Man Confronts His Manipulative Ex-GF At High School Reunion, And He’s Not Sure If He Went Too Far
We all have an ex we wish we could just give a piece of our minds to. But should we? As we are about to see, it's not always a good idea.
I (33M) Confronted an ex (31F) during a high school reunion and don't feel good about it
I recently attended my 15-year high school reunion in my home town. I don't make back home very often, even though it is only an hour or so away from where I currently live. I still have good friends that live there so I was looking forward to seeing some familiar faces and reminiscing over a few drinks. My wife and I booked a hotel so that we could enjoy an evening away without worrying about driving anywhere.
The actual reunion festivities were OK, yearbooks, games, and cocktails and snacks, etc. I saw some old friends, laughed, saw people I hadn't seen in years...all the things a reunion is for. After a couple hours the party moved to the local bars where my night took a turn. At the first bar we arrived at I noticed that my ex-gf from high school was there. Here's a little background on my relationship with her.
We started dating my senior year, she was a junior. It was my first real relationship, definitely not so for her. We broke up numerous times during a 8-month period. She would break up with me and then have sex with one of her exes within a couple days, then come crying back to me saying she made a mistake. I was so naive I took her back. I later found out she did this so she could claim she never technically cheated on me. She would throw parties at her parents place and not invite me but invite her exes. Then she would gaslight me and tell me she never had a party and her exes weren't even there. I was so young and stupid and new at relationships I didn't know any better. She would lie to me about where she was and who she was with all the time, and when I confronted her she would tell me I was crazy. Shortly before I graduated, one of her friends pulled me aside at a party, saying she had to tell me something. She confessed that my EX had been purposely playing games with me for the entire relationship.
My EX knew I had never had a GF before and she thought it would be fun to see how much she could get away with in a relationship, true sociopath shit. I broke up with her the next day and pretty much cut contact completely. She tried to contact me when I was in college and I was at least civil with her, but never confronted her about everything I knew she had done during our relationship. Anyway, this whole ordeal gave me severe trust issues that took me years to overcome and cost me a lot of friendships and relationships along the way as I dealt with the issues my relationship with my ex caused. Eventually, I met my wonderful wife and I am the happiest I have ever been.
Back to the reunion. I hadn't seen my ex in at least 5-years, we'd both since married. I made no effort to approach her and sat at a table with my wife and some friends. When my ex noticed me, she approached our table and started talking with us, she had clearly been drinking more than we had. After a few minutes she asked me for a hug, which I declined. I told her it was good to see her, but that I simply wanted to enjoy an evening with old friends. She got pissed, called me a few names, and said she's more than an old friend, we were more than friends. All those years of pent-up feelings finally came flowing out of my mouth. I calmly told her that no, we are not old friends, and we are not current friends. I then went through everything she had done to me. The lying, the cheating, the gaslighting, the manipulation. I told her that I knew she played games with me on purpose, that she pushed me to see what she could get away with. I didn't raise my voice, I didn't insult my ex, or call her names.
Everything I said was very matter-of-fact and straightforward. The jaws of everyone at the table were on the floor. No one except my wife had heard me talk about these things before. My friends were shocked, my ex was on the verge of tears, and my wife held my hand tight under the table. I ended by telling my EX that again, it was good to see her, but we are enjoying a private conversation over a few drinks and she left our table. We finished our drinks and decided to go to a different bar.
Shortly after we arrived at the new bar, a man I didn't know angrily approached me and demanded that I apologize for insulting his wife. He was my exes husband, who I had never met before. Apparently my ex went back to him in tears, crying that I had called her a crude name for a female dog and a synonym for a woman of ill-repute. I explained to him what happened, backed up by the rest of the people at the table. I told him I was sorry his wife was upset, but that I had never called her any names or insulted her in any way and that I simply wanted to enjoy the rest of my night. He eventually left when it was clear I was not going to apologize. Shortly after, a group of my exes friends came into the same bar as us, and they too confronted me about being an *ss-hole. I decided I had enough of this small-town, high school drama bullsh*t and my wife and I left and went to our hotel.
On our way home, my wife told me she was proud of me for confronting my ex like that and that she hoped it was a cathartic experience. I don't really feel like that. I'm not proud, I'm not glad I got this stuff off my chest, I'm not happy I had a chance to confront my ex. Yes, her actions had a negative impact on my life for a long time, but everything she did to me led me to become the man I am and have the life I live.
Was it wrong of me to unload 15-years worth of pent-up emotional damage on an unsuspecting ex? Should I have just given her the hug she asked for and went our separate ways? I can't help but feel guilty for some reason, like I caused unnecessary hurt on a person who just wanted a hug. Should I have kept my mouth shut?
TL:DR: Confronted an EX during a high school reunion with my long list of grievances when all she wanted was a hug and I don't really feel good about it at all.
Here was some of the advice he got.
She didn't just want a hug - she wanted validation for treating you like shit when you were younger. You are oversimplifying her motives and trying to ascribe innocent-ish motives to someone who just didn't have them. Hell, given her track record, it's not impossible that she was having issues with her husband and wanted to use you to get back at him.
You didn't approach her and you gave your ex ample opportunity to leave the situation. She cornered you and you reacted accordingly.
I'm glad your wife is so supportive of you. Sounds like high school reunions should be a skip for you from now on.
There are good reasons why I don't go to my hs reunions. Not worth stirring up old, kiddo-times drama that has no real bearing on everyone's actual lives anymore.
No it was not wrong for you to say something. She's the one who approached you and tried to rewrite her own history and you just corrected her.
No you shouldn't have just hugged her. You didn't want to and that is completely normal and okay. Of course you wouldn't want to hug some nut case who had been so cruel to you.
I support what you did. You stood up for yourself when confronted. I think it's a good thing.
Dude, you did exactly what everyone that's ever been wronged by a partner has wanted to legally do. You don't have to be proud of it, but I honestly think that, in the end, this experience will have a positive effect on your life and maybe the lives of others.
You were amazing. Your wife is amazing.
You feel badly about it BECAUSE YOU'RE SUCH A GOOD PERSON, and you had to deal with no-good people. But the truth needed to be out there for all to see. You shined the light where it was dark. It leaves a weird taste in your mouth because it is unpleasant dealing with bad people, not because you did the wrong thing.
You should not have hugged her because you did not want to hug her. You politely declined the hug and she then essential asked you to justify why you were not willing to hug her.
Could you have been nicer? Probably. Could you have left some things out and simply say, "I don't see it that way, I am not interested in reliving the past with you and am only interested in spending time with the people at my table"? Yeah, but you still would have been a jerk in her mind for not hugging her.
But what you did is not terrible and you are not a monster who inflicted mental anguish on someone. Most likely she is drunk and cried to her husband and anyone who listened and they confirmed that you are an jerk (even though from your side you are not) and she feels vindicated.
I would spend zero time worrying about this she is fine, your wife is amazing and you sound like you are a compassionate and loving husband.
You tried to politely let her know you weren't interested in interacting with her and she got childish about it. Confronting implies you started it, you didn't. And I know it's childish to point out who started it, but I think it's significant here. You were polite, she started name-calling you and saying you're her friend because she wanted validation from you, like it's still your responsibility to handle her mood swings.
It's not, so you told her exactly why you weren't. It was a power play, and going crying to her husband was also a power play, it wasn't about how much you did or didn't hurt her. It's okay that maybe you don't feel proud that you reacted so strongly, but please don't feel ashamed. Personally, I would have done the same if one of my high school/childhood bullies or abusive ex-friends tried to hug me and then got abusive over me asking them politely to leave.
Nope you were not wrong. It is good it didn't feel good to you. You didn't do it to feel good. You did it to finally let her know she did not get away with something. I actually see this as a valuable learning tool for her. Who knows who she is still manipulating. Yet somehow, the universe lined out a way for her to get some sweet karma. You did it not only for yourself, but for anyone else she was using.
