Being a teacher is one of the most soul-draining careers available. Every year you're blessed a group of students, with some of them actually excited to learn. While you can't teach everyone, you can reach out to them on an emotional level, connecting on things not always taught from a curriculum book.
However, you have to be ready for what they might say when they finally feel comfortable enough to open up to you.
Reddit user, u/DATCATGOSPLAT, wanted teachers to tell all about:
Ask for help how to get over her laziness. She was getting regular migraines so would have to hide and sleep it off. Due to her parents she learned that this was laziness.
I had a 16 year old student say: "I heard my parents fighting downstairs last night. My 10 year old brother came into my room and got into bed with me crying, because he's just now realizing we don't have a normal family".
Reminds me of when I was 10 and shared a room with my little sister who was maybe 4-7. I had to comfort her because she was crying while my parents were fighting outside. And I was praying that night that my brother was asleep since he's a deep sleeper and wasn't crying alone in his room. It was a tough few years.
"My sister didn't wake up today." Her sister complained of headaches the night before because she hit her head. Parents didn't think anything was seriously wrong. They took her off life support a few days later, she was 9. Her sister? 5 years old.
I'm not a teacher, but in junior year a teacher asked a classmate of mine where he saw himself in 10 years, & he quietly replied "dead."
The number of students who don't expect to live past college is surprising. Multiple people my age (high schooler) have told me that they don't really have a plan for college because they probably won't be around that long anyway.
Assignment was to write a poem about something you liked to pretend. Students poem started "I like to pretend that I have friends." This was in first grade.
I teach kindergarten and a girl told me "my brother died" and went on loosely about how he died, but it was a while ago since I forgot the words.
Brother, 15, had an asthma attack, had no puffer on him, died.
Now she's very emotional and going through therapy at 5 years old. It's been probably three months.
Middle school, they went on a field trip yesterday and one kid was sad because they wouldn't be at school so he wouldn't get lunch. They were fed at the field trip, but he was totally concerned that he wasn't going to get fed that day.
Principal (to class on day one): "Kindergarten is not like pre-school. Attendance matters. It's very important that you be here everyday."
Kindergartner: "What if you have to get a blood transfusion?"
I'm trying to wrap my head around the circumstances where this even needs to be said to kindergartners. It's not like they have a lot of control over their own lives, what they have a big problem with 5 year olds playing hooky and smoking cigarettes in an alley?
I've had it all.
Middle school teacher of 9 years in a very poor district here. I have had students whose siblings died to gang shootings, cop shootings, have had homeless kids, a pregnant 7th grader in my class. I've had it all.
A couple in the running:
"My boyfriend was shot in front of me and died in my arms. The ambulance we called never arrived."
"Mom went to go stay with my older sister [three states away] for a while. She told me I'm in charge of [his twin 15 year old brother] and we need to make sure we stay at [specific shelter]" ... she never came back.
A visibly sick student in class "Mom said she's working, and I tried to call my dad. He hug up on me... He doesn't care about me anyways."
On the first day of school (and the first day of my career) "How was your morning?" "Dude took two to the chest on his front porch on my way to school, don't worry though, I didn't see his face, what are we doin' today?"
"Why should I even try? I'm just stupid anyway"
He has a learning disability and has a hard time with reading and that's not to mention his ADHD with ODD (he sees a therapist every week and is way better). This trickles down to just about every subject he has. It broke my heart when he said that.
A 6 year old preschool kid took my hand and wanted to show me something he had drawn. The drawing was in dark colors and sort of angry-looking. He explained that he had drawn his heart, which was broken and hurting very bad. He said it wasn't any fun when his heart hurt like that.
He was often being excluded from the group by his classmates, sometimes even bullied. He didn't have the social skills to communicate well with his friends, which led to him being very misunderstood even though he always meant well.
"Can you be my mom?" - 15 years old, totally serious.
"This is my real family." - different student referring to the teachers and friends at school.
"I don't deserve this" - teen when given a sweater on a very cold day.
I hear a lot of this stuff. I wish there was so much more I could do.
Sets of 2....
I co-taught a class one year and we had a few twins in our classes (split between different periods).
With one set of twins, one girl was a fantastic student. She was bright, conscientious, diligent, and was a joy to have in the classroom. Her sister, on the other hand, was a mess. Never knew what was going on, had a terrible attitude, was completely disorganized, and was often disruptive. If I ever called on her, she'd roll her eyes and say "ugh I don't know" as if I was being unreasonable in expecting she be able to answer a question about something I just said 3 seconds earlier.
My co-teacher met their parents at parent-teacher night. Apparently the parents spent most of the time talking about the "good" twin and actually called the other one "the bad twin" when they did talk about her.
I felt bad after hearing that.
Friend of mine adopted a student when he turned 18 because his parents abandoned him for being gay. They make a happy dorky little family. They always got along well, she had a soft spot for him, and he has somewhere to go on school breaks. 😁
Rips my heart right out of my chest.
My mother was a teacher for nearly 30 years. She spent the last 10 years at a middle school that was pretty hard up in the Tulsa public school system. She had a very good student who came to school every day in the same clothing. We can call him J. The clothing was always washed but even so around halfway through the year, his clothing was becoming tattered and stained. The other students began to notice and make comments. The school tried to give him clothing but he refused. He would not except a hand out.
