People Reveal How You Can To Spot An American Tourist From A Mile Away
If you haven't spent a lot of time living or traveling abroad, it can be easy to not realize just how different the rest of the world can be. People from California can be very different from people from Kentucky, but they will share some of the same traits as Americans and not even know it. One Reddit user asked:
How do you spot an american tourist "from a mile away"?
Yeah, pretty much every response referenced Americans as loud. In all fairness, you're not very likely to notice a quiet person anywhere, so maybe it's just that the loud Americans are the ones to make an impression? One person replied that Americans even walk louder... so maybe not. Read through and see if you fit any of these stereotypes about American tourists. Oh, and shh. Inside voices!
Last time I saw a question like this, someone answered "white socks" and it made me start wearing black socks for the next few years.
Over 40/Under 40
Americans are very loud, i swear you have loudhailers hidden in your clothes somewhere.
Over 40, the tourists tend to be more on the very overweight side, but the women still wear yoga pants and the men always have a combination of button up shirts and loose fitting cargo shorts. And both men and women wear baseball caps and Oakley's or sunglasses similar to that style; with white trainers.
Under 40, you're very friendly, in a way that's both endearing and creepy. When we chat I feel like I'm being indoctrinated into a cult.
In my experience, any combination of the following:
- white socks
- wearing a sun visor
- Talking incredibly loud
- Their phone will be on a belt loop
American teenagers are usually better at blending in however, so the trick with these guys is to wait until you're in a restaurant, at which point they'll make their presence known by complaining about the local food.
In terms of positives however, I find most American tourists are incredibly friendly and sociable, they usually have no problem talking to strangers and striking up a pleasant conversation, something we Europeans never do with each other (this is also another "tell", but it's one we should adopt).
Especially In Museums
Generally hear them before I see them. Especially in museums where everyone is extra silent. Except for the Americans, goddammit!
Non-Metric Turn Of Phrase
They use the term "from a mile away" and not "from a kilometre away."
The huge American flag they are wearing usually gives it away.
Donate Via App
For some reason, American tourists in Norway always seem to be marveled at how technologically advanced Norway is. Read: how everywhere takes and prefers card, how charity fund raisers that go about with those money jugs also have a sign with an account number you can send money to, how there's a lot of electric cars here, etc etc etc.
Also, they always seem to automatically assume that if you aren't Norwegian, you're either a tourist, or, if you're middle eastern, a refugee. It's always a button annoying when you try to help some lost American couple find a stave church and they brush you off just because you have an Australian accent and are apparently a tourist who doesn't know the place like them even though you've lived in that area for ten years.
Where Are You Running To?
Footwear. Americans for some reason wear sneakers / running shoes when unnecessary. In the US running shoes/tennis shoes are the default casual shoe. It's becoming less true, but is still very much a presence in our culture. I didn't even own a different style of casual shoe until I was in high school. I think it's probably a result of sending kids to school in shoes they can play in at recess or wear in phys ed that just carries over into adult life.
No One Cares
As an American who lived in Israel for a while, I realized that Americans do the following:
- We talk loudly,
- Many of the things we say loudly, includes many irrelevant details. "Yes" or "no" answers are of high value in middle eastern culture; but in American culture we like to tell you all about why something is or that our daughter got married last year or our cat has diabetes.
- We are morons about diet. Another American moved to where I lived. He preached about high protein diets, bitched about how he couldn't find fat free milk or pasteurized egg whites, in a country that specializes in high-fat cuisine.
- Americans think the world impressed by their city. No one cares that you're from Las Vegas
Amazed By The Ancient
- Amazed by things which are more than 200 years old, presumably because they don't have many things that old in the USA.
- Quite often on the heavy side weight-wise (sorry!)
- Hand-held fans, maybe because air conditioning is very common in the USA.
- Expecting everyone to speak English and/or not wanting to learn the local language.
Bigger And Stronger
I remember I was a small kid in Tijuana. They were typically a lot more good looking than the local population. The girls were hot as hell. The Marines that would come around from San Diego looked like superheroes and made these other guys look... well, not that.
