Waiters, waitresses, and bartenders of Reddit who were involved in some big moments in some people's lives were asked: "How did you mess it up for them?" These are some of the best answers.
I promptly say my hellos and say something alone the lines of, "Hey you have a son right!? How old is he now?" Turns out their son passed when he was 5 due to cancer.. Wife of course is tearing up and excuses herself. Never felt like such a piece of [crap].
2/24 I accidentally split a small amount of white wine on a woman's coat while clearing the floor. She instantly gets this look of vehement anger and disgust on her face but before she can say anything her husband butts in. "Oh thank god! That coat is hideous."
They were both drunk and really pissed off with each other. I apologised and tried to escape. The wife kept following me around trying to yell at me but the husband just kept stopping her mid-sentence, commenting on her horrible clothes and how he wished I would spill stuff on all her belongings.
They eventually started yelling and screaming at each other and were escorted out by security.
3/24 Family of about 15 people are out for this man's 40th birthday party. His wife is a vegetarian, has been for 23 years. She tells the waiter, who's only been a server for like a month. She orders a vegetarian hamburger with blacken seasoning (which is like cajun seasoning, but makes the burger look black).
Cool, this mf hits the button for a turkey burger, doesn't check when he grabs the tray, and gives it to her. So it's covered in this spicy seasoning that doesn't really let the color of the patty sow, and she eats most of the burger before she realizes it's not vegetarian.
She lost her [mind]. The party of 15 people all walk out without paying (manager said he'd comp their meals), but they just dipped. She sent multiple emails to corporate, she was vomiting all night. Didn't eat for like four days after. Like 1000 word emails that are straight rage.
Ok, so if this happened to me, I'd never go back to that restaurant. But she couldn't resist all that free [stuff] the corporate managers were going to give her to stop bashing the restaurant. They fired the [bad] waiter, gave her hella freebies, and she comes back.
First time back, just a nice dinner with her husband, she orders a vegetarian burger, tells the waitress she's been a vegetarian for 23 years, pls make sure it's vegetarian.
Veggie burger comes out with bacon on it. Bruh.
4/24 Valentine's Day, 1993. I'll never forget the shame. I was waiting tables in college and our restaurant had replaced all the big tables in the dining room with bistro style 2 tops. Real close together. For couples. It was 9:00 and we were packed. I grabbed a plate off one table, trying to be quick but discreet. When I brought my arm straight back with the plate, I moved too far. There was another one of those 2 tops inches from my back. My right elbow caught a 60 year old lady right at the base of her skull. HARD. Knocked her smooth out. Face-planted into her dinner.
The whole dining room gasped. I freaked. Manager freaked. Her husband freaked. Everybody freaked. Except her. When she came to a few seconds later, she was the sweetest, most gracious, kind person you've ever met. Face covered in fish and asparagus, but she could NOT have been nicer. Which made me feel even worse, of course. We comped their meal, gave them a $100 gift card, and basically offered to be their slaves. But they wouldn't hear of it. They even tipped. That was 20 years ago and I STILL feel awful about it.
5/24 Birthday party for a families grandfather. It was a nice little cake with some type of ww2 fighter plane stuck on top of it because he was a veteran. Presented the cake they sang all is fine and dandy. So many comments on how awesome the cake looks, grandpa is so grateful for his family getting him a thoughtful cake. Tells me how excited he is.
Go back to cut the cake with the pantry girl and we drop the cake and it is all smashed all over the floor.
I felt so terrible. Grandpa was understanding and didn't care too much. But daughter was pissed and basically in tears.
6/24 I lost an engagement ring on Valentine's Day when my restaurant was completely packed and super busy. My manager stalled dessert at that table for about an hour while I looked and still served all of my other tables. The ring box slipped through a hole in my apron, got kicked around by servers who only step ON or OVER things in the kitchen, so I found the box after about 20 minutes in one place and the ring 40 minutes later in the most disgusting pile of grit and grime under the stove.
The guy wasn't stupid and he figured that I had lost the ring, but my manager saved the day by sending someone to the bakery across the street and getting an elaborate cake to make it seem as if we had them wait in order to prepare such a wonderful surprise. Plus he kept the drinks flowing at their table. The special cake, free bottle of champagne and finally the ring made everything work out in the end...for the couple. I had to pay for the cake, all of their drinks and a $150 bottle of champagne.
