People Who Were In A Coma Explain What It Was Like To Rejoin The World
You see it over a over in movies and TV shows. Someone is ill or in an accident and goes into a coma. Then one day, they're wide awake. It makes for good drama, but what is the experience of waking from a coma really like?
Reddit user TylerBatemanjr asked "Redditors who have woken up from a coma, what was it like entering the world again?"
Here are some insights from the people who know what it was like.
Being on a ventilator... well it's weird not to need to breathe and when they try to remove you from it some poor nurse gets to spend the day reminding you to breathe because you really don't feel like you need to. In fact, breathing for me was an annoyance that kept waking me up and I would only take a breath to get the nurse to let me go back to sleep. I lost weight, a lot of it, and was incredibly weak upon waking up. As a mid 20s person, I couldn't get off a couch without help. Also, eating was... well, when you haven't had to eat in a while it's hard to get that system working again as well and I had to start with soft baby food types of stuff and liquids and then bland stuff and work back up to eating regular foods again. I ate a lot of potatoes because they seemed to be the easiest to take. None of them were long comas thankfully. The longest was only a couple of weeks so there wasn't any major re-entering society with big changes. But it was very disorienting because I lost time and my sense of time and my ability to be a normal person who could just do simple things like eating or standing. I was so weak and so messed up from the badness that led to the comas and the whole not moving (though there are therapists that do come in and move you and stretch you to prevent you from curling up and getting stuck all constricted) thing.
After a week of an induced coma... it wasn't real.
I went in the day before Cataclysm came out for World of Warcraft and I was so ready for it. I had taken off work and didn't have school that day, had snacks and drinks at the ready. Even got the collector's edition physically mailed.
Went into a coma, woke up, asked if Cataclysm came in and mom said yeah, last week. What? It was so surreal to me that a week had passed when I felt like I'd taken a few hour nap. I was freaking out a bit on the inside when the doctor came in and pulled my arterial line out.
When I was 16 in 1998, I was in a coma for 3 days. I'm from New York, but was spending 3 weeks on the Navajo reservation in Arizona. Sometime during week 2, I got sick, and ended up having 2 seizures. I was helicoptered to a hospital in Flagstaff.
When I woke up from my coma , I recall it being sort of like the scene from E.T.; I had tubes on/in me, I sat up in bed and started pulling them off of me. My parents, who had flown in, scared to death I'm sure, calmed me down, which wasn't too hard.
I don't remember much of the next few days. Apparently I read the same newspaper 3 days in a row.
Apparently I woke up looked at my mum said 'Where's dad!?' then fell back asleep.
Never realized I was out. Woke up confused in hospital. Was in coma for approx 2 weeks.
I was in an induced coma for about 3 months or so.
I remember all my senses coming online very strongly when I woke up - I was super uncomfortable in that hospital bed, the lights were super bright and my mouth was super dry.
Turns out I had an ischaemic attack. As of today I've pretty much recovered. I still do speech therapy, which I do in the form of a YouTube gaming channel, because I do have a bit of stutter.
I was in and out of a coma for about two weeks. I say about because I don't actually know how long, I was never told the exact amount of time. I had a life-threatening case of internal bleeding caused by clostridium difficile and sepsis. The first few days was a genuine coma, after that it was induced by the doctors with ketamine.
Waking up was kind of like emerging from deep waters. It took me a few days to actually be fully aware, I attribute that to the meds. Before that, it felt like time was skipping at random. The last proper memory I had was being surrounded by doctors on a table with these insanely bright high-powered lights pointed at me. I was sweating from the heat of them but still felt like I was freezing, because of all the blood I'd lost. Then I remember a doctor cauterizing my nose to stop the blood coming from there and even through all the pain of my body trying to tear itself apart, having a white-hot chunk of whatever shoved into my nose was still enough to make me scream.
After that I was out for at least a week, then I started to come round for a few moments at a time. I remember looking down and seeing two catheter lines in both my arms and two in my chest. They'd ran out of space so they even put one in my foot. As they slowly lowered the dosage of tranquilizers I woke up more and more, downside of that being that I could suddenly feel all the pain I'd been too doped up to register until then. That was fun.
My coma was 3 weeks long due to a traumatic brain injury (TBI) from a car accident. I don't remember waking up.
I actually don't remember the whole first week and a half after waking up, so I only go off of how people tell me I was.
