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People Explain Which Real-Life Serial Killer Freaked Them Out The Most

People Explain Which Real-Life Serial Killer Freaked Them Out The Most

Like most people, I've gone through periods reading all sorts of morbid stuff, including about serial killers. A few months back I watched Joe Berlinger's The Ted Bundy Tapes. While that docuseries didn't actually tell me anything new, it was fairly well constructed in its retelling of Bundy's career of heinous murders and other crimes. Afterward, I watched his dramatization (Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile) and felt similarly sick to my stomach. Next up on my (re)reading list: I'll Be Gone in the Dark, about the Night Stalker, otherwise known as the Golden State Killer (who was recently sentenced to life in prison).

After Redditor NickyEye asked the online community, "Which real life serial killer frightened/disturbed you the most?" people weighed in with their opinions.

Warning: Sensitive content ahead.

The Railway Killer

The Railway Killer in the late 90s. He rode trains throughout North America and many of his victims were in Texas, where I lived as a teenager. We had railroad tracks just behind our backyard and we frequently saw people riding in open/empty cars. When it became apparent a serial killer was riding on trains in Texas, my parents got the house alarm fixed and then monitored, and my dad slept with a gun near his bed.


Robert Hansen

Robert Hansen. Champion hunter in Alaska who would kidnap sex workers, fly them into the wilderness, and then hunt them for sport.


Fred and Rose West

I just read about Fred and Rose West, a married couple in the UK who collectively were among the most prolific serial killers in modern UK history. It is a grim tale of incest and prostitution and brutal murders and dismemberment of family members and random strangers, some of whom they buried in the garden behind their house. It's a fascinating yet horrific story.


The Toolbox Killers

Toolbox Killers. The transcript of the tape of Shirley Ledford's torture was one of the most terrifying things I've read. Some sick f****.


The Freeway Killer

William Bonin aka The Freeway Killer killed my childhood friend in 1980. He was 16. I was 15 at the time and that is too young an age to wrap your head around having a friend be the victim of a serial killer. It changed me.


Israel Keyes

Israel Keyes, serial killer, necrophiliac. He was raised in a militant Fundamentalist Christian household, joined the military, then came back to the US and killed at least 11 people all over the country. He went to extraordinary lengths to not be caught by choosing victims at random, killing far from his home. He would hide "kill kits" and return years later when he was ready to kill someone in that area.


Mr. Cruel

Mr Cruel (Unsolved). He is an Australian serial assaulter who abducted and assaulted three girls and is the prime suspect of the abduction and murder of another young girl. After assaulting his victims he bathed them carefully to get rid of evidence, one victim described it as "like a mother washing a baby." In one case, he took a second set of clothes from the girl's home to dress her before he let her go. This case makes me feel so uneasy.


Dean Corll.

Dean Corll. I almost puked when reading about the methods of torture he used on little boys. He was such an a*shole that his teenage accomplice was the one that killed him, which revealed his 28+ murders to the public. There is a haunting photo of an unidentified victim that was found in his accomplices property years after they got busted. Nobody has any clue who the kid is but the image of distress on his face and the toolbox full of torture tools next to him have forever been burned into my mind.


Karla Homolka and Paul Bernardo

I'd say Karla Holmoka and Paul Bernardo just because they were killing people in my hometown. I live like 2 minutes away from Karla's childhood home.


Dennis Nilsen

There's recently been a series in the UK on serial killer Dennis (Des) Nilsen. A Scottish killer who lived in London, and prowled bars and streets for young men to entice back to his flat. He killed many people, and was caught after a plumber found human bones and a mass of flesh in the drains. Turned out Des was dismembering his victims, and trying to flush the remains. In his previous flat he would burn and bury the remains, but his second flat was top floor of a 3 story building, so resorted to flushing.

The police found the remains of 3 men in bin bags in a wardrobe, as well as under a drawer in the bathroom, and a head in a large cooking pot on the stove.

One killing which stood out for me was a young guy Des found outside his property one day who was unwell. He helped the guy get to the hospital for treatment. Days later, the young man went back to thank Des for saving his life, stayed for a drink, and Des drugged, strangled, and dismembered him. This reminded me of Jeffrey Dahmer and the lad who escaped his flat to the police, who then delivered him back to Damher's flat.

People in the world astound me. There will never be peace whilst people like this exist.


Albert Fish

Albert Fish.

He kidnapped very young children, took them to an abandon house, exposed himself to them, and finally would eat them. And to make it all worse, he would write the parents of the children, in detail, how he cooked them and how they tasted. You can find his exact notes to the parents online as well.


