Therapists Share The Times They Had To Tell A Client 'No, That's Not Normal'
Therapists don't coddle their clients, contrary to what some people might believe. Therapy works when therapists are able to be 100 percent real with their clients, as we learned when 88mica88 asked: "Doctors/therapist of Reddit, do you have any "no, that's not normal" stories? If so, what abnormal habit/oddity did the patient have thinking it was normal?" Patients also weighed in.
"Woman came to the hospital..."
Woman came to the hospital because she was feeling "tired" and casually mentioned her persistent vaginal bleeding she'd been dealing with for 2 months. She said it wasn't ever a large amount so she didn't think twice about it. Labs were done and her hemoglobin was 3.9. For context, that's low. Like, you should be dying low. But she looked perfectly fine.
"I examined him..."
Guy in his 20s came in complaining of bellybutton problem. I examined him, he had an irritated scab inside the bellybutton caused by aggressive lint picking. But dude was sweaty and had a slight tremor. Looked like crap. When I asked how he was feeling overall he said "Oh ok I guess. Just a little tired, drank a little more this week than usual. Probably overdid it."
I had to pry for details and turns out he drank a gallon of gin over the last 3 days and stopped drinking alcohol when he started vomiting large amounts of blood and pooping a mixture of bright red blood and dark sticky stuff (melena- digested blood).
He was totally unaware of the fact that he was going through alcohol withdrawal (sweating, shaking) because he hadn't stopped drinking long enough in recent memory to experience symptoms. I sent him straight to the emergency room, where they found a tear in his esophagus that required immediate intervention, and he was admitted for inpatient alcohol detox.
I read his hospital note, he still insisted that the ED doc examine his bellybutton.
"I'm a therapist..."
I'm a therapist and a couple came in and were fighting because they didn't want to have sex. I told them they didn't have to, they were fairly confused and thought I was lying to them... Now they have 3 kids.
"In my psych rotation..."
In my psych rotation, me and my fellow students were interviewing this anhedonic patient.
A guy asked him does it feel like nothing matters and that you'd rather die.
I promptly responded of course, but that's just normal. Thinking about death because there's so many bad things in the world that we know for sure are happening but have no actual way of subverting or preventing. (In my mind, scenes of forced prostitution, organ harvesting, domestic abuse, sadistic torture). That just all collectively said, No!! That's not normal. If you're having problems, please tell us more. I just responded, oh. And justified in my head that it's just a lack of proper communication.
"I currently have a patient..."Giphy
I currently have a patient who, for no seemingly good reason, consumes food via their nose. It wasn't so bad when it was a softened diet but the salad was a real shocker.
"It was more like..."
It was more like... I realized what was happening was not normal and it lead to the client being diagnosed with what I can only assume was rapid cycling bipolar II with psychotic features (was referred to a more appropriate agency after initial intake so I didn't do the official diagnosis). He came in and was so down about his life that I called in another therapist to do a suicide assessment together. Once we were going through the questions the client became excited at having an audience and did a 180 in demeanor. I had never experienced someone flip so quickly. Aside from the mental health stuff, the client was a really cool person whom I hoped would get proper medication and go on to live a happier life. Lots of achievable hopes and dreams, and a really intelligent person, delusions aside.
"Turned out that, no..."
I was the patient, but when I went in for a routine physical the doctor poked my extended belly and asked how long it had been like that. I laughed and said, "What? My beer belly? Oh, since I was 21 probably." Turned out that, no, the 'beer belly' was a cyst that had grown really large and that was why my friends kept saying I looked pregnant. I thought I just had really shitty friends. Had to have emergency surgery and for a week or so there did not know if it was a cyst or ovarian cancer. It was a pretty big scare.
"I had no idea it wasn't normal..."
I was the patient.
I had no idea that it wasn't normal to uncontrollably sob for 2 weeks out of every month, have breasts so sore I couldn't go down stairs (jiggle), and then have it all stop the day you start your period. It took me getting a female roommate at 30 for me to realize that wasn't typical. I asked my obgyn after charting my symptoms for 6 months. PMDD, a depressive disorder that is tied to your menstruation.
A change in birth control pills fixed it right up. He also looked at me like I was crazy for thinking that was normal for 16 years. I asked my mom after my diagnosis, "oh yeah. remember in high school? Your friends would come over and ask if you were crazy that day or not?"
