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“Stranger danger" isn't just a rule for kids at the playground--it's a mentality that everybody should have. Maybe it's my paranoia, or the fact that as a woman I get catcalled every time I leave the freakin' house, but I personally believe that we need to be wary of strangers. And these stories are exactly why.

Here are some of the scariest encounters people have had with strangers. I'm not excited to read these- my anxiety won't thank me. Enjoy!

U/Anchovy7 asked: What's the scariest encounter you've had with a total stranger?

Being a former resident of New York City, I have had plenty of stories of people sitting next to me and saying creepy sh*t. It’s strangely comforting to know that other people feel that pain too.

Thank you, Marty.

It's a mix of the scariest, and the best:

I was eleven, and at the park with my cousin who was three. My cousin being a stubborn three year old told me to leave him be, and I sat out on the bench.

I was just reading my book, and occasionally looking up, until this like fifty something year old man sat down next to me, and just started talking.

He asked me, which kid was mine like four times, even after I made it quite clear I was uncomfortble, and then he get's all close to me, and was like:

"Do you want another one?"

So I started freaking out, until this homeless man, (who I later knew to be Marty) pulled me off the bench, and told him that he was lucky he didn't 'pop his jaw' and told me to go home.

I'm glad Marty showed up, because I don't know what I would have done.

Update: Marty says hello.

UrDadTxtMe

Never go to the library in a big city. Trust me.

steve buscemi trunk GIF Giphy

Not scary per se but deeply disturbing. Random dude at my local library accosted me while I was enjoying a new sci-fi novel and was absolutely convinced I was his son. Kept telling me he was sorry and he never meant to kill my mother who he called Pink and said some other heinous sh*t I won’t describe.

Bat sh*t crazy but he sounded so rational and calm the whole time. Sh*t gave me the creeps for a long time after.

Roguechimera

Creepy af.

I was in high school and worked at a truck stop.

One night a trucker came in and stared at me for a long time. Wherever I moved to he was staring me down. I told him that if he needed anything that he would need to come to the counter and order it.

He just grunted and kept staring.

I'm not a small person and at that time I was in football, wrestling, and track. I was also at the gym 6 days a week. I was 190 pounds of muscle and teenager hormones. But the vibes I was getting from this guy were making me nervous.

I called up my other co worker and told them I was going to be in the freezer for a while. So I was stocking the freezers and coolers for a while and then went to the bathroom.

As I entered the bathroom the trucker jumped up and walked in behind me and just stood in there while I took a piss and washed my hands.

As soon as I got out I grabbed the trash bags and bee lined outside to take care of the trash at the pumps until he left.

My co worker asked me why the trucker kept following me after I finally came in.

I had no idea why. He never said anything. Didn't order anything. Just filled up his semi and creeped on me.

I've never been as creeped out by a person as I was with that guy.

Memikeme

​The scariest encounters are the ones aimed at kids. Absolutely no sympathy for these monsters.

This is deeply disturbing.

When I was about 6 I was with my family at an incredibly crowded street festival we'd go to every year. I remember we had stopped to watch a band play for a minute or two, and then my mom (I assumed) took my hand and we continued walking.

After a few seconds I realized the hand I was holding was puffy and hot, and my mom's hands were always cool and more slender, so I knew it wasn't her hand I was holding. I looked up to see a woman with long blond hair and sunglasses grinning down at me. I said "You're not my mom" and she just laughed and said "That's okay, you can come with me anyway!"

Obviously my mom and dad had realized I was not with them at this point and were freaking out. My dad just happened to look in the exact right direction at the right time and saw this lady leading me away through a break in the crowd. He ran over to us, grabbed her shoulder and she dropped my hand and disappeared in the crowd.

I still can't believe he spotted us. It was like shoulder to shoulder people at this thing.

I_Want_A_Llama

Wtf....

yelling steve carell GIF Giphy

I was 16 and sitting on a train station with my mother. Some man came over and started talking to her.