A few teachers came up with a plan for the school put on a contest where the winner was given some new, very nice, school clothing. This contest was set up for J to win. This way he could have new clothing and not feel as though he was given anything.
J won the contest. He accepted the new clothing gladly. The next day he was still wearing his old clothes. My mom asked him why he was not wearing the new clothing.
"Those are my trophies. I have them hanging on my wall."
Rips my heart right out of my chest.
"Ms. Spidey, do you know how to get [local electric company] to turn your power back on? I get paid today, but they pay me on a card, so...do I get out cash and get a money order, and where do I take it to?"
Kid was sixteen.
But kid got their power turned back on, that day, all by themselves. I didn't do spit or biscuits but teach them how to talk to people in call centers and make the introduction to the CSR.
And then later their power bill got reduced, because the school social worker has programs for that sort of thing, the local power company sent them some energy-saving free stuff, including some lightbulbs (kid and their siblings had been short some lights at home for a while,) and we got their water and sewer discounted as well.
School social worker's a pal. Their surviving parent was trying, it's just hard with a parent of their own who isn't well, that many kids and two fast-food jobs.
Kid is in college now. Damn near full ride. Commutes from home to save money, puts their housing stipend towards the family rent, utilities and gas for their own old Toyota. Their parent looks like they just took their first breath in ten years.
I'm proud of all my students, but especially that one.
Last week I asked my freshmen what their weekend plans were, and one kid said he was finally meeting his birth mother. He was nervous and excited and said he had so many questions to ask her.
Monday rolls around and I see that he looks sad. I ask him how the meeting went and he said in the saddest voice, "she didn't show."
I wanted to cry right there.
High school teacher at a school for at risk youth so I get a lot of depressing stuff. I really bonded with one student about comic books and even let him borrow my first edition Umbrella Academy comics. He was homeless and living at a friends house on a yoga mat on the floor for the better part of a year. He asked me to adopt him :( wish I could, buddy. I wish I could. My students are the reason I want to become a foster parent though.
I'm a counselor for kids in the foster program.
Kid: "Why does everyone else in my class have one dad but I have different ones all the time?"
Foster program can be really tough on kids.
Me: "So, what are you most looking forward to when you go to college?"
Student: "Oh, I've never had my own bed to sleep in before."
"That seems like..."
I'm not a teacher, but when I was in school, a classmate, when asked to introduce herself said her name and that her parents died when she was young which is why she lived with her aunt and sat back down.
That seems like the sort of thing you learn to do so that everyone knows right off the bat. You don't have to constantly correct people, "Oh, it'll actually be my aunt, not my mom..." or deal with their shock and pity over and over again. This way you get it all over with in one fell swoop.
"The poor kids..."
Not me but my mother-in-law is a substitute nurse for a few schools, one of which is mostly pretty poor kids. Well at the beginning of one Friday a boy came with his backpack and his sister's to leave is for the nurse. He was kinda nervous/sad that the regular nurse was out and my MIL said "maybe I can help, what does she normally do with your backpacks?" He blurted out "she fills them with food for us!" The poor kids didn't have much food at home so that angel nurse was sending them home on Fridays with food to last them the weekend.
"I'm not a teacher..."
I'm not a teacher but my 3rd grade teacher was having a really bad day with many kids behaving badly. She had us line up and go to her desk one by one and tell her (quietly) if there was something upsetting us that day. I don't know what the other kids told her but I told her that my mom had shouted at me that morning "No one will ever love you!" Knowing my classmates and the area we were living in I'm sure she heard some sad stuff. She went on stress leave shortly thereafter.
Edit: Thank you for the kind comments. Yes, life got much better for me as an adult. I'm happily married now with three kids who get to worry about regular kid problems instead of dealing with verbal and physical abuse at home like I did and my mom did and probably her parents did.
Student: I want to play with my friend today, but her dad died, so she can't come over.
Me: oh no, I'm so sorry to hear that.
Student: yeah, my mom said God is punishing her.
I explained that "God" does not punish people like that and it is NOT her friend's fault that her dad passed away.
"Student of mine drops out..."
Other moments in my career that have touched me:
- Student of mine drops out to get a job, happens quite a bit because of the economy where we live. Student in question is couch hopping and trying to support himself and can no longer afford to not work, so I don't see him for 6 months. On his 19th birthday, he had the day off and you know what he did? He came to school to visit me, because he knew I would be happy to see him and he would get at least one happy birthday from someone who cares about him.
- Any time a student says anything like "You're the only one who cares about me." "You're the reason I come to school." "You're the reason I graduated." Etc. Kills me every time. Anyone can graduate high school but they lack the confidence in themselves to see it. I try so hard EVERY day to let them know they can do it, but they go home and get the opposite from their parents.
Some days I might be the only positive interaction a student has. I always say good morning when they come in and good bye when they leave, so they know they're being noticed. I try to always use their names when greeting them so they know it's specifically for them. I try to remember important dates for them, birthdays/court dates/if they're going to their driving test that day and congratulate them personally or ask how it went. I want them to know they're seen and someone cares.