David and Catherine Birnie

I came across David and Catherine Birnie of my own accord, and while the crimes were terrible and made me sick, it really disturbed me when I realised that they lived right down the street from my dad and his family.

I asked my dad about it and apparently he had actually met them. My two aunts who also lived there were within the age range of the women they killed as well, so it's crazy to think they could have possibly been targeted if they were unlucky.


Ian Brady and Myra Hindley

Ian Brady and Myra Hindley. Normal seeming young couple from Greater Manchester in the 1960s.

They abducted children, raped and tortured them, before burying them on the desolate moors nearby.

Pauline Reade, John Kilbride, Keith Bennett and Lesley-Anne Downey were buried on those moors. Keith was never found.

Their final victim, Edward Evans, was killed in their home and the body was still there when the police caught them.

This case still affects people in the area today. I'm from Greater Manchester, and everyone knows what happened to those children. Everyone knows Myra's infamous mugshot with her dead eyes, and Ian's smug refusal to reveal any information even on his deathbed. Kids in the 70s were told to behave or Myra Hindley would come and take them away.

My nan grew up in Greater Manchester at the time, and she described how her mother was reading about children disappearing and was scared to let her out of the house on her own. My extremely peaceful pacifist grandad reckons they should have released the murderers in Manchester, and let the people at them.

Keith Bennett's mother died never knowing where her son was, and never having put him to rest, no grave to lay flowers at. She was buried with his glasses.


Luis Alfredo Garavito

Luis Alfredo Garavito from Colombia. In the interviews he comes off as the nice guy of your neighborhood, if it wasn't because he killed and raped 200+ kids, I'd think he's a good person.

There is no death penalty in Colombia, and he has so much charisma that he managed to convince a group of religious people that he was possesed when he did those things, now they visit him every now and then and he's allowed to go out of his jail to participate in the religious ritual. He also convinced the prison guards to allow him to have a cat.

Well... At least it's not like in Norway that the worst serial killer in the country has a TV and a Playstation 4. (In Norway criminals literally live like a normal person, just isolated, and get released in less than 20 years no matter the crime).


Jeffrey Dahmer

Jeffrey Dahmer because at one time he worked at a blood bank and I used to donate blood there. He also lived not too far away from the campus at Marquette University.


Robert Pickton

Robert Pickton. I lived in the area he took his victims and murdered them while he was actively doing so. I'm not saying I'm his type but that's not comforting. We had driven close to his farm on a few occasions.


John Wayne Gacy

John Wayne Gacy Jr. He used to dress up as a clown to attract children and then kill them. I despite the thought of being with a clown, let alone being killed by one.


"The Family"

Without a doubt, the "Family" murders in Australia. I'm incredibly sanguine and desensitized to most horror, but something about the grotesqueness of that case makes my skin crawl.


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People Explain Which Dating Red Flags Instantly Signal A Breakup

"Reddit user Shinfekta asked: 'What red flag is an instant break up reason for you?'"

Picture of a pink heart tearing in two, hung off a red and white string, set against a black background
Kelly Sikkema/Unsplash

When you're in a relationship, it's important to stay alert.

Yes, you of course want to give in to love.

But when you start seeing red flags, be vigilant.

You're gut always knows more than you give it credit for.

Sometimes those flags are a sign that it's time to jump ship.

if you see them... run.

Redditor Shinfekta wanted to compare notes on why people would immediately end a relationship, so they asked:

"What red flag is an instant break up reason for you?"

The signs are always there, but I tend to put on blinders.

I need to do better.

A Big Deal

Illustration Text GIF by Jacqueline Jing LinGiphy

"Someone that casually says they've cheated. There's no way around that for me."


"Or worse when they treat cheating as somehow noble."


Hear Me!

"Wanting and demanding my attention but not reciprocating whatsoever."


"My ex. She would get pissed when she would talk to me about something while I was working and I wasn’t giving her my full attention. But every time I wanted to tell her something while she was doing nothing, she would get 'ADHD distracted' and completely ignore me or interrupt me to say something completely irrelevant."


"I had a friend like this! he literally completely ignored me for 6 months and then blew up at me for not responding to him within an hour. Very strange."



"Never admitting a mistake."


"I know a total hottie that is notoriously known for not being able to admit he’s wrong, sucks because he’s a gem outside of this. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a fair and responsible person in general… but he 100% can’t admit he was wrong in banter or a light argument even when he realizes he realizes he’s wrong hahaha lost confidence in him ASAP."


"This is a big one, even when these types of people apologize they still pass the blame. 'I'm sorry for my behavior but you made me really angry.'"


