People Break Down Their Strangest Irrational Fears
Fear can be based on real dangers or past experiences, but what happens when it isn't?
What happens when fear goes beyond "healthy level of caution" to "abject terror"?
Sometimes labeled as phobias, those irrational fears can still be crippling.
Redditor An_Anxious_Mess_Idk asked:
"What is one fear you have that would be considered stupid by most people?"
Never See It Coming
"I’m scared that when I’m driving anywhere late at night and the roads are clear I’ll be struck by one of those land speed record vehicles."
"I’d be afraid it would come out of nowhere and I wouldn’t see it coming."
"I always had this fear (a vehicle coming out of nowhere) when crossing streets as a kid. Suburban streets, mind you..."
"Yeah pretty much, just middle of nowhere you don’t always see everything…"
"I know it wouldn’t happen. So I know it’s an irrational fear."
"Becoming detached on a space walk and drifting off into the void."
"I am not an astronaut, for clarity."
"I can't touch cotton wool or anything of that texture. It gives me the chills and the jitters."
"My wife thinks I'm an idiot."
"Me too. Everyone always tries messing with me by showing me them or chasing me because I actually run as soon as I see them!"
"It's called Sidonglobophobia. The sounds and the static they make when you touch them makes me shake."
"Toilet snakes. Thanks, Stephen King."
"Wife found a 5 foot long black snake in her mom’s washer. She thought it was some sort of gasket that fell in the tub at first….reached for it and it moved."
"Our house is 500 feet away, heard her scream from the front porch."
"Mother-in-law’s house was built 1890 or so. Not very well sealed up anymore."
"Omg. I found a 3-4 foot snake in my hamper once."
"I heard what I THOUGHT was like, a soda bottle slowly letting out fizz, and when I went to investigate, it was A F'KING SNAKE hissing."
"Carried the whole thing, dirty clothes and all, out to the driveway and kicked it over so the snake would slither away."
"I had bombed for spiders the day before. I had opened all the windows and doors for several hours to air the house out. I’m guessing he snuck in then."
"I was ready to burn the place to the ground after that. 😳"
Take A Seat
"I can't sleep with my desk chair facing my bed."
"I have to get up, turn on a light, face it away from me, and then I can go back to bed."
"I get irrationally afraid that I'm going to turn over or blink and look at it and someone is going to be sitting in it watching me sleep."
"No idea where that fear came from."
"Swimming in a lake, or in the ocean without being able to see the bottom."
"I was bit/cut by something once and since then it's a fear I just can't control.
"I will still go and do it though because I hate it when people tell me what to do. Even when that's myself."
"Thank god water shoes were invented or I’d never go in the ocean or lake again."
"I stepped on a horseshoe crab and it freaked me out so bad I can’t go into those bodies of water unless I have shoes on."
"We had a little sand shark swimming by us one trip to the ocean."
"Haven’t been able to get past ankle deep since. It’s been probably closer to 14 years ago now."
"Fear of mirrors."
"Creepy things they are."
"I'm specifically scared of mirrors in the dark, or any reflective surface."
"I'm convinced that if I look at it, I'm gonna see something horrible standing behind me."
"Same but I’m not scared of seeing something behind me."
"I’m scared of seeing something in it that could possibly reach or step out."
"Mirrors in the dark feel like a door to another dimension to me and I have no idea why."
"My worst nightmare is getting up at night to go to the bathroom, going past my mirror and I'll see myself in the mirror but the me in the mirror does something different than me..."
"It's that bad that I'll walk past my mirror with my eyes closed at night."
"UNBLINKING EYES ALWAYS STARING"
"Hate to break it to you, but fish don’t blink when they’re alive either."
"You're... not wrong. By the law of my own phobia, I now have a fear of living fish too."
"The sharks got your back bro, they wink."
- salinasediscovery eye roll GIF by Shark WeekGiphy
Mothra Is A Monster
"I get teased all the times about it and my reasons and people try to trick me in to liking them or admitting it's fake.
"Apparently being scared of spiders is ok (I like spiders) but terrified of moths is weird because I like butterflies and 'they are the same thing'."
That Moth Fear Is Justified
"May 2020, my husband and I took off on a road trip. Everything was mostly shut down but that’s fine, what we like to see and do are outdoor, nature things. We stopped at a state park in Oklahoma that had only partially opened that very day."
