When you are alone at home, your imagination can get the best of you.
Many of them recalled having unexpected visitors. Not all of them were human.
It Was A HootThe Lion King Reaction GIF Giphy
"I was woken from a deep sleep by the most horrifying high pitched howling noise. We lived deep in a wooded area, and I was familiar with sounds like foxes barking or even fisher cats screaming, but this was eerie and didn't sound like an animal. Then it came from the other side of the house, but there was no sound of anything walking. You know how your mind isn't really logical when you first wake? I was convinced it was some terrible otherworldly creature."
"In the morning I checked some online recordings of sounds to figure it out. Turned out to be a tiny harmless screech owl. Little guy can make some demonic sounds tho!"
"I was taking a nap in my apartment under blankets in my bed when I hear the door open. Thinking it's my husband, I ignore it. But about five minutes later, I hear several female voices. I'm thinking I'm dreaming so again, I ignore it. The voices get louder and suddenly my bedroom door opens."
"I freak out and bolt upright in bed. Three women were in my apartment: 2 young, 1 older. I shriek! They shriek! They run out of my apartment!"
"It turned out that the management company showed the wrong apartment available for rent that day. I got an apology and a bouquet of flowers."
"I was maybe 11 or 12 and was home alone one winter day. The desktop computer I was using shared a wall with our (unheated) garage. The house was so quiet you could hear a pin drop. All of a sudden this boom erupted from the garage that shook the wall, it honestly sounded like a bomb went off. 20 minutes later, after hiding behind the couch and getting my heart rate down I finally went to inspect."
"A 2 liter sprite bottle had frozen and exploded off the shelf."
Man In The Window
"I was probably about 12, newly allowed to be home alone for a couple hours over the summer. A man was walking through my fenced in backyard, walked right onto my deck to the back window. My dog was going nuts barking with her hair standing up. I had no way out of the house or to the phone without this man seeing me in the window. So I'm hiding behind the couch waiting for him to break in when I see him exit my yard through the gate. I immediately call my mom almost in tears and she said 'oh I forgot to tell you the gas meter guy was coming.' Of course the gas meter is right next to the window my brother and I always used to 'break in' to our own house when we forgot our keys. My dog was the only bada** that day.."
A Forgotten Delivery
"I was about 9. My mom and I were babysitting my younger cousins at their house, and my mom ran to the store real quick. Before she left, she ordered a pizza.I don't know the exact details. I think she thought She would be back before the pizza came, but she wasn't. My mom And I lived in a rural area, so we never had a pizza be delivered, so I guess I just forgot it was coming.. So I was alone with a two and a four year old, and all of a sudden this dude starts banging on the door. I hid with them behind the couch. He kept banging and banging for quite a while. I guess he went to leave, and that's when my mom came home. We were so scared!"
"I was babysitting a family I was unfamiliar with. My parents knew them and suggested me when they needed a babysitter and as I liked having money, I accepted. The kids go to bed and I kill time as one does before smartphones are a thing by...reading I think? Maybe doing homework, but that seems unlikely."
"Anyways, I start to hear speaking from another room. Not just speaking, but this low, almost demonic voice speaking to another one. I'm not a religious sort, but when you realize that no, you're not just hearing things there's definitely a voice it's more then a little creepy."
"Not knowing what was going on, I slowly crept up to the doorway of the sitting room, then peered around the corner."
"F'KING FURBYS. TALKING TO EACH OTHER. AT NIGHT. IN THE DARK."
"The first night alone at my new house, a dude tried scouting around my home looking for a way in. I flipped on all the lights and ran downstairs as loudly as I could holding a plastic tomahawk in one hand, and my phone dialing 911 in the other. He never actually got inside the house, but it was terrifying especially since it was literally my first night of living on my own."
A Bad Reflection
"Growing up we had large old mirror with a thick wood frame leaning against the wall in our hallway. I was doing some homework in the kitchen but got up to get something from the living room. The hallway is the connecting room between the two. So I passed through it, picked up whatever I needed in the living room, turned around and was on my way back ....and that old mirror is broken on the floor. IT'S SHATTERED. Pieces everywhere. As if it had EXPLODED. It was completley fine when I passed it just seconds before. I didnt hear it break."
"I just kind of walked by it and headed out the kitchen door. Scared the sh*t out of me."
Moving Out Fast
"Was in the shower when I heard the door to my apartment being unlocked. Husband wasn't due back for several hours. Turns out it was the skeevy building manager snooping around people's apartments when he thought they were not home. Reported him to the company that own the building but nothing ever came of it. Moved out shortly after."
Meowwww...Not Safe For Work No GIF Giphy
"I was house sitting for some family. They neglected to mention that their cat knows how to open doors.
I learned this at 2AM when the bedroom door flung open."
Not So LOL
"I once lived in a building where the realtor got a little too comfortable not informing me of showings and just letting himself in. My girlfriend and I were in the bedroom getting busy and I heard voices in the kitchen say, hi we're here. My buddies were around using my laundry machine so I just yelled, yea so what, busy in here. I then hear the realtors voice say my name. We toss on clothes and open the bedroom door to a family of three staring back at us. Young me was just embarrassed. Now me would have been livid. No matter tho as we had some good laughs afterwards."
