Teachers Share The Worst Parent Experiences They've Ever Had
Parents can be a nightmare for teachers, especially when they feel the need to micromanage their child's education. Those that go to the opposite extreme of just not caring aren't any better, though.
A nice balance of letting the child learn to operate independently and caring enough to keep them safe may seem like an unattainable goal after reading some of these parent-teacher nightmares!
Reddit user murdocnickles asked:
You Really Should Care
My mother had been terminally ill for two years. She had a heart attack and went into a coma. I lived 500 miles away, so I packed up and hurried through the long journey to make sure I got there before she died.
Unbelievably, she hung on for another four days, so I was gone for two full school weeks. I did all of my sub plans electronically, and I had an assignment for each day, to be turned in by the end of the day.
I had one child, with an IEP, who did jack crap the entire year. Well, you can imagine what he did while I was gone. If you can do less than jack crap, he did less than jack crap.
His mother called to speak with me after she saw that he had zeros for the assignments that were due while I was gone. I gently explained the reason for my absence, that my mother had died, and that I was not in the classroom to monitor his instruction.
Mother proceeds to rage on me. She tells me "I don't care if your mother died or not, my boy does not deserve zeros "
Hockey Is A Dangerous Sport
Had a parent accuse me of hitting her child and bruising him. Was called into the admin's office and asked what happened. I explained that the incident the parent is referencing where she thinks he was hit happened in a different room, across the building nowhere near me. It was so clear cut untrue I wasn't even asked a followup question. They just said "Oh that's true, you can leave." Understand as a teacher being accused of striking a child you are almost always dismissed on leave while they look into it unless the claim is just flat out unbelievable. That's how clear it was I did nothing.
So she continues claiming I hit the child and saying she's gonna get a lawyer and sue unless I am fired at once. The school stands their ground saying they know for a fact I did nothing and will not fire me for no reason. We later find out her child did in fact have a bruise on his arm. He ALSO had a hockey game that same night before he went home. Just guess how he got that bruise. The school even pointed that out and still she continued to say I did it and she would sue.
My principal calls me into her office and explains that the parent is still accusing me, they know I did nothing and not to worry as they were going to get their lawyers on it. This whole process took months and only ended when the school's lawyers contacted her and essentially said bring us to court if you want to waste your money.
At Least Most Of Them Aren't This Bad
Parent teacher conference: Father pulls out his phone and looks at it the entire 25 minutes. Could visibly see the kid deflate as his father found his phone more important than his son. I felt awful, and got a new understanding for the boy's bad behavior in class.
Second parent teacher conference: Mom fuming with anger and screams at, and belittles daughter for 25 minutes straight. Daughter is crying all the time and is completely annihilated. The daughter's crime? She had done a crossword in class when I asked her to read instead, she generally acted like a normal kid.
No funny stories here. Over all though, I've had a lot of really supportive and reasonable parents.
Edit: I have gotten a lot of questions about the crossword thing, you can tlread the thread for elaboration.
I'd say what my real failure in this situation was not mentioning the crossword, but not standing up to the mother and just declaring "enough".
I failed the daughter in that moment not because I mentioned the crossword, but because I as an adult did not stand up for her when she was being torn apart by her mother. To be honest, I didn't know what to say or do, so I just froze and waited it out. I have thought a lot about this incident after it happened, and hope I have the skills and guts to handle it differently if something like this happens again.
Definitely Know Where He Gets It
I have a student who does f*ck all and laughs at me when I try to talk to him about it. Parents wouldn't answer phone calls so I made sure to talk to the dad at parents evening (had 120 kids to see in 2.5hrs so cannot always see everyone). When I talk to his dad what does he do? Snigger at me like his son does and says nothing else! At least I know where he gets it from!
Paper Trail To The Rescue
My school had a policy all tests under 70% needed to be signed by a parent and returned to the teacher within 3 days. Parent and student didn't comply. I called, e mailed, and sent notes. No response. Finally progress reports go out and the next day mom finds me greeting students at the door. She decides this is the perfect time to rip into me and let me know how I've failed her student.
She did this all while I had a class full of students. When I finally got a word in I said this wasn't the tine for us to discuss her daughter's private information especially in front of all her classmates and I would love for to email me some times she was available to meet and shut the door.
She then went down to the admin office and unleashed on the principal. I was pulled from my class to come to the "meeting." I was verbally assaulted for about 2 minutes while my principal sat quietly watching and typing while she pulled up all my e-mails to the parent and checked my communication log (online spreadsheet we kept on the server outlining all communication that was phone call or notes).