We'd get European tourists as well but the American ones looked bigger and kind of stronger. Especially the military guys, like something out of these Marvel comics, at least the ones in their twenties.
All buff, tall, etc.
I always felt embarrassingly underdressed when traveling in Europe.
On the flip side, as a native Arizonan I can always spot the European/English tourist because they will be bright red.
In the UK, first-time American tourists look bewildered trying to navigate their rental car in busy roundabouts (traffic circles)... but from what I understand Americans can't navigate them in America, either.
Recently visited a very touristy part of my country (Ireland) and my wife observed that "Americans display their wealth through their raincoats."
Americans always seem to be wearing a full designer outdoor adventure wear outfit when everyone else is wearing like...a t shirt and jeans to take a walk around a small village or something.
California Is Totally Different From Kentucky
All the Americans I saw abroad always traveled as a family and had a MILLION bags, usually the mom would be carrying the largest/most.
Also, we are the only ones who would differentiate between different parts of the country. My European friends never understood why I always asked where in America another American was from. I guess they didn't understand that people from California can be VERY different from Kentucky or Southern people, so you gotta know in order to judge this new person based on stereotypes.
That American Swag
I've lived in the USA for 18 years, originally from England. It's not really anything specific, and it's hard to explain but Americans have a certain attitude and way of holding themselves that's easily noticeable. They just seem more confident and at ease than other nations. You don't notice it at first, but it's easy to spot after you've lived here a while. Last time we were in England we stopped at a convenience store and two young Americans were sitting opposite, they hadn't spoken but we knew immediately.
My wife walked up:
"You here on vacation?"
"Oh.. yeah! Wow, how did you know?"
"Duh. Where are you from?"
Proudly. "We're from the USA"
"Oh, really honey? Where do you think I'm from?!"
Turns out they were from Ohio and the last thing they expected in some quiet British convenience store was to find someone from their home country.
My wife says I've never acquired it either, she can usually spot English people really quickly too.
Coffee To Go
When I lived in Europe it dawned on me that anyone walking and drinking coffee is American. Not sure if it holds true today, but back then Europeans definitely stopped, relaxed, and sat / stood at a hightop table to enjoy their coffee. Also, anyone talking unnecessarily loudly is usually American.
Volume As Fluency
When I was living in Petersburg, I could spot my fellow Americans by the following:
- clothing. American Middle Class has a distinct couture that really stood out against the Finns, Russians, and Baltic citizens.
- dollars. God damn it, people - hit a money exchange before you hit the market. Especially in a country where hard currency was still illegal.
- staring confusedly at the food you just ordered. Beef Stroganoff in a fancy restaurant doesn't look like your Hamburger Helper version, and fish soup is traditionally served with the head still attached.
- volume-as-fluency. While I hate the stereotype of Americans saying something louder in hopes of a non-speaker suddenly understanding due to the pressure of the sound waves shoving meaning directly into their brains, I don't dismiss its truth.
It's Not That Big A Deal
Loud, extremely loud and slow. To give some explanation to that, it's more than talking loudly. It's closing doors to hard, walking down stairs/escalators to forcefully, and so forth. They are seen as a bit brutish, I guess. My parents ran a tourist park in the bush in Australia and when the American's went hiking you could hear them from 2km away and they'd take forever on what was basically a quick walk around the hill, as well as exaggerate it as if they just went on a 3 day hike in the jungle, for what I was doing alone from the age of 5. Overweight more often than not, and often couldn't cook whatsoever.
The Classic Overshare
I love Americans but the talking thing is so noticeable. I was in a pub(Ireland)last week and there was this American chatting at the bar. Pretty well away from me. By the time left I knew His name, his hopes and dreams for the future. And the pros and cons of golfing as a tourist. In Copenhagen and there was a group of Americans talking very loudly and facetiming their friends back home. I knew exactly what beers they were all drinking and that they are facetiming Kelly.
If any of us wanted to, we could have scammed them good using the information they freely announced to everyone in the bar.
As much as we'd like to assume spirits, ghosts, and paranormal happenings are relegated to movies and books, plenty of real-life stories abound.
Inexplicable sightings, things heard, and cold pockets of air are encountered by plenty of people all the time.