I do have a memory of believing that I was actually probably put under for a number of years and that my loved ones were trying to make me think it was only three weeks, and that something terrible had happened and they didn't want me to find out... I guess it made me paranoid during that time.
Was in a coma for two days, but I don't remember 4.
The following month is just a haze due to painkillers and multiple surgeries. It almost felt like going back in time. I had just started my first week of college and was staying in the dorms.
Once I started having clear memories again I was living back at home, had no job, and spent my days doing nothing but wallowing in pain and depression. Like freshmen year of high school all over again, plus pain.
I was in a medically induced coma in September 2012 for a few days.
When I woke up a few days later all my little memories blurred into one another, I just remember lots of faces all around me of worried people. I remember thinking how convenient this had happened when my mum was on a holiday so she could be there. She wasn't on a holiday.
When I came to I couldn't remember very much about myself or my life. And my memories for the month beforehand were just gone altogether. As time passed I was slowly able to piece things together again but it was really weird, I would just be eating cereal and then suddenly: "Oh yeah I studied psychology for 2 years at university", boom a whole aspect of my life came back into my brain. This happened almost continuously for a couple of months.
I couldn't have caffeine, or anything that might stress out or change my heartbeat until I went for a follow up in December to confirm there weren't any permanent issues caused. Which luckily there were not! I'm fine now but I would say it was 4 months before I really felt like me again. And I never got those 2 weeks back.
Out of Country Experience
I was in a coma for 2 weeks. I remember being sick and calling my grandparents to tell them I'm sick. And that's the last I remember.
Next time I wake up in the hospital, but for some reason I think I'm in Spain (I was in my country of Sweden). I don't know if the dreams were at the end of the coma or after I had woken up. But they were not like regular dreams. They felt more like a bizarre alternate reality, where I was in a hospital and stuff was happening, that couldn't actually be happening. Very weird and I can still recall them a decade later, clear as day.
As for when I woke up I was in a bed, couldn't move my left arm, and my legs was seriously in bad shape. It took me some weeks to get the ability to walk again. I remember after waking up watching espn, bowling and baseball (I've never been that bored before or after). And I remember the first food I got to eat from my mom, in bed. It was satsumas, and it hurt like 10,000 hells, the acid really hurt my stomach. My stomach was not in good shape after those 2 weeks.
A little over a week on the other side. My hallucinations were pretty bad, I kept trying to fight everyone, everyone (friends, family and doctors) was out to hurt or humiliate me to the point they strapped me to the bed so I wouldn't hurt anyone or myself.
When I finally stopped hallucinating, I was so tired of running away, and fighting (think inception, or dreams), that I didn't even care much for the fact I had lost an arm, I was just glad it was over.
Slow & Steady
I was in a coma post-very severe seizure for 6 days. I didn't suddenly come out of the coma, but instead had more and more time awake. Initially I was drowsy and things were "fuzzy" and didn't make sense. But then they made more sense and I slept less and was more fully awake. It probably took about 4 further days to become properly awake.
I am a nurse and now see that in patients that come out of comas it is always gradual. Most comas are induced by medicines (we do it for pain management, healing, to be still).
One month in an anesthetic coma. It took me about three weeks to fully accept that I was back in reality and not another nightmare that would drag me back down.
I went down with both legs and woke up with only one. I was doped constantly and always uncomfortable. I hallucinated black bugs in my IVs. And going back to sleep pulled me back into the nightmares anyway. Of course I had trouble accepting reality. Over a year away from it and I'm still haunted by my time in a coma.
A regular coma might be like blinking your eyes, but a drug induced one left me trapped in looping nightmares of my own murder, torture, and imprisonment. I lived in hell for a month and tried to will myself dead countless times to escape. The drugs prevent lucid dreaming, but you are aware you're dreaming. That awareness didn't stop any of the death and torment.
I know what hell is. I don't advise a trip there. I'm an atheist, but all the same, I know hell more intimately than any brimstone spewing preacher ever did.
I was in a 4.5 day coma following a pneumothorax caused by over stressing my lung (I held in a cough while I had pneumonia and my lung collapsed ). Air pooled around my neck and eventually knocked me unconscious. Luckily I was already at the hospital waiting room waiting to be seen.
The first thing I remember and remember feeling is when they were removing a intubation tube from my throat. It hurt like hell... To make matters that much worse, not shortly after that they removed my catheter while I was awake. I remember asking my dad how long I was out and it only felt like a few hours but it was nearly 4 and a half days.
If I have anything to stress to everyone. DO NOT HOLD IN A COUGH OR SNEEZE. You will regret it.