"There was a student..."
There was a student who constantly said some pretty sad stuff like "my mommy doesn't like me", "I'm not getting presents for Christmas", "my mommy hit my daddy last night".
Turns out her mother was abusive to her (and her husband) and refused to even touch her. (Plus a lot of other terrible stuff) Her parents have split and she is now in a safe home where she is loved. She was only 4 at the time.
"When I was..."
When I was in training I worked in an inner city school, we were discussing what they wanted to be when they grow up and one 8 year old said, "It doesn't matter I'm going to be in a gang and dead before I'm 21."
It's hard when you see it in your own family though. One of my elementary schoolers was casually explaining to me how his brother is in prison for selling drugs because he couldn't afford a good enough lawyer.
"I've only been teaching..."
I've only been teaching for around nine months, but one sticks out.
I do a lot of 1-to-1 work with a reception-aged child (4-5) who has quite severe ADHD and needs constant supervision. I get to take him outside and do gross motor work with him, and I've really took a shine to him.
Broke my heart a couple of weeks ago when he was stopped by the deputy head and told off for running down the corridor. He burst into tears, which is completely unlike him, and said, "I just can't get the naughty out of my brain."
"A skinny nine year old..."Giphy
"I really need to lose some weight.. I'm SO fat!" A skinny nine year old of mine told me this.
"My student told us..."
My student told us that her mom was taken by ambulance to the hospital the night before after she stopped breathing. The other kids pressed her on what happened and she just shrugged and said her mom would be ok. Two days later, I got the word that her mom was brain dead. Her daughter had no idea. That Friday afternoon, I let the kids have an extra recess and watched my student play and laugh with all the other kids in the sun knowing that she might not be happy like that again for a long time.
"Not really something he said..."
Not really something he said, but when I was tutoring a Somali refugee student (he was 15 years old,) the students were told to draw pictures (of their background or life, I think.) He drew pictures of...... houses on fire.
"She never realized..."
Not a teacher but one of my close friends. I've known her since the start of high school. She never realized her home life was as bad as it was. She spoke about her mom neglecting her while the 14 foster cats they could barely afford to feed were spoiled rotten, and how eating the same thing every night - her only meal for the day started to make her nauseous. The real kicker is that her mother got cancer, and as soon as she died, she said "I'm so glad she's dead.
I wish she'd died sooner." Or something along those lines. She was 16 when her mother died, and she's 18 now. She's never going to leave those horrible scars and the things she tells me about are horrifying.
She lives with her dad now and has a proper home, regular good meals, etc. I have no idea how her dad didn't get custody when she was a child. He's an amazing dad to her and would probably do anything to help her more.
"I'm expecting 2 months"
Foster Kid who left my school a few months ago. She has been to countless homes and foster families. Despite us thinking her current one is great, she still expects they will leave.
Growing up in foster care, I never lasted anywhere more than 10 months. My entire childhood, after being taken from my birth dad (who was not abusive in the least, just not great at taking care of a kid), I never had the same family for more than 10 months. Usually much shorter than that.
I still struggle to stay in one place for an extended period. It's like the uneasiness of not moving claws at my insides.
"Can I have a Band Aid?"
I had a 7 year old ask me for a bandaid. When I asked her what was wrong and she pulled up her shirt to reveal a big burn in the middle of her chest.
Mum had put a cigarette out in her "because she was being naughty."
"Don't waste your time with me, I won't be able to learn this, I'm too stupid for this."
A student from 12th grade said this to me while trying to explain him properties of exponents and logarithms.
I could not believe a 17 year old thinks he's a failure so early in life. He had the attitude of someone who just gave up on trying to learn things.
"She was 7."
"I have never [met] my parents."
She was 7.
This will get buried, but just yesterday I asked one of my special needs kids how his 2 dogs, Goofy and Mickey, are doing.
He said, "Mickeys at the pet store."
We had a really bad snow storm on a Wednesday and a Thursday. On Friday, we had classes again, but like half the kids were missing for obvious reasons. During morning circle, we went around the room and talked about what everyone did during the snow days.
One girl said that she'd cried a lot because there wasn't much to do at her dad's, and she was so hungry because there wasn't enough food. We sent her home with as many extra snacks and breakfasts (cereals, bars, etc) as we could fit in her bookbag, but I still went home and cried that night. She was 7.
"I won't be able to turn in my homework today."Giphy
"I won't be able to turn in my homework today."
"My parents got in a really big fight yesterday. Things got crazy so I wasn't able to do my homework. Can you tell the rest of my teachers for me, please?"
"I just want someone to like me."
11 year old autistic kid in special ed that was bullied on the regular. Said to me in private: "I don't know why I act out all the time... I just want someone to like me." To which I answered "Well, I like you, I want to be your friend.". Kid goes: "I really like that you want to be my friend, but I would like a classmate to want to be my friend too..."
Yeah, tears were shed.
"Asked a kid..."
Asked a kid/student of mine what she wanted to be when she grew up. She said she didn't want or need a job, because her mum doesn't have a job and she gets 500 pound a week (welfare). I almost resigned on the spot.