7/24 It was the grandma's fault but I worked for a Mexican restaurant in college and we had to use these huge trays. Anyway I'm walking a tray loaded with chips and queso as well as about seven margaritas served in oversized glassware. There is only enough room between the table and the divider for me to walk behind the people. Well this grandma decides to abruptly back into me as I'm walking by fully loaded and the whole tray spills all over this poor girl who just graduated from college. She is crying like hysterical and I'm trying to clean up when my manager just tells me to go home. [Crappy] thing was I needed the money for rent. Never went back after that.
8/24 So I was a host at a restaurant but I would kinda help everyone who looked like they needed help. My manager one day asked if I wanted to come in on a day we are usually closed because there is a large party celebrating 3 children. It was a confirmation, a first communion and a birthday party for 3 siblings combined.
I had never done this before but I was handed a big tray with about 15 glasses of water on them. I ended up taking all the glasses from one side and when it started to not be balanced I over corrected and about 5 glasses of water tipped over on my tray and the lip of the tray was like a water slide. It launched 5 glasses worth of water at the 5 year old who just had her first communion in this beautiful white dress.
I was mortified and ran inside the kitchen while the other servers and bussers helped tidy up. When I came out the mom was waiting for me and pulled me aside.
She said "Hey, everyone told me that its your first day doing this job. Don't worry, it was an accident. It was just water, she wasn't upset and we aren't mad either. Everyone thinks it is a great story that we can talk about for a while."
I was so relieved she was that nice and forgiving but deep down, I think I [messed] up that day.
9/24 I ruined a family's vacation, apparently. I was a server at an oceanfront restaurant in the Myrtle Beach area about five years ago. Summer tourist season was in full swing, and there were happy, sunburnt families everywhere. We were on a long wait, so there were people waiting outside on the front patio until they were called for their table. There was also seating outside on the same patio, and I had a table out there. The front door to the restaurant was large and wooden, and only had a small window at the top that resembled a window on a boat.
I was running around like [mad] during dinner rush, and was taking drinks outside to my table. I pushed the front door open with vigor, and proceeded to knock a little girl down who was standing in front of it. As soon as I heard the loud "thump," I knew something horrible had happened. I see the girl on the ground SCREAMING bloody murder. Luckily, I don't see any blood. Momma Bear starts yelling her head off at me. Like, in my face, telling me they were leaving, and thanking me for ruining their vacation on the first day. I was trying SO hard to be sympathetic because I have a bad habit of laughing when I get really nervous. She talked to the manager and left. I didn't get in trouble. I was just happy I didn't spill my table's tray full of drinks during the ordeal.
10/24 For a little more pizzazz the people brought in sparklers to add to the cake instead of just candles. The waitress lights them...now you probably have only lit sparklers outside so you, like all parties involved here, have no idea how much smoke they emit. It was enough to engage the fire alarm...no sprinklers, but ear piercing alarm and emergency lighting....on a Saturday night during the dinner rush. We had to evacuate and wait for the fire department. Lots of people who already ate just left. It was a fun little, calm, relaxing change of pace compared to the chaos of a typical Saturday night in a restaurant.
11/24 Long story short, dude says, "Hey, I want to propose, can you help me?" as he hands me a ring. Ok, this would be cool if the family of 14 was just walking in. Dude said this as I'm taking away the plate of his main course. Yeah, they are basically done. Really dude? We are a well known, high end place. We can do some pretty awesome stuff...with time. People phone such information in, a few months in advance.
I quickly grab two servers and tell them to take full control of my other 2 tables. I grab my manager, and two of us head to our barkey. We get the kitchen manager involved. 5-10 minutes later, we have a large platter, maybe 14 inches by 14 inches, fully decorated with special desserts, freshly drawn designs bordering the whole plate, and "Will you marry me?" written in the middle, with one desert holding the ring. I walk out, and he already makes eye contact with me. I wink to let him know it's on.