How Old Am I?
I had a car wreck in July and broke the C2 and C3 in my neck, hip, and clavicle. I was in a coma for 2 months, scored a 3 on the Glasgow Coma Scale. (That's the lowest you can get, if I woke up they thought id be a vegetable or paralyzed for sure.)
All the doctors were shocked I lived they've since told me. But when I "woke up" from the 2 month coma I was scared. There was a Happy Birthday banner on the wall of the hospital so the first thought that came to my mind is. "Holy shit, what happened?" My 2nd question I asked myself is, "how old am I?"
For the record I'm a 28 year old female and for some reason 60 years kept running through my head, like I was 60 years old. I could tell I was in the hospital because of the room and I had a neck brace on, so I tried to stand up to walk to a mirror and realized I couldn't walk. Then, my next brilliant idea was just to scream as loud as I could so someone would know I was awake. I tried to scream but no sound came out. (I later found out the 2nd intubation paralyzed a vocal cord.) I didn't know what to do or how to find out what happened so my third bright idea was to look at the back of my hands to see if they'd aged a lot.
The backs of my hands looked about the same so I thought at most it had probably been a few years. I knew there was nothing I could do and was tired, so I just decided to go back to sleep.
I was in a coma, for a week after being in a serious car accident. I suffered 2 months memory loss, beginning the day of the accident, multiple broken bones, fractured skull, broke my jaw and fractured most parts of my face.
I woke up in ICU extremely confused and crying and thinking I was still dating my high school boyfriend and I couldn't understand why he wasn't with me. But what I do remember from the coma was that I was standing in a white room, it felt like I was waiting for something, but I didn't know what. But the worst memory was when I was still in a coma and I could feel people hold my hand and I could feel the nurses bathing me, but I couldn't move or open my eyes, I just couldn't do anything and it was terrifying!
5 day medically induced coma from something similar to meningitis. I woke up when I was ready after 5 days in ICU in the top ward in the south of England with a pump doing my heart for me, a tube forcing me to breath, a tube coming out of my manhood about twice the length of... well... you know! My whole family around me, doctors, nurses running around everywhere. I was awake at this point but still having hallucinations.
I went from being 13 stone (182 pounds) to 9 1/2 stone (133 pounds) in 5 days and then from 9 1/2 (133 pounds) to 9 (126 pounds) in the three days after that. Apparently when someone is in intensive care it usually takes 3-5 days in a regular ward for every day you were in ICU to recover as it can cause PTSD and other damage to people. I was so determined to get back on my feet I was discharged in 3 days. According to the doctor, if he was less busy in the morning and could get round to me earlier I would have broken records for recovery time.
While I was in the coma I died twice and yes I had the crazy white light experience however not in the traditional tunnel story. I also had out of body experiences. For weeks after I had awful nightmares, really really graphic stuff and some very very emotive nightmares.
No Concept of Time
When I was 6, I was in a house fire. I was in a coma for about a month. I remember going to bed the night before (the fire happened in the room I was sleeping in at night).
My first memory of waking up, I remember thinking everything was normal and had no idea what I had missed.
I remember getting this box of letters wishing me well and had no idea the amount of time I had missed.
Medically induced coma for over a week. During that time I had four surgeries and severe sepsis. A couple of organ systems started shutting down. I had horrible hallucinations/nightmares. When I woke up I didn't know where I was, what city I was in, what day it was, and thought my parents were imposters. They would always ask me if I knew my name, the date, etc. and I was wondering how they expected me to know. I physically couldn't move to hit the nurse call button. I couldn barely speak and had no sense of time. I thought I was in some ground floor building, maybe an ER, and there was an entire community on the roof. I also thought I was being held captive by some cult and that I had had a baby (my stomach was really swollen and they kept asking me if I was pregnant before procedures). They had me sitting up in a chair relatively early in the "just of the breathing tube" process and I couldn't hold my head up, pick my feet up and down, or squeeze a foamy thing. I had no idea how to read a clock at that time and had a distorted passage of time. It felt like I had to sit in that chair forever and I never knew when it was going to end. At the time I still didn't know where I was and why I was there. My parents kept showing me a video of my cats they had taken one day (they had been kicked out by my doctor to let me rest) and I kept wondering why they kept showing this horrible quality video! Apparently I would just look at them blankly or with puzzlement. They didn't know if I was all there.
