getting my brother out of the chair and onto the bed to change, all the while hilarious 'messing up' to make my brother laugh hysterically. I came right in to help but boyfriend shooed me away to do it all himself."
"It took triple the time but they were both in stitches, turning a usually admittedly mundane routine into a ton of fun. We'll have been married eleven years on the 22nd of this month."
Just a Look
"I had appendicitis. I had just come round from surgery and my mum, dad and now husband were there. We had been friends for years and had just started seeing each other. Both still very worried in case it went wrong."
"Well I was still groggy from the anaesthetic, but it was a womens only ward so they couldn't stay. But I didn't want him to leave. I was so afraid. No idea why, maybe the drugs idk. The look on his face as they led him out broke my heart."
"That's when I knew that man would always be there for me. I mouthed 'I love you' for the first time as he walked away. Been together 7 years now and married for 4. I love that man."
Other people experienced the epiphany when an interpersonal interaction took on a whole new weight, and they realized this was the person they wanted to always be with.
Time Passing Invisibly
"When our first phone call lasted over 8 hours. We both had so much to share with one another."
"I flew out to see him within a month. I quit my job of 11 years and moved to his city the following month. We have been together almost 9 years now, and he's still my favorite person to talk to."
When Even the Bad is Good
"We were at a low moment. Lots of bickering and stupid fights. I was still making her lunch every morning before she went to grad school, but it was a rough time in our relationship."
"And then I realized I never wanted to be fighting with anyone else. I wanted to work through our problems and spend my life with her. So we did, we've got two kids, and life is really good."
"All relationships have crisis moments. Find someone worth getting through those moments."
Another Side of Her
"My wife is a 'strong independent woman who don't need no man' Which I personally love how she wants to do and think for herself. But this also means she has lots of walls and won't let anyone in and always has to be a badass at all times."
"But in private I can make her blush and smile at will. It's a side of her nobody knows about but me, and I love it."
The Only Place
"My then-girlfriend and I were sitting on the couch one evening just talking. I don't even remember what we were talking about, probably something stupid, but I was struck by the sudden realization that there was no place I'd rather be."
"Just being with her, talking about serious topics or nothing at all, is perfect, and there's no place I'd rather be than with her."
Others, however, pushed back on the prompt.
They explained that, for them, there was no single moment. Rather, there was a slow build until they knew they were with the perfect person.
"I realized I had found my person when I started noticing changes in myself. I was more confident, happy, relaxed, and so on." -- Mamacourtney
"My boyfriend has chronic health problems and thus has a lot of bad mood moments in relation. But other than that? He's constantly happy, smiling, confident, and it makes me happy knowing that I've given him an environment that keeps his constant emotion happiness, with his health sprinkling in the rain cloud moods." -- Tomoyo_in_Transwise
A Partner, In Every Sense of the Word
"I hear this question a lot, and I never have an answer. Because I think one day you just come to the realization that living any part of your life without them would be awful."
"I got married not because I was madly in love but because I wanted her to experience all of life's highs and lows with me. I wanted to watch her succeed and grow as a person. I don't believe in soul mates, but I do believe in making a relationship work because it brings you joy."
For all you single people hankering for this feeling, trust that one day it will come your way. And for all those who have such a moment in their own biography, maybe today's a good day to reminisce about it with your partner.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
And those tiny little towns can seriously pack a punch.
You might only drive through for about 15 minutes, maybe fill up the gas tank and grab a drink from the corner store, but that's all it takes to catch a vibe.
There's something about the buildings, the people, or the desolate quality of the entire place that's enough to make your skin crawl.
Some Redditors took a moment to describe the towns that freaked them out completely.
sorvivordemigod asked, "What are some of the Scariest Small Towns in America?"
Plenty of people described the places that legitimately seemed haunted. Some people even treated readers to the backstory and broader context of the creepy place left behind.
Other times, they could just tell.
"Carpenter, WY. It's a super tiny town. I've only driven through once, so I can't say it's super scary, definitely creepy though. The one time I was there there was nobody outside except this little girl outside the town hall that just stared at us while we drove by, shaking her head the whole time."
"On the way out of town we did see a kid playing basketball in his backyard, so that mitigated the creepiness of the little girl."
Remnants of a Cult
"Rulo, Nebraska. The town has a real haunted vibe to it. Lots of abandoned buildings with no one around."