"When I was in college I lived in the upstairs apartment of a house. The owners we're trying to sell the house so realtors would come by with potential buyers, but I was never notified of these times. The people downstairs were supposed to let me know. I was napping once and woke up to people coming into my room. After that I would turn on my magnetic alarm so it would go off when the door was opened and off when closed. It wasn't a pleasant way to wake up, but better than people in my apartment."
Lock them Out
"Was in the shower when I heard loud banging outside. Panicked, I shut off my shower and tried to figure out what to do. I wrapped myself in a robe and peeked out my bathroom door to see that my building's superintendent had taken a hammer to the latch lock (not sure what they're called. The type of lock where you flap it over from inside the apartment) and completely ripped it off the wall to get in.
When I asked him wtf he was doing he claimed he had to change the air filters???? They were supposed to text or call when they wanted to enter. Wasn't my first or last run-in with him. So scary when creeps have keys to your home."
"We lived in a maisonette in London (we lived upstairs and a man was downstairs), he came banging at our door one day screaming that his flat was being flooded from our bathroom and to let him in. Well I was 14 and my bro 13 (mum was out). He came in, went in to the bathroom and did something. I don't know what (he was an adult and we trusted him). Well mum called the council out and there had never been a leak.
No water marks or anything so mum told us not to let him in again. Next time mum went out he came banging at the door again and we told him what mum said. He... Went.... Apes**t. LET ME F**KING IIINN, LET ME F**KING IIIINN. All the while banging the heck out of the door. God knows why he wanted in. Scary."
"I once went to look at a duplex for rent. The property management company gave me the key and the address and just told me I had to turn in the key by such and such time. I get there, unlock and open the door, and see clothes, furniture, knick knacks etc. And then I hear the click of excited dog feet coming down the stairs. I look over to see a very confused, VERY large Rottweiler mix.
He freezes and starts at me. I freeze and stare at him. My brain finally caught up to the situation and slammed the door shut just as the dog launched himself at me, barking furiously.
The landlord meant to give me the key and address for the other half of the duplex -_-."
Fisher Outblack cat GIF by Francisco Negrello Giphy
"First time I heard a fisher cat in my back yard at night I nearly pooped myself. Those things sound like screaming human babies and just, no. At the time I wasn't familiar with them so I noped quickly back into the house."
the old spring
Yeah, my SO and I recently bought a house, and the garage door had a pretty old spring. So old the door was very difficult to open. Asking the sellers to get that replaced was at the top of the list of stuff to do before we signed the papers. I didn't like the idea of that thing going while working on something in the garage.
"I was home alone in the summer as a kid and I hear people on our roof and trucks in the drive way. I call my mom from underneath her bed and whisper that there are men walking on the roof. My mom: "oh yea, the roofers are coming today." 😑
Boom & Sparks
"So there I was, 11 years old, home alone. I hear a creaking noise from the garage so I grabbed a broom and went to chase off whatever animal it was. Cue me standing in the garage looking around... deadly silent. Then BAM!! Sparks fly across my vision and the sound of two planets crashing into each other assaulted my ears. Have you ever seen a half naked 11 year old white boy run when scared? Usain bolt could not have beat me in that moment."
"A tree branch crashed through my window when I was home alone playing Xbox.
I've always thought I would be prepared for like an intruder or something, but if that was a dude that just like did that SWAT rope swing thing through my window, he would have had enough time to walk over to me, grab a gun from my hand, load it, and shoot me before I figured what the heck went on.
I was like one of those goats that faint when you scream at them."
It's Me!in the mirror dancing GIF by Sarah's Scribbles Giphy
"I was at a friend's house (watching her cats) and suddenly someone stood on the balcony, right when I walked down the hallway. I stopped dead and stood frozen for minutes, heartbeat up in my throat. Turns out it was my reflection...Took me solid 10 minutes."
"I was babysitting my little sister. We were both watching television. All of a sudden I hear gun shots and bullets ricocheting from the window security bars. A moment later I hear moaning and screams coming from my front door. It was a drive by shooting. Three teenagers where shot up and managed to crawl to my door seeking help. As a 14 year old at the time. It was something I was definitely not prepared to handle."
Let who In?!
"I was home alone since my husband was away on deployment. One night as I was falling asleep both my dog and I heard someone on the porch walking around. My dog flipped out and I decided to go downstairs. I grabbed my gun out of the safe and headed downstairs. About two thirds of the way down I saw the man through the front door windows. We locked eyes and he said, "Let me in." I told him that he needed to leave. Again, "Let me in."
I told him he needed to leave and that I was calling the cops. "Let me in." I told him I that had a gun. "So do I" and he lifted up a gun and aimed it at me. I fired my gun through the window but missed him. He ran off. The cops found him a few blocks from my house a little bit later. His gun ended up not being loaded. Still. Most terrifying crap ever."
"I had a massive tub of lego fell over while i was eating downstairs. I kid you not, it sounded like somebody went through the window. I was frozen on the spot thinking i was going to be killed or kidnapped or something. An hour and a bit passed and i thought they must have left. I slowly went around the house looking for evidence of a break in. Then i saw the lego all over the floor."
