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People Break Down The Strangest Thing They 'Have A Guy' For

People Break Down The Strangest Thing They 'Have A Guy' For
Sharon McCutcheon/Unsplash

People, and the jobs they do, are a constant parade of wonderful weirdness if you're paying attention. People 'have a guy' for all kinds of stuff because of it!

You think of their job as perfectly normal - until you mention that you 'have a guy' who sells a whole lechon out of his car for holiday pig roasts and people look at you like you've lost it.

Turns out, buckling a pig carcass into your passenger's seat for three king's day dinner at Abuelita's house is a decidedly Miami thing.

Reddit user Roentgenographer asked:

"Reddit, what is the strangest thing you 'have a guy' for?"

... and yeah... the Christmas Corpse in Your Car guy has some stiff competition.

Heh. Stiff. Get it? Cause corpse?

I'm not sorry.

Mike, The Homeless Homie

Police Fuck You GIF by Noise Nest NetworkGiphy

"When I was a waiter in downtown Phoenix twenty years ago I had a street person on retainer."

"Parking was difficult for lunch shift, our restaurant couldn't/wouldn't validate employees parking, so we had to use the meters on the street. Since the meters had a two hour limit, you needed to park close enough to be able to run down and feed them in the middle of the lunch rush."

"Spaces were very limited."

"One day, soon after starting, I passed the same 'bum' for the third night in a row panhandling. He wasn't at all vocal, just tried doing funny dances and making people smile, then he'd tell you to have a nice night."

"Never outright asked for anything and was never rude or aggressive. I gave him a couple bucks a few nights in a row, and started to notice him during the day too once we became familiar."

"The first time I saw him after pulling in for a lunch shift I gave him a handful of change from my coin cup in the console and told him if he fed my meter with it all day I'd throw him some cash again after my shift. Found out then that his name was Mike."

"Two hours later it's noon thirty and the crew is dashing down to feed their meters, or asking whomever is going down to do it for them. I gave someone a couple of quarters and asked them to check on mine while they were at it, just in case."

"They were back in five minutes reporting that my car was good, the hostess' car was good, and two other servers bookending my car were good, all of us until after 2pm."

" 'Some homeless guy is feeding all the meters on this side of the block.' "

"The next day, as I was making my way around the gauntlet of one way roads surrounding the building housing my restaurant I saw Mike. He was standing in a parking space right by the bottom of the escalator leading to my work and as soon as he saw my car, he pulled his pants leg up and did a little chorus line dance move to get my attention."

"He'd been standing there 'holding' the spot for me for the past fifteen minutes."

"Thus it began. Mike held a parking spot for me nearly every morning for the next two years. He fed my meter and the meter of any other staff I asked him to."

"I started keeping car cleaning stuff in my car, windex, armor all, and would give him towels from the restaurant to detail it up once a week."

"He knew what bar I hung out at and where I sat. He'd track me down when meters were about to expire or he needed a buck."

"Everybody at the restaurant and the bar across the street started calling him my 'bum.' He was my friend, though."

"His name was Mike. He just didn't live anywhere because life is more complicated for some people. Mike and I stayed friends for years after I stopped working downtown."

"I wouldn't say we kept in touch (he didn't have a cell phone or any way to contact him) but I would still frequent my favorite bar occasionally and run into him on the corner and we'd catch up. Then one day he just wasn't there anymore."

"I asked around but pretty quickly found out I knew more about him than anyone else in the world, it seemed."

"Mike was homeless because he had been a career criminal in his youth. He went to prison a couple times in the eighties for kiting checks at a felony level (an old scam you can't really get away with anymore)."

"He was probably twenty to thirty years older than me at the time and had lived on the streets since the mid- nineties. He had no family, couldn't get hired anywhere with his record, and - to be honest - didn't much care for the idea of having a job and a home."

"Some people simply won't be domesticated. Mike was that way."

"But yeah, I had a guy once, a true downtown concierge."

- Stoopidmonkey73


salma hayek dancing GIFGiphy

"I have a salsa lady. The food, not the dance."

"She's been winning awards for it since before I was born. Fantastic flavor, balanced without too much acid or salt."

"Best salsa I've ever had, and I'm painfully picky about food."

"People have tried to get her to expand, but she sells out locally and doesn't see the need to ship. She just isn't interested in expanding."

"She's good just being the local salsa lady."

- MildlyAnnoyedMother

Someone Get Us This Guy's Number

happy sloth GIFGiphy

"I have a sloth guy."

"He runs a USDA-certified wild animal rescue and has has his sloth for close to 20 years. He takes extraordinary care of all of his animals."

"Three separate family events over the last 15 years? I've called my guy and he's brought a sloth to the party."

"The sloth is not a performing animal- no one gets to approach, handle, or pet it. He simply brings it for a short period of time so that people can see it, and he discusses its life, behavior, and care."

"He does phenomenal work to protect and preserve wildlife- many of his animals came to him after being purchased by people who wanted an 'exotic' pet they quickly realized they could not care for."

"But yeah, I have a sloth guy - which is SO cool."

- Seeking_Starlight

"The Good Stuff"

Season 9 Joey GIF by FriendsGiphy

"I've got a pineapple guy. You don't get good pineapples in the store, you gotta know a guy."

"He gets me the good stuff: a variety called the Sugarloaf Pineapple, White Pineapple, Kona Sugarloaf, Kona White, honey cream, etc.."

"It's a pineapple that is sweeter and, crucially, has significantly lower acidity, so it doesn't hurt your mouth or tongue if you eat too much of it."

"I don't know how my guy gets his pineapple, I don't ask and he doesn't tell. That's the whole point of having a guy. I give him money and he gives me the pineapple, no questions asked."

"It's good to have a pineapple guy."

"And yes I mean actual pineapples, not weed. Now that weed is legal does anyone even need a weed guy anymore?"

- 52ndstreet

Disposing Of Mattresses

Mattress Everybodylovesraymond GIF by TV LandGiphy

"I have a mattress gal."

"She runs a high end mattress shop and is supposed to 'dispose' of any returned mattresses."

"I take care of disposal by showing up at the customers place to pick it up, then bringing the disposal mattresses around to any friends or family in need of a mattress upgrade."

"I got a sweet $4000 king bed for free (aside from hauling it) because it was a return."

- LiterallyADiva

A Fat Guy

Bill Nye Scientist GIF by NETFLIXGiphy

"I have a fat guy. If I need to get fat I call up the fat guy and I get some, he does breast reductions, tummy tucks and such."

"Fat has lots of stem cells. I used to have a brain guy."

"I do medical research."

- Chris4evar

"I was the tissue guy for a while!"

"We had a list of 'wants' from different labs on campus. Anytime we did a necropsy on a lab animal, after the lab had collected the tissues they needed for their research, I would go in and grab tissue for other labs."

"I had one lab that was doing tissue scaffolding that needed 1 inch by 1 inch squares of proximal gracilis, another lab needed whole eyeballs, one wanted intact bladders."

"It sounds gruesome that my job was to cut apart bodies for their pieces, but nothing went to waste from a necropsy and labs that just needed control tissue or a source of healthy tissue didn't need to euthanize a whole animal just for a bladder."

- daabilge

Old Varieties

mr t conan obrien GIF by Team CocoGiphy

"I have a guy who deals in old apple varieties. Want a special tree? He's got it."

"Cousinot, not a problem, Filippa's apple, yes, Northern Spy, of course. We are planting a rather big orchard and I love listening to him extolling the virtues of historic apple varieties."

"The old varieties are healthier. They contain more polyphenols which are apparently the reason why these apples are particularly good for people with food allergies."

"They are often better adapted to soil and weather in our region. And they are beautiful. And the taste is amazing."

"Some taste of almond paste, and honey, others have a more lemony taste. It's like sampling wine."

"He's currently trying to get us a young pear tree from a variety that has only four known living exemplars left in our region. I'm absurdly proud to be the receiver of such a rarity. He just called and I'm excited."

"It's good to have an apple guy."

- Tuedal

The Metal Genitals Guy

terminator 2 GIFGiphy

"I got a guy who will mold your genitals and cast it in the metal of your choosing."

"That's his specialty. He does other stuff like jewelry and general handicrafts. but he's happy to be known as the metal genital guy."

"He primarily works with vaginas. He's done some penises, but mostly just friends or local porn stars. If he's to be believed, he's molded around a thousand vaginas."

"It's probably in the hundreds, realistically, but that's still a LOT of metal genitals."

"Dude's a character."

- GrumpySarlacc


Food Kiss GIF by AsIf.tvGiphy

"I worked in restaurants for years."

"I learned that Hispanic communities really do have a 'guy' for everything, at least where I live - there's a car repair 'guy' they all go to, a tax 'guy,' etc."

"Well, my buddy Felipe introduced me to the Tamale Guy, and I go see him almost weekly ever since I was introduced. You just drop by his house, and go in the kitchen door in the back and he's in there, like six days a week."

"F*cking rad."

- nono_baddog

The Sabbat Guy

helping schitts creek GIF by CBCGiphy

"I'm very old. By reddit standards I should be dead."

"When I was a kid I was "sabbat goy" for the elderly Jewish couple next door. They were very orthodox and there were a bunch of things they wouldn't do on Sabbbat, like turn a light off or re-light the furnace."

"They weren't allowed to 'work' so I stepped in to help with that stuff."

"It was O.K. for me to do it for them, as long as it was voluntary and not a paid arrangement, because I'm not Jewish. They gave us produce from their kitchen garden, but that was not "payment."

"He had the tattoo. Maybe she did too, but she always wore long sleeves."

"I was glad to help them."

- BobT21

Do you have a 'guy' for something interesting? Is there a local tradition that people in your area have a 'guy' for that would seem strange somewhere else?

Spill your stories, folks.

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These Rude Jerks Got Humbled BIG Time
Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash

Although most people agree that “the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”, that is not what happens in these Redditor’s astonishing tales of vengeance. From suplexes on the school bus to a brilliant Nutella sandwich subterfuge and more, you’ll be cheering for the little guy and perhaps getting some ideas for your next nasty encounter.

1. Picked The Right One

My friend and I were biking and I decided that I had to go to the bathroom. I left my bike outside of McDonald’s and told my friend to wait for me. For some reason, he decided to go in and get a McChicken while I was in the bathroom, which meant our two bikes were left unlocked for a few minutes in a shady neighborhood.

As I came out of the bathroom, I just so happened to see a guy taking my bike. I started sprinting after him but he was going too fast. I asked a middle-aged lady in a car if she could help. I was desperate as it was a brand-new bike! She instantly did a screeching 180-degree turn in the parking lot and started chasing him…

I couldn’t believe it when she screamed: “GET OFF THE BIKE YA LITTLE CROOK!! I’M CALLING THE MOTHER TRUCKING BOYS IN BLUE YOU SON OF A—”! This guy was determined, though, he just kept pedaling as fast as he could. The lady swerved onto the grass and went around behind a school. I was exhausted from running to catch up with her.

As I came around the corner, I saw her grinning and holding my bike as the guy ran off across the field. I was speechless. All I could think to do was hug her. She handed me my bike and said, “I told him I was going to call the authorities, but I didn’t”. As she got into her car, she shouted to the kid who was still running, “PULL UP YOUR PANTS YOU HOOLIGAN!”


2. Plot Twist

In my high school algebra class, my teacher started yelling at a shy kid because he didn’t understand how to factor binomials. The kid started to tear up, but the teacher didn’t stop until he was all-out bawling. It was so bad that some other kids jumped in and told her to stop. She silenced them by threatening to call their parents.

Finally, I stood up and said, “Stop, lady”. She threatened to call my mom and I said, “OK, fine”. Then I walked over to the school phone, dialed my mom’s cell number, and put the phone on speaker. The teacher didn’t want to back down, so she played along, told my mom everything, and then ended the conversation by telling my mother she should ground me for a very long time.

After hearing the teacher’s long story, my mom—in her thick Asian accent—said, “Please say to my son I am so proud of him”. Mom Win.


3. A Very Happy Birthday

yellow school bus on roadPhoto by Maximilian Simson on Unsplash

It was my 15th birthday and I was heading home on the school bus. First off, everyone hates riding the bus because you can be stuck on there with a jerk, plus there’s the utter embarrassment of just sitting on one. Anyway, this guy who was tall and about 110 kg (250 lb) made a habit of tormenting anyone that he could on the bus.

Unfortunately, I was always one of his victims. So on this specific day, he kept calling me names and smacking me on the back of the head over and over and over. I lost it, it was my birthday after all. I spun around, screamed at him to shut up, and punched him right in the face. He screamed and grabbed his face.

