Trust yourself[rebelmouse-image 18354272 is_animated_gif=
If you think you are, you are. I believe there are different kinds of love and love goes through different stages. That first stage...where you can't stop thinking about the person and it takes away your appetite and makes you feel tingly and a little aroused when that memory of that one passionate kiss you shared recently, and the world looks beautiful simply because that person is in it, and you feel like you could survive on the streets with nothing as long as that person was by your side...I think that's the first stage of love. For me, I couldn't get to the next stages of love without going through that stage. After that stage is when love turns from something beautiful and simple to something you have to work at, something you have to compromise for. But that work brings you so much pleasure because you know you're working on building something together.
A lot of people don't think that first infatuation stage is really love. I don't know why. I look back on the people I was infatuated with and I can still recognize that I was in love. There's some kind of stigma over falling in love too quickly or being flippant with the word because it loses meaning or something. But I disagree. Love is the one thing that you can never run out of. It's a natural, never-ending resource. Like, when you have a child, your ability to love grows beyond what you thought possible--like that end scene in the The Grinch. And when you have a second child you worry that you don't have enough room to love the second child as much as the first, but then your heart grows again and you're overflowing with love. And then you realize that the love you have for your children is different than the love you have for your partner. And that's different than the love you have for your parents. And it's different than the love you have for avocados or cookies & cream ice cream.
Love is the one resource the world can never run out of, but it's the one resource that we're the most stingy with. Go ahead and be in love.
It's not about me, it's about you[rebelmouse-image 18354273 is_animated_gif=
You're in love when you actually care about how the other person feels, not how they make you feel. You're in love when you are willing to make sacrifices for that person's well-being and happiness because you care about them.
For those who fear commitment, this might be reassuring[rebelmouse-image 18354274 is_animated_gif=
I asked my dad this when I was dating my first girlfriend. [He said,] "You know you are in love when you can no longer imagine living your life without this person, and the idea of spending the rest of it with them is inviting, not terrifying."
It's not all fun and games[rebelmouse-image 18354275 is_animated_gif=
This probably sounds trite, but "love" is work. How hard you're willing or want to work on a relationship at it's worst is a good indication of if you're in love vs just infatuated with someone. Infatuation dies when things get hard, but love will want to keep working to persevere (oh man, this does sound trite...but it's true). Stick with me here, despite sounding like a self help book:
Being in love is being selfless, patient, and basically looking at the worst of someone along with the best and going "yep....that's for me." Infatuation feels a lot like love, especially with how media plays it out. Idealization and thinking someone is "perfect" isn't love. If you have someone who you can be 100% yourself around, and they have the freedom to do the same, you're getting closer. If you find your happiness in wanting to make the other person happy, it's a fairly good indication you really are in love. It's really mostly about wanting to put the other person first.
A simple answer[rebelmouse-image 18354276 is_animated_gif=
For me it was a quiet inner peace. A feeling that life would be life with her and something far more insignificant without. Just my 2 cents after 9 years.
Put those gloves on and get to work[rebelmouse-image 18354277 is_animated_gif=
"Love" doesn't really exist, at least in my estimation. It is an abstract notion. Relationships take work, and this idea of "true love" takes away from that, sometimes.
If you find someone attractive, compatible, and you relate and communicate well together whether times are good or bad, that is worth working on. After years, if you are diligent, you will just be ... happy with that person, loyal to them, and glad to be with them. That is probably "love."
If you don't work on the relationship, it WILL fail. And when it does, everything you have built while ignoring the relationship will totter, if not outright crumble.
I have my wonderful kids 4 days/week and am very happy with the relationship I am in now with a wonderful, compassionate woman, and am cordial enough with my ex, even though it was hard at first, having gone from a marriage to her leaving for someone else, blackmailing me out of $40k by scaring me that I couldn't have joint custody of the kids (I didn't know better and thought she could win that one; turns out she couldn't have, but whatever), and just being her narcissistic self.