It's up to you if you want to believe them. But it's hard to argue with the conviction of the contributors to a recent Reddit thread.
Redditor ihadanightmarewithu asked:
"What is the scariest / paranormal story you have ever experienced?"
Many people talked about the things that caught their eye once upon a time.
Two Places At Once
"I was staying with a group of friends rock climbing in Spain. Really creepy air bnb, lots of strange things happened while we were staying there. The creepiest was one morning we were getting ready for the day, packing food and generally getting our things together, and I went upstairs to grab something."
"As I was heading back downstairs I walked past my friend's boyfriend on the landing and saw him turn and go into his and my friend's room; I think I asked him something but he didn't reply. I thought 'rude' and headed downstairs."
"Walked into the kitchen and he was there sorting food out with my friend."
"Everyone swore he'd been downstairs the whole time, plus there was only one staircase and it would have been impossible for him to overtake me and get to the kitchen before me without me noticing. I went back upstairs and checked their room and there was no one up there but me."
"I've never experienced anything creepy or inexplicable before we stayed in that air bnb and I'd say I'm v. sceptical about supernatural/paranormal stuff but multiple things happened on that trip that spooked me."
"A floating head."
"I was putting beef in the slow cooker because I wanted it done for morning, it was late at night. I reached up to grab some seasonings, and heard creaking. I told my kids to get in bed."
"I see something out of my peripheral vision and there was no body but a head of a bald, pale man floating 3 1/2 maybe 4 feet off the ground in the middle of the floor. It's face kept looking as if it was sad, or like it was begging. It locked eyes with me....I froze."
"I had a darker wall, with a coat rack with my husbands work jackets so it stood out like a store thumb. I looked away thinking it was my imagination but when I looked back it was still there so I ran out the back door because I'd have to pass it to get upstairs with my husband and kids."
"I ended up calling him on my phone to come walk me in. I was wide awake, not sleepy, not out of it, on no medication. I have no reason to see that ever."
Presences, Seen and Felt
"When I was a kid my mom took my sister and I on vacation. I only remember this happening one night while we were there but the hotel we stayed at was pretty much all flats with one bedroom. I slept in the bed with my mom and my sister was on the pull out sofa. I can't remember if I was trying to go to sleep or woke up in the night to this but I just know everyone else was asleep."
"It was really dark with just a little light from the street outside coming in on the sides of the curtains. On each side of the bed stood a black silhouette and it felt like they were all staring right at me acknowledging their presence. I didn't feel threatened or afraid of them at all and turned on the bedside light and not surprisingly nobody was there."
"I turned the light back off and there they were still in the same positions. I just looked at them for a while but must have eventually fell asleep. The only other detail of that experience I remember is waking up the next day and mentioning it at breakfast and my sister saying she felt like she was being watched the whole night. I have no explanation for it but it's a memory that has stuck with me over many years now."
"One time I was going home in my car and saw a guy that appeared to have no arms no hair and a longa** neck in a JUST a hoodie no pants no underwear trying to climb a tree in the woods with their legs and idk know if that's paranormal but it was such a fu**ing weird experience that I think it qualifies"
For others, it was all about the things they heard.
"This is something I've never been able to rationalize."
"For months after my dad died, we were getting landline calls where no one would answer on the other end. This was in 2002, so, while robo callers were a thing, it definitely wasn't as prevalent as it is today, but we did assume they were probably wrong numbers or something. (We didn't have any phones that displayed caller id at the time.)"
"Well, one time, after getting yet another call with only silence on the other end, I jokingly said, 'Dad, if that's you, call my cell phone.' "
"I want to preface this by saying I rarely ever got calls on my cell phone, and never spam calls in those days. I was 18 with an unlisted number that only my family and a few friends had."
"Just a few minutes later, my phone rang with a number I'd never seen before. With what I'd just said fresh in my mind, I kind of freaked out and didn't answer. I was on my way out to go somewhere with my mom, so when we got in the car, I told her what happened. We made the decision to call the number back."
"It never rang, but there was activity at the other end: muffled static and the sound of numbers being dialed slowly. It was the weirdest thing. Both my mom and I said hello, but no one ever answered."