All told I have a three week memory blank (a week while I was sick pre-coma, coma, and coming out of the coma). I slowly gained my senses back enough to recognize my parents and where I was.
After a month in ICU was taken to the normal unit. I had to take a swallow "test" at several points to see if I could eat. This consisted of me sitting up in a chair swallowing various viscosities of liquids. I still didn't have the strength to sit up well and basically leaned into a side board on the chair. I took the test a couple of times because I failed it at least once. I still couldn't move and someone had to feed me the liquid diet I was cleared for (slushies, clear soup). For awhile I had a call "button" (like an easy button) up by my head because I couldn't use a normal one. I remember watching my roommate walk to bathroom and complain how painful it was. I wanted to yell at them to suck it up, at least they could walk.
I finally gained a bit of movement back. I still couldn't talk very well. Psychiatrists came in to evaluate tremors I had. They had me write a sentence. Let me tell you that was so hard. I wrote "hello world" and they wanted something longer. They changed some medication and eventually I was able to grab my water cup to drink.
About every day physical therapy would come, make me sit up in bed (so hard), make me stand up with a walker and some belt assistance, and rotate over into a chair. I could measure time again and had to stay sitting for an hour. I would get dizzy rather easily though. After about a week they made me start upright physical therapy exercises. Standing for a few seconds, lifting my feet up and down (marching), kicking my feet out, and various other exercises. Eventually they had me stand and try and catch a ball that they bounced toward me or bounce the ball myself.
One day the physical therapist told me it was time to try and take a step. This was about seven weeks after I had been hospitalized total and a few after the medically induced coma. I've done many physical activities but that was about the hardest thing I've ever done. Sometimes around this time I began to put my history back together...what happened, the timeline, what was going to happen. My ability to speak and my relative intelligence returned.
Because of my extended hospital stay not moving, the length of time I didn't eat, and my illness my muscles had atrophied. I had no calf muscles. I was evaluated for "wasting" and eventually put on Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN)..aka IV feeding. I had a semi-port put into my chest that went straight to my heart in order to shuttle food in.
Eventually I was able to walk the length of the hallway. I was transferred to in-patient physical therapy. The gave me various speaking, eating, and cognitive evaluations which I fortunately passed. My sense of movement was messed up and I was constantly receiving messages from my eyes that I was moving ever so slightly (like a vibration). We worked on standing drills, focusing on different things to see if that would fix my issues. I was throwing up every other day, multiple times in a day, partially because of the motion (I later found out it was an infection but anyway...). Physical therapy worked with me on walking up stairs (that was terrifying and tough), walking a couple of hundred feet, walking over obstacles (like six inches off the floor), and getting in and out of a car. Occupational therapy worked with me on being able to stand to brush my teeth, changing my clothes, doing laundry, and manual dexterity. I was only in in-patient therapy for a week.
When I went home I had to climb one flight of stairs. My dad walked behind me as I walked one flight, having to pause several times. I did alot of sleeping while home, still on TPN (for various reasons). Standing up to brush my teeth was still tough. As was making it from my bed to my couch. Whenever we went anywhere for an extended period of time I would be in a wheelchair. I also couldn't lay on my side in bed like I used too...I didn't have the strength. I spent the next six months getting strength back, moving a bit more and more every day. When the event happened my doctors told me it would take two years for me to recover from the incident and they were right. It was 1.5 years before I was able to work at all, and even that was very much limited working.
Now I live somewhat normally but with some chronic medical conditions. I get tired very easily. I still find out things about my stay that I didn't know before, even though it's been a few years. The hallucinations/dreams have stayed with me and I have some PTSD-like symptoms from not knowing where I was, not being able to move, and not being able to communicate.
Books are life. Recently studies have been published that reading for fun, reading for knowledge, just interest in reading in general is down, and that is a tragedy.
We've become too obsessed with our binge watching and ADHD mindset that we've lost focus on one of life's greatest joys... literature.
There are some stories and books that should be a mandatory read for life. There should be age benchmarks that require knowledge of certain books in order to progress. I know, how "1984" of me. ;)
Redditor u/bugtanks33d wanted to hear about what literature we should all be familiar with sooner than later by asking:
What's a book everyone should read at least once in their lives?
One of my favorite books is "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe." It was a key element in unlocking what I could see with my imagination. No adolescent should go beyond sixth grade without knowing it. What else?