She went from a wife to an enemy in just a matter of weeks. And I thought we were in love. Turns out she never loved me, by her own admission, 12 years after a relationship together. But we didn't work on the relationship, we worked on the kids, etc. And that was the downfall.
Love, whatever that is, doesn't sustain a relationship, elbow grease does.
It's not just about being "in" love[rebelmouse-image 18347584 is_animated_gif=
Being in love is breathlessness, it is excitement, it is the promulgation of promises of eternal passion... But that is not love. That is just being 'in love,' which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Those that truly love, have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches, they find that they are one tree and not two. Love is a temporary madness; it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides, you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because that is what love is.
It settles into a routine eventually[rebelmouse-image 18354279 is_animated_gif=
When all the new wears off, you don't have butterflies every time they call or text or you know you're going to see them, you're not getting all giddy about "firsts" in your relationship, you're no longer both on your best behavior, you can see their faults and let them see yours, you've survived a few disagreements, you're not boning every time you catch some alone time, the sex isn't mind-blowing every single time. And after all that, they're still your favorite person. You still do things for each other, for the simple joy of making them happy. The absence of the rose colored glasses of new lust hasn't been replaced with resentment, it has evolved into comfort, stability, and security with that person.
When two become one[rebelmouse-image 18354280 is_animated_gif=
I know I'm starting to fall in love when it's not just about the person being attractive or making me happy or anything like that, but rather I couldn't stand the thought to see her afraid or in pain. Like her pain becomes mine, if that makes sense.
This is true love[rebelmouse-image 18354281 is_animated_gif=
I was the "other man" for a while. A girl I worked with was flirting pretty heavily with me and we went out, things were going pretty well until she told me she had a boyfriend.
I didn't wanna be that guy so I said we couldn't see each other, she goes on to explain how they are gonna break up and he's not good to her and all this. Temptation gave in and we kept dating for a while until one day she tells me about how she had a bad night.
Apparently, she has this condition where it is really hard for her to poop and it causes her a lot of pain, the boyfriend helped her by pushing on her stomach while she pooped and it made her feel better somehow.
I was like whoa that boy loves you, I wouldn't do that. I mean like I'd ask from the other side of the door if you needed anything from the pharmacy but I'd never push on your stomach while you poop.
All of a sudden it got real to me that he loved her and I was a [jerk] for being the other man. You know you are in love when you will help them poop.
Basically you're just one soul in two bodies[rebelmouse-image 18354282 is_animated_gif=
When you start treating the other person like your "second-self." Their needs and wants are just as, if not more, important than your own.
To each their own[rebelmouse-image 18354283 is_animated_gif=
A girl at work asked a bunch of us guys a question like this once. I think the exact question was, "When did you know you were going to marry your wife?"
My answer was when I realized that my wife is the first woman I've dated that I actually missed when I wasn't with them, that was when I knew I wanted to be with her forever. And then, after about a year of that feeling not changing our going away, I asked her to marry me.
Another guy I work with said he saw his wife destroy the fattest loaded burger, down her Texas cheese fries, and then gulp down her beer before ordering another. That was his clue. I guess love comes to each of us differently.
Sometimes you just know[rebelmouse-image 18354284 is_animated_gif=
I just found out I was truly in love yesterday afternoon. My S/O and I had been at the beach cabana all day enjoying a gorgeous South Florida day when naturally a cat 1 hurricane decided to form in the distance. We decided to wait out the storm instead of driving through it so we took showers and settled in for the wait.
I was sitting on the beach chair having a beer and it starts to drizzle. S/O starts yelling, its raining lets go lets go. I'm all like wtf are you talking about. Suddenly he says "I want to kiss you in the rain, come on get up" .. I started laughing really hard because I thought he was [messing] with me. He was sooo serious and grabbed me, pulled me out into the rain and started kissing me. He goes, "I remember the first time we ever kissed. It was on the bus on the way home from grad night 10 years ago. I'll never forget that and I'll always kiss you, forever in rain or shine!" It was ridiculous and amazingly sweet and at that moment I knew I was totally in love and completely happy! Like finally truly in love when I felt that feeling.