"Has anyone ever had something like that happen to them when dialing a number? I've never had it happen before or since."
And the Crying Stopped
"About 10 years ago (I'd have been 24) I was still living with my parents. My bedroom was in the basement. One night, around 3am I was woken up to the sounds of a young child crying. It sounded like it was coming from just outside my window. I couldn't just look out the window because it was covered in ivy, so I quickly hopped out of bed to go help the kid."
"As I got closer to my bedroom door I could hear the crying was actually on the other side of the door. I opened the door. No one is there and the crying stopped. Spooked, I immediately jumped back in bed and the crying started again."
"Later that day at dinner, my family was sitting around the table and I brought up my experience I had. One of my sisters told a story about how when she was a kid she'd always leave her room at night to go sleep with my parents because she'd see a little girl walking out of her closet."
"As she left her room and got to my parents' door waiting to be let in because the door was locked she'd see the little girl walking up the stairs that were right there. After her telling this story my youngest sister looked scared and asked, 'the little girl, is she wearing a pink nightgown with shoulder-length brunette hair?' "
"Now my other sister was scared because that is exactly who she saw. My youngest sister told how she had similar experiences with that little girl coming out of the closet at night or walking up the stairs at night."
"I'm convinced that something happened either in that house before we moved in or on that land that my parents' house was built on."
Crying From Afar
"Not my story but my moms, apparently when I was just a baby I was always a calm sleeper and once when my mom was having a friend over downstairs they could hear a baby crying so they naturally went to check on me and I was still calmly asleep..."
"...but every time they went back downstairs they could hear some more crying, but apparently the crying was somehow off in a different way as well, one day when mom and dad were downstairs watching tv while I was sleeping upstairs, they heard crying and finally pinpointed the thing that was off..."
"...apparently it came from the opposite side of the house compared to my room and that room had the latch to the attic. Creepy stuff, but I'm not that surprised. This place is totally haunted in my book, I once heard my mom call me downstairs while I was home alone."
Finally, some people interacted directly with the spirits.
Advice From Beyond
"So once while I was home alone, my neighbor knocked on my door. This was when we still lived in Oklahoma, and I was homeschooled. He was bit younger then me but we still played Halo together. I was thirteen at the time."
"I let him in and we had a conversation about what I thought the afterlife would be like, and this was really odd for him. We talked for a few minutes before he decided to leave. When my parents got home they told me he had a heart attack at school and died."
One Time Only
"I once felt a hand on my face when I was sleeping. I had the covers covering my entire face and felt something push down lightly and then a bit harder."
"I was absolutely terrified and when I finally mustered up the courage to look, nothing was there. It never happened again but there have been a few times where something similar has happened."
A Very Helpful Ghost
"I was staying in the Banff Springs Hotel in 95 for a snowboard trip and I was leaving the room and forgot my jacket."
"When I remembered right at the door, I turned around to grab it from the bed where I left it and it was being held 2' above the bed like it was being being pinched by fingers."
"The moment I turned around it dropped to the bed."
"That blew my mind!"
"My GF's sister at the time was working concierge and she said there was a bell hop ghost and gave the paper story...lol It wasn't threating at all, but was crazy to see!"
Here's hoping you manage to sleep well despite all these spooky stories!
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Like male birds with vibrant feathers and complicated mating ritual dances, straight men will go to absurd lengths to win the attention of women.
Go to any bar or club. Scan the room and undoubtedly come across bicep-clenching shirt sleeves and loud male voices screaming into the ear of a less-than-enthusiastic listener on the dance floor.
That's not to say there are plenty of wonderful traits that draw women to men. There's a reason marriage and procreation continues.
But for all those success stories, there are so many instances that involve a man trying to win the heart of a woman using means that are antithetical to what she actually values.
Redditor Londoner421 asked:
"Women, what's the least attractive quality in a man that they usually think is attractive?"
Many women responded by describing the men who apparently feel the need to convince others that they're worthy of attention.
But nobody likes a sales pitch.
