"Parents of kids that have died: How did it affect you?" –– This was today's burning question from Redditor 3storation and it's a tough one.
Few things can change the course of someone's life like losing a child. Those who've experienced the loss and weathered the pain have likened it to the worst pain that can possibly be dealt.
"It changes you forever..."
It changes you forever. There's no going back. Things eventually get better and you find a different level of happiness but there's always that empty space in your heart. I used to be very happy go lucky and lived life day by day. Now I feel like I have to be over prepared for the future just in case.
"It's having a future..."
It destroys you. It's having a future you envisioned for yourself shattered. No two ways about it. Unless you have a great relationship with your partner it can tear you apart. It takes months/years to get back to a good place mentally and even then you're forever changed by it. If you can then you gain an understanding of the world you hope others never need but you're much more compassionate than you ever were.
"It took almost 10 years..."
I pretty much gave up on life. Ate like sh!t, didn't exercise at all. Would go months without brushing my teeth. I'd eat out of the same bowl for days without washing it. Ended up with digestive issues so bad that I was chugging pepto like it was water.
Isolated myself so I lost most of my friends. Couldn't focus at work, so bounced from job to job.
It took almost 10 years, but I eventually came out of that dark place. The pain is still there, but I actually live now, and not just survive.
There are not really any sufficient words to describe it. I had watched my aunt and uncle go through the loss of their son before my daughter died but even being that close to that never could have prepared me for the gut wrenching horror of my own child dying suddenly.
She died at age 2, she would be 15 now.
At first I felt numb, it was terrifying in every way. I felt out of my own self, I know I screamed and cried a lot but I also just existed without feeling anything at times. Sheer exhaustion I think and I had another child to take care of, a 3 month old. At times even know when I think of what happened or am reminded of it somehow it feels surreal like surely that couldn't have actually happened...like it was a horror story I read or watched and not a thing I actually had to go through.
I suppose that is my brain trying to get some relief from the pain for awhile.
In some ways it made me more afraid, scared of losing another child or loved one.
But in other ways I felt like, well I already went through hell life, what else ya got!? Kind of angry and like f*** it I don't give a sh!t what happens to me now.
I do not feel I really begin to even deal with her death until a few years ago because I had a newborn like I said, then I ended up having another baby too kind of close together. My life became a whirlwind of just taking care of them. I focused on them so much and my health slowly declined worse and worse over the years.
I feel like I am just now beginning to try to figure out how to really live again for myself. Everything has been about raising my kids. I'm rather exhausted, depressed, have anxiety, and PTSD from it.
There is no going back, there is no being normal, there is only learning to live with what happened and doing my best to be present for my family, and now figuring out how to actually be a healthy human again because as I am getting older it is getting harder to maintain an acceptable level of health (physically and mentally) without a lot of effort.Did I mention I'm tired? Grief it seems, makes one very tired.
And I can be seemingly fine for a long time, and sometimes her birthday or anniversary of her death passes and I'm fine. Some years it hits me like a freight train and I am down for a good long while. This month is the anniversary of her death and I am a big mess this time. Last year it hit me rather hard as well, where as the year before that it did not. Grief is and odd and unpredictable beast.
I still have some fun good times, I can still feel happy. But it is actually getting harder lately as my children get older. I have more time to feel these things lately. When they were little it was always something and the busyness of raising little kids was a distraction from what I was feeling.
And I feel sad for my kids too, that they never got to know their big sister. many a time when my other daughter was little and I saw two little sisters together I would break down ... my heart breaking that my daughter didn't get to have her sister with her.
I do often feel like I am more grateful for my kids, like even during really hard times I am just glad they are just HERE with me.
It did help me better understand people who were suffering loss, to be more empathetic to them.
But at the same time it caused me to be more impatient with people who seem to think life is like this magical fairy ride of happiness and joy. People like that tend to tick me off now where as before they did not. I try to realize they just don't know what this type of pain does to a person and that's ok, the world needs those types too and I wouldn't wish this on anyone. But it isn't something I like to be around anymore. I feel alienated from many people because of my sadness. Like I just do not fit in anymore.