I guess you'll know when something so silly and stupid happens that really reminds you that somewhere deep inside you can let go and let love in! (if that makes any sense at all)
It's more than just infatuation[rebelmouse-image 18354286 is_animated_gif=
I thought I was in love a lot, growing up. I'd feel in love with people after talking to them for a day. I fell in love with everybody; I loved every girl I met and half the boys.
But as I got older, and got hurt, and hurt people, I realized that love isn't that tingly feeling, or acting like an idiot, or wanting to be around someone all the time.
Love is a quiet trust, it is affection built out of familiarity. Love is really, really, really knowing someone -- and wanting a life that has them in it, not because of what they can do, but because of what they are.
It's actually hard to describe[rebelmouse-image 18354287 is_animated_gif=
I'd like to take a step back from the romanticist "love". That's a beautiful, passionate thing but those butterflies aren't really love and the feeling does fade over time. Love is a far deeper, permeating feeling. It comes with subtlety and time and experience, rather than as a burst of emotion or sudden infatuation. Which is why, sadly, I think a lot of the Western world has trouble understanding it fully. And to be honest, despite being with my fiance for 5 years, I couldn't tell you how to recognize it. It's so quiet, yet fills your heart with rich undertone, you really have to feel it to know.
Not to get Freudian, but imagine how you feel love toward family. They may infuriate you, you may not like parts of them, but you would hurt so deeply if they were gone, you cherish the time you've had, and you just... Love them. That's a lot like what romantic love is.
It's selflessness at its core[rebelmouse-image 18354288 is_animated_gif=
I dunno but I'll tell you about when I took my girlfriend out to eat for her birthday. It was a fondue place and I felt super out of my element. She loved every second of it. I hated the food. She loved it. I hated the drinks. She loved it. I hated the atmosphere. She loved it. But I loved every second of the evening because she did. I got such great joy from her experiencing her time that I had a great time too. I truly love this woman and me being happy because she was happy showed me.
Bursting with feelings![rebelmouse-image 18353227 is_animated_gif=
When after few minutes you were thinking about something else you suddenly remember about your SO and you get that feeling of a bottle of champagne popping in your chest and throat.
"Forgiveness. Respect. Compromise"[rebelmouse-image 18354290 is_animated_gif=
A lot of these answers describe infatuation. Love - you just kind of know. You're yourself. You don't use one of those fakey "boyfriend/girlfriend voices". When you're completely vulnerable, yet comfortable.
I've been married 10 years this coming December. I know how I show love and how my wife shows me love. Forgiveness. Respect. Compromise. Love is holding her hair when she pukes. Not going to bed angry - talking and working through troubles and arguments no matter how difficult the topic. That is key to "waking up happy". Not storming off in the middle of an argument. Accepting you're wrong. Undying respect, no matter what. You may be super mad at the other person for something entirely their fault; never lose respect. Forgiveness. Compromise. Doing things the other person enjoys because they enjoy it, and doing it with a smile on your face. Taking risks together. Accepting there are just some things the other person won't do. Compromise. Forgiveness. Respect.
Love is not chemical imbalances or physiological changes in your body. Love is the feeling and joy you get when doing things FOR the other person.
Got that little bounce in your step[rebelmouse-image 18354291 is_animated_gif=
When you get up and you instantly have a good feeling. This sign never fails.
Yep, that pretty much sums it up[rebelmouse-image 18354292 is_animated_gif=
I was in a class in college called "Human Sexuality". At one point we were talking about love vs. lust vs. obsession. The professor asks what the real difference between love and lust is. A bunch of different people have opinions, and we have a pretty good discussion for about 15-20 minutes.