"Treating dates like an informercial for themselves." -- zazzlekdazzle
" 'But wait, there's more! Have sex with me within the next 90 minutes and you'll get not one, not two, but THREE extra orgasms! Be the envy of all of your friends with this limited one-time-only offer!' " -- nubsauce87
Wall Flower Opposite
"Over-confidence or the need to show off" -- Glasswall1
"*Famous last words: 'Hey guys! Look what I can do!!'*👍" -- AndringRasew
"TLDR: insecurity" -- lipcrnb
Nobody Cares, Dude
"Bragging about having money" -- lockdownhype
"My love will take you around the world, but my bank account won't get us past the airport." -- InternetKidsAreMean
"Nice. I'm broke af" -- RogueDeku
A Fine Line
" 'Knowing' everything. Sure, intelligence is nice, but it's fu**ing transparent when you start bullshitting just so you don't have to admit there's something you don't know. Especially if I do know it."
Other women talked about the more toxic elements of masculinity.
"Being overly aggressive with other people. Like, you are out at a club with him and he is ready to pick fights with anyone who (he thinks) looks at him or me wrong."
"I think it makes them feel macho but it's a huge turn off for me. It's happened a few times, and the last time I just turned around and took a car home."
"Expressing the need to be violent without any real cause or hint that they enjoy being violent. It just outright frightens me being anywhere need people that do that."
We Are Not Apes
" 'Alpha male' 🙄" -- justputonsomemusic
"An unstable, early iteration of male. Needs further development and testing before public release." -- DoomCircus
And other women lamented all the men that seem to think attraction is a zero-sum game. These guys apparently felt that the only way to look good is to push a possible "threat" away.
Just Be Nice
"Putting other people down, to make themselves look better."
"No, you are not making yourself look better. You're being a di**."
Again, Nobody Cares.
"The one up man. Almost always dominates the conversation and one ups everyone else's experiences and replies. Shows me you're immature and can't hold a conversation without the focus being on you."
"Guys and/or girls who pride themselves on being able to out drink or outsmoke everyone until they're a blubbering mess. Or doing a bunch of drugs."
"They think they're so epic but it's honestly embarrassing when it's a constant and people have to babysit you during a get together."
Hopefully, at least a few men will come across this list and check themselves the next time they feel a fight or a boast welling up.
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Have you ever heard something go "bump" in the night unexpectedly? How did you react? Did you say something about it?
How about something that was amazing but completely unexplainable? Many people experience moments like this. And they are endlessly fascinating to hear about.
We, as humans, are always looking for something greater than ourselves.
"What's the creepiest, most unexplainable thing that happened to you?"
Here were the answers.
"I was 12~ and had just gotten my first mobile phone. One weekend, I get a call from an older sounding man with an Australian accent (not that weird, I live in Australia, but kinda relevant)."
"He asks 'Is this [my first and last name]?' I go 'Yes...?' He takes a deep breath, sounds really emotional and says 'I'm your grandpa.'"
"All I could say was 'No you're not?' Both my grandfathers had been dead for years by that point. Plus, they were both European, I'm first generation Australian."
"There's no way that even if one of my grandmas had been getting side action that this guy was my grandpa. He sounded disappointed and hung up. Haunts me to this day."-Living_Employee_7735
"Our family cat passed away when I was 14 and it really sucked, he was a great cat."
"Fast forward to 16 years old and I'm sitting by my mom on the couch and she's showing me something on Facebook on her IPad when I swear I saw a cat out of the corner of my eye so I look up.
"It's our old cat walking into the kitchen rubbing his tail against the wall as he made the corner as he always did, my mom also looked up just after me and stared and looked back at me and I was like 'Did you just see our old cat?'"
"She replied 'yeah he just went around the corner there.' I got up and went and looked in the kitchen and he's nowhere to be found. 10 years later my mom and I still talk about how creepy that was that we both saw it."-Coach_Flaps
O Brother, Where Art Thou?
"My brother passed away in 2008. Fast forward to 2016. I was asleep and I had a dream about him as I often did since he passed away. This dream was different. It was like he was talking directly to me, looking straight in my eyes."
