You don't need to have children to be successful, but gender roles and societal expectations are awful. Just ask any woman you know: Chances are she's been poked and prodded and interrogated over her decision not to have children.
But life goes on and it's full of surprises, as we were so kindly reminded after Redditor Tera711 asked the online community: "Women of Reddit who didn't want to but ended up having kids, what was your experience like?"
"I'm the daughter..."
I'm the daughter of a mother who didn't really want kids or think she'd have them due to the possibility of an inherited disability. Long story short my parents saw a geneticist who said as long as they had kids before a certain age the risk was lower so they went ahead and had my sister and I as my Dad did want kids (although to be honest he just liked the idea of kids rather than the actual raising & responsibility of them). My mum used to tell me she felt cheated having us as we didn't fit into her plans or have the same interests as her.
I think that people need to realise that the kids have no choice in this matter once they are born and I hate that my relationship with my parents is so poor because we weren't really wanted.
"I didn't want kids..."
I didn't want kids, my ex husband did. We had 2. He asked for a divorce 8 months into my second pregnancy. It's way harder than I ever thought it would be. And I love my kids, I couldn't imagine my life without them now. But I still dream about what I wanted to be doing.. or how I can do something with small humans. It slowed down my career, it put major investment opportunities in hold. The sacrifice is underrepresented, far more than I could ever tell you. It's not the worst, worst thing. But if you don't want kids, don't change your mind for someone else.
"I love them as people..."
Oh, not good.
I love them as people, they are my family, they will have happy lives and I will protect them to the death...but I don't enjoy being a mother. I don't identify with it. I have to make sure I have a significant sense of self in my life outside of my time with them. I was young, and think I wanted the experience of being pregnant without what came next.
This is compounded by having two children with special needs, no doubt. When circumstances collide... I have to say no to a work trip, childcare falls through, etc, the sense of sadness and panic of the reality of being tethered to this role, forever, is... Overwhelming.
"And I'm so happy..."
Was always very firm I didn't want children. Not maternal at all. Got pregnant at 21 and had a daughter. I love her more than anything and I think I'm a good mum, but I don't think my life is somehow magically better for having her. I think I would have been equally happy without her. And I'm so happy that now she's 11, my time of active parenting is getting less. I will absolutely never have any more... I'm old enough to recognise I'm too selfish now. My views may be skewed because I've done it all alone, and that's not something I'd ever risk again.
"I always said..."
I always said I never wanted kids, but my husband and I decided to have one. I only said yes because he's the only person I could imagine doing that with and I honestly believed if I didn't, I would regret it when I was older.
Our daughter is almost 3 now and I had no idea I could love, and hate someone so much in my life. No matter how hard days have been with her (she's strong willed and hell bent all the time and is pretty much allergic to sleep), I have small moments with her that make my entire soul happy.
I hate having to live so much of my life for her because it can be overwhelming at times, but I never feel like I regret it. I literally cannot imagine what life would be without feeling her fall asleep in my arms, or seeing her face when she wakes up and sees me, or when she just kisses me and tells me she loves me for no reason.
I'm not a helicopter parent, I likely let her get away with too much, but she's a sweet kid who wants to take care of everyone around her, who just happens to have a raging attitude just like me.
10/10 would do again if I went back in time.
"A year later..."Giphy
I originally DID want kids. But then I had a nephew and decided I didn't want to be a mom. Being an aunt better suited me and I was totally in love with being one.
A year later I found myself pregnant unexpectedly. My birth control failed and my boyfriend and I had only been together for a couple of months. It was a whirlwind of emotions. But now we are a very happy little family living under one roof with our nine month old.
She is SOMETHING ELSE sometimes. She was an incredibly difficult baby- nothing like my nephew. I admit, there are times when I resent her and I feel like she's taking too much from me. But I can't imagine life without her now. And my boyfriend, who never wanted kids, is smitten with her. He texted me this morning "she sure grows on ya, doesn't she?"
"I didn't want..."