After a while I looked at the clock and informed my mother that we needed to go because our train was about to arrive. He flew up from the seat and started screaming at me and wanted to fight me. My mother was confused and tried to explain to him that I was her daughter and that we really did need to leave. He just continued screaming which of course made teenage me scream back at him. She had to pull me away from there.

I never understood what made him see red like that. All I did was inform my mother our train was coming and we needed to leave.

WrestlingWoman

That’s horrifying.

I will never forget it. When Ghostbusters 2 came out I wanted to see it. My mom took me to the local theater I think I was around 9.

I needed to use the bathroom so I ran down the small hall and turned the corner. When I saw a much older man come out of the bathroom. When he saw me he stopped went back in. When I didn't move he opened the door peeking his head and arm out motioning me to come towards him. I probably looked like a deer in headlights I didn't move. It was frozen until he said: come on, come on in. Panic rushed over me and I ran back towards my mom, who said I was pale white. She quickly left the theater with me and went home. Stranger Danger worked out that day in the 80s.

I can still picture him, or atleast the picture my brain made of this memory.

Butters991

​So this one’s kinda obvious, but clearly there had to be a section about the horrors women go through every day if we dare step foot outside our homes. Here are a few intense stories.

Moms looking out for each other.

I dropped my son off at school one morning and then went to the grocery store with my infant daughter. It was so early, there was only 1 or 2 other customers. There was an older man with a walker that I didn't really pay too much attention to that kept popping up in the same aisle as us.

I got out to my car and put my groceries in and then was putting my daughter in her car seat when the man came up behind me. He asked me a question and when I turned to answer he shoved his walker into the back of my legs pinning me against my car inside the open door. I tried moving around but couldn't go anywhere except forward and he started pushing me down to the floor of my car. I was so scared that once he had me down there he was going to go for my daughter so I threw myself over her so my whole upper body was in her car seat and wedged myself in tight trying to cover as much of her as possible.

He grabbed me by the hair and was trying to pull me up when someone started honking their car horn. Another mom had been sitting in her car with her own baby asleep and had seen what was happening. Another car pulled up behind mine and the man ran over and got in quickly, obviously never needing the walker. The police were called but the plates on the car that he left in were stolen so as far as I know he was never found.

Lostmyshade

It can happen in your own home.

Movie Stabbing GIF Giphy

I was taking a shower in the bathroom of the walkout basement. My 3 year old son was upstairs with my mother eating breakfast. I heard him open the door and told him "Mommy is in the shower, you have to wait."

The door didn't close but he didn't respond either so I asked him to go back upstairs and ask grandma for whatever he needed.

Instead I see a a shadow and outline of a hand touching the shower curtain and realize that there is an ADULT in the bathroom, not my son.

I scream and punch through the shower curtain. I don't think I connected, but I heard the man run out anyway. As fast as I could I jumped out and grabbed a towel to check on my son and mom. At the same time my mom was coming downstairs to see if I was ok from the scream.

The man never went upstairs and they didn't even know it had happened. The walkout basement door and window were open.

I called the police and they didn't find him, just my empty wallet about a block away. They did come back to me a few weeks later to let me know that they caught a guy in the area assaulting women at gunpoint and they think it was the same guy.

Never been so scared in my life.

Add: The most visceral part for me was knowing he was just standing quietly in the bathroom while I talked to him like he was my son. Honestly, I don't know why but that creeps me out the most. It felt really violating at the time.

Like_big_mutts

Been there.

I was walking home from the bus stop after school. About 15 years old. It was really not far but there were construction workers drinking on the side of the road. One of them got up and followed me home calling suggestive things. I honestly can't remember what but his intentions were clear. This was about 200m from home so I sprint home. We have an automatic gate so I realize he will catch me if I wait for it to open or he'll follow me in. So I climb over which is normally not easy but that day I flew over.