Blood was spewing out all over his hands, his shirt, and the floor. He started crying and screaming that I broke his nose.

The bus driver slammed on the brakes and flipped out. He said he was taking us all back to school and we would be going straight to the principal’s office. The principal met with him first and then with me.

I got into the principal’s office and explained what happened. When I was finished, I nervously said, “How much trouble am I in”? The principal looked at me for a beat and said, “None. It’s about time someone put that kid in his place”. Needless to say, I left his office with a smile. That was 100% the best birthday gift ever.


4. A Night To Remember

I got out of a club in a downtown area and needed a ride. I had no cash and I didn’t have a cell phone at the time. It wasn’t an area of town where one should go looking for anything at 3:00 am. Fortunately, there was a phone booth about half a block away. As I approached it, I realized it was being used by a very hot, scantily clad blonde.

I slowed my pace and hoped she would wrap it up before I got there. Her back was to me, so I kept my distance, not wanting to frighten her. I stood there for about a minute before I got an uneasy feeling in the back of my neck. This phone booth happened to be on a corner surrounded on three sides by planters with tall bushes coming out of them.

I took a quick look around and out of the corner of my eye, I saw a guy standing, slightly crouched, behind one of the planters, staring at the girl. Her back was to the guy as well and I could tell he hadn’t seen me yet. I realized pretty quickly by the look of him what he had in mind for her once she got off the phone.

I circled to the other side of the phone booth, which was about three meters (10 feet) from her, and leaned up against the opposite planter, making sure that both the shady guy and the girl could see me. When he noticed me, his eyes locked with mine. We stood there, staring each other down for almost five minutes.

The girl, who was oblivious to him and ignoring me, gabbed on the phone for another five minutes. During the second five minutes, the guy bobbed his head to the side in a get-outta-here gesture a few times and the girl started to glare at me like I was creeping her out. I’m pretty sure she was starting to wonder what my problem was.

I was scared out of my mind. I was worried that the guy had a blade or something worse. Suddenly, he came out from behind the planter and circled me and the girl—and by this time he was starting to look like he was about to cut my throat. He walked the full 180 degrees around the corner, all while staying on the sidewalk, and then disappeared past the intersection.

My heart finally started to beat normally again. I heard the girl hang up the phone. She then turned to me with an indignant look on her face. “What’s your problem”? I shrugged and told her I needed the phone, to which she replied, “Pfft, whatever freak”! As if right on cue, a cab pulled up and she got in. As she pulled away, I couldn’t stop laughing.


5. Showdown At The Service Station

When I got out of my car at the gas station, I heard some woman screaming and sobbing. I looked over and saw a man reaching into the window of a pickup truck attempting to either hit or grab her. Suddenly, another man at a different pump asked the violent guy what was going on. “Mind your own business”! the guy yelled back at him.

Looking around, I saw a third guy approaching the truck. I walked over and said, “Hey buddy, knock it off or you’re in trouble”. Silence. Now, I’m not an imposing guy, by any means, but the violent guy looked around and realized that there was now a posse circling him. The woman continued to cry and one of the guys went to the truck to check on her.

Another guy pointed at the abusive dude and gestured to him to back away from the truck. I went inside and told the cashier to call the authorities. When I got back outside, there was a solemn silence. Two guys were holding the jerk against a pump until the authorities showed and an older guy and his wife were talking with the woman, so I just left.

I’m a giant nerd, so this was probably one of the most heroic things I’ve ever done in my life. Sigh.


6. Locker Room Nightmare

shallow focus photo of two man playing taekwondoPhoto by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

I took Judo all through high school and was on the wrestling team for three years—until this incident. I had a lot of issues with many of the people on the wrestling team. There was a significant amount of student-on-student intimidation that went on. The school faculty tried to ignore it, and the wrestling coach encouraged it believing that it made us tougher.

I was 180 cm (5'11") and 78 kg (171 lbs)—big enough that I didn’t have too much trouble, but many of the smaller underclassmen were consistently getting hazed and harassed. One day, I walked into the locker room and found two teammates ganging up on another kid. One held him down and the other had his shorts around his knees and was sticking his junk in the victim’s face.

I don’t know if they were teabagging him, or if something even more serious was going on. Either way, I lost it. I came up behind the guy who was holding the kid down, put my left hand on his shoulder, and nailed him as hard as I could with my right fist as soon as he turned to look at me. The guy with his junk out tripped over his shorts in fear when he saw me hit the first guy.

I grabbed that guy’s face and smashed the back of his head into a locker with all my strength. I then took off before either of them got up. I never went to another wrestling practice after that. I don’t even know if the two guys were seriously injured, or if the kid they were attacking was OK, but my hand hurt for weeks afterward.

Nobody ever approached me about the incident and I didn’t see any of them again for the rest of the school year. My mother is still angry that I quit wrestling in high school but I’m sure she’d understand if I told her why.


7. Kids Say The Darndest Things

I am a special ed teacher for nine students, all of whom have the academic label of “autism”. My students are all in the first and second grades and can participate in the general education setting with minimal support for most of the day. This happened on the second day of school when I was still getting to know everyone.

I witnessed one of my students smelling a mural in the hallway. His sense of smell is one of his preferred ways of learning about new places, people, and activities. Just then, I saw a cluster of eighth graders rounding the corner…

One of the older boys said, “What are you doing, freak”?

I rushed over to “handle it”, but before I could speak up, a soft-spoken little wisp of a first-grade girl, all freckled and missing teeth and small even for her age, interposed herself between my student and the eighth graders. She crossed her arms and lowered her eyebrows menacingly.

In a firm voice that I’m sure everyone along the entire hallway heard, she said, “He is just being himself, OK”?

The older boy looked cowed and actually APOLOGIZED to her and then to the student he made fun of. As he and his group walked away down the hall, his friends teased him for being a jerk, but not once did I have to open my dumb teacher's mouth.


8. Rude For Noods

I was an assistant manager at a dollar store, so it was technically my job to tell off jerks, but I am generally quite shy so I was grateful that I had never really had to confront any customers (before this incident at least). One day an idiot came in who I just could not abide. He started making my sweet little 15-year-old cashier cry.

This cashier in no way deserved the verbal lashing that he was giving her. You see, we had two types of ramen—the bricks and the cups. Bricks were 4/$1 and cups were 2/$1. Captain Literacy grabbed the cups thinking that they were the 4/$1.00 price. He said absolutely nothing to contradict my cashier when she told him the total of his bill.

He paid and left, and then he returned to freak out. Instead of listening to her take the blame, tell him that she was sorry, and offer to get me to fix it, he continued to bust veins in his face screaming at her and calling her a moron. That's when I had enough. I stepped in acting cool and polite, acting as though I was on his side to get the story.

Another customer piped up and said, “The girl did nothing wrong, this guy is an idiot”. I politely and professionally shut them down. The jerk was so happy that he was being vindicated that he was just about to do a little dance right there on the spot. Then I started to repeat the story back to him, you know, just to make sure I have it straight.

All the while, I was walking him slowly toward the noodle shelves—the marked and delineated noodle shelves. The noodles I shelved myself. I turned and looked at him and said, “It looks like the only illiterate moron here is you sir. You will not be getting a refund, you will not be getting an exchange, and you definitely will not be getting an apology”.

But I didn't stop there—I really let him have it: “What you will get is my demand that you never set foot in this store ever again because you sir are a complete and total jerk and unfortunately we don’t let jerks shop here. We only like nice people. The kind that doesn’t make people cry. So get out and stay out”. He attempted to stutter out a rebuttal but the applause from the other customers drowned him out.

Later that week, I got a halfhearted lecture from a grinning district manager for using profanity and yelling in the store. But I also got to be a hero to my cashier who was one of the best employees I ever had. I will always fondly remember my first real shutdown of a really big jerk.


9. Not-So-Sweet Dreams

hallway of buildingPhoto by runnyrem on Unsplash

I was staying in a hotel recently, and at about 10:00 pm I heard a bunch of kids making a ruckus in the hallway. I got up to see what the deal was, and it turned out that four kids and a baby (one of the kids who was maybe six was carrying the baby) were running down the hall wailing. I decided to go to the room that they came out of.

The door was ajar. When I pushed it open I saw a 4-year- old girl with a bloody nose and a very inebriated father rambling unintelligibly. The room was a mess. The mother showed up shortly after I got there. She looked scared and I figured that they had probably been fighting. I forced the boozer to back off (and I’m not a big dude) and took the kids and mom to my room.

I called the authorities and while we waited for them to come, I treated the kids, who seemed pretty unfazed, to some cartoons I had on my laptop. The authorities took the guy to the station, but I’m sure it wasn’t for long. During this whole time, strangely, not a single person on the entire floor came out to see what was going on.


10. Life Of The Party

This happened back in 1997 when I went to the University of California, Santa Barbara. The authorities barged into the house we were partying in to tell us to turn down the music because neighbors had complained. We turned down the music but they started checking bedroom doors. Since we lived in quite a party house, all of the roomies knew to keep their doors locked.

One officer yelled, “WHO LIVES HERE?! SOMEONE NEEDS TO OPEN THESE DOORS”! So, I walked over, drink in hand (I was over 21), and I silenced the room with my next few words: “I’m no lawyer, but we’ve turned down the music and unless you can come up with a search warrant, you’re breaking the law and I will have to ask you to leave”. That same office started to get in my face.

She started threatening to bring me to that station. I told her that I was on private property and obeying all laws and that if someone did not show me a search warrant, I would press charges because they were trespassing. The oldest cop came over and grabbed her by the arm and said firmly but quietly, “We need to go”. I felt like a hero!


11. Faceoff

Growing up, my dad would often give snide little comments and the odd implied physical threat when he wanted to belittle us or put us in our place, which was often in our house. He was a total hockey nut and put all of my brothers and me into hockey as soon as we could fit into skates. He was one of those sports fathers who was a total jerk on the side of the field or rink.

By 17, I’d had enough of sports even though I was good at most of them, so at a family dinner I announced that I was quitting hockey for good because I wanted to become a runner instead. My dad launched into a rant about quitting. He told me how I would be a loser my entire life, how he knew that this was what I was meant to do, and on and on.

After some time, I finally interrupted him and said, “Dad, you’re the deluded one. None of us will be in the NHL and none of us will play professional soccer. None of us will play professional baseball either. The only loser in this room is the one who browbeats his children into trying to fulfill dreams they don’t even want”.

He made a move to come at me, so I pushed the table out to give me some room and told him to come on down because I wasn’t 12 anymore and I was tired of putting up with his garbage. He backed down and took off to his bedroom. A few months later, my younger brother quit hockey, too, and Dad barely yelped. It was awesome.


12. Best Served Cold

person in orange jacket and black pants riding ski blades on snow covered mountain during daytimePhoto by Glade Optics on Unsplash

I have an older sister who is not able-bodied. She and I and some friends were up in Vail, Colorado, because, despite her challenges my sister loves nature and life and tries to immerse herself in all of it. We were walking in the town square area outside of these posh bars and really expensive restaurants when this happened.

A group of young women brushed by us in their Uggs and pearls and Louis Vuitton. I was telling a hilarious yarn to my sister and she was laughing. She has a distinct and contagious laugh and one of the smelly Paris Hilton wannabes started mocking my sister for her friends’ amusement by calling my sister a donkey and a yipping dog.

I looked at my sister and her momentary laughter was gone. She was looking down like she used to do in high school when kids picked on her. Without thinking, and because I was seeing red, I had the most shocking impulse—I grabbed the closest, most frozen, poo-brown snow chunk I could find and whipped it DIRECTLY at the ringleader chick.

The snow blasted her in the back of the head (since they were now walking away from us) and the girl stumbled face-first while grabbing for her friends. They all fell on each other in a spectacular lump. Silence hung in the square for a moment and then a bunch of people burst out laughing and clapping. Seeing my sister’s expression after that made any potential lawsuits worth it.


13. Very Unappetizing

I was eating at a restaurant once with my mom and this redneck guy at another table was talking very loudly about immigration and libtards. There were children nearby and he was beginning to yell and use a lot of profanity. The woman he was with was also talking, but she was very hushed and I couldn’t hear anything she was saying.

I figured it wouldn’t be long before he started talking about Mexicans. Since I’m half Mexican, I told myself that if he did, I was going to speak up. Sure enough, he suddenly got loud and said, “…and DON’T THINK I WON’T TAKE EVERY ONE OF THOSE GAWL-DARN, POOP EATIN’ MESSCANS BACK TO MEXICO MYSELF”! Everyone in the place got quiet.

