What keeps us up at night? Often we are thinking about the goals we want to reach, reliving conversations of the day, and sometimes, in the way that happens after dark, dwelling on our biggest fears.
We hear a lot about the irrational or wild fears people have when in reality there are things in our everyday life that are just as, and sometimes more, terrifying.
Redditor camoman7053 wanted to know:
“Forget irrational fears, what's yours perfectly rational fear?"
A scary thought…
“Aneurysms. I've lost 2 relatives to it. I've briefly talked to someone who has survived and recovered from one and it sounds like you're better off to just die from it than try to recover.” damnthatriver18
It could happen so suddenly…
“Irresponsible drivers.” Acolyte_5
“Seriously. You can just be going along, minding your business, driving the speed limit and obeying traffic laws, and BAM, some reckless a**hole comes outta nowhere and ends your life. Completely out of your control. That is terrifying.” serious_iniquity
Don’t look down…scared jason paul GIF by Red BullGiphy
“Heights. Just trip and you die. I have to cross the highest bridge in my country to get to the store on my bicycle... only a small metal fence between me and the awful depths. I die on the inside every. single. time." DoctorWhoTheF*ck
The vegans will outlive us all.
“I'm afraid I will make poor health choices as a younger person that will decrease my quality of life in my late 50s-death.” TheMimesOfMoria
“Don't worry I made great life choices, got a few injuries I would have no way of preventing and now I'm mess too. My teeth are pretty okay tho.” ugh_as_iff
Poverty hits hard…
“Living in poverty or being homeless. They say that money can't buy you happiness. But it sure can buy you freedom.” MimikyuMimikyu
“Money is a proxy for resources. It is the food in your mouth, the clothes on your back, the roof over your head, and what you need to get a college education. Since money is a proxy for resources, and we need resources to live... well... it kind of IS important.”
“The whole ‘money isn't everything’ line is what business owners tell their under-paid employees. The shame is that we started telling it to ourselves.” TiredOfDebates
Spelunking anyone? Anyone?cave GIFGiphy
“Getting stuck in a small hole in a cave head-first with no way of moving your arms or legs and nobody nearby able to hear your cries for help." Altruistic-cry-3041
“I got stuck trying to exit a cave through a small hole for 15 minutes. Most terrifying part was realizing I could only breathe about half a breath and could just feel the walls stopping my chest from expanding. Was able to calm myself and wiggle out slowly ripping my jacket to shreds in the process. Gave me mild panic attacks for weeks after." hopscotchmcgee
A fear many have…
“What's more frightening is that eventually, as neurological deterioration progresses, you won't even realize what's wrong with you. You'll simply be confused, paranoid, and scared constantly.” SlenderByrd
“That I'll fail one day. That I might be fired, and won't be able to get another job. That maybe ends won't meet and I can't make them, or that an opportunity will be offered and I'll be too ignorant or stupid to take it. I just really, really want to be able to live life to the fullest instead of living in a run-down apartment with no job and empty cupboards.” LoserSkadoodle
Bad dreams and sleeplessness…
“Sleep. Almost every single night I have some kind of vivid dream that's not so pleasant, wouldn't call them full blown nightmares but I wake up so drained and it prevents me from having the battery charged and just being able to have the mindset to tackle the day..” harshreality35
“That I'll forever be left with no aspirations or real motivation.” Cool-Boy57
“There aren't any animals that scare me much. I've gotten mugged. Nearly fell to my death and was saved by a small pile of snow. Had to drive on top of a mountain filled with the most slippery mud I'd ever seen on a narrow path with a giant cliff right beside me. But none of these scare me as much as this right here. It's terrifying to think that it's entirely possible that I may never find a goal that will satisfy me and make me happy.” grimjack123
These are very real and valid fears that many users were able to relate to. It might feel like you’re alone in your worry but others are scared too.
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No joke, I will never forget the old Sock'em Boppers commercials. I am well past the age group that plays with these things but that theme song is often in my head. What can I say? I watched a ton of TV as a kid and saw that commercial a million times.
They're now known as Socker Boppers and it's just not the same. Remember that video jingle, "it's more fun than a pillow fight?" Those were the days. Alas, everything good must end.
There are a host of other commercials that have left an impression on people. These people shared their thoughts with us after Redditor No-Caterpillar4212 asked the online community,
"What's a commercial you'll never forget?"
"I still giggle..."
"I still giggle at the LifeAlert "I've fallen and I can't get up" commercials. They even have a newer batch of them out."
There's a criminal in my house!
"Mr. Owl, how many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop?"
The world may never know.
"I tried to collect..."
"Yo quiero Taco Bell!"
"I tried to collect all those stuffed Taco Bell dogs they did in promotion around this time. I had almost all of them, but never got my favourite one, with the military hat that says, "Viva gordita!""