It's starting to die down a bit, but before the professor can move on, this one kid in the back, who had not participated so far in the class, just says: "You sleep in the wet spot."
The Professor asks him for more details. "After sex. If you're in love you sleep in the wet spot." The class pretty much unanimously agreed his was the best answer.
Just being yourself[rebelmouse-image 18354294 is_animated_gif=
When a person can make your day by simply existing. How, when you're with them, time seems to stop. When you realize no one has ever made you feel happier, safer, or more complete.
It's not about winning the fight, it's getting through it together[rebelmouse-image 18354295 is_animated_gif=
Man, I found real love for the first time in my life last year. I'll try to explain it. I knew instantly that there was something special between us. Literally, the first time we went out, it was like we had been together for 10 years.
All I wanted to do was be around this person. It didn't matter what else I was doing, I simply couldn't get enough. You feel like if you could just stay with them forever, that life would be pretty great.
I'm a pretty argumentative person, but in love, I don't fight. Because I don't care if I win. I just want things to be exactly how they are. So I don't yell and I don't get angry. I might get hurt, but never angry.
It was very obvious I was in love because the honeymoon phase of the relationship never wore off. A year later and it's just as amazing if not more so than when we first started. I have no doubt that is will stay that way forever. She's just.. my other half. I don't want to ever date again. This is the one and I couldn't be happier. She might not be perfect but she's perfect for me.
Got me there ;)[rebelmouse-image 18354297 is_animated_gif=
When you start to ask questions like "How do you know when you're in love". Dead giveaway.
You don't know what you've got til it's gone[rebelmouse-image 18354299 is_animated_gif=
I don't think you really know until they are gone and not with you anymore. Does it pain you to think about that special someone having sex with someone else after you've broken up? Or, do you get a pit in your stomach/lump in your throat when someone mentions his or her name to you years after you've broken up?
That's love. That's when you really know.
I've had exes I didn't give a crap about and I feel normal when I see them, and then I've exes where it would be too painful to even be in the same room with them because the feelings are too intense even years later.
Note: Comments have been edited for clarity.
And there are just as many grievances for which we are not at all sorry.
Curious to hear about people's track record of their questionable behavior, Redditor NanoPKx asked:
"What is something bad you have done with no regrets?"
Is it petty theft or flat out stealing? You decide.
The Parting Gift
"'Forgetting' to bring back a company ipad after they forgot about me having it. Actually they never asked for it back so I still have it and use it."
"I stole a barn kitten while delivering packages for FedEx. He kept climbing my legs and getting into the van, sitting under the wheel when I tried to back out (it was a steep driveway, no way to swing the van around). I called the number on the package, looked the name up on facebook, called the local non-emergency to get contact info, all failed."
"So I took him. Now, if you're not from a rural environment, you might not understand that barn cats like that are 'no-man's-cats.' For all the owners know, he got sick or got got by a coyote. And he would have died, because when we got him to the vet he had a nasty upper resp infection and some other nasties."
"Now, one deformed nasal passage and the cutest snore later, we have a bonkers little orange cat with the heaviest penchant for snuggling I've ever seen (his name is Monty btw)."
"Edit: I forgot to pay my Cat Tax: https://imgur.com/a/HIXS4us"
"Edit Part 2: Monty loves the attention. Thank you for loving him as much as we do :3"
"MmmmMMMMRrrrrrrrrrrAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAW" -Montgomerey Valentine, 2022
The Dirty Treat
"A housemate of mine kept eating mine and my girlfriends food and even though I asked him to stop the only thing he would ever say is 'I thought it was mine' then keep eating it."
"Well I bought my girlfriend some ice cream she really enjoys and she put the half she didn’t finish back in the freezer. Well when she want to get the rest it was gone and it made me madder than I think it probably should have."
"The very next time I saw him and somehow keeping a straight apologetic face I told him how he accidentally ate our sex ice cream and that bits of it had been on our parts etc. I told him I felt guilty not to tell him and that I had to apologise for him to eat such a thing."