I shot up and walked over to his table. He was looking at the woman who glanced up at me with an “uh oh” look on her face. I said, “I’m Mexican, you gonna take me to Mexico”? He started to get up from his seat, but when he turned and saw that he was about 45 kg (100 lbs) lighter than me and the top of his head came to my chin he stopped.

The funniest part was when he was starting to get up, he said loudly “MAYBE…” and then when he saw me, he trailed off with a quiet “...I will”. I said, “No, you won’t. There are children here and you need to keep your voice down and your ignorant comments to yourself or I’ll drag YOU to Mexico”! He said something about not meaning me, but I just told him to shut up.

A couple of people clapped and I looked into the kitchen and the Mexicans working back there were all grinning and one of them gave me a thumbs up. He sat there quietly and mumbled a little, then they both got up and left.


14. The New Kid

I transferred to a new school in my freshman year. I was very shy and I just wanted to blend in. I was riding the bus home when these two older boys started picking on a chubby, awkward kid in my grade. They were several rows away from the kid and I was in between. They were throwing things at him and making fun of him because his dad perished the year before.

I was getting more and more angry. So I finally stood up and yelled, “Stop being such jerks! You don’t make fun of someone’s father's passing! What is WRONG with you”? I don’t know if my righteous anger was so intimidating or if they were just surprised to hear the new girl talk, but they just looked at me in stunned silence.

I sat back down in a huff with my face beet red. When I got off the bus, the sort-of-scary-but-probably-just-sick-of-punk-kids bus driver told me that I did a good thing. I still don’t know where that courage came from, but I am proud.


15. Now, That’s Awkward

people at the train looking at their phonesPhoto by Liam Burnett-Blue on Unsplash

A few years back, I was riding a subway train home. I saw this girl sitting there minding her own business, and a group of three slightly older guys sitting a bit farther off. One of the guys started throwing some derogatory comments at her and he was getting louder and more aggressive by the minute. The other passengers on the train are watching the entire scene unfold.

No one was doing anything, either. Finally, the guy who was taunting her snickered and said, “Watch what I’m going to do next”. He then started walking over to the girl. Being physically larger than he was, I intercepted him before he reached the girl and yelled at him to stand down. He walked past me.

He sat down and slid over in an attempt to sit next to her, but I squeezed in between them. For the remainder of the ride, I sat between the girl and the guy, who was now visibly uncomfortable at having been put in his place. Before I got off at my stop, one of the older passengers made eye contact with me and smiled.


16. Mwahahaha

When I was about three, I would play with another kid my age. Unfortunately, all he ever wanted to do was wrestle but every time he would end up hurting me. Finally, after running to my mom crying for like the seventh time, she just said, “Go kick his butt then”. So, the next time we wrestled, I took him down hard and did the leg bendy thing. This time he was the one running to his mom crying.


17. Something Wicked This Way Comes

I went to a very conservative Christian high school—Baptist in case that means anything to anyone. It was so conservative that they refused to acknowledge and observe MLK Jr. Day. While MLK was a Baptist there is more than one flavor. The school I went to was in Northern California and there wasn’t a single black person in the entire congregation.

My school was full of uber-conservative white people who believed in literal Genesis creationism, thought drums and amplified guitars were demonic, thought Christian rock music was as dangerous as secular rock music, and prayed that George W. Bush would win his elections (and thought that their prayers were essential in the eventual outcome).

In my senior year, for two weeks we had our schedules completely rearranged so that we could do a study on a Shakespearean play. Some friend of the school and her husband were “experts”, so our first and second periods (Bible and English, respectively) were bunched into a single period for this in-depth Shakespeare study.

Bible was not taught for two weeks and English became essentially a two-period class. The play we studied was Macbeth. During a history class that took place during these two weeks, my history teacher (who was also my English teacher) was going on about the dangers of rock music. He had some stupid book that outlined the occultic activities of all these famous bands.

As he was ranting, I raised my hand and said, “Mr. Anderson, you’re saying that these bands are a bad influence because of their occultic activity, right”? He agreed. I said, “And you’re saying that listening to these bands opens the doors of your soul to the devil because by accepting this music and allowing it around you, you are inviting demonic influence”? “Yes”, was again his reply.

“So, why,” I asked, “are we enthusiastically canceling Bible class for two weeks to study, voluntarily, a play by Shakespeare whose entire plot is based around witchcraft and the occult? Why are we studying a play that contains carnage and hedonism? What is the difference between Shakespeare and Led Zeppelin exactly”?

As soon as I was done asking this, the look on his face was pure terror. The entire class was silent as he stammered for a response, but he couldn’t even put half a sentence together. The class erupted in laughter. I got pats on the back, handshakes, and “Good job, man” from everyone. I felt like I just slayed a dragon.


18. Hold Your Applause

a train on a bridgePhoto by Norbert Braun on Unsplash

This happened when I was about 21 years old riding the Skytrain back from the city to the burbs. An old lady was sitting alone in a seat by the door and a group of three young and hammered punk teens got on. Almost immediately, one of them made a beeline for the old lady and hovered over her as he leaned against the side of the train with his arm. She was totally frightened.

At the time, I was a long-haired rocker and probably looked as punky as the kids, so when I stood up I’m not sure the other passengers knew which side I was on. I moved in, slipped my body underneath the guy’s arm, and rose to stare him in the face (I was between the old lady and him now). Not a word was spoken. The whole train froze.

The next stop came and no one moved. When I heard the chimes signaling that the doors were about to close, I immediately flung the punk—butt first—through the closing doors and onto the platform just as the train pulled away. His two remaining buddies looked on in shocked silence. Not a word was spoken by anyone on the train until the next stop.

After that, the doors opened and the other two guys beat a hasty retreat. I slowly sauntered off the train to the smiles of all there—especially the old lady. Those smiles were all I needed.


19. Wound Of Honor

I was eating lunch with my friends, the “lame” kids, one time during high school. Our clique sat next to the bros. A mentally challenged kid walked by our two groups and someone from the bro group decided it would be funny to jump on this kid’s back and start riding him like a raging bull.

Some people were laughing but most were in shock.

For some reason, skinny little me decided to throw this massive guy off of the kid. I started yelling at him and telling him that he is a piece of trash. I then proceeded to get beaten up—broken nose and all. Out of nowhere, a group of kids started attacking the bro, which probably saved me. They thanked me for doing the right thing. To this day, my nose is still crooked.


20. Not-So-Smarty Pants

I like to go to one of the campus bars to have a drink while I read, mark students’ work, and so on. Some evenings that bar hosts a trivia contest where teams of people answer questions to win free food and drinks. Fair enough. Last winter I was there marking, and there was a team of middle-aged to elderly men sitting at the next table.

These guys had chosen “The Inklings” as their team name, after the well-known drinking/writing group comprised of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, and others. Judging by their talk, they seemed to be professors in communications, information tech, and that sort of thing. I’m in English and the Inklings are one of my areas of interest.

I was pleased by their name choice, anyway, though unsure why they chose it. As the contest went forward and the empties piled up, one of them started to get aggressive. He was doing a lot of sloppy cursing and loudly accusing other teams of cheating and denouncing any question that he got wrong. It was becoming annoying—and I knew I had to shut him down immediately.

The tipping point came when he started ranting about the endless cheating perpetrated by “those witches over there”—a small group of young female students who weren’t doing anything more egregious than occasionally getting a question right. Finally, I stood up in as ostentatious a way as I could (I managed to make my chair fall over as I was doing it).

I walked two paces over to their table, slammed my hands down on it, looked him right in the eye, and said, “You’re a disgrace to your name. Any one of the Inklings—even Hugo freaking Dyson—would punch you in your mouth for what you’re doing here. Stop it”. He was shocked. The best part was when one of his companions turned to him and muttered, “You know he’s right, Tom”.


21. The Ride Of His Life

black bmw m 3 coupe on gray pavementPhoto by Devon Janse van Rensburg on Unsplash

One afternoon my friends and I were driving on a quiet road in my little Mini Cooper. Suddenly there were a bunch of jerk kids throwing stuff into the road. I swerved to avoid a stone and they started jeering at us and shouting “wankers”. I carried on driving until my friend said, “Let’s go back and scare the poop out of them”.

I slammed on the brakes and put the car in reverse. I was intending to just quickly back up next to them and throw some rubbish from my car at them. Unfortunately, because I suck at driving I reversed too fast, and when I braked again I must have moved the steering wheel involuntarily because I somehow performed an epic and pretty much exact 180-degree spin.

I made the tires screech and everything. The best part was that my move was so (unintentionally) perfectly timed that the car ended up stopping right next to them. They immediately did poop their pants and started to book it out of there—all the while ignorant of the fact that I had no intention of looking so awesome.


22. Fifth Time’s The Charm?

I hit a guy over the head with a half-full tub of butter popcorn while screaming, “YOU FREAKING SUCK”! In my defense, I did it after the FIFTH time he answered his phone during Avatar. Does this count?


23. 10/10 Clapback

I was at a Dollar Tree when this woman was harassing the cashier. The cashier kept telling the customer that she needed a receipt if she wanted a cash refund otherwise the cashier was only able to offer store credit. I mean, this poor cashier was doing everything in her power to remain polite as this woman was swearing at her.

I started to clap. The rude customer turned around and said, “What do you want, idiot”? I told her she was putting on a beautiful performance and that she needed to shut up and stop being so rude to the cashier or get out of the store. She started to say something nasty to me, but I held up my hand and said “Conversation over”.

She was mad. She released an avalanche of swear words at me and proceeded to stomp out. After she left, all of the employees and customers applauded and the cashier thanked me. I told her that no one deserves to be treated like that and then I went next door to the food store and bought cake for all of the cashiers.


24. Simple, Yet Effective

green bottle on white tablePhoto by Joan Tran on Unsplash

In English class last year, a girl spilled her water bottle. The girl next to her started to slow clap and said, “Well done”! I pushed my chair away from the table, stood up, and said, “Don’t clap. Help her”! I walked out to get some paper towels and helped clean up. Sure enough, the mean girl was silent for the next week.


25. A Very Sneaky Sando

One of the special needs kids at our school, Robbie, was very friendly and talkative. The other boys used to make fun of him and would get him to do things to embarrass himself or injure himself (it was nothing too serious, but still). One of their favorite things was to take away his lunch on Fridays. That was the day his mother let him have a Nutella sandwich.

On one particular Friday, I convinced my mom to let me have a Nutella sandwich instead of something healthier. I went to the park at recess, found some dog poop, and loaded it into the sandwich. At lunchtime, I told Robbie to hold my sandwich and sit still as we waited for the guys to come looking for him—and they did, right on schedule.

Matt, who was the second biggest in class and also the meanest, ran by and snatched Robbie’s sandwich, stuffing it in his mouth as he ran. I watched, totally mesmerized. He got about halfway through it before he knew something was very, very wrong. He started sputtering, gagging, and trying to throw up.

During the throwing-up stage, Robbie was laughing and chanting at the top of his lungs, “YOU ATE DOG POOP! YOU ATE DOG POOP! YOU DIRTY POOP EATER”! I didn’t even know that he’d figured it out! Everyone was falling on the floor laughing. Eventually, Matt recovered and immediately went for Robbie, which was something I hadn’t thought about…

Anton, Matt’s sidekick and the biggest guy in class by a wide margin, stepped in and told Matt to back off. To everyone’s shock, Matt quietly backed down and lost a LOT of his cred with the guys. His desperate attempts to get it back made the other guys realize that he was, in fact, not a god, and they started to stand up to him a lot more.


26. Above And Way Beyond The Call

I was working in the tool department at Sears and a guy came in with a defective Walmart-brand wrench wanting us to replace it with a Sears-brand like it was a normal thing to do. He was talking to a cashier who denied his ridiculous request. When he started yelling at her, I decided it was time to step into the situation.

I Googled the name on the wrench and offered to call the company, which, remember had nothing to do with Sears, and he accepted impatiently. I spoke to a representative who offered to overnight a new wrench straight to his door. When he heard this, he flipped out. I guess his gorilla tantrum put me into some mental zone of trying to protect the girl…

I stood there and calmly told him it was the best I could do, and that if he won’t accept the company’s offer, there is nothing else I can do. I completely zoned him out as he went so far as to threaten my life. My replies were just all very calm as I stood between him and the girl who at this point ran away and called a manager.