I was really shaken up. For me this story is actually about what happened next. Which is that I called my mom who had an intense job. She dropped everything at work, came home immediately, made me hot chocolate and pancakes. We had a long conversation where she validated my feelings and fear. She's the best.

Vonnybon

Truck stops alone at night are the worst.

I was traveling home to California and I was in Nevada. It was an emergency so I'd packed and left at around midnight. It was about five thirty am or so in rural Nevada. I was at a stop on my usual route. I was very familiar with the particular stop, and it was just an hour or so before the California border.

Being a lone female, I concealed carry (I have my extended permit which allowed concealed through several states, except California) and I was at my truck at an empty spot, and I was in the cab disassembling and putting away my gun to be in compliance. Stepped out to go to the restroom and someone had managed to get close to my truck and was hiding along the passenger side, and I didn't know it until I'd walked passed them.


Whoever it was grabbed me from behind. I let out the loudest, most blood-curdling scream. Oscar-winning scream. But there was no other people at this stop. I fought and tried to buck the guy off of me, but I wasn't doing very well. Kicking lead him to lift me off the ground where I couldn't get him, and trying to break through his arms made him bend me over with him still behind me. I'm not sure how long I was screaming and fighting, but then I heard tires screech and I figured it was the creepy van my parents told me to avoid as a kid coming to take me away. Nope. It was a Toyota Corolla full of local teenagers headed to the gas station before school. The teens jumped out and ran towards us, and the driver stayed in the vehicle. The guy who grabbed me took off, two of the kids chased him through the desert beyond the gas station on foot, and the driver and the other kid made sure I was alright.

I send these four boys Christmas and birthday cards every year. I'm sure if it wasn't for them I would've been kidnapped or killed. Josh, Austin, Mason, and James, thank you guys.

Kittyonthetitty

The world is terrifying, my dudes. I've been harassed by my fair share of strangers, and it's the reason why I'm super careful just was walking around my neighborhood.

Protect yourself, protect your kids, protect your friends. It's scary out there

Image by Karen Warfel from Pixabay

If you're looking for your soulmate, it can be hard to really gauge who is truly “the one", especially if they've had back luck in the past. Trust me, it took many attempts to figure my romantic life out before finding my husband. But when you know, you know--and once you do, everything just beautifully falls into place.

Anyone that has found their soulmate usually can pinpoint the moment they had this realization. Here are a few real-life stories.

DeepDarkSiege asked: How did you know you found the one?

Sometimes it’s truly the usually mundane things that lights up your romantic life. In the words of the musical Company, “it’s the little things you do together that make perfect relationships.”

​The true test of any relationship.

When I found myself enjoying the little things - just because I was doing them with her.

Grocery shopping, running errands, just the mundane stuff that makes up every day.

Puzzled_Penguin46

My husband will wander off in the grocery store and then peek around the corner of an aisle at me and say weird stuff like "hey lady" or "looking good" or just nonsensical screeching. Or he will come up and smack my butt and run off. It's so immature but I always crack a smile.

Potatotay

This is so important!

Peanut Butter Animation GIF by Jif Giphy

I realized that if I happened to be doing or experiencing something fun, I always wanted her around to share it with. That, and we argue well and don't hold grudges.

TheKingofOklahoma

I love the fact that me and my GF resolve arguments like mature adults and we never stay mad at each other.

Base4yoface

​You feel like an old shoe.

Everything feels effortless.

Comprehensive_Log239

This sums it up exactly. So many of my friends and family stay in failing relationships for so long. Everything is fraught with drama and disagreement.

On my 2nd date with my now wife I told her 'You feel like an old shoe.' Comfortable and familiar, easy to get along with, happy to talk with for hours or enjoy hours of silence together. When the fights happen they are brief and uncontentious, and there's no lingering bitterness. Also, she totally understood and accepted the romanticism of being called an Old Shoe.

Antiwittgenstein

Chemistry is one of the most important elements of a relationship (accidental pun there).

​There is always hope.

Initial chemistry. I was doing the on-line dating thing, and had been on a dozen+ dates of varying degrees of awkwardness and disaster. I was fed up with it.

