What is something you have always regretted doing?

What is something you have always regretted doing?


When I was 10 and my sister was 7, I wanted to go play in the snow and none of my friends were out so I invited her to play with me. She was super excited but it was going to take her a while to get her snow clothes on and I was already dressed so I said I’d wait for her out front. While waiting, a friend came by and invitee to play and I went not even thinking twice about my little sister. I came home an hour or two later to find out that she went outside and looked for me for a while and came in broken hearted because I wasn’t there. I’m in my late 40s now and while she’s never once brought this up, I think about it often and cringe and get pretty down about it. What a shit thing to do. I cannot imagine ever forgiving myself for it.


If you’re able to, you should try talking to her about it. Because you were so young, you may be beating yourself up over something that she doesn’t even remember.


Dude. Seriously. Your sister would forgive you in a heartbeat. This is not worth suffering over a moment longer. My sister beat the shit out of me a few times. I'm heading over to her place for dinner in an hour. :)


Spending 13 years shooting heroin... That was pretty shitty.. 3 years clean now though


Turning your life around after 13 long years of hard drug abuse is most impressive. Hats off to you.


Being so codependent most of my life


Dental hygiene. Had braces as a teen and neglected my teeth for the 20 years after except for yearly cleanings. Too many mountain dews and too many days of “I’ll just brush my teeth tomorrow” turned into cavities and peeling enamel. You don’t appreciate teeth not hurting until they are.


Well, thanks, because now I'm really appreciating my teeth not hurting.


As a person with both bad dental genes and bad dental hygiene from 1 to like, 27 op's comment makes me feel my teeth


I started taking immaculate care of my teeth about four years ago when I read a reddit thread titled “What is the one thing you would go back and change if you could?” So many responses about regrets with regard to oral hygiene. My routine now includes four cleanings a year plus water picking, flossing and ultrasonic twice a day. Fortunately I never drank soda so I didn’t have to contend with damage. I couldn’t be happier about the way my mouth tastes and feels every day. My life is a shit show, but I have nice teeth!


Drinking. High blood pressure = aneurysm.


"Friend" at school told me if I cut all my eyelashes off they would grow longer. They did not.


How long did they take to grow back?


A good few months from what I remember


Can confirm. Mine fell out once (alopecia) and it totally sucked for a few months. Eyebrows too.


Shit, when I was working in a kitchen with a tandoor I was slapping a piece of naan into it and some hot flour flew into my eyelashes and burned them off because I still had mascara on from the night before. I regret not taking the two minutes to wash mascara off because after this I had no eyelashes on my left eye for three months.


Taking out loans to go to a traditional 4 year university. If I knew then what I know now I would have just worked my way through community college and there's a good chance I'd be exactly in the same spot as I am now regarding my career. The biggest difference would be that I wouldn't be in debt till I die.


Staying up late like rn and bullshitting myself that tomorrow i will sleep early like i said yesterday


The struggle is real. This is me every. single. day.


Wasting my time on toxic friendships. Never again. I also regret not ending my first relationship when I first wanted to (after year 1 instead of year 8...)


I can relate to this so much. Except, I ghosted my friends since I'm not good at confrontation. And I know if I bump in to them, it's an argument waiting to happen.


I know this is a relatively small thing, but when I was around 10 and I was on public transport with my dad one time, he said he'd like to read to me. Like the little shit I was at the time, not only did I focus on playing Lego Batman on my DS as he was reading to me, but I actually *told* him I was going to do that. The audacity. I've always been lucky that he was and still is the kind of guy who doesn't take that kind of stuff personally and was totally fine with this arrangement, but I just wish I gave his gesture anywhere near the respect it deserved. I rarely even looked at him as he read.


My mom used to read to me and my siblings even well after we all learned to read, we would all get ready for bed, and then for about 30 minutes we would all pile into my parents bed and just listen and then we would all head to bed, we did Harry Potter and a few other series, but it was a nice way to wind down at night I think we did this until my little brother was in middle school. My family is pretty close.


Just give him the respect he deserves now to make up for it


I do what I can every single day


Not doing internships in the summers during law school. Instead, I went straight through and graduated in 27 months. It was a mistake that limited my ability to get a job after graduation.


An advanced degree without work experience isn't attractive to employers. Lots of people learn that the hard way. Edit: Unfortunately, the economy is pretty messed up and oftentimes finding a paying internship or job is tough. Not having the work experience is sometimes not the student's fault.