Anyway, loss prevention showed up and the guy almost started a brawl. He was finally kicked out of the store and banned. For the entire day, everyone was talking about how even though the guy wanted to kill me, I stood up to him as I did. It was pretty cool that they were so amazed and the cashier girl and I were friends until I quit.


27. Boom! Roasted

state of the art building interior with lit Christmas treePhoto by Ron Dauphin on Unsplash

I was at the store with my mom and some kids were running around causing problems. It was Christmas, so my mom said, “You guys better be good or Santa won’t bring you anything”! The kids’ mother stormed over and yelled at my mother that what she did with her kids wasn’t any of our business. My mom coyly replied, “Oh, my mistake! From the way they were acting, I thought they were orphans”.


28. Desperate Times…

I was always big for my age, so when I was in elementary school, my parents told me never to fight and to always just ask a teacher or an adult for help because the larger kid is more likely to get into trouble, even if he was just defending himself. This meant I was usually the target of mean kids, partially due to my size and partially because I didn’t fight back. It made me feel horrible, but I'd eventually have my shining moment.

One day, the teacher told my parents she couldn’t stop the mean kids because nothing happened in front of her. My mom sat me down, sighed, and said, “It’s OK to defend yourself”. The next day, the mean kids came around, not knowing that things had changed. As soon as one threw a punch, I knocked two out, threw a third onto a fence, and sat on the fourth until he cried. I did not get in trouble.


29. Speaking Truth To Power

For a variety of reasons that are irrelevant to this story, I started going to a Catholic high school in the tenth grade, but I am not Catholic. So, one day we were in theology class and the priest/teacher was talking about the evils of gayness and how you shouldn’t allow your son to have their lover in your house because blah, blah, blah.

I raised my hand and asked him why he would encourage the class to treat their potential future children with contempt for any reason whatsoever. So he started asking me a bunch of questions along the lines of, “Oh, so you would want to see them kiss”? I told him that I would want to see my children happy and that following his advice would surely lead them down the opposite path.

I should mention that I didn’t exactly say it respectfully, so he sent me to the principal who then started asking me the EXACT SAME QUESTIONS. I told him I was leaving and he told me that was technically against the law without permission. I told him he should probably call the authorities because he and his administration weren’t going to be able to stop me.

I got home and my dad was outraged that I skipped school at least he was until I told him everything that had happened. He was proud of me. After all, his brother is gay.


30. Stroke Of Genius

woman wearing black shirtPhoto by Jonnelle Yankovich on Unsplash

When I was in high school, I was the biggest person, no joke, at 198 cm (6'6") and 159 kg (350 lbs). My parents have raised me to be an open-minded person, so whenever I would see people pick on a good friend of mine who just so happened to be gay, my go-to response was to make the persecutor as physically uncomfortable as possible.

First I would start lovingly stroking them and do all other sorts of affectionate gestures. Then when they called me derogatory names, I would explain that I was indeed straight, just comfortable enough with myself that I didn’t get freaked out by my campy actions. It didn’t take long to teach these intolerant jerks a lesson.


31. Crotch Fruit Gone Wild

I was in a coffee shop and this woman was letting her five-year-old kid run amok in the store. He was knocking things over, breaking stuff, and annoying people. The last straw was when he kicked the granny in line behind me. The kid’s mom saw it and just grinned, so I realized it was time for me to do something…

“Excuse me, ma’am”, I said loud enough for all to hear. “It’s blatantly obvious that your nanny has the day off, so would you mind if I showed your kid what a firm smack feels like so that you can continue to not act like a parent”? The woman stormed out and the granny gently touched my arm and said, “I thought there was no hope for your generation, but I guess I was wrong”.


32. Cool In The Face Of Danger

I tried to strike up a conversation with some guy in line for drinks at a rough bar in a small Canadian town. But instead of talking back to me like a normal person, he punched me in the face. I was pretty loaded and said (in sincerity, I was pretty surprised and it must have been a bad punch), “Did you just punch me in the face?”

He replied with another lame punch to my face. To which I said, “You did punch me in the face! You suck”! I then turned around, went and got my drink, and had him tossed out. I’d always fantasized about being some kind of surprise brawler in such a situation, but I learned that I’m much less reactive than I could even imagine.


33. Panic On The Dance Floor

a group of people standing around motorcycles under a signPhoto by Alexander Bennington on Unsplash

Recently, some friends and I were in a redneck biker bar in a medium-sized town. The place was full and I was one of two Pakistani/Indian people in the whole place—there were maybe five or six other non-white people floating around if that many. Anyway, I got separated from my group and started looking for them on the dance floor.

Some guy grabbed my shoulder and turned me around. He looked me straight in the eye and said, “Shouldn’t you be driving a cab or something”? I walked up to him, gave him a huge hug, and said, “Oh my god, I can’t believe I found you. Your mother probably never told you, but I’m your father. That’s right. I was screwing your mom for a while”.

I then turned around and walked away. He was too stunned to respond.


34. Heckling The Heckler

This happened when I was a week from graduating from a liberal arts hippie community known as Hampshire College in Western Massachusetts. A graduate from the 1970s came and read his memoir. It was ill-received by the lecture hall of students and the author was even harassed by a student who questioned his scathing portrayal of the college in his day.

This person seriously tried to make the author feel guilty about his personal experience. In her last heckle, she admitted that she hadn’t even read his book, only a portion of a review. The next time she spoke, I interrupted her and said, “You didn’t even read the book”. It was met with glorious applause, and I even got a smile from the guest.


35. You Got Told

My four-year-old stepson and I were on the bus headed to the local pool. There was a loud group of college-aged boys, who were swearing profusely. My stepson, the brave little soul he is, decided to set them straight. “THAT’S A BAD WORD! DON’T SAY THAT OR MOM WILL WASH YOUR MOUTH OUT WITH SOAP”! Needless to say, the group was pretty shocked to be called out by a preschooler.

After that, they kinda looked at me, but I just gave them an eyebrow and tried not to laugh.


36. A Nose For Trouble

man in green polo shirtPhoto by Rajesh Rajput on Unsplash

I was constantly made fun of throughout grade school. I lived in this in a small rural college town, where I was the only Indian kid in the whole middle school. In gym class, there was this idiot farm boy who would always sit behind me and make fun of me during attendance. Normally I would tolerate it, but one day he went too far…

On the day in question, he called me the most offensive name he could—Osama Bin Laden, the man behind 9/11. I snapped. I charged at him and kicked him right in the nose, while he was sitting there. His nose shattered and I was held back before he could even react. I received a day of in-school suspension and he received a whole week, plus he was charged with a hate offense. Needless to say, he never bothered me again.


37. Tough Guy

A friend of mine is a gay man. Once at a gas station in small-town Iowa, an employee called him a derogatory name as he was leaving. My friend stopped, turned around, picked up the guy by the collar, and lisped, “Sometimes we bash back”. He then threw the guy into one of the large candy displays. Everyone, including myself, was in total shock.


38. Worst Excuse Ever

I was on the last week of my month-long Tokyo trip when I happened to be outside Shibuya station, having a smoke on those circular benches they have there. This is one of the best places in the world to people-watch as almost all of Tokyo makes it their meeting spot when going out with friends. Anyway, I was sitting there when I noticed this mid-thirties European guy.

He was playing pickup artist to any girl sitting by herself and getting rejected every time. At first, I could only chuckle to myself at how bad his game was. Suddenly this guy planted himself down next to two middle-school-aged girls who had been sitting beside me on the same circular bench. He started talking them up in a bad combo of English and Japanese.

I noticed that the girls were looking rather uncomfortable but were still attempting to be polite. By this point I was getting disgusted, so I leaned over, gave him a serious stare, and said, “You realize they’re only in middle school right”? I should note that I am Asian-American but he probably thought I was just another Japanese bystander.

I could tell he was pretty taken aback but he muttered defensively, “I just like girls”. I rolled my eyes at his lame excuse and the two girls took this opportunity to escape. I took another drag of my smoke, shook my head, and watched the creep quickly walk away from the area.


39. My, How The Tables Have Turned

two person standing on train windowPhoto by Fredrik Öhlander on Unsplash

One of my friends had to ride in a train compartment for four hours with a mother, her kid, and another woman. The kid was about five and was running around everywhere screaming, jumping on seats, and annoying everyone. At some point, he purposely blew saliva on the woman.

The disgusted woman wiped it off and asked the mother to deal with her kid. The mother said, “You know, I think that the best education is through discovery, that’s why I don’t want to put up barriers for him”. As the train entered the station, my friend stood up, spat on the mother, and said, “You know what? My mother thinks just like you”.


40. Malicious Compliance For Sure

In high school, I used to wear a shirt with George Bush’s face on it and the words “international monster”. One of my teachers was an American (I’m Canadian) AND she was a Republican. Anyway, she told me to take off my shirt, thinking she had the upper hand. But she was in for quite the surprise—I knew she meant that I should put on another shirt, but I just took off my shirt and sat there in the middle of class glaring at her.

The whole class started laughing deliriously. To make a long story short, she had me suspended for that. I decided to write a 12-page letter to the school board threatening to sue every teacher, faculty member, and all of the administration in Quebec for violating my right to free speech. They let me come back to school two days later.


41. Like A Ton Of Bricks

When I was in second grade, one of the girls in my class had a puppy love crush on me. One day during recess, one of the other boys started throwing dirt and pine needles at her. I decided to be the good guy and stand up to him. I told him to pick on someone his size. Corny, I know, but I was a big comic book fan at the time.

The guy picked up a big block of dirt and gave me a menacing look. I thought I would duck just as he threw the dirt and it would fly awesomely right over my head. It turns out the dirt was a brick covered in dirt. The jerk threw the brick and I tried to duck, but the brick hit me right in the face and knocked me back a few feet.

I stood up with blood rushing from my nose as the teacher finally rushed over and took me to the nurse. I still get nosebleeds easily because of that, and I never did get to date that girl. Although this story didn’t have a perfect ending, it helped me realize that even though life can suck for the good guys, someone needs to stand up to jerks.


42. Snappy Comeback

Free Images : person, black and white, woman, singer, artist

I was at a Cher concert with my partner and to the left of us were two other gay guys and to our right there was an older woman who was sitting apart from her friends. She was very nice and was enjoying the concert much more than we were. The two guys to our left kept getting up to get drinks and use the facilities every few minutes, which was pretty annoying.

Finally, one of them noticed that we were getting ticked off, and tried to buddy up to us. “Look at that woman down there”, he said. “I bet that’s not even her real hair”. To which my partner replied instantly, “I wish you wouldn’t talk about my Mom that way”. I’ve never seen so much backpedaling in my life. At least they started going the other way down the row.


43. Now There’s A Happy Ending

I was at a fancy business dinner party where everyone was in suits. One guy there was HUGE—tall and heavy—and completely smashed. He thought it would be a good idea to lift a good-looking woman from behind by wrapping his arms around her chest and swinging her back and forth. As he did this, the look on her face was sheer horror.

I am an average height and weighed about 68 kg (150 lbs) at the time. I walked up to him and said, “If you don’t put her down RIGHT NOW I am gonna kick your butt”. He put her down. I got laid.


44. Big Man Off Campus

I was home from college for the summer and saw two of the biggest idiots from my grade school days as I was walking into Chipotle. They saw me and one decided to call me a nasty name. That's when I had a genius moment of pure impulse. I turned and said in the most sunny tone you could imagine, “Hey guys! How’s college”? They were speechless. I won.


45. What Happens On The Plane To Vegas…

turned-on headrest monitorsPhoto by Ethan Hu on Unsplash

When I was 21, I was on an airplane to Las Vegas. It was one of those old Southwest planes that had some rows of seats that faced backward. I grabbed one of the backward-facing seats. Sitting across from me there was a very attractive 20-ish woman in the window seat and some random 40-year-old guy in the aisle seat.

Now, I’m not averse to talking to people, so when the 40- year-old started chatting with me about whatever, I didn’t mind. Out of nowhere, he nodded toward the young woman and said in that stupid guy way, “Well.. at least you have something pretty to look at during the flight”. She was annoyed. I feigned confusion and said, “Um, yes, your daughter is lovely”.

He was so flummoxed that he didn’t say another word for the rest of the flight.


46. It’s Called Fashion, Sweetie

Once upon a time in high school, the class jerk came up to me and, in front of a group of people, said, “I thought only girls cuffed their jeans”. I quickly answered, “I thought only girls cared about what other people wear”. It was a triumphant moment when everyone laughed at him. Best of all, he never bugged me again.


