People Explain How They Recovered From Their Biggest F*** Ups


How do you admit that you messed up in the first place?

That's the first step. Step one is already hard. And then there is the process of recovering from it.

So when you've taken the biggest misstep one could possibly take, how do you go back from where you came and get back out of it? Can you, or do you have to accept the new direction life is giving you?

u/eeehsj asked:

What was the biggest f***up of your life and how did you recover from it if you did?

Here were some of those answers.

Being Honest

After my medical discharge from the military, I spent nine years pretending I didn't have PTSD. After my second prison term, I dated a woman who encouraged me to tell the VA everything. Nowadays, I'm getting the treatment I need, I'm living a clean life, the VA is taking good care of me, my daughter will go to college on the VA's dime, the girlfriend is now my wife, and I don't wake up screaming anymore.

Oh, and I've earned a master's degree.


Killed a fellow soldier in an accident while on active duty. Stood trial, was acquitted. 20 years have passed. Have yet to forgive myself and no intention to. I work and am successful. Am married. Also pretty much hate myself for what happened and always will. Happiness comes in small moments when thoughts of that night do not prevail, but I quickly remember that I'm not entitled to it.

Don't get me wrong, I am not the victim. I'm the perp-- the leader whose failure to recognize risks cost a young man his life and robbed a family of their son and loved one. My justice lies in having to face me every day knowing what I did. My worst day is better than what I put his family through and I must always remember that. Otherwise, there is no justice. He and his family deserve justice.

More Than Numbers

I failed a bunch of classes and wasted $5000 of my parents' money in 1 semester of college. I slacked off, had too much fun gaming, and rarely went to classes. When I entered my exams, I had that surprised pikachu face. Failed them all that semester.

I always regret it, saying that I'll pay it off myself, but they still don't know and I'm not sure how to ever break it to them. I don't know how to make it up to them either other than working hard and earning at least something substantial so that the loans that exist won't overwhelm us. Wish me luck is all I can say, so that I can recover one day and make my parents actually proud instead of being a $5k disappointment.

No One Is Hiring

Got a degree in graphic design and now is it pretty useless. I have over 7 years of experience and know all of the adobe programs, coding, and printing and it sucks trying to find a job. I need to go back to school and get a different degree/skill.

I don't know how to recover from this but i am trying.

Changing For The Better

First four months of this year. Got fired from my part time job, barely finished undergrad, nearly financially ruined myself because I would get all my meals delivered and they weren't super healthy. Relationship with my roommates suffered because I wasn't cleaning. I got diagnosed with ADHD. Got on meds and for the first time felt like a real, functioning adult. I also found out about the "if you are 1% better than the day before, you are an exponentially better person at some point" quote. I'm doing well in law school (took a class over the summer), refocused on tutoring for money, worked on my financial impulsivity, and moved to a new neighborhood.

Ay, que paso

I drove a radio broadcast truck out of car dealership with the antenna up. The antenna hit the power lines. Antenna was cut by the heat. The power line was severed and fell to the ground causing a fire. Power was out for a square mile. I wasn't fired. I worked there for another couple of years. I even continued to do live ads for the car dealership lol.

Negatives To Positives

Flunked out of college due to partying too much. Partying turned into a DWI arrest and forced me to move back home with family where I was arrested two more times for a PI and another DWI. Around the third arrest, I was experiencing some health issues which, I assumed, was from my severe level of drinking but it turns out I had developed an autoimmune disease. After becoming diagnosed, I had to move in with my parents since I was so weak that I needed full-time caregivers. Fast forward to today and this illness has kept me sober for 5 years and in a healthier and stronger place both mentally and physically. It's strange how thinks work out.

One Mistake Follows You

Got expelled from high school my freshman year and now I'm a successful physician.

The expulsion came out of no where. I have an upper-middle class background, second generation American. I was always pretty good in school. Got good grades, never got in trouble. The worst prior to my expulsion was a "pink slip" in elementary school for running and jumping off of the playground. And I was terrified to tell my parents about that. I was expelled due to a threat to another individual. It wasn't supposed to come off as a threat, but it did and the school board was out to make an example. It turned my family pretty upside down for the next few years and was a pretty messed up time in my life. Luckily I was able to turn it around and did well with my life. Married, have a family, good friends, good career.

A Bumpy Road To Paradise

I dropped out of high school and got addicted to meth. I had a heart attack when I was 18, and decided I liked living enough to not do meth anymore.

When I was in my 20's I found a college that would accept me as a "mature student" as long as I passed an English and math test. I failed the math test the first time but they said I was "pretty close" and could try again! So I got into college, studied there for a year, used that to transfer to the college I wanted to go to.

Then I finished my diploma there, worked a year in the field and went back to university. I received my bachelor's degree, and took a few years off to be a stay at home mom to my two awesome kids.

Then my dream job just kind of fell in my lap, and I start on Monday!

Finally Got Home

I got really drunk one night while in a foreign country, fell asleep on the beach and woke up to my things stolen.

My phone, wallet, passport. Even my shoes. Gone. Just like that.

I stumbled back to the place I had been crashing and just sat, drunk and terrified, for the rest of the night.

When the sun came up the next morning, I borrowed some coins, went to the store and got myself a coffee, then headed straight for the nearest hostel. I explained my situation to the front desk and asked if they had a computer I could use. They eyed me suspiciously at first (barefoot, still covered in sand, looking like a mess) but let me use this old computer stashed away in the corner of the lobby.

Immediately, I notified my bank, stopped all my credit cards, and looked up the nearest U.S. embassy. I was lucky, it was in the same city as me. I walked over 10 miles and never felt as scared as I did coming to the embassy with no shoes and trying to get a new passport. They told me that since it had to be shipped from the States, I would have to wait 6-8 weeks to receive it. My bank refused to send cards overseas, too much fraud from the area I was in.

So I spent the next two months gathering bottles and cans on the beach and sides of the road, earning enough to get myself a new pair of shoes and some food. I made some friends (who graciously would let me crash occasionally), definitely think I made a couple enemies, and even resorted to stealing food from some market stalls. But after the 8 weeks were up, I headed back to the embassy, picked up my passport, and with the money I had from the recycling as well as small, one-time gigs, I managed to purchase a flight home.

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