I approach the table and say roughly, "Ladies and Gentlemen, we appreciate your return business so we have a little complimentary dessert to enjoy." I place it down directly in front of the couple. There are some gasps, he gets down on one knee, she's crying, YES, cell phone pictures, and then my manager comes out with some comped champagne. Later, one of the moms says, "I was looking for you earlier to ask for some coffee, but I guess you were busy with more important stuff huh?"
12/24 We had a dude, Dan, who would come in regularly but with different women on separate occasions. Ruby was his wife, Jessica was his girlfriend. Now he's a regular, the whole staff knows this and feels terrible but what can we do? We can't cause a scene by telling the wife, we'd get fired. And we have to be pleasant to the dude and whichever woman he's with or we get in trouble with our manager. But each of the serving staff dreads having them sit in our section because it means having to fake like you don't know the [jerk] was in there Monday night with another woman.
They sit down in my section. I roll up with my cheery fake smile to take an order. Now I don't know why I did this, but since they've been regulars forever so I do some banter about its nice to see them again this week, they tell me it's their five year anniversary. I say "Oh that's sweet" or something and I ask Dan for his order take it, and turn to his wife.
"So Jessica, it's a special night what can I get to make it perfect for you?" Her face turns to stone. Oh god. I called her the girlfriend's name.
I try to correct it but it's too late. Ruby rounds on Dan and hisses "You bring your [other woman] here?" Dan asks me to get my manager. I scurry off as the screaming match begins. The manager, in between Ruby loudly verbally skewering Dan for being faithless, asks them to leave.
Manager comes back and tells me that I'm fired. He thinks, and Dan apparently insisted, I did it on purpose.
13/24 Today we had a birthday so 6 of us got together to do the customary whooping and hollering to the table. As we were walking out, the yelling woke up a small baby. Our announcer yelled, "Mike is celebrating his 26th birthday, help us give him a hand!" 'Mike' leans over and, in a half whisper says, "My name is Brandon." Our announcer is so embarrassed, she drops his cake onto the floor.
14/24 I'm a hostess at a fine dining restaurant. For birthdays and anniversaries we add either birthday confetti or rose petals to the table to decorate it for the guests. I was seating a couple and since it said it was their anniversary on their reservation notes I took the rose petals with me and as they sat down I sprinkled them at the table and said something like "since you're celebrating your anniversary we like to decorate the table for you". The guy looked up and said "it's our anniversary?!" And the girl then got pissed and screamed "YES. why do you think we came here?!" I then gave them their menus and left as fast as I possibly could and told my coworkers about the incident.
15/24 My manager was helping me with this group of girls who had a birthday. I thought let's make it fun and grab everyone's attention and sing for this girl. For some reason my manager thought he should crack a joke so he asks the girl how old is she turning and she responded with "18" with some giggles. So he then proceeds to yell "YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS!" He takes a break to build the suspense and then shouts "SHES LEGAL!" Not a single person laughed. Everyone just stared at us and the girl sitting just became super weirded out. Anyways it was a super awkward happy birthday song and a swift exit from the ladies.
16/24 Spilled beer on a woman who had invited her family out to dinner to announce her pregnancy. The woman wasn't too upset (she got a HUGE discount), but my manager was PISSED.
17/24 There was a baby shower at a restaurant I worked at during university - it was in a separate room away from the entrance, I had been directing guests for at least half an hour when a very pregnant women and her friend walked in. They were looking a little lost so I asked if they were there for the baby shower as I had with all the other guests and the pregnant lady looked shocked and the friend looked extremely angry, turns out it was a surprise and they hadn't told us! They had gone to a huge effort and racked a huge bill before hand so they must have been super pissed off. I apologised but the family weren't happy - I avoided for the rest of the afternoon!
18/24 So we have this party at the restaurant and there's this one woman with a nice fur coat. Like really nice. She's sitting at one of the tables closest to the door to the kitchen and placed her coat on the chair she was sitting at. One of the servers and I moved to the table to clear some plates and were stacking them to carry more. As we backed away we bumped into each other and a small dish of ranch dressing slides off a plate. The thing does a 360 on the way down, throws a spiral of dressing into the air and nails her coat, but not her. Nobody saw but us, we looked at each other and noped out. I think she was too drunk to notice as she left, since she didn't say anything. Still feel bad about trashing her coat, though.