Texas in the 90's
"I was 11 and home alone. I got out of the shower to discover my house had been broken into. Teen from down the street and his sister were in the living room ransacking the place. My dad kept one of those glass door gun cabinets at the end of the hall by the bedroom door. I took out the first gun I could grab and yelled at them. Dude turned around with a knife but dropped and ran when he saw the rifle.
Coward shoved his sister down as he bolted back out the door. The girl stayed on the ground screaming as I called the cops. They both got arrested over a pocket full of change the guy had shoved in his hoodie.
This was in the 90s in Texas and my mom was more pissed about the broken door and them touching her change jar than anything."
Hisssss...Turn Around Reaction GIF by Dr. Donna Thomas Rodgers Giphy
"A big, freshly-shed rattlesnake skin on the floor in front of the tv where my kids were watching cartoons.
NO! 😳This was in small town Texas, and I had cowboys and deputies and farmers and HS quarterbacks all stomping through my house, from under the porch to the rafters. We did not sleep well for weeks— and we all wore boots in the house."
Out of the Basement
"When I was like, 7 or 8, I was taking a bath when I saw a guy walk out from the basement onto the back porch, and out the back yard. Turns out we were being robbed when we got home, the guy hid in the basement for like an hour or two until he made his escape. He had stolen a bunch of hunting knives and stuff like that."
"Just moved in to our brand new home, my husband goes out to pick up dinner. I'm just setting up our tv and all of a sudden a man comes down the flipping stairs. I scream at the top of my lungs and run for the front door. He screams at the same time. Thankfully the neighbors next door were outside so I squeak out that there is a strange man in my house. He comes out of my house and turns out he works for the development, and had been fixing an upstairs bathroom. My husband forgot to tell me he was there. 🤦🏽♀️"
"Once i was up early so i went watch some tv, it was dark and i saw a pile of blankets on the floor so I stepped on them to reach the tv and a strange man jumped out! I screamed the house down, turns out it was just my sister's bf that she forgot to tell me was staying there."
Through the Peephole
"I was super high cleaning the apartment one day, probably around 1pm. So the music was up, I was in my zone.
Then someone started slamming on the door. It kept going. I stopped the music, thinking that maybe it was just a neighbor who wanted the music turned down. I didn't feel like answering the door because 1) i smoked a ton so was in no place to 2) covid
Stopped the music, went quiet. But the aggressive knocking did NOT stop.
So I looked through the peep hole, smaller girl a bit bigger than my stature. Never seen her before, and I live in a complex with 6 units. So I know what my neighbors look like. But she keeps knocking. Being stupid, I opened the door. She just stared, asked where Jon was. I told her I don't know, there's no Jon here. She just stood and stared at me, definitely on something. I tell her to try down the hall, since I think there might be one that lives down there. I slowly go to close the door and she legit shoves her foot in the crack and starts to shove.
So I start to struggle back, we are both actually wrestling with this door. I just go "what?? Can I help you?? I'm trying to close the door!"
She stops and relents a bit and does some weird eye shit and goes "oh... okay" then walks off.
Locked and bolted that mess real quick. But yeah don't open doors to strangers."
Out of the Cagekathy bates misery GIF Giphy
"Our garter snakes had gotten out of their cage. We searched everywhere but couldn't find them. Finally my husband went to bed and I stayed up watching TV for a while.
We had one of those gigantic old console TVs we had gotten when someone was throwing it out. Suddenly one of the dust-covered wires came slithering out from behind the TV. I had read Stephen King's "Dolores Claiborne" not too long before, and in that book the crazy old lady thinks the wires in her house are coming alive. I had a moment of "holy crap, it's actually happening!" before I realized it was one of the snakes.
That got my blood pumping, you better believe."
"They put a warning out on the radio in my hometown a few years ago to call the police and NOT stop if you saw a car seat with a child in it abandoned on the highway. There was a slew of robberies where a group of guys would be hiding in the bushes waiting to jump anyone who stopped. The car seat just had a doll and an audio recording of a baby crying. Something like 6 or 7 women got attacked for stopping to check it out.
I still get chills thinking about it."
I Hear it too!
"In the house alone one night and from my room I hear deep, gutteral voices. Go in to check and no one is there. This happens a few more times that evening. After checking and finding nothing... again I stand perplexed and then I hear the voices again, from my stereo speakers! Turns out it was a nearby Ham operator coming across, somewhat, on my stereo speakers."
"On my first week in my new apartment, my drunk upstairs neighbor tried to break into my house, thinking that I was in her apartment. I literally had to let her take a walk into my half boxed livingroom at 3 am, and then walk her home.
She's a good lady, just had a bad day. Never had any other problems with her, or her family, but Goddamn, did I poop myself that day."
The Left Behinds
"Late at night I had both my cat and my girlfriend's dog start freaking out. I got up, grabbed my gun and flashlight and went through the house. Both the animals were growling and hissing at one of the vents so I went over and shined my light into it and saw a cat. Turns out the previous tenants left their cats and there was a way for animals to get into the ventilation. Fun stuff."
The Creepy HeadThats My Fetish Glow GIF by NETFLIX Giphy
"Someone trying to break open the window, woke up because my dog was barking, looked at the window and seen someone's head staring at me... he ran away and left a couple of tools."