47. Lost In Translation

When I was 10, I was taking my four-year-old brother to the grocer a block from our house to buy some candy. On the way back from the store, a little kid ran up and took my brother’s candy. My brother was fast enough to hang on to him and get his candy back—almost. Both kids were about the same age and build so their struggle turned into a tug-of-war.

Just then the kid’s mother stepped in and her reaction was totally unexpected—she started YANKING on my brother’s arm. I tried to tell her in broken Korean to let my brother go, but all she saw was that my brother won’t let go of her poor, now screaming son. I’m frantic because I can’t get her to understand that her kid started it all and my brother was only trying to keep his candy.

By now, she was about to yank my brother’s arm right out of the socket. That’s when I karate-chopped the lady. Hard. I hit her forearm with everything I had and it worked! She dropped my brother’s arm and then came for me. I snatched my brother and ran home with the RAGE of the Korean nation behind me. Little did I know, my dad had been looking out of the apartment window because of the commotion.

As I was breathlessly telling my dad what happened, the angry mother came running down the hall, babies in tow. She screamed at my dad and the whole time. My dad was nodding politely, smiling apologetically, and then he dropped the mic: “Get away from my kids. You lay your hands on either one of them again and I’ll call the authorities. Now go on your merry way and I’ll tend to my poor children”.

The Korean lady gave my dad a little bow, shot me and my brother a glare that said, “OH, YOU’RE IN FOR IT NOW”, and walked off, completely placated. Man, I’m glad she didn’t understand English! My dad’s been my hero ever since.


48. Guardian Angels

traffic light in redPhoto by Erwan Hesry on Unsplash

My good friend and I were waiting at a red light and across the intersection, there was a young couple in their 20s. The guy was screaming at the girl so loudly that we could hear it over the traffic, and his posture looked like he was about to hit her. As we passed them, I screamed out the window “Don’t talk to her that way”! That's all I was going to do—but then my friend took it even further.

My friend yelled, “Leave her alone, you piece of trash”! We didn’t plan to yell, it’s just that we both were extremely angry about it. As I continued up the street, he threw his bike and backpack down and started running after us, screaming that he would destroy us and her too. As soon as he started running after us, I dialed the authorities. He was eventually apprehended.


49. A Living Legend

During my junior year of high school, I was riding the bus because I couldn’t afford a car at the time. A pair of annoying sophomore guys were tormenting a freshman girl for being overweight. She just had natural curves and was by no means unattractive. Nevertheless, these two were bashing her for not conforming to a drastically distorted view of beauty.

I was glad to see that the girl, to her credit, was throwing some insults right back at them. Now, I don’t mind watching a good insult fight—that’s how I sharpened my wit back in those days. However, it was when one of the aggressors tried to grab her chest that something inside of me snapped. I jumped into action…

The guys were near the front of the bus, and I was in the second to last seat. I stormed the length of the bus and grabbed the bigger guy by the back of his head. I then slammed him against the window on the opposite side of the bus and stuck my forearm across his neck. He was flailing and trying to get away, but I just unleashed on him…


Now the other guy, suddenly feeling brave, decided to try and lay into me. I’m not a big guy, but they weren’t exactly fully developed either. He definitely messed with the wrong one—the kid punched me in the back of the head and started telling me to leave his friend alone. I promptly wrapped my right arm around the kid’s head, spun around, lifted him WWE-suplex style, and slammed him onto the floor.

I then took the girl’s hand, and led her back to my seat, stepping over the still-facedown brat as I went. She rode with me for the rest of the year and the two little jerks were put in the front seat so the driver could keep an eye on them. I should also mention that after the incident, my words became law on that bus.

Bonus: It’s been about two years since the end of that particular school year, and out of the blue I got an email from the girl, saying how much she appreciated what I did, and how after that happened, she had the biggest crush on me. So now, when I get home from college, I have a girlfriend waiting for me because I did what someone should have done a long time ago.


50. And The Oscar Goes To…

I was waiting for my train to arrive when a girl about my age walked past, followed closely by an older man who was annoying her. She was trying to get rid of him by saying things like, “I’ve asked you to leave me alone” and “Please just go away”. The guy was wobbly and looked a little smashed on something.

I turned to the girl, lit my face up, and exclaimed, “There you are! Hey, who’s this”? I turned to the pest and said, “Do you know my friend”? He looked at me a little apprehensively. At this point, the girl had picked up on what I was trying to do and began to play along. She acted like I was an old friend and we started to “catch up” with each other.

After a few minutes, the pest got the message and left. I smiled at her and asked if she was OK. She replied, “Yes, thanks. My boyfriend will be here in a minute”. At this point, she moved to board the train, which had just pulled up to the platform. I have a girlfriend. I wasn’t hitting on her. She couldn’t have spared my feelings and come up with a less ridiculous lie?


Content Warning: Mental Health, Suicide, Domestic Violence, Child Abuse, True Crime Cases

We've likely all had a really good friend or close family member whom we felt we could share all of our biggest dreams and deepest, darkest secrets with. But truth be told, most of those deep, dark secrets were having a crush on the "bad boy" at school or cheating on a math test in sixth grade.

Some families have genuinely dark and troubling secrets, the stuff from true crime stories and the best psychological thriller fiction, and upon being revealed these secrets, it might become hard to ever look at the family quite the same way again.

Bracing themselves, Redditor EgglessYolk asked:

"What dark family secret were you let in on once you were old enough?"

Not the Best Sledding Day Ever

"My paternal grandmother had an affair with our small town’s mortician in the 1940s. She got pregnant and he performed an illegal abortion. The fetus was buried behind the funeral home he owned where we kids used to sled every winter."

"My dad told me this as I was getting ready to take a ride down the hill on the sled when I was 12."

"Also, my paternal grandfather had multiple illegitimate children around our small town. Turns out one of my best friends was also my half-cousin. My father told me that when I was 17."

"My father was educated, intelligent, honest, and moral, but also Autistic and not always the best with timing. The fact that his parents were so wild was absolutely shocking to me."

- arjacks

Wonderful Bonus Brothers

"I found out when I was in my early 30s that my mom didn't just have four kids, but actually six, though she gave two up for adoption before I was born."

"Also, I was the last baby she had with some rando before she married my stepdad and she had intended to give me up for adoption, as well, but somehow kept me."

"The silver lining? One of the babies she gave up contacted her a few years after I learned about this and now I have an awesome new brother!"

- Pandora1685

A Terrible Family History

"1. My grandfather killed his own son by throwing him on the floor because he was crying (he was just a couple of months old)."

"2. My uncle tried to rob a bank and ran away on foot. He later got married and his wife ended up committing suicide. At the time, the police thought that my uncle killed her since he had a criminal past, but he didn't (he was at work and there were witnesses)."

"3. I have multiple half-siblings (my dad was, and is, unfaithful)."

"4. My grandfather burnt the house down with his wife and children inside with the intention of them dying. My grandmother ran away with her seven or eight children, I don't recall, and she asked a priest that she worked for (she cleaned his house) to give her a space to stay, and he ended up giving her a home that an old lady left for the church (and if I'm not mistaken, she was paying it off little by little)."

"5. My aunt's neighbor (who I went to the beach with when I was little) apparently killed his own wife abroad."

"6. There was a rumor that my uncle's kids weren't his."

- _leticia_

A Tragic Family Tree

"My grandpa (15) kidnapped my grandma (14) from a convent. No one even bothered looking for her thereafter because she was an orphan and didn't even know who her family was. They had 16 children together."

- afa78

An Assisted Ending

"My extremely wealthy uncle was going downhill quickly with Alzheimer’s. Before he was too far gone, he apparently made a deal with my aunt that when things got the the point that they would have to send him to a nursing home, she would kill him instead."

"He wrote all of this in a letter and gave it to the attorney of their estate."

"When the time came, I don’t know why she chose to shoot him in the back of the head instead of something less violent, but she did."

"It was a pretty big trial with a fair bit of news coverage, and it really blew up when the lawyer testified and brought forward the letter. My aunt served like two years, I think, and was released on parole."

- Cannoli_Emma

"That's extremely sad but also really bada** of both of them. I'm sorry for everyone who was involved."

- tsunaminatpot

"It’s kinda insane that this even had to happen. If we lose control of our body, we should be able to say what we want and when."

"She was doing what he asked. I think most would if they could. Sad that she had to go to jail."

"End of life for a lot of people isn’t something they want but they’re forced to do it for the sake of everyone else."

- jazzhandsdancehands

A One Night Stand

"I found out when I was about 32 that apparently in 1973, my dad had a daughter he never knew existed."

"I found out because he texted that to me while I was working, after finding out about it himself about one week earlier. She was in her late 40s by that point, I think."

"What's sort of tragic is all this time we thought I was my dad's only kid, and he always wanted a daughter but never got one due to marriages ending. He would have f**king LOVED this girl. His daughter was the result of a one-night stand with a girl he never talked to again, and according to his daughter, the mother had a mental breakdown not long after giving birth and never really had custody of the daughter anyway."

"Dad never would have had any way to find out, the baby grew up with the mother's parents in another state, and the mother kinda went AWOL."

- ManicDigressive

A Disney Trip to (Not) Remember

"My parents took me to Disneyland for my seventh birthday. I recall landing, going to the park, and having a great first day or two."

"Then my parents had to step out and take a bunch of phone calls. They sounded very stressed. They kept telling me nothing happened and everything was okay."

"Eventually, we flew home, and surprise! We took an extra couple of days to go to a big Waterpark away from home."

"I fondly remembered this birthday and eventually forgot about any of the weirdness."

"Maybe 10 years later, my parents finally told me what happened. My uncle, my dad's brother, tried to kill himself on my seventh birthday. He shot himself in the stomach with a rifle. He was poor, addicted to drugs, no work, etc. He felt depressed my dad had the life he always wanted, so tried to kill himself."

"He ended up living. My parents took me to the Waterpark so that we didn't have to come home to him leaving the hospital. By not telling me, my parents let me keep my birthday as my day, not the day my uncle tried to die. Knowing how a seven-year-old's brain works, I probably would've thought I had something to do with it."

- No-Ice-9612

The Documentary in the Family

"My dad's first cousin is serial killer Kenneth McDuff. We saw the 'America's Most Wanted' episode when it aired and were so surprised to hear about another McDuff, not knowing he was a relative."

- lolabam3

"Google Search Result: 'McDuff was given three death sentences that were reduced to life imprisonment consequently to the 1972 U.S. Supreme Court ruling Furman v. Georgia. He was paroled in 1989 and went on to kill again. He was executed in 1998 and is suspected to have been responsible for many other killings.'"

"Jesus H. Ch**st, they f**king paroled him after he had been given three death sentences commuted to a life sentence?!"

- dcbluestar

The Motherly Figure

"My uncle was actually my cousin."

"He was kidnapped as an infant, and when he was returned a year later, my aunt didn't want him back. My grandparents adopted him so he was legally my uncle."

"My aunt was a real piece of work. To backtrack a moment, this side of my family isn't biological. Technically my dad is my step-dad, but he raised me from toddlerhood and he's my dad, pure and simple. All of his family treated me as one of their own."

"Except my aunt. She would always tell my grandparents that she just couldn't understand how they could love me, because I wasn't 'blood family.'"

"I have no idea why she didn't want her son back. It was a familial kidnapping, a non-custodial father. When my cousin was returned, she ditched him with my grandparents and got back together with her other half."

- EhlersDanlosSucks

23AndMe Discoveries

"I found out I had a sister who had been given up for adoption. The only reason I found out was the person who informed me no longer felt bound to secrecy after my mom died. And the person who told me had 'receipts' solid enough that I have no reason to doubt them."

"It also explains why mom freaked out when I told her I'd done a 23AndMe test."

- zombiemann

"23andMe is how my father discovered he had a bonus cousin. As it turns out, his uncle had a fling before leaving for WWII that resulted in a child he either never told anyone about or didn’t even know himself."

"When my father looked her, the cousin, up she happened to live in the same city. He and my aunts contacted her and all met up for lunch. Turns out the woman had been searching for years to find her father's side of family. As far as I know, they still keep in touch."

- pyroagg

Hidden in Plain Sight

"My grandfather had severely scarred legs from burns he got as a kid. Growing up, we were told that he was in a fire in an apartment building and sustained the burns while escaping. He died when I was seven, and one of my few memories of him is an image of those scarred legs."

"Well, when I was 23, my great aunt (his sister), told me that it wasn't a fire. Their father ran a bath with scalding water and put my grandfather in it as a punishment."

"My great-grandfather was an abusive alcoholic piece of s**t who f**king maimed his son."