You weren't wrong. She was disrespecting your wife when she wanted that hug and when she hinted at how more then friends you were. She hoping to create drama and jealousy. She has not changed.
The good news is that you never have to deal with her again. The even better news is that you know your wife is a quality woman who has your back.
But to be on the safe side I would set all of your social media accounts to private. Highschool Ex sounds like the type to do a little internet stalking.
Don't feel bad, you did no wrong. She pushed, you just gave her the facts. If she was upset about hearing the actions she took brought out into the cold light of day, then something tells me she either knows what she did was wrong and refuses to own it, was simply upset that everybody knows now, or was just upset that you didn't let her off the hook like she wanted you to. What goes around comes around and I think in this case you were what's coming around. You were far kinder than I think I would have been.
Either way, her behaviour makes her sound like a literal psychopath. Being charming, manipulating, pathologically lying, constantly needing for stimulation from other men, lack of empathy for you - all hallmarks of psychopathy or at the very least, a fairly damaged personality. For real.
I know it's the war cry of this sub but I'd seriously consider talking to a professional of some sort.
People often have this thought that if they could just face down the person who wronged them, damaged them, lied to them, or hurt them, and if they could just let go with both barrels and really let 'em have it, that somehow it would make everything all better. That they're only holding onto their pain because they haven't had the opportunity to give it back to the person who strapped it to them in the first place.
Now I won't say that this kind of thing can't be cathartic, far from it. But I've found that more often than not, all this sort of 'catharsis' does is take your righteous head of steam away and it leaves you feeling unhappy, sort of empty. It's like holding something bitter in your mouth - even once you spit it out, that taste likes to linger.
I think on some level that you forgot you were holding something bitter in your mouth and it wasn't until your ex pushed you that you realized how awful it tasted. I think talking to someone might help you work through that.
Best of luck. You seem like a standup dude and your wife sounds like a gem. You'll be alright.
Reddit user Jacob4L asked: 'America is having a house party. What does your state bring and do?'
Different regions around the world are known for specific foods and customs.
In the United States, each state becomes officially and unofficially known for certain things.
Like if you think of Pennsylvania you might think cheesesteaks or the Amish. Nevada might bring thoughts of gambling.
California might evoke beaches or Hollywood. Alaska is known for it's wilderness and fishing industry.
If you say Florida Man you associate batsh*t escapades in the news, transphobia and book bans—we're looking at you, Ron.
Each state has their own flag, motto, bird, flower and in some cases an animal or food.
The Maine Coon cat is the official state cat of Maine.
Bee Felten-Leidel on Unsplash
So what if all the states held a big party and everyone brought what they're known for?
Reddit user Jacob4L posited:
"America is having a house party. What does your state bring and do?"
"North Carolina: We show up as twins, one brings pulled pork with Eastern NC sauce, the other shows up with ribs covered in Western NC sauce. We proceed to get drunk on shine and argue bitterly over which is better."
"Our little brother (South Carolina) shows up with some grilled chicken covered in mustard based sauce, and we forget our argument and gang up on him for being a complete disappointment to the family."
"South Carolina brings a Bible and spends the first part of the evening preaching and the last part getting drunk and fighting about BBQ sauce."
"Tennessee. We bring whisky, a guitar for a sing-a-long and Dolly Parton."
"Virginia: Eastern Virginia will bring chips with that white sauce that confuses so many people."
"Central Virginia will bring tons of different craft beers and wine."
"Northern Virginia will bring company-branded fleece vests to hand out as party favors."
"I got no idea what goes on in the western part of the state, to be honest."
"Western Virginia? Moonshine."
"Georgia brings several party trays of fried chicken and waffles as well as an obscene volume of IPA beers."
"Spends the evening standing around the trucks outside with Alabama, Tennessee, the Carolinas, Florida, and Mississippi talking about mudding, camping, fishing, and hip-hop."
"Louisiana here. We will bring crawfish, gator bites and beer. It’s the best we can do."
"Florida dances on the table, but falls off and puts a hole in the wall."
"We bring Florida man, he brings national news coverage."
"We’ll bring the folding chairs."
"Kentucky—we come in riding a horse. We bring Kentucky fried chicken, good bourbon and tobacco. After the bourbon we drink mint julips."
"West Virginia brings the couch to burn on the porch."
"West Virginia will definitely bring pepperoni rolls."
"We bring cheese dip! It was invented in Little Rock, Arkansas! Then we call the Hogs!"
"Arkansas. Gon' bring possum stew and cheese dip, then insist on saying grace."
"My state has a state meal, so I'm apparently bringing all the things: 'The official state meal of Oklahoma consists of fried okra, cornbread, barbecue pork, squash, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries (state fruit), chicken fried steak, pecan pie, and black-eyed peas'."
"Texas. We'll bring Barbecue Beef Brisket and all the guns & ammo for the shooting events."
"Texas brings steaks and a Bible for everyone. Then proceeds to let your 9 year old play with their gun."
"Eeeeee! New Mexico shows up late with his homies in a low rider and brings several 30 packs of Bud Light. Then his abuela brings some green chile enchiladas and biscochitos for dessert."
"Arizona, We'll bring Sonoran dogs and tequila and turn the thermostat to 110º."
"Nevada. Gambling and hookers baby!"
"Colorado is bringing weed and also bringing the psychedelic mushrooms. We’re pretty much the best party guest anyone could ask for."
"Utah brings the Jell-O and turn their nose up to all the sinners."
Pacific Coast Vibes
"Oregon would bring weed, craft beer, and Tillamook cheddar with crackers."
"Alaska. We are driving down and I’m gonna beat up Texas (who’s been telling everyone they’re the biggest guy)."
"Also I’m gonna tell everyone I like Hawaii, but Hawaii is gonna say 'I barely know Alaska'."
"Washington is our friend. Washington always lets us come over and hang out."
"Washington and Alaska. Both would probably bring salmon, crab and Indigenous dancing."
"California is hosting the party and paying for everything you damn cheapskates."
"From Hawaii we bring lau lau, Kalua pork, hula and aloha!"
"Hawaii, can you bring spam masubi too?"
Head Back East
"A drunken Montanian riding a horse inside, with a plate of Rocky mountain oysters."
"Idaho. We're bringing the potato salad, mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, potato chips, potato bread, French fries, tater tots, and vodka."
Did anyone remember to invite Wyoming?
"South Dakota will just be outside on its Harley drunk, revving the engine trying to impress chicks until 3am keeping the neighbors awake."
"The Juicy Lucy. 100 years ago Minnesota discovered you can put cheese inside the hamburger and we've been riding that high ever since."
"Please talk to us we're surrounded by corn and Wisconsin."
"Iowa. A couple of cases of Busch Light, corn and the Pork Producers trailer grill to start grilling chops. We spend the entire night with Minnesota and Wisconsin making fun of Nebraska."
"Nebraska shows up with a massive Snickers Salad in an old, gallon-sized ice cream bucket and a 30-rack of Busch 'Lattes' shouting 'GOOOOOOO BIIIIIIIIIIIG REEEEEDDDDD' in the blind faith that someone, somewhere will respond 'GOBIGRED!!!' And they will. They will."
"North Dakota is bringing lefse, rolled with butter and sugar."
"And you’re all gonna love it!"
"Wisconsin. I show up undetectably drunk. I bring Cannibal Sandwiches which is ostensibly raw ground beef on white buns."
"I'll have a better time talking to your grampa than any of you and I'll sneak out the back door when I'm ready to leave so that I don't hafta say 'bye'."
"Missouri brings toasted ravioli and gooey butter cake, then gets trashed on Boulevard, Logboat, and Schlafly beers, while the under-21s have Fitz's and Vess."