"One day I heard a kid..."
Not a teacher, but have had many a 'leader' role with groups of kids. (Coach, instructor, scouts, etc). I always went out of my way to make sure every thing we did was fun. I'm a giant kid myself. Imagine hockey coaches standing near the bench yelling to the little kids on what to do. I'm the one in a different Disney jersey every time, skating, diving, falling, laughing it up with the kids on the ice.
One day I heard a kid tell my son of the same age "Man I wish my dad was like your dad." You would think I would be happy about it, but no. It hit me hard. His dad was certainly not like me, and this kid had a difficult home life. For him to actually say he wished his dad was like me hurt. It was a double edge sword. Its a moment I'll never forget.
"Mary won't be here today, her mom died last night."
Student: "Mary won't be here today, her mom died last night."
Me: "Wait, didn't her dad pass away a few weeks ago?"
Both parents died suddenly within a few weeks of each other from different medical conditions.
"I teach pretty much exclusively college freshmen..."
I teach pretty much exclusively college freshmen and by that point they all have that fatalistic sense of humor anyway, but it gets real sad when they get to the end of their rope. Nothing specific that I can remember, but a lot of "why did I think I could make it in college" "I'm too stupid for this I should drop out" and they actually mean it. Stuff like that.
Monday however a student asked to talk to me before class and said "I know this paper is important and all and I don't want you to hate me but I couldn't get my paper done..." and I'm used to this sort of thing, I mean, it's just natural, but then he take a deep breath and blurts out "my dad called me last night and told me he was leaving my mom and moving away so he's leaving me too and I just couldn't deal with it, I'm really sorry if you're mad at me." It just hits me hard when they have to deal with more than they should and on top of that they think I've formed a personal opinion of them and that I'm going to think badly of them based on something like this.
"Please don't send me home."
5 year old preschool girl with 103 degree fever, sicker than sick. She BEGS the nurse, "please don't send me home." She was allowed to sleep in the nurse's office until the end of the day.
That was about 2.5 years ago. A few months later she was removed by CPS and has been with a foster family (me) for nearly 2 years now.
"What's the point...?"
I ran holiday science workshops, filled with brainy kids as you'd expect. There was an 11 year old girl who was brilliant at everything, the content was clearly beneath her. Very quiet, respectful, well liked by the other kids. Her parents were moving soon because she received scholarships to a prestigious school. Whenever her dad came to pick her up he was obviously proud, telling me about all her achievements, how she was in advanced classes, just won all these sports awards too, etc. Showed videos and photos of her winning all these soccer games.
They enrolled her younger brother in similar sessions. He gave it a go in the first few but really struggled, always the last to finish and felt his work didn't look as good as the others. Looked embarrassed to ask for help. He screamed at his sister when she tried to fix his circuit. Eventually he just began acting out, putting off the work, challenging me to get a laugh out of the other kids, messing around. After a disastrous month he stopped trying altogether.
He just came in one afternoon and sat there, not doing anything. I tried to engage him in the activity and said if he didn't like what the other kids are doing, we could pick anything else he wanted to do. He said something like, "What's the point. My parents will never love me as much as they love my sister."
"Can we use the student computer?"
I've had a lot but one morning two students came in early to my room and asked if they could use my student computer. I said sure, and figured that they just needed to finish a project and knew I always got to school early.
Turns out their best friend was murdered 2 days before because he wouldn't give his money he earned to someone trying to rob him. His family needed the money to not be homeless, so he died trying to look out for his family (and for like $80 or something).
My students were creating flyers and a gofundme so they could try to help the parents not be homeless, and to afford a funeral.
To make matters worse, the kid was murdered on a Saturday. He was left to bleed out and die, to be found the next morning. Murderer CAME TO MY SCHOOL on Monday as if nothing had happened. Cops pulled him out of the class in the middle of the day once they had figured out it was him.
They Shoot Me Up
I had a student that frequently lingered in my classroom after school. She often looked ill and was always very weird. One day she opened up to me and said that her mother and her live-in boyfriend shot up heroin every night. I told my principal after she spoke to me and she informed that CPS was already involved. A few days later the same girl told me that her mom and boyfriend would shoot her up with heroin and tell her that she couldn't tell anyone they were still doing it because she would get in trouble for doing it too. She asked me to keep it a secret (which I obviously couldn't) because she was worried she'd get arrested for drug use.
She no longer lives at home thankfully.
"One of my students..."
One of my students calls me dad, because his dad is abusive and I am not. Worth noting the student is trans, and that is why his dad abuses him. All I do is respect his pronouns. Also worth noting, I am a woman living in the Deep South, and I still let him call me dad because it makes him happy, even though him calling me something unprofessional/me respecting his pronouns could get me fired. All his lgbtq friends have picked up on it as well. I am considered a "safe teacher". Maybe not as heartwrenching as others, but it breaks my heart.
"My dad told my therapist that he never wanted to have a kid. He didn't even bothered to ask me to leave the room"
Broke my heart.
"One of the items..."
I'm not a teacher, but one drama lesson we started by playing a little game, we were given an object and had to pretend it was something else but that object.