I didn't want to have kids even after meeting my ex husband. He had a daughter and even though I grew to love her I was terrified of the lifelong responsibility but getting to know my SD made me want a little one on my own. I have two now, 9 and 5 and another one on the way with my new partner.
Piece of advice though, which I noticed a lot of people do, my ex husband urged me to stay together for the kids so they wouldn't have to deal with a broken family, never have and/or stay with a partner because of your kids, with having them you have to sacrifice some parts of yourself but definitely not that. Children are ungrateful and they leave in the end, give to them as much as you can without sacrificing yourself too much. We are important too.
"I am now divorced..."
I know having kids was absolutely not for me. I always said I never wanted kids, but the guy I married did. Everyone told me how I would change my mind and how I would fall absolutely in love once I had one. So I ignored my instincts and trusted everyone else and had a kid.
I am now divorced and share custody of my son. If I'm being honest, the shared custody is what keeps me sane. I could not do this everyday. Being a mom, especially to a baby or toddler, is pure hell. I don't know why anyone would sign up for that, like ever. Don't even get me started on how people have more than one?!
But the silver lining is, it does get better as they get older. It gets easier. And honestly, everything everyone said is true. I love my kid more than life itself. I would do anything to make him happy. I love him more than I love myself. Still doesn't make me love being a mom though.
"I would have been better off..."
Not good. I had a lot of regret and rage for years. I don't recommend it if you're not 100%, or close to it.
I would have been better off never having had a kid. I dealt with it the best I could, because there's no going back and why make the kid suffer too.
"I met my wife..."
I didn't want any. I now have 5.
I met my wife and she had one. The kid was cool and I figured we could do one more and I liked the idea of pregnancy. Then we adopted two siblings. Then we got a call about another baby in need of a home.
I mostly didn't want kids because I accepted it wasn't going to happen. I'm glad it did.
"I was on the fence..."
I was on the fence, leaning towards not having them.
He's the best part of my life. It's hard and frustrating and exhausting sometimes, but so worth it. He's only 6 months old and I can't imagine not having him, he made our little family complete and I'm so excited for the adventures we're going to have. I am so, so, so glad we had him and have not regretted my decision for a second.
We got really lucky to have a "unicorn baby"- he sleeps well, is perfectly healthy, and very rarely fusses or cries. I think his disposition has gone a long way in helping me enjoy parenthood, but I'd love the shit out of him either way.
But I also don't think I'd have regretted not having kids. I can't imagine life without him now, but I think i could've been perfectly happy and fulfilled being childfree too.
"I did not want kids..."
I did not want kids, got pregnant at 17. Mother at 18. Stepmother at 38. So, now have two fully grown adult children. One married, one in college. I don't regret it as in, I LOVE both of them.
However, if I had it to do over again, I would make different life choices. That's the thing, right? We have this capacity to find the good and make the best of any situation even if it wasn't our first choice. But knowing what I have, I wouldn't give it up. If I had a do-over and got pregnant/didn't abort, I still would have kept the baby rather than adopt. But, if the do-over allowed me to NOT get pregnant, I'd choose that. It was really difficult for so many reasons.
All of that said, I've never been happier than I am now. My husband and I moved across the country, finally bought a house, and are both where we want to be. It took a lifetime, literally... but I'm finally here and finally at peace.
Having children is difficult under the best of circumstances. I feel that it was made easier for me for a lot of reasons. I had good family support. And having one "kid" at a time made things much easier. I knew my stepchild since birth but did not live w/get married to their father until they were in middle school. So, I didn't have to really do two "babies."
When I got married, my in-laws started in with the "when are you having a baby!?" stuff and I firmly said NO. Only pets from here on out. Truthfully, getting pregnant is one of my biggest fears. At this point in my life, I would be literally DEVASTATED to have to go through it all again. It's sort of up there with being buried alive. But I don't hate kids. I find other people's children to often be a wonderful source of joy. It's just not for me. I'm very happy being an aunt to 8.
"She developed some severe behavior issues..."