"We walked around for a bit, let the dog run around as we were the only ones there. Then I had to pee. Now I’m a chick and 'I’ve got to find somewhere to pee' is pretty much always happening or going to within half an hour."
"The usual state park bathroom places were one hole situations but in little concrete buildings….nice enough, I’ve used way worse."
"When we first opened the door a LOT of moths flew out. I’m not scared of moths but it was a LOT. So we let them fly away and I went in. I’m sitting there beside one of those large toilet roll things….the one foot diameter ones with the black cover and you pull the paper from under."
"Even as I gave the toilet paper a yank, a tiny part of my brain knew what would happen. A truly biblical number of moths burst out from the bottom of the paper roll when I pulled."
"I ran/hobbled with shorts pulled down and toilet paper in hand just screaming out of the bathroom. My husband all but dropped he was laughing so hard. My poor dog was sure I was being attacked and ran into the bathroom barking and growling."
"It was all hilarious in hindsight. But trying to explain to anyone how moths could make me run screaming is difficult to say the least."
June bugs crawl out of the ground in the summer because they're mini demons emerging from Hell. I cannot be convinced otherwise.
So what's your irrational fear?
Want to "know" more?
Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
Never miss another big, odd, funny or heartbreaking moment again.
- People Share The Most Bada** Historical Facts They've Ever ... ›
- People Who Always Overthink Everything Break Down The Time ... ›
- People Describe The Weirdest Side Effect They've Ever ... ›
- People Share the Weirdest Phobias They Struggle With On A Daily ... ›
- People Open Up About Their Weirdest Phobias ›
- People Open Up About Their Weirdest Phobias ›
- People Share the Weirdest Phobias They Struggle With On A Daily ... ›
- People Share the Weirdest Phobias They Struggle With On A Daily ... ›
- Specific phobias - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic ›
- Why Do We Develop Certain Irrational Phobias? - Scientific American ›
- List of phobias - Wikipedia ›
- Phobias: Symptoms, types, causes, and treatment ›
- 29 Uncommon Phobias You've Probably Never Heard Of ›
- List of Phobias: How Many Are There? ›
- List of Phobias: Common Phobias From A to Z ›
- Phobias and Irrational Fears - HelpGuide.org ›
- Weird Phobias You've Likely Never Heard Of | The Recovery Village ›
- Here are some of the strangest phobias one can have ... ›
Reddit user OmarBessa asked: 'Redditors who have gotten genetic tests, what's the weirdest thing you learnt from your DNA?'
At the end of the last century DNA laboratory companies began to offer direct-to-consumer home DNA test kits.
According to The Center for Genetics and Society, as of November 2023 more than 26 million people have taken an at-home ancestry DNA test.
These tests have helped people find and reunite with long lost family members. However not all revelations were well met.
Unknown ancestry was discovered.
Infidelity and secrets and lies were also exposed by these tests which led to strife in some families.
Reddit user OmarBessa asked:
"Redditors who have gotten genetic tests, what's the weirdest thing you learnt from your DNA?"
"So my dad is from the Philippines and my brothers and I all assumed our whole lives we are half Filipino and half Polish/German from my mom. Even my brothers married Filipino women and are very much into the family culture."
"Anyway I’m the only one who did the dna test and it came back we are only a 1/4 Filipino."
"There’s a mix—1% Japanese, 1% South American, etc...—but the big surprise was our missing 1/4 was Iranian/Romanian."
"My brothers flat out refuse to believe it."
"Learned that I (White) had a 100% Nigerian ancestor around 130 years ago. Now I want to dig deeper to find out who it was!"
"What’s funny is that I spent a gap year in Nigeria as a teenager, and I love the culture and food and still have a lot of Nigerian friends."
"It’s still a big part of my life."
"For 29 years, it was assumed that my dad who raised me was not my biological father, that I was the product of an affair my mother was having."
"I came out with blond hair, freckles and blue eyes. A stark difference to my tanned, dark featured dad."
"My dad chose to raise me as his own anyways, refusing paternity tests. I was never made to feel like I wasn't his."
"I took 23&Me simply out of curiosity and found out that he is in fact my biological father."
"My dad has told me he didn't want to know the results either way, but I let it slip showing my sister's the app one time at dinner."