"I will never forget the face he made when I told him. A face of pure self disgust and shock to which all he had to say was 'I wish you never told me that' and proceeded to move out around a month later."
"Although he didn’t actually eat sex ice cream, like why the f'k would you put it back after use anyway? Sometimes I wonder if I went to far but in that moment I just did not care at all. He still doesn’t know it isn’t true and I’ll probably never see him again."
"F'k you Vitas buy your own food."
Vengeance is sweet.
"A drunk driver hit my parked car, left a huge dent in the front driver’s side door, and then drove away. I happened to be looking out the window at the time and saw the whole thing, including his plate number. Cops got there not long after and took my statement. After a couple days and a couple phone calls, I found out nothing was going to come of it because he was the son of the sheriff the next county over."
"Fast forward a couple months, I see his car parked behind a local bar within walking distance of my apartment. I got out my hunting knife and sliced all four of his tires, and made a couple trips around it destroying the paint job. Yellow Pontiac Sunfire, and I still remember the goddamn plate number even after almost 20 years."
For The People
"I was a GM for a retailer that was going out of business. During the liquidation I let my employees that worked until the end store product they wanted to buy in a closet I claimed I didn't have a key to. Oh the final days I sold them all the items they requested for 95% off. 70" tvs, ipads, gaming laptops whatever they requested."
"Years ago I worked for a wealthy dude who was married to someone semi-famous. He would waltz in every morning and talk about the fantastic dinner he had the night before, how he hung out with some other famous person or whatever else."
"He paid me peanuts. I had a hard time making ends meet."
"I was the office assistant and IT guy. So it comes time to get a new computer for one of the designers. I spec something out, and show it to him. It was a ripper of a machine for the time (early 2000s). But it wasn’t expensive enough for bossman."
"So I added a really high end graphics card. Boss was happy then. The card added nothing for the designer: they only did illustrator and photoshop."
"So I came in that weekend and swapped the graphics card for my aging one from home."
"No one ever knew. Or cared. And I got a new graphics card."
When times are tough, people had to do what it took to survive.
"In college I was so poor I would steal toilet paper from the supply closet in our major building."
Hungry College Buddy
"I stood watch for a college friend who was going hungry because he’d been disowned and his roommates had made living with him intolerable after he came out."
"I was loosely affiliated with an off campus program with local churches that gave free student dinners on Thursdays. We would go to church to eat, then bring dishes into the kitchen."
"Anyway, he would go in there and steal stuff like peanut butter, literal bread (not an allegory), granola bars etc. while I watched out for the pastor."
"Eventually we both got caught, the pastor for the college students got a bit mad because he was responsible for us while we were there to eat. And I think it was offensive on some level to steal from church. But then he saw what my friend was taking, and asked him if he had enough to eat. My friend shamefacedly said no, not usually."
“'Okay, fine. Put the food back, and come with me.' Took my friend grocery shopping instead, got him connected with the food pantry and community garden at church instead."
Based on these examples, people didn't twice about their actions in the heat of the moment.
Within reason, we all gotta somehow get by.
But do you think their actions deserve punishment?
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When a person sees someone they care about going through a struggle or crisis, their instinct is to uplift them with positive advice.
But sometimes, the wisdom imparted by friends isn't always helpful or relevant to the situation.
Curious to hear from strangers online who could do without specific knowledge, Redditor Saibotnl1 asked:
"What life advice can just f'k off?"
These Redditors have a problem with how certain people have on outlook on life.
Time To Rest
"Sleep when you’re dead."
"Cool, but you’re going to be dead a lot sooner."
"People have it so much worse than you so don’t be sad!"
"To that I like to say, 'people have it so much better than you so don't be happy!'"
Your Life Path
"Almost anything relating to what age you must be in order to buy a house, have children, marry, have a profession, or do anything else. Seriously, everyone's life is different from everyone else's. Make your life the way you want it to be. If you so desire. Up to you."