No mom. They didn't ask me that. Thanks for letting me know.
"From the other side of the therapy couch..."
From the other side of the therapy couch as a client, I once described a new emotion I was feeling that was really difficult to process. Turns out I was just fully experiencing sadness.
I'd built a defence mechanism where I'd go straight from zero to angry, and whatever was trying to make me sad I'd just get angry about instead. So I'd never really spent time in the sadness area long enough to experience it properly. It usually flicked me straight through to anger at high speed.
I can't imagine what it's like as a therapist to have a 33 year old telling you about this weird new feeling, and you having to explain to them what a normal response sadness is.
"A few years back..."
A few years back my mental health totally took a skydive. As a result I dropped out of school and had to start a recovery program. The first thing I had to do was talk to a psychologist. During these conversations with the psychologist, she'd focus on different parts of my life. So one day she'd ask about relationships and the next, childhood memories and so on. After a few conversations she focused on my social life. I then told her that it's pretty much nonexistent, and it always has been.
She then stated that I must've suffered from loneliness a lot then. I just told her that I've never actually felt lonely at any point in my life. After all it's pretty hard to feel lonely with the 2 voices in your head always keeping conversation. But surely she knew that, right? Well as it turns out, no. Apparently everybody else only have their own voice in their head. My entire life has been a lie. Turns out I'm schizophrenic.
I have seen many a scary movie.
A horror movie done right can haunt you forever.
Have you seen "The Exorcist?"
I don't know if I'm ready for the new sequel.
I love to be a little frightened by a movie.
But haunted for life is a different story.
Plus, I can't sleep with the lights on...
Redditor Specialist-Crazy1466 wanted to hear which movies we still see in our nightmares, so they asked:
"What is the scariest movie you ever watched?"
Some scary movies give me heart palpitations.
So I try to be picky about the stories I watch.
The Balancethe descent horror GIF by Coolidge Corner TheatreGiphy
"The Descent. Horrible monsters mixed with darkness and claustrophobia makes a scary movie."
"I was looking for this movie. Imo this film is the perfect balance between bloody, physical horror and actual psychological terror."
"White Noise. Wasn't scary when I watched it in the theater but became VERY scary when my car stereo only picked up static the whole ride home."
"Oh damn, that was so good. I worked at a video store in ~1996 or so, and a coworker put it on. I was mesmerized. I later took it home and watched it in the dark, as you should, and damn. That's a masterpiece."
"Took my high school girlfriend to it, and she was in tears she was so scared. Almost 20 years later, and she still freaks out if I bring it up."
"The Day After... I watched it when I was a kid and it absolutely terrified me. When it originally aired, ABC had to set up a phone hotline with counselors standing by. It's one of the scariest depictions of nuclear war in film in my opinion. Chilling."
"I've been thinking about these movies, and how unrealistic they are. We all just survived a pandemic. What happened? Things were bad, tent hospital, turned away, truck morgues. And people just... learned to bake bread. Made music."
"Gave up offices and started doing things for their neighbors. Nuclear war would be obviously, a horrific shitshow and not to be entertained, but I really believe, we'd come together and make a good world after. It wouldn't be the complete collapse of our humanity, and the rest can be rebuilt."
"The Grudge. I don't know why, but this f**king thing is so scary. I had to pause it. Never had this before. Even the worst splatter is nothing for me, but this... No."
"It was when the lady got sucked into the bed when she was hiding under the covers. Like they took away my only defense in the dark as a kid."
"I had the same reaction. Something about it just made my skin crawl in a way that other similar movies like The Ring didn't. For several years afterward whenever I had a nightmare, the grudge lady was somehow involved. Yugh."
Turn it OffHappy Got You GIF by BounceGiphy
"There are definitely better movies, but Sinister has always scared the crap out of me. It took me 2 tries to watch it. It’s the only movie I’ve ever turned off from being so scared."
Never saw Sinister.
And now I know to skip it.
My nightmares are bad enough.
"The Thing. My first viewing was at night, and I was maybe 5 or 6. It scared me so bad I only watched subsequent viewings during the day until I matured a little more."
“'The Ring' when I was 9 or 10, that was scary."