Never Again

"Unmanaged mental illness. Never again."


"I was with a girl that had that and I helped her through all of it and it was so hard to deal with it all but somehow I managed but when she felt better she just left me for her best friend’s ex and I was left with all that trauma because I loved her with all my heart and soul but she was just using me to feel better… and when she broke up with her best friend’s ex she came crawling back begging me to be with her again but it was too late.. the damage has already been done and I can’t do that again even though I still love her but I can’t tell her that... sorry for venting."



Sad Sponge Bob GIF by SpongeBob SquarePantsGiphy

"If someone makes you feel alone, that you don't matter, or if you are a second choice on most of the occasions, you need to leave."


Always know when to acknowledge your feelings.

And know when to depart.


Andre Leon Talley Manners GIF by GIPHY NewsGiphy

"How they treat animals, children, elderly, handicapped, and service workers."


"A wise man once said: judge a person not by how they treat their equals, but by how they treat their inferiors."


Just Kidding

"Being mean as their 'thing' or 'just a joke.'"


"'I'm just sassy!'" No, you're a bi*ch."


"I’m going to be honest, with certain friends I am absolutely ruthlessly mean, to the point that people are actually concerned it’s just bullying."

"However with strangers, I’m nothing like that. And the friends that I am meant to, they do the exact same thing back to me. We also know that if we need each other, then the meanness is dropped instantly, and it’s nothing but support and love."



"Zero accountability for anything. Everything they do is absolutely justifiable because, well, they mean well."


"Yeah, I was looking for this answer! And it’s true outside of romantic relationships also! I had to end a friendship over this exact behavior- it was never her fault, always the victim, and her hurtful behavior shouldn’t be addressed because she 'meant well…' but my feelings are still hurt so why don’t I matter?!"


"This. Can't stand people who always play the victim or blame everyone else and never take accountability for what they do."



"This one may take a while, but I would break up if I notice them creeping over personal boundaries, and not stopping when I tell them about it."

"People cross each others' boundaries all the time. I'm happy to give the benefit of the doubt until it becomes apparent that they have no intention to respect me."

"For example, if I don't like tickles or being startled, don't do that. It's not about the tickling, it's about them respecting me. And if there's no respect, there's no relationship."


Talk to Me

Sarah Jessica Parker Hbo GIF by DivorceGiphy

"If I'm hearing about a problem in our relationship from someone else rather than the partner. It shows huge trust issues."

"I've seen three divorces in my life, and they all were the result of the girl venting to her mother and her friends about issues she should have discussed with her husband."


Communication is key.

If you're not talking to you're partner, why are they you're partner?

Michael Jerrard on Unsplash

People accumulate facts throughout life on a wide variety of subjects.

Some are mundane while others are weird, wild or wonderful.

One subject a lot of people focus on is animals. Most people have a favorite animal that fascinates them that they want to know all about.

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Content Warning: Mental Health, Suicide, Domestic Violence

We all know that we technically can't make anyone else do anything, and we certainly can't "fix" other people. Other people will only change or do something if they choose to; the only person we can really control is ourselves.

But some people really love to try, often to hilarious and terrible results.

Already cringing, Redditor Dapper_Algae6280 asked:

"People who entered a relationship thinking 'I can fix them,' how did that go?"

Time for an Upgrade

"There is a weird thing that happens when you 'fix' someone. They tend to think if you liked them broken, then they deserve better than you now that they are better than they were."

- TheRealLifePotato

"As horrible as it sounds, to have a happy, emotionally healthy relationship you need two happy, emotionally healthy people. If you want to be in that sort of relationship, you need to fix yourself first."

- inactiveuser247

"This right here. After three sh*tty relationships in a row, I realized this is a me problem. I took a few years off from dating to reflect and really learn to see red flags and understand myself so I wouldn't make that mistake again."

- MikoSkyns

No More Spark

"My now ex had PTSD, depression, and a variety of other issues she claimed. After two and a half years of dating (being my first and only relationship), she became more social, less suicidal, and overall happier as a person."

"She decided to cheat on me with someone else due to 'lack of communication' and us 'no longer having a spark". The irony."

"For context, we were 17 at the time, in high school, and I worked full-time hours with initiatives to hang out, which were refused. Red flags everywhere."

- elteragxo

"Your situation is eerily similar to mine, what the f**k?"

"I met a girl with mental and emotional issues and decided to fix them through a healthy relationship. She recovered and found someone else because 'the spark was gone.'"

- Aimlessdrifter8778

Misery Loves Company

"Now we are both broken."