On The Contrary
“Cheaters never prosper”
"Yes, they f'king do."
People can get out of any situation they find displeasing.
But others feel people should just "stick it out."
"Just ignore bullys or get someone else to handle it for you. I have never seen this work, only makes it worse. The only effective way I've seen to deal with them is by not making yourself an easy target and make them scared to f'k with you again. If going psycho on their a** is the only thing they'll respond to that's their fault. Also want to add in schools they will punish you for self defense but that punishment is only sitting around a few hours in detention or sitting around at home with a suspension. The punishment is temporary boredom, it's absolutely nothing compared to being bullied and when it's over the important message will still stand that you will not tolerate being a victim."
– User Delted
Remain to be Miserable
"Stick it out"
"Whether that's sh**ty jobs, shi**y relationships, shi**y living situations..."
"By all means don't just give up on things when you face challenges, but if something feels wrong or is wrecking your peace then take some control and change it if you can!"
"Easy for you to say," might be an auto-response to these suggestions for many people.
Invitation For Recklesslessness
"Live like everyday was your last"
Yall know what people do when they learn they have a single day left to live?"
A Possible Consequence
"I did that as a teenager and ended up homeless and addicted to heroin. Didn’t pan out for me too well."
"19 years sober though today."
A Practical Approach
"If I knew with certainty that I had one day left, I'd double-check all my financials, my will, and my insurance policies, make sure my wife had all of my passwords and knew where all the money was, spend the rest of the day with her and the kids, then call the medical examiner and ask to lie down on the gurney so that when I die they won't strain their back moving my remains out of my house."
Nose Stuck In A Book
"Work while they sleep. Study while they party"
"That's not a recipe for success, that's a recipe for a lot of white hairs, burnout syndrome and a stroke before your 40s..."
Doesn't Apply To Everyone
"Do what you love and money will follow"
"I love walking my dogs and grilling food for my friends but That sh*t doesn't pay the bills as well as my engineering degree!"
While people's intentions are good, they're better off keeping their two cents in their own pockets.
Not everyone likes to hear platitudes.
Sometimes, people just want to know they're not alone with their problems over listening to unlikely solutions that are nothing more than superficial pick-me-ups.
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Kids start going to school from the age of five, and for the most part, they spend more time at school than at home. Because of that, teachers can become very important figures in the lives of their students.
Some students don't have the best home lives. Some keep it to themselves, but others confide in their teachers.
Curious about various situations, Redditor Delicious_Mastodon83 asked:
"teachers of reddit what is the saddest thing you found out about a student?"
In Need of Parents
"Not a teacher but was a school-based therapist. Had a student (7 -8 y/o) I didn’t know knock on my office door and ask if I’d adopt her and “if you have room, my brother too, but if not, that’s ok, we can be split up. We’re split up now. And I don’t take up space. I just need a sleeping bag”. Broke my heart."
Heartbreaking, But Industrious
"My mom taught at a school in a bad neighborhood in Chicago in the mid 90’s. There was a second grader that would save his milk and ketchup packers from lunch for his mom so she had something to eat when she got home from work."
"Not a teacher but a parent with a 9 year old son. Every day I pack extra in my sons lunch because he tells me he has a friend that never has anything to eat. It's winter and my son came home and told me his friend was turning up with shorts and shirt and holes in his shoes. So I sent in a jumper and long pants for him to wear and some slightly used but good condition shoes. I have been up to the school recently and the teacher pulled me aside and thanked me profusely for helping this child. Apparently teachers are not allowed to aid kids they teach here in Australia and they have already reported the issue 3 times to child welfare without results so I was the only one helping this child. The teacher told me before I started sending in more food and clothes, this child would steal others food from their lunches and look through the bins because he was so hungry. They doubt he gets fed at home. So now I make sure to always send an extra lunch and some school clothes/supplies when I can. I can only hope child welfare eventually does something but it breaks my heart."