"I saw it in my 30s, on pain meds for kidney stones, while my wife and kids were away. The thing that freaked me out the most was that in the middle-end of the film someone called me from an unknown number and hung up."
"It's the only movie I absolutely refuse to watch ever again. I saw it ONCE as a kid and I'm 30 now. I still have occasional nightmares about it. Sometimes I'll be eating and this movie will pop into my head for NO REASON and I lose my appetite completely. I'm haunted by it."
Too Much too Handle
"Event Horizon... or maybe Pandorum."
"Worth noting Event Horizon is one of the most famous cases in the lost media community. It had 30 minute cut for being too grim for the test audiences. 30. Minutes. While some scenes did make their way to the 2006 DVD, most of it is considered most likely lost for good barring some miraculous surprise discovery."
"You can read about what was cut at the Lost Media Wiki here: https://lostmediawiki.com/Event_Horizon_(partially_lost_unreleased_130-minute_cut_of_sci-fi_horror_film;_1997)"
"The Exorcism of Emily Rose. I kept waking up at 3 am on the money for weeks afterward. Didn’t help that I found and listened to the original tape-recorded material of her speaking fluidly in different languages while being exorcised."
"This is it for me. I watched it in theaters when my boyfriend was out of town. I went home and slept with the lights on. I love scary movies and had never done that before or since. I’m going to have to look for those tapes!"
Wobbledkathy bates misery GIFGiphy
"Misery. My knees were wobbling when I walked out of the theatre. No more Stephen King for me."
"I watched that while dealing with a stalker. Horrible choice."
I love scary movies, but some of these sound like a step too far.
Misery still haunts me.
We all want to believe we are perfectly safe, but the fact is, the world can be a scary and dangerous place sometimes.
For the most part, we can protect ourselves, but sometimes we end up in dangerous situations through no fault of own (or anyone else's).
Redditors are no strangers to situations like these. In fact, some of them have been in actual near-death situations, and they are ready to share those stories.
It all started when a Redditorasked:
"When have you ever feared for your life? Why?"
Fight The Ocean
"When I got caught in a riptide while stupidly swimming alone in the ocean."
"My brother saved someone this way, and he never forgot it! He almost drowned too because she was fighting so hard and pulling him under. Another guy had to come help get her out because the current was so strong, but they made it."
"I just started working as an ocular recovery technician and live in a beach town. My first case was a 26 year old man who drowned off the beach. I don’t know if he was a tourist or a local, but as a local I grew up being constantly lectured on water safety and how to get out of a riptide. It broke my heart looking at him in the morgue and thinking about how scary his last moments must have been. Water is not something to play with."
"Ex was driving and a moose walked out in front of the car."
"Moose are no joke. Every person I know who's been in an accident with a moose have their entire care totaled and the moose just walks away like nothing happened."
"Woke up in the throes of a severe asthma attack. Clocked my pulse at 227. As I was digging for my inhaler, I kept thinking what a stupid way to die this would be."
"I’m in the hospital on day 3 with my 10-year-old who is recovering from a severe asthma attack. It’s incredibly scary. The crazy thing is, he has not had any issues with asthma since he was 3. His pediatrician told me he outgrew it (he was born with juvenile asthma). Unfortunately, he did not, as the pulmonologist said it can go dormant, may never reoccur in your life but never truly goes away. My son had the perfect storm of triggers, and here we are. We’ll now have an aggressive asthma attack plan for him but damn this was incredibly scary. Like top ten level fear thinking he could not make it."
She Was Mad!
"Wasn't the only time or most frightening time, but the most memorable was when I was a teenager and got pinned to a wall by an extremely agitated cow. She'd knocked her water bucket apart and I was replacing it and she charged me. I just happened to fit exactly in between the horns. I do mean exactly - I had matching bruises on each side like I'd been hit twice with a length of pipe. She hit hard enough to drive her points a couple inches into the wall and stick. I've been in car accidents, fallen off things, been in fights and even had a young tree fall on me. None of that compares. Felt like being caught by a huge wave."