"This year my Pipes had Frozen in my mobile home. My partner had gone to work so I was home alone dealing with this issue. I order to get them back running you have to go under the trailer and turn on a heater to heat it up so it can run. The only access to get under the trailer is by getting under the deck. I dug out a large hole in the snow under the deck and had just enough room to squeeze under as I started to shimmy towards the door to get under the ice build up became more dense and soon enough the deck and the ground had me stuck. I am not even claustrophobic and I was having a huge panic attack.
I reached for my phone but realized I had left it back in the house. The only thing I did have with me was a pry bar to get the door open so I managed to grab it and start to chip the ice away under me. Eventually after 10 minutes I was freed and got the hell out of there. The kicker to the story, my pipes were not even frozen a city water main had broke so none of this was necessary."
"Had whooping cough and after a coughing fit I was not able to breathe in again. Luckily I tried to force one more cough out of my empty lungs, it worked.
Best breath I took in my life. 10/10 would breath again."
One Foot In
"I am an ex-Mormon. I was in my 20's and living at home, my parents were out of town and I had the whole house dark. I hear the doorbell ring and see a guy a little younger than me that I barely knew from my old ward standing behind a complete stranger I had never met. The stranger introduced himself as a new leader in the ward and said he wanted to come in and talk about the church. I declined, said goodbye, and started to close the door.
As I was closing the door he put his foot in the way and tried to force his way into the house while trying to tell me they were friends and that they just wanted to talk. I had to get more forceful with him to finally get him to leave.
It was completely inappropriate for him to even be there and even worse that he was trying to force his way into the house."
"Hey over here you idiot!"
"I woke up one morning to a guy staring into my window right at me. I jumped up of course, ran to the kitchen, grabbed a knife, and went to confront the guy. I found out that there was going to be a house remodeled across the street and he had came to the wrong house. He apologized profusely and a coworker of his yelled out "Hey over here you idiot!" So that turned from terror into comedy.
I also have sensor lights in my hallway. I was sitting one time, felt a really cold sensation so I turned around. The sensor lights were turning on 1 by 1 as if somebody was walking towards me. It was scary but I don't really believe in ghosts and I didn't see anybody coming so I just brushed it off as a malfunction."
Don't Say AnythingGIF by moodman Giphy
"When i was 12, a drunk neighbor tried winning back the affections of his ex by beating on her window with a plastic chair, shouting "come out here you stupid witch!" at around midnight. Then threatened to harm anyone who tried to stop him."
Running head on...
"First time living alone, took my dog in the backyard early morning (still completely dark out) before work. Heard a bloodcurdling scream from next door and looked over to see the figure of someone jumping out the first floor window and proceed to start hopping the fence into my yard. Burglar was coming right at me. Luckily my dog was skittish as hell and was already on her way back to me cause of the scream. Slammed the door and locked it and proceeded to call 911.
Somehow I called 911 before the guy who was burglarized because he was in shock."
"I moved into a house at the beginning of last year and decided I wanted to get a security system. I got one that included cameras, door and window sensors, motion detectors, etc. Installing everything myself was pretty easy and straightforward. For the first week or so, if the alarm is tripped, no police are called and there's no response whatsoever, so you can get used to it. On my 3rd night in the house at about 2:30-3:00am, the alarm starts blaring and I remember jumping out of the bed in a panic.
I couldn't believe my luck that I was really getting robbed and a lot of stuff was still in moving boxes for the guy. I turn off the alarm, grab my gun and clear the whole house. There wasn't a sign of entry anywhere to be seen.
Turns out that one of the sensors I put up wasn't secured properly so it fell off the door and assumed that the door was "opened" in the night. Felt real stupid after that."
"One day my mom left the house and the tv was not working so I went upstairs to play with my legos and a car ran into the backyard fence and a wooden pole flew into the window that was right next to the couch we use to watch tv And all the glass fell onto the couch and floor."
A Hard Night
"I was in my apartment which was on the top floor of a 4 story building which had a slanted roof with mexican tile shingles. I heard what sounded like a possum or raccoon jumping on the roof. All of sudden I hear a loud boom and feel the apartment shake. All of a sudden there was a man on my balcony; this balcony had an 1.5 foot overhang from the roof and no discernible way to get from the roof to the balcony. He was screaming that people were shooting at him (I had not heard any gunfire). I yell through the glass to get down behind the wall as I was calling the cops for him.
Not 10 seconds passed when I heard the glass sliding doors crash as he threw a potted plant into my living room. I happen to be in the kitchen and grabbed a knife while I yelled, "get the f**k out or I will f**king kill you." He ran toward the door and out. The cops took another 10 minutes to show up, while other cops caught the guy.
The 25 year old guy skipped his meds and ran out of his parents house believing he was being hunted.
It was hard to sleep for a few nights."
"Spider running out of shorts I just took off to get a shower while no one at home."
the man in the mirror
"When I was younger (probably 14 years old) I was playing hide and seek with my little brother (about 4 years old). I was hiding and he was taking quite a while to find me. I was hiding in his room which was right next to mine. He suddenly comes running into his room (where I'm hiding) and goes straight to where I was. I asked him "how'd you know where I was?" He says "the man in your mirror told me where you were hiding."