The principal found no fault with me asked the parent if she was going to keep her daughter enrolled at our school, a private Catholic school, and then had parent go over and resign parent code of ethics contract. I went back to my classroom quite triumphantly. Parent ending pulling kid over Christmas break to a school that fit their needs more.
"Just Try Harder"
A mom asked me why her son who is absent from my class 19/20 schools days every month was failing my class. I said he needed to come to school in order to pass the class, and she insisted that I was responsible for his failing & that I needed to try harder to teach him when he was there.
I wrote a different kid up for skipping my class (he was with another teacher & lied that he had my permission) & he got 4 days of ISS (not in my control to assign punishments) & the mom emailed & insisted: a) her child "did nothing wrong" bc he was still on school grounds and b) that I was "out to get him"
I am an organic chemistry professor at a college. I had to inform a mother that I can not discuss her son's grades with her but that she should speak to her son if she had any concerns. The student in question showed up to very few classes and didn't have enough lab hours to sit for the final.
I Don't Think Any Class Can Prepare You For That
A parent told myself and my coworkers that she didn't believe black people could properly raise children.
All my coworkers in this meeting were black, and mothers.
It was my first year of teaching, and my bougie private college education courses never covered "dealing with racists," so I just slid under the table as far as I could until the meeting was ended by a coworker.
BONUS STORY: I had an 8th grade student with a GPS ankle bracelet to match his difficult behavior. When mom came into the meeting, she was so high she started making up Bible verses.
Practice Makes Perfect
I'm a private teacher, I teach English and French. Dad brings his kid for the first time, boss introduces me as the teacher. Dad looks sceptical, (I should add that I'm 22) proceeds to ask me how I am qualified to work there, in a very offensive way. I told him that I finished at the best university in my country and I had a degree in French and English studies. Then he started kind of compensating by saying 'Well, I too have a language exam ya know.'
Few months pass by, the little girl is very sweet and she's smart but it's obvious that her parents don't care to make her learn the words or help her practice, and I can't work wonders only an hour once a week. So dad comes in furiously because his daughter got a C at the end of the term, and basically says that his kid is not stupid enough to only achieve a C (true, btw), so therefore I'm the one who's not qualified to teach and he doubts if I can even speak English properly. I explained to him that first of all maybe if I couldn't speak English, I wouldn't be working as an English teacher, and second of all, all the kid needed was 30 minutes of practice every day which they as parents were responsible for. Needless to say, I don't teach that girl anymore.
It's All Your Fault
I had a mom in the front office, demanding to see me. She wanted to fight me because I refused to tie her son's shoe. He was in 8th grade and not in special ed.
Seen Some Things In 13 Years
This is my 13th year teaching, and I've had some doozies. I think this one takes the cake though:
I had a parent go through the phone book and start calling all of the people with MY LAST NAME because she was upset that her child *may* need to be retained for first grade. The only reason I knew about this, is that she reached my parents, who refused to give her my phone number. (And then who called me in a panic about this crazy parent trying to find me).
Not A Great Example
The classic loud custody arguements at dropoff, in front of the whole class (and the mortified child). Just super icky and trashy.
There was also the one who never picked them up and expected them to walk home in -40C "to teach them independence". She was just sleeping at all hours as a result of depression. I hate to say that was "the worst" because it was a mental health illness that was obviously reported ASAP.
Only So Many Chances
I'm a professor at a university. Several years ago I was teaching an online class during the summer break. As you may guess, these tend to be rather intensive and require not only a great deal of time but the ability to work independently and be self-motivated. Since I'm not physically present to remind students to do their work, if you have a tendency to slack then it's pretty easy to fall very, very far behind quickly.
One of my students somehow missed the first two weeks of the four week course, despite multiple reminders and constant check-ins. It was a bit surprising, since the student was not attending my school but taking the course as a transfer credit (the student's home university did not have a course in my field so he had to arrange months beforehand, with my help, to have the credits approved). In the end, it turned out the student had lost the password for the website and hadn't wanted to contact IT by phone or by live chat to have it reset. However, the IT department couldn't really reset the password by email so the student apparently had their father do the phone call. This should have been a warning of things to come.
Now, I get it. My students are often young and inexperienced and can make frankly ludicrous decisions. I'm pretty forgiving, so I arranged with him a revised schedule to make-up the missing work. I also gave him a few other options, so he could fairly make-up the missed points if the revised schedule was too onerous. I do this regularly for all my students, I want them to do well and I want to be fair. As long as you do the work you get a fair grade. I kept in touch with the student regularly and reminded them of the revised schedule, the other options available, and, of course, what would happen if the work wasn't completed.