And I hate how people change how they look at me or talk to me when they find out one of my children died. I really hate that. And I hate people asking me how she died. Like yeah....why not ask what she was like instead?! She was a wonderful little person and I rather talk about how wonderful her little life was than the horrible day we lost her.
And one I guess I could call this a positive, I don't break my back working on certain things in life anymore, so many things I now see as a waste of time because life is so freaking short and I shouldn't get so hung up on these details.
"Part of this..."
Lost my best friend to suicide a year ago. Still keep in touch with his dad. "My dreams are shattered" is his go-to refrain about his life following the death of his only child. He seems to just be going through the motions of life now. He just doesn't seem to feel any kind of purpose or drive anymore. It is deeply depressing to witness, and there's really nothing anyone can do about it.
He embraces the idea of stoicism - i.e., don't let things outside of your control bother you - but you can't really live that philosophy 100% of the time. We're all human and have emotions. So as much as he tries to cope he has a difficult go of it.
He feels very guilty. Part of this is because my friend shot himself with the gun his dad bought him. But another piece is just his belief that, more or less, the buck stops with him when it comes to his sons death. He feels like as a dad, if you lose your kid, you must have done something wrong along the way or not parented as ideally as possible. I have tried talking him out of this but I can't get through. After a suicide everyone feels guilty that they hadn't done more (myself included), but it appears that he has an especially bad case of this.
Over a decade now. Through hell and worse. I am more empathetic, quicker to admit I may not understand fully why people are the way they act (could be a bad day, sick loved one, dead loved one) - who knows sometimes. I am more forgiving,
I understand the importance of living with kindness towards others and more importantly myself. I am mostly happy most days. To the comment posted above, there is always a gap in my heart and soul and I continually strive to mend everyday. It will never be the same, but no day is.
It ruins your entire life. The future you saw that you tried to prepare for is no more. Everything that once brought you joy brings nothing but pain and misery. I lost my daughter when she was 3 months (she was born at 26 weeks weighing 1lb) she was a twin and she was my first born. My everything. I knew her before she was born and when we finally met it was like we were one. I could just feel her energy and man was this girl full of love. She smiled so much for a baby. She was such a fighter and to see that fight slowly die in such a little.being destroys you.
To lose a child makes you feel so worthless and hopeless. Yes I have her sister and they are identical but they are not the same person and I love my other daughter so much so that her and her brother are the only reason that I am still alive. Had i lost both of my girls I probably would have killed myself. But having other children to love and take care of keeps me going. There are days though where I feel like ending it all, that I feel like I am ruining my childrens lives because I haven't healed and I haven't stopped blaming myself for my daughters death. But then I see my daughters face and she just smiles at me or my son starts laughing and I know I will be enough for them.
But losing a child kills apart of you. I am praying for every person that has commented. I know your pain and you are not alone. To op if you are a parent and you need someone to talk to please reach out to people, it is ok to need someone. If you are a child wondering if your parents will be ok without you, no they won't so please reach out and talk to someone. If you are just a friend or family member of someone trying to figure out how to help them in their difficult time then ask them because everyone person is different.
"You have to make adjustments..."
Kind of like getting an arm amputated in mid-life. You have to make adjustments going forward with things that you do. And you're reminded that something is missing. You get better with time, and can be happy. But you fall into wonder sometimes, what could they have become.
"I don't know why that one thing..."
Initially there were parts that really killed me. Like after being told he had passed my mind was flooded with visions of a future with him and then seeing that future violently torn away. My son died a few days after being born and would be 13 this year. I remember just being distraught and repeating, "I'll never teach him how to tie his shoes." I don't know why that one thing stuck out but that's what I saw... A future where I'd never be able to teach him how to tie his shoes. In the grand scope of everything that's the one detail that just broke me. The relationship with his mother ended because I was too dumb to be there for her and realize she needed me. I just retreated for awhile.
"My first wife and I..."
Some of the details are...less than pleasant. I just want to give fair warning. My first wife and I were pregnant, and it was a surprise; we weren't married yet, had some adjusting to do, but we managed. We were young, certainly not prepared, but who really ever is, I suppose?