Can I come in?
"I was left home alone to watch the dogs while my parents did a carriage job. I was sitting near a window watching random videos on my phone. Being home alone at night always makes me uneasy, and the fact I was watching the occasional horror game did not help. I looked over at the window and saw two glowing eyes staring in at me. I literally screamed and almost fell out of my seat.
It was my cat. She wanted to come inside."
11 FlightsTom Hanks Reaction GIF Giphy
"The apartment above mine caught fire. I thought the fire alarm was just a test until I heard something explode directly above me. I grabbed my cat and bolted down 11 flights of stairs to see flames bursting 10 feet out of the balcony above my unit."
There are some questions that illustrate such vulnerability, such open tragedy on the part of the asker that we fend off tears while we come up with an appropriate answer.
Sometimes the question comes from someone who's been so steeped in struggle that they need help understanding that another possible reality exists.
Sometimes it's a question that cuts right to our own core with startling efficiency.
Whatever form it takes, it stops us in our tracks and we're likely to remember it for quite awhile after.
Curious to hear the saddest examples, Redditor julylovestory asked:
"What question has someone asked you that secretly broke your heart?"
Many Redditors responded by sharing the sad questions uttered by young children.
Kids just have the knack for cutting straight through to the essence of it all.
A Tragic Conscientiousness
"As we passed the toy aisle at the store, 'I know you don't have much money right now, but maybe when you get some we could come back and get a toy?' "
"I was not doing well financially back then and my daughter brought me to tears in the middle of the store."
Puzzled and Sad
"First day of preschool for my three year old son. The first time he would ever be away from Mom & Dad at the same time."
"I brought him to the room and expected a meltdown, but instead he confidently strutted, and I do mean strutted into the classroom."
"Three hours later, I picked him up. He was ok until we got to the car when he said, in quiet sad voice 'l thought you were coming with,' followed by an even sadder quieter 'Why did you leave me?' "
" 'Can I wish for my sister?' - A 10-year-old student of mine whose big sister died 4 years ago. We were working on an activity about dreams and aspirations for their futures."
How Bad Must It Be?
"I was like 22 and it was probably 10pm or so at a Walmart. I was on my way to a party and stopped for beer. The store was fairly empty and as I was in the beer aisle, I see this kid completely by himself."
"He was about 5 and at first I thought it was kind of funny because he was trying to pick up a case of beer. I waited like 30-60 seconds, looking around for this kid's mom/dad to come get him. A couple people walked right by him like it was normal, so then I started getting worried. I picked up my two cases of beer and walked over and kindly asked him if he lost his mom or needed help."
"The kid completely ignored the question and instead was thoroughly impressed that I was strong enough to carry two cases of beer. Eventually an employee noticed and came over as well. I told her everything I knew and she took over and told him that she was going to bring him to find his mom."
"As he was walking away he kept looking back at me and I smiled and said goodbye. The kid stopped and said 'can I just come home with you? I don't like my mom.' "
"I was caught off guard so I just laughed and told him the lady was going to help him. Now I'll never know the full story, or what happened to him but the more I think about it - that kid more than likely had a pretty shi**y childhood."
"I mean, the store wasn't busy and it was late at night on a weekday. It really makes you wonder why he was there in the first place, how he got separated from his mom and why would he ask to go with a complete stranger instead of worrying about where his mom was?"
"It still makes me sad. Hope everything worked out for the little dude."
Others talked about the times when they or somebody else realized just how tragic their own circumstances were.
"My ex asked me what I liked to do with my family growing up."
"Made me realize my family never did anything together and I literally had no answer to such a basic question."
Seeing Another Version
"During college, parents took a friend and I out to dinner. Very normal dinner, chit chatted about whatever. After we left and were walking back to my car, he turns to me and says 'Is that what a normal relationship is like?' "
"We talked more after that, I had met his parents a few times and they seemed strict but never seemed to have a terrible relationship. Turned out apparently his dad had cheated on his mom multiple times, dad had zero respect for any of my friends sisters and essentially expected them to do all the housework while the men did 'guy stuff.' "
"Hunting, training for sports, school, etc. Turned out his childhood was pretty fu**ed, dad was never around and he had to essentially be the father figure in the house. As the oldest child, never really saw a normal loving relationship that he could look up to."
"My friend is a really nice guy, still has some messed up views of relationships though. I never realized how 'abnormal' my very normal family/childhood was."
A Better Place
" 'You've never beaten me or told me I couldn't do something. Is that normal?'
"My first girlfriend told me that. I have never felt such a wave of anger, sadness, and heartbreak wash over me like I did when I heard that"
And some people discussed the time a question destroyed their social confidence.
Worst Teacher Ever
"I have a stutter, when I was a kid I had to read a page of a book to the class. I stuttered, and the teacher said 'can you even read' and that fu**ing broke my 13 year old heart."
"No one takes stuttering seriously."
There's the Answer
"When I was 19, I hung out with a cute girl from my high school that I never got to hang with when we were in school. Had a great day together, and that night she asked, 'can we be like secret friends or something? I don't really hang out with people like you.' "
"Never hung out again."