"ANNOUNCEMENT FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE READING THIS THREAD:"
"MANY OF THE BOOKS MENTIONED HERE ARE IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN AND IN AUDIO BOOK FORM. GO THROUGH YOUTUBE/RANDOMHOUSE/AUDIBLE/OVERDRIVE FOR ALL THE CLASSICAL GOODNESS YOU WANT."
"It almost totally eliminates the financial/time commitment that many will cite for not picking them up. I listen to books on double speed all the damn time. I am working my way through "A Tale of Two Cities" now."
Meaningwondering simon cowell GIF by X Factor GlobalGiphy
"Man's search for meaning - Viktor Frankl."
"The Phantom Tollbooth."
"Milo: "Many of the things I'm supposed to know seem so useless that I can't see the purpose of learning them at all."
"Princess of Sweet Rhyme: "...what you learn today, for no reason at all, will help you discover the wonderful secrets of tomorrow."
"Johnny's Got His Gun. It's so intense, but it's so good. Metallica's song One is based off this book. Guy has his arms and legs blown off, goes blind and deaf, and is left to live like that. I only read it once, but it's forever engrained into my memory. It hits you like a freight train."
"Surprised I haven't seen it here already so I'll add it... The Brother's Karamazov by Dostoyevsky. In Slaughterhouse 5 Vonnegut said it could teach everything that we needed to know about life, except that wasn't enough anymore."
"If the only thing that book did was make you marvel at how people centuries and oceans removed from you in time and place, could experience the exact same emotions about life as you did, it would be worth the read. There's so much more to it, but Dostoyevsky had such a knack for digging deep into universal human experience. And it's just a hell of a good story too."
Classicsdiva read GIFGiphy
"Speaking as somebody who isn't religious, the literary value of the Bible (and the Hebrew Bible) is severely underrated."
I took a class on it in college, with a prof who'd once allegedly gotten into a bar fight over Beowulf. We would sometimes spend half a class discussing a single verse or two because there's so much stuff going on under the hood."
I know so many of those. And sadly, I'm already behind in my studies. I love books and I'm always on the path to find more to consume. Let me ready my already lengthy list.
WARWar Shockwave GIFGiphy
"All Quiet on the Western Front. Everyone should have to reckon with the reality of what war actually means."
"Night, by Elie Wiezel. It is absolutely heartwrecking , and I hated every moment of reading it, which is exactly the effect it is supposed to have."
"Came here looking for this one. I had to read it back in high school and it blew me away how moved I was by it. Stories like his need to be remembered for all time, no matter how hard it is to get through (emotionally-speaking; it's actually quite an easy and short read). I'm so grateful that my English teacher assigned it."
"The Westing Game."
"A Librarian here, such a terrific book. I have gotten so many kids to read it by hooking them with the fact that the reader can play the game and has all of the clues. And good luck as it is fiendishly clever."
All the Good Crazy
"The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. Such a great book."
"Oh my god yes. I love this book for being the sex, drugs and rock and roll of the classics world. It is lengthy but has revenge, treasure, plots and schemes and drugs. There is nothing stuffy about this classic."
"The Giver- that book made my 9-10 year old mind really think about what was important in society. It was the first time the idea of "good" things having a negative consequence was presented to me. I think what makes it work is that we are learning how this whole society really works along side a character who has lived in it his whole life."
"As the facade of the utopian society begins to fall away to show devastating consequences of the "perfect life and society" the reader not only feels their shock but the main character's shock. This was a book I read in school 4 times- once in 5th grade and once in 10th for English and then in both high school and college sociology classes. This book written for 9-13 year olds made for great discussions."
Good and Bad of Liferead ford GIFGiphy
"The Grapes of Wrath and/or Of Mice and Men. Both are heartbreaking, but not for the sake of being heartbreaking - instead they provide a glimpse of how freaking hard life can be, but also how beautiful it can be."
That is a lot of good advice. And a lot of great storytelling and advice giving. Did anyone miss anything that should be there? And make sure you read anything by Harlan Coben, he's a fav.
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It's always our high school dreams, as shown by every high school teen movie ever, to marry the popular girl or the jock. But high school is high school for a reason; life does not really last outside of the walls of high school in the way it did within.
Jocks tend to fall off their athletic bandwagons. The popular girls have a hell of a time making their way in the working world when their popularity means nothing. People's lives sometimes completely freeze in place.
Or sometimes those people really do completely change, and live their lives for the better.
Here were some of those answers.
"My mom was the elite Atlanta debutante and lived a very cushy life at a budding Miami country club. Beautiful and very popular at the private school. My dad grew up on a farm in Virginia. They weren't poor but they were definitely not refined."
