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People Who've Been On Reality Shows Describe The Aftermath

Tuning in for a reality show
Photo by Erik Mclean on Unsplash

We've all seen an episode or two of at least one reality show, and we all vary in how entertained we are by these shows.

We can all understand that these shows are exaggerated for the sake of entertainment, but we have to wonder, what really goes on behind the curtain?

Curious, Redditor body_by_art asked:

"People who were on shows like 'Supernanny,' 'The World's Strictest Parents,' or 'Scared Straight!,' what was the experience like?"
"And what was the aftermath?"

Perpetuating Stereotypes

"I really dislike this ‘idiot dad’ narrative that a lot of media pushes. It’s sexist not only in that it says that men are stupid, but also in that it assumes women’s ‘place’ is managing the household."

- Reddit

For Health Benefits

"I'd like to contribute from a different show; hopefully someone sees this! My brother was on a show called 'Violent Children: Desperate Parents,' and honestly they were brilliant."

"I wasn't part of this whole experience because I was in University at the time, but my father and my brother both were in this show and the show staff was honestly brilliant."

"Here in the UK, especially Wales where my family lives, mental health is not really a thing the poor have access to and my family is definitely working class. This show gave my brother and my father access to mental healthcare they would have never been able to access themselves and made quite a large difference in both their lives."

"They continued to support my family for almost a year after filming with offers of more mental health help, and both my father and my brother are happier people today because of this."

"One thing I will say is the only reason we were featured on this show was out of pure desperation. There was basically no other way that my father could imagine getting help, given he'd spent almost eight years fighting with the NHS to get my brother psychological help, all to basically no avail."

"My family was made into entertainment for the masses so that we could access something fairly basic. Something about the whole experience doesn't sit right with me at all."

- kn100

Exaggerated to a Fault

"I'm a little bit late to this one, but my younger siblings, mother, and then stepfather were on a program in the UK called 'Mum's On Strike' in the mid-2000s."

"The premise was that the mother would be sick of doing everything around the house, and would be whisked away to a luxury spa for a weekend, leaving the clueless father in charge of trying to take care of the household duties."

"A lot of the conversations and scenarios were faked. I supposedly visited them for the weekend, but I did multiple different shoots across a few hours on the last day of filming, then went back home."

"They'd cause fights between the siblings by purposely creating situations where one was favored over the other, so the others would throw a tantrum."

"There was a shoot on location in our local town center, and they encouraged my little brother to run off into all sorts of different shops, causing hilarity as my stepfather tried chasing after him with two other children in tow."

"Mealtimes were a bit of a farce as well. As it was a weekend, my stepfather had to cook a traditional roast dinner. The production company intentionally supplied incorrect ingredients to make sure my stepfather looked like an idiot. They filmed my reaction to him trying to add beans to the roast a few different times, so they could pick the best one."

"In the end, after they'd got all the footage they wanted, they sent one of the production team out to the chippy to get us some actual edible food."

- Henry1691

No Air Time

"I was on 'Scared Straight,' and my episode never even aired because they only select a very small amount of footage to make it look a lot worse than it actually is. Most prisoners were pretty nice."

- franklinclinton1

Dramatic Transformations

"A classmate was on MTV's 'Made.' They came to my high school too and turned a classmate into prom queen. It wasn’t a stretch, she was naturally pretty but went back to her nerd look right after they left."

"It was crazy how MTV made it look like she had no friends when she actually had a huge group she’d hang out with all the time."

"They also made her love interest look like such a jerk when he was actually the nicest guy you’d ever meet."

"I haven’t believed reality TV since 2005. Still enjoy the ridiculousness of it sometimes."

- TheRealMrsNesbit

So Staged

"A friend of mine worked on 'Nanny 911' in NYC. Nothing on that show happened unless the producers okayed it. They would come up with scenarios and plot points to film."

"You don't just shoot TV shows like that and hope that something magical happens. They created every 'issue.'"

"Reality TV is not real."

"Also, the camera crew who worked on 'Nanny 911' also worked on other shows like 'Real Housewives of New York,' Kitchen Nightmares,' and 'Hell's Kitchen.' The film business is a very small world."

- Jonlife

Nothing Revelatory About It

"My friend was on 'Supernanny,' they don't actually do anything, it's just acting, he and his brother are still exactly the same as they were before."