Comparing and Contrasting
" 'Oh, are you the girl with the hot sister ?' " -- JustehOK
"I worked in a department with two Melissas. One day, I was sitting next to one Melissa when we overheard another coworker say to someone, 'have you seen little Melissa?' "
"The other Melissa got kind of a defeated look in her eye and said, 'oh, I'm big Melissa.' " -- EarhornJones
It's a list that's sad enough to leave one wondering about the questions they've received that struck them as particularly hopeless.
Sometimes, though, that vulnerability can be the start of accepting new realities and new possibilities.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
If you live on this earth and you're fortunate enough to form long-lasting relationships with different people, chances are you'll know the pain of heartbreak. It's an unavoidable fact of life.
We are not guaranteed to stay with one person forever, as we were reminded once Redditor disturbance of mirrors asked the online community,
"People whose long-term relationship faded, what was the final straw that made you realize it was time to call it a day?"
"The last time..."
"When she 'broke up' with me for the 12th time.
We had a long-distance relationship and whenever we had an issue or a disagreement, instead of engaging in a conversation with me about it, she would say we were done and shut me out for two or three days before coming back and manipulating me into groveling for her forgiveness. The last time, I just said no to going back and stuck to it. She freaked out and tried to drive 6 hours to my place at 2:00 a.m... I got a call from her mom saying she had left in the middle of the night as a head's up and, upon finally getting ahold of her when she was just a couple of hours away, I was able to convince her to turn back.
That relationship f***** me up for a while but, once I began dating my now fiancee, it was unbelievable to me how wonderful a real, loving relationship with healthy communication can be."
"Her brother was living with us..."
"Mine was not a slow burn like most seem to be, but a very definitive moment.
Her brother was living with us and this was right when WiFi was becoming available to the general public. We couldn't afford it cuz we were broke kids, so her brother would take my GF's MacBook (it was a gift) and sit on a nearby bus bench and leech off someone's unsecured WiFi.
Well, one day we get a call from her sister and she says we need to get home immediately. Turns out some guys came up and asked him for change for a $20 and when he told them he didn't have it they tried to snatch the Mac and jump in their car.
He knew it wasn't his so he held onto it and tried to get it back but they were too much. He had gotten dragged by the car, kicked in the head, and then had his leg run over. He was in pretty bad shape.
As we turn the corner (didn't know what had happened yet) GF sees cop cars and an ambulance and says "This better not have anything to do with my Mac. We walk in and he's visibly in bad shape and she is just immediately "Did you lose my Mac?" I'll never forget his face. He was so ashamed and felt terrible and just started crying. She however started screaming my computer! My computer! And hitting him. To the point where the cops considered arresting her. It was an instant eye-opener."
"I'd sit in my car..."
"I'd sit in my car after work playing on my phone for like an hour because I just needed a break before going inside and dealing with him."
That would do it.
"I would find any excuse..."
"I would find any excuse to work late or sometimes go sit at a bar by myself just to avoid the misery at home. We divorced."
"He was a workaholic..."
"He was a workaholic to the point that I saw him about 6 days per month."
"Somewhere between giving up on small talk and not looking forward to the weekends anymore."
That's no way to live.
"It really forced us..."
"Honestly it was the pandemic. It really forced us to actually spend time together and I realized we kind of just didn't do much together at all. I had spent years thinking it was cool that we kept our own friends and space but once those distractions were taken away it was just really clear to me that we were more roommates than a couple."
"When I realized..."
"When I realized I was needed and not wanted. Constantly trying to make someone happy who didn't want to be happy."
This one hurts. I've been there myself. (And I have also been that person––I thankfully got help.)
"We lived together..."
"We lived together but lived completely separate lives. Basically a housemate I shared a bed with. Happened twice to me so far."
"I would have moved mountains for him..."
"I knew it was over when I cared more about his wellbeing than he cared about his own wellbeing. I would have moved mountains for him if it made his life easier and he just continuously put himself in shi!ty situations. I eventually just gave up. I can't be with someone who doesn't care about themselves. Thank God that's over."
If you think you might be stuck in a pointless or unhealthy relationship, it's worth evaluating your options. And it's never worth sticking around and risking your emotional and mental health.
Have some stories of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
There is always that "one." There is always going to be that person.
That person who you will always remember. And when they are the one who you regret losing most... they are the ghost that will haunt you forever.
I have a few escapees. I'll never know how it would've turned out. But that is part of why I'm haunted. I need to discuss....
Redditor u/AssistantNo1733 wanted to discuss all the times we've lost in love by asking:
Who's the one who got away?
Do we even have a clue that they're the "one" that got away? How long until it sinks in? And how do we not know there isn't another "one" coming behind them? I have no answers. Just asking...
The DraftEpisode 1 Omg GIF by RuPaul's Drag RaceGiphy
"The girl who summoned up the nerve to ask me out towards the beginning of high school. I was so humiliated by the life my family was living that I stalled until she gave up."
"Betsy, if by some stroke of dumb luck you're reading this... I'm so sorry. It was 25-27 years ago, but I still hate myself for that. You were beautiful, intelligent, a good person, and if I had anything resembling a stable, presentable home I would've said yes in a heartbeat... I had a crush on you since 7th-grade 'intro to drafting.'