"Also, a fistfight with Kansas breaks out and Branson plays country music."
"Kansas. We bring bread. We stand in the middle of the party but everyone ignores us except to make jokes about The Wizard of Oz. Unless it's March, when suddenly everyone wants to talk sh*t about our basketball teams."
"At some point we'll get in a fight with Missouri, but we will throw down with anyone who attacks Missouri when the inevitable BBQ war starts."
Home of Industry
"Michigan. We bring coney dogs, ginger-ale, and superman ice cream (you're welcome)."
"What do we do? Get drunk, play some Motown, start a fight with Ohio, then get them to join us to help us throw down with California about who had the real music center of America."
"We (us and Ohio) lose, but we spend the rest of the night licking our wounds, commiserating about how much California sucks, and texting Canada trying to coax her to join the party."
"Illinois. Probably bring the Malort, Italian beef, deep dish pizza, and hot dogs with mustard, onions, green relish, diced tomatoes, and sport peppers on a sesame seed bun and some celery salt on top."
"Indiana brings some big a** tenderloins, plays cornhole the whole time, and takes 90 minutes to say goodbye."
"Ohio’s party contribution is a mixed bag."
"Everyone is obsessed with the Buckeye candies they brought but are so sick and tired of the bragging about OSU national championships from a long time ago every time they go to grab one."
"There is now a hefty supply of Bloody Marys at this party thanks to Ohio bringing a gigantic shipment of its state beverage tomato juice."
"Fortunately, Ohio has also brought Smuckers jam to go on toast when everyone’s hungover in the morning."
"Pennsylvania is the second person to arrive, just behind Delaware. It’s a good thing that PA arrives early, because PA brings the best food items—Turkey Hill Ice Cream, Utz Potato Chips, Hershey’s Chocolate, and Wooder Ice."
"Despite smelling slightly like cow manure, PA is generally liked by the rest of the party attendees, but when the conversation shifts to football, PA suddenly wants to fight everyone else at the party."
"Pennsylvania and Ohio will also bring the Amish—who will build us a shelter for if it rains."
Mid-Atlantic In the House
"With an armful of Half Smokes and DCBrau, Washington DC tries to explain to the bouncer that he is not exactly a state but he belongs at the party."
"The bouncer begrudgingly let’s him in after examining his DC drivers license for a full minute and conferring with the other bouncers."
"Once inside he bops his head lightly to the music and tries really hard to restrain himself from asking everyone 'So what do you do?'.”
"Maryland is bringing steamed crabs. But we’re late because we drive 20 miles under the speed limit."
"Delaware: that awkward guy that just shows up first and most people don’t know who he is. But hey we brought drinks for everyone and we won’t tax them."
"New Jersey. The best Italian food in the Western Hemisphere. Maybe an old mobster for protection if you know a guy who knows a guy."
"New York brings pizza and won't shut up about how it is better than everyone else's food and they just HAVE to try it. He also interrupts people and claims he is better than everyone."
"Massachusetts, New Jersey, and the South hate him but California doesn't mind hanging out with him for a little bit."
"Vermont, We bring maple syrup, b*tch and moan about all of the out-of-staters that we’re driving to said party, craft beer, and weed."
"Connecticut brings lobster rolls and weird craft beer and cries because New York and Massachusetts ignore it. Then it goes off and drinks with Rhode Island and is okay."
"Connecticut with airpods in, quietly sitting in between Massachusetts and New York on the couch while they scream at each other about the Red Sox and Yankees."
"The great state of Rhode Island brings a crock of seafood chowda and complains about how far we had to drive to get to the party."
"Massachusetts are bringing alcohol, chowder, lobster rolls, and some fluffernutters for those who’s drunk food is sugary. Dunkin’ donuts, munchkins and coffee of course."
"We will also bring our sports superiority complex and argue with everyone about it so everyone will learn why Maine calls us Massholes."
"New Hampshire. We’ll bring lots of liquor from the state-run tax-free liquor stores, and we will spend the party chanting 'Live free or die!' And probably arguing with Massachusetts."
"Maine rides in on a wicked huge moose with a Dunkin' regular spiked with Allen's Coffee Brandy in one hand and a Tim Horton's double-double in the other. We bring red hot dogs, whoopie pies, Moxie, Humpty Dumpty all-dressed chips and our buddy New Brunswick, Canada so we don't have to talk to New Hampshire."
"We tell the flatlanders wanting lobster we don’t give that away for free—it’s wicked expensive for a reason."
"We'll throw a wicked beat down on Massachusetts after they say for the hundredth time we used to be part of their state and they used 'wicked' to describe everything before we did."
"When it gets wicked dark, Stephen King and Joe Hill show up to scare the crap out of everyone with stories around the bonfire."
"New Brunswick, Canada, Maine's next door neighbour, arrives with enough poutine to feed the multitudes."
"Quebec, Canada files a noise complaint against their loud neighbour. Ultimately, it's ignored."
"British Columbia, Canada is the neighbour next door slightly jealous for not getting the invite but also a bit scared to visit because those neighbours can be a bit crazy. California, Washington, Alaska and Oregon finally convince them to come."
"Ontario, Canada brings an LCBO 8pk of 8 different craft beers you’ve never heard of, and immediately starts trying to convince New York that Daylight Savings Time is garbage, and bitching about Quebec."
"Alberta, Canada brings steaks, while Saskatchewan, Canada brings home made bread. Both of them spend most of the night hanging out with Texas and start sh*t talking Ontario."
"Manitoba, Canada brings mosquitoes."
"The other Canadian Maritime Provinces—Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island—show up piss drunk and have a loud and obnoxious conversation amongst themselves, excluding New Brunswick who's too chummy with Maine and Newfoundland just because they're Newfies.
"Newfoundland, Canada brings a cod fish and rum, and insists that everyone present kiss the fish and take a shot."
"Quebec, Canada finally decides to come bringing ridiculously strong beer. Complains about Ontario to anyone who will listen. They try to flirt with Louisiana en Français, but they get weirded out when they realize they’re cousins. Ends up going home with Ontario at the end of the night."
"Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut tell the First Nations the colonizers are all gone and they shut down the border before they can come back."
"Then Kaná:ta has a BIG party."
"Scotland and Ireland would be taken into the fold with the moonshine and hard liquor group. Everyone would just be sitting around a bonfire passing around sips of the tasty stuff. Each country/province/state has to bring their best storyteller to this fire."
"Don't worry, all of our accents are basically the same when we are drunk. The slang is where things get dicey, but if the storyteller is worth their weight in salt, it's going to be fine."
"Minnesota will sneak in Norway and Sweden as Cousin Olaf and Cousin Sven. Oof, da!"
"Australia shows up already drunk and proceeds to drink all the beer and complain that it's weak as piss. But we did bring party pies and sausage rolls."
"The UK is imposing upon the party unannounced. England is intoxicated and attempting to dominate blasé Scotland; Scotland has copious amounts of whiskey to appease America’s indignation at the UK’s indiscretion."
"Wales has rarebits and hovers disconcerted behind Scotland. Northern Ireland brings Irish whiskey and a Bible and strides over to the Bible Belt states for a bit of religious contention."
"England makes everyone cups of tea at 2 hour intervals."
"Mexico shows up at around 2AM, seven deep, and with a worm as a mascot."
"Texas immediately picks a fight with them and at the same time tries to get them to share their food."
Maarten van den Heuvel on Unsplash
It certainly sounds like a wild time.
Do you think your fellow citizens nailed your state?
What would you add?
There are situations in life that seem harmless to some but can be considered offensive or upsetting to others. If everyone involved is civil about it, an apology is issued, forgiveness is given and everyone moves on with their lives. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case, as sometimes logic goes out the window and someone gets offended by, say, a toddler wearing a NASA shirt because they don’t actually work there. This situation, and countless others, were shared on Reddit by people who remain confused to this day with interactions they had where they would gladly apologize if they knew what to apologize for. Be prepared to be baffled and confused while reading the list down below!