"In the dream I asked him: 'Is it really you?' He said: 'yes.' I said, 'Prove it.' He then reached out and touched me on the arm, and when he did I jolted up in bed wide awake covered in sweat."
"I thought all this was really strange and I went to the bathroom to put some water on my face. As I was looking in the mirror, I saw that there was a backwards 'R' written on my arm in pen exactly where he touched me in the dream."
"The letter 'R' was the first letter of his name. There were no pens in my bedroom, and I have never sleepwalked before. You can call me crazy, or lying or whatever, but that was the single most unexplainable thing that has ever happened to me."-Sardonnicus
These are the things that can really keep us up at night.
"Once when I was 8 or 9 me and my cousins went down to play on this gated community I lived."
"We were on the inside of this fence when this taxi driver pulled up, asked if we wanted to go to the magic Kingdom or something cheesy like that, pulled a saxophone from his trunk and started playing while inviting us inside his car."
"I still remember my mom's face when I told her later that day."-matalleone
"Every time my mother cooks a specific dessert, an earthquake happens in Chile, that only happened twice between 2015 and 2016, strangely the two earthquakes had almost the same magnitude."-AbelrgAb25
Dreams Of Lost Loved Ones
"I had a dream a few weeks ago. Bad times in my life, right on the cusp of things getting much better (they are now) and I was sleeping badly and just not mentally well."
"My favorite uncle, closest thing I had to a dad growing up (actual dad was not good at dadding), died suddenly of a heart attack a few years ago."
"It was abrupt and shocked everyone. I was across the country and distraught by the news. He was by far the closest of any of my family members."
"I was dreaming about something irrelevant to him or anything, and suddenly I turned around and there he was, just standing there holding his arms out and grinning like, 'heeeey!!'"
"I just lost sense of the dream immediately, I was so thrilled to see him. Like the dream was a work assignment and he was just showing up to break the monotony."
"I jumped into his arms and hugged him and kept telling him how happy I was to see him. The rest of that dream, he just hung out with me. I was just so happy."
"I've never had an experience like that because honestly I've always been the aloof black sheep of my family and I never imagined anyone would care to visit me after they died of all people, if such a thing is possible."
"But there he was, and it will stick with me always that maybe he just came to say what's up and give me a little slap on the shoulder and make sure I kept on trucking because better stuff was coming. I miss him."-OctopusPudding
"I often have meaningless dreams about certain situations which I tend to forget about quite quickly."
"But fast forward a few weeks in real life, I'll be in that same situation, will repeat the same dialogue(s), will be wearing the same clothes, will be talking to the same people and I'll only realize the deja-vu until after the moment has passed."
"It happens so often, I've come to expect it now."-slightlyboredforever
People experience the unexplained all the time, but how it impacts them is the more important part of the story.
Haha...I'm Not Stalking You...
"After moving to LA, I ran into my ex-girlfriend 5 times over the course of two months."
"For context, I had moved from South Orange County to LA for a nice office job. My ex-girlfriend had moved to San Diego after the breakup, then moved to LA after breaking up with her last boyfriend."
"I would have chalked it up to random chance that we now lived a few miles from one another, except when we first noticed one another, she immediately said, 'I'm not stalking you.'"
"Thankfully, after a fifth time we 'ran into each other' I didn't see her again for almost five years when I was getting ready to move back to Hawaii."
"I had the foresight to lie about which island I was moving to, just in case she decided to follow me at some point."-WatchingInSilence
Pay Attention To Your Friend's Feelings
"Friend of mine was in a hot tub with me. We were having fun and nothing was out of the ordinary."
"She looks at a plane in the sky and her whole demeanor changed before she said, 'Something bad is going to happen. No like serious. Something awful, I don't know.'"
"She isn't a person to do this. Seriously, she had never said anything like that before. Turns out, that night, a guy at our school and his whole family got in a terrible plane accident that killed his mother, brother, and sister."
"He survived but was in a coma for weeks. Have no clue how she knew but I always listen to her when she says something is off…"-Whywhywhywhy69
The Void Stares Back
"I was on a walk through my (safe) neighborhood when I went past this house where these notably odd people live. I moved to the other side of the road as I was coming around a curve."
