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People Explain What Is More Psychologically Damaging Than People Seem To Realize​

People Explain What Is More Psychologically Damaging Than People Seem To Realize​
Kristina Tripkovic/Unsplash

The things that cause us psychological damage aren't always the things people expect, and some events can be way more traumatic than you might think. This is especially true of things that happen to us as children.

Reddit user Zutroy2117 asked the folks on AskReddit:

"What's a lot more psychologically-damaging than people seem to think it is?"


I'm gonna go with poverty. It's insanely expensive and stressful to be poor and the sort of thinking that allows you to survive when you're poor kind of messes you up once you aren't. I know people who WILL NOT fill their car to the top even though they could absolutely afford to. The logic is when you're struggling, you only put enough in to get around for the week or so because you'll be kicking yourself if you get to the day before pay and have no money and no food but half a tank of fuel.


This. Poverty also doesn't end when you simply have more money. It sticks with you when you hang out with people that grew up well-off, who never had to worry, making you feel like a muggle-born. It drives you to compare prices at the restaurant even if somebody else treats you to dinner. It makes you fear to lose your job or your appartment because you know your status hangs by a thread and you can fall down again.


Bad Parenting

Bad parents


Even if they “tried their best” to be good parents. Unintentionally being a bad parent can be just as bad. See “emotional neglect.”


I totally agree with you. My grandpa visited me recently and we talked about my mom. He thought she was a good mother until I told him how she always told me that I'm not good enough because of my weight. Also everything I did was wrong in her eyes so everytime I tried to stand up for myself she said "I gave you life, I can also take it from you." I always thought every parent says something like that to their child. My Grandpa told me that it's not and now I don't want to know what else I thought was "normal" when it clearly isn't.


We Need To Communicate

When parents use the silent treatment. It makes a child feel so helpless because it knows instinctively that its life depends on its parent‘s care. So if you stop any interaction with your child, it will feel life threatening to it, causing the child to loose its personality just to behave like the parents want it to. Which later will turn in an overly adjusted adult with mental problems.


Silent withdrawal really messes your mind because you spend all your energy trying to get the person to engage or figure out what you did wrong.


It’s not just damaging when parents do it to children.

It’s also an incredibly damaging thing to do to a partner or friend. It elicits the same reaction you’d get from a child, a feeling of helplessness, lack of care, confusion, and deep fear. It can make even a confident adult feel worthless, unloved, unwanted, etc.

It’s not something anybody should do to anyone else, especially someone they care about.


Unrealistic Expectations

When a parent makes their child terrified of failure. Yes, it’s good to instill that one always tries their best— but I was told basically from kindergarten that if I ever got a bad grade on literally ANYTHING EVER at ANY point in my academic career, I would only be able to work in fast food. If I ever brought home anything less than a “B+” my mom would make sure to spend the next week telling me I was gonna spend my life “flipping burgers”. It really did a number on me and left me without coping skills for many years— so any time I failed in life in any way (not just academically) I would be SUPER hard on myself for extended periods which led to extremely negative self talk and eventual self harm. Hate ya, mom.


The first time I came home with a B on my report card, my grandparents had to kick out my parents because my mom would NOT stop laying into me. I was in third grade, I think? I had always had straight As and my mom refused to let me do any less. That meant crying in front of either parent when I didn't understand a math question and they'd berate me saying that I'm better than this and know better.

I absolutely detest how I grew up. I went from loving school to finding it something dangerous and something I hated. Any form of effort meant I wasn't as good as I was supposed to be and I'd shut down. When you know you're berated for anything below perfection, knowing you can't achieve that perfection is the fastest way to tanking your grades. Took me years to get out of that mentality.


Bullies Suck


Whilst some people see beginning to pull through with the awareness of the issue, there are still many who don't think it can cause much harm.


Bullying f**ked me up more than anything else in my childhood - learning in your formative years that you can't trust your peers, people want to hurt you, and that anyone who could stop it either doesn't care or doesn't believe you... well, that severely f**ks up your social development.

I ended up being a late bloomer and getting it figured out but it still makes me sad when I think about how scared and alone I was as a child. Nowhere was safe and I was so vulnerable.

To make it worse bullying doesn't stop in childhood. There are grown *ss people who will bully the people around them and it's always treated like a silly issue when the victims speak out.

I wish we started treating bullying as socially unacceptable as we currently treat speaking out against it.


Sibling bullying too. When I was around 10 I told a teacher my sister was bullying me, she rang home and both my mum and sister were completely disbelieving that I’d think I was being bullied. And yeah, I mean she was only hitting me, calling me names, breaking my stuff, threatening me, throwing rocks at me, constantly making me cry, ganging up on me with her friends, calling me insults about my face / race / personality every day…


And friend bullying, I'm 26 and only just realised that all my "friends" in high school weren't just teasing me but were full on bullying me, which also explains the panic attacks and the constant feeling that people hate me unless I'm useful.