"Eventually my father's family made it down to Miami after selling the farm. He became the lifeguard at the country club pool where my mom spent days lounging about."
"My parents say they saw each other and that was it. The scandal was great - the debutante and the lowly lifeguard...."
"They just celebrated 54 years of marriage. My 'lowly' lifeguard father made quite the life for my mom regardless of what all those elite twats said was going to happen."
"She gladly left the country club life for him and they are still so utterly in love it's crazy. He carries a photo of her at the pool where they met. The only references she makes to being 'that girl' are that they proved everyone wrong."
"They are beautiful and I love their story."-wadinglimpkin
Just Because He's Hot Don't Mean He Can't Be Smart Too
"Not me but my mom married my dad who who was hot sh*t. They met in college when he was an absolute hellion."
"But since then he became a doctor, still a really fun dude. He's also a licensed contractor so when he was bored he built a 6000 square foot barn in our backyard over 10 years completely on his own."
"Absolutely stand up dude."-GravityMyGuy
"I married the cool girl. Super athletic, everyone was her friend. We started dating in high school."
"She's kept up everything people loved about her. Nowadays she isn't as interested in other people, and focuses on herself, her career, us and our future."
"We're planning to buy a house and have kids soon. I'm the breadwinner today but I'm not so sure if that'll be true in a few years lol"-WakeAndVape
See, not all the cool kids go on to have horrible, boring lives after. Sometimes the cool kids were cool because they deserved it.
"As it turned out, I married one of the mean girls, didn't go to her school, didn't find out she was considered that until after the divorce. That's how it turned out."
"Then I dated one of the cool chicks. Did go to her school, did know she was considered that. And she was the most amazing human being I've ever known. That one didn't work out either."
"Now I'm just retired from relationships for a bit, strike 3 would kill me right now."
"This was very therapeutic. I have friends and family that are awesome. Hopefully, I'll have more Someday. For now it's me and my kids I'm focusing on."-read110
A Tale Of Strength (On The Outside)
"My mom was the cool girl all through high school, undergrad, grad school. But life didn't go that well. For most of her life, she had to be caring for someone in the family who was ill, and that took a huge toll on her."
"First it was her dad, then it was me (I had childhood illnesses), then her in-laws in quick succession, then her dad again, and finally she had to nurse my dad until he passed away from a terminal illness."
"She was meant to be social and have fun, and instead she was forced to be around sickness and sadness for her best years."
"But she is a very happy and mentally strong person in general who made the best of things. She hosted a lot of people and events."
"My house growing up was full of people visiting and having fun. She's very charming and easy to talk to, and has a lot of fans all the time."
"Though, my siblings and I find her social side rather annoying. She isn't like that with us, and she tells us her charming side is just an act, and the real her is the lady who is constantly critical of us 'for our own good.'"
"She likes having groupies hanging around, people who are happy to take her help and be grateful to her. She has very few friends who could be considered her equals."
"She also expects a lot from other people and is constantly disappointed. She wants to be the center of everything. She doesn't know to be a guest at anything, she somehow ends up running every event she's invited to."
"She sincerely believes she's helping, but it's just disrespectful sometimes and when we tell her that, she doesn't get it."
"She likes to dominate everything and make decisions for everyone. We joke that if the prime minister was her friend, she'd somehow end up running the country for him."-sensitiveinfomax
Sometimes, Chase The Waterfalls
"My mum was the nerdy girl who got all the As and had zero social skills, and somehow managed to start dating my dad who was the popular, good-looking guy who everyone thought would peak in high school."
"She was actually advised by her family and friends that he wouldn't give her the future she was hoping for. They got married at 19, had me when they were 20, and while they were pretty broke the first few years of my life, he paid for my mum to attend law school, started his own business and 25 years later with 3 kids, they're still so in love and have a pretty cushy life."
"My dad actually met one of the loud voices who told my mum she was making a big mistake marrying him, and she had said how she always knew he would turn out well, which he found hilarious."-samknowsbest8
"Found out recently (30 M) that my dad was extremely popular in highschool from my aunt. I had no idea he was an all-star football player with lots of college offers and was prom and homecoming king."
"Never talks about it, but he's doing well. 2 kids, a dog, and a loving wife, imo he's still winning."-ZoatDGoat
And what counts as successful in high school doesn't necessarily count toward success in later life.
What Kind Of Woman?
