Bittersweet moments are usually wonderfully pleasant but yet wrapped in a blanket of sadness, longing or even regret. These experiences are uniquely human and often intertwined in nostalgic memories.
Human emotion is complex. The duality of bittersweet is what makes life interesting.
The comments from BlaasianCowboyPanda's post on Ask Reddit are filled with tearful moments from people's memories. Often, they involve loss, love, or regret.
Redditor BlaasianCowboyPanda asked:
"People of Reddit, what is the most bittersweet situation you've experienced?"
Better grab your tissues before reading any further!
Last moments in a hospital.
"About ten years ago just before she died of lung cancer, my mom called me by my childhood nickname, told me she loved me and then fell asleep. That was the last thing she ever said to me. I was 35 when she died and she hadn't called me that nickname in maybe 30 years. I still tear up thinking about it."
"Sitting in the hospital room, mom was about ready to pass away from cancer, everything was shutting down internally. The date was my parents' 40th wedding anniversary. The last thing dad said to her was 'Thank you for 40 wonderful years.'"
"Oh man. I'm always a sucker for the long love."
"Amidst a loooong illness in hospice and dementia, that meant he recognized no one, my Grampie still lit up every day when my Grammie showed up. He would turn to whoever else was in the room and say 'ah, I'm just the luckiest fella in the world to have the most beautiful woman in the world to love. I love you, Dolly.'"
"She got to be there when he passed away and she died a few months later. I think she was just waiting for him to go first."
Watching someone in pain pass.
"Holding my grandfather's hand as he passed away. It was incredibly sad to see him go, but also relieving to see that it was peaceful and that he had been released."
"The only thing I can say is that being there with him at the end is a blessing. When my grandpa was dying in hospice care, nearly all of the immediate family (his wife obviously, his kids, and us, his grandkids) flew out to Tucson immediately. We spent days there, being with him (even though he was completely out of it), talking, reliving memories of him, and sharing stories that not all of us knew."
"Then when we were getting ready to head back to the hospice the next morning from one of the family members who went back earlier that morning, we got a call that he was doing worse, and that we should get back there ASAP. We all missed his passing, and his wife, my grandma, just completely broke down, saying that she gave him so many years, and he couldn't give her 20 minutes to get there to be with him at the end...god, that was so hard to hear."
"The only good thing about that day was that he was no longer in pain. But holy sh*t, it crushed all of us. We adored that man."
Moving on, permanently.
"Breaking up with my then girlfriend because her dream of moving abroad permanently was coming true. I was happy for her but sad to see her leave."
"You are not alone my friend."
This is a longer story, but we promise it's worth it.
"I always looked back so longingly on my first love. It was the summer we both turned 18 and it was my first time falling in love and everything seemed magic. She was a lifeguard and I still remember her long legs splayed over the lifeguard chair, her long blonde hair, her tan skin, her movie star sunglasses. On that lifeguard stand up high she was a shrine to everything summer. And I loved summer. I had a manual labor job putting in swimming pools, damn that was so hot down there laying plaster with that Kansas City humidity."
"We fell in love that summer and did everything together, every waking hour we could we spent together. In the day we would go down to the creek together and wade in the water and swim and lay on the shore, she always wanted to ride on my back across the creek to get to the other side, our side, where no one ever went but us. Sometimes we would climb on those oversized hay bales by my house and stare up into that cloudless summer sky and talk about what the future would be and going off to college and running track and the Olympics and how we would always love each other."
"My favorite days though, God damnit I loved these days so much was when it rained. We both got off work when it rained so I would get an early call from my boss canceling my work and I would just lay there and smile and look at the ceiling and wait for my phone to ring, it was always her telling me to come over and we could spend the day together. Movies or the mall sometimes but usually we would climb over the gate to the swimming beach and go swim in the lake and feel the warm rain and dive under the water and come up over the dock. Best times of my life."
"I've always looked back on them so longingly. I've been in love since and been married and divorced and dating but it seems my thoughts always came back to her. Even though we live in the same city it was 15 years since I had seen her. Back when I got married to someone else I had an outdoor wedding and even from the front I could hear her sobbing when I said the vows that I wanted to grow old with my wife, that was from a movie my first love and I used to watch together sometimes when it rained. She left right after the wedding and I hadn't seen her again for 15 years. I longed to see her, I even contacted her one time and suggested meeting up but she said she was happily married and would never meet up with me, even to just talk and reminisce. I longed to see her again just one more time."