We were about 4 months along, so out of that first trimester danger zone, we thought. As things had gone along, we had started to plan, started thinking of names for a boy, names for a girl, telling our parents and siblings. Generally getting excited, right? This was a big first for both of us, after all, a big first for both our extended families, planned or not, and everyone was on board and supportive.
Then she calls me one night while I'm working graveyard shift across town. She's bleeding, she's in the hospital, and I need to be there 5 minutes ago. I run out of work and get there as fast as my beat-up old Explorer can possibly go. She's in a room, hooked up, IV in, some med student resident occasionally stopping in and saying virtually nothing. I already know at this point. The world I'd imagined, the life ahead of me, it was all gone. Christ, I'd gone back to college to try and do right for this baby that was never going to be. I'd shaped up, started working an extra job on the weekends, read all the baby books, quit smoking, quit drinking, we had both done everything right, damn it, why? I knew, though. It wasn't going to be. She didn't, though. Despite our differences in the years after, bless her for that; she still hoped.
So I pretended to hope, too. I tried to hope. For another hour and a half, I tried to hope so she wouldn't lose that much, on top of everything I knew we already had, if only for a bit longer. Until finally it wasn't the resident who came in. It was our OB. And then she knew too, as he explained that sometimes these things just happen. Sometimes you do everything right and these things still just happen. He left, and I cried for the first time since I was a little kid. I sobbed, and we both cried together until we had no choice but to leave and try to keep living after the world fell down around us. And we thought that was the worst of it.
Because she hadn't been that far along, apparently the thing to do is to "let nature run its course," and clear her body out on its own. And that seemed like a heavy period for a few days as we both sank into a gray depression, which was not a combination that made her feel any better at all. Until suddenly it clearly was not just a heavy flow. I was on the bed for what was probably the 20th consecutive hour when I heard her collapse in the bathroom and start sobbing, the kind of sound that only comes when a part of your soul has gone and won't be back.
I won't try to put in words what I saw, only that for a brief moment we both had to see what should have been our first child. It was terrible. I thought I had hurt up to that point, but that moment tore a piece out of me that will not grow back, not if I had a hundred lifetimes to let it.
Now, years later, we've moved on with our lives separately, and I have a baby daughter more beautiful than I could ever have imagined someone could be. And I love her more than I ever would have believed it possible to love someone, and my life is whole and great. But there is still a part of me that is gone and will never be there again.
"It hurts forever."
Never the same. Nothing is the same. You have a black hole where all the love and affection just disappeared into. What's left is a sadness that no matter what will never go away; a regret and a sort of I wish. It hurts forever.
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There's no shortage of excellent horror fiction out there. Recently I read The Terror by Dan Simmons and can't remember the last time I felt that claustrophobic and nervous. But I am also a fan of quite a few classics. Are there any other horror books that capture grief as effectively as Stephen King's Pet Sematary? What other book evokes folk horror as beautifully as Thomas Tryon's Harvest Home? Let's not forget this wonderful classic: The Haunting of Hill House. I could rave about that one (and Shirley Jackson) for days. All of these books left their mark on me and yes, I'd include them on a list (if I were to make one) of some of the scariest books I've read.
People had their own opinions to share––and books to recommend––after Redditor Tylerisdumber asked the online community,
"What's the scariest book you've ever read?"
"Gerald's Game. I've read lots of Stephen King and this one scared me the most. Slept with the lights on for several nights."
Everything about this book is creepy. Don't even get me started on the... degloving. I'm sorry I even typed that word out.
"It's not a long story..."
"The Yellow Wallpaper.
It's not a long story and I'd highly recommend going in knowing little to nothing about it. It's brilliant and terrifying. Published in 1892 as well if that's any interest!"
Few stories make you feel this sad. A pretty stunning piece of work––and yes, unnerving. Can really get under your skin.
"I think it was mainly..."
"For some reason, Salem's Lot by Stephen King.
I think it was mainly because I was on a week-long hiking trip in the Australian bush and it got dark and scary at night. But damn, I had trouble sleeping for a couple of nights. Then the friend I was hiking with read it, and he couldn't sleep either."