I used to do careers advice at work (law firm) for teenagers just before university and I tried to press this into them so much. Try and find work experience relevant to your desired job - whatever it is - and if that's not possible then just get any kind of job and learn how to link it to your desired field. Good legal jobs are super competitive and if you can just say "yeah I want to do law because I did work experience and liked it" that instantly boosts you above the people that haven't done it. Another thing is to do useful things while at university. Like it's so easy to just smoke weed and drink all the time and study for exams to come out with good grades but employers (and their employees) always prefer graduates who did interesting things and picked up some semi-mature social skills along the way. To bring it back to the OP question, people will always regret not properly using those few years in college. It seems like the end of the world at that age to miss out on the parties or dedicate too much time to more "professional" stuff but there are at least 30 more years of working life after that so set a good foundation... Also network and don't be shy, your old college pals will get you jobs in the future. You'll always regret not talking to that one guy but you'll mostly forget the socially awkward moments.


When my parents split up my mom had to raise us by herself and we were really poor. Eventually we had to get on food stamps to survive. My mom was devestated. She was a very proud woman and was working two jobs but it wasn’t enough and it absolutely crushed her to have to get assistance, it made her feel like a failure who couldn’t take care of her own kids. I remember we were in the grocery store and getting ready to pay. She was going to use food stamps to pay and she was so ashamed that she turned to me and said “If you don’t want to stand in line with me you don’t have to”. She was trying to spare me the embarrassment. So I didn’t stand with her, I went off and looked at a toy or something. I remember looking back at her, she was sheepishly fixing her hair and trying not to look “poor” as she worked up the courage to face the cashier. I have regretted walking away so many times over the years. I was just a kid, but I wish I could go back in time to go stand next to her and tell her how proud I am to be her son and how thankful I was for the sacrifices she made just to keep food on the table for us. It honestly breaks my heart every time I think about it.




That felt like a mom hug. Thanks for sharing!


Have you told her how proud you are to be her son lately? I think telling her how you feel would go a long way towards easing your guilt. She probably doesn't even remember the incident.


I have, and one of my main missions in life is to make sure she doesn’t go a single day without knowing it. She’s an absolute saint, I’ve never met a better person in all my life.


Sounds like she did a great job raising you, too. I bet she's very proud of you and feels lucky to have you.


Not listening to my doctors warnings and not taking care of my diabetes from 15-25. Since March last year I have had an op to restore vision in my right eye, an op to do the same in my left, an op to reattach the retina in my left eye and currently waiting to have another in my right eye to restore vision and an op to remove the silicon oil that is currently holding the retina in my left eye in place. Was completely blind for 2 months and only now have a small amount of vision in my right eye. The left eye has just enough vision for me to walk around without hurting myself until the oil comes out. Listen to your doctors kids.


My oldest brother was diagnosed with diabetes at 16. He took insulin here and there throughout the years; mostly because he couldn’t afford it all the time and he didn’t have insurance but also because he didn’t want to “be a slave to a disease”. A tiny cut in his left foot became infected and the bone underneath became gangrenous and his blood, septic. He went in for “minor” surgery to extract the small piece of bone beneath his 4th toe. Within minutes of being put under twilight anesthesia, his heart stopped. For 10 minutes CPR was performed and his heart started again. They performed the surgery and sent him to intensive care under medically induced coma. He started to get seizures constantly and the coma slowed them down as doctors tried to mitigate the damage to his brain. He didn’t wake up from the coma when they tried to take him out. He was on life support for 2 months before his heart gave out. He was 35. I miss him tremendously.


As a foot doctor... This is my nightmare. I see so many diabetic patients and I tell them the magic words are "I'm a diabetic with a wound". Those words get you seen in my office same day. And I'm never ever mad if it's a small blister or something "silly". I've seen people leave thing for a week and lose a foot. It can happen so quickly. And no surgery is without risk. I love my job but it is so sad sometimes. I am so sorry about your brother.


Thank you I appreciate it. I couldn’t carry those emotions with me daily. It takes a strong person to do your type of work. My grandma is in her 80’s and diabetic. She is religious about her foot care. She won’t even cut her own nails and never misses an appointment. I wish my brother had followed her example. The anesthesiologist who treated my brother during surgery said he’s never seen anything like that in 20 years of practice. He’d seen my brother in the pre-op area and said he looked nervous (he was alone, we were all at work including his fiancé) so he talked with him for a bit. He said he was haunted by it. They never did figure out exactly what went wrong.


Sharing health issues or personal issues with workmates.