"Well it happened, I saw her again for the first time in 15 years. We were both at a U2 concert and we hugged and laughed and even danced when they played With or Without You. That night we all had a great time and we walked the women all the way to their car before going to ours. I realized when I saw her Honda minivan and sippy cups from her kids and saw her face that had gotten older that I didn't long for her. Don't get me wrong, she was still beautiful, incredibly beautiful. But she wasn't the girl on top of the lifeguard stand anymore. She had gone on with her life and had kids and drove a sensible minivan and wore sensible mom shoes."
"And then I realized I didn't long for her at all. What I had a longing for was me. When I was 18 and athletic and handsome, with my whole life ahead of me, that was what I longed for more than anything. A life before mortgages and bills and small backyards in the suburbs with fences, I longed for that part of me that was still back there with her at the creek. What it was like to fall in love and swim under the dock in the rain and laugh and hear the words I love you for the first time. I didn't miss her at all. I missed me. It was the most bittersweet realization of my life."
People Share Their Best 'Whoa, It Worked' Moments | George Takei’s Oh Myyy
Watching them grow up.
"Watching my babies grow. Obviously I want them to grow well but if I could just pause time for a bit."
"I thought this same thing this weekend. In Kansas City we have an amusement park and a water park that have combined into one now so its Oceans of Fun and Worlds of Fun. Its such an awesome day! You can ride a roller coaster and then go jump in the wave pool and go back and forth. My kids are getting older now and they don't need me as much, in fact there was an hour or so where I was sitting there all by myself."
"Don't get me wrong, I don't mind it, I read a book and even had a nap. But its bittersweet because they don't need you as much anymore. I tell them how I feel though. I tell them I love being with them. I get just as excited as they do to go to the waterpark. At the end of the day we went to the old time diner place in the park and had French fries and milkshakes and in the booth when we were all drinking milkshakes I told them, ah, this is one of the good parts of life!"
A tender moment with a mother-in-law.
"My fiancé's funeral. It was literally the first time I got to meet his mom. And she was such a sweet lady. When I tried to give her back my ring because it had belonged to her mother. She refused to take it, she told me 'My son chose you to give it to. And it would be rude of me to take back his choice.' She probably still has no idea how much it meant to me."
"I literally have no pictures or anything of him. But I still have my memories and my ring I keep in my jewelry box."
One final childhood moment.
"Recently had one last sleepover with my childhood friend before he passed from leukemia. It was just like being kids again."
"He couldn't do much at the point he'd reached, but we listened to music, watched Luca (which he hadn't yet seen), and just talked about life. And of course we stayed up way past bedtime haha."
It can be difficult to parse out feelings of loss, love, and nostalgia. There's longing wrapping up a lot of these sentiments. Longing for more time, whether it be with a loved one who's passing, a child growing up too quickly, or a lover that needed to move on.
What really ties it all together is love. Hold onto those moments tightly but know that you must let go.
No country is a perfect place to live.
*The following article contains discussion of suicide/self-harm and sexual assault.
Why does your country suck?
Just because a country is beautiful to look at, doesn't mean it doesn't have its problems under the surface.
Pretty To Look At, Tough To Live In
"Today I learned it has way more expensive gas than neighboring countries and even more expensive gas than Austria. On the other hand minimum salary is 560 euro, while minimum salary in Austria is 1500 euro."
"My country is Croatia. And its economy rly sucks. All the prices (renting, food, etc) are the same like other EU countries but people just have way smaller salaries."
"Because of that many young people emigrated to Ireland and other countries, and the population is falling hard, and getting older and older."
"On the other hand it is a country full of sea, sun, islands, nature and beauty. Definitely nice to live in if you have a decent salary."
"Argentina — nobody knows why it doesn't".
"Argentina. Terrible governance, corruption, never-ending economic crises, poverty and insecurity. We have meat, cereals, fish, oil, minerals, beautiful and diverse landscapes. We were once the richest country in the world (1895). But now the situation is constantly worsening."