This is probably my favorite early King––and for good reason. The sense of atmosphere is impeccable. Those characters are loveable and you genuinely care about what happens to them. Then the book veers from horror into tragedy. It's quite moving.
"Just the knowledge..."
"On The Beach.
It's the most soul-crushing book I've ever read, and there's really nothing scary in it.
Just the knowledge of impending death for everyone that feels so awfully heavy."
This is one of those books that makes you feel hopeless.
It's impeccably written but wow... it's a truly heavy read.
"You never knew..."
It's a classic. I found it to be immensely chilling. You never knew what would happen and the writing instilled a sort of dread. I read it in the dark before I went to bed until I finished it."
A book I can read and re-read over and over again. It's a beautiful horror novel. It's also a really fascinating window into the era and manages to say a lot about social and class mores.
"I'm Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid. Very creepy and unnerving, definitely scared me reading it at night."
I wanted to really like this one––unfortunately, I did not––but there's no denying that the first third or so (especially once the two protagonists get to the house) is pretty unnerving. Shame the payoff wasn't all that.
"It was disturbing and horrifying..."
"Helter Skelter. It's about the Manson murders and goes into quite a bit of detail. It was disturbing and horrifying because, unlike the King novels also mentioned, it's true. What they did to Sharon Tate is so absolutely devastating. Pure evil."
This book is gruesome and not for the faint of heart. The level of detail we dive into learning about the Tate-LaBianca murders is remarkable and also rather nauseating.
"So the book's characters..."
"Bird Box by Josh Malerman.
Forget the Netflix movie. The book's monsters are terrifying, in that you simply just don't know what they are or what they look like. They could be anything. What they are is enough to drive people insane by just being looked at.
So, the book's characters have to navigate a world mostly without one of our most used senses, and what's more terrifying than something you can't see?
This leads to some utterly scary scenes in the book that sent my heart racing and I had to put down for a breather."
It's a shame that movie wasn't all that and a bag of potato chips.
"It's a different kind of scary..."
"It's a different kind of scary, but The Handmaid's Tale. Atwood's dystopian nation feels not that far from reality sometimes, and it absolutely terrifies me."
We're going to go there.
Yes, this book is terrifying.
"I feel like the movie..."
"The Ruins, by Scott Smith, messed me up pretty good. My favorite kind of horror is psychological, and while there is a physical "entity" the real horror is the helplessness of this stranded group trapped by something they don't understand. Their desperate struggle to hold on to their sanity and the slow descent into hopeless desperation just really hit hard.
I feel like the movie was a fairly faithful adaptation, although it's been a while since I've seen it."
I love this book and have read it multiple times over the years. It's slow-going... and then the final one-hundred pages are just horrifying.
Well, if you haven't read any of these... What are you waiting for? Get on that. You won't regret it.
But also... the world is pretty scary right now, so we understand if you need to take a step back.
Have some suggestions of your own? Feel free to tell us in the comments below!
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Have you ever traveled to a city you've always heard good things about, only to be totally let down upon arrival?
When a friend insists we travel to certain cities because we would "just love it," they're setting the bar pretty high.
And a city can also boast a rich history or an attraction that makes us curious enough to find out what makes it so appealing.
But, alas, when we finally reach the destination, it's never exactly what we thought it would be.
Curious to hear from strangers online, Redditor tshirtguy2000 asked:
"What city is overrated?"
These are not officially real cities but they do have a rotating population.
It's Always A Party There
"As a former
slave associate at party city. I 100% agree."
"Lego City. There always has to be someone falling into the river."
"Cabot Cove, the murder capital of the world."
"Sure, the murders are all solved, but would you really want to live in a city with that much, easily solved, crime?"
Neighbor To Springfield
Shelbyville. Those f'kers steal trees from neighboring cities.
These were once considered destination cities but their popularity eventually took a nose dive.
"Atlantic City. Venture a few blocks off the boardwalk and it's incredibly depressing. Very clearly an area exploited by the big casinos while the locals have been driven to absolute poverty, while they still force a smile to work the shops that are required for the tourist traffic."