I remember those! There were so many. I swear, I had at least one or two but they've now been lost to time.
"This is your brain."
"The "This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs" egg commercial."
Oh, but remember the old Rachel Leigh Cook commercial where she destroyed the entire kitchen and not just the egg?
"The dancing old man..."
"The dancing old man from the Six Flags commercials."
Now this one really takes me back.
The Venga bus is coming!!!
And everybody's jumping!!!
"That mid 2000s..."
"That mid 2000s Chef Boyardee commercial where the can follows the family and rolls home with them."
You mean the one where the can is clearly stalking the family and people are too shy to say otherwise?
At least that's how I like to play it out in my head.
"The Wilford Brimley..."
"The Wilford Brimley diabeetus commercial."
At this point, diabetes should just be called Wilford Brimley syndrome.
"The Budweiser Wassup Commercial refuses to exit my brain to this day."
WAZZZUUUUUPPP!? Any kids watching Scary Movie will not understand that reference in the movie sadly.
"Five eight eiiight, two-three hundred... ...Empiiiiire!"
Good choice. This one is always living rent-free inside my head.
"My bologna has a first name. It's O-s-c-a-r. My bologna has a second name. It's M-a-y-e-r. Oh, I love to eat it every day and if you ask my why, I'll say. Cuz Oscar Mayer has a way with b-o-l-o-g-n-a."
This commercial is likely singlehandedly responsible for teaching children how to spell "bologna."
Apologies if you now have relentless commercial jingles rattling inside your brain right now. You should have known we'd awake some long buried childhood memories!
Have some commercials you remember? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!
If you're not familiar with the phrase "you are what you eat," it is not a literal statement.
Instead, the line suggests that it is important to eat better quality foods in order to stay healthy and fit.
But the notion that we can go through a transformation of some sort based on our behavior or surroundings can still be a thing depending on certain discussions within context.
Curious to hear examples of what this might be, Redditor standardgenre45 asked:
"What’s something that people turn into their whole personality?"
We can lose sight of ourselves when heavily influenced by another individual or a group of people.
Influenced By Devotion
"Politicians they follow."
Era-Specific Like-Minded Individuals
"The generation they're born in."
We Like, We Follow
"‘Girl bosses’/MLM cult engagers"
"And social media."
People can take on the characteristics that apply to their environments.
"Here in the Netherlands people who live in Amsterdam base their personality on Amsterdam."
When In Colorado
"People move to Colorado and Colorado becomes their personality. They buy a jeep or Subaru and start wearing Chaco’s, and plaster Mountain Life all over everything they own."
Claiming Ownership Of The State
"Not only that, but 'Colorado native' is a whole thing too. I've met many people who have nothing to talk about except how bitter they are that people keep moving in and how much better it was when they were kids."
What The Canadian Said
"It’s that way for a lot of major cities around the world. Here in Canada each province’s capital city has a bunch of people basing their personality off of it."
The Thing About Major American Cities
"Lots of New Yorkers (City not state) guilty of this too. But it’s not just them. Los Angelinos, San Francisans, Chicago and DC are guilty too. Texans are probably the worst about it, especially the further they get away from Texas, then you’ve got people from Austin who are like the elitist Texans, they’re like the oddest mix of hippie and redneck. They often pride themselves on the hippie and denounce the redneck while still obviously being one."
Things having to do with money can be an obsession and really take over the essence of a person.
Living Work Or Work For A Living?
Value Of Conversation
"Or just money in general. I worked with a guy who only ever talked about what things were worth, mostly vehicles. What he was thinking about buying. How much he could sell something for. The trades he wanted to make. How much our customers made. What motorbike he bought before from a guy on the street we happened to be on and what it's worth. That's all. It was annoying as f'k. Any conversation at all, you could be talking about your grandma, and he immediately tries to change the subject to value. It was literally the only small talk he knew. The fact he was poor just made it sad."
Just Cut The Pricetag
"Omg my husband is kind of like this and as much as I love him, it's so frustrating. I'm just not all about money. We don't need to tell the kids how much their gifts cost. Idk. It makes me a little nuts."
Power Of Money
"True, I lived it twice. First time I was a young, driven, ladder climber. Second I was a greedy, grab All the Cheeto’s before everything goes to pot… then when it did in 2008, financial collapse happened, I became lost. I’d let 95% of my identity become my job when it disappeared so did I. Took over a year to get my head right."
Ever been told that you're turning into one of your parents?
That's another phrase often uttered, especially by a sibling who sees that you have slowly taken on the characteristics and idiosyncrasies of your mom or dad.
Learned behavior or genes?
Could be either or both. What do you think?
At one point in our lives, many of us have experienced the sensation of loneliness.
We've tried our best to fit in but seemed to fail at every turn to join an accepting community of like-minded people.