Guess what. The make-up work wasn't completed and the student failed. It was a shame, because the student had otherwise good marks in the around 35-40% of the work that was completed. The student, who had stopped responding to my messages during the last week of classes, suddenly bombarded me with emails in a panic. It turns out they would not be able to graduate without the credits and could I give them another chance?
Nope. I told the student they had their chance and if they thought I was being unfair they could bring it up with the head of the department with a grade appeal.
The next day I got an odd message. The student had given my email to their parents and now I was receiving constant emails from a person who no doubt is the bane of every poor customer service representative on the planet. She raged that I was a monster to fail her little baby. Didn't I know how hard he worked, on his summer break no less. He really wanted to graduate with his friends this term and his life would be ruined if he didn't walk with them. A real professor would have ensured the work was done. I was a incompetent fool to not recognize her child's genius and I should grade her child on the work completed and not factor in the missing work. My course was a joke, an easy A, and I should be thankful her child deigned to join in because I clearly didn't get students like her child ever before.
I didn't respond, since that would violate the student's right to privacy. I did notify the student that someone claiming to be their parent was sending me inappropriate emails. The student responded that their mother had a point and would be conducting negotiations on their behalf from now on. Knowing that neither seemed particularly capable at this point, I told the student that there were forms that needed to be filled out before I could even acknowledge they had taken my class. However, I didn't provide links to these forms because clearly basic computing was beyond the student and their parent.
So, I continued to ignore the raging parent. Who started to try to play on my sympathies. Her child was disabled, didn't I understand how hard life was for a person with autism? Fun fact. I got the autism and a Ph. D. So when the student followed-up, asking if I what I heard changed my mind I brought up how the Disability Resource Center could provide aid in the future, since they had been such a help to little ol' autistic me. This, oddly, got them off my back. Sort of. The student appealed all the way to the top, lying on the appeal forms in a way that was easily disprovable because my little autistic mind knows to keep records and messages of all my students. I could also demonstrate how many chances the student had and how other students who had fallen behind had been able to catch up with these allowances. The appeal failed and somewhere out there my student and their mommy and daddy are probably still co-depending away with a big old F on their records.
Let Them Be Adults
I work in Student Services at a pretty big University, we legally aren't allowed to release information about our (adult) students to anyone except them without their written consent to do so. We get SO many helicopter parents calling up either on behalf of or without their childs knowledge.
I think the worst I've ever encountered was a woman who had called regarding her son. We told her that we can't tell her anything without his consent, so she said she'd get him to contact us. We get an email from not his student email address, feels a bit iffy so we probe a bit and ask them to confirm some things that only he would know regarding his studies. Turns out she had made a fake email account to get permission.
She then called multiple times in a row trying to get different operators to get a different answer, she had a friend call on her behalf and also had friends come in (she lived in a different country) and talk to us on her behalf. We could not tell her anything.
Eventually, we spoke to the student about it and he sort of knew it was happening but didn't know the extent. He gave us permission to talk to her regarding his finances and student Visa conditions, but we aren't allowed to discuss grades or enrollments. She did not enjoy being told that, to say the least.
Honestly, if your kid has made it to University cut the strings.
Still Have To Do The Work
7th grade science here. Right before winter break the 7th grade team is informed we will get a new student, totally fine. It's the school nurse's kid. She has a 504 plan with the normal routine accommodations but includes one where she is allowed to wear hats/headwear in the classroom. As far as accommodations go, this isn't that bizzare.
Fastforward to the week we are back from winter break. I introduce her to the room and move on with the lesson. She reports to mom that I paraded her around the room and embarassed her. I receive a LONG email from her and i get to have a little meeting with the principal about the incident. Students in the room were asked to write statements and everything. I was mortified and furious. Thankfully nothing came of it as my students told the truth and that was that.
During the next two months she turns in wildly incomplete, blank, or otherwise subpar work. She would claim to not understand how to turn in the work. But the whole school turns in digital work the same way and there are no problems in her other classes woth this.
As that is going on the weekly emails began. Which became daily emails. Every day a long ramble of an email from the mother saying I am not following the accommodations her daughter needs, that I am not being nice to her. Eventually the guidance counselor and assistant principal take turns sitting in my room during that class for a week to observe. Still, the emails come. Some demanding a one on one meeting and all i can think is HELL NO!
We offer a parent teacher conference with all of her teachers but she refuses. Eventually she gets her wish though by formally accusing me of not following the 504 accommodations plan, which is pretty serious if that was the case.