- idksomeusername42

An Unhonorable Sword

"My mother grew up in the American South. Her brother died in his early 20's and she always told me it was a freak accident. A bullet came through the window killing him. They lived in a rural area so I never questioned it."

"One year, I inherited an old Korean War officer's sword after my grandpa passed. My mom freaked out and told me that it was too dangerous to keep and that we should sell it or get a safe to lock it up in. I thought it was weird so I asked my dad and he got this sad look on his face."

"Turns out my mom's brother was brutally murdered with a similar sword in the 80s. He had gotten involved with some drug dealers and they thought he had snitched about one of their big deals that got busted. No idea why they decided to use a sword but it was pretty f**ked up to hear about. My mom had to ID the body."

"I found this out when I was 16 but she never directly acknowledged it until years later. My mom said he was just trying to make some extra cash by introducing people who partied to the dealers. I'm about his age now and I can see how he just thought he was making a quick buck. Never thinking something like that would get him killed."

- plurperonipizza

The Miniature Farm

"When I was very young, my family lived in a townhouse, and against all local bylaws, my mother decided to keep a horse in our backyard."

"Not only that, but it was an ex-racehorse that came as a package deal: the goat companion that slept in the closet of my nursery."

"I also later found out she was running a grow-op in the basement."

- SlyGuy011

Inspiring Our Own Inner Glorias

"Y’all’s stories are WILD! Mine is super tame:"

"When I was in my early 20s, I found an old photo of someone in a family album I didn’t recognize."

"When I asked my mom about it, she said, 'Oh, that’s your Aunt Gloria.” Then she lowered her voice (even though we were alone) and added, 'She’s a NUDIST.'"

"Poor Aunt Gloria. She just wants to be a nudey-lady and everyone acts like she’s a leper."

- WithoutDennisNedry

"I aspire to be a Gloria."

- breadanudes

The Redditor who posted this marked it for "Serious Replies Only," and their fellow Redditors did not disappoint.

While some of these might have had a happy ending in a way, like a family expanding with "bonus" siblings and cousins, but some of these, it's hard to imagine moving past the news. It's a delicate reminder of how resilient humans can be.

If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988.

To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at

What happens when a therapist's professional veneer cracks? These Redditors and therapists share their most bizarre, harrowing, and hilarious experiences.

1. Not There When It Counts

I’m a social worker who works with children. We got this underaged girl who was raised by a mother suffering from Munchhausen-by-proxy Syndrome, which essentially means the mother pretends that her child is sick to get attention and the pity of other people. This goes as far as poisoning her own child just to have a reason to seek out doctors and get their attention.

The mother in question was incredibly horrible, even when her daughter got taken away from her. For some reason, officials never took child custody from her, which made it easy for her to influence her daughter’s life from far away. She specifically used it to tell her daughter that she loved her and will always be there for her, but every time she needed to be there, she wasn't. This led to an absolutely heartbreaking moment.

One day, her daughter got pregnant. However, the fetus wasn’t viable, so they had to perform an operation. All the mother needed to do was grant permission by email, but although I called her several times and she assured me she would send it, it just never came. It took three whole, agonizing days for that poor girl to get the procedure she needed, simply because her mother just didn't do anything.

We finally reached out to CPS and got permission through them, but her daughter was deeply harmed by this and just never recovered from it. Seeing her like this was my first "I need a minute" moment.


2. Let It Go

I was in a tiny room with this well-known patient of mine. She was a sweet, sweet woman who all of a sudden stood up, said “Excuse me for a second,” went to the opposite corner of the (again, tiny) room, and threw the biggest, loudest, perfect high-pitch toot I’ve heard in my life. Then she came back to the chair (two steps really) and smiled as if nothing had happened.


3. Home Alone

white and red wooden house miniature on brown tablePhoto by Tierra Mallorca on Unsplash

Working with kids has always affected me the most. I had one kid who was in foster care and had been pushed from house to house. He had apparently had a very rough upbringing before that. He was very quiet and didn't talk much. We always gave every child a box that they could decorate and fill with things they made in sessions. At the end of their sessions, they could then take it home if they wanted to. His response to this shattered my heart.

What did this kid do when I first gave him his box? He started making it into a house. Gave it a door, windows, a roof, etc. and then wrote a message to his mother (who he couldn't see anymore) on the side to say that he loved her. In the sessions, he spent the majority of the time playing with the dollhouse where it always went the same way.

He arranged all the furniture and people perfectly. He was very specific about what went where and what people had which rooms. And then he would destroy it all. Saying that “the new people are coming". I have a lot of stories but remembering his pain and his simple desire for a home always breaks my heart. I hope that he is out there doing OK now.


4. Don’t Carry It All

My client told me his family didn't appreciate his interest in guns, to which he proceeded to tell me he is always carrying. He then places his piece on the table in front of me and asked if it made me nervous. It did, but we focused more on why he wanted to know if I was nervous and brought it back around to his family. From then on, I made sure to always have access to a door and never put the client between the door and myself again—just to be safe.


5. Sharing The Burden

I am an intake coordinator at a community mental health center. One day, I had to meet face-to-face with a woman who was wanting services. She desperately needed them. She was hoarding multiple properties and sleeping in her car at a fast-food restaurant. Her children wanted to help but she couldn't let go of the items. It was difficult to politely ignore the strong odor coming from her, but I did.

She's explaining how her life got this way. It was largely because she had to undergo treatment for cancer 10 years ago. My heart stopped for a moment. See, my mother had passed quite recently and very quickly with the same kind of cancer, after having been cancer-free for five years. I started to tear up. She thought it was so compassionate of me to listen to her story and work on getting her help.

After she left, I couldn't hold it in. I sobbed. The office staff teared up and they told me I was so professional and kind. I got a few hugs and I went to my car to process. But here's the ugly truth: I wasn't so much sad for the lady as I was angry that she survived her cancer and my mother didn't. That she lives her life in squalor while my mom perished just when she reached the happiest, most stable chapter of her life.

My therapist heard all about it. We've worked it out in our department to try to avoid cases that would be triggering if possible. My colleague will take the cancer ones for me.


6. A Bridge Too Far

woman in black crew neck shirtPhoto by OSPAN ALI on Unsplash

I used to work as an outreach clinician for people with serious and persistent diagnoses. A person who was experiencing a lot of paranoia was showing my colleague and me “evidence” that the local hospital had harmed them during a medical admission. They handed my co-worker a freezer bag full of grayish-yellow, oily curls. When they explained what it was, I nearly threw up.

The bag was full of skin they’d peeled from their feet and thighs as evidence of “being exposed to contaminants". I can hang with almost anything but we were NOT open to any more contact with the bag.


7. Not Now, Brain!

When I worked in bereavement, a client of mine used the term “skid-marks” when discussing the accident he and his family had been in. For some reason, there and then, the expression just caught me off guard. I joined the dots, and the corners of my mouth started to rise. In actuality, this may have only lasted a moment, but it felt like minutes. All the while I was drawing blood as I chewed down on the insides of my cheeks.

I felt like the worst human being alive.


8. Happy And Unhealthy

I work at a residential group home. We had a kid who we had admitted about four months prior. In a family session, they mention they had parasites. At this point, I’m like what??? The mom goes, “Oh yeah, our whole family has them. We don’t believe in getting rid of them since they’re part of our biological ecosystem". I’m just dumbstruck from here on out.

We spent three weeks afterward convincing this family it was an infectious disease concern for all of our other residents. Three weeks of education, planning, and worst of all convincing this kid and mother that their IQ wouldn’t drop because they had agreed to irradiate the parasites!


9. You Can Do This

woman in white tank topPhoto by Molnár Bálint on Unsplash

I worked as a therapist at an agency that dealt with substance misuse before going into private practice. One of my biggest “I need a moment” times happened there. I was working with a young individual (and I myself was around their age) who was an addict. They were bright, intelligent, and deeply empathetic to the world but so, so sick. They had to have not just one open-heart surgery due to cardiomyopathy, but two.

This was prior to ever turning 30. They just kept relapsing despite trying so hard. This client never missed treatment. One day, they didn’t show up for an appointment so I called. No answer. They called back and asked to speak to me. I will never forget the sound of their voice when I answered. They were so broken. They had just relapsed before calling.

They were so afraid and disappointed. I remember thinking that their addiction was going to kill them and it weighed so heavily on me. I will never forget this client. After that call, I sat there awash in the realization that my client would likely die from this and they were my age. Addiction can turn people all out of character, but they were so sweet and kind.

They would give you the shirt off their back. I truly believe they were just too kind for this harsh world. But there was a beautiful ending to all this. See, this was a while ago. My client went to a higher level of care and I found out over a year later that they were sober and doing well and had moved states. I remember crying when I found out they made it all that time later.


10. Rope-A-Dope Diagnosis

I’m an intake clinician and once had this exchange. Me: "What brings you in today?" Him: "I'm here for an addiction. I watch too many adult videos". At this point, not the weirdest thing I've heard, let's go with that. "Okay, tell me about it". Him: "I watch them three times a week, for 15 minutes or so at a time. My girlfriend said I'm an addict and forced me to come in".

I see lots of very extreme cases, but this was so minor that it made me stop for a moment. I sent them to couples' counseling instead.


11. A Few Eggs Short Of A Basket

I had a patient who was psychotic and believed their ex-spouse had been harming their child, when he hadn’t. They went into detail about the unhinged “tests” they would do on their child. I had to go to the door of my office and tell them they had to leave or I was going to call security. For the record, I never asked them about this, either, despite being aware of it from their crisis evaluation.

I'm an activity therapist and my assessment with patients is all about their lifestyle and activity. I was asking them about chores, housework, and their basic routine, and they just came out with this. Eventually, authorities removed the child from their care. The patient eventually cleared from their psychosis and recanted on their belief that their spouse was hurting their child.


12. Just A Moment

grayscale photography of woman in tank topPhoto by Davide Pietralunga on Unsplash

I'm not a therapist, but this stirred some memories for me. Weirdly, throughout the passing of my infant daughter in the hospital, I was quite composed considering. The usual emotions were there with all of us. But it was a few days after I traveled on the ferry to sign her birth and death certificate that it hit me. They gave me a box of all the documents and a few items like her hospital wristband.

On the ferry back, I just sat there on the chair with the box on my lap. As everyone departed the craft, I just sat there. A ferry worker came over to tell me it was ok to leave, and I snapped out of it. I must have visibly had emotion on my face and red eyes. She then said, "Do you need a minute?" with genuine sincerity. I just nodded and sat there for a moment.

She walked away. I took some deep breaths and departed, and I gently nodded to the lady with a smile. She smiled back. I guess I really needed that minute.


13. No Consequences, No Manners

I was working at a camp for children with various psychological disorders, most with some sort of behavioral concerns. The girl I was paired with had a history of aggressive and violent tendencies. We went the whole day without any problems. That was, until we were doing some group physical activity to wind down and focus before leaving for the day.

She didn't like that this meant no longer playing with a certain toy, so she took off her shoe and threw it at the little boy in front of her. He had autism and immediately started crying and screaming. While someone helped him, I turned to the girl to explain to her that what she did was wrong. As I turned towards her, she punched me square in the face, then grabbed a hold of my hair.

She managed to pull out a good chunk. I'm about 5'1 and this girl was maybe one or two inches shorter than me and had about 20 pounds on me, despite being nine years old. Trying to get a safe physical restraint was difficult and comical to say the least. Finally, I got some help from other staff and we were able to calm her down after about 15 minutes.

The kicker was when we told her mom what happened, she basically dismissed the entire thing and laughed about it. SO frustrating because you just know this kind of thing is reinforced at home as there is no punishment. The girl then starts hitting her mom, who grabs and holds down her arms. The little girl laughs, looks at me and the other staff member, and says, "Ugh a little help over here?! Are you going to let her do this to me? She's hurting my arm".

I went home and did this weird laugh/cry for a few hours after that. Luckily you learn pretty quickly not to take things personally and move on, so things were back to normal the next day. I do occasionally look back at that day just baffled at how quickly that whole situation escalated.


14. Believe In Yourself

I was a CPS social worker working in a new country. The first client I met was an addict who turned tricks and was eight months pregnant with an elderly client’s child. She was homeless and disconnected from her family. The plan was to remove the child and place it into foster care immediately, and then she would have supervised visits. The first time I met her she was just such a sad and broken person.

The shame was just seeping out of her. I just tried to love her. I told her what needed to happen to protect her baby. She understood and was willing to work with me for her baby to be safe and healthy. She asked me if she would ever be able to have a child she could be a “proper” mother to. I looked at her and I said: “It will take hard work and determination and there will be lots of hoops to jump through, but I believe you can do it and I will get you help if you are willing to do it".