One of the items was a empty cardboard box, and it was passed around the circle as such items like footballs, hats, boxing gloves.. etc etc. But when it got to this one boy, he opened the box, looked inside and said 'this isn't a cardboard box, it's my will to live' and passed it onto the next person with no facial expression whatsoever.
He didn't mean it (hopefully) and laughed afterward, but it sure did result in an awkward silence for a few seconds.
"I eventually asked..."
I work as a guidance counsellor for a high school. I was helping one girl with university applications, and she kept saying "I don't know" whenever I asked her about a certain school, program, etc.
I eventually asked if she had any ideas of where she might like to apply to, and she said "I don't think it matters, I'll be dead before I graduate".
I found out she had been admitted to the hospital days later for a failed suicide attempt. This was a few years ago; she visited me last week to show me her acceptance letter to uni AND her one year clean of self harm token.
Any engaged couple looks forward to the big day when after months of planning, they get to tie the knot and declare their love in front of family and friends.
What could possibly go wrong?
It turns out there are so many variables that can contribute to making the bride and groom's celebration a major matrimonial miss.
Curious to hear examples of weddings gone wrong, Redditor lolf**kno asked:
"Those who have been to a ruined wedding, what happened?"
Dramatic brawls and speeches plagued these weddings.
Catty Attendees And Booze
"Very beautiful wedding in a huge barn at this apple orchard. They must have spent a ton of money on the decorations and catering because it looked like something out of a magazine. The ceremony was great, the flower girl did her thing, the vows got everyone choked up. Everything seemed to be going well. Not even 15 minutes into the reception the mothers of the bride and groom getting into a full out brawl, hair pulling, red wine being thrown. Their sons jump in to defend their honor, chairs start being throw, tables are flipped, parents are grabbing children and running for their lives."
"The bride and groom are horrified and leave immediately and head back their honeymoon suite. My fiancé and I left after this as well but we heard from some other friends that most people ended up staying and getting wasted at the open bar on the bride and groom's dime. Apparently, the fight started because one of the groom's sister complimented the bride's grandmother's dress. The bride's mom thought she was being sarcastic and called her a b*tch, then the drama ensued. Mind you they had all been pregaming the wedding pretty hard."
Playing For The Drunk Uncle
"I played a wedding where as we started playing the set, everyone ran outside and nobody was to be seen for the rest of the night."
"I originally assumed it was because nobody liked us but the bride came in afterwards and said there was a huge fight involving multiple members of both families and everyone basically went home upset, injured or in a police van."
"We couldn't stop playing since we were payed and it was our job, and the only person watching was the drunk uncle dancing on his own asking for requests we didn't know."
Maid Of Honor Speech Goes Off The Rails
"Was a guest of friend of the bride, did not know anyone attending. Very expensive over the top place, several hundred guests of this very Italian wedding. Maid of honor grabs mic at the cocktail hour begins her speech, rambling, drunk. Quickly devolves to stating the recently deceased mother of the bride was against this wedding and that's basically what killed her. Plus Vinny will never give up sex workers. She is tackled by several people and dragged away."
"The happy couple is separated and divorced within a year."
This is what happens when bad luck crashes weddings.
Tumbling Into The Sunset
"I work at a golf course with a lot of history behind it. We do wedding venues inside the clubhouse and the actual ceremony is held outside by the historic water fountain and large pond."
"First problem was the weather. I live in the high desert and it was very warm. A solid 90 degrees that day and it was also pretty windy. So everyone's outside, no umbrellas, no ezups."
"The next problem, and probably the worst, was the golf cart incident. The bride and groom wanted to 'ride into the sunset' on one of our golf carts. Drive around a little bit on the golf course. To be fair, it is beautiful on the course during sunset. However the cart had somehow gotten a nail in the tire, tire went flat, battery on the cart went crazy and the cart ended up freaking out. It came to an complete stop from 15mph to zero. The wheels and mechanisms locked up, almost seizing. Both the bride and groom (fairly overweight mind you) both fell out and rolled over a few times. They were totally okay, just a few bruises and perhaps a bruised ego or two. So retrieving that cart was fun."
"And last but not least, the power inside the clubhouse went out to do the high winds. There was no after party available. Only the cake was cut, hardly any food was given out. Yeah, not a great day to cover for someone on your day off."
"I was not born yet, but my parents rented the observation deck on the Hancock building in Boston for their reception. Tallest building in the city, beautiful view. My dad pored over historic weather charts to figure out what day was statistically most likely to be nice out. Day of the wedding comes and of course, thick fog unlike anything they'd ever seen before. Couldn't see a thing out the windows of the room they had picked specifically for the view."
"Worked out well though, they were happily married for nearly 30 years before cancer took my dad's life a few years ago."
"There's one other funny anecdote from that wedding: The wedding was held in Kings Chapel, which is an incredibly historic church here in downtown Boston that's somewhat of a major tourist attraction. To close that on a weekend afternoon for a wedding, it turns out, was not very expensive. The tourists waiting outside to see the church didn't know that, though, and someone started the rumor that my parents were incredibly wealthy, maybe even Kennedys. As a result, there were tons of people taking photos of them when they left the ceremony. Not sure if any of them ever figured out that my parents were most certainly not rich or famous."