Huffing And Puffinggrey canoe on calm body of water near tall trees at daytimePhoto by Aaron Burden on Unsplash
I work at a summer camp and on the first day, we always let the campers vote on a mascot that we use for the rest of the summer, as a sort of bonding thing. This year, the kids voted for a wolf as the mascot. It was almost unanimous, but one kid, probably about 9 or 10, threw a fit, because he believed that wolves were “bad guys.”
He also claimed they were predators and killers, so he didn’t want to be a wolf, he wanted to be a hero. He refused to participate in any team activities because he didn’t want to be on a team with the “bad guys.” We even brought in a guy one day in a full wolf mascot costume and the kid got upset and threw a massive tantrum.
I almost felt like we were going to learn at some point that his brother was taken away by wolves or some other tragic origin story. I did feel bad for the boy because I was fairly certain he had some kind of unaddressed emotional difficulties or something, but we weren’t going to change the mascot name that almost everyone voted for.
Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover
I was in a car accident a few years ago and it messed my leg up. Since then, I've been using a walking stick. One day, I was walking to the shop and an old bloke gave me the dirtiest look I've ever seen. What he said next was unbelievable. He told me: "What do you need a cane for? You're only a kid." He actually got quite irritated at just the sight of me using a stick.
Like, my dude, I'm just out trying to buy some milk. I don't need your judgement today. I didn't say that out loud though, I just said it to myself after I got home.
Around 22 years ago, I had a phone interview with a baking company. I didn’t care to have my peers know what I was up to so I took the call on my cell phone in my car. The call was crystal clear and no technical issues. At one point, he mentioned the weather and asked how it was there. I told him I was sitting in my car and could see it was snowing.
The interviewer asked me, “Are you taking this call on a cell phone?” I told him I was. He then asked me if I thought that was appropriate. I asked him what he meant by that. He said he thought it was kind of rude to take a formal call on a cell phone. I told him I would be more than happy to conclude the interview if talking on a cell phone was an issue.
If he was interested, I’d be happy to continue it the next day when I’d be at a desk. He again repeated how rude he thought it was that I had called from a cell phone and that there was no need to continue the interview process. I disagreed with the first point but did agree with the second. To this day, I wonder what the big deal was.
I had a science teacher who refused to acknowledge page 666 in our textbook. He would refer to it as page 666-a. So when he counted pages he would say 664, 665, 666-a, 667, etc.
One time my friend got offended when I put on my seatbelt because she thought I was commenting on her driving ability.
Witch One?person holding black smartphonePhoto by Luis Villasmil on Unsplash
We use an app at work called Bonfyre. One employee refused to use it because they claimed that bonfires are for witchcraft and pagans.
Missed A Spot
I spent nine hours deep-cleaning the house for an inspection. I went above and beyond, clearing my work schedule and going the extra mile, but my roommate insisted on double-checking my work. He had a complete psychotic meltdown because I forgot to sweep underneath the couch. I moved out the next day and never spoke to him again.
More Catty Than A Cat
I was at the vet with my cat and he happened to sneeze. This act was apparently very offensive to an elderly woman who was there with her corgi. She started screaming at me for about 30 minutes about pet hygiene.
The Power Of Pink
There was this time at school when this guy didn’t have a calculator and asked the class if anyone had one he could borrow. Someone did and was kind enough to offer it to him. However, when it was revealed that the calculator was pink, the guy refused. He claimed he was offended that this person would try and give him something so girly.
I'm a nurse at a children's hospital and one day I was wearing Mickey Mouse Halloween scrubs that had little dancing skeletons on them. The intention was to get into the Halloween spirit and have some fun. Unfortunately, a visitor of one of my patients didn’t see it that way and complained that I was wearing "scary and inappropriate scrubs."
Stumpedwhite monitor on deskPhoto by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash
When I was a child, my mum paid for something with a check. The cashier remarked that my mum had nice handwriting. Out of nowhere, to the surprise of the cashier and myself, my mum flew off the handle and stormed out of the shop in an outrage. I didn’t know what happened then, and to this day, I still have no idea what happened.
It’s OK Not To Be OK
I remember I once got into an argument with someone on the internet because they stated it was offensive for me to not want to have my anxiety and I should be proud of it. No thanks, Becky, I completely disagree. I don’t know about you, but I'd prefer to live my life without the constant feeling that something's going to go wrong.
A Simple No Would Have Sufficed
One time when I was working the drive-thru at a fast-food restaurant, I had a customer get offended when I asked them, “Would you like to make the burger a meal?” as I do with every customer who doesn’t specify if they want a meal. They screamed about how they already knew what they wanted and couldn’t handle me trying to do my job and upsell them.
Honest To God
Back when I was in grade school, one of my teachers was discussing something, I don't exactly remember the context, and said, "God or a god" in order to be neutral to those with various religious beliefs. That wasn’t good enough for one girl in my class, who got so upset and offended about it that she started bawling and saying how he was being disrespectful towards her beliefs.
Brother From The Same Mother
I had someone get offended by me calling my brother "bro." They insisted that I was being inappropriate and that white people couldn’t be related to Mexicans. Like, seriously lady? That's not how genetics work. We are 100% related and are a mix of white and Native American. It’s not that unheard of for one biological sibling to come out lighter or darker than the other.
And even if we weren't related, again I ask, seriously? I'm inappropriate for calling someone close to me my bro despite being different skin tones? Seriously? Thank you for coming to my rant session. Have a good day.
It Means What It Meansgrayscale photo of woman covering her face with her handPhoto by Sherise Van Dyk on Unsplash
I was typing in someone's phone number to activate their rewards card. I finished typing it in, found her name, proceeded with the transaction, and said, "You're good to go." The woman replied, "What is that supposed to mean?" and proceeded to give me a fiery glare as if I just personally kicked her toddler across the store.
"It means I found your information. You'll get your points." The woman, "Oh. Okay then." I still can't figure out why she flipped out like that. It was a rewards card, she got her points and she got her discount.
There was this guy at a Halloween party I was at who was dressed in a giant bacon costume. Some girl started yelling at him for being so offensive toward Jews and Muslims…all while being neither Jewish nor Muslim herself. There was a guy at the party who was Muslim and asked her what she was talking about, but she didn't back down.
I have no idea why people feel the need to go out of their way to be offended on behalf of people who…aren’t offended.
There was this guy at a Halloween party I was at who was dressed in a giant bacon costume. Some girl started yelling at him for being so offensive toward Jews and Muslims…all while being neither Jewish nor Muslim herself. There was a guy at the party who was Muslim and asked her what she was talking about, but she didn't back down.
I have no idea why people feel the need to go out of their way to be offended on behalf of people who…aren’t offended.
My friends told me about a virtual school board meeting they recently attended on how a return to school was going to work. The students and teachers who would be taking part in the return were jokingly labeled as being “guinea pigs” for the plan. As if the situation wasn’t difficult enough, someone got offended at the use of the term guinea pig, claiming it was inappropriate. That was a new one to me.
Don’t Be A Color-ist
Someone once got offended because I used the word black in conversation. Thinking about it still makes me laugh. I was talking about an article of clothing and how it was the color black. They tried to make it into something about race, and that I shouldn't use the term black anymore, and should say African-American. I said that makes no sense as I'm literally talking about the color black.
Am I supposed to say I'm wearing an African-American colored shirt? Maybe I'm crazy but I think that's actually offensive.
Context Is Important
I used to work in tech support back during the dot com boom and one of my customers got upset with me over the use of the word “icon.” According to him, the word icon had religious implications regardless of the context it was being used in. He insisted that instead of calling them Windows icons, I called them “little picture things.”