"Anyway I bonked her as hard as I could on the forehead and bolted out the door when she pulled her head back. The whole thing took maybe two seconds tops. Best part? My parents were right outside, they thought I'd just been killed. The wall was solid for the first 4ft, then 2in gaps between 2x8 boards for the rest. They saw the whole thing but couldn't see me below my shoulders - just the charge, the catch, and the wall crack from the impact and the horns pushing through."
"7.2 Earthquake in Japan made the apartment I was in wobble like Jello. Tried to stand up in my chair and walk away from the window, ended up crawling away and having a small bookcase spill my books on me."
"Spent a few seconds leaning against the inside wall/sliding closet, looking at the ceiling and having a very vivid picture of being crushed to death by collapsing concrete and debris."
"Slept outside for two nights after evecuating. Apartment did not even have a crack in it! 10/10 would recommend Japanese government housing."
A Surprise Drop
"I was minding my own business walking in like 2 ft of water at a beach, holding my toddler. There was a massive clay pit that had opened up in the shallow water, but the water was murky so i didnt see it. I slid into it and the water was just deep enough to be over my head, because I couldn't stand up due to how slimy it was. It was shaped like a bowl. I couldn't swim up because my feet were just sliding into muck and it felt like an undertow. Just when I started breathing in water, my knee hit a rock in the side of the pit so I put my foot on it and launched us up. The lifeguards didn't do anything even after someone called us an ambulance to make sure we didn't dry drown.. We were under for maybe 20 seconds."
A Scary Walk Home
"So I was 14, walking home from the bus stop, as I did every day. It was about a mile from the bus stop to my house. I’d walk home about halfway with a friend of mine, before he turned off to go home. About 2 blocks from our bus stop, a guy started walking along with us.
"This was in a major city, so it wasn’t the first time someone started randomly talking to us. What was weird was that he wasn’t crazy or weird. He was pretty normal. He was asking about our lives, asking about what was going on. Randomly he asked about what we’d been up to the last Friday night. We both said about the same thing, that we’d been home with our families, which was true. Even though he didn’t sound crazy, this guy was giving bad vibes. Something was off."
"We got to the turnoff point where my buddy would go to his house, he said goodbye, and left to go home. By the way, I don’t blame him for doing this, regardless of what happened next. So this guy keeps walking with me, bad vibes continue, but he hasn’t said anything directly threatening yet. We get to a cross street, and he says, “Don’t run, my boys are right across the street.” Then I look and realize about 4 guys are following directly across the street. And that’s when it all sinks in. The bad vibes are real."
"I could tried to run at this point. I had a friend who only lived a block away. But I decided not to. Maybe I just thought it was pointless. I kept talking to him."
"We talked for a while more as we walked, and he told me that his brother had been stabbed around where my bus was let off a few days before, and I fit the description. He said he’d gotten out of the life, but was back to avenge his brother. I told him that it wasn’t me. He asked me if I was taking drugs. I said I’d f*cked around with pot but nothing more. He believed me. We kept walking."
"Eventually he started talking about why he’d gotten out of the life, and that I needed to stay on the right path. Eventually, we got back to my house. He said that he was glad he talked to me, because initially he was just going to shoot me and walk away, but he believed me and was glad he hadn’t. He waved his boys away, who were down the block. The he left, and wished me the best. I told my parents, reported it to the cops, didn’t sleep for a few nights, and eventually moved on. But yeah I almost died right there."
A Shock To The System
"Got shocked the other day. Work in the solar industry, I thought I was having a heart attack and that this was it"
Bond. James Bond.
"Playing an outdoor game we called 007 at age 11 where you get dropped off a distance away from a home base and you have to sneak back in the dark without being spotted by your driver, who would call you out if they saw you while driving around the neighborhood. Me and a friend were sneaking through irrigation canals to be off main roads (not through people’s properties, those were fenced off) and someone who’s backyard we were sneaking past cocked a shotgun and fired a warning shot into the ground of his yard. We crawled on our stomachs in the canal until we were far enough away. Pretty scary at 11."
"What the hell is wrong with people and immediately shooting at things that move in the dark?"
Noises In The Basement
"I have a more light-hearted one. I heard strange noises from my basement and though someone broke in. My heart was racing and I didn't know what to do. I kept listening down the stairs at the noise and decided it wasn't human. Turns out a woodpecker came down the flue and out the access hatch and was flying around. I managed to shoo him out the door and breathed a sigh of relief."