Amazing Big Sister
"It was right after winter break and before class started I was just talking with some students and asked if they got anything fun for the holidays. One girl said on no, I don’t ever get presents, my mom is a drug addict. But I went out and got some stuff for my little sister so that she can have a real Christmas."
"She just said it so matter-of-fact. She was so used to being the parent to her little sister that she didn’t even care about her own childhood. It totally broke my heart."
The Importance Of Human Affection
"Second hand story from my mom, elementary teacher for 30ish years. She had a hug or a handshake out the door policy, just some small contact and a proper goodbye, and had this young boy who always picked the hug. She wondered why he always went for it, most kids would go back and forth depending on their mood that day, so she asked him why he was always so excited for the end of day hug? His answer, "It's the only one I ever get.""
Coming Out The Other Side
"Two teenage boys (16/14) with learning disabilities were on my caseload, they never missed school but often ditched class. They were homeless mid-year after they went home from school to find the locks changed, their Mom had abandoned them for a new boyfriend. She didn't leave an address for them to find her."
"*Edit: both eventually dropped out, however a couple of years later the younger brother came back to visit. He and his brother were both working construction, and his brother had gotten married, had a child, and was living with his wife’s family."
"The younger had roommates and was saving for a car. He told me it was a shame I didn’t have kids, because I would make a good Dad."
"People often persevere, even with the odds stacked against them."
"Not me but my daughter is a teacher, she has lots of stories but one that stands out for me is one of her kindergarten kids saying she was tired and her asking why, the little girl explained that she had been up all night with her mums newborn baby. She did this every night, fed her bottles and everything."
Luckily, He Was Resilient
"This year I had a 17 year old kid enroll at my school. He was sitting in my math class and I could tell he was struggling. After class I took some extra time to go over a concept with him. I asked him to read the question to me, and he sat there silently. He then looked at me and said “I’m not going to lie to you, I cannot read. I have no idea how to say these words""
"Turned out at age 17 he was illiterate and had been kept out of school by his very religious, controlling parents. Over the past few months he has worked very hard! Now he can finally read at an 8th grade level and he is STILL improving!!"
– User Deleted
A Heroic Teacher
"I worked in an inner city charter school. One of my students (`M10) had a sib (M8) in a lower grade. The mom was there every day in the beginning of the year encouraging them, helping them and generally being very supportive... until a CPS agent spoke to me asking about her behavior. After CPS left things went downhill. The boys showed up late to class even though they lived a half block away from school. When in school both boys were tired from sleeping in the car while their mom "went fishing". She also had two very young girls which she dragged around making the boys take care of them. One day the boys didn't show up and their teacher walked over to the house to find the mom had loaded up the fridge, paid the rent for the month and abandoned them. The teacher (a candidate for sainthood btw) took them in, adopted them and grew them up to be great men."
This is really heartbreaking stuff! Luckily, teachers aren't just another adult in your life; they can be your saving grace as well.
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TRIGGER WARNING: This article contains sensitive content about depression and mental health.
As the stigma around mental health lessens (however slowly), people are more forthcoming about the problems they are facing. One of the most common mental health issues is depression.
Depression can affect many different types of people. Factors such as gender, race, nationality, and even age have no bearing on whether someone suffers from depression or not.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), globally, "...an estimated 3.8% of the population affected, including 5.0% among adults and 5.7% among adults older than 60 years..."
Depression displays in certain patterns, such as mood changes, physical difficulties, and social isolation. However, depression manifests differently in different people and feels different to different people.
Reddit users divulged what depression felt like to them when Redditor iodineseaspray asked:
"What does depression feel like to you?"
Some of this is sure to sound familiar.
The Worst Kind Of Boredom
"Like being more bored than you could imagine but also not wanting to do anything at all, even breathe. So you want to do something, but you can't imagine anything that you would like to do so you're just sort of stuck."