Sometimes yes and others not. Kid's dad ended up being basically useless, though I chalk that up to me being young and dumb and making a young dumb choice. She is wonderful. She was diagnosed with epilepsy at age 11 and it's not fully controlled so that's been hard. Luckily she doesn't have too many of the big kinds of seizures. She developed some severe behavior issues in adolescence and is now 16 and was just diagnosed with borderline personality disorder at the all girls residential psychiatric facility (think pool, chef, etc) I checked her in to to get her. I love her so so much. I am also terrified of when she comes home that she will upend my life again. It's finally been a quiet, stable six weeks with no surprises happening except one, and someone else handled that. I don't want her back. Not like this. Only because I can't handle it. I literally cannot work because of the impacts on me and there's no one to support me. I'm fucked, at least for a while. There are many wonderful days I've thought to myself how glad I am I had her, and others (even more recently) where I regret ever having a kid.
It's such a roll of the dice and you've no control over what you get. I don't think most people ask themselves if they're ready for these kinds of tragic and difficult situations - disease? Disability? Personality disorder? Illness? Something that makes them be a caregiver for the rest of their lives?
"I never wanted kids..."
I never wanted kids, but here I am with a 4 month old. I got pregnant, and everything inside me screamed not to abort. I had a fear of giving birth, it was actually my main reason for not wanting kids of my own, I didn't want to give vaginal birth. But I did. All the midwives and doctors told me it would be ok, my downstairs would return to normal. It might be, but this feeling I'm stuck with. I feel like I'm less worth as a person.
I love my baby, I'm glad I had him, because a world without him would be worse. He is such a happy baby, he constantly smiles and laughs and "talks". But I had him at the cost of being okay with myself.
"I was so sick."
I didn't want children, and I got pregnant not long after my first year of marriage. I was careful with my birth control, but I learned later that my migraine medication lowered the effectiveness of the pill.
I was so sick. I had to be put on special medication to stop me from throwing up, as I was vomiting upwards of 9 times a day. I couldn't eat anything. I wasn't sleeping, my headaches were awful since I couldn't take my medication. I'm a special education teacher, and someone always had to be covering my room so I could leave and throw up.
About since six months in we learned I had pre-eclampsia. My blood pressure was just out of control and some of my organs were starting to struggle. I was put on bed rest for a month and my mom had to come stay with me so my husband could continue working. He was calling every hour to check on me, and I was scared and still getting sick.
I was induced a month early, and I truly don't remember much. They over estimated how much anti-seizure medication I would need and I was confused and disoriented for most of the day.
I absolutely had PPD afterwards. I just shut down. I took care of our son, and that was it. I never neglected him, or was unkind to him, I fed him, changed him, rocked him, even sang and cuddled him, but I didn't care. My body was going through the actions and my mind was somewhere else. I would stand in the shower for hours and cry until the water was cold enough that it hurt to breathe. I would just sit and stare out the window or lay down in bed and look at a book without turning the page. I wasn't existing. I didn't talk to my friends or my husband. I didn't do anything. I scared my husband to death. I thought a lot about how easy it would be to drive my car into a tree or off a bridge. To take too many painkillers or leave the car on in the garage. I didn't want to be here anymore.
We couldn't afford for me to go to a therapist, and I never let anything out to let my husband know how bad I was spiraling. I don't know what got me out of it. Time, I guess. Rhythm, having a pattern that I followed everyday. My son getting older and gaining a personality. The consistency of my husband.
I learned my lesson though. When my son was two, I had had an IUD in since he was born. My husband had a vasectomy scheduled. And I had that same feeling, and I just knew. I took a pregnancy test, and I was pregnant again. I didn't sleep until I had an appointment at Planned Parenthood.
I was only five weeks along, but terminating the pregnancy was the beat decision I could have made. I know in my heart that if I would have kept it, and gone through another 8 months, I would have killed myself before it was over. I just couldn't do it again.
I love my son, he is three, hilarious, smart, and very very kind. He looks like his dad and his best friend is my mom. He loves our cat more than anyone and when he grows up he wants to be Elasti-girl from the Incredibles. He demands cuddles and we read a pile of books every night. He tells me I'm his princess, and I love him with all my heart.