"I am terrified of birds so this would have been a lose-lose situation for me."
Metal Death Trap!
"I hydroplaned when someone break checked me, and ended up in a ditch, I was fine my car was fine, my heart rate was goin insane."
"This is like medical-related, not a situation like in most other replies. So basically, one day 2 years ago I started noticing some really odd symptoms I had that resembled a UTI (which I had never had before), but I kind of had this gut feeling it was more than that, even though the symptoms were subtle so I told my parents immediately."
"I woke up the next morning at 5am, with this sharp pain in my bottom right side. Oh, maybe it's a cramp. I use the bathroom and try to get back to sleep, but this pain starts growing, sooo much it feels like a stabbing pressure. I toss onto my side. The pain is still fully there. I go on my stomach. Still fully there. I sit up, walk around, do any position possible, and the pain is only getting worse and at this point, like 15 minutes after I woke up, unbearable."
"I have no idea what's going on and I'm scared out of my mind, so I tell my parents. Our first guess is appendicitis. So my mom rushes me to the ER, and on the car ride there I'm writhing in pain, crying, no matter how I sit or how I press my side the pain just continues to escalate."
"I get to the ER and they don't take me right away, and in the waiting room I'm throwing up into a bag from the pain and apologizing to a couple next to me in between bouts of dry heaving/vomit. I'm finally taken in, and they take me to get an ultrasound like 10 minutes later, but I can't stay still when the technician is taking it because of the pain."
"I eventually stop even attempting to cooperate and demand pain medicine, and when it's put into my IV I took like 10 minutes to lay there and breathe and feel better, it felt so nice to not be in extreme pain."
"Anyways, I had a kidney stone. A tiny little kidney stone made me think I was dying and was genuinely the most painful thing I've experienced in my life. I remember asking my mom on the car ride over if I was dying, because we had no idea what it was and why it was only getting worse. It's a genetic thing for me, but if you're reading this, drink water."
Well, I'm definitely going to hydrate all the time now!
People are required to have a license to drive, fish, and have certain jobs.
So it boggles my mind that people aren't required to have a license to have kids.
Some of the cruelest and most vicious things I've ever heard were words uttered by a parent to a child.
As an adult, I was haunted by a few thigs.
I can't imagine the scaring of an adolescent.
Redditor Tight_Anywhere6794 wanted to hear about the things parents have said in the past that haunts everyone still, so they asked:
"What insult have your parents said, that is stuck in your head as an adult?"
I've been blessed with the mother I had.
So I can't speak from experience.
But I've heard parenting horror stories.
Bad ExpressionsSad Kid GIF by 1tvGiphy
“'You’re so annoying.' Said to me as a young kid while I was expressing enthusiasm over some new interest. Later my father complains I never tell him anything."
"What did I do to deserve a fat kid?"
"My parents also mocked me for being fat, and outright physically abused me as in forcefully grabbed my fat child manboobs or slapped me while calling me fat-related names."
"A lot of people at school did it too, so obviously I have a lot of self-image issues like I never let anyone see me without clothes these days. The worst part is that I legitimately internalized a lot of hate, I could never care for myself enough to actually get fit."
What's My Name?
"My parents divorced when I was young and they hate each other. My mom would call me my dad's name when she was really upset. What makes it worse is that I confided in her that I never wanted to be like my dad. She used that ammunition against me."
"That's awful. You are your own person. You aren't your father."
"'You can't even laugh right.'"
"My mom in a weird moment I thought we were bonding. There's something inherently extra evil when someone tells you your joy is wrong. Told her I'm engaged and hoped she could at least be happy I'm happy and she ghosted everyone to the point the family thought died. She's a mess."
"I'll never understand parents that are so hard on their own children that they can't even be happy for them. So their sole function is to bring misery to their offspring?"
EvilOh My God Wow GIF by The Roku ChannelGiphy
"My little brother was drowning, I tried to save him but also almost drowned, we got rescued by a neighbor. My mom told me that they should've left me in the pond. I haven't spoken to her in many years."
Good Lord. How do people like this exist?
"She told me I was acting just like my father when I would get upset. I would just get kinda pissy and sulk. He would go on rampages and scream and hit and throw things. He pushed her down the stairs once. I would never lay a finger on my current partner. The worst part is I look just like him. I was wondering if my mother always expected me to turn into my dad. I prove her wrong every day."