19/24 Had a bday party , the boss insisted I cut the cake, I am very bad under pressure. After talking it over with the lady she said she could do it but my boss was like no she will take care of it. So I bring out the cake and I kinda just stare around for a second like "Don't screw this up." I cut one of the most crooked pieces ever and stared up at the table nobody noticed, so I kept going and this one lady stood up and was like "Oh no hunny here let me show you how go cut a cake properly." Also had an engagement I kinda knew what he was up to because he had that look when he was reaching for something and there was rumours he was going to so I stayed back to let him propose , that's when my boss came by and said "Go check up on your table" as soon as I did he was proposing and I interrupted with "Are we still doing alright over here?" he just looked me dead in the eye it was so awkward.
20/24 I was getting balloons for some kids bc it was a birthday party, I asked another server if she'd go around and tie them to the kid's wrists for me so I wouldn't have to speak to them bc direct quote "I hate kids". Dad was right behind me waiting til I was finished to ask me for something.
21/24 A couple and the girl's mother was celebrating the girl's birthday. A lot of the waitresses were freaking out because the guy looked identical to Joseph Gordon-Levitt. I finally asked him if anyone has ever told him how he looked like JGL and he's like "All of the time." He then got into a conversation with me and was super talkative every time I went over. At the beginning of the dinner, the girl was sitting with her mother, half way through she sat next to him and started to call him her boyfriend every time I came over. I then realized she thought I was hitting on him so I brought up my boyfriend and how the staff was dying for me to ask hoping she'd get the hint that I was never hitting on him in the first place. At the end, she skipped dessert when I asked if she wanted a free one for her birthday and quickly asked for the check. Something tells me her birthday dinner didn't go as planned.
22/24 A girl was having her 15th birthday party. There was a lot of family there, like 15 people plus her boyfriend. Her grandma had brought in a cake and gave it to the person up front to put in the fridge. Now, unless you say no singing, we're going to sing when we bring your cake out. So we do and the girl flips out. Gets really mad and angsty, yelling at poor grandma how she ruined everything. Grandma's like "I never told them to sing! It's not my fault" while the staff stand there awkwardly. Her boyfriend took her outside to calm down, and she came back in to eat cake.
23/24 A couple came in to celebrate a birthday, and waited very patiently (too patiently) for their order. I was very busy that night, and after about 45 minutes when they finally asked where their food was, I checked with the kitchen. As it turns out, I never turned the ticket in. It was in my pocket, and the meal was going to take another 20 minutes minimum, even if I rushed it.
They had after-dinner plans, and had to leave without eating. I admitted my mistake. I felt terrible about it, so I used my employee discount and bought them an entire cheesecake and gave it to them on their way out with my apologies.
They came back a few days later and asked for my section and left a very generous tip. They spoke to my manager and explained what had happened at the birthday dinner and thanked her for hiring such a great server. My boss was so impressed that she gave me the $50 back that I spent on the cheesecake.
24/24 I was waitressing at someone's wedding reception, and there wasn't enough room between the tables because my boss told them they could fit more people than they could. I was getting drinks to everyone (130 people at least, 6 waitresses and a busboy) and I went past the table with the cake on it. The cake was covered in icing sunflowers and had a cute little personalized sculpture of the bride and groom as a topper. As I went past with the pitchers of tea, my booty clipped the table and shook the chubby sculpture off the top of the cake. Then I tried to keep going, but I'm sure people noticed it was my fault. The planner was able to put a few flowers on top and stack the halves of the tiny sculpture so it looked whole again, but that whole time I felt nervous on top of stressed.
Image Source: Luis Molinero / shutterstock.com
And there are just as many grievances for which we are not at all sorry.
Curious to hear about people's track record of their questionable behavior, Redditor NanoPKx asked:
"What is something bad you have done with no regrets?"
Is it petty theft or flat out stealing? You decide.
The Parting Gift
"'Forgetting' to bring back a company ipad after they forgot about me having it. Actually they never asked for it back so I still have it and use it."
"I stole a barn kitten while delivering packages for FedEx. He kept climbing my legs and getting into the van, sitting under the wheel when I tried to back out (it was a steep driveway, no way to swing the van around). I called the number on the package, looked the name up on facebook, called the local non-emergency to get contact info, all failed."