"Nobel winning economist Simon Kuznets stated that there are four sorts of countries: "developed countries, underdeveloped countries, Japan — nobody knows why it grows — and Argentina — nobody knows why it doesn't".
Unable To Agree In Bosnia
"There are 3 presidents so nothing will ever get solved"
"There are 3 presidents, 1 of each ethnicity that makes up the country, most of which hate each other. Impossible to come to terms with one another, imagine if the US had 2 presidents that were opposite political parties, they would never agree with each other enough to accomplish anything."
The worse thing about some of these places is how they treat their own citizens.
Or, how they don't treat their citizens.
Trouble On The Island
"New Zealand. We have the highest teen suicide rates sadly. I wish we could do something to change this. I know people are trying but its really not going anywhere. Of course, people with money and power don't do much either."
"In my opinion. It's probably because of our living cost as well as house prices. Cost of everything is increasing so fast and our wage increase is nothing compare to it. Your life savings is nothing compare to the people who already have 2 investment properties, they are going to out bid you straight away. If you want a property in NZ you have to buy one in the rural areas. Thinking about the future is so dam depressing."
A Slow Erosion
"Offshore processing of asylum seekers. The slow erosion of a great healthcare and educational system due to years of conservative governments."
Too Drunk To Work
"We got drunk president that is in hospital in critical condition rn and his spokesman is saying hes completely ok which hes not. Also our soon to be ex prime minister is pretty much a mob. He kidnapped his own son and send him to Krym bcs he could testify in tax and dotation fraud. (Czechia btw.)"
These are just unforgivable.
"mass shootings and sh-t healthcare"
"Ooh ooh I know the answer to this question of which country this is. Pick me."
"The healthcare is fantastic."
"Its the price that will getcha"
An Imperfect System For Criminals
"Our law system."
"In our country, when a crime is commited, u get a sentence, and then u can get some of the sentence removed."
"For an example, "u were under 18 when it happened? 10% off!" "U have a bad situation at home? Very well then, only one year prison instead of three".
"There was an instance where a serial assaulter was given 840 000SEK (around 105 000 dollars) because he was detained, awaiting trial, for the same amount of time as the sentence that he was given, which was around two years. This man assaulted multiple girls and walked out of court a near-millionaire."
"Swede here and i instantly understood what you meant"
The Pandemic Hits Everyone, Everywhere
"Our healthcare is free yet I am terrified to go to the emergency because I will probably be dismissed, rushed, or have to wait 12+ hours in a chair..."
"...First, I absolutely don't want to make a point that free healthcare is bad. I actually should have emphasized the issue is corruption and mismanagement of public funds. I'm in Quebec and have myself worked a long time in the system. It's badly managed from the top down, but don't get me wrong, private is bad, really bad. I worked at a clinic that has public and private services and the social inequalities are insane."
"About other provinces, sorry for the Maritimes, it sounds rough. I've heard Ontario isn't as bad as here. Would be interesting to see the best healthcare in Canada is where"
"Finally, I also heard it is bad like this everywhere else right now and I agree. But you can't even imagine how bad it was pre pandemic already. It is a long complexe issue though and the solution is absolutely NOT to privatize. If anything, over here we have a double system and guess what the public one is turning to sh-t while all the good doctors are turning to private."
"This pandemic has been rough for everyone. Hold strong!!"
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
I eat just about anything, but can't say I'm a fan of okra. Might it have to do with the way it is typically prepared, at least in my experience? It's slimy. It shouldn't be. It would probably taste better fried. But I have friends from the South who swear it is heaven on a plate.
But there's more than food that's disgusting. Like... why do people idolize Joe Exotic, the Tiger King? He's a sexual predator and a criminal. I know we all needed something to watch during lockdown, but damn. Don't tattoo his face on your body!
People shared their opinions after Redditor blackismyfavcolorlol asked the online community,
"What's that one disgusting thing that everybody except you seems to like?"
"It sounds so gross..."
"Deep-fried butter and deep-fried mayonnaise. It sounds so gross but everyone seems to eat it at state fairs or amusement parks."
Yeah... I'll pass.
I love butter. I love mayo. Do they need to be fried, though?
"You know the type..."
"Those social media videos of food being made with so much heavy and greasy s***! You know, the type where it's a whole burger, cooked into a quesadilla with a pound of cheese, then fried and covered in three different sauces."