To Whom It May Concerngray and white long sleeve shirtPhoto by Markus Winkler on Unsplash
I was in a store once in Moab, UT when a woman started yelling directly at me that she'd never buy a shirt that says Moab on it because in the bible Moab was apparently a terrible, sinful place. I ended up just standing there blinking at her until she finally wandered away because I couldn't figure out why she was even there then. That wasn’t even the most ridiculous part.
For one, I wasn’t even an employee or had anything to do with the store we were in. Literally, no one had asked her if she wanted one, and I wanted nothing to do with the interaction that was occurring.
Eye Can’t Stand The Sight Of That
We have an organization-wide theme every year and all the PCs on our network have the same background and theme which can't be changed. This year's theme was, "Vision is 2020" and the background was a zoomed-in picture of an eye in really awesome colors. Two women on staff wrote letters to complain about the picture.
They claimed that the picture was "heathen" as it drew from "Illuminati" imagery and paid tribute to the "all-seeing eye of Eqyptian deities." They whined and complained to such an extent that the picture was eventually changed to shut them up and let the normal folks get back to our actual work. And that is why we can’t have nice things.
One And The Same
My ex-husband once got offended by a sandwich. I kid you not. He was given a sandwich by our then 13-year-old daughter and because she cut the sandwich in half he went off on a massive tangent about how his sandwiches should never be cut, etc. She was crushed. It still winds me up to no end every time I think about it.
An ex of mine once flew into a shrieking rage because while he was driving, someone swerved or did something surprising and I gasped out loud. Apparently, that meant that I didn't trust him and our entire relationship was in question. The amount of rage for the level of infraction was, well, upsetting, to say the least.
For those suggesting I was actually overreacting and being the annoying one, he was a terrible, aggressive driver, and we lived in Boston. I'm reminded of the time he reversed the car out of a spot by turning the wheel sharply and gunning the engine, smashing the entire side of the car into the concrete pillar next to the parking spot.
That was my fault too for not warning him that he was going to hit the pillar. I also gasped that time, despite being warned that gasping was a sign of distrust in the relationship.
Over His Head
I managed a small, new team that had no procedures or policies, so I set about instituting some. I jokingly told them, "I mean, you never know, I could get hit by a bus tomorrow, and then no one would know how to process these requests.” I then asked for their feedback and for them to write up how they did their tasks.
We would then come back together and decide the best practices moving forward in a future meeting. This little man filed a complaint to the manager for my use of "violent imagery" and said that he felt threatened. It was a whole thing—but it came back to bite him. Ultimately, he got fired. He was a horrible employee with real issues towards having a woman in charge.
Family Mattersthree people sitting in front of table laughing togetherPhoto by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash
In my counseling program, we are currently going through assessments and revising them. One portion of the assessment asks about family members and what the client’s relationship with them is like. One of my classmates got upset and insisted we remove that section because having a family is a sign of privilege and it’s triggering.
Guess What’s For Dinner
At my wedding, we marked the vegetarian items as vegetarian. This made the one vegetarian at my wedding, who happened to be the sister-in-law who hates me, fly into a catatonic rage because we are singling out the vegetarian food as vegetarian and not treating it as normal food. How else are they supposed to know it's vegetarian?
Candy Cane And Abel
I had a pastor that insisted we call candy canes "Jesus sticks" because Christmas is all about Jesus. Well, when I was seven, I accidentally referred to the Holy Jesus Stick as a candy cane in his presence. I swear to you, he rushed over to my dad to tell on me and carry on about how offensive it is to see the world trying to remove Christ from Christmas.
My dad asked him if he was serious and then told him to grow up. Then, to rub it in, my dad took it one hilarious step further. He dressed up as Santa a couple of weeks later, and came into the church yelling "Ho! Ho! Ho! Candy canes for everyone!" and passed the satanic candy canes to all the little children during the service. The pettiness runs deep in our family.
Take A Step Back
My ex and I were looking at houses and brought his dad—let's call him Dave—to see some of them. At one of the houses, apparently, the real estate agent didn't spend enough time agreeing with Dave about how the bottom step was too tall. Later that night, I got an hour-long lecture from Dave about how the agent was a terrible person that was trying to take advantage of us.
I'm single now…and Dave here was definitely a contributing factor.
Fanning The Flames
At my job, we often move around from desk to desk. One guy left his desk with a small fan, and my desk neighbor would point the fan at his desk. One day, a new employee came and sat at the desk with the fan, and rearranged everything to her liking. After she went home that night, my neighbor pointed the fan back at his desk.
When she came in the following day, she saw the fan was pointed away from her chair. She loudly asked the room if someone had been interfering with her workspace. My desk neighbor apologized and took responsibility for it, but reminded her that it was not her fan as it belonged to the former desk occupant. She went ballistic.
My desk neighbor was disrespecting her and her space and creating a hostile environment. She went immediately to the floor supervisor and demanded a new seating assignment. When she packed up her desk she took the fan with her. She eventually got a seat alone in a quiet private space, so that worked out nicely for her.
Not All Men’s Best Friendperson walking beside Golden retriever on the streetPhoto by Andriyko Podilnyk on Unsplash
An old man got deeply offended when my friend and I were walking her dog off-leash…in an off-leash dog park. He was riding his bike, which isn't even allowed, and was screaming at us about how disrespectful we were being. Another time, we got yelled at by a different old man for "not cleaning up after that dog." She had peed on the grass.
Old boomer men get offended constantly by her and her dog just existing near them. She moved away but sends me stories every now and then because it happens all the time. Her dog is a well-behaved golden retriever straight from a family movie from the 90s, and she is a young professional adult who keeps to herself. I don't understand it.
Mind Your Manners
I used to work at a buffet pizza place years ago. One time, after checking out a lady who was probably in her 40s, I said: "Thank you ma’am." She lost her mind and said I was calling her old. I tried to explain that I was born and raised in the Deep South—Louisiana—and that is how we talk there, but she wasn't having it.
She asked for the manager. When he came out, she explained the situation to him, to which he replied by telling her to GTFO and never come back.
Help Not Wanted
I want to start this off by saying that when this situation occurred I was going blind. So I had some vision but required the use of a white-tipped cane. Anyway, I am on campus one day and leaving a building when I spot a man in a wheelchair coming up behind me. He had a squeaky wheel so I noticed the noise and looked back.
This man had a backpack and some stuff in his lap, so when I went through the door I held it open for him. I was just being a nice guy and helping out a random person. That is where I screwed up. He stopped, looked at me, and started yelling that he didn't need my help or my pity, and that I was only holding the door because he is disabled.
I waggled my cane at him and said, "I am disabled as well. I was only trying to be nice and open the door for you like I would for anybody. It’s not because you are disabled. I’m not going to slam the door in your face because you’re disabled either, I’m going to because you’re a jerk,” and I did. I never thought someone would get upset with me opening the door for them.
Ewe Got to Be Kidding?
A customer used to get extremely riled up if we asked, "How are you?" or "Would you like a bag with that?" Really anything with the word "you". The alternative was mind-blowingly ridiculous. Instead, we had to say, "How is yourself today?" or "Would yourself like a bag with that?" Otherwise, she'd get super offended and scream, "I’m not a female sheep!" Referring to "ewe" as opposed to "you".
Out Of Left Field
My dad and stepmom got offended for some reason when I said, "Online school makes my behind hurt from sitting for six hours straight. This is worse than when I was working 70 hours a week." I was pretty confused when a few minutes later my stepmom said, "You should appreciate what your dad does to pay the bills." I never said anything about their jobs.
Bargain Hunterperson using MacBook ProPhoto by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash
I was at my mom's apartment one morning and my mom and little brother were asking me if the laptop on the floor was mine. All I said was, "No, mine's a little bigger." My mom proceeded to lecture me on being rude and all that good stuff. She was all like, " You didn't have to say that. That was mean. You don't have to brag about having a better laptop.”