I Love Her
"Weird, I was just confiding in my mom about this last night. I'm late but for catharsis's sake I'm going to post. My first girlfriend is a classic case of you don't know what you have until it's gone. She's the complete package. Beautiful, intelligent, compassionate, and so kind. We started dating when I was 17 and broke up when I was 21."
"For reference I'm 30 now. I was an idiot. I wanted to play the field. I wanted to party and hook up with college girls. It was fun at first but after a while I felt this gnawing hole in my heart. The feeling of doubt crept up slowly and still, a decade later my chest feels tight thinking about it."
"I didn't realize until my later serious relationships that getting along with your SO's family is so important. Her mom and step dad genuinely treated me like a part of their family. It's not a stretch to say I literally grew up with these people. I spent some of my most formative years with them. Birthdays, Thanksgivings, Christmases, you name it. They celebrated me and my accomplishments. They genuinely cared about me. Just amazing, salt of the earth, lovely people."
"Her birthday was in March and I sent her a text and we ended up talking for a bit. She's happily married and stable with a daughter and a second on the way. I'm genuinely so happy for her. She deserves happiness. I just wish I was a part of that. Sitting at work 10 years later I'm tearing up. I numbed myself out to it for years, it's so strange to me that I've been so stuck on her lately. Is this normal?"
15 Years Later
"My very first real love. I was a teenager and I didn't really know how to be comfortable in myself or with myself. I played silly teen girl games and lost him even as a friend. Now 15 years later I still think about R from time to time. I genuinely hope he's happy in his life."
"Edit: Wow this blew up while I was sleeping. Thanks for all the sweet words and to everyone with their "one" congratulations! I suppose I hadn't looked him up on social media because I'm scared, scared he won't respond, scared he will respond, scared he'll think I'm a stalker. I'm in a happy relationship now, but what if... Etc etc etc. But I'll give it a Google."
Missed You Muchrhythm nation dance GIF by Janet JacksonGiphy
A girl I dated in high school. Went on a date one time she took me out parking and I was too stupid to realize it.
"She always talked about moving away as soon as she got finished with high school. I always thought I would stay in a little town the rest of my life. Turns out I was the one who left and move to another state. Later I heard that she had told someone that I knew that she thought that we would be married at some point. Missed it by that much."
Ok... I've been a bit blind to the light. People can be cruel, but also highly creative. Why not just lead with the truth? It'll always hurt more after lies.
Chuck E.Chuck E Cheese Wink GIFGiphy
"Ah the rare AskReddit question I can answer."
"I met a wonderful woman circa 2013-2015. We worked at what I can best describe as an upscaled Chuck E Cheese. Or ghetto Six Flags. Your choice."
"We hit it off instantly, though at the time I was rather romantically inept. Eventually, she says she's leaving to join the Air Force. I tell her I'll miss her, and wished her well. The thought of asking for her number so we could stay in contact didn't even cross my mind."
"Cue the next day, I stop for lunch on my way to work, and as I'm walking to my car I hear my name being called. I turn around, and it's her, running toward me. Universe giving me a second chance, right? Wrong. My dumb butt still didn't ask for her number. She looked a little upset, and I still think about her often. Desiree, I hope you're doing well."
"He was my first and last love. I was 16 and he was 18 when we met. We bounced around like idiots, on again off again, finally got together mid 20s. We both fell into bad habits - drugs and alcohol, more booze for me, more drugs for him. We had some bad things happen that were pretty detrimental to staying sober. We would split, reconcile, get sober, fall off the wagon, split, etc... repeat as necessary. We realized we were very bad for each other unless we could BOTH just get sober for ourselves, and split."
"Ten years later, I was sober for 7 years (still am, going on 18 years end of this month, actually! Woo, go me!) and he was beginning to come back, sober about a year. He contacted me, we met, talked about trying again. He said that once he had been totally clean for a year, we'd do it. That whole "Don't make any changes for a year" thing. I would visit him, tho, things were good."
"He woke up one morning feeling bad, thought he had the flu. (This was pre-now) I stayed around because he was sick, but neither of us thought he was drastically bad, just the flu, right? He got worse and worse, finally we called an ambulance because he got up from a nap and couldn't breathe. He died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Aortic dissection."
"He got away, but someday I'll see him again. I never stopped loving him, and him me. We just weren't good for each other."
Ce la vie...
"My most serious Ex."
"Don't think I truly understood love until I met her. Loved her more than I ever thought I could love anything. It eventually ended when she told me that, through no fault of my own, she had fallen out of love with me. That was 2 years ago, still hurts to think/talk about."
"Ce la vie..."
"I'm in the middle of trying to avoid that right now actually."
"It's not worth the heartache trust me. I fought to stay in a relationship for an entire year. If I would've just let her go the first time she wanted there would've been a lot less pain. We would've left on good terms. I would've lost a lot less sleep. Rip the band-aid off because once the band-aid starts peeling it's inevitable it'll fall off with time."
Sweet...Kim Tate Eye Roll GIF by EmmerdaleGiphy
Damn man why bring this up.
"My ex and I broke up over 3 years ago. Mutual breakup through a lack of communication on both ends I feel."