I used to vent with my office colleagues. We ended in bad terms after I got a big raise at work. And I feel embarrassed and stupid


the other side is when you kinda ignore everyone,not because you hate them, but don't want to get involved in everyone's drama, but then they hate you and think all these crazy things about you without ever knowing you.


Looking back, it’s like why would I want to paint myself in this negative light ??


Not taking care of my teeth when I was younger.


Same. It's my biggest insecurity now. My parents never stressed the importance and stopped taking me to the dentist when I was a child. I cry about it all the time because there's no way I'd ever be able to afford the work I need done. Especially not now as I'm only 21.


I’m the same way. I’m 22 so we’re in the same boat. I hate smiling because I’m insecure about my teeth.. which is really so sad because smiling is so important


Not protecting my hearing. I'm 52 and have had tinnitus for 20 years now. I should've worn earplugs when mowing the grass, going to concerts or loud movies. I shouldn't have turn my Walkman up to 11.


How do you deal with it now. I also think I'm starting to get it, the occasional ringing in the ears. I don't want to lose my hearing


Pretty much nothing... there's no cure and your ears don't heal over time. It was very sudden. I woke up after a concert with my ears were ringing and it never went away. Now I just do the things I should have done years ago, wear earplugs and turn the volume down where I can still hear. I've gotten to where I barely notice the ringing, but I can't hear conversations clearly unless I'm looking directly at speaker. I just pretend to listen when a waitress explains the menu to me at a noisy restaurant :-)


Wow. Thank you for your story. I'm 54. Just started getting some ringing. It should be a lot worse. Concerts especially and very loud bars. The one thing that saved me was turning down my headphones. I got my first walkman in 1981. Don't turn your headphones too loud, kids. Also, once your ears adjust, turn it down even more. It will sound the same. If you don't, It will fuck you up.


Also…get some good headphones…preferably noise cancelling if you frequent loud places….like Sony xm4, Bose quiet comforts, etc. Good headphones should allow you to hear details even at low volumes. If you like bass get a set tuned for bass or use an equalizer to enhance, but definitely don’t crank all the volume just to get a little more bass. Edit: active noise canceling might be bad for long term use so buyer beware. (You can also just turn it off most of the time…those cans I listed still sounded great without it.)


Have you had your hearing tested? That very much describes EVERY patient I see daily who ends up having hearing loss. Can’t hear in restaurants, can’t understand the TV (especially if the actor has an accent), usually ringing in the ears. As your hearing starts to decline, your brain no longer gets the input it did when you had normal hearing. As a result, the brain starts making up sound to compensate for the lack of input/stimulation: that’s the tinnitus. Hearing aids can help with tinnitus, but no, they don’t usually cure it for most people. The goal being that because they’re boosting up the volume on sounds you don’t hear so well naturally, you are reintroducing that sound to the brain. If the hearing aids aren’t enough to reduce the tinnitus alone, many of them have “maskers” that your audiologist can activate to blend with the tinnitus and make it less noticeable.


For all the folks reading this post. Apart from being a little bass heavy musicians ear plugs will let you hear everything clearly at concerts, clubs etc. just at a lower, 'safer' volume. They come as custom molded or generic. Also in ear monitors with a good seal can block out sound from your environment allowing you to listen at a lower volume. The trick there is having the discipline to keep the volume reasonable. Also keep in mind hearing damage is often caused not only by high volume exposure but also by how long you are exposed. U.K. has a lot of regulation about time and volume exposure especially in the workplace. Recording engineers often wear devices to track the volume over time. source: recording engineer who has too many friends with bad hearing. Be careful and hopefully these tips help.


Quit a college program for a girl. Just stopped showing. It wrecked my grades and took forever to be complete my degree after


One of my friends has recently left a dream job in a country which they loved to be with their partner. I can see some resentment and possible end of this relationship.


Its the worst... at that age, and it being my first serious/true love, I felt like nothing else mattered in the end. I couldn’t have been more wrong


My biggest regret in life was turning down a scholarship to undertake an exchange program in Sweden - because I'd been dating my current boyfriend for a year and didn't want to test the relationship via long distance. It wasn't the reason we broke up, and I don't resent him for it now, but I'll always kick myself for that decision.


Had a lump on my neck that ignored for a year. Ended up being stage 4 cancer. 13 years later and 4x battle, I’m still fighting. Edit: I love you all for the immense love you have showed for this stranger. I promise you that I’m ok and undergoing a immunotherapy that is easy as silk. I’ve been through hell but I’m here, strong and defiant. Thanks to love from strangers like you.