- Brave-Butterscotch76

"The same thing happened to my sister-in-law. She married a very negative and miserable guy while saying 'he will get better' or 'we’re working on it,' and now she’s a very negative and miserable person."

- Moreofyoulessofme

Getting to Watch a Partner Grow

"At first we were only f**king. I don't know if I ever thought I could fix her, but I did fall in love with this beautiful lady with severe anxiety, depression, and trust issues after being in a domestically violent relationship."

"We were f**k buddies for about six months and I got a glimpse of her issues but I still went ahead and asked her to be my girlfriend The heart wants what it wants."

"We dated for a year and a half (two years since meeting), and I actually got to see her at her worst a few times, but I was finally able to get her therapy with a great psychiatrist and treatment, this is when I asked her to move in with me. We've been living together for six years."

"Four years ago, she had the worst breakdown I've seen. She went full-on paranoid, wall-scratching nervous, she was even doubting me and my motives to be there. It was a very difficult week, and she left the house and went to her mom's house in the middle of the night."

"Eventually, her therapist was able to get a hold of her and get her back to her senses. Her doctor then suggested that I also should go to a counselor or at the very least we should do couples therapy so we had strong bases for our relationship and we did."

"I now look back and won't change her for anything in the world, she has grown so much, and she glows right now. I now see her smile and it's glorious. She's achieved a great position too and it's amazing just to see how much happier she looks."

- Spiritual-Narwhal666

Not a Match

"I fixed what I wanted to fix, but that still didn't make us right for each other. In the end, I think she's in a much happier place than she could have been, so I think it was worth the time invested."

"We were wrong for each other, but at least we both came out better positioned to receive the happiness that would come to us later."

- MrWeb20

In Their Nature

"A couple of months into the relationship, I fixed him."

"After some irritation, he stopped peeing on the carpet. Now, my cat still brings mice, but I guess, that's just his nature."

- mobileJay77

The Importance of Boundaries

"I don't know if I would say that I 'fixed' her (and I wasn’t trying to), but I definitely taught my last ex the importance of being able to set boundaries and to stop going out of her way to please people who consistently hurt her."

"Eventually this would lead to us breaking up, but I have no regrets. I have issues of my own that were wearing her down and she did what she had to. Same rules apply. We’re both better off because of it."

- TylerTexas10

Happily Ever After

"She fixed herself and I fixed myself with each other's support, and we are living happily ever after, it seems, with ongoing work on ourselves and our relationship."

- DonPronote

An Uncommon Ending

"I didn’t fix them. But I tried my hardest to be patient and supportive while they fixed themself. Sometimes I was better at support than other times. Sometimes they were better at fixing than other times."

"It ended up being worth the patience. Things have been great with us for years now. I know this isn’t the normal outcome though, and I feel incredibly lucky."

- I_Invented_Frysauce

A Little Help from Our Friends

"Usually I'm the one people try to fix.. I think the repeated attempts definitely helped me. Now my current partner gets to enjoy the previous hard work."

"...I think I just got tired of hurting the people who love me and fixed myself, though."

- addrien

All Their Idea

"You can't fix anyone. You can only fix yourself, but if you really want to try and fix someone, you have to make it seem like it's their idea."

- BuhrZap

A Helping Hand

"I don't think you can fix anyone. You can only help them fix themselves, which is very different."

"If someone is actively trying to fix themselves, and you can actually be the person to support them through it, then it can work, but it could also not work."

"I do think there should be a distinction between the two. I mean, trying to fix someone is a bad idea, but if you like someone and are willing to support them in their journey to fix themselves, it's probably not the worst idea in the world."

- brooksie1131

Lesson Learned

"It went so well that they managed to cure me of the desire to 'fix' anybody."

"I’ll toss you a life preserver if you’re trying to save yourself. But I’m not jumping in the water with anyone so they can drown me on their way out."

"People who need to hit rock bottom in order to better themselves will use you to soften their landing if you let them."

- GlobalPermit5428

Best Friends Forever

"It went well but it didn’t work out."

"So we kind of fixed each other we were both at very weird points in our lives and we only dated for about one and a half years. We didn’t need a romantic partner but we did need a friend in each other."

"We’re both in better places now and the best of friends. We both want each other to be part of our lives just not as lovers."

"All and all, I say we got the best outcomes in our lives."


So Worth the Investment

"He was an Uber driver with only a high school diploma."

"I married him anyways and bankrolled his education because he was fun as f**k to be around, was the smartest person I’ve ever met, and loves me like I’m the only woman on Earth."