I am a different person than I was before I had him. I miss the life I had before. I'm not going to say that I don't wish I couldn't change things. But that doesn't mean I don't love my son. This isn't the life I wanted or imagined, but it is mine, and it makes me happy.
"I never wanted children..."
I never wanted children because I didn't want the responsibility of taken care of a little person. It scared me more than anything. I got pregnant on accident and had my son and he is by far the best thing that could have happened. I loved being a mom so much we tried for more but sadly I miscarried multiple times. So he's my only one. The pregnancy for him was high risk, it was tough. He's my little miracle. I wouldn't change a thing.
"I wanted to be..."
I never wanted kids. Never wanted to get married. I wanted to be a sociologist in the Congo or something lol. 2 kids and 2 divorces later I've reconciled myself to the fact that I have no dreams anymore and my life and happiness is about the kids. I'm happy now but it took me a long time to be at peace with that.
When you go on a job interview, the last thing you probably never think about is asking a question.
But we should also be prepared and ready to ask the right questions to have a leg up on the competition.
"What is THE best question to ask on a job interview?"
A company's history or information about a past employee were suggested subjects appropriate for questioning.
"When you were interviewing here, what would you have liked to know before you joined?"
"This worked for me. I asked my interviewer a question about how she had personally dealt with a company policy she had just explained. She bragged about her stellar adherence to the policy. I nodded my approval. I got the job."
A Previous Employee
"One that has always gone over well for me:"
"What were some qualities that the previous employee in this role brought to the job that you would like to see carried forward?"
"Another good thing to do is research the company you are interviewing with and you can ask things about what they may be involved in or you could drop that while reading about the company, you wondered this."
Hypothetical questions were suggested as helpful examples of inquiry.
Indicators Of How Companies Treat Employees
"A question that landed me a job once was: 'If I asked your direct reports about your management style, what do you think they'd tell me?' Stumped a hiring manager and he emailed me personally to tell me about it, no one ever asked him that question but got the job.
"In my current interviews I'm asking 'what did your company do for its employees during [the virus] to improve their day to day, work life balance, etc.' and I ask 'Is there anything your company adopted during [the virus] that they plan to keep post [the virus]?"
"These questions give a lot of insight into whether a company treated their employees well."
Past Performance & Adjustments
"If we were currently sitting in my 1 year review, what would I have done in this year for you to say I excelled in my role?"
"If I could snap my finger right now and change anything about your job or the company, what would it be and why?"
The following questions about a prospective company may not be answered from initial digging on their website.
Measure Of Success & Career Trajectories
"How is success measured in this role?"
"What are some possible career trajectories within the company that could stem from this position?"
Being A Solution
"Ask them what is the biggest problem you can solve for them in your first six months with the company. Similar to 'don't think of a purple hippo,' this forces them to imagine you succeeding in the position."
"What do you like best about working here?"
Simply The Best
"Who is your best employee and why is he/she the best?"
"You will then face 2 situations mostly:"
"panicking CEO who can't answer you 'Bob who works 17 hours a day for a slice of bread' so the fear in their faces must be a big nono for you"
"entusiast CEO who actually follow their business and can tell you who is an added value for the company and why."
My experiences with job interviews are different than others seeking work in office environments.
Having had a years-long career as a dancer, my "interview" was the dance audition, where hopefuls dance in small groups of people at a time after learning a routine and then awaiting their fate after the panel evaluates their performances.
The question I may or may not have asked in such a scenario earlier in my career was: "Did I make the cut?"
I did not make the cut. And I learned never to ask that again.
I have a few wealthy friends and I've seen a thing or two that has made my eyes pop out of my head. Let's just say that the priorities of a wealthy person and a dude who has never broken six figures are entirely different. But that doesn't compare to working for the fabulously rich. A friend of mine was a nanny for a super rich family for several years and described the lavish trips she took with them (and how picky and out of touch they were, too).
People told us their own stories after Redditor NeighborhoodTrolley asked the online community,
"People who cater to the super rich: What things have you seen?"
"It is so wide..."