"He didn't react, but I got an extra big bear hug getting on the train to leave that night."
"It was assumed when my mom found out she was pregnant that the pregnancy was the product of the affair. My features only solidified that assumption."
"He was already raising my mom's first daughter as his own, who he'd met when she was 2 and told my mom he wanted to keep raising the kids together. They got married and he adopted her a few months after I was born."
She was also treated so much as his that I didn't even know she was adopted by him until I was a teenager."
"My parents stayed together for 14 years, and to this day are still best friends."
"As an adult, my father-in-law found out his mother was actually his grandmother and his older sister was actually his mom."
"Things were different in the late 30's."
"I think this is quite common, especially when the real mother is still very young and in school when they get pregnant."
"The grandparents will adopt the baby and say they’re the mum’s sister/brother, and so the mum can continue their life as normal as possible."
"The daughter I adopted and I are actually distantly related!"
"As an adoptee who is considering doing the DNA thing, this intrigues me."
"My brother (also adopted, not a blood related sibling to me) did the DNA thing and found his birth family! I got to meet two of his half siblings. It was fascinating seeing 'nature vs nurture' in real time."
"There were certain mannerisms, etc... that all three of them did, and then other things my brother did that are definitely from the family we were raised in."
"Really cool to watch."
"Not me but my grandma got a DNA test done because she was sold as a baby—this happened back in the 30s (Depression Era, USA)—and never knew her biological parents, so a family member urged her to do it so we could maybe find them."
"We found both sides—a half-sister from her bio mom and a half-brother from her bio dad."
"Although it was kinda weird to realize we have family close by (only 20 miles away in one case), it was much weirder for the bio families to discover my grandma’s existence, since neither side had anything to do with the other."
"Her bio mom and bio dad seem to have crossed paths at some point in the same city. He was a married man, she was an older teen. Not sure if it was a one night stand or whatever but her bio mom was pregnant as a result of that night."
"At some point in her pregnancy, she checked into a home/hospital for pregnant unwed teen mothers (using a fake name). The bio mom was told the home would find homes for the babies, so she delivered and left."
"Bio mom went on to marry and have her own family, while bio dad likely never knew of the situation."
"As it would turn out, the home was not adopting out babies, rather selling them. Since my grandma was blonde and blue eyed she was bought quickly for a higher price by a woman."
"My grandma didn’t know until her teens that she was sold."
"My grandparents—they were married at the time—had a biological son they gave up for adoption before my mother was born and never told any of us about."
"Turns out some of the extended family knew my grandma had been pregnant before my mom but kept it a secret."
"If it was during the great depression in the US it was sadly something that happened. Not even just with babies."
"Some families had to give away their children or some of their children (I can't imagine the trauma for everyone involved) because they couldn't afford to feed themselves, let alone a child."
"My husband's grandmother told me about family members she knew who had to find new families for their children or even send them to live in an orphanage where they would at least be fed.
"Sometimes they were able to get the kids back after finances improved but not always."
"My ancestry is exactly what I grew up being told, I have several family members who were really into genealogy".
"But I found out I have a first cousin we didn't know existed."
"Apparently, my uncle had gotten married and had a son no one knew about when he was 19 and stationed across the country that he bailed on."
"Ends up my bio dad was quite the dabbler."
"None of his relatives were surprised I existed, just that I was the only stray kid that did (so far). I keep an eye on my results for any other mystery siblings!"
"I told my new half siblings if I ever went to a family reunion I'd show up in a shirt that said 'Spare Parts' or 'I'm your plot twist'."
Solving Unsolved Mysteries
"I had the same suspicions when I took my test. Turns out it was my grandmother instead with the secret babies she put up for adoption."
"Didn’t find out until 6 years after she passed away so we’re never getting answers as to what happened."
"Also got a surprise contact by the police, as I was a high match to a John Doe that was found drowned on the shores of Lake Superior in 1991."
"That was a fun family tree rabbit hole to dive down. Turned out to be a half 1st cousin from my grandmother’s firstborn."
"The local police were great about informing me and communicating. The case was assigned to them by the provincial police who were clearing out thousands of cold cases."
"I was also very excited to assist because I’d done a rather in-depth family tree about a decade prior."