I wasn’t able to contact her again until I got a call from the hospital where she delivered because of her homelessness situation. I went and saw her. It was a really hard day, she was alone by herself having given birth by herself, and I had to take the baby and place it in foster care. I bawled the entire way there. This beautiful innocent child, this beautiful mother who just got messed up and lost in life.

What a tragedy. And then something changed. Over the next two years of supervised visits, rehab, reconnection with her estranged family, new living arrangements, and therapy, I watched that woman turn her life around through sheer will, blood, sweat, withdrawals, tears, and lots and lots of mental health support and medication.

I was due to go back to my home country, and during the last week there, I was able to share the privilege of starting the transition plan of her baby coming to live with her at her mother’s house for shared care. The baby would still be on the CPS register for a while but the reunification happened. The mother’s smile was dazzling, as she had been gifted dental work to remove all of her damaged teeth and receive dentures.

This woman looked like a new woman, and she was. Honestly, every time I think of her I need a minute to cry. If the only person I was able to help in my career was her, it was worth all of the struggle.


15. Personal Hygiene Is Not Public Hygiene

person with orange nail polishPhoto by sq lim on Unsplash

Needless to say, I’ve seen a lot of things during my time as a therapist, but there is one thing that stays with me. And, uh, it’s not what I would have expected. I once had a client come in, sit down, remove his shoes, and begin cutting his toenails while talking casually about his week. It took everything I had not to laugh, or scream, or somehow do both.


16. I DO See Color

I work in a hospital, and we once had a confused little old white lady who thought she looked like Whoopi Goldberg. She also received a revelation from God saying everyone was going to turn Black by the end of the week. I haven’t noticed any changes yet. When she was saying all this, I was trying so hard to keep a straight face, but I needed a moment after.


17. You Reap What You Sow

I wasn’t the therapist in this situation—I was the client. One day, I’m watching the news and I see my therapist’s face on the television. It was a mug shot. He had apparently been detained for sleeping with one of his clients, which is NOT legal, in case you’re wondering. But here’s the kicker. He was our marriage counselor, and he was married. So was the client.


18. Not Music To My Ears

person playing pianoPhoto by Dolo Iglesias on Unsplash

I’m a music therapist and was engaging with a client when they became very overstimulated and began to thrash their head extremely hard. I was at the piano and they began to slam their head into the piano, so I used my hands to guard their head. Both my hands got completely crushed against the piano and I immediately had bruising and swelling.

By the way, this was all happening within the first five minutes of the session. I spent the remaining 30 minutes trying to regulate the client. They left the session and appeared totally regulated. I left in tears. I’ve been off work for two weeks so far and while my bruises are clearing up, I have nerve damage and pain each day (thankfully, no broken bones).

I miss and love my job, but it’s truly not all rainbows and singing “You Are My Sunshine” every day.


19. Here Today…

I completed an initial assessment with a client, built some great rapport, and agreed to a further appointment to discuss a treatment plan the following week. When that appointment came there was no answer for a while. When I finally found out the truth, I was floored. I got through to the client’s sister, who told me she'd passed from cancer.

She had told me about it the week before, but stated she'd been in remission for a while. It hit me so hard for not just being my first client, but obviously, when working in mental health you're conscious of mental health-related deaths and risk management, so I was completely blindsided and reminded that there are other causes of tragic ends.

It’s stuck with me since and took a while for me to manage my worry when clients don't answer the phone after the first ring.


20. Clean As A Whistle

Not a therapist, but in the mental health field. When I was a nurse on a surgical ward, a guy was being a bit odd and kept wanting his curtains pulled around him. After a while of hearing odd noises, I peeked in and he has SLATHERED himself in hand sanitizer. Head to toe, two full bottles. He looked rather proud of himself for getting rid of the germs, and I had to step outside so as not to laugh in his face.


21. It’s Coming From Inside The Center

black and tan german shepherdPhoto by Sofia Guaico on Unsplash

I used to work as a Specialist Facilitator for a group of resource centers for people with profound disabilities, behavioral disorders, and mental health conditions. One early morning, my colleagues and I were setting up for the day when someone told us to come to the window quickly. I couldn't believe my eyes...One of our older colleagues was swinging through the trees and making monkey noises directly outside the center.

The center was on a regular domestic public street so we had loads of spectators. But it gets more embarrassing. The worst part was that her massive, unruly German Shepherd was running amok beneath her, barking at said spectators. Things came to a head when our colleague leapt on the roof of the center and started howling non-stop. My boss had to call the firefighters.

This woman then propositioned a male firefighter on the roof, and we ended up having to call animal control for the dog while one of our mental health teams helped our colleague. This was all before our service users arrived at the center.


22. You Are Not Alone

I’m not a therapist, but when I was in the hospital two years ago for mental health reasons, I had to fill out a safety plan. One of the parts is to list three people you can reach out to. I was barely 17, so they told me I could write friends but I had no one to put down beside my mom. The nurse even let me have my phone to look at contacts, but I had no one to reach out to.

The nurse just sat there staring at me and then got up and told me she needed a minute. A different nurse came in and apologized to me and helped me do the rest. When I saw the first nurse later, she apologized to me and told me she has a kid my age and it was just hard for her to see someone like her kid suffer the way I was. It’s something I think about a lot.


23. Foot In Mouth

I work in a community residence for adults with mental illness. Most of them are very capable and independent. One girl who is 27 years old constantly acts really dumb for sympathy and will do dumb things because she can, I guess. The first week she was admitted, she tripped on something getting out of bed and she fell on her foot and broke some of the small bones in the foot.

I take her to get her cast and she gets the usual: “Don't get the cast wet, use your crutches, elevate, etc". Since her bedroom was on the second floor, we had to send her back to her mother's house for a few weeks since she would not be able to exit the building in time in case of an emergency. Well five days later, the boot to put over your cast comes in and we call her up saying we'll bring it over.

Her response: “Well, I don't think it'll fit" “Why not?” We ask. "Because I cut my cast off. I got it wet and it was too tight". They didn't give her a second cast and she never used her crutches, claiming they were unstable and she would fall and get hurt if she used them. Oh, but the worst was yet to come. Her foot never healed properly, and two months later she fell and broke it again.

She's since told us she wants her foot amputated because then it wouldn't hurt so much. ~Logic~


24. You’re A Strange Animal

two man talking to each other on grass fieldPhoto by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

I used to work with children who have autism and Down syndrome, which means a lot of play therapy. I had my “I need a minute” moment when one of my clients wanted to sit on my lap while we practiced reciting animal cards followed by their corresponding noises. It ended in disaster. I made a noise that made him laugh so much that he ended up peeing on me from the laughter.

That night was also date night.


25. Gotta Stay Hydrated

Not me, but this was a therapist I was supervising. Her and a client were in her car because it was community-based counseling for severe mental illness. Her client pulled money from her nether regions and put it in her water bottle. She then shook it up and drank the water. She then offers the therapist a sip. Absolutely bizarre and she didn’t know what to do with it.


26. Mistaken Identity

I got a phone call from a co-worker right as my 3 pm client was walking into the office. My co-worker’s words stopped me in my tracks. She said, "Dan’s gone". Now, we had a mutual co-worker named Dan, so my initial reaction was that it was him. I was in shock as she continued to talk about needing to "review the chart". I then realized that she was talking about my client, Dan.

My stomach dropped as my grief changed into something that was still grief but also fear and worry. I was in disbelief that he was gone. He was too young. I was worried it was self-inflicted that I missed something or had failed. I was realized that I had several clients who were friends with him and that they were impacted. It was horrible.

The co-worker hung up the phone with me and I burst out crying in front of my 3 pm client. I had to tell them that I wouldn't be able to meet today because I just had bad news. I needed more than a minute. It was hard. It was never determined if it was accidental or not. My agency provided zero support to me, other than reviewing the chart and telling me "everything looked fine".

It didn't feel fine. It sucked, all around.


27. One Bad Day

a man holding his hands to his facePhoto by Charlotte Knight on Unsplash

I’m a school counselor. I was working in a school and one of the young boys I was seeing and helping was in an accident one night and perished. I didn't find out until the next morning when word got out during the first period. I was called in and rushed over to help with the students, a lot of whom I often saw along with this boy. I tried to stay composed and do my job, but we filled the library with over 100 students who were just finding out and breaking down.

Eventually, I had to crawl behind a bookcase and have a meltdown, although I quickly composed myself. The whole day was a nightmare and heartbreaking. At one point, I had to leave campus to track down the boy’s closest friends, who had run off and driven away. When I found them, the state they were in broke my heart. It’s the hardest thing I have ever had to go through as a counselor and took me weeks to emotionally recover. I still think about it.


28. The Truth Is Out

I am not a therapist, but my husband and I were in therapy after losing a daughter to trisomy 18. The truth was all our family was horrible during this time and even before. It was rough. One day, my husband was finally opening up and talking. Then, he let out this loud, 30-second long toot. Him, me, and the therapist had a really good laugh.

It took us a few minutes, but we composed ourselves and continued the session.


29. Too Young To Lose

I used to be a crisis counselor. I once did an assessment of a 13-year-old kid who, years earlier, lost one of his older brothers, and had lost his other older brother just a couple of months earlier. The way he and his mom talked about it, they had only just started to finally process and put the pieces back together after grieving their oldest when the other brother passed.

This boy had really fallen into a deep depression after. I’ve worked with a lot of youth before, but I still have never seen anyone like this. His sadness just radiated off him like that. I was able to keep it together during the assessment and gave his family some resources for therapy and grief support groups but I had a good, long cry in my car on the way back from the office.


30. Boy Meets Real World

medication pillsPhoto by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash

Once I was with an adolescent client who wanted help because of his impulsive and antisocial behavior. During our fourth session, he tells me that he had bought pills to calm himself. As he continues explaining that he got them for "cheap," he reaches into his backpack and brings out what I only assume were thousands of very powerful…antipsychotics.

Like, these were STRONG. They were restricted for public use and were like $100 a pill. He was totally unaware of the price and only knew that the "friend” who gave them to him expected "some" value/compensation out of the transaction. He didn't want to sell them and was totally unaware of the danger of dealing with the kinds of people who would sell them.

At some point, I had to stop the session and explain to him the severity of the situation. Thankfully I worked in the public sector and managed to get the family a lawyer and help from the municipality in case they were threatened to give back the money. They immediately left the pills with the authorities. For a couple of months, he thought I "betrayed" him, but he kept coming and finally understood that the law can also bring you protection.

He has been doing much better since then. I have to admit that at some point I was in awe of the unawareness of the boy.


31. Let It All Out

A teen I had been working with for about a year was finally "going there" and talking about her deep pain related to her mother. She had cut ties with her biological mother and was having issues with her stepmother. She looked me in the eyes, sobbing, and asked, "Why can't I get a mom to love me? What's wrong with me?" Her vulnerability in that moment reminded me of a small child.

She has since been doing much better. There was a lot of emotion in the room during that session.


32. Not In The Job Description

Oh, this takes me back. But this time, it was my (terrible) therapist who made me take a minute. She stopped me in the middle of a session to tell me that the real problem was that I made everything about myself. Which would have been a valid point, had she not kept talking.

She continued: "Like right now, you're just talking about yourself, and about your life. Every week you just talk about yourself. You know, I just had a baby a few months ago, but you never ask me how that's going. You never ask me about my life, or my friends, or my relationship with my husband. If you're like this with everyone in your life, I can imagine why people don't like being around you".

I left super ashamed and never went back.


33. Too Much Of A Good Thing

shallow focus photography of prescription bottle with capsulesPhoto by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

Went through a couple of years where I was using Xanax too much and eventually got my license taken away. I had to go to a counselor to get it back. She had a weird shed/building she had converted into an office, so I was already feeling uncomfortable walking into someone's backyard for therapy. I got there for my first session and was proven WAY right.

She immediately offered to get me a Xanax prescription after me telling her my history. Thankfully, at this point, I was already clean and had decided to stay that way. It was definitely a what the heck moment I needed to take a minute on. I'm glad I didn't find her at a time when I would have been weak enough to accept the offer. Screw that therapist.


34. Child’s Play

I was 39 and had unearthed my wife's affair only a week previously. I was just a total heartbroken, shattered mess. Well, my therapist’s recovery plan was to "make a man out of me". This guy kept telling me in our sessions that video games were "for children". He was well into his 70s. I fired him. I have since remarried. I still play video games.