"So I took him. Now, if you're not from a rural environment, you might not understand that barn cats like that are 'no-man's-cats.' For all the owners know, he got sick or got got by a coyote. And he would have died, because when we got him to the vet he had a nasty upper resp infection and some other nasties."
"Now, one deformed nasal passage and the cutest snore later, we have a bonkers little orange cat with the heaviest penchant for snuggling I've ever seen (his name is Monty btw)."
"Edit: I forgot to pay my Cat Tax: https://imgur.com/a/HIXS4us"
"Edit Part 2: Monty loves the attention. Thank you for loving him as much as we do :3"
"MmmmMMMMRrrrrrrrrrrAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAW" -Montgomerey Valentine, 2022
The Dirty Treat
"A housemate of mine kept eating mine and my girlfriends food and even though I asked him to stop the only thing he would ever say is 'I thought it was mine' then keep eating it."
"Well I bought my girlfriend some ice cream she really enjoys and she put the half she didn’t finish back in the freezer. Well when she want to get the rest it was gone and it made me madder than I think it probably should have."
"The very next time I saw him and somehow keeping a straight apologetic face I told him how he accidentally ate our sex ice cream and that bits of it had been on our parts etc. I told him I felt guilty not to tell him and that I had to apologise for him to eat such a thing."
"I will never forget the face he made when I told him. A face of pure self disgust and shock to which all he had to say was 'I wish you never told me that' and proceeded to move out around a month later."
"Although he didn’t actually eat sex ice cream, like why the f'k would you put it back after use anyway? Sometimes I wonder if I went to far but in that moment I just did not care at all. He still doesn’t know it isn’t true and I’ll probably never see him again."
"F'k you Vitas buy your own food."
Vengeance is sweet.
"A drunk driver hit my parked car, left a huge dent in the front driver’s side door, and then drove away. I happened to be looking out the window at the time and saw the whole thing, including his plate number. Cops got there not long after and took my statement. After a couple days and a couple phone calls, I found out nothing was going to come of it because he was the son of the sheriff the next county over."
"Fast forward a couple months, I see his car parked behind a local bar within walking distance of my apartment. I got out my hunting knife and sliced all four of his tires, and made a couple trips around it destroying the paint job. Yellow Pontiac Sunfire, and I still remember the goddamn plate number even after almost 20 years."
For The People
"I was a GM for a retailer that was going out of business. During the liquidation I let my employees that worked until the end store product they wanted to buy in a closet I claimed I didn't have a key to. Oh the final days I sold them all the items they requested for 95% off. 70" tvs, ipads, gaming laptops whatever they requested."
"Years ago I worked for a wealthy dude who was married to someone semi-famous. He would waltz in every morning and talk about the fantastic dinner he had the night before, how he hung out with some other famous person or whatever else."
"He paid me peanuts. I had a hard time making ends meet."
"I was the office assistant and IT guy. So it comes time to get a new computer for one of the designers. I spec something out, and show it to him. It was a ripper of a machine for the time (early 2000s). But it wasn’t expensive enough for bossman."
"So I added a really high end graphics card. Boss was happy then. The card added nothing for the designer: they only did illustrator and photoshop."
"So I came in that weekend and swapped the graphics card for my aging one from home."
"No one ever knew. Or cared. And I got a new graphics card."
When times are tough, people had to do what it took to survive.
"In college I was so poor I would steal toilet paper from the supply closet in our major building."
Hungry College Buddy
"I stood watch for a college friend who was going hungry because he’d been disowned and his roommates had made living with him intolerable after he came out."
"I was loosely affiliated with an off campus program with local churches that gave free student dinners on Thursdays. We would go to church to eat, then bring dishes into the kitchen."
"Anyway, he would go in there and steal stuff like peanut butter, literal bread (not an allegory), granola bars etc. while I watched out for the pastor."
"Eventually we both got caught, the pastor for the college students got a bit mad because he was responsible for us while we were there to eat. And I think it was offensive on some level to steal from church. But then he saw what my friend was taking, and asked him if he had enough to eat. My friend shamefacedly said no, not usually."
“'Okay, fine. Put the food back, and come with me.' Took my friend grocery shopping instead, got him connected with the food pantry and community garden at church instead."