"Plus it was home to a Christian Identity cult lead by Michael Ryan in the early 1980's that tortured and murdered several members. Ryan was sentenced to death for the murders but ended up dying in prison before the sentence was carried out."
"Rod Colvin wrote a book about this cult called 'Evil Harvest.' "
Lived In, But Empty
"Yellowdog, PA. Here's one account."
"I guess it's not super scary, but one of my elementary school friends grew up there and I probably stayed there every other week for like ten years. They eventually moved out. It took maybe five years later and the whole place was abandoned."
"We went to visit not that long ago and it's fu**ing creepy. There are still toys and stuffed animals just lying around. The houses are in bad shape but they're all still standing, and you can absolutely just go in and have a look around."
"Hillsville, PA aka Zombieland. Some crazy local legends brewed up about that place over the years. Involving lighting a torch in the woods to begin your journey, a haunted bridge, graveyard & murder house."
"Was really fun to go there back in High school. Theres a really creepy underpass decorated in hundreds of statues of mother Mary before going up what seems a 90 degree incline to actually get up into the hills."
Other people explored creepy towns that drew their horror from more secular sources. The actual behavior of people and other man-made entities can sometimes be as scary as old legends or haunted ghosts.
A Fleet in Pursuit
"Colorado City, AZ if you are not known there, you will be followed by several white SUVs." -- brockdaywatch
"First place that came to my mind! You get a weird vibe driving through and seeing all these half built compounds and people just stare at you as you drive by" -- libtech1776
Let It Burn
"My GPS re routed me through Gary Indiana last week. There was a literal car fire in a neighborhood it routed me through."
"Seemed to have been burning for a while...no one around. 👍"
Guardians of the Tunnel
"Hawthorne Nevada was a very strange place. It has a navel base in the middle of the desert and a lake called walker lake that's rumored to have a tunnel for subs to go to the pacific."
"When I drove thru and stopped for gas there everyone wouldn't stop staring and it just gave me a vibe."
Finally, some people could point to a very true, historic reason for the way a place turned out. Natural disasters and other mass tragedies laid the groundwork for total eeriness.
"Newtown, MO. Part of St Charles I'm pretty sure. Place is eerie. The trees line up too perfectly. No noise. No dogs barking. No kids playing. Nobody just waking around."
"The houses are all less than 10 years old but nearly identical and made to look like 1910s-20s bungalows. Landscaping is pristine. Then 'downtown' there are frikkin massive animal statues and the buildings all look like the Parthenon."
"It feels like those videos demonstrating the effects of a nuke, if a place could feel like that."
"I'm surprised no one mentioned Picher, OK."
"When the Tornado went through in 2008, it destroyed a majority of the town. However, it was known for their piles 'chat' a residue that comes from Zinc mining. Little did the realize how incredibly toxic this was as it was used for building roads, sidewalks, and sandboxes."
"Kids of the area would even play in the piles unbeknownst to them the dangers associated with it. Eventually there would be an influx of cases of children having learning disabilities and a school guidance counselor sought to have the tests done to check for lead poisoning. The town became a toxic waste ground and the EPA had to force residences to evacuate the area."
"Going into that town know, it's nothing more than a grave-site - this video shows a documentary filmmaker (Dan Bell) walking through the town and showing what remains. Truly scary and at the same time depressing."
"Cairo, Illinois. Drove through a few times with my boyfriend when he was a truck driver. Had a very spooky and dark feeling to it. Only place open was a subway.. and all the lights in the parking lot were out."
"I looked the town up and apparently a flood had come through and destroyed most of the town years before. What was left was probably the most unwelcome, eeiry place I've had the dissatisfaction of visiting."
There's no doubt you've passed through just such a town in your day.
The question then becomes, did it pique your interest enough to go back, or spook you so much you never will?
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
It can be hard bringing a new person into your pet's life.
Reddit user, u/sugar-soad, wanted to hear about when you had to make the hardest choice of your life when they asked:
When The Partner Tries To Impose On The Pet's Territory
Your pet becomes just as much as part of your house as you do, forming their own favorite spots to lay down and finding their favorite chew toys. When you have a romantic partner, especially a new one, who comes in and thinks they have a greater stake in your home life when you've only just started dating then you know there's a problem.
Don't Come For The Dog
True story. I'm paraphrasing. My friend had his girlfriend spend the night at his house. While he was making her breakfast she began complaining about his "nasty dog". My friend told her, "You should stop complaining, the dog lives here and you don't".