I logged onto the dating site to delete my account and embrace the Billy-no-dates life, when this woman gave me a nudge. I was kind of blunt and said I was done with it all, and didn't want to go through another 2 to 3 weeks of on-line chat only to meet up and have nothing to talk about.

I said if she wanted to meet up and name the place fine. If she found that too forward and a red-flag then also fine. She said she'd also experienced similar problems and also wanted to skip straight to the IRL meet.

I am not that chatty. But we met up at about 2pm at a local pub. We were there until kicking-out at 11pm. It flew. I had a sore throat by the end of it.

A few weeks ago we celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary.

ExxInferis

So sweet.

couples love GIF Giphy

The chemistry between us was unreal, my wife said the first time she met me she had the overwhelming urge to hug me. 18 years later we're still awesome together.

She just always says as soon as she first saw me she knew we were meant to be together. We often read each others minds, I can heal her with my hands when she has pain and the sex even after 3 kids and 18 years together is still like being a pair of teenagers.

She's my best friend, my soul mate and my lover. I would love to be a millionaire then I could just spend every minute of every day with her forevermore. I'm blessed.

CleanGeologist6756

Sappy, but sweet.

I can fall asleep when he's cuddled with me. As someone that hasn't had the best relationships, it's the first time I've felt safe enough to just let myself be at rest. The first time I saw him (we were long distance for 6 months), my whole being felt at peace.

Yes it's sappy as heck, but honestly this is the first time feeling this way.

JaxAnGo

That’s how you know.

Meeting my spouse felt like seeing a loved one after they'd been gone on a long trip. I felt the same way when our child was born. No magical Disney moment, just 'oh, there you are. I've missed you and I'm glad you're back.'

Psnugbootybug

Not to mention the bigger gestures that truly blow you away as their partner.

Thrown into the deep end.​

Introduce Season 2 GIF by The Bold Type Giphy

I am extremely lucky, as my father and I are absolutely best buds. He was diagnosed with cancer and it quickly spread throughout his body. He has been slowly declining over time. I know I found the one when my then-boyfriend (now fiancé) came to meet my parents.

Low and behold they were throwing me a surprise party and he got introduced to 30 family members. He was thrown into the deep end! He was kind and respectful to everyone. But what really took the cake was he sat down and talked to my otherwise very gruff, but long-winded dad. He talked to him for 2 hours, about life, love, my dad's experiences and I saw my dad give a few loud long laughs. It was rare those days.

He's remained close with my father as he nears the end and his constant effort to create memories and bring my dad joy speaks so much about who he is as a person.

We are getting married next week and I couldn't have found a more goofy, kind, loving and respectful man.

Lolabunnybutderp

What an amazing person.

I knew she was the one when my best friend who was a father figure went to the hospital and his organs were failing. They gave him 2 days to live and it all happened to fast that I called her and said we'd have to cancel our dinner plans with her mom (I was crying on the phone explaining why) all she said was "which hospital" and I told her the location.

I got there before her and held my dads hand. This diamond of a woman comes in with a chimichanga and large Fanta orange soda, no ice (my favorite) she sits right next to me and feeds me as I am holding my dying friend's hand crying hysterically. While he was loaded up on morphine she made a smart ass crack to me and actually made him chuckle. It was a half chuckles but he heard her! I will marry this woman. Mark my words.

JewishWolf26

A good partner always does this.

Knowing this person passively inspired me to be a better person, try harder in my efforts, and take risks to push myself as well as enjoy my life. I realized they were "the one" when they felt the same way.

Johoku

As for me, I knew my husband was the one when I realized I never got sick of his company. Usually, I get exhausted being around people, and I need a break. I never have with him--he's just such a delight to be around.

And if you haven't found the one and this article is making you sad, don't lose hope. Everyone's timeline is different, and you never know when you will meet your soulmate. Don't lose hope--it'll come when you least expect it

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