"My dad's client bought a whole block of houses to build theirs. It is so wide that they installed a moving walkway like the ones at airports."
"A friend did some work..."
"A friend did some work on Sylvester Stallone's home. Apparently, there's a ton of statues and art of himself, some of which are naked and very well endowed."
Guess what, guys? It's not a joke! Those statues are weird.
Here you go: You're welcome.
"A friend from high school..."
"A friend from high school worked a few years as a deckhand on yachts in the Mediterranean and he said he once jumped in to get a customer's bag and got tipped €4000.
"Was a boyfriend of a girl from an obscenely rich family. The sister used to have the nanny (who was sleeping with the husband, but that's another story) fly to Paris in their G550 to buy the newest Hermès bag so she could show it off a few days before it went on sale in the U.S."
I did know a rich girl who would do something similar: She would fly to Paris for Fashion Week to get cute new outfits before they ever ended up in the United States.
"I used to work for a company that modified aircraft for really rich people. I'm talking 747s, not Gulfstreams.
This company had made several aircraft for this one customer, who I was told had purchased a new one solely because his spiritual advisor had told him that one of his current planes was bad luck. He still let his wife use it for her personal travel.
To me, one of the most exquisite features of these planes wasn't the gold-plated everything, or rare wood veneers, it was the silk carpet. That stuff costs over $1,000 per square foot and feels like walking on a bed of angel feathers harvested in the most inhumane way possible. Granted, these guys don't deck out the whole plane, just their personal areas (the aft third is usually reserved for staff and such and is more like a fancy economy class), but yeah… silk carpet."
"A woman who owned..."
"A woman who owned a small private jet business told me one time someone paid them to fly their dog (by itself) to NY for about $45,000 for some training. No other passengers."
The service that dog received must have been stupendous... but that's also so wasteful, I just can't get over it!
"I became personal friends..."
"I became personal friends with my boss and his wife; super nice people. The wife turned out to be an heiress and would buy me whatever I mentioned, like in passing during a conversation. I learned gifts were how she was raised to show love.
I've trained myself to only talk about things I already own unless I find something useful she might like and suggest it for her."
"Have the money to support their eccentricity.
One guy I cook for wanted his house built so that his bedroom was right above the cow barn, with a retractable spot in the floor so he could fall asleep listening to (and smelling, I presume) the cows."
Smelling the cows?
Are we certain he ever smelled a cow? Because I've been on a farm and I have and it's a terrible smell.
Would not recommend.
"I am an art student..."
"I am an art student working as a gardener. We work in one of the wealthiest areas in my country. Some customers are really eager to show me their collection of artworks that they have hanging on their walls once they find out that I study it.
I remember one time standing in a bathroom, with my dirty gardening clothes and there was a Picasso above the toilet."
"Once saw him..."
"I used to 'work' for an Arab billionaire's son, a Daddy's money guy, terrible garbage human being.
Once saw him spend $16 000 on a wallet, was a fancy one with little gold spikes on it and stuff. He had shoes with gold on them.
I remember one year for his birthday he received like 30+ cakes, big fancy cakes and he told us to leave them on the floor in the hallway outside his room.
We walked by those cakes every day for two weeks waiting for instruction, after the two weeks we were told to throw them away."
Anyway... might as well ask: Any of you rich people out there looking for a poor friend?
Need a houseboy?
Or just someone whose bills you can pay?
I'm totes available.
Have some stories of your own? Feel free to tell us all about them in the comments below!
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Oh the matters of the heart are just never going to be easy. Love seems to be a never ending mess. I've dated a lot and can attest that the percentage of bad to good is 70/30. And that may be generous math.
I've heard about people fighting on dates, setting fire to the restaurant, discovering hidden identities and dramas I thought only ever occurred on daytime television.
I use to believe the biggest fear about dating was that the other person may turn out to be a serial killer, but they at least tend to show you a respectable time before they strike.
Oof. Let's see who has been left scarred by the hunt.
Redditor u/givemeyourfreefood wanted everyone to share the stories that almost made them re-think searching for love, by asking:
What's the worst date you ever had?