They broke up a week later.
Don't Try To Outlive Cats
I remember him saying my diabetic cat needed to go so he could get a dog. We weren't even living together. I looked him dead in the eyes and said. "My cat will outlive this relationship" considering she was really sick at the time he said it was unlikely and stormed off.
We broke up 6 years ago and my cat is still going strong.
Look At The Time
Not me, but my sister was dating a guy who angrily accused her of loving her elderly cat more than him. She said she did -- she had had him for 14 years and they had only been dating for about a month.
Guess he wasn't expecting that because he just kind of shut up and left the house.
When The Partner And Pet Don't Mix
Sometimes, a person and an animal don't mesh well. That's the reason so many pet adoption services do so many background checks, home visits, and interviews, to make sure the person and pet being paired up are going to do well together for hopefully the next several years. Bringing a new person into their lives can sometimes lead to bad vibes rubbing off one another.
Fighting Like...Well, Like Cats And Dogs
Two friends of mine dated seriously years ago. Girl's cat had jealousy issues and peed on guy's shoes. Guy put cat in the bathtub and pissed on cat. Relationship didn't last much longer.
Edit: I really should have mentioned that he was wearing the shoes when the cat did this.
Animals Know. Oh, They Know All Right.
The dog chose me lol I divorced my husband and his dog destroyed his house and sadly wouldn't eat properly or do anything but stress until he came to live with me and my dog. But to be fair, my ex is terrible at pets. He just kept him outside all day and night with no interaction. The dog is a Great Dane and at the time it was me, my toddler and my dog in a little town house but we gladly took in the big guy over keeping him alone and miserable with his actual owner.
Spiders Aren't For Everyone, But, Wow. What A Jerk.
I bred tarantulas professionally for a few years. Most were in a specially designed shed outside, but I had a few in the house. Was totally upfront with people when dating, and if it was a dealbreaker, then no hard feelings.
I dated this one guy for a few months, but we'd always go out or to his [house]. I didn't really think much of it. Around month 4, he started getting annoyed and one day, straight up asked me how long it was gonna take to "sell a few spiders".
I thought he was talking about my actual job, so I was like, "oh, I sell them in bulk to a supplier. He's coming round on Tuesday, actually." And my bf was so relieved, but I couldn't really understand why.
So the dude comes round on the Weds and sees the tarantulas in the house and goes on an [absolute] tirade about how I lied to him, how I've broken his trust, and how he's gonna need time to heal. NGL, I just burst out laughing. I was like, "you really thought I was gonna give up my job for you?"
Well that was apparently not the reaction he expected. He stormed out, yelling about how I was such a dumb b-tch for not realising how great he was lmao. Tried to crucify me on social media, but he just ended up looking like an idiot lol
Then There's Those Truly Awful Reasons...
You'll know the moment. It clicks, right away. You have to choose either the life of your beloved animal or staying in a romantic relationship with a person who clearly has no interest in keeping them safe.
The choice should be easy.
You Can Just Tell
I found out my girlfriend was hitting my dog when I wasn't around. I left her and she was unable to admit that was the reason. I guess answering the question of "what happened to you guys?" With "oh he found out I was secretly hurting his dog" might make for awkward conversations.
How did you find out?
You can generally tell when someone's been hurting a dog or a cat based on their behavior towards that person. Like, if a dog that was previously super excited and happy to meet new people or interact with people that you bring over is now skittish and hides from specific people, or is suddenly aggressive towards them, there's a good chance that they've been hurt by that person or have seen that person hurting someone else (ex: a child).
I have a cat that has even placed himself between me and something that he thought was going to hurt me. It was the vacuum cleaner, but the thought was still there. Animals know when something is scary or dangerous, and will usually let you know how they feel about it in their own way.
...Dump That Chick.
I found out that me ex had been talking to her mom about putting my dog down while I was at work and just telling me she ran away or something. Before that moment I never would have thought I could have violent feelings towards a women. But now I know in my heart that there's a serious possibility I would have hurt her had she actually done it.
On the surface, it can't be easy choosing between a human and an animal. It might feel wrong in some ways. However, if you're a truly good pet owner, you know that their life and comfort matters just as much as any other living thing.