But that doesn't always come easily, but when it does, we go all in without really doing our research because we prefer to hold onto that initial feeling of acceptance.
Unfortunately, not all groups have genuinely good intentions. Because before you know it, you find yourself having been sucked into a cult.
Or maybe something that isn't but feels like one. But what is that exactly?
Thankfully, Redditor MichaelScottssmug put our minds at ease and asked the Reddit beehive:
"What isn’t a cult but feels like a cult?"
Facebook groups can include some very manipulative personalities.
The Dog Owners Group
"Some dog owners groups on facebook are very culty like. Got banned from one group for not crate training my pup. I like her sleeping in my bed as it helps with my anxiety."
"Yep, and they can be completely nutso in either direction. Some of them are all micromanage every moment of your dog’s life, constantly showing dominance so that it knows you’re the alpha. Flip it on its back twice a day and stare directly into its eyes until it looks away in submission. Take away its dinner every now and then and make it watch as you throw it all in the trash, just to keep it from getting too comfortable. If it doesn’t respond to hand signals and commands in six languages, you’ve utterly failed.”
"And others are like 'if you have any rules or boundaries whatsoever with your dog, then you’re basically Cruella DeVille. Your dog’s needs and desires should be prioritized over literally everything and everyone else in your life, including your other pets, your spouse, your children, and yourself. If anyone is allergic to/scared of/just not a big fan of your dog, you should instantly cut them out of your life because your dog should BE your life.'”
"Mommy groups. And even specific groups. Like a cult within a cult."
"Joined a cloth diapering group. I was excommunicated for using Pampers at night."
"Breastfeeding? If you aren’t nursing till 4? Bye!"
The One That Got Away
"My wife just left one. For a while, she found some feeling of belonging when she was feeling lonely at home. However, it wasn't worth the toxicity. Even by social media standards, there were some sh*tty indoctrinated people in there."
Consequences Of Soliciting "Mom Knowledge"
"An acquaintance of mine got called out in the most glorious fashion when she got sucked into the local Facebook mommy group."
"She posted asking for 'mom knowledge' of how to handle a teething baby and got the insane responses you would expect. (Giving the baby hard liquor; puting special crystals around the house; you name it) Her husband caught whiff of the insanity, and instead of waiting to get home that evening, replied to the post, 'Perhaps you could ask your husband, the PEDIATRIC DENTIST. He probably has actual, proven medicine for this situation.'"
"I don't know what he said when he got home that night, but she never publicly posted in the mommy group again - probably to the benefit of their son."
Certain auto communities make Redditors feel like they're going nowhere fast.
"Audi ownership (at least in the UK). I had an Audi Q3 as a hire car recently and other Audi drivers were suddenly letting me out at junctions, offering me parking spaces and even stopping to talk to me as if we'd known each other for years. I'm actually serious about this. It was weird."
What The Duck?
"I add Jeep owners to this. They leave ducks on each other's Jeeps??? Why???"
The Duck Discussion
"I only recently found out about the duck thing. I was walking out of the gas station and there's this lady just staring in my jeep, making little apprehensive motions as if she was going to get in. I ask if I can help her and she's saying she wants to leave a duck on the dash but she was afraid my dogs in the back seat might bite."
"She was so determined to give me, a random jeep owner, a duck that she was; standing in the cold, risking dog bites (not really as my boys are friendly goofballs but she didn't know that) and taking the risk that I might perceive this as someone trying to steal my truck/mess with my dogs or any other conclusion I could jump to at the moment."
"Ultimately I took her little Dracula duck and chatted with her for a couple of mins. Nice lady but very eccentric. The entire dash of her jeep was COVERED in rubber ducks. Like a duck army large enough to make her jeep float, no space to spare."
"It still sounds way nicer than "BMW cult" which consists of constant attempt to break as many road rules as possible in certain time."
Some Redditors' cult-like fears hit too close to home.
A Living Nightmare
"My condo association.. No I will not host the ritual at my place again this month, Dave!"
Fixing The HOA
"My wife worked her way up to president of our condo association. She's so anti-HOA that she has basically made it non-functional and doesn't enforce anything. One of our neighbors is also anti-HOA and he got elected as treasurer so now they have a majority vote on the board and overrule the other voting member who is a snobby hateful old lady."
"Thanks all for the kind words, I want to clarify when I said that my wife has made the condo association non-functioning, I'm referring to the petty BS like welcome mat size and thickness that the previous HOA board seemed overly obsessed with. As a result, they ignored a lot of building maintenance and my wife is solely focusing on upgrading and fixing issues that were ignored for years or even decades."
The One To Vote For
"My father made a point of becoming president of any condo association (called Strata where I live). He didn't want power, he just wanted to make sure nobody else abused the position."
"At his previous apartment he was president for 5 or 6 years. He was pretty strict about maintenance. No matter how expensive, if something needed fixing, he levied for it and got it fixed."