35. A Cruel Joke

I am not a therapist, but I was in a therapy program years ago and we got a new patient. Within the span of a week, her mother passed from cancer and her house caught on fire and her dad and sister perished in the accident. The sister passed after slipping from the girl’s hands and falling into flames. I felt so bad for her and I couldn’t comprehend it at first.


36. Pop A Wheelie

black and gray wheelchair on blue floorPhoto by vitor camilo on Unsplash

A client referred to a wheelchair as a "wheely boi". We'd been on a call and I had tears in my eyes from laughing. I don't know why but that humor really gets me. Further context: the client was unable to reassure me of their personal safety and so I had been persuading them to go to the hospital. They responded with, "I'll only go if they give me a wheely boi".


37. At Attention

I was working surveillance one night at a psych ward, keeping a close watch on a mentally ill patient. Right before my shift started, I was briefed that the patient had started eating one of the lightbulbs and went for a nurse. At around 5 am, he woke up and saw me sitting there at the end of his bed. I said good morning and he didn’t reply.

About 15 minutes of silence went by before he stood up and stared out the window. Then he made the most bizarre remark: "A person is most vulnerable while taking a poop". I didn’t sit back down for the rest of my shift.


38. Hard Work

I'm not a therapist, but I go see one. One thing we talk about a lot is that I have a narcissistic mother. She told me that I must be very resilient to be able to put up with my mother because anytime she has an hour-long session with a narcissistic patient, she makes sure to have a break for at least an hour afterward. It kind of helps knowing not even she would be able to stand my mother.


39. Take A Bow

man in black knit cap and black hoodiePhoto by Altin Ferreira on Unsplash

As a new therapist, I had a particularly intense client take a dive, Fight Club-style to try and get me in trouble. It wasn’t really a problem because there was a camera in the room, but I was so shocked that I said to him, "I'm going to sit here and breathe a moment," and I did. That's the only time I've ever needed a minute in the session, but it was scary.


40. Let A Little Too Loose

Once, I had a client with a child who did nothing but scream at the parent for about 20-30 minutes straight. As soon as they left, I cried for 20 minutes due to how emotionally charged the words and accusations were. I tried to defuse it at times, but it continued to rebound quickly until I just had to sit there and watch it happening right in front of me.


41. See You Never

I went to an appointment with my therapist and the door was locked. I waited 15 minutes and called him. No response. He texted me back a few minutes later and said he had the flu and was in bed and sorry he didn’t call to cancel. I went to the grocery store instead. I saw him shopping. He ducked when he saw me. I never went back to him.


42. Good On You

closeup photo of man with beardPhoto by Vinicius "amnx" Amano on Unsplash

I had been working with this client for a while to build their self-esteem and alleviate their depression, and at the end of the session, they told me I was the reason they found the strength to keep going that day. The session had started rough but it ended on such a high note and it felt great to hear that from them. I had to take a minute between sessions and appreciate the improvement the client was able to feel, outside of the compliment.


43. Observing All The Niceties

This past December, I talked to a very angry father of a kid I worked with. He ended the call by shouting down the line, "And you have yourself a happy freaking Christmas!" It was just so funny and weird, I had to take a minute before moving along with my day.


44. Use Your Eyes

A client was going to probate court and thought he'd dress up by putting a non-slip sock on his collar as a tie. Trying to be supportive, I told him, "Nice tie". To which he replied, "It's not a tie, it's a sock, stupid". Yep, that one just about did me in with laughing.


45. We Don’t Deserve Them

selective focus photography of orange and white cat on brown tablePhoto by Amber Kipp on Unsplash

Any time anyone tells me about their pets dying, I need a minute. I do not know your cat. But I love your cat.


46. Sticks And Stones

I’m a school counselor going into the second year of my career. I had a student with who I had grown close. She disclosed her major depression, highly impulsive tendencies, and her eating disorder to me as we talked more and more. But she had gone through extensive therapy and treatment and was getting better with it all. Her parents kept in close contact with me as well.

One day she came to me sobbing, wouldn’t say a word, just grabbed my hand and handed me a thumbtack that she had been scratching herself with. I asked her, “What happened?” When she replied, I nearly burst into tears. She said one of her best friends came up to her and told her she no longer wanted to be friends with her because she had too much “baggage".

The girl later called her parents with me in the room and sobbed to her mom. She said, “I wish you and dad didn’t care about me so much so I could just be done with this". That was the first time I simply could not keep my composure. I asked another counselor to come in and stepped out of the room to sob at the fact we simply never know what a person’s going through, and words hurt so much more than we know.


47. One Heck Of A Curveball

I arrived at a client's house for a session one day. I was doing in-home therapy for adolescents at the time, and it was with a 13-year-old kid. He was a little late getting home from school so he wasn't there yet. His mother has me sit down to wait for him and says that while he's not home, she wanted to ask me something. I never could have guessed her next words.

At that point, I'm assuming it's about her son since that's why I'm there. Nope. She proceeds to ask me why I think her boyfriend won't please her in the bedroom and if I have any suggestions to change that. Really didn't see that one coming.


48. The Ones Who Got Away

pink and white flowersPhoto by Mayron Oliveira on Unsplash

It was my first internship on my path to being a counselor and I was working in a funeral home under the grief counselor there (grief and trauma is my focus). We were taught to be strong and supportive to those grieving, of course, and if we needed to cry, we were supposed to go in the back or to the bathroom. On one memorable occasion, I helped an elderly lady view her husband before the service.

I showed her to a chair in front of the casket—and then watched in despair as she completely lost it. The poor woman laid down on the casket, bawling her eyes out and declaring how much she loved him and missed him. She begged him not to leave her and to come back. That totally destroyed me. I immediately started crying behind her.

She stood up and I sucked it up to help her walk back into the hall to start greeting guests. I thought I had done a good job collecting myself, but my mentor took one look at me and softly said "go to the back room," which I did. I completely lost it for a few minutes, cleaned up, and went back to help with the service. I definitely needed that minute.


49. You Never Know What Can Happen

When I was just starting out as a therapist, I worked for a community mental health clinic at the satellite office, which was located in the basement of a community center. Looking back, it was completely unsafe. No other staff worked there except for me. I was in a cinderblock room, alone, with individuals who had varying degrees of mental health issues. One day, it came to a dark climax.

The incident involved a woman with Schizoaffective Disorder. She was typically very odd in her presentation, with loose associations and bizarre speech. However, she really was a sweetheart overall. But one day, she came into my office holding a giant rock. She was agitated and indicated that people were trying to "mess with her," so the rock was for protection.

I'm grateful that I had an established relationship with her and navigated the session without getting bludgeoned. But afterward, I was shaking and needed a bit to center myself for the next client. I also began to raise concerns about the safety issues (and it didn't change a thing).


50. There’s Someone For Everyone

This wasn’t a client, but I once got an inquiry from someone seeking therapy because he was cheating on his wife…with his mother. I’ll admit, I needed a moment. Then I collected myself, put my game face on, and referred him to a colleague of mine who specializes in infidelity. At the end of the day? You just do the job and process personal feelings and reactions afterward.

That’s why maintaining clinical supervision (even after full licensure) is a best practice.


Doctor using their smartphone
National Cancer Institute/Unsplash

Let's face it. No one looks forward to a doctor's visit.

Anyone declaring otherwise is fibbing and needs to have their head checked–which should be no problem for them to clear their schedule for.

While some visits consulting a medical pro is beneficial for identifying an ailment or for seeking relief, the process can still be unnerving.

Curious to hear from the experiences of strangers online, Redditor sydthakidd asked:

"What was your worst experience at a doctor's office?"

When doctors don't know who or what they're treating, it's a major concern.

Unnecessary Scan

"I was getting a bone density scan for some odd reason, and the doc came in a while later and told me I had Osteoporosis. This was not why I was there in the first place and was completely surprised. I asked him if I could see the chart, and it was for a 70 year old woman. I was a 30 something man, and he had the wrong chart! Turns out I did not have any issues at all, well, bone density related…"

– Curleysound

Pumping Iron

"Oh god, this reminded me of the time I took iron pills daily for four months because LabCorp mixed my results with someone who had severe anemia."

"When I went back to be tested again, my iron levels were SO goddamn high it was almost bad."

– swanlakepirate423

Lethal Prescription

"I went to a clinic to see a doctor about a fever and body aches and informed him I was allergic to NSAIDs.. he said he'd give me something and it was not an NSAID."

"Went home, swallowed the pill, immediate allergic reaction starts.. rushed to the A&E of a hospital where they pumped me full of drugs to stop the allergic reaction.. and the doc there asked me why I took the NSAID."

"I think the A&E doc reported the clinic doctor because he was never seen again."

– bearyken

Bad Communication

"I had a similar thing at a hospital here. Told multiple nurses and staff that I was allergic to aspirin, basically everyone except the doctor. Doctor prescribed me Advil, and assuming he looked at my chart and having no idea that both are NSAIDs, took Advil. Came back to the hospital an hour later in anaphylaxis and difficulty breathing."

"25 years later, had a minor surgery at the same hospital and now they put a bright band around my wrist immediately, and the first thing any person I interacted with asked is 'Do you have any allergies?' Annoying to be asked that 25 times in a 4 hour period, but nice to see that policy has changed to make sure that kind of thing doesn’t happen again."

– impossibilia

Unpleasant Emissions

"I had pinched my syatic nerve pushing carts at work. He accused me of having very kinky sex while my gf was in the room. I told him it was at work, and he assured me he would not judge me if it was from sex. He then gave me OxyContin and told me when ever I needed a refill I should call him and he’d make sure I had plenty. Very weird."

"The other is super mild but he kept farting. Like the whole time he’d fart every few minutes."

– Karsa69420

The last thing these Redditors expected was to endure more suffering after seeing their doctor.

Fix It, Don't Break It, Doc

"I thought I had a broken nose. The doc was showing me, on a heavy glass x-ray plate, that my nose was not broken. But as I was looking up, he dropped the plate on my nose and broke it."

– Wind2Energy

"'I, uh, guess you're here for a broken nose after all, huh?'- Dr probably."

– Chris_the_Otter

The Inappropriate Specialist

"Was 17, had an infected ingrown toe nail. My pediatrician tried cutting and digging it out with what looked like pliers and bracing his leg against the table. After f'king around for a bit he realized he wasn’t going to get it. No numbing gel or anything. Hurt like a mofo. Scheduled an appointment with a podiatrist, he numbed it, had it removed in about two minutes and told me to never see that dr. Again."

– Sam_i_am_68

More Embarrassment Than Pain

"Laid on my side with my back to the door for a prostate exam. Heard people walk by talking while a finger was in my butt and realized the door was open."

– survival-nut

"I want to move to another country on your behalf just from reading this."

– OddEpisode

If at first you don't succeed...

X Didn't Mark The Spot

"The ENT doctor removed a skin cancer from my nose, leaving an ugly scar. Turns out he excised the wrong area and I went to a different doctor to actually remove the cancer."

– DdraigGwyn

"Smug Bastard"

"Not me, but a close friend:"

"She was having debilitating migraines, to the point she couldn’t work or function. She waited nearly a month to see a neurologist. Upon a brief examination, he said:"

“You don’t have anything wrong with you. Just exercise and try not having headaches.”

"Three months later, he finally relented and did an MRI. She had massive lesions on her brain. She was diagnosed with MS. The smug bastard was somehow irritated she had a positive diagnosis. Her health wasn’t as important as his ego."

– wheresmychin

Second Doctor Saves The Day

"I had been sick for a while and had been gaining about 20 pounds a month. I had seen multiple doctors and they just told me I was just eating more than I thought which was ridiculous. I went to a doctor for a skin issue and the new doctor walked in the room and looked at me from across the room and said 'let’s get you to the emergency room' after about five seconds."

"I had end stage cirrhosis of the liver. That kind of sucked. I had a liver transplant 362 days ago and only in the last month have I started to feel like I am getting back to normal."

"Did you know you can get so sick your hair turns gray and then get better and the gray hair goes away? It’s weird honestly."

– blippityblue72

Hands-down the worst experience ever at a doctor's office was before I met with my actual doctor.

While I was waiting in a separate room waiting to go into the doctor's office, the phlebotomist came in to take some blood samples from me.

I have very prominent veins with the bluish hues making them even more visible. Yet, the phlebotomist managed to miss piercing through my veins.

Not once. Not twice. NOT THRICE.

She had to run out to get my primary care physician to jab the needle into me for my fifth–but thankfully his first–successful time.

It's a wonder how I managed to get back home in my highly woozy state.