Based on these examples, people didn't twice about their actions in the heat of the moment.
Within reason, we all gotta somehow get by.
But do you think their actions deserve punishment?
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When a person sees someone they care about going through a struggle or crisis, their instinct is to uplift them with positive advice.
But sometimes, the wisdom imparted by friends isn't always helpful or relevant to the situation.
Curious to hear from strangers online who could do without specific knowledge, Redditor Saibotnl1 asked:
"What life advice can just f'k off?"
These Redditors have a problem with how certain people have on outlook on life.
Time To Rest
"Sleep when you’re dead."
"Cool, but you’re going to be dead a lot sooner."
"People have it so much worse than you so don’t be sad!"
"To that I like to say, 'people have it so much better than you so don't be happy!'"
Your Life Path
"Almost anything relating to what age you must be in order to buy a house, have children, marry, have a profession, or do anything else. Seriously, everyone's life is different from everyone else's. Make your life the way you want it to be. If you so desire. Up to you."
On The Contrary
“Cheaters never prosper”
"Yes, they f'king do."
People can get out of any situation they find displeasing.
But others feel people should just "stick it out."
"Just ignore bullys or get someone else to handle it for you. I have never seen this work, only makes it worse. The only effective way I've seen to deal with them is by not making yourself an easy target and make them scared to f'k with you again. If going psycho on their a** is the only thing they'll respond to that's their fault. Also want to add in schools they will punish you for self defense but that punishment is only sitting around a few hours in detention or sitting around at home with a suspension. The punishment is temporary boredom, it's absolutely nothing compared to being bullied and when it's over the important message will still stand that you will not tolerate being a victim."
– User Delted
Remain to be Miserable
"Stick it out"
"Whether that's sh**ty jobs, shi**y relationships, shi**y living situations..."
"By all means don't just give up on things when you face challenges, but if something feels wrong or is wrecking your peace then take some control and change it if you can!"
"Easy for you to say," might be an auto-response to these suggestions for many people.
Invitation For Recklesslessness
"Live like everyday was your last"
Yall know what people do when they learn they have a single day left to live?"
A Possible Consequence
"I did that as a teenager and ended up homeless and addicted to heroin. Didn’t pan out for me too well."
"19 years sober though today."
A Practical Approach
"If I knew with certainty that I had one day left, I'd double-check all my financials, my will, and my insurance policies, make sure my wife had all of my passwords and knew where all the money was, spend the rest of the day with her and the kids, then call the medical examiner and ask to lie down on the gurney so that when I die they won't strain their back moving my remains out of my house."
Nose Stuck In A Book
"Work while they sleep. Study while they party"
"That's not a recipe for success, that's a recipe for a lot of white hairs, burnout syndrome and a stroke before your 40s..."
Doesn't Apply To Everyone
"Do what you love and money will follow"
"I love walking my dogs and grilling food for my friends but That sh*t doesn't pay the bills as well as my engineering degree!"
While people's intentions are good, they're better off keeping their two cents in their own pockets.
Not everyone likes to hear platitudes.
Sometimes, people just want to know they're not alone with their problems over listening to unlikely solutions that are nothing more than superficial pick-me-ups.
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Kids start going to school from the age of five, and for the most part, they spend more time at school than at home. Because of that, teachers can become very important figures in the lives of their students.
Some students don't have the best home lives. Some keep it to themselves, but others confide in their teachers.
Curious about various situations, Redditor Delicious_Mastodon83 asked:
"teachers of reddit what is the saddest thing you found out about a student?"
In Need of Parents
"Not a teacher but was a school-based therapist. Had a student (7 -8 y/o) I didn’t know knock on my office door and ask if I’d adopt her and “if you have room, my brother too, but if not, that’s ok, we can be split up. We’re split up now. And I don’t take up space. I just need a sleeping bag”. Broke my heart."
Heartbreaking, But Industrious
"My mom taught at a school in a bad neighborhood in Chicago in the mid 90’s. There was a second grader that would save his milk and ketchup packers from lunch for his mom so she had something to eat when she got home from work."