I remember the worst date I ever had. My biggest regret is that I stayed for the entire thing. I should've left as soon as I realized this was not going well, which was basically at hello. But he was paying so I drank, a lot. I'll keep names and dates to myself to protect the innocent.
0/10Big Brother Reaction GIF by Big Brother After DarkGiphy
"Went to brewery, date said I had hairy arms and that meant I was horny, said "you look really awful in this light" and then tried to dig out of that hole by saying in his native language that was a term of endearment long term couples said to each other. 0/10 did not date again."
"My wife wanted to plan our 13th wedding anniversary. I was excited because usually, I plan it. She bought us some new disc golf discs and after a quick supper, we went to play. We hadn't played in forever. We were laughing and I had a great time. She served me with divorce papers and told me that the date was a test to see if she still had feelings for me. I also learned that she was having an affair that started well before our anniversary."
Two Hours from Home
"Not necessarily a date but a person I was dating invited me to his parent's house for the afternoon. He wanted to introduce me to them and show me the house he grew up in. I thought it was super sweet and had no problems going. He was also in the middle of moving and needed to pick up a few things, so it really didn't seem that unusual."
"Yeah, we got there and it was awful. His entire family was there. They traveled from hours away too. This was not just meeting the parents, it was meeting the ENTIRE family. Even worse? At some point, this idiot told his parents that he had proposed. We had been dating TWO months. I spent the entire afternoon dumbfounded and just playing along."
"We were two hours from home and I had no cell service, no way to leave at all. We ended up spending the afternoon brainstorming wedding ideas and planning an Alaskan honeymoon that his parents planned to gift us. His brother even called to say congratulations! We drove back to his apartment in silence. When we got there, I got in my car and left, didn't even bother grabbing my stuff. Weirdest experience ever. I have no idea how he broke it to his parents that we weren't getting married."
You're Cut Off!
"Got set up on a blind date once between mutual friends. She shows up to the restaurant already a little tipsy, orders multiple appetizers and only takes like one or two bites from each one. Then she proceeds to order 3 or 4 more drinks and is visibly drunk at this point. She gets up and says she's going to the bathroom and staggers off. About 15-20 minutes go by so I try to call her several times but no answer."
"Finally I decide to pay the check and just leave. About 2 hours later I'm sitting at home and I get a call from an unknown number. It's the police department. She was picked up on a DUI on her way home after she ditched me and gave the cops my number to see if I could go bail her out!"
Sorry?Bbc Three Idk GIF by BBCGiphy
"Well, I gave this answer on a different topic, but it ties in with this. We were out on a date, we had been seeing each other for a while, close to a year maybe. She gets a phone call. Suddenly she looks destroyed. Her fiancé had just died in a motorcycle accident."
What in the world? I mean how can we ever expect to pair off with the dating pool being inundated with liars and nut jobs? I'm going to delete my apps.
Girl, Bye.Sassy Beyonce GIFGiphy
"Had a girl openly flirt with the bartender in front of me. She says she wasn't. But handing him her own phone and asking for his contact info in front of her date seems like it to me."
"Came out from a movie, late at night, and date's Camaro was stolen. Apparently, he called his WIFE (that I did not know he had) and let her know where he was and what happened. She showed up and realized he was on a date! She started chasing ME around the parking lot telling me she was going to kill me. Saved by the cops who showed up just in time to take the auto theft report."
"Met a girl at a country bar one night in my 20s. We were both pretty drunk but hit it off pretty good. Ended up getting her number and we agreed we'd go on a real date. Fast forward to the date, she gets in my vehicle and... she looks almost identical to my mom. I was mortified. I was polite and we went for lunch where I found out she also had a boyfriend she "wasn't sure if she was into". Never talked to her again."
"When I was in college many years ago, before the advancement of cell phones and social media, I was chatting with a girl I met on a BBS who lived on Long Island, NY. I was 18 at the time, but lied and said I was 22 because she said she was 25. We spent a few weeks emailing each other, as well as calling each other."