"They have a team of forensic genealogists, most of them on a volunteer basis, and they were incredibly good at finding information. A lot of it was birth/marriage records and working off random dna matches to try and figure out where the Doe related to the match."
"In my case, I was a 422cm match to the deceased so we looked from my maternal great-grandparents on down."
"I assisted myself on a couple of cases afterwards, all just unidentified bodies found in water or bush, nothing criminal that would require clearance."
"To be honest, I felt a little morbid because of how interested I was in the process. I had to temper my enthusiasm when responding to the police initially."
I didn’t know the person, I had zero attachment to them and it was more of a scientific interest."
"It wasn’t until weeks later when I realized how close of a relation it was that it hit me. That plus he was likely murdered made me feel bad about my earlier enthusiasm."
"But in the cases I volunteered on, those people were loved and missed."
"One fella was a cousin of a beloved NHL enforcer that passed away a year before and I recognized the names of the immediate family we had to contact. They still had Facebook groups dedicated to searching for him with posts until the day before we contacted them."
"I’m sure there’s a relief at having answers but grief at the loss being confirmed."
More and more people are exploring their roots through DNA testing.
Have you taken a test? What was your DNA revelation?
Content Warning: Discussions of Addiction
We've all heard of strange, inedible things that people have made a habit of eating, like paper or glue. Unfortunately, there are instances where eating these things works more like an addiction than a dietary choice.
There are a lot of other things that people might become addicted to, too, that have nothing to do with food, but which also are not the usual culprits for addiction.
If someone that we know is addicted to something unusual and isn't hiding it the same way that someone addicted to drugs might, it can be a really strange experience to witness.
Curious about others' experiences, Redditor JARClol asked:
"What is the weirdest thing you are or saw someone addicted to?"
"I used to know a girl who was addicted to eating those little polystyrene chips that are used for packaging."
"She always had a bag of them with her. The noise she made when she was munching on them used to set my teeth on edge."
"Don't tell her about the biodegradable ones (which actually taste nutty)."
A Hairy Situation
"A roommate in college was addicted to hair. She collected hair and made hair people. She would use the community vacuum cleaner, take out the hair, wash it, and make hair people."
"She would also go to salons asking for the cut hair 'for her family’s garden' and then proceed to make hair people."
"She had hundreds of them with names and stories about them."
"I kept my hairbrush locked up after it was cleaned out the first time."
Pen and Ink
"Eating markers, like the tube of it. Inside the casing. I told his mother and her reply was, 'Oh, he's doing it again,' like... Again? Toxic ink? Again? I don't mean licking it. I mean chewing. Black ink in saliva and swallowing the ink-soaked sponge."
"I knew a dude in high school who ate the ink from pens. Every class, gnawing on a pen, eventually breaking it open then sucking on it like a straw. He regularly would be drooling ink. I left that school sophomore year, and I wonder whatever happened to Abe."
"Abe? Was his last name LINKoln?"
The Strawberry Milk Fan
"I used to work with a girl who would just chug liters of strawberry milk. Every time I went to the toilet after her it stank of milk. She was eventually diagnosed with Type-Two Diabetes and gave up the milk… briefly."
"Yeah, I'm not surprised. I'm Type-Two, and strawberry milk usually has more sugar in it than chocolate milk. The smaller-sized cartons you get at lunch usually have 22 to 40 grams of sugar in them and a s**tton of sodium (no, I'm not joking), so a liter would have hundreds of grams in it."
"I got it after 23 years of poor choices and family medical history. She got it by decimating her pancreas and s**tting a machine gun."
"And you said briefly, meaning she's probably worse off. Like, I still have sugar, but I try and have less of it. I f**k up a lot because it's hard, but f**k, if she went back to drinking liters of it, I wouldn't be surprised if she's had some other issues."
Just a Taste
"My best friend used to eat fabric softener in high school. She wouldn't have huge mouthfuls or gulps; she would take just enough to coat her tongue."
"She would keep bottles of it hidden around her room so she could have a taste whenever the mood struck her. I love her to death, but she’s a strange one, lol (laughing out loud)."
Weren't We All?
"I used to be addicted to Candy Crush back in the day. After running out of five lives, I couldn't wait for them to be available so I would forward my clock just to be able to play. My phone was set to the year 2030ish by the time I stopped playing."
"Wow. You time traveled. That's a loophole though, isn't it? You never had to pay for fake things."