She continued by saying how some people don't have enough money for a laptop like mine. I just looked at her, then told her that I got my large, touchscreen, 17-inch Dell laptop for under 20 bucks.
Anything Is Better Than Nothing
A cashier once got offended that my child called me by my first name. Actually, it happened a few times when he was growing up but this cashier stands out the most. My son is autistic and was delayed in his speech but he started calling me by my first name instead of mom around the age of 4 or 5. I think it's because he heard everyone else call me by my first name.
I honestly didn't care if he used my first name, a nickname, mom, mommy or whatever, as long as he talked, and that's what I told the cashier.
There’s Always Another Option
My name and contact details went on the cover letter for a newsletter that went to 19,000 tenants. A sight-impaired lady, who I'd met a few weeks before, complained that the copy she was sent did not take her visual impairment into consideration and that I was breaking the law. She had some special requirements, a specific font, and size, no italics, etc.
I offered her the choice of me sending her the newsletter as it is, pics and all, but blown up to A3 size to make it easier, or I could copy the text into her specific requirements, but without the pictures. I could not do both. I specifically told her if she chose option A, I could not guarantee that the text would meet her needs.
She chose the first option, so I managed to get our print guys to do one copy at A3 size. I delivered it by hand the same day she asked for the copy. The very next day, at 9:02 am, she made an official complaint against me, claiming the text in the version I'd posted did not meet her needs and she was unable to read it.
Get It Yourself
I used to work at a bookstore. One of my coworkers was helping a customer who wanted a book from the top shelf of a very high section. The co-worker is 4'11" tall, the customer is maybe 5'2" tall, and the nearest stepstool is God knows where. I'm 5'10" tall and was nearby, so my coworker waved me over for help and pointed out the book.
I plucked it off the shelf and handed it to the customer with a polite and casual "Here you are ma'am" type of smile. No big deal, right? Wrong. The customer exploded. Apparently, it was completely unfair that I was so tall and could reach the book easily, and clearly, I was mocking her. She went to my manager to complain and left quickly after that.
For the final project in my high school art class, we had to do a report on an artist and then make a piece based on their work. I can't remember who I chose, but my project was Minecraft Pixel Art. I spent a long time working on it at home and at school. The teacher and nearly everyone loved my work, except for one student.
She was angry that I was using a computer in class because it insults the artist I am working off of. She tried to delete my world when I went to the bathroom, but a friend of mine stopped her and she got in trouble. Her mom later complained to our principal that I started it, because art is meant to be canvas and paint, not computers.
ETA Is Not OKwoman in black headphones holding black and silver headphonesPhoto by Charanjeet Dhiman on Unsplash
I work in customer service and have dealt with a number of people who got super offended for very little reason. I help with roadside assistance, service calls for equipment repair, product Q&A, placing orders, and minor tech support, all for different brands. One roadside assistance call was from this guy who was on the side of the expressway with a flat tire.
He had a spare tire but no jack, so I dispatched the call and told him help would be there as soon as possible. He asked for the time they'd arrive, which is a common question. I can't provide an exact time, only an estimate, and most of the time when I tell people that, they accept that information, and thank me for the help.
Not this guy. He demanded an exact time as to when help would arrive. Insert story here on how he's an important person with things to do, followed by how we're "not a real company" if we don't give him an exact time of arrival to change his tire. I verbally slapped him out of his story, which I’m allowed to do thanks to my job protocols.
I told him I've done this work for a decade and can't tell him anything like, "They'll be there in 4 minutes and 13 seconds" because it will be wrong. I reiterated that help will be there as soon as possible, then released the call. There’s no sense in me entertaining this offended guy, who's already got help on the way, when I've got other people still waiting to call for help.
Gimme, Gimme Sometimes Gets
I went to Walmart the other day and had to wait in line for a cart because there were none available. As I waited, a line formed behind me, with most notably a 6’5” tall man near the back. Eventually, some carts came out but you have to wait for them to be cleaned before you can get one. Apparently, the tall man didn’t get the memo.
He pushed past myself and a woman to grab the first cart. He got stopped by a worker who politely asked him to hold on a second so he can sanitize the cart. The tall man got in the worker’s face and started cussing him out. He snatched the cart, pushed past us, and started screaming, "You don't know who you're talking to little man," as he walked down an aisle.
The worker handled the situation very well, but he was scared just as much as we were. I never knew a couple of extra seconds for your own benefit could annoy someone so much.
Mind Read The Room Next Time
I told a really cheesy joke at work once. Something along the lines of, "this kid was a pirate for Halloween, and some lady who answered the door said where are your buccaneers, and the kid said under my buckin' hat, lady.” Well, this perpetually angry woman at work told me it was offensive to her, because her mother had deformed ears.
She was legitimately serious, acting like I should have known that about her mom. On top of that, my dumb joke had nothing to do with ear deformities. She also got offended that some older guy that everyone loved called women, "Tootsie" or "Toots" sometimes. It doesn’t end there. She was also offended by the image on the box of Skinny Cow Ice Cream.
Look It Up
Last week at work, one of my co-workers made a slight mistake that affected another area of the department. The girl who found the mistake came to me demanding that I fix it and complained that she always had to fix mistakes from our area and she was sick of it. I listened to her badger on while I fixed the error, until I couldn’t take it anymore.
I sighed and said, rather level-headedly, "Thank you, I'll get to the bottom of it. I appreciate your diligence." She literally screamed at me and went to go get our manager, insisting that I was "mocking her with words she did not understand." I later found out that she thought that diligence was a fancy word for smarty pants.
I used to work at a drive-thru and lost count of the number of people who got super angry at me when I didn't hear what they said. All I would say was, "I'm so sorry, could you repeat that one more time? I didn't quite catch that" and the next thing you know they are blowing up about how "you never understand what I'm saying every time I'm here! I'm never coming here again!"
I don’t know, maybe just repeat it once more so I can punch it in? Why do you have to get so mad?
Too Many Wordsgroup of people walking near body of water and building under blue sky at daytimePhoto by Ilnur Kalimullin on Unsplash
In French, we have a way to address a man—Monsieur—a married woman—Madame—an unmarried woman—Mademoiselle—and we use to have one for an unmarried man—Mondamoiseau—which disappeared from official paperwork ages and ages ago. In the name of gender equality, mademoiselle was also removed a few years ago from official paperwork.
Also in the name of gender equality, some employees were told to not call young women mademoiselle anymore and to go with madame instead. So the trick is that some women will get offended when called madame, because it makes them feel old…and some women will get offended when called mademoiselle, because it is considered inappropriate.
Don’t Be Greedy
I worked in a clothing store that would occasionally send out $10 and $25 coupons to people. For obvious reasons, you can only use them once, so we were told to rip them up and throw them away after scanning them. The anger that would fill the old ladies’ faces when I ripped that coupon in half and threw it in the garbage after scanning it was scary.
Once, a customer angrily demanded that I give her the coupon back so she could use it again, so I scribbled on it with a black sharpie and gave it to her with a “have a nice day.” I really shouldn’t be in customer service.
No Shirt, Sherlock!
I was at the shop with my seven-month-old and he was wearing an adorable shirt that had a rocket ship and the NASA logo on it. We were minding our own business when some middle-aged woman in the shop came up to me out of nowhere and said, “He shouldn’t be wearing that because he’s clearly not an astronaut.” I was dumbfounded.
There’s A Time And A Place
I had a coworker who got mad at me because I asked her not to tickle me. The coworker was very young and immature. This was her first job, her first time in a professional environment, and she really had no clue about professional workplace behavior. I wasn't upset, because she truly thought she was being friendly.