"My brother was one of the hottest guys in high school and went on to be a model. He's still cool and hot to many but now he's a bit fat."
"He's my brother so ewww on the hot part in my opinion. But women still swoon and he's so obnoxious. Think Matt Dillon, etc…. Era."
"He got dumped by his model 17 years younger wife for a 26 year old. He has impossible standards and it's making him miserable. He's into these flashy shallow women. Overall he's doing really well and his business is thriving."-RunRevolutionary9019
Always Take The Risk
"I sat next to the popular guy every day pretty much for five years and I was so afraid of speaking to him. I'd watched him and his friends picking each other up and shoving the chosen one into lockers, or chasing each other round into a pile on and throwing their shoes at each other. Typical school sh*t."
"They were rowdy and loud and intimidating, but he was the quiet yet seriously funny one and I crushed on him HARD for years. He remembers me as the little blonde girl who didn't speak to anyone (because I was so anxious all the time)."
"He also protected his sister from some a**holes every break time and she'd come to find him for safety from bullies."
"Should have spoken to him sooner when school finished, because we have the same music taste and we get on well enough now at 26 that we have a 6 month old daughter together, my daughter from a previous relationship and we just got engaged last weekend. I adore him, he's handsome, charming and funny and I would do anything for this man as he would for me."-hospital-flowers
High School Never Ends
"I married the Student Council President/ Prom King. He jokes that he peaked in high school. Graduated 20 years ago. He dropped out of three colleges and hasn't found a career path he is passionate about."
"He hates his job, but he's actually really good at it. He's kind of trapped in it because it would be incredibly difficult for him to find a new job without a degree."
"He's a good husband. He's an amazing father. He struggles with anxiety and some depression. A lot of self-doubt. He's incredibly social and the pandemic hit hard."
"He's put on weight and hates his body. He admits that he worries about what other people think of him and wants people to like him."
"He's introspective and wants to be a better person, but anxiety gets in the way sometimes. He married a theater nerd lol, but we didn't meet until college. I felt a little intimidated by his popular past, but he's very down-to-earth."-madestories
We really want our lives to fit neatly into these stereotypes, but at the end of the day, we are all just people repeating a cycle of wanting more for ourselves over and over again. We can't shove that into a stereotype.
Even the student council president, the prom king, the homecoming queen, and the jocks can't run away and hide in a single identity forever. Life makes you into a more rounded person whether you want to be one or not.
Movies' strong focus on creating drama through conflict inevitably has lead to countless on screen deaths.
Some of those movie deaths occur to minor characters we don't care much about (enter Wilhelm Scream). Nonetheless, they can still pack a punch if the manner of the death was gruesome or sad enough.
On the other side of the coin, a death doesn't have to be spectacular to create drama if it happens to a character we've grown to love throughout the film.
And sometimes, a beloved character faces a gruesome end. That's the double whammy.
Redditor Boston_Strong_CQB241 asked:
"Out of all the deaths you seen in movies, which one really stands out to you as the worst?"
Many Redditors recalled the deaths that drew their intensity from the connection they'd felt with the character who did the dying.
And, yes, sometimes the manner of death only heaped on the drama.
"The soldier in Saving Private Ryan that had the knife slowly plunged into his chest after a hand to hand fight and he was begging the other soldier to stop. Intense."
That Etched Wooden Beam
"The old man (Brooks) who hangs himself from The Shawshank Redemption."
" 'Get busy living or get busy dyin.' "
A Very Different Boxing Film
"Hilary Swank in Million Dollar Baby. Almost becoming World Champion, then paralyzed, her family only caring about the money she won from boxing, then having her limbs chopped off because of bed sores that got infected."
"All this just to be put down as a act of kindness like the story she foretold of her dog she grew up with. I will never watch that movie again."
Stoic Until She Wasn't
"Vesper Lynd drowning in 'Casino Royale.' That moment when she goes serene and calm, to a panicky and frenzied last gasp for air.... that really bothered me."
Others were spooked by the pure violence of some onscreen deaths. They could barely watch the gruesome moments when they erupted.
But now they can't forget them.
Slam, Slam, Slam
"That f**king wine bottle scene in Pan's Labyrinth. The casual brutality is so horribly realistic." -- Darth_Mufasa
"My jaw dropped the first time I saw it and it still haunts me. In fact, that movie gave me nightmares for two weeks" -- TheSilverCrystal
"The curb stomp." -- AUTheatreNerd
"American History X. The curb stomp. It haunts me." -- DigitFisher
"Ryan Reynolds getting his insides eaten out by an Alien in the horror movie Life. It still traumatized me."