Just After a Few Beers
"Not so much addicted but I had a friend in college that would huff the fluid in his zippo lighter when he was really drunk."
"Treavor wasn’t allowed to have his lighter after a few beers."
"I had a good friend in high school who had asthma who’d take hits off his inhaler, all day long. We’d be talking and he’d just casually whip it out whenever and take a hit. Ended up going to bed a couple of years after we graduated and never woke up."
"I'm sorry. He probably f**ked his heart up. I hate taking my inhaler. It makes my heart race and makes me shake and feel like s**t."
"Growing up, I used to take two Albuterol vials in my slow, old 90s nebulizer during asthma episodes. That thing was a TANK."
"I got a brand-spankin' new travel nebulizer in college and remember that first time I used two vials with it. I thought I was having a heart attack. That thing is POWERFUL and I wasn't expecting it. Two vials were far too strong and had me shaking for over an hour."
"I still have it to this day, and when I take it once a year or so for a flare-up, even one vial still makes me shake a bit."
The Truth Behind the Problem
"I visited Nairobi for work around 2000 and the street kids all walked around with a small bottle of glue stuck to their upper lip so they were basically sniffing glue continually. It was extremely sad."
"Probably something similar here in the Philippines. Homeless street kids sniff a plastic bag with a bit of contact cement in it to get rid of/to numb the hunger sensation. Not an addiction but a survival tactic… in my opinion."
"Same in Zambian. Not stuck to their lip but carried and sniffed when needed. It was apparently to numb the body from feeling the cold in winter. Painfully sad."
Never Underestimate Soda
"My first-ever girlfriend was genuinely addicted to Coca-Cola (self-admitted). She would have a glass as soon as she woke up and drink it all day."
"The one or two times I was there when her family had run out of it, she was irritable, anxious, and so grumpy until she was able to get down to the store to buy more."
"Strangely, it wasn't even the caffeine or sugar she was addicted to, because having a coffee or a different type of soda wasn't enough to ease her withdrawal symptoms."
"I had a friend who slept with a cooler of Diet Pepsi next to the bed. He had a large Slurpee cup that was always full, no matter where he was."
"We did a five-day offshore fishing trip. He ran out late on day four."
"As we pulled the boat into the dock, he literally ran and jumped onto the dock and raced to the soda machine at the far end."
That's One Way to Use It
"My Spanish teacher was addicted to Vix VapoRub! Not to use it traditionally, though."
"She was eating it."
"Apparently, she knows that it's not a secret, because she ate it using a tongue depressor right in front of us, during the first week of school. I guess she figured we couldn't poke fun at her if she owned it."
"She literally demonstrated! She said her grandfather taught her and she likes the consistency/overwhelming scent."
"I can't imagine it's good for her."
Live to Game
"Rocket League. I'm not even joking. The guy was in his 20s and playing up to eight hours a day."
"He used to be super social and became a hermit pretty much for seven years. He would pretend to be sick at work so he could play three days straight."
"He lost his whole social life. He spent New Year's every one of those years sitting in a dark room with windows covered, playing that game."
"I tried to get him to stop but never worked."
"I used to be addicted to chewing on ice, or maybe obsessed. I would bring a cup full of crushed ice with me everywhere. When I went to the beach, I would just bring a bag of ice from the gas station and sit and eat it."
"I stopped for ages and then became temporarily obsessed again during one of my pregnancies. I was checked for vitamin deficiencies both times but nothing came up."
The Use of Chapstick
"I'm addicted to chapstick. I can't go more than three hours without applying it."
"I think my lips are relying on the chapstick now because they get dry so quickly. And it feels like nails on a chalkboard when they do, I can't focus on anything else besides my lips being dry until I get some chapstick, lol (laughing out loud)."
"Here’s a pro tip someone told me: before you put chapstick on wet your lips so there’s actual moisture to lock in."
"I also find Vaseline is way cheaper and way more effective. I use it once in the morning and once before bed and I’ve gotten chapped lips like five times in the last seven years."
An Interesting Choice!
"Judge Judy. And it was me. My boyfriend introduced me to the show in my mid-thirties and I binged it on YouTube, listening to it whilst working in our warehouse/driving/cleaning/anything."
"Six years later, if I have a task that I really need to get into productive mode for, I put her on and my brain shifts gears."