"Not a teacher but a parent with a 9 year old son. Every day I pack extra in my sons lunch because he tells me he has a friend that never has anything to eat. It's winter and my son came home and told me his friend was turning up with shorts and shirt and holes in his shoes. So I sent in a jumper and long pants for him to wear and some slightly used but good condition shoes. I have been up to the school recently and the teacher pulled me aside and thanked me profusely for helping this child. Apparently teachers are not allowed to aid kids they teach here in Australia and they have already reported the issue 3 times to child welfare without results so I was the only one helping this child. The teacher told me before I started sending in more food and clothes, this child would steal others food from their lunches and look through the bins because he was so hungry. They doubt he gets fed at home. So now I make sure to always send an extra lunch and some school clothes/supplies when I can. I can only hope child welfare eventually does something but it breaks my heart."
Amazing Big Sister
"It was right after winter break and before class started I was just talking with some students and asked if they got anything fun for the holidays. One girl said on no, I don’t ever get presents, my mom is a drug addict. But I went out and got some stuff for my little sister so that she can have a real Christmas."
"She just said it so matter-of-fact. She was so used to being the parent to her little sister that she didn’t even care about her own childhood. It totally broke my heart."
The Importance Of Human Affection
"Second hand story from my mom, elementary teacher for 30ish years. She had a hug or a handshake out the door policy, just some small contact and a proper goodbye, and had this young boy who always picked the hug. She wondered why he always went for it, most kids would go back and forth depending on their mood that day, so she asked him why he was always so excited for the end of day hug? His answer, "It's the only one I ever get.""
Coming Out The Other Side
"Two teenage boys (16/14) with learning disabilities were on my caseload, they never missed school but often ditched class. They were homeless mid-year after they went home from school to find the locks changed, their Mom had abandoned them for a new boyfriend. She didn't leave an address for them to find her."
"*Edit: both eventually dropped out, however a couple of years later the younger brother came back to visit. He and his brother were both working construction, and his brother had gotten married, had a child, and was living with his wife’s family."
"The younger had roommates and was saving for a car. He told me it was a shame I didn’t have kids, because I would make a good Dad."
"People often persevere, even with the odds stacked against them."
"Not me but my daughter is a teacher, she has lots of stories but one that stands out for me is one of her kindergarten kids saying she was tired and her asking why, the little girl explained that she had been up all night with her mums newborn baby. She did this every night, fed her bottles and everything."
Luckily, He Was Resilient
"This year I had a 17 year old kid enroll at my school. He was sitting in my math class and I could tell he was struggling. After class I took some extra time to go over a concept with him. I asked him to read the question to me, and he sat there silently. He then looked at me and said “I’m not going to lie to you, I cannot read. I have no idea how to say these words""
"Turned out at age 17 he was illiterate and had been kept out of school by his very religious, controlling parents. Over the past few months he has worked very hard! Now he can finally read at an 8th grade level and he is STILL improving!!"
– User Deleted
A Heroic Teacher
"I worked in an inner city charter school. One of my students (`M10) had a sib (M8) in a lower grade. The mom was there every day in the beginning of the year encouraging them, helping them and generally being very supportive... until a CPS agent spoke to me asking about her behavior. After CPS left things went downhill. The boys showed up late to class even though they lived a half block away from school. When in school both boys were tired from sleeping in the car while their mom "went fishing". She also had two very young girls which she dragged around making the boys take care of them. One day the boys didn't show up and their teacher walked over to the house to find the mom had loaded up the fridge, paid the rent for the month and abandoned them. The teacher (a candidate for sainthood btw) took them in, adopted them and grew them up to be great men."
This is really heartbreaking stuff! Luckily, teachers aren't just another adult in your life; they can be your saving grace as well.
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TRIGGER WARNING: This article contains sensitive content about depression and mental health.
As the stigma around mental health lessens (however slowly), people are more forthcoming about the problems they are facing. One of the most common mental health issues is depression.
Depression can affect many different types of people. Factors such as gender, race, nationality, and even age have no bearing on whether someone suffers from depression or not.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), globally, "...an estimated 3.8% of the population affected, including 5.0% among adults and 5.7% among adults older than 60 years..."
Depression displays in certain patterns, such as mood changes, physical difficulties, and social isolation. However, depression manifests differently in different people and feels different to different people.