10 Years Old
"When I was ~10 years old, my mum once said 'If I could go back in time and make sure I never gave birth to you, I would in a heartbeat.'"
"Never forgot it. Talked to her about it a couple of times years later and her responses ranged from 'That never happened' to 'Oh yeah and I suppose I’m just the worst mother ever' and finally 'Yeah but I didn’t mean it, you know that.'"
"Messed me up tho tbh. Another one was '[older sibling] was the only child we actually planned for, the rest of you were accidents.' I don’t think it was intended as an insult, but being told your entire existence was an accident as a child kinda stung."
“'You’re the biggest mistake I ever made.' - my mother when I was 5. I’m 32 now and it’s been the undercurrent for our relationship ever since, constantly wondering if anything I’ve achieved or struggled for is something she’s genuinely proud of or just relieved to say I wasn’t a total failure on her part."
"Not a parent but a grandparent, I was adopted when I was 12 years old (my parents were both drug addicts so I was in and out of foster care most of my life) my adopted mother's father turned to me on Christmas Eve when no one else was around and said 'My daughter should have never adopted you, she should have let you stay on the streets where you belong'… he got nicer as he got older and sicker but I couldn’t find it in myself to forget what he said even almost 10 years later. Went to the funeral for moral support but was indifferent about his passing."
Just MeSad Kids GIF by Cian DucrotGiphy
"I was an only child and lonely. When I asked for a sibling, the response was 'If you want to know why we don't have more kids, go look in the mirror.'"
Some people should never have children.
A tough realization that most of us have to process and accept at some point is the fact that our parents lied to us when we were kids.
But the tougher fact to process may not be the lying itself, but some of the lies that were told along the way.
Redditor Fearless-surfur-ee asked:
"What was the biggest lie you believed?"
"That adults knew what they were doing."
"Maybe not ALL adults, but I definitely thought that adults with responsible jobs have their s**t together. Then I realized they do not have their s**t together at all."
"Which in turn makes me feel somewhat better about being an adult with a responsible job who does not have their s**t together."
"It’s illegal to turn on the dome light while the vehicle is moving."
"Nope. Turns out it’s just annoying as h**l."
A Lottery Trick
"When I was a kid, my cousin convinced me for, like, an hour that her mom had won the lottery. I can still feel the loss of millions of dollars two decades later, and that s**t hurts, bro."
"WHY, JESSICA, WHY?!"
That Truth Hurts
"I’ll fill up my car with gas before work tomorrow morning."
"I will do stuff like this for my fiancé in a heartbeat, but if I need to fill up my own gas tank to avoid doing it tomorrow? That sounds like a problem for future me."
When That Grief Hits Seven Years Later...
"My mom told me when I was five and my favorite dog died that it doesn't matter that dogs die, because in seven years, they respawn."
"So I was like, 'Oh, fine. See you then, bud, I will be older, and we will play again.'"
"My hamster died while I was in school. Went back home, and I instantly saw he was a little bit different."
"My mum tricked me into thinking it was the same hamster and he hadn't changed a bit."
"Mom told me the truth a few years later. I was so p**sed off."
"My mom has done the same thing with my nephew’s parakeet. One day, Pickles #1 flew into the pantry, somehow got stuck in a case of Diet Coke, and got crushed by a can avalanche."
"He was immediately replaced by Pickles #2. My nephew asked why Pickles was so mean to him now. Pickles #2 is an a**hole."
"I’m suspicious that we are on Pickles #3 now but I don’t want to know for sure."
"My mother's cousin did that with her little boy's rabbit."
"The new rabbit was a psychopath. Having his previously loving rabbit now hate him and repeatedly attack him was almost certainly more traumatizing than learning about death."
"I always wondered if stories like that were part of the inspiration for 'Pet Sematary.'"
Just in Case
"The microwave will explode if I put my face too close to it while it’s heating food."
A SUPER Secret Affair
"That my parents were married."
"The truth is, my father was, just not to my mother."
A Creative Story
"That my dad moved out and rented a room in the house of a female friend for tax reasons."