"Now, he’s a computer engineer and we are landlords together and have bought investment properties. We are very happy together."

"Partners work together to create success. I think selfish people ask, 'what’s in it for me?' Marriage is about selflessness."

"I’m glad I sacrificed for his education. His mind would be wasted otherwise and he’s a genius."

- BabyElephantWalks

In most of these cases, the situation went poorly after a Redditor tried to change someone, and for good reason. If that person isn't ready or doesn't want to be fixed, it's only going to damage the relationship.

There's also something to be said about unconditional love. If you don't want to date the person exactly as who they are right now, why are you even trying to date them?

If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988.

To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at

Guy at the gym
Anastase Maragos/Unsplash

Tough guys put on a facade that indicates to others that they always know what's going on.

But their confidence doesn't always match their intellect, which is probably why they cover their insecurities by walking around and trying to show everyone who's really the boss.

If that's the case, they should keep their mouths shut because not everything that comes out of their mouth needs to be heard.

Yet, it can be amusing to everyone else.

Curious to hear examples of these, Redditor PrototypeShadowBlitz asked:

"Reddit, what is the stupidest thing you've heard from the 'alpha male' community?"

You might find these guys at a bar.

The Dude Must Be Hungry

"Had a run in once with a group of young lads about something in a bar and one of them said we are top of the food chain bro and you will be the prey."

– insertitherenow

"'Whatever, mall ninja" -proper response."

– TheEighthLord

If The Shoe Fits

"That they were an alpha male."

– I_Have_A_Name37654

"The use of 'Alpha Male,' unironically is every indication that you're dealing with a child's understanding of manhood."

– 88Dubs

Brat Pack

"Me and my bros are all alpha males."

– SonOfDadOfSam

"I was skiing one time and rode the lift with a guy that said, 'I don't feel no pain. I live with 5 roommates and none of us feel any pain.' Okay, bud. That's a really interesting coincidence."

– NicPizzaLatte

They sure thrive on making sexist comments.

Contagious Femininity

"A coworker said, 'I don't spend too much time with my girlfriend because I'll become too feminine.'"

– Lazy_Natural6154


– aliebabadegrote

Sexist Categorization

"I have been called a beta for saying that my wife makes more money than I do. She works in a more lucrative field and is more educated than I am, so it makes perfect sense that she makes more than I do."

"So I came back, and this post has really blown up. There's just a few things I want to clarify."

"1- I have only ever been called a beta online."

"2- I work full-time in project management. I have a master's degree. I have a 6 figure salary."

"3- My wife has a PhD and works in finance. She also has a 6 figure salary, it's just a higher salary than my own."

"4- I'm sorry to anyone who might feel as though my original post misled them."

– ExaminationDouble240

It's Teamwork

"A real man would be proud of his wife for achieving success, and not fall for that sort of insecure bullsh*t."

"It's not a contest, that's the real joke here. Good on you for seeing the big picture."

– Mrbeardoesthethings

Do these roles about parenting sound familiar?

Childish Things Are Too Girly

"Real men don't take their kids trick or treating is one that I heard recently."

– constructionguy89

"Related. Guys who brag about not changing diapers, not playing 'girly' games, etc. Essentially guys who brag that their only contribution to fatherhood is money and masculine things like fishing or football. Even then some of them brag about not paying a lot of child support to prove they didn't let the system take advantage of them."

"I can't imagine a life so empty my only accomplishment worth bragging about was being a terrible parent."

– Green7000

This Woman's Work

"I was told that taking care of my kids is woman's work. Apparently it's concerning that I try to spend so much of my free time with them. Oddly enough the meatheads at my grappling club think it's sweet I occasionally have my daughters' hair clips on and nails painted."

– MrFunktasticc

People discussed rules in the bedroom.

Never Submissive

"That a man is turned off when their wife/girlfriend seduces them, because if she wants sex and shows it she is a sl*t, also making the man the submissive one…"

– kamalaophelia

Stifling Emotions

"Not the whole community, but was cuddling with a guy once and could tell he was trying not to get emotional over something that was bothering him. He said, quite literally, 'it's not alpha male behaviour.' I told him that I liked that he showed emotions sometimes, and he looked disgusted by the fact that I pointed it out."

– LambLifts

In high school, a classmate who was on the football team said I was a "sissy" for listening to classical music.

The other classmates laughed at me, which was hardly surprising since all of the guys on our unbeatable football team were considered stars on campus.

This kind of mockery was a typical day for me.

I can laugh at their idiotic comments now but back then, I don't know why I ever let them get under my skin.