And some people recalled the deaths they witnessed as children movie-watchers. All grown up now, they still can't unsee those old images.
"That shoe from Who Framed Roger Rabbit, it was so happy and friendly and then it gets slowly dipped to death. The smoke and its cries of pain are burned into my mind 25+ years later."
"Artax in the swamp of sorrows. Made me cry so much as kid, Atreyo was so hopeless." -- kirby60
"Don't you dare do this to me right now" -- OmgOgan
Multiple Movies' Worth of Sadness
"Stoick from How to Train Your Dragon 2, I still cry every time I even think about it, and the flashbacks in the third movie just break me, great trilogy. Full of emotion and great everything, best Dreamworks movies, in my opinion"
The worst part is that this is only a small handful of the tragic movie moments that are out there. And we have so many unknown future deaths we'll see too.
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It might feel like a challenge to come back at someone who has just insulted you, but it's easier than you think.
What's the most memorable comeback you've heard in your life?
No one knows you like your family, hence why they're usually the one who know the best way to eviscerate you using only their words. Anyone with an older brother and/or sister knows what's going on with these comebacks.
She Can Stay
"My son and his newlywed wife were poor college students living out of state. When I went to visit them I took them to the grocery store and let them fill up a couple of grocery carts that I paid for. As we were leaving the store I said, "Now, when your kids are poor married college students trying to get by, don't forget this". My new daughter-in-law piped up and said, "Oh we won't forget. We're going to tell them to go get grandpa!" Haa haaa haaa...I love that gal."
Got That Sacred "Dad Laugh"
"I don't care if it's self-congratulatory, I'm proud of this one:
"Having dinner with my dad and older sister. I got straight As in school or something, and she's doing the older sibling thing."
"Sister: You may have gotten the book smarts in this family, but *I* got the street smarts."
"Me: The corner doesn't count."
"Dad: *chokes whiles laughing*"
Oh, Good Lord...
"My uncle to my husband. "When are you guys having a kid?"
"My husband. "Please don't ask me about my sex life with your niece"
Like, in public. Where people are. Other people. People you don't know, who might just be going about their day-to-day business, and they just so happen to hear someone being roasted alive?
What's Keeping You Alive, Grandpa?
"Was standing behind these two older adults and this teen girl at the gas station last year. She was on her phone and the guy snapped at her for "not knowing how to live without technology" and without looking up she went "don't you have a pacemaker?".
When The Store Hates You...
"Someone yelled out in a Walmart , "I'm not ashamed of who I am".
"Another voice echoed back, "that's your parents job"
You Would Really Walk Up To Someone You Don't Know And Say This?
"Young pregnant co-worker had a stranger stare disapproving at her in a restaurant, then walk up and say "pregnancy isn't very becoming on you." She replied, "well, being a nosey rude bi*ch isn't becoming on you, but here we are."
And then there's these clapbacks. Unplanned, zero preparation, and with little prior knowledge, there needs to be a call placed to some local medical center with how much damage was done with these comebacks.
If You Pantsed It, Fix It
"My friend got pantsed, underwear and all at a party. Instead of pulling his underwear and pants up, immediately, he just kept going about his business, while hanging dong. Those of us that knew him already thought it was hilarious. The people at the party that didn't know him, looked really uncomfortable due to this dude having his pants and underwear around his ankles, with his wiener hanging freely. Our friend/the host said "dude, why don't you pull your pants up?" Pantsed guy said "I didn't pull them down." Then took his turn in beer pong. The host then found the guy that did pull them down and made him pull our friend's pants back up."
Definitely Seems Like You Got Tricked Here
"When I was working as a bartender one Halloween, I came dressed as an old Western style bartender (complete with mustache and accent). We had the evening split up into a little costume party for kids and families in the earlier hours, and then an adults only costume piss up later on."
"One of the regulars laughed at my costume and said I looked stupid, so I told him"
"You should probably come back after the kids have gone because you've come dressed as a c-nt".
"He didn't talk to me for weeks after that. It was blissful."
That's A Mom Burn! Those Don't Heal!
"I asked my mum out of curiosity what she would do if she found a used condom in my brother's room."
"Her response: "I would remind him that you can't get HIV from your own hand"
"For context, I live in South Africa where HIV is very common"
If you have some ice nearby it might be a good idea to go and grab some.
These burns spread.
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