"All of a sudden this older guy started following me. I didn't think much of it as a lot of people were out that evening. A few blocks later he caught up to me, and started walking next to me."
"I walked a bit faster, hoping with the age of this guy, he would slow down a bit. I eventually lost him, and I disappeared behind a tree."
"He was there, as if he knew where I was going to go. He started reaching out for my shorts, but I ran as fast as I could. Luckily, I made it to my house and locked all the doors."
"A few days later, I went on a walk, and I didn't see him again. Nor did I see him ever again. The look in his eyes, it was just...dead. It was like two black holes were staring back at me. I will never be able to forget him, just for that."-Kneeling_Fish
Did any of these stories scare you? Do you have any scary stories to share?
Life has so many dimensions, that the scary is inevitable. Keep your caution about yourself at all times.
There are three different types of comas we can have. One is called toxic-metabolic encephalopathy, which is caused by illness or infection across the body. There's the medically induced coma which is caused by medical professionals to temporary cause a deep state of unconsciousness. Then there's the persistent vegetative state where the patient is the unaware of their surroundings and unable to movement.
However, after u/Pilot_Mosley asked Reddit, we're not so sure that every coma patient is completely unaware of their surroundings. Many people reported hearing their family or the nurses talking to them. Some said the had vivid dreams, only to learn those events actually happened.
Redditor Pilot_Mosley wanted to know what actually is going on in the unconscious mind and how it changed them after:
"Patients who woke up from a long coma, what's your story? How different were things?"
Read on to find out how the coma effected these people, whether it was a day or years.
"I had a friend who was put into a medically induced coma after a bad accident that lasted months. When she woke up, she recalled being able to remember hearing everything since the moment she entered the hospital. She even remembered things her mom had said to her while she was being transferred from one hospital to another."
"She said things looked different than the way she had pictured it in her head, but she was conscious and heard everything, she just couldn't move, speak or do anything really."
"I had the same experience. I was out for 12 days. I could hear and remember every conversation. My mom, and family was crying and hugging my body, holding my hand, I felt it all. I wasn't able to respond though."
"So was it awful or did your brain make it comfortable for you?"
"It was on off, almost like a dream. I could hear and feel everything (seeing blurry images) and suddenly it was just nothing/black. I thought it was just a very intense dreams because I am one of those people who could remember their dreams vividly. When I was awake from the coma and started to feel better, I shared with mom that I had a dream of day 1, I remember scissors when they cut my hair and someone stitched my head, I could feel the whole process but I wasn't in pain. the 2nd day it was my grandma crying and she hugs me, and I can see her wearing a specific shirt, and so on until the 12 days. I was surprised when my mom told me those weren't dreams. All of those really happened when I was unconscious."
"I was 16 when that happened, now 14 years later I can still feel and remember the way my mom and grandma hugged me and squeezed my hand. Hearing their cry and calling my name in prayers."
"It's ironic that now both are passed away and this are the memory of them that keep repeating in my brain."
A year long coma.
"Back in high school a girl I knew who was younger than me was in a car accident. She was in a coma for around a year, maybe a little less. When she came out of it, she remembered snippets of conversations around her while she was "out" and even seeing a few people. The only thing was, she said everything she saw was red-tinged; so she'd see her mom at her bedside but it'd look like a red filter had been put over her vision."
"She was annoyed at how many times people told her it was all right to go on, that her mom could be free if she did. She identified a few voices she knew for sure and told her mom, who had a lot fewer friends afterward. She was 14 when the wreck happened and never made it back to school, getting her GED at 19. She still has mobility issues 30+ years later but she's doing pretty well now considering everything."
"I never thought about how I would feel knowing people would want my loved ones to move on. I mean I think I would want them to move on too. but I would also be aware of all it by the sounds of it. That sucks."
"I had a good friend die after 6 months in a coma. It's a extremely hard decision on whether or not to want them to pass on or hope for the better. At a certain point where there isn't much to do about it anymore. They don't seem to be getting better but you don't want to lose hope either. It feels like hell when that point comes."
At the start of the pandemic.
"I was out for seven weeks."
"I woke up to a pandemic and no one allowed in. Thank God for Skype."