At the meeting a provide all the evidence I had logged, which is what I did for all students that needed accommodations and what does this parent do? She starts sobbing! Y'all, i was so done with her at this point amd thankfully thats where it all ended. The daughter was eventually put into an online class and spent the time she would have been with me in the library. That mom was straight up crazy.
Medications Are Prescribed For A Reason
This one kindergartener started having pretty severe behavior problems halfway through the school year. His parents had decided that he was magically cured of all his problems and pulled him off all of his behavior medications.
He would hit and spit on other kids, run out of the building, chuck chairs in the classroom, and chuck his lunch everywhere. His mother's solution to all of this: give him a box of granola bars. She tried to say he was just hangry and wanted me to treat train him to misbehave.
Last I heard, he got so bad he actually had to be sent to another school to be in a behavior-focused classroom. The granola bars did nothing.
Get Out While You Can
Last schoolyear(2017-2018), I temporarily taught Jr. High at a Catholic school which I was essentially forced to "resign" from(I had a psychotic principal, and it's a very long story).
Anyway, aside from the principal, most of the parents were crazy helicopter parents who thought there was nothing wrong with their kids at all. With this being said, there was a husband, and wife couple who made my life a living hell(and probably cost me my job).
Their daughter was a Straight A student, and very well-behaved, but she would go home, and tell her parents that my teaching was "ineffective", and wouldn't prepare her for high school(it was my first official year as a teacher too). Anyway, I guess the parents were secretly emailing the principal bold-faced lies about me. Some of the claims were I would "play on the computer" during class, or I would purposely let students argue with each other to get a "rise", and other completely bizarre lies. They did this to get me fired.
My principal told me she didn't necessarily believe them, but since they were the "backbone" of donations for our school(AKA rich parents), she was going to be extremely strict on me, and micromanage every single thing I do with a strict observation which would probably terminate me, or she would give me the option to resign with a severance check(this happened right before our Christmas Break too).
I took the money, and ran.
She Can Barely Speak Korean Yet
I worked at an English kindergarten in Korea for a couple months. One girl was 3 years old and got a 98/100 on her test. I had a mom come in and chew me out. I couldn't understand her. The only English word she kept saying was "WHY." I felt really bad because I couldn't explain myself properly, but hell lady, she's 3 years old. She can barely speak Korean.
Taking Responsibility Is An Important Life Skill
Broadly, the parents who don't believe their children made any mistakes, didn't do their work, or said or did anything bad. Then in turn, blaming me for being a bad teacher while cussing me out.
Not only is this incredibly frustrating and demeaning, but now the kid knows they can not only get away with stuff, but disrespect you in the process since their parents essentially gave permission.
Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'
Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.
Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.
For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.
I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.
My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.
Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.
It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:
"Give an example; how weird are you really?"
Monsters Under My Bed
"My bed doesn't touch any wall."
"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."
"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."
"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"
Can You See Why?
"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."
"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."
"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."
"Makes me think my "memory is full.""
"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."
"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"
Not Sure Who Was Weirder
"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."
"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."
"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."
"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."
"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."
"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."
"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."
My Favorite Subject
"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."
"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."
"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."
"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."
"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."
"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."
"I bite ice cream sometimes."
"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."
Never Speak Of This
"I put ice in my milk."
"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."
"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."
More Than Super Hearing
"I can hear the television while it's on mute."
"What does it say to you, child?"
"I put mustard on my omelettes."
– Deleted User
"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."
"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."
"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."
I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!
Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.
Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?
But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.
It would be so great to be sure there is something else.
But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.
Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:
"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"
SensationsHappy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy
"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."
"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."
"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."
"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."
Take Me Back
"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."
"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."
FreeThe Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy
"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."
This is why I hate surgery.
You just never know.
"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."
"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."
"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”
"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"
"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"
"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."
"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."
Through the Walls
"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."
"She's quite alive and well today."
Well let's all be happy to be alive.
It seems to be all we have.
We all have our favorite foods, food preferences, and even foods that we don't like.
But there are some popular foods out there that just don't make sense. Nonetheless, we keep seeing them advertised, included in movies and TV shows, and of course, our loved ones ordering them while we look on in confusion.
Curious about others' food preferences, Redditor YarnSpectre asked:
"What's one food everyone seems to go crazy for, but you just don't understand the hype?"
So Much Sugar
"Nutella. It’s just okay."
"Way too sweet for me, I’d probably love it with one-fifth of the sugar."
"Unfortunately that's true of a lot of desserts, though. Most would benefit from a cut of at least 25 percent of the sugar."