Lots Of Water
"Niagara Falls, Canada. I grew up there. Mayor pumps most of tax $ to casinos and tourism with flashy vegas-esque attractions."
"Myrtle Beach. I'm not even saying that it has a good reputation, I'm just saying that any shred of positive thinking about it makes it overrated."
Where A Creek Is An Exciting Attraction
"Lamb's Grove, Iowa. It's not the paradise on earth that people always say it is. Don't get me wrong, it's got great Chinese food but the motel 6 is meh at best."
Impressions for these cities fell far below expectation.
"Dubai. It's the clickbait of the world. 'We have the biggest/tallest/most expensive YOU WON'T BELIEVE when you see THIS...' It's hot as f*k, everything's a man-made tourist trap; labor exploitation and racism are rampant, and they try so hard to prove to the world how modern and Westernized they are. Really, it's just government propaganda."
"Miami. Horrible place filled with horrible people."
Truth be told, many cities can be overrated.
It just depends on a person's experience, or a resident's perspective about what it is about the location they live in that is nothing worth writing home about.
If I had to choose, I would say Las Vegas is overrated, but that's because there is nothing in Sin City that is of personal interest to me.
I may be severely judged for my opinion, but that is a gamble I'm willing to take.
The opposite sex can be a bit of a mystery sometimes. Our brains work differently just like our bodies and this can lead to certain sensitive questions. Guys tend to be a little less open but today it's time for the ladies to ask away. Even wondered what they really think or feel about their body, yours? Today's the day to get the answers you didn't know you needed.
Redditor William84000 asked:
“Women of reddit, what question do you have of men that you'd really like an answer to?"
His question started an informative thread for women to ask men the questions they've been wondering and receive honest, real-life answers.
“How long does it take to recover if you've been hit in the balls?” Snowy-avocado
“Anywhere from 5 minutes to literally turning to dust like we were Thanos snapped.” secondhand_organsdust whirls GIFGiphy
“The Big Dumb Object...”
“I've always wanted to know: why do you like loud machinery so much? For older men it's mowers, leaf blowers and such. For younger men, it's modified cars and motorbikes. What's the deal with the loud machines?” marshmellow_bunnyx
“Power and tools. Tools are a thing that gets stuff done, and they are loud because they contain the
natural essence power of violent explosions and fire. Most men like powerful things, instead of powerful people.”
“In sci-fi, this is called 'The Big Dumb Object', and is pretty much a trademark of sci fi books written by men” Connect-Zebra7173
To shave or not to shave?
“Does body hair on a woman bother you that much?" reillydean28
“Leg/arm hair? Don't even notice. Armpit hair? Not my thing but not my choice/decision. Pubic hair? I'd prefer not, but it's not going to stop me from getting the job done." wHUT_fun
It’s a power and control thing...
“Why send a d*ck pic?" stavinlawrence
“I think for most men it's a power dynamic thing. Either it gets them off or it just makes them feel in control."
“Then I assume there's the added bonus of if she likes it she might send a nude back. But these losers have a greater chance of buying a "get bigger penis pills" that actually work before a girl appreciates an unsolicited nude." InertialEclipse
"Do you notice the little things?”
“Do you notice the little things about women like a new hair cut, when they wear makeup or a nice outfit?” xforeverlove22
“I can't speak for everyone but for me, nope. Not at all. My uncle had a moustache for like 20 years and one day decided to shave it off. I didn't notice it. I noticed there was a weird atmosphere around me like ‘come on, say something’, so I small talked with him.”
“A few hours later after he left they asked me if I seriously didn't notice that his moustache was gone. My answer was ‘What moustache?‘ And makeup would definitly fly over my head.” PleaseTakeThisName
Lets just not touch people without permission...
“What things have women done that make you uncomfortable?" charloget
“Had a few grab my junk at random. Even had a couple that just forced a kiss on me. I don't usually experience women trying to pick me up, but the few times I did was never great. It was either negging, overly sexually aggressive and always in a group." bahamabanana
On today's episode of sink of float...
“Do penis' float like a buoy? I heard they do but have never been able to verify it.” TheFantasticV
“I mean it's buoyant but it can't really do much besides lazily sorta half float there. Still amused the f**k out of my wife to learn.” secondhand_organsGiphy
Everyone just wants to be loved...