However, I pointed out that we were not children, we were not in a relationship, we were not family, it was very inappropriate to do that at work, and most importantly, I don’t like being tickled! I know she was young, but I couldn’t believe her reaction. She flipped out and said everyone likes being tickled and I was being mean to her. Thankfully, my boss had my back. I should also mention that I’m a woman, too.
Do You Have Any Grey Poupon?
My sister's marriage began its demise over mustard. She was offended that French's Yellow Mustard was in the fridge instead of something organic. She didn't want their infant son growing up with yellow mustard in the house. That argument was the beginning of the end. My poor brother-in-law couldn't even eat a sandwich without getting blasted from her.
We can all agree that, while it's supposed to be fun, navigating the dating scene is hard.
But since the world has never before seen the technological tools it has at its disposal now, never before will we have seen how this technology could impact our relationships.
But it goes much deeper than people sitting in the same room with each other while only engaging with their screens.
Seeming to be getting fed up with the dating scene, Redditor princeflare asked:
"What do you think is the true killer of modern dating?"
No Third Places Left
"A lot of commenters are saying "dating apps" but I think that misses the mark. The true culprit is the loss of community and, as someone else mentioned, the Third Place. We wouldn't need dating apps if people were still able to meet organically as much as we used to."
Fear of Being Approached
"A lot of women nowadays freak out if asked out even organically. A friend and I were at the bar a bit before the pandemic and we were having a good time and started talking with a mixed group near us. Eventually, groups merged and we were all having fun."
"We ended up having a lot of conversations with two of the girls in that group. One went to the bathroom and the other right after she left was all like, 'You should totally ask out my friend,' and all that."
"Fast forward through the night, and eventually, we are playing pool, and that girl and I are kinda in the corner by ourselves, so I asked her for her number."
"She just freaked out, like, 'I gotta get out of here' style freakout."
"We hung out for like two hours, laughed together multiple times, we're were in public place near people she knows, we had a small bit of physical contact initiated by her, her friend thought I should ask her out, I didn't do it within earshot of everyone to not put her on the spot, etc. I very much can't imagine a scenario where I could make someone more comfortable beforehand."
"I'm married now to a great woman but when you try off dating apps and it's looking like the stars aligned and you get that response, it's just like, what the h**l is wrong with people."
"Wow, just when you think the signs couldn’t be any clearer, she pulled a complete 180."
"Glad you ended up finding someone good, though."
What (True Crime Podcasts) Heck?
"Is it crazy to link the explosion to true crime content and it largely being consumed by women to their fear of an organic dating scene in the last 20 years?"
"I’ve heard some crazy stats about women EATING up true crime content which can induce paranoia, I listened to that s**t for a summer and couldn’t look behind myself at night as a 6’2 male, lol (laughing out loud). Terrible and anxiety-causing stuff."
"Dude, not at all crazy to link it all together. I actually had to have a small intervention with my ex-girlfriend a couple years ago because all she listened to was podcasts about murder... etc. and she was becoming so insecure and anxious, and it absolutely was changing her personality and sense of safety."
"We even had a similar talk about following nothing but Instagram models… things like that will completely warp your view of the world."
"Not crazy at all. Studies have shown that watching crime dramas, the news, and true crime type stuff can all lead to unrealistic perceptions on how dangerous the world actually is."
Too Many Options
"The true killer of modern dating is the paradox of choice, where endless options often lead to indecision and commitment issues."
"It's amusingly called a frictionless market. There's no cost in continuing to look for the 'perfect' partner, so people skip over the good matches they could build a happy life with."
"I wanted to add: There seems to be some confusion about what the costs are, and what the side-effects of this scenario are. In a non-frictionless market, there's a cost in time and effort to continue looking."
"For example, if you're looking for a perfect apple, and you can't find it in your store, you drive to store after store. That costs time, gas, etc., costs that you don't have in online dating, because to continue looking is just another swipe on the dating app. So there's no deterrent to continue looking because to continue looking is 'free.'"
"The side-effects are around failure to have successful relationships, emotional costs due to frustrated expectations and relationships."
Lack of Shared Experiences
"Call me old-fashioned, but it’s the complete lack of mystique, in my opinion. Part of the fun of dating pre-internet was learning about a person and getting to know them through conversation and shared experience."
"We are more connected than ever before but there is a loneliness epidemic happening. It all seems so cheap and seedy nowadays."
"I'd add getting to know them by actually talking to them instead of sleuthing around to find stuff about their life."
"Totally agreed. Shared experiences are such a huge factor, and nobody wants to give anyone time anymore."
Level Up: Dating Gamification
"The gamification of swiping left or right on hundreds of profiles based off of two-second first impressions, typing one-word messages, and then ghosting them or unmatching because you’re bored. Not treating them like actual humans. There’s always a new profile to move onto."
"I say this as someone who literally met their current spouse on Tinder, but online dating apps are (for the most part) very demoralizing. I couldn’t wait to get off the app and meet up in person to have a real human connection."
"This really rings true to me. I was already with my husband when dating apps took off. I vividly remember watching some friends check their apps and just saying, 'Nope, nope, ew, doesn’t make enough money, too short, nope.' It was all based on their immediate impression of the photo and bio."
"Then they’d start messaging someone and obsessing over exactly what to say, how quickly to reply, what did the other person mean by that. There was so much analysis and decision-making before they ever met someone in person."
"I know several couples who met online and have great relationships, so it can work for some people, but I know many more who have struggled with online dating."
"I think this is definitely it. My husband and I met on Tinder, but he doesn't even have social media, and I only use it to post big things like our wedding and literally nothing else. So not avidly. Our first date was like five days after we matched and moving off the app to meeting in person definitely changes the dynamic and trust and should be done as soon as possible."
"Social media is a killer of interpersonal connections and has created a shallow society."
Getting Paid to Date... or... Paying... to Date... Wait, What?
"If we consider that modern dating is largely just online dating at this point."
"Then the clearcut killer of modern dating to me is monetization. A decade ago Tinder was AWESOME. It was very easy to match with people, land dates, and participate in hook-up culture if you wanted to. OKCupid was fun and based on personality, lifestyle, and chemistry. Bumble was a decent alternative to Tinder."
"Then they all I think got bought out by one company and all started to care more about profit than purpose."
"Bumble, you get like ten likes a day max. Sometimes five. It’s inconsistent."
"Tinder you have a ton of bots and ads and spam accounts. You have to pay money to access the same features that you got for free before."
"OkCupid went away with their great formula and went for a swipe feature instead and now it sucks."
"Hinge could be good but it locks away the most essential, basic filters for finding suitable dates behind a paywall."
"Work-life balance. People are too tired or too broke to go out and do things. Any spare time and you are just too tired to want to do anything. This is how dating apps took off and led to objectification and judging people in five seconds."
"Yeah. It’s so exhausting to do anything after work. Friday is just recovering Saturday is the day to do everything and Sunday is for preparation for the week. How can you get the time to get to know new people?"
"Oh gosh, I thought I was alone in this! The couple of times I have started seeing someone I end up completely overwhelmed because I never get a day to just do nothing. I’m too tired during the week, so would have to cram seeing family, and friends, and going on a date on a weekend. I feel much more relaxed single."
"I wish I could’ve met someone in school where it seems like it was much easier to see them during the week."
The Search for Perfection
"The fact that, thanks to a steady diet of social media and brain-dead entertainment, everybody seems to think that they deserve a partner that checks all the items in their cartoonishly unrealistic list of requisites while at the same time they, at their best, would have basically f**k all to offer their fantastical ideal partner in return. And odds are they're not at their best anyway, so they have even less than f**k all to offer."
"And to top it off, everybody seems to think that this imaginary ideal partner should put in all the work and effort in the relationship, including pursuing them before the relationship even starts, while they sit back and do, well, f**k all."