"So you then spend literally hours staring at a blank wall hating yourself, your life, and everything around you. Well, as much hate as you can summon in the absolutely mentally numb state you find yourself sat in day after day."
Lack Of Motivation and Energy
"Complete lack of motivation."
"Ignoring people that I love, and who are trying to help."
"I feel it extra at work. Letting things slide until you either get into trouble or trying last minute to prevent it."
"Funny those times when I'm working to save my butt, the depression goes away and i feel super focused and motivated."
"I try to carry that energy over but no, it's rinse and repeat."
"Insecure about absolutely everything, no hope for the future, dissociation from society and not knowing how to “act” anymore, feeling like I’m not as good at the things I always thought I was good at or that the “talent is wasted on me”, only food cheers me up and sometimes even that doesn’t work"
Loss Of Creativity
"This. It's like some numb fuzziness you feel in your brain. It's the worst thing ever for an artist who just wants to create but your brain comes up dry with a dense fog that wants to just lie down for a few hours"
A Mental Inability To Breathe
"For me, it feels like I’m in a lake with a ball chain tied to my feet, desperately swimming up for air, the only problem is the chain isn’t long enough. I can only get an inch of my head out of the water to breath, and as soon as a high tide comes, the water just floods over me and I feel like I can’t breath again. I live like this, constantly feeling like I’m struggling to breathe, weighed down by my own mind. It’s a struggle and I can’t really describe it in any other way, I’m jealous of people who don’t worry about depression"
"Like suffocating under a heavy cloak"
"Like being crushed. Like if the air was crushing my muscles and bones and I can’t breathe because I’m being crushed…"
"Kinda like that."
"Scrolling thru your steam library. Thinking you want to play something, either not settling on anything or not wanting to put the effort into the game. Going back to the scrolling."
"It feels like you're forced to play a game of Monopoly (represents life) and your just rolling the dice to appease everyone but you genuinely don't care about where you go, where you land, what you pick up, what you pay, what you gain."
"You kind of just watch it happen without interest and while people are cheering or oh no-ing for you, you genuinely don't care. Everyone is a piece on this board that hardly matters and you feel like we're all just running in a circle over and over again and it's boring and disinteresting as hell."
"You lose all curiosity for everything and just let everything happen and pass by you. No motivation, hardly any love, hardly any care. Feels like the world is in black and white and your waiting for the game to end became it's so absolutely boring and disinteresting, but it never does."
"You come to resent the game and eventually hate it because it feels like you're being forced to play it and suffer it's consequences when you never asked to play it in the first place."
"That's what depression felt like for me. Since then I've been medicated and recieved therapy. I'm doing a lot better now and I don't feel this way anymore, thankfully."
A Relation To Fantasy
"You know that scene in the Lord of the Rings where Bilbo is describing to Galndalf what having the Ring all those years felt like? "I feel thin. Like too much jam spread over too much bread." That's honestly the best way I've seen to describe it."
"I always say the closest thing to compare it to is a dementor in harry potter. It sucks every ounce of happiness out of you until there is only darkness left."
"Side note: chocolate always helps"
Fear Of Lack Of Justification
"Like someone close to you died yesterday. Expect no one has, and nothing has happened to justify how you feel."
A Physical Pain
"Physical pain in my heart, will start crying just by attending to the physical sensation in my body."
"I've always described it as having a shadow fixed to your brain which fuels things like indecision and negativity. You can do things to temporarily help but you can't truly shift it. Previous normality is forgotten. But it's amazing how much you can mask it."
"I found I didn't realise how bad I was until I started to get better"
"For anyone suffering with depression. Please, please speak to someone. Best thing I ever did"
Depression isn't something you can just deal with or get over. Learning to cope is not easy. However, as Redditor DavosLostFingers pointed out, talking to someone can literally save your life.
If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression, contact the American Psychological Association by phone at 800.374.2721 or 202.336.5500.
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