Even if it means going single for a little while longer, do what's best for every individual involved.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
In the words of every millennial who was once on Tumblr, adulting is hard. I’ve been a legal adult for nine years now, and I still don’t fully understand taxes. I just let TurboTax do its thing and hope for the best. They REALLY need to teach that sh*t in schools.
But I’m not the only adult who still feels like a child! I think a lot of us can relate to that. And to be honest, we can be very unprepared for what life throws at us.
The worst part is the cruel awakening that we actually have to, you know, do stuff on our own.
Choosing things is hard.
Having to not only make important decisions by myself (I expected that much) but also having to do so in a timely fashion uninhibited by indecision.
Having to make decisions is such a big thing for me. Intellectually, of course I knew I'd have to make decisions. I just want ready too make them without knowing the consequences and at the speed of life.
Errands eat up sooo much time.season 2 your shoe's untied GIF by SpongeBob SquarePants Giphy
How much time you spend just doing stuff.
"Oh need to replace my tire and that's over by the store, so while I replace the tire I can do some errands and I'll save time and be home in no time" three hours later "Okay just one more errand before I head home"
Also how putting off a small task just a couple days in a row can quickly amount to a longer chore/responsibility later. "Eh I can just leave this in the sink, get to it later before bed" x 2 days "Why is this grime caked onto this plate still I've been scrubbing for 10 minutes straight!"
That’s what delivery is for.
Being sick and having to care for yourself. Like when you were younger your parents would get the medicine, or the medicine cabinet would just be stocked all the time, etc. But here I am with a cold having to build up the energy to go to the supermarket to buy some asprin and throat lozenges all by myself.
Underwear gnomes are the true pests.
The endless cleaning. I had chores when I was a kid, but I had zero clue how much actual work went into keeping house. I cleaned my house this morning and by midweek it'll be a war zone of pet hair, crumbs, and dust. I don't even have kids wtf it's like the underpants gnomes show up when I'm asleep and mess my house up.
Another sh*tty thing is the crushing loneliness that comes with adulthood. Why didn’t they tell us that we would have no friends after the age of 25?
The only thing I miss about school.motivating bart simpson GIF Giphy
A lack of community. Growing up you have your elementary school. Each day you see your friends and participate in activities together. Sometimes they move away and sometimes you do, but it largely stays the same through high school and middle school. Flash forward to adulthood and you're just alone. You want to make friends IRL, but have no idea how to go about doing it without seeming creepy, desperate, or god knows what.
This is really hard when you are not overtly religious so you cannot join a religious community. My friend and I talk about this from time to time, it's arguably the hardest thing to deal with in life. It gets worse the longer you live, as you know you are outliving your generation.
The reason why I have cats.
You can go days on end without having to speak to a single person, at first it's a dream come true, after about 2 months you start talking to your toaster to pad the silence while waiting for your toast.
I literally haven't spoken to someone beyond saying thank you/no when buying groceries in months. At first it felt kind of freeing and now it's just kinda sad.
Ditto on this advice.
The inevitably of your parents dying. My dad just passed away and I'm 25...no one could have prepared me I guess.
I feel you. Mine passed away back in August when I was 28. There's nothing you can do to prepare for it, and I'm afraid I have no magic words to make it better. Just know you're not alone. I'll never say it gets "better," but it eventually starts to suck less and your hard days get a little less frequent. I'm so, so sorry.
The sad fact is, you have to start fending for yourself with no one to help you. And that’s terrifying.
Saving money is hard for this reason alone.
Basic home maintenance: when to change air filters, smoke alarm batteries, timing of lawn care, how often do you clean the gutters, are you supposed to clean under the stove, what is edging, how do you recycle, how to change locks, etc.
Not to mention the random costs that spring up. Trying to save up money? Good for you. Except your sink just sprung a leak so you need to pay a plumber to fix that. Now you can save money agai... Nope, car needs servicing. Okay, your can definitely save money now.... Wait, that leaky sink sprouted mold so now your bathroom needs to be gutted and redone.
We are all Squidward.
Being absolutely exhausted most of the time. I never thought I'd be the 'I hate everyone' guy. But I am and everyone can f*ck off.
We all become Squidward after hitting a certain age.
Me? I'm Patrick. F*ck your rat race.
As someone who has lost a parent, I can tell you that sometimes you will never be prepared for certain events in your adult life. Everyone’s experience is different, and sometimes adulthood just means figuring it out for yourself.
You got this, grown-ups of the internet. I believe in you