"You lived the beginning of 28 Days Later."
"The Walking dead plot almost achieved."
Still 17 at heart.
"So, my husband was in a coma for about a month when he was 17. His was due to a frontal brain injury. Arrested development is usually seen psychologically, not necessarily physically. Like, their body will go thru puberty, but their brain development does not equal that. My husband is not still '17,' but there are times where I can see the delayed development when it comes to decision making, emotional responses. Physically, nothing stopped. But it effects a LOT. At least a brain injury does. Even when it comes to sexual drive. Sometimes it's like they never got out of that 17 year old boy phase."
Accidental overdose coma.
"Well it first started off as a dislocated shoulder and after they put it back in place they just kept giving me Dilaudid and at first it was like every hour then they switched it to every 30 minutes then they switched it every 15 minutes and I just got so sleepy they moved me up into a room last I remembered from the ER and then my friend kept saying my name but I couldn't move I couldn't open my eyes but I could still hear her. Then I heard one of the nurses come in and she couldn't get me to wake up so then the head nurse came in and she claimed that I was faking it but no matter what she did she just said I wouldn't wake up."
"So it was at this point they said that the nurse who was in charge of my painkillers put me into an accidental overdose coma. And even still in a coma they kept giving me painkillers for a while like probably one or two days before the head nurse actually noticed. I mean it wasn't a long coma but I still felt like I wanted to share my experience."
"How and why did they keep increasing the amount? Did you ever get an answer?"
"Yeah I tried to sue them but they said that I signed some papers which I don't remember signing about how they couldn't be held liable or something. And the nurse who is in charge of giving me medication told the head nurse, 'She kept saying she was in pain so I kept giving her more medication,' and the head nurse said, 'That's ridiculous she can't even move let alone talk right now. How in the f*ck do you think she even can tell you she's in pain?' And it went quiet for a while and then the head nurse said that she's in charge of me for the rest of my remainder in the hospital which was about a week because they wanted to monitor me for after that happened and I had to have several tests to make sure it didn't f*ck up my brain."
"My dad was in an induced coma for a bit over a month years ago had to undergo a very difficult surgery and he had multiple complications afterwards so that's why it took them so long to wake him up."
"Not a very long coma, but he couldn't wrap his head around how we went from freezing temperatures to nice spring sunny days."
"Maybe off topic but I have to tell this one, he had some very weird dreams during the coma. He told us one time, he dreamt about being at his own funeral... and I'm not kidding, the walls of the hall were covered in PESTO LASAGNA. Ok, it's a bit less weird maybe since we're Italian, but I still laugh thinking about it."
"Omg the dreams. I still remember them 10 years after. I was in a medically induced coma for months and all I remember is the relentless racing from dream to dream but recognizing something was wrong. Maybe due to having sleep paralysis I can sometimes wake myself up but it was not possible in a coma and it was horrible."
"I was in a "run of the mill" surgery. Everything was fine until they removed the instruments. Someone had forgotten to sheath the scalpel after they inserted into my thigh on route to my heart. When they removed the instruments my arteries were cut open from my thigh into my heart. I lost all but one liter of blood and was put on life support after extensive attempts to control my bleeding and 12 blood transfusions."
"When I came out of the coma 3 months after the surgery they removed five tubes that had replaced my normal bodily functions, at that time I could only breath deeply enough to saturate my blood to the 70% level (mid to high 90s is considered a normal range). I had to learn how to breath, something that is normally an automatic function from birth onward. It took 1 month to learn how to breath without using an oxygen machine and an additional 3 years to be able to stop using the machine."
"Prior to the surgery I had 3% body fat and was leg pressing 1100 pounds on a 5 day a week schedule. When I had a ' new to me' doctor come to ask if he could examine me I agreed but asked why he wanted to do that. He said he had previously examined about 20 patients who had similar mistakes made to them but that I was the only one he had ever seen other than in the morgue and wanted to understand why I was alive."
Though some of these stories are heartbreaking, they all have lived to tell us the tale today.
Remember, if a loved one is ever in a coma, and you decided to visit them, be careful what you say because they may remember it when they wake up.