"At one point, it felt weird to work without her voice in the background yelling at people. She’s like my white noise. She’s my default soundtrack."
These accounts were honestly fascinating, and in some causes haunting, to read.
It just goes to show that, first of all, we all like different things, and second of all, you never know what is going to qualify as "too much of a good thing" for one person compared to someone else.
No matter how long ago we saw it, there are some scenes or images from movies that still send shivers down our spine or keep us awake at night to this very day.
Pennywise appearing in the sewer in It, Janet Leigh surprised in the shower in Psycho, Freddy Kreuger's tongue popping out of the telephone in A Nightmare on Elm Street.
Of course, some of the scariest, most disturbing, or most emotionally traumatizing scenes from films might have been featured in films outside of the horror genre.
Even more shockingly, some of these films were primarily marketed towards children!
Redditor alina_love was curious to hear which non-horror films the Reddit community saw as children still send shivers down their spines today, leading them to ask:
"What's a non horror movie that traumatized you as a kid?"
It Was Tim Burton, After All...
"'Pee Wee's big adventure'."
"Large Marge scared the crap out of little me."
"I was even scared of the fortune teller."- BlueStarrSilver·
With A Title Like "Temple Of Doom"...
"'Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom'."
"The scene where the guy gets his heart ripped out traumatized me for years."- Pbhf
That Funeral Scene Though...
"Fear of death, fear of losing a friend, fear of bees, fear of puberty."- heidismilesmacaulay culkin kiss GIFGiphy
Jurassic Park's Got Nothing On This...
"'The Land Before Time'."
"Watching Little Foot’s mother die was awful."- HourglassSass
He'll Always Regret Not Bringing Her To The Museum...
"'Bridge to Terabithia'."- jumpstart-the-end
"Everything goes so well and it falls apart SO FAST and your left absolutely traumatized."- VortexDestroyer99
The Reason People Hold On To Their Appliances For As Long As They Do...
"The Brave Little Toaster'."- Catgurl
"The junkyard scene alone was responsible for so many nightmares."- ManChildMusicianbrave little toaster animation GIF by Coolidge Corner TheatreGiphy
And Let's Not Forget The Coachman's Smile...
"Disney’s version of 'Pinocchio'."
"The scene where kids are turned into donkeys and kept on the island and then resold was f*cking weird."
"You felt bad for that bully kid after he looked sad and nobody understood what he said because he was a donkey."- earnestlikehemingway
Few Things More Sad And Scary Than Deforestation
"'Ferngully: The Last Rainforest'."
"That evil tree scared me so bad."- slutsdotnet
Anything But "Truly Scrumptious"...
"The 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang' Childcatcher guy!"
"I'm still scared of him!"- Jet_Maypenchild GIFGiphy
Offing Children One By One...In A Children's Movie!
"'Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory' boat scene."
"Honorable mention of claustrophobia when Augustus gets stuck in the chocolate tube."
At Least We Know He Had A "Sole"...
"Who Framed Roger Rabbit."
"That poor shoe….."- dalalice5555
At Least The Song Is Catchy...
"Not even Artax, which was awful, but the Rockbiter and his good strong hands."- marxychick1Neverending Story 80S GIFGiphy
Dorothy Gettying Electro Shock Therapy Says it All...
"Return to Oz."- Jeff_Steelflexx
"Horrifying! What about the animated wig heads?"- weensfordayz
The Reigning King Of Childhood Trauma
"Old Yeller."- IceTech59
"I remember watching this on TV during, I think, Wonderful World of Disney (Sunday nights were Disney night on TV)."
"Cried and cried and cried."
"I've never been able to watch it again and I've never shown it to my kids!"- crowwitch
Not All Friendships Are Tenable... A Terrifying Thought
"'The Fox and the Hound'."
"Still makes me incredibly sad, lol."- mental_reincarnationbest friends friendship GIFGiphy
Sometimes, writers and filmmakers simply overestimate what might go over a child's head.
Or, for that matter, they might underestimate their emotional capacity.
Regardless, ask any of Fairuza Balk's fans which is scarier, Return to Oz or The Craft, and their answer will be immediate...
(... and it won't be The Craft...)
Sometimes it's fun to toy with someone.
Especially if it's an enemy or a loved one who simply deserves a good ribbing.