So unnecessary. And they ultimately become a waste of food because who would actually eat that?
"People who slam..."
"People who slam their friend's faces into birthday cakes. Just stop."
I would be so pissed if I spent so much money on hair and makeup only to have it ruined.
"You know what..."
"You know what I think is sick and weird? Why do some people take pictures of their dead/dying family members? Like "at the hospital with my aunt," and it's pictures of someone's aunt on breathing tubes unconscious. It makes no sense to me why you would take pictures and put them on social media."
"Pictures with babies. Or parents creating Facebook profiles in the name of their children, and those children are like... 3 years old, or less."
"Well, I know I can't be the only one that finds them disgusting, but long fake nails. Unless you have a serious case of hand-washing OCD, there is no way that can be hygienic."
How do these people wipe after going to the bathroom?!
"Truffles. The smell makes my stomach turn. I feel like there has to be some kind of bizarre conspiracy or truffle gatherer lobby or something for them to be so expensive."
"He's a predator..."
The guy is a sociopath who manipulated two young straight men into a sexual relationship, which ended in one of them committing suicide. Then he had the audacity to give the most tasteless eulogy in front of the guy's family.
He's a predator and I'm shocked that more non-straight and non-monogamous people aren't speaking up against him being released and getting more screen time."
There are people out there who have gotten tattoos of him. Why would you want a tattoo of a sexual predator on your body?!
"You look like a clown."
"Lip injections. You look like a clown. I don't get it."
"I have so many friends..."
"Whiskey. I have so many friends who love it, but the moment it touches my tongue I gag immediately, regardless of how expensive it is."
Do you hear that sound?
That's me getting ready to hurl.
Have some suggestions of your own? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!
Want to "know" more?
Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.
Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
How do you tell if someone has a crush on you?
It's not always so easy, and many of us will fumble our way through it. Perhaps our only experience with navigating crushes comes from John Hughes movies (which I don't recommend following).
Oh, and while this isn't a Hughes movie, I would not recommend doing to one's crushes what the nerds do in the terrible Revenge of the Nerds.
Looking for advice? Look no further. You can thank Redditor chaitea_lexax who asked the online community,
"What is a dead giveaway that someone has a crush on you?"
"When they tell you..."
"When they tell you at your 10-year high school reunion after they've married and had several children and it doesn't matter anymore."
This is oddly specific.
Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion this is not.
"When they try to be mean..."
"When they try to be mean to you, you can tell. If they weren't interested, they wouldn't be trying to tease you, they would just ignore you."
Yeah, but I wish people didn't think that was okay. Mind games aren't cool.
"She stayed in my dorm..."
"Well, she changed in front of me, that didn't tip me off. She stayed in my dorm for 5 days, I was none the wiser. She said she wanted to kiss me, I finally figured it out."
"Although this may be more for initial attraction, women tend to 'oh so casually' drop into conversation their relationship status or better yet, lack thereof. It's rarely subtle, but I don't think men do it quite so much."
Well, if you make clear that you're available, then it would make sense that someone might think that you're interested.
"Though the rule of thumb is usually..."
"It's something that can't really be answered as we are all different in our actions and how we interpret things.
Though the rule of thumb is usually if they attempt to spend more time with you and often seek your help, even if you don't know the answer. It's usually a presence thing. Though again, they may just simply enjoy your company and don't like you any more than just a friend."
"If you hang out..."
"If you hang out in the same social circles there are a few sure-fire ways. The one that is really telling is when something funny happens that makes the entire group laugh. If they look at you straight away to see if you found it funny, they're into you."
I had this happen to me a few times. Sometimes it worked out and sometimes it didn't, I'll leave it at that.
"If you have a watch..."
"If you have a watch, look at the time then look somewhere random. Chances are they will also check the time."
"If you have mutual friends..."
"If you have mutual friends or acquaintances it would probably be your friends or their friends giving you hints or teasing that the person is romantically interested in you."
This has happened with some of my friends and it's pretty cute when it's reciprocated!
"I asked my girlfriend..."
"I asked my girlfriend to marry me today and she said yes. I have suspicions she might have a crush."
Plot twist: it's you!
"A girl would always..."
"This happened to me in college. A girl would always glance at me and when we lock eyes she would look away. I asked her out and during our conversation she touched my forearms and thighs a few times."