All In My Head

A person's own thoughts


I can't believe this isn't upvoted more than it is. This reminds me of a phrase by Henry Ford that says "Whether you think you can or you can't, you're right." A person's own thoughts are often the downfall because the lack of self-belief seeps into the actions taken by the person causing negative or unwanted actions to be taken.


Life's End

End-of-life care and seeing someone die. Anyone who's looked after a loved one in their last days will tell you it's nothing like you see in media. My grandmother died of cancer in June 2020 and I was able to act as one of her primary caretakers during her last three months while I was home from school, doing my degree online.

Sickness took away her strength and her autonomy. The grandma I decorated a Christmas tree with shortly after her diagnosis could barely walk three months later. Even hospice care at home is only so comfortable. She had bedsores that put her through horrible pain and spent her last months sitting in the same armchair for most of the day. Myself, my mother and her brothers rotated staying with her constantly because she needed two people's help to use her bedside commode. She often needed an oxygen machine, and it always scared the daylights out of me when it was all she could do to even choke out the word 'oxygen' or point to the machine because she couldn't breathe.

And of course, as visceral as life in hospice is, it doesn't prepare you for finding your loved one dead. Dead bodies don't just look like they're asleep. Blood pools, creating bruise-like spots and waxy skin in other places. Muscles twitch and relax and bowels loosen. Side note: mortuary makeup artists do not get the credit they deserve for putting life back on your loved one's face for their funerals.

But yeah. Definitely hard to do hospice care for someone you love. I have a lot of respect for the nurses who do it for a living, especially the ones who helped us with my grandmother at a critical stage in the pandemic.



Cheating. Specifically multi-year lying and gaslighting, leading the person to question their own self-worth and value.

Just be honest and not a sh*t human. If you have fear of the reaction to your honesty, seek help and support from authorities and friends.

No one deserves to be cheated on. Doing so is a selfish, intentional action to harm someo ne


Relatable... I became a completely different person after a relationship with an emotionally abusive person.

I get incredibly anxious in any form of new relationship now (both romantic and other) and it’s almost a daily struggle to be ‘normal’ or confident in any decisions I make. I don’t trust my gut on anything and think constantly in the mindset of worst case scenarios/how to plan for them. It’s really f**ked me up (and this is with ongoing therapy)


Back In My Day

Parents or just any elder authority figure saying “I had it worse than you”. It’s a cognitive bias in the first place, they belittle the less experienced person’s feelings because they are using their current mindset/understanding to look at the less experienced person’s problem. Of course a child’s math test would look easier to you than your own university level math tests. Using this evaluation of ease, they then claim that it’s easier now than before.

It invalidates the difficult feelings/emotions/thoughts/experiences anyone can face. What’s worse, it’s often so that the elder authority figure can feel better about themselves whilst also mistakenly believing that it would encourage the target to work harder or feel better.


Don't Talk About My Body

Any comment or unwanted remark about physical appearance or personality. Sh*t hurts.


Jokes Aren't Always Funny

Jokes, jokes can have such an impact on people, positive and negative, i talk from experience, but not as the receiver, becuase i actually told jokes to people, that mightve made them feel bad, and i am very sorry about that.

Please think before you talk


Good on you for being willing to admit that you were wrong


The things that cause psychological trauma aren't always the kinds of things you might expect. If someone tells you something was traumatic, believe them.

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People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'

Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.

Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.

For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.

I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.

My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.

Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

"Give an example; how weird are you really?"

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."

– Practical_Eye_3600

"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."

– bikergirlr7

"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."

– KingBooRadley


"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."

– AquamarineCheetah

"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."

"Makes me think my "memory is full.""

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."

– OhhGoood

"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."

– Frostygrunt


"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."

– RandomSharinganUser

"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."

– Kolkeia

If Only

"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."

– drummerskillit

"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."

– Isitjustmedownhere

"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."

"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."

"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."

"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."

– We-R-Doomed

"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

"I can hear the television while it's on mute."

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."

"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."

– LesPaltaX

"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."

– MoonlightKayla

I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!

Close up face of a woman in bed, staring into the camera
Photo by Jen Theodore

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?

But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.

It would be so great to be sure there is something else.

But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.

Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:

"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."



"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."

"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."

"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."


Take Me Back

"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."

"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."



"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."

"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”



"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"


"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"


The Fog

"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."

"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."


Through the Walls

"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.

The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.

Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.

Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:

"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."

– r7ndom

"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."

– dee-fondy

"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"

"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”

"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."

– KatMagic1977

"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


"I can buy clothes in any store I want."

– WaySavvyD

"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"

– LiZZygsu

"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"

"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."

– Princess-Pancake-97

"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."

– snic2030

"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."

"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."

– dma1965

People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.

But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.

That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.