"I was best man at my sister in laws wedding (stepped in for the brother of the groom, that's another story entirely)."
"For a whole year of planning all the bride (SIL) wanted was a dove release while they said handwritten vows to each other. Very small, non denominational (most of the family are atheist anyway) wedding."
"Day arrives (early summer) and something is off with the bird handlers. They show up a bit late and are sourcing help from the wedding party to get everything in line. When the time comes to say their vows I help the handler carry the chest with the doves in it over to what is to be the altar where the bride and groom are standing."
"Vows are just about wrapping up and the handler gives ME the signal to open the chest. I open it and see 20-30 DEAD DOVES IN THE CRATE!!!! I immediately close it to try and limit who knows what happened. Too late. The look of horror on the bride's was all that was needed. We spent the next few hours trying to cheer everyone up but by the end of the reception the entire wedding party had organized and filed animal cruelty complaints on the handler. It was all anyone could focus on."
Tragic losses unfortunately befell leading up to or at a couple's nuptials.
The Wedding Guest Who Left Too Soon
"When I was 6 or 7 I went to a cousin's wedding. Everything was fabulous for little me, so much sugar everywhere, basically heaven. The reception was in a big community center that was reserved for the occasion. Went to the girls' bathroom, passing by the men's room to see my uncle on the floor. Went back to the main room to tell my dad my uncle was looking weird. Well, uncle had a stroke and had died."
"The bride spent the rest of the afternoon crying, and everyone except close family left."
"Bright side is the mariage is still going strong 20 years later, despite what happened that day."
A Terminal Diagnosis
"Leading up to my friends wedding his father had been battling cancer after a terminal diagnosis. And it was touch and go whether he would be well enough to attend the wedding, in the end he was too unwell to attend despite wishing that he could."
"Just as we got to the wedding reception my friend was informed that his father had just passed away. It was devastating."
"Happened to my classmate. He is successful middle level manager, divorced, about 35yo or so. Found a girl of his dreams but from a provincial poor town. The girl insisted to have the wedding in her town to show off her 'success.' The wedding is crashed by her old friends including male friends who are not that sophisticated and have some tense feelings towards the successful groom from the city. Somebody starts a fight in the middle of wedding, groom is trying to stop it and got stabbed in the back. Died right there. And he was my classmate."
An Unfortunate Trespassing
"The wedding was at a state park that's famous for its giant gorge/waterfall. I don't know whose idea this was, but someone suggested a photo overlooking this gorge and everybody was game. The wedding party went around a stone security barrier and the maid of honor literally fell off the cliff to her death. It was like 500+ feet."
With a lot riding on a wedding to go off without a hitch, the mounting pressure is one where something is surely to buckle.
And because wedding guests are usually inebriated and high on the buzz of celebration, they throw caution to the wind and make some choices they wouldn't make under normal circumstances.
People's ill-advised actions can have regretful consequences, but no one expects death to be an outcome.
Fortunately, the weddings I've attended or heard about from friends were not as catastrophic as the anecdotes mentioned above.
While the Redditors' stories are sorrowful, it gives me a sense of relief these devastating examples are rare occurrences.
Sometimes I think back to a teacher I had when I was a kid who demanded to know whether any of us were "raised in a barn" in response to crappy behavior. Namely littering. She hated littering. Can you blame her? It's a horrible habit and some people do it with no sense of shame. She dedicated much of her time to telling students to pick up after themselves and dispose of things properly. For that, I'm thankful.
But why didn't anyone else get the memo? The trash I see on the streets is obscene.
People had lots of thoughts to share after Redditor SneakyStriedker876 asked the online community,
"What seemingly uncivilized thing is commonplace in society?"
"We delight in the deaths of others as long as we feel it was justified. But when the reverse happens we act all high and mighty like we wouldn't engage in the same behavior."
"Slaughtering each other..."
"Slaughtering each other via warfare to solve political differences. It's standard policy worldwide."
Indeed it is. And it seems impossible to stop.
"Littering. Especially dropping cigarette butts on the ground/flicking them out the window.
The world is not your personal ashtray/garbage bin."
Every now and then I find new trash in my yard and I am constantly amazed by how nasty people can be.
"Mobbing someone because of their opinion or for a comment they made a long time ago, even if that time was yesterday."
"Xenophobia. The fact that racism and racial violence still exist is an indicator that we're still tribal primates in fancy clothes."
And it makes no sense! It's not based in reality. We are truly a tribal species.
"Shouting while arguing, refusing to listen to the opinions of others, basically the inability to debate and maintain proper communication."
"Letting people die..."
"Letting people die of curable conditions simply because they can't afford healthcare."
Probably the biggest reason why much of the Western world looks at the United States with shame in their eyes.
"Parents forcing their kids to hug family/friends despite the kid being uncomfortable doing it. They feel uncomfortable for a reason."
"During the holiday season..."
"During the holiday season, customers take products off of our online fulfillment carts. Y'all have legs. Get your own."
"Using phone speakers..."
"Using phone speakers in public. I don't care what you and your friend think about that restaurant, or how much that Spotify jam speaks to you. Nobody else wants to hear it."