"'You’re not perfect, sport, and let me save you the suspense, this girl you met isn’t, either. The question is, whether or not you’re perfect for each other...' I think that quote is what people miss."
The Need to Share
"Social media and dating apps. How on earth is not broadcasting your life a red flag? To me, that is a neon green flag."
"The last place I would look for love is on an app. Maybe I am old-fashioned... the instant filtering is just plain weird."
Increased Opportunities to Cheat
"I've been cheated on in every relationship I’ve ever been in because of Instagram and Snapchat, obviously not 'because,' but they make cheating a lot easier and seemingly less 'painful,' which it’s not."
"I’m sick and tired of this s**t, man. I just want a loyal woman in my life, I’m tired of being f**king hurt. All my friends have been cheated on at least once, some physically and most on social media. Mine all of the above. So tired of it, for real, man."
"Where the f**k did true, loyal, adorable love go?"
Knowing Your Worth
"I would say egos, and people that think they have a high perceived value to the point they feel like others should bend over backwards to be in their presence."
"I've been saying this for years. The phrase 'know your worth' is ingrained into everybody nowadays, but nobody is willing to have a frank conversation with themselves about what they are worth."
Too Many Main Characters for One Story
"Main Character Syndrome."
"I came here to say this, you know, one NPC (Non-Player Character) to another."
One Word: Escapism
"I mean, life in general. But getting more specific, I'd say escapism. Social media, gaming, drugs and alcohol. It's all a way to escape reality and while it feels good in the moment, it takes you away from the process of growing as a person and growing with another person."
"It causes resentment, contempt, f**ks with insecurities, and has shifted the point of partnership from PARTNERSHIP to access. We're all traumatized and we're all running from something."
We Just Need a Nap
"We're tired, boss. Just plain worn out, burnt out, run down tired. Work-life balance is dead, society is mentally draining, and literally everything worth doing costs money. When the h**l are you supposed to meet that person when you get home from work and immediately go to bed so you can be up at 4:30 A.M. to do it again tomorrow?"
"This is everything, buddy. I feel this and I don't see my self getting married and for sure not having kids. I don't want to introduce a new life into a decaying world that refuses to fix its older generations' mistakes. This whole attitude of 'I will be dead before it effects me' f**king sucks."
It's totally understandable that each generation, with its own priorities and relationship with technology, will see a shift in how their social lives look.
All of that being said, it's still surprising how extensive of a reach technology and social media now have in our dating lives, going from people not really knowing how someone looks until seeing their in-person... to hardly ever have the opportunity to see them in-person anyway.
It's not uncommon for certain products to end up being used for purposes different than their initial intention.
Cotton swabs, or Q-tips, are the prime example, as nearly all who buy them use them to clean earwax from their ears despite the box expressly warning customers not to.
Then there are the products made for specific customers but whose clientele proves to be quite different from their initial target market.
Specifically, things or experiences intended for children but primarily enjoyed by adults, ruining any excitement the young folk may have had about them.
Redditor opposeThem was curious to hear about all the things magic grown-ups stole away from children, leading them to ask:
"What was meant for kids but adult consumers hijacked it and ruined it?"
Who Doesn't Need Something Soft And Cuddly Every Now And Then...
"People trying to resell these literal stuffies 3x the price online."- sighcommagroan
Seems Like They Were Looking For The Wrong Kind Of Bears...
"Build A Bear."
"As a former employee I don't care if you came in and bought some stuff animals."
"Hell, there's some cool ones like Pokémon."
"HOWEVER, just cuz I worked there doesn't mean I have a whole collection myself and watch every show and movie that's partnered with the company."
"Yes I was an adult man working at a stuffed animal store."
"Yes I bought a couple Pokémon for myself."
"'No I don't wanna hear another grown man passionately talk to me about My Little Pony and PLEASE I DON'T WANT TO SEE A CUTIE MARK TATTOO YOU HAVE ON YOUR A** CHEEK EVEN IF THERE'S NO KIDS IN THE STORE CURRENTLY."- That_Guy_Pen
Fun Can't Be Forced
"After school hobbies!"
"Around the age of 47, I decided to pick up guitar again."
"So I went to a local school and enrolled as an adult."
"I would see parents harassing their kids and berating them for not being better."
"I think the majority of them have lost the idea that extracurricular activities are too help your child out of their shell and also to have fun."
"Not to make them a professional of any sort or the best of the best of the best."- BisquickNinja
I Mean, They Are Pretty Cute
"I remain baffled as to how and why minions, of all things, became the thing of choice for unfunny boomer memes."- moonbunnychan
Collect Them All... To Sell Them Later...
"Every card hobby."
"It’s literally just about prices now."- lol022
"Scalpers were so down horrendous they were raiding McDonald's during the pandemic."- Sol-Blackguyash ketchum pokemon GIFGiphy
"When I was a kid I felt so bad for that rabbit."
"I still don’t understand the idea behind that marketing campaign."
"Was it- being greedy and mean is hilarious."
"Buy our cereal?
"Just give the bunny some cereal you sadistic little sh*ts."
"They ran an ad for a little while that was a campaign that allowed you to vote on whether or not the rabbit would get some Trix."
"I think you had to mail in a box top with your vote or something."
"I voted 'share' with all of my sensitive little heart."
“'Greed' won by a landslide."
"That’s when I first became disillusioned with voting and people in general."- Iamtevya
You Can Keep The House, But You Can't Take My Babies...
"Beanie Baby collectors."- bigredthesnorer
" [A] photo of a divorcing couple dividing their beanie baby collection in court always makes me laugh."
"So ridiculous that people thought they were like stocks."- Delores_HerbigBeanie Babies GIF by HBO MaxGiphy
"Parents who film their kid’s lives for likes and subs are sh*tty."- da_predditor
The Edward Vs. Jacob Fued Will Never End...
"I'm an adult that reads them."
"But the characters are TEENAGERS."
"People get upset that teenagers act like teenagers, in books targeted at... you guessed it, teenagers."- PumpkinPieIsGreat
So Much For Love Of The Game...
"When I was a kid 30 years ago, you’d have a practice or 2 a week plus a game on Saturday."
"Then if you loved sports, you’d get together with buddies in your ample free time and mess around playing super fun pick up games."
"Now, many kids are having full weekend tournaments like every weekend."
"And tons of practices.'
"They rarely have the free time to just play with their friends for the fun of it."
'Sure they are better athletes than we were, but are they better off?"- omgphilgalfondhomer simpson pitcher GIFGiphy
Can You Say "Re-Sale?"...
"Pretty much any kids' toy."
"The scalpers are working harder than ever to f*ck it up."
"Pokémon/whatever is popular cards?"
"Check as f*ck."
"Fuzzy egg furby like critters?"
"If scalpers can leech money out of people with it, they'll do it."- chris14020
Car Salespeople Can Be Ruthless...
"Hot wheels."- Snow-Dog2121
"Worst memory I have of comic con."
"An exhibitor gave a kid what must’ve been an exclusive at their booth."
"Grown men rushing and crowding the kid pressuring him to sell his toy."
"His parents moved him away promptly but I imagine he was shaken up by the experience."
"Went from a cool moment of unexpectedly getting a toy to grown weirdos getting in his face."- Dwike2
Where To Even Begin?
"Harry Potter vibrating broomstick."- PursuitTravel
"I have one found at Goodwill about 11 years ago."
"I'm a big HP fan, and I was excited to buy it."
'I realized it turned on, and I was hoping for cool sound effects, I was disappointed it only vibrated."
"I remember looking it up online just to check out info on it and found out why it was discontinued shortly after its release, thought never occurred to me until then."- NecranissaHarry Potter Halloween GIFGiphy
One has to wonder how the manufacturers or marketing departments feel about these alternative uses?
Sadly, one can only guess that as long as they are turning a profit, they couldn't care less...