Such Good Friends
"Outside of dumb lies your parents tell you as kids, my friend who worked at a gas station with a big food station that has some ground beef items told me they use kangaroo meat for their ground beef because it was cheaper than cow."
"I am gullible with my friends."
The Lie That Keeps Going
"When I was 15, over my summer break, one day my mom called and said she was gonna pick me up and we were gonna go to my stepdad's for the weekend."
"I didn’t understand why I had to go when she would leave me at home by myself for the weekend all the time. I was old enough that I knew the rules and she could trust me."
"She told me there was a mixup at the electrical company and they seem to think we didn’t pay the bill and so the power was gonna be shut off, so we were gonna go to my stepdad's until that got sorted."
"That was a lie."
"A weekend turned into two weeks, which turned into a month, and then the entire summer. We hadn’t been home in over two months. I kept asking when we could go home and she’d always have an excuse."
"We reached September, she’s driving me from one city to my hometown to register for the following year of school, which started up in a week, and this was the closest I had been to home in two months! After I registered, we bypassed my house and started heading towards the highway to go back to my stepdad’s."
"It was at that moment I snapped and started freaking out! I knew something was wrong."
"She pulled the car over and started crying. Apparently, my brother had been helping her pay the bills and when he moved out, she could no longer afford the place on her own. So my stepdad was trying to help but he had his own house and kids he had to look after, and he couldn’t keep it up. We had been evicted."
"We stayed with my stepdad for the summer while my mom tried to work something out with the landlord, but they couldn’t come to an arrangement. Because she never told me, and in order to buy herself time to work something out, she had to be comfortable with potentially leaving EVERYTHING behind…"
"Well, she couldn’t work it out with the landlord and we lost EVERYTHING. The only thing I got out of that house was the shoes on my feet and a few outfits and pajamas enough for a weekend stay."
"My mother wanted to keep the lie going for as long as she could to buy herself time that she had to leave behind everything to keep it going. She never went back for anything, so eventually I can only assume it was all thrown away."
"So not only did I lose material belongings like my computer, my video games, and all my clothes, but I lost basic things like my own bedroom… and privacy as a teenager! I slept on my stepdad’s couch for almost two years until his daughters moved out and I took over their old room."
"But I also lost sentimental things like childhood pictures/videos, the memory box I started when I was seven, and the porcelain dolls my dad had given me over the years, he bought me two per year (birthday and Christmas,) and now that my dad is dead, those are things I wish I still had."
An Elaborate Tale
"When I was very young, we had a pet hamster. He got out of his cage, so my dad put the cage in the basement, thinking he might get hungry and get back in."
"One morning I woke up and there was the hamster in his cage in the usual place. I asked my mom how they found him and she told me she opened the door to the cellar and there he was dragging his cage back upstairs."
"It wasn't until I was a teenager and remembered the exchange that it occurred to me she obviously made that up."
"That acne would only be a problem when I was a teenager."
"I started breaking out in the third grade and haven't had clear skin since. I'll be 27 pretty soon. This one hits home."
Part of the Family
"When I was like 16, I found out that one of my sisters wasn’t actually my sister. She was actually just best friends with my oldest sister growing up, and she lived with my family from when she was 12 or 13 through 18 (she and my oldest sister are 15 years older than me)."
"Unfortunately, her parents wouldn’t sign her over for adoption and didn’t contribute anything to my mom raising her for six years."
"The weirdest part is that my family is predominantly fair-skinned, blonde with blue eyes, but the girl I thought was my sister was traditional Hispanic with darker skin, dark hair, and brown eyes. My mom was always very tan and had darker skin and hair throughout my childhood, so I thought that my other two sisters and myself were the odd ones out."
The Deepest Betrayal of All
"On April Fool's while I was getting ready for school on a cold winter day, my mom told me, 'School is canceled! It's a snow day!'"
"I ran around for a good two minutes celebrating before she told me, 'April Fools!'"
"I've never felt so betrayed in my life."
"You better be a mastermind supervillain by now."
"Thank you for sharing your Joker origin story, lol (laughing out loud)."
These lies have a wide range from the hilarious to the absolutely diabolical, maybe even with a few villain origin stories thrown in.
A common thread throughout most of these was someone telling a lie in order to avoid a tougher conversation, which only led the younger person to have a lot more to process later.