"Thought I was over that hill until this week she messaged just to say hey and ask an innocent question. We text for the best part of the day and it's brought up a lot of old feeling. Feeling pretty bitter sweet right now."
Love is a mess. Why even bother trying if you can't be true? It's not hard to just spell out the situation. And if you're the one needing to put together the words... look closer. The dialogue shouldn't be difficult.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
What are the odds you'd click on this link today?
What was the biggest coincidence that made you question the fabric of reality?
There's small coincidences, occurrences so minute that you wouldn't even notice them if you weren't paying attention. However, once someone makes a big deal out of them then there's no other choice but to acknowledge that what just happened was spectacular.
Each Having A Buddy Coming To Town
"My friend and I were on a road trip a few years ago and needed a place to stay. We both told each other we had a friend in the city we were going through, so we figured we'd be able to crash with one of them. Turns out our two friends were roommates and had both been telling each other that they had a friend coming to town soon."
What's That Got To Be? A 1 in 1000 Chance?
"Several years ago I was at a coffee shop with some friends and one of them had an ipad, another friend went to unlock it and asked him what his 4 digit unlock code was, so I just blurted out 4 random digits pretending like I knew it, and it actually worked. I had never unlocked it before or knew of the same numbers being used for anything else, or his phone number, etc."
Both Probably Assumed What The Best Time Was
"I passed out after receiving a flu shot when I was 28. The nurse who helped me up kept asking if I wanted my mom. It seemed like a really weird thing to offer an adult woman - the option to have her mother phoned and brought in - so I was really confused and getting progressively more annoyed at her repeatedly asking...
...until my mom walked up to me. She had the appointment after mine to get vaccinated. The nurses assumed we had come together, but neither of us knew about the other's appointment, and we lived an hour away from each other in different cities."
Living in such a big world can lead you to the conclusion that math is silly and odds are never in your favor. With over seven billion people roaming around, chances of meeting someone of significance?
Less than you think.
A Simultaneous Love Of Traveling
"This guy I went to grade school and high school with, an acquaintance at best. I've seen him in 5 different locations in different countries throughout the last 15 years.
Disney World when I was a kid.
Some beach bar in Thailand.
The Bean in Chicago.
A pub in Budapest.
A library in San Jose, Costa Rica.
We've become friends due our love of traveling, but neither of us post on social media and neither of us communicated with each other our plans to travel. We never talked outside of the random meetings. Now if I see him, its like the world wants us to have a beer together. haha"
"I Mean, The Crash, Yeah, But How Have You Been?"
"My dad lives in a national park here in Australia. It's farmland that's grandfathered in. It's the remnants of a volcano that blew itself up very violently, so it's very hilly terrain.
One day we were sitting out on the deck, when we see a hang-glider come down halfway down the valley, and it didn't look like a nice landing. "Sh-t, we better see if he's alright, they don't land anywhere near here"
So we get in the car, drive for about 10 minutes to reach the spot. We head over to the guy who is standing by a very damaged glider. The pilot is staring at us incredulously, he stammers "F-ck, Jack, is that you?".
My dad, who hasn't seen his childhood friend for 35 years shouts "F-ck, Tim, is that you?".
They both grew up in Greymouth, NZ. Found each other randomly after a glider crash in NSW, Australia."
Takes A Wedding To Bring People Together
"My wife and I were looking to hire a caterer for our wedding and when we met, my wife and her started talking about their lives a bit.
Turns out they had both literally grown up on the same street, in a city of 10 million people, on the other side of the world. Both had left the city around a decade before immigrating to our current country.
They knew the same people, had hung out at the same coffee place, attended the same church. They even used to grab mangoes off the same large tree that hung over the wall of one of the large houses in the neighbourhood.
But they had never met one another until meeting on almost the exact opposite side of the planet, in a small town of about 50,000 people."kor_hookmaster
What we can gain from these experiences is a coincidence will occur more than you think, you just have to have the eyes sharp enough to spot them.
But how would you explain these?
Position Is Key
"I dialed my mum on my mobile when I was on public transport and accidentally swapped two numbers around.
The person I called was on the same carriage."
"Go on, tell us what happened then!"
"So I was listening to my phone and at the exact moment it started the ringing sound I heard a phone start ringing and I thought it was a coincidence but then the phone answered and it wasn't mum.
All I said was "Oh, are you on the Upfield train?" and they said "Yes, who's this?" but I got shy and I hung up.
Poor guy must have been so confused."
Universal Echoes Bringing You Closer Together
"One time, me and my dad were discussing his friend while out driving at night without many other cars on the road. As we were talking, we pulled up to a red light, and the car waiting in front was my dad's friend. He didn't even live close to there."
Extremely Unlucky Odds. Go Buy A Lottery Ticket.
"A couple of years ago I was visiting my hometown and decided to sit on a bench at my favorite park. As I was sitting, I felt something land on my head. Bird poop. After heading home and washing my hair, I went back into town. While I walked around, I watched as a guy got hit with a drop of sky sh-t. As I was laughing about the apparent irritable bowel syndrome of the birds in my town, a bird flying right over me drops a fat sh-t on my head."
There's no magic at play. All of these happenstances can be explained away with simple math and rudimentary probability.
Still, it's fun to live when you're in the moment.