Some cryptic sentences can send anyone into a tailspin.
And oh the fun that can be had.
You have to be as vague as possible and as sincere.
You have to sell the sincerity. That's vital!
And then just watch them implode.
Redditor theary18 wanted to hear about the most creative ways to throw somebody off their game, so they asked:
"What is the best thing to say to someone to subtly f**k with their head?"
I love to come up behind someone and say "I can't believe they would treat you this way. I got you girl!"
Then I scurry away.
It's YOU!For Me GIF by Liz HuettGiphy
"Just tack on the phrase 'given your history' to any question you ask someone."
"Are you sure you want another drink? Given your history?"
"Do you mind driving? Given your history?"
"I moved to my elementary school in the 5th grade. Mid-year, a boy came up to me and said, 'I really thought you were gonna be somebody.' I'm now 45 and I'm still like, what the f**k was he talking about?"
"Likely something they heard a parent say to someone. Kids love to repeat the dumb stuff you say the next day at school."
"All jokes aside he probably thought you were someone else. I've done the same things countless times and it's happened to me a few."
"I would interpret this as this kid hearing there's gonna be a 'new kid' and then their imagination ran wild as to who this new star is going to be, that it will be like in some kid movie or something, but you turned out to be just another kid student."
I Like You
"I don't get why other people don't like you."
"Another variant is..."
"I don’t care what everyone else is saying. I think you’re great!"
"They’ll take it as a compliment at first but then they’ll think about it and it’ll eat away at them."
"A guy I work with says this time to me every time I help him 'I don’t care what everyone else says about you you’re alright. Literally everyone else. We did a poll.' XD guy says some crazy s**t. When he started he tried to convince us he was a flat earther. He just likes fucking with people."
“'I heard about you.'"
"Whenever I hear this I always respond with 'if it’s all good, it’s all lies.' Usually shows my sense of humor and if it is bad things they heard it usually lightens the mood."
"Years ago I worked at a cafe and function venue which was sold after a few years to a new catering company. The first time I met the new restaurant manager I introduced myself and she exclaimed 'Oh, you’re winoforever!' and I was a bit weirded out. Then not long later I met the new owner and she also said 'Oh, you’re winoforever!' I still wonder twenty years later what they’d both heard about me."
ProblemsDrunk Party Girl GIFGiphy
"Go up to someone at a party and say: 'I just want you to know that personally, I have no problem with you being here.'"
"I once got drunk and effectively said that to a girl at a wedding. 'I don't care what everyone else thinks, I always liked you' or something like that."
Parties are the perfect setting for these shenanigans.
Especially with the drinkers.
But get them at least semi-sober.
I got YouOkaay What GIF by ABC NetworkGiphy
"If you are chatting with someone and another person walks up look at them and say 'I just want you to know that I was defending you' then turn and walk off. It's a good 2fer."
"'We know, but don't worry, we'll keep it a secret.'"
"A friend in high school (actually still a current friend) said something similar to me and it definitely f**ked with my head. 'You know you're not fooling anyone, right?' He wouldn't elaborate and it took me the rest of the day to figure out he was f**king with me. As a guy with imposter syndrome, especially as a teen, that had me turned for a bit."
"If it’s someone you interact with repeatedly, always introduce yourself as if you’ve never met before."
"I keep doing this to a guy I see very occasionally. He's a friend of my sister-in-law, but I've introduced myself to him at least four times. Right now, I'm trying to picture his face and I totally can't, so if I see him again, I'll introduce myself again. He remembers me though. And I don't have this issue with anyone else, I just can't remember this guy's face for some reason."
"You really need to brush your teeth."
"Somebody jokingly left a message on the 'tip' line that said 'Take a breath mint.'"
"I'm like 90% sure it was just the first thing that came to his head but it f**ked with me for weeks. I was self-conscious when talking to people, being close to them with my mouth open, and I'd constantly be brushing longer/harder taking mouthwash a couple extra times a day, and using mints."
Head IssuesThink About It GIF by IdentityGiphy
"Give all your friends a few dollars to compliment their hat if they’re not wearing one. When 50 people insist you’re wearing a hat, you start to think you’re wearing a hat. It will drive them insane."
Hats off for that last one. That's harmless but devious.
Do you have any tips to add? Let us know in the comments below.