- screamingXeagle

Breaking the Cycle

"Her techniques on 'Supernanny' (and, honestly, the children themselves) are never really the problem, it's the parents."

"She's not there long enough to break years of bad parenting habits. I imagine that a lot of the parents just revert right back to their old ways as soon as the camera crew packs up their stuff."

- xaviira

Safety Precautions

"One of my friends in grade school was on 'Nanny 911' as a kid (maybe around five years old)."

"There were a lot of kids in her family and one of the biggest problems the nanny had with their household was safety. She baby-proofed the entire house and lectured them on safety precautions they have to take in their lives to ensure that the children wouldn't get hurt."

"She even gave them all helmets to wear whenever they rode bikes or 4-wheelers."

"After she left, a lot of the safety precautions went out of the window, and later my friend told me that they still had the helmets but they were all sitting in a dusty corner."

- -k_d_t-

Scripting Matters

"I worked on 'Teen Mom' and saw how the process works. It’s mostly just the crew following the people around, letting them live their lives with the producer occasionally throwing in some talking points and guiding the 'talent' on what topics they need to touch on."

"But there was no actual scripting involved. There was way more emphasis on the editing if anything."

- TostitoNipples

Small World

"I lived in India. Once in my school when I was in sixth grade, these 'foreign kids' popped up with a bunch of cameramen and stuff. Speculation went wild. We thought our terrible principal probably wanted to create a 'cool' image for the school and was creating some kind of weird advertisement."

"Anyway, years later, I saw a YouTube clip by complete chance of 'The World's Strictest Parents.' It was my school and those exact kids! They had come to visit an Indian family, whose children went to my school."

"The episode was a lot of drama. The parents were kind of obnoxious, at least for the episode."

"However, the last I heard on asking a few friends was that those parents were fine and their children are doing reasonably well. Not sure about the 'foreign kids' who came."

"What a small world! Seems like ages ago."

- ReelWatt

Close to Home

"Like three years ago, I lived in a big 5-bedroom house with four other friends in college. The house was in an episode of 'Supernanny.' We found out because our nice neighbor literally gave us a signed headshot from Jo Frost as a gift out of the blue."

"He literally told us, 'I think y’all would like this more than me and get a kick out of it.'"

"It made our week and we found the episode online and watched it. I asked about the family to the neighbor as our house was rented out and owned by a property company."

"He told me after the show the parents fought all the time, lost all of their money due to 2008 crisis, and lost the house to foreclosure."

"The picture stayed on our mantle for three years and I thought about that family every time."

- Redditor deleted

Beyond Surreal

"My childhood home had been in a famous episode of a famous reality show. (I'd doxx myself if I said which.)"

"It was so odd watching it. It was filmed before we bought it and my parents remodeled it. So it was weird seeing how it looked when we first bought it. Seeing all the old stuff. And also my neighborhood. The outside of my best friend's house was also featured heavily in the episode."

"My parents loved pointing out bits they personally remodeled. 'I remember pulling that out!' and 'Ug, remember that awful wallpaper!' and that sort of thing."

"The funniest part was that they pretended a closet door was a bathroom door in the show. My parents actually built a bathroom there, before ever seeing the episode. So it was really head-spinning to see that."

- harpejist

The Dreaded Watch Party

"A coworker was featured on SuperNanny. They had a pretty good experience filming and were so excited for their show to air that they hosted a watch party."

"I’m sure you can imagine what’s next. The way the show was edited made the parents look SO bad (like, neglectful bad) and made the kids (who were pretty wild) look even worse."

"It ended up being a pretty awkward watch party."

- shan_diego

A Great Future

"I don't know if this counts but I was on an episode of 'MADE' on MTV (if anyone remembers that show)..."

"It was my senior year of high school, so about seven years ago. People gave me crap about it forever and still do. I was made into a 'screamo' singer, and the experience was interesting, to say the least."

"The money and flight/trip to NYC though at 17 years old made the whole embarrassment worth it. Plus, I work in the broadcast business now, so it really opened up a lot of doors and showed me a career I LOVE."

"Seeing kids now that were in my shoes, so fascinated by entertainment media, makes me so genuinely happy."


While everyone expects reality shows to be at least somewhat exaggerated, it's interesting to think about what goes on behind-the-scenes in order to make those dramatic scenes happen. Imagining someone acting completely out of character for the sake of a few scenes is particularly wild.

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.