"Red velvet cake. I've had ones that were supposed to be excellent but it's just red cake."
"Most red velvet cakes are just s**tty vanilla cake with red food coloring. Get one (or make one) the correct way with non-Dutch-processed cocoa powder, buttermilk, and vinegar. It's an incredibly smooth, very different type of chocolate cake."
Mastery Makes a Difference
"Those multicolored cookie things that everyone was making into cakes or something for a while? Macaroons? Macarons? I don't think I've ever had one that tasted good. They're pretty, but that's it."
"Macarons. I never cared for them either."
"I had one yesterday at a potluck, homemade ones. They were seriously something else, with some sort of butter cream and jelly inside. Never had anything quite like it. Now I wish I had grabbed a few to take home."
"I still won't eat store-bought ones, though."
The Wrong Kind of Spice
"Hot Cheetos or Takis. Anything with the artificially colored spicy powder."
"Takis texture is my issue. They’re like semi-stale rolled-up Doritos."
The Sugar Cookies of the Midwest
"Those dry-a** Walmart sugar cookies."
"They taste like play-dough cookies came to life."
"I mean, people go crazy in both directions, but cilantro. There’s the whole 'does it taste like soap or not' thing, but it’s usually presented as 'people either think it tastes like soap or they find it amazing.'"
"I am neither. It doesn’t taste like soap to me, but I also don’t love it. Meh."
"I don't think it tastes like soap, but I do think it tastes weirdly metallic. I don't go out of my way to avoid it in pre-prepared food, but I usually leave it out of things I'm preparing myself."
Fancy Decor Only
"People like how fondant LOOKS. I refuse to believe a single soul wants to EAT it."
"It's like eating a candied raincoat."
Back for a Limited Time
"Every time it comes back, I’m SUPER excited for the McRib at McDonald's. I bite into one and then… the spongey texture hits me and makes me remember why I don’t need to buy it ever again."
"Then, somehow, McRib season rolls around again two years later, and there I am in line…"
"I'm convinced this is why they only bring it out every once in a while. Nobody actually likes it, but they wait just long enough for you to forget that it's no good and then hit you with a combo of nostalgia and 'limited time only' FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)."
A Seasonal Tradition
"Pumpkin spice. It’s fine, but absolutely not anything to make a fuss about."
"There is a car parts place in a small town I drive through to visit family, and last year on their reader board, they had: 'THEYRE BACK! PUMPKIN SPICE BRAKE PADS.'"
"And now I can never see anything pumpkin spice and not think about it, might have been my favorite reader board sign ever."
Pure Caffeine Addiction
"Energy drinks like Red Bull or Monster."
"I'm an avid Monster drinker, but I totally get it. I'm always trying new and interesting energy drinks I see, but so much of it is just garbage."
"The white Monster tastes like 90s Fresca to me and is the only energy drink I love."
"Can it be a beverage? Because I kind of hate IPAs but everyone else seems to love them. And I like beer, just not IPAs."
"I have nothing against people who want complex beers. It's just not for me. I want an easy as f**k to drink fizzy yellow beer for when it's hot out. And a nice smooth stout for all other times. When I want more complex flavors, I'll go for wine or scotch."
Just Too Expensive
"What about lobster? I can dig it with drawn butter and I ain’t mad at it. But f**k me if I’m gonna pay $29.99 for a lobster. I’d rather eat shrimp."
"Truffles. I paid $60 this weekend at an Italian restaurant for eight slivers on my pasta shaved in front of me. I barely tasted anything. I don't get the hype."
Improved Gut Health?
"Ah, yes, dirty pond water."
"Everyone goes crazy for caviar? Most people seem to dislike it."
"Though admittedly, people who do like it tend to like it a lot."
"That all being said, I really don't like it, either."
When it comes to food, to each their own, but it was interesting to see some undeniable fan favorites like pumpkin spice hit this list.
It just serves as a great reminder for a larger picture idea: Don't be unkind about the things that might bring someone else joy.
Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.
The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.
Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.
Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:
"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"
Redditors didn't see these coming.
Shiver Me Timbers
"I’m always cold now!"
"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."
"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."
"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."
"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"
"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."
"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”
"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."
Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight
"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."
"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."
"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."
These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.
"I can buy clothes in any store I want."
"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."
No More Symptoms
"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."
"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."
People Change Their Tune
"How much nicer people are to you."
"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"
"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"
"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"
It's gonna take some getting used to.
"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."
"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."
"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."
"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."
"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."
"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."
People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.
But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.
That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.