We truly need to stop all of these, don't you think?
Have some opinions of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
I love presents. I try to hide my enthusiasm, and I do my best to appease the greater public by saying "it's the thought that counts." But that is a WHOLE lie. I don't just love gifts, I love great gifts. And if you go rogue from my lists, please keep a receipt. It's just plain rude to divert from what the recipient has requested.
This thought process has emerged from experience. I have received some trash presents over the years and now I'm too old to pretend you just went crazy while shopping. Like... "do you even know me?!"
Redditor u/sulemannkhann wanted to hear all about the presents some of us have received that we prayed, came with a receipt, by asking:
What's the worst birthday gift you ever got?
Have we met? That is an actual question I asked a gift giver once. (Who shall rename nameless) Football tickets. FOOTBALL TICKETS?! Who? What? I can't.
Looks FamiliarBroad City Wow GIF by Comedy CentralGiphy
"My own scarf. Yes, that's right, my mother went into my room took my only scarf, wrapped it and gave it to me like it was a new scarf."
"Thought I was getting a bike for my 15th birthday but my foster parents announced that they were sending me to a group home after living with them for 11 years. Devastation! That place was a wake up call. More independence then at my foster home but those kids had it really really bad, 12 year old heroine addicts, abuse... what the entire hell! I hurried up, graduated from high school at 16 and got the hell out of that place. I turned out ok, work in the legal field, live in Las Vegas. I did forgive my foster parents before they died."
The Forgotten One
"My brother and I worked for a farmer one summer, and he paid us with a used car. At the end of the next year, my brother graduated high school, so my parents paid me out for my half of the car, and that was his graduation gift. I gave them all a big discount compared to what it was worth. So like $500 for my share of a $2500 car."
"2 years later, and I needed $50 for some graduation fees, so I borrowed it from my mom until I could get to the bank. (Before mobile banking and ATMs everywhere.) Later, when my mom is telling me they invited all their friends over for a 'graduation' party, I asked if they had gotten a gift for me. "Well I gave you fifty bucks."
"I paid it back the next day, and she didn't blink. The 'graduation party' was just my parents friends, who said congratulations to me, but it wasn't really for me. A few years later, my little sister graduated, she got a car. They bought a used car for her, and our other little sister got the same when she graduated. My parents are mostly nice, and I never felt like they singled me out at birthdays or anything. Just my graduation seemed like I turned invisible."
Office Party Fail
"HR complaint from two subordinates fighting over how to throw me a surprise birthday party."
"I've never worked in an office environment, but the stories I've heard of people being required to buy a cake for the whole office and to celebrate their birthday with their coworkers would be enough to keep me in blue collar work for life, were it not for the fact that I love being active and working with my hands and could never sit at a desk all day anyway."
Basicslaw school finals GIFGiphy
"My Asian mom's gift was "no extra Kumon homework after school homework" so my birthday gift was that I didn't get extra homework from her."
Regifting is trash behavior. Do better. I'd rather you just say I forgot. Or... I just don't care for that much. But regifting? No.
"Stomach flu and my first ever period, at the same time. I think it was my 13th birthday."
"Omg, exact same story for me. It was my 13th birthday and my family took us kids to visit our relatives in Subsaharan Africa for the first time. I was sick, jetlagged, overheated and riding down a bumpy road in a Jeep driven by my dad in the complete darkness. We had just eaten at a restaurant where I found a giant scarab beetle in the bottom of my soup bowl. I have flashbacks to this day."
"My grandparents have been gifting me (and my brother) the same set of three vice grips for almost 10 years. Collectively we have 60 vice grips. I don't know if they bought a pallet of them, or where they are coming from. GET A GRIP GRANDMA!"
"I had a friend who's father was famous for doing Christmas shopping at the last minute. One year she complained that she went downstairs on Christmas morning and found, sticking out of her stocking, a spatula. Her birthday was a few days after telling that story, so myself and her friends all decided to get together and get her spatulas for her birthday, as a gag gift."
"Well, when it was our birthdays she retaliated. Which lead to a counter-offensive. And soon a new tradition was formed. And guys, I have so many spatulas now. Everything from dollar store cheap plastic, to hand-carved spatulas, a golden spatula, and even a replica of the famous Malaysian fighting spatula."
"I've got seasonal spatulas. As in, today it's time to pack away the Christmas spatulas and bring out the heart-shaped Valentine's day ones, followed by the bunny-shaped Easter ones. We've also been passing around this clip from the Weird Al Yankovic movie UHF. "Spatula City, we sell spatulas, and that's all!"
Their ultimate whack-a-doo move...
"A pair of homemade custom pajamas. Only problem was that they weren't made yet. It was just the fabric and a promise to make them for me. I had to give the fabric back and I never got the pajamas."
"Nothing legal just at our wedding they gave us a card that basically said 'have some land.' When the dust settled I asked what they thought we would do with it, they said build a home. I said ok, gonna need legal ownership for like building a house. They said sure we will get right on that. Then they decide to sell out and retire and never mentioned our wedding 'gift' again."