When it comes to crushes, it's not necessarily one size fits all, so take any and all advice with a grain of salt. You're better off being direct, but that is, of course, easier said than done.
Have some tips of your own? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!
Want to "know" more?
Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.
Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
You feel safe all the time...
...but the world is more dangerous than you realize. Even the things you don't normally assume to be deadly, the actions you do every day, can lead to some unfortunate injury or, worse, death.
Watch out for springs. Seriously.
What's dangerous but most people don't realize?
Never underestimate the power of nature. Be it living or non-living, the things out in the wild are more ferocious than you realize.
Water Always Wins
"Water, specifically moving water. People have no sense about how powerful large volumes of moving water can be."
"My grandfather used to point out boulders in flash flood channels and ask us how they got there. A flash flood is literally thousands of gallons of water moving with the force of a hurricane, mowing down anything in it path; your odds of survival if you get caught in one are slim to none. Water is no joke!"pretty-as-a-pic
They're Called "Wild" For A Reason
"Ever since I saw that woman on TV that was ripped apart by her own pet chimp, I swear I would freak out if I ever had to be in the vicinity of a chimp irl. She didn't die but it f-cked her up bad enough that those things scare me. When people use them in music videos or whatever, I always think of that lady."
"It wasn't her chimp - it was her neighbor's. And she was known to the chimp, and had interacted with it for years before, on friendly terms."
"One day it just went, well, ape.."
It's Literally A Big Ball Of Burning Death
"THE SUN. Skin cancer is a major killer that is easily preventable by wearing sunscreen. Sun damage is more significant than many people realize and it's such an easy thing to avoid."
Even The Cute Ones...
"ALL wild animals are dangerous, even if they don't look it. Most people know that large predators like mountain lions and bears are dangerous, but many underestimate herbivores and/or smaller animals like deer and squirrels. A lot of people assume smaller animals/herbivores are tame, and try to get close or even touch them. This is extremely dangerous- these animals don't understand humans, and an animal that feels cornered or threatened will lash out to try and escape. Please keep a safe and respectful distance from any animal you don't know!"
Going to the doctor can feel like a big weight, especially if you don't have the right kind of coverage. That's probably why things like the following can lead to dangerous outcomes.
Brush, Brush, Brush Your Teeth
"An infected tooth."
"True! An abscess under the gum line can literally kill you."
"Argued with a receptionist about this. I had one badly and she said she'd never heard of it killing anyone. Like... yeah, ask your damn boss."
Go For A Walk
"A bad diet and sedentary lifestyle. Most people don't think about how these two can lead to an incredible amount of health problems and how they can remain asymptomatic for years and suddenly have a heart attack or stroke."
And then there's these, typical, every day actions or items we might come into contact with which actually pose more of a threat than we realize.
Watch out for those springs.
"Driving. The forces involved in driving are way above anything the human body can withstand should things go wrong. All the safety features built into cars lead us to believe that it's a safe activity, which encourages additional risky behaviors like texting. Everybody should be hyper focused while driving down the highway at 80mph, but almost everybody is doing something else in addition to driving."
Buckle Up THE RIGHT WAY
"90% of children are improperly restrained in the car."
"I spent a decade as a CPST and the things I've seen are deeply upsetting knowing they're easily fixable with an hour or two of effort."
"I've seen children internally decapitated. Parents put their kids in car seats forward facing far too early, booster seats before they're truly large enough, coats under the straps, straps never properly tightened."
"Car accidents are still a leading cause of death. The awareness has gotten better in the last 15 years but with plenty of room for improvement."
"If you have a child, please make an appointment with a certified CPST whenever they are big enough for their next seat or seating position. It's worth the effort."
"Also, not every fire fighter is a CPST. The goal is to teach YOU how to install the seat, not to have them do it for you."
Think Of Your Mental Health
"toxic workplace. stay there long enough and you will hate life itself"
"And then the toxic people who say "think about the money" when you mention quitting for your mental health"
Hire A Professional
"Garage door springs will f-ck you up."
"I'm generally a do-it-yourselfer, but I don't mess with breaker boxes or garage door springs."
Be safe out there. You never know when a wild spring is going to jump out of the dark, ready to attack.
Want to "know" more?
Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.
Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.