"We even exchanged pics. When we finally met up, things blew up. Turns out we both lied about our ages: She was really 33, and lied because she thought she looked younger. She admitted she sent a college photo to me. We still had dinner together, but it was awkward as hell. We never spoke again."
DoublesKill Me Now Season 1 GIF by FriendsGiphy
"It was a double date. She was more interested talking to the other girl throughout the whole thing. Found out later from the other guy that his girl cheated on him with my date."
Ummm... I think I'm just going to stay single. That is a handful of crazy. Why can't people just be honest? I swear the search for love warps people's brains. Be careful out there people.
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As much as we'd like to assume spirits, ghosts, and paranormal happenings are relegated to movies and books, plenty of real-life stories abound.
Inexplicable sightings, things heard, and cold pockets of air are encountered by plenty of people all the time.
It's up to you if you want to believe them. But it's hard to argue with the conviction of the contributors to a recent Reddit thread.
Redditor ihadanightmarewithu asked:
"What is the scariest / paranormal story you have ever experienced?"
Many people talked about the things that caught their eye once upon a time.
Two Places At Once
"I was staying with a group of friends rock climbing in Spain. Really creepy air bnb, lots of strange things happened while we were staying there. The creepiest was one morning we were getting ready for the day, packing food and generally getting our things together, and I went upstairs to grab something."
"As I was heading back downstairs I walked past my friend's boyfriend on the landing and saw him turn and go into his and my friend's room; I think I asked him something but he didn't reply. I thought 'rude' and headed downstairs."
"Walked into the kitchen and he was there sorting food out with my friend."
"Everyone swore he'd been downstairs the whole time, plus there was only one staircase and it would have been impossible for him to overtake me and get to the kitchen before me without me noticing. I went back upstairs and checked their room and there was no one up there but me."
"I've never experienced anything creepy or inexplicable before we stayed in that air bnb and I'd say I'm v. sceptical about supernatural/paranormal stuff but multiple things happened on that trip that spooked me."
"A floating head."
"I was putting beef in the slow cooker because I wanted it done for morning, it was late at night. I reached up to grab some seasonings, and heard creaking. I told my kids to get in bed."
"I see something out of my peripheral vision and there was no body but a head of a bald, pale man floating 3 1/2 maybe 4 feet off the ground in the middle of the floor. It's face kept looking as if it was sad, or like it was begging. It locked eyes with me....I froze."
"I had a darker wall, with a coat rack with my husbands work jackets so it stood out like a store thumb. I looked away thinking it was my imagination but when I looked back it was still there so I ran out the back door because I'd have to pass it to get upstairs with my husband and kids."
"I ended up calling him on my phone to come walk me in. I was wide awake, not sleepy, not out of it, on no medication. I have no reason to see that ever."
Presences, Seen and Felt
"When I was a kid my mom took my sister and I on vacation. I only remember this happening one night while we were there but the hotel we stayed at was pretty much all flats with one bedroom. I slept in the bed with my mom and my sister was on the pull out sofa. I can't remember if I was trying to go to sleep or woke up in the night to this but I just know everyone else was asleep."
"It was really dark with just a little light from the street outside coming in on the sides of the curtains. On each side of the bed stood a black silhouette and it felt like they were all staring right at me acknowledging their presence. I didn't feel threatened or afraid of them at all and turned on the bedside light and not surprisingly nobody was there."
"I turned the light back off and there they were still in the same positions. I just looked at them for a while but must have eventually fell asleep. The only other detail of that experience I remember is waking up the next day and mentioning it at breakfast and my sister saying she felt like she was being watched the whole night. I have no explanation for it but it's a memory that has stuck with me over many years now."
"One time I was going home in my car and saw a guy that appeared to have no arms no hair and a longa** neck in a JUST a hoodie no pants no underwear trying to climb a tree in the woods with their legs and idk know if that's paranormal but it was such a fu**ing weird experience that I think it qualifies"
For others, it was all about the things they heard.
"This is something I've never been able to rationalize."
"For months after my dad died, we were getting landline calls where no one would answer on the other end. This was in 2002, so, while robo callers were a thing, it definitely wasn't as prevalent as it is today, but we did assume they were probably wrong numbers or something. (We didn't have any phones that displayed caller id at the time.)"