Reddit users divulged what depression felt like to them when Redditor iodineseaspray asked:
"What does depression feel like to you?"
Some of this is sure to sound familiar.
The Worst Kind Of Boredom
"Like being more bored than you could imagine but also not wanting to do anything at all, even breathe. So you want to do something, but you can't imagine anything that you would like to do so you're just sort of stuck."
"So you then spend literally hours staring at a blank wall hating yourself, your life, and everything around you. Well, as much hate as you can summon in the absolutely mentally numb state you find yourself sat in day after day."
Lack Of Motivation and Energy
"Complete lack of motivation."
"Ignoring people that I love, and who are trying to help."
"I feel it extra at work. Letting things slide until you either get into trouble or trying last minute to prevent it."
"Funny those times when I'm working to save my butt, the depression goes away and i feel super focused and motivated."
"I try to carry that energy over but no, it's rinse and repeat."
"Insecure about absolutely everything, no hope for the future, dissociation from society and not knowing how to “act” anymore, feeling like I’m not as good at the things I always thought I was good at or that the “talent is wasted on me”, only food cheers me up and sometimes even that doesn’t work"
Loss Of Creativity
"This. It's like some numb fuzziness you feel in your brain. It's the worst thing ever for an artist who just wants to create but your brain comes up dry with a dense fog that wants to just lie down for a few hours"
A Mental Inability To Breathe
"For me, it feels like I’m in a lake with a ball chain tied to my feet, desperately swimming up for air, the only problem is the chain isn’t long enough. I can only get an inch of my head out of the water to breath, and as soon as a high tide comes, the water just floods over me and I feel like I can’t breath again. I live like this, constantly feeling like I’m struggling to breathe, weighed down by my own mind. It’s a struggle and I can’t really describe it in any other way, I’m jealous of people who don’t worry about depression"
"Like suffocating under a heavy cloak"
"Like being crushed. Like if the air was crushing my muscles and bones and I can’t breathe because I’m being crushed…"
"Kinda like that."
"Scrolling thru your steam library. Thinking you want to play something, either not settling on anything or not wanting to put the effort into the game. Going back to the scrolling."
"It feels like you're forced to play a game of Monopoly (represents life) and your just rolling the dice to appease everyone but you genuinely don't care about where you go, where you land, what you pick up, what you pay, what you gain."
"You kind of just watch it happen without interest and while people are cheering or oh no-ing for you, you genuinely don't care. Everyone is a piece on this board that hardly matters and you feel like we're all just running in a circle over and over again and it's boring and disinteresting as hell."
"You lose all curiosity for everything and just let everything happen and pass by you. No motivation, hardly any love, hardly any care. Feels like the world is in black and white and your waiting for the game to end became it's so absolutely boring and disinteresting, but it never does."
"You come to resent the game and eventually hate it because it feels like you're being forced to play it and suffer it's consequences when you never asked to play it in the first place."
"That's what depression felt like for me. Since then I've been medicated and recieved therapy. I'm doing a lot better now and I don't feel this way anymore, thankfully."
A Relation To Fantasy
"You know that scene in the Lord of the Rings where Bilbo is describing to Galndalf what having the Ring all those years felt like? "I feel thin. Like too much jam spread over too much bread." That's honestly the best way I've seen to describe it."
"I always say the closest thing to compare it to is a dementor in harry potter. It sucks every ounce of happiness out of you until there is only darkness left."
"Side note: chocolate always helps"
Fear Of Lack Of Justification
"Like someone close to you died yesterday. Expect no one has, and nothing has happened to justify how you feel."
A Physical Pain
"Physical pain in my heart, will start crying just by attending to the physical sensation in my body."
"I've always described it as having a shadow fixed to your brain which fuels things like indecision and negativity. You can do things to temporarily help but you can't truly shift it. Previous normality is forgotten. But it's amazing how much you can mask it."
"I found I didn't realise how bad I was until I started to get better"
"For anyone suffering with depression. Please, please speak to someone. Best thing I ever did"
Depression isn't something you can just deal with or get over. Learning to cope is not easy. However, as Redditor DavosLostFingers pointed out, talking to someone can literally save your life.
If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression, contact the American Psychological Association by phone at 800.374.2721 or 202.336.5500.
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