“What makes you feel loved?” linedizzy
“A compliment, a hug or a kiss we don't have to initiate.” Nuitari8
“Do guys care if women get cosmetic procedures done?” dookieconductor
“I don't necessarily care about the work itself, I'd be more concerned about understanding why she felt like she wanted to get it done and help her feel body positive for whatever work has been done or if she feels like she needs work.” -notjosh-
Math will kill a mood everytime...
“What does it feel like when you're having sex and you're trying not to 'get there'? Is it frustrating? What do you do/think about to keep it from happening?" uhohoreolas
“I sometimes do math like 333*3... But often I am fine with just controlling things to focus mostly on her pleasure instead of mine. Tho sometimes she is excited and ends up moving in unaccounted ways while I am a hair away and there is no stopping it. I definitely don't find it frustrating. It is still very enjoyable." Fkire
Some of these Q&A's were unexpected but now we know! This important thing here though is knowing it's ok to ask questions sometimes.
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Everyone's got their own favorite food.
What are two foods that actually taste great together......even though most people don't eat them that way?
Breakfast is the most wonderful meal of the day. As the wise Leslie Knope once said, "Why would anybody ever eat anything besides breakfast food?" So mixing it up can feel blasphemous, but what if it's tasty?
Jam It On
"When I was growing up, it was standard procedure for us to put grape jelly on scrambled eggs. I did it when I went to college and everyone at the table stared at me. I still like it."
"That sounds gross af, but not too gross that I don't still want to try it. Haha"
Bringing People Together
"Peanut butter and maple syrup."
"My husband and I both grew up eating PB and syrup on our waffles. We took that as a sign it was meant to be."
"Peanut butter and syrup on waffles is one of the single best things I have ever had, also growing up with it"
Mustard?! Don't Let's Be Silly.
"Mustard with scrambled eggs. Actually I haven't had it in a while but from what I remember its really good"
"Mustard with eggs period"
Sauces and dips are critical to enjoying some foods. Mess with it too much and you risk ruining the delicacy. So that's why it's reassuring to see these people offering up their new spins on dip combinations.
Only For The Elegant Dining Experience
"Hummus and salsa mixed together with tortilla chips."
"Fancy bean dip."
Peanut Butter With Everything!
"Peanut butter and cheddar cheese (like the proper brick kind, not kraft cheese slices). When I was a kid I sometimes made myself pb and cheese sandwiches. They're very filling but delicious!"
"Toasted English muffin, butter, peanut butter, raspberry jam and marble cheddar on top. Lord have mercy on me."
"Add a litte hot sauce on the peanut butter."
Better Than Garlic Sauce?
"I already posted but I'm eating pizza with my friend right now and he likes his pizza with hummus."
"Hummus is good with so many things."
"So I make spaghetti noodles, but break up the raw noodles into smaller pieces. Once they're done I put in a an egg or two (mix it around) and let it cook. I swear it's not that bad. My Nonna always makes it for me when I go back to the Midwest to visit. It's good with parmesan cheese too."
And then there's these taste combinations. Mixtures so strange, you might just be willing to walk away from your phone or computer and try one now.
Sweet And Savory?
"Watermelon and feta cheese."
"With red onion and balsamic vinegar."
"Thats like the most basic summer thing in Greece, Balkans, Turkey together with some Uzo or Raki"
Who Lives In A Cheddar Under The Sea?
"Pineapple and cheddar."
"A guy at work introduced me to dipping a peanut butter and honey sandwich into chili. That was surprisingly great."
A Creative Spin On An Old Favorite
"Root beer float except with cherry Coke and chocolate ice cream. I was in middle school on a field trip, last in line at the cream shop, and ordered this after everyone else had done the standard root beer and vanilla. One of the cool girls who had never spoken my name before gave me this piercing look and asked if I would switch with her. I instinctively knew I would get zero benefit from this deal, so I said "Nope, ya gotta just remember it next time." That felt good."
Keep an open mind. Don't do this for every meal, sure, but always be ready to try something new.