"Well, one time, after getting yet another call with only silence on the other end, I jokingly said, 'Dad, if that's you, call my cell phone.' "
"I want to preface this by saying I rarely ever got calls on my cell phone, and never spam calls in those days. I was 18 with an unlisted number that only my family and a few friends had."
"Just a few minutes later, my phone rang with a number I'd never seen before. With what I'd just said fresh in my mind, I kind of freaked out and didn't answer. I was on my way out to go somewhere with my mom, so when we got in the car, I told her what happened. We made the decision to call the number back."
"It never rang, but there was activity at the other end: muffled static and the sound of numbers being dialed slowly. It was the weirdest thing. Both my mom and I said hello, but no one ever answered."
"Has anyone ever had something like that happen to them when dialing a number? I've never had it happen before or since."
And the Crying Stopped
"About 10 years ago (I'd have been 24) I was still living with my parents. My bedroom was in the basement. One night, around 3am I was woken up to the sounds of a young child crying. It sounded like it was coming from just outside my window. I couldn't just look out the window because it was covered in ivy, so I quickly hopped out of bed to go help the kid."
"As I got closer to my bedroom door I could hear the crying was actually on the other side of the door. I opened the door. No one is there and the crying stopped. Spooked, I immediately jumped back in bed and the crying started again."
"Later that day at dinner, my family was sitting around the table and I brought up my experience I had. One of my sisters told a story about how when she was a kid she'd always leave her room at night to go sleep with my parents because she'd see a little girl walking out of her closet."
"As she left her room and got to my parents' door waiting to be let in because the door was locked she'd see the little girl walking up the stairs that were right there. After her telling this story my youngest sister looked scared and asked, 'the little girl, is she wearing a pink nightgown with shoulder-length brunette hair?' "
"Now my other sister was scared because that is exactly who she saw. My youngest sister told how she had similar experiences with that little girl coming out of the closet at night or walking up the stairs at night."
"I'm convinced that something happened either in that house before we moved in or on that land that my parents' house was built on."
Crying From Afar
"Not my story but my moms, apparently when I was just a baby I was always a calm sleeper and once when my mom was having a friend over downstairs they could hear a baby crying so they naturally went to check on me and I was still calmly asleep..."
"...but every time they went back downstairs they could hear some more crying, but apparently the crying was somehow off in a different way as well, one day when mom and dad were downstairs watching tv while I was sleeping upstairs, they heard crying and finally pinpointed the thing that was off..."
"...apparently it came from the opposite side of the house compared to my room and that room had the latch to the attic. Creepy stuff, but I'm not that surprised. This place is totally haunted in my book, I once heard my mom call me downstairs while I was home alone."
Finally, some people interacted directly with the spirits.
Advice From Beyond
"So once while I was home alone, my neighbor knocked on my door. This was when we still lived in Oklahoma, and I was homeschooled. He was bit younger then me but we still played Halo together. I was thirteen at the time."
"I let him in and we had a conversation about what I thought the afterlife would be like, and this was really odd for him. We talked for a few minutes before he decided to leave. When my parents got home they told me he had a heart attack at school and died."
One Time Only
"I once felt a hand on my face when I was sleeping. I had the covers covering my entire face and felt something push down lightly and then a bit harder."
"I was absolutely terrified and when I finally mustered up the courage to look, nothing was there. It never happened again but there have been a few times where something similar has happened."
A Very Helpful Ghost
"I was staying in the Banff Springs Hotel in 95 for a snowboard trip and I was leaving the room and forgot my jacket."
"When I remembered right at the door, I turned around to grab it from the bed where I left it and it was being held 2' above the bed like it was being being pinched by fingers."
"The moment I turned around it dropped to the bed."
"That blew my mind!"
"My GF's sister at the time was working concierge and she said there was a bell hop ghost and gave the paper story...lol It wasn't threating at all, but was crazy to see!"
Here's hoping you manage to sleep well despite all these spooky stories!
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