Gross...Disgusted Steve Carell GIFGiphy
"My grandma got me a hairbrush with a plastic horse head handle. The horse head was all chipped up and there was hair in the brush."
"My Godfather sent me a Birthday card each year which said, he paid 100 bucks to a bank account which I was supposed to get, when 16yo. He then got into alcohol, used all the money and died."
Oh for God sake, why even bother giving anything at all? Lint rollers, used brushes, homemade pjs... y'all ever hear of a gift card? Just put five bucks on it and call it a day. You can't hide cheap, so stop trying.
I'm still on the fence about this whole extraterrestrial situation. I need more proof. Now I'm not naive enough to think that in this vast, endless universe only the human race exists. I just need proof, tangible, solid, didn't see it from my trailer through beer goggles proof.
I also need proof about the afterlife, another out there topic. Truth be told, I've never been that into this whole conversation. I've got enough daily problems on this planet, let alone worrying about making Will Smith's biggest hits into documentaries and not just popcorn/comedy space farce.
But let's compare thoughts...
Redditor u/ValencikHannibal197 wanted to discuss life beyond this planet, what do we really think? They asked:
What's the best theory on UFOs or aliens you've ever heard??
I definitely wouldn't turn down an excursion to AREA 51. I'd like to poke around and get a sense of the place. I've never personally been up close and face to face with a "non-Earther." Not sure I'd like to be...
TV Truthx files monkey pee GIF by The X-FilesGiphy
"UFOs/Aliens are a cover for all of the secret projects that the government is working on. Actually stole that from the X files."
"How human birth parallels alien abductions:
- Babies are taken from their home (womb)
- They still developing sight, so they see bright lights and grey figures.
- They hear an "alien" language they don't understand.
- They suddenly feel cold after leaving their womb.
- They are in a surgery room being poked with tons of instruments.
Long story short: some people suggest that abductions are just people who had memories of their birth."
In the Mind
"I just don't think anyone will ever see this. But I think that UFO's are the projection of our unconscious collective mind. Everything that exists in reality, also exists, in our immaterial mind. Is it possible that the insides of our mind are also just one drop in the ocean of consciousness... and together we create the material reality were in, simply by experiencing it in a real way, inside-out through our senses."
"My father was an aircraft mechanic and fabricator for test and spy aircraft for the USAF. He spent 75-85 working with test aircraft. He said that when they were going to do a test, that could possibly be seen by the public, they would make a betting pool on how many UFO reports local authorities and flight towers received."
Under the Seasci-fi ufo GIFGiphy
"I like the idea that some UFOs aren't machines. Instead they are some sort of Upper-Atmosphere Jellyfish. I found the issue of Fortean Times that had this article. Here's the cover: http://ft.gjovaag.com/q/images/a/ae/FT291.jpg"
Interesting. There are some ideas we can look into. None of it proof, but possibilities. There are certainly plenty of future film ideas.
"We are like that un contacted tribe and everyone agrees not to bother us."
"I've heard it explained from a channel (idk if you know what channeling is) kinda like this. First of all, we as a species tend to freak out, shoot first and ask questions later. Most humans would have a literal psychotic break. You have to believe in vibrational energy as it relates to our consciousness."
"The aliens (certain ones) are at such a higher level that it would be jarring for us to come in close contact with. We are slowly getting there but it's a process. Like 2012, end of the Mayan calendar, wasn't the end of the world it was the end of an energy cycle that we as the human race had never made it past before."
"Previous civilizations have been destroyed or destroyed themselves before they got this far. We passed a point where we are very unlike to destroy ourselves anymore. This doesn't mean we won't see some real bad hardships yet but we will keep progressing."
"train your eyes"Dancing GIFGiphy
"I was a firm believer in t em when I was in high school and kept googling theories and info in my spare time and during my study halls. They said their bodies were so lightweight or something that the reason why you can't see the evidence is that they disintegrate before hitting the ground."
"And then LOL it was so funny, some people would swear you could "train your eyes" to see rods... HhhahAHAHAHA. Like there were these experts. Video showed him walking around with a serious face, then pointing. And he's like, "that was one just there." "You can't see them, you have to be used to them... like me."
"I've spent many years immersed into hunting them finding them. That's why I can see them." And then one day China, who loves occult stuff, had like a lab that set up a nighttime camera to capture footage of rods at night... then realized they were normal bugs at overexposure. lol"
"The Dark Forest theory. Basically the theory that the reason we haven't made contact is because all the other civilized life in the universe/galaxy knows not to broadcast their location. They've learned that there's something awful or predatory lurking in the dark forest of our galaxy, and that it's better if they keep to themselves."
"That the universe is so vast that we haven't been discovered yet."
"This makes sense to me because traversing the distance to or from even our our stellar neighbors would require technology that is not known to us now or likely to be known by us anytime soon if it's even possible at all. To assume without evidence that aliens could possess this technology and have visited us does not meet my skeptical standards."
Back and Forthback to the future great scott GIFGiphy
"Time travel exists, and UFO sightings are actually future humans coming back to our time. That is why they are so discreet, and never openly make contact."
I hope time travel exists. Now that I'm onboard for. If aliens do exist... just come on out guys. We could probably use your help.