"An older member (it was kind of a retirement home) really didn't like that. He wanted to pay as little as possible until he sold his unit. So when a roof levy came through, he went to every resident who was super old and kind of confused. He spun elaborate tales of corruption and got a couple dozen proxy votes in his pocket. He then used those proxy votes to vote himself in as president and vote my dad out."
"My father sold his unit less than 30 days later. He knew the guy was going to run the place into the ground and wanted out."
"Less than a year later the whole apartment complex was sold off to a developer who was going to level it. Apparently the roof maintenance they decided not to do caused big problems they couldn't afford to fix."
I'm admittedly a hardcore fan of Disney, but let's be real. There are some weird, obsessed fanatics who are literally mad for the mouse, and I'm not even close to that level of mania.
Especially when it comes to merchandise. When I used to work at a Disney park, there would periodically be limited edition merchandise for sale to commemorate a specific event or anniversary. Annual pass holders would line up before the park opens to make sure they can snatch as many of these coveted items are allowed per purchaser so they can sell them on eBay for a king's ransom.
Disney pins are what many of these crazed fans are after, and they show up in line wearing lanyards decorated with their rare collection of pins for bragging rights.
I have no idea what they do for a living since they were always at the parks. Probably living off their eBay money.
I love Disney, but there are definitely others in the cultish community that put my level of passion to shame.
I've known many people who grew up in happy and stable families. I also know plenty of others who did not have the best upbringing or who don't get along with their parents one bit.
A while back, someone confided in me that they do not feel their parent were meant to have children. This was a lot for this person to take in. What would their parent's life have been like if they had felt comfortable or had been able to make a different choice?
It's a lot to think about — having a child is one of those singular events that can change the trajectory of your entire life.
People shared their thoughts with us after Redditor idkwhatoput_111 asked the online community,
"What are your views on having kids?"
"If you want them..."
"If you want them, raise them right. Discipline them, but be kind, don't provoke them to wrath. If you don't want them, that is valid. If you create something in this world, take care of it."
Agreed. Also understand that the world they are going to live in might be very different than the world you grew up in.
"Being firm but still reasonable..."
"Being firm but still reasonable and kind is so important. I'm as anti-authoritarian as ever existed, but if you're a parent you gotta RAISE a human and that's fundamentally different from being their buddy who they give easy love to because you let them do as they please."
You'd be authoritative, then, instead of authoritarian. Significantly better parenting style.
"I have a daughter and a stepson."
"I have a daughter and a stepson. I love them, and I love being a father, but if you don't want kids you shouldn't have them."
Indeed. You should not have a child till you want one, and feel you are ready. They are a lot of work, and expensive.
"More people should ask themselves whether it’s really for them before having them."
Indeed. Sex education matters.
"I'm all for..."
"I definitely had friends who swore they weren't having kids just wind up pregnant. Some of them have grown into it and some haven't."
"I'm all for people changing their minds. We grow up. Follow your heart. But be careful it's not just FOMO or boredom or something."
Such introspection is definitely valued! More people should think like this.
"This could all be prevented..."
"I feel that if more people actually paused and took a second to ask themselves, “Is this really what I want? Or is it because society/family members expect me to?” there would be a shift in the number of people having kids - for the better. It isn’t good for anyone involved to have kids and then later realize it’s not for them, after the kid is here."
"Those people likely won’t be great parents, and they risk their kid feeling unwanted. That could all be prevented if more people just stopped to think about what they actually want in life, whether or not they are suited to handle the challenges of raising another human being, and cared less about what society or family expects of them."
It should be presented as a choice rather than an expectation.
"I had parents that..."
"I am not neurologically suited to the role of being a parent. I had parents that should not have had any kids, let alone 5, so I am firm on this point. I cannot be a good parent, and in my opinion if you can't be a good one you shouldn't be one at all."
And if you grew up in a home with apathetic parents you don't want to live out that same apathy with your own children.
"Make sure you can afford them."
Important point that it's more than just affordability — children can be emotionally taxing and you have to be capable of dealing with that.
"I wish people didn't see it..."
"I wish people didn't see it as "the next step" in life but just as a thing you can do if you have the desire and means to."
That, and not seeing it as somehow being selfish when you choose not to have kids.
"Too many people..."
"Make sure you healed your trauma and generational trauma before even thinking about them. Too many people get children to fill an emptiness… turning the child into their own doll/therapist and then get upset when it becomes a person and not a mirror image."
Understanding and facing generational trauma is so important. Being able to have the courage to heal yourself can then make having children something you might consider.
As you can see, having kids is not an easy decision — and no easy task. It's always worth doing some soul-searching before you decide to have one, but life is of course much more complicated than that for some.
Have some suggestions of your own? Tell us more in the comments below!