So...any tips on overcoming the fear? I have a lump and have been ignoring it for longer than I want to admit. Scared to death to get it checked out (what if it's bad? I have no family support. I can't pay for treatments, etc etc). The best I've been able to do is set a monthly reminder. :-(


As most doctors will tell you, prevention is far cheaper than treatment. Get it checked out. Either way, you won't regret it after the fact.


The peace of mind alone is worth getting it checked


When I was in 8th grade, I saw my 6th grade brother walking down the hallway towards me and body-slammed him as hard as I could into the wall. He limped away, ducked into an empty classroom, and started crying. I wasn’t a violent kid and was generally a pretty good big brother. Immediately afterwards I just felt so fucking bad and had no idea why I did it. We’re really close now, and I still apologize for it 15+ years later. It honestly fucking haunts me that I did something so unnecessary and cruel to my own brother.


middle school aged kids are the meanest


Just...for NO reason...


Kids can be cruel man... my cousin used to bully me when we were both in 6th grade just because and I was sooo scared of him. When we turned 18 he apologized and we’re cool now


When someone reaches out to you as a friend and you shut them down to avoid intimacy


I work at a small, retail family business (repair shop). This older guy we didn't know kept coming in to hang out with us, probably 4 or 5 times a week. We thought it was kinda weird, but we were fine with it, he'd just hang out in the back with us and talk for 30 minutes. This kept on for maybe 6 months, he kept trying to hang out with us outside of work, seemed kind of desperate. Most of us turned him down respectfully. I turned him down because I was like 25, and he was 55. He starts buying everybody really expensive gifts. He came in with a 2,000 dollar AR-15 as a present for me (I used to be into guns). I turned it down because I didn't think it was right to accept it. Most of the people there turned down his gifts. This seemed to really upset him, and he stopped coming around. About a month later, we got a call - can't remember if it was from his lawyer, family member etc. He'd had terminal cancer for the past year, and he had finally died. He'd hidden this from all of us. So, he was just trying to make new friends before he died, we mostly turned him away because we thought he was weird and desperate. Biggest regret of my life.


Holy fuck dude you just explained my last 5-10 years perfectly. I have been turning down potential friendships and sabotaging what could have been good relationships for a long time now because for some reason once people start getting a little too close to me or into me, I instantly recede and just shut them down. Its so ingrained into my being that I don't know how to change and feel like this will be the rest of my life. Its freaky.


Why do we do it






This is very relieving and thank god I’m not alone in life


It wouldn't surprise me if we were the majority


One afternoon I got mad at my mother. She had been prescribed an excess amount of narcotics. 90 days worth. For an addict like her, she'd finish that in maybe two days. I picked the prescription up and withheld it. Her doctor told me I was breaking the law, even though she was a known addict. I gave it back to her and refused to hang out that night. I'd go every night to sit with her and talk so she'd be doing something other than drugs or having shitty people over. But I was pissed off. Next morning I was off. Nothing felt right. My grandmother and I stopped by to check on her. She was dead on the kitchen floor. Her friends came over and they started doing drugs. Heroin kits everywhere, weed all over the table, and that damn bottle of pills. Her neighbor said at 2 am a bunch of people hightailed it out of there. She had OD'd and they didn't help her. They just ran. Why the fuck didn't I just go over there that night. Still bothers.me even though I know I could never stop her from being addicted. Edit: Thank you to everyone who replied. It really means a lot because when she died, my loss wasn't really acknowledged. I came from a small town in CA. There were other addicts but we always felt alone trying to help her. The community we belonged to was upper-middle class. Most folks covered the addictions of their family members up very well. I'm aware of enabling behavior and I'm sure we did that many times. We just tried to keep her from dying. It's a tough spot to be in when it's your loved one.


If love could cure addiction, nobody would be addicts. My father died an addict, so I can relate to the pain. I'm sorry for your loss


I'm sorry for your loss. It's hard to lose someone the way we did. The way they die influences how people react during funerals and wakes. I can't quite put my finger on it...but it's different and almost amplifies the loss itself. Maybe you might know what I mean, maybe not. I hope you're alright.


Wow. I am so sorry. But your mother was responsible for herself and if not that night it would have been another. You did your best.


I regret not doing a fuller investigation of career options before going to college or making the effort it would have taken to change course mid-career. I just retired from a career that was satisfying but probably not my best match.


I understand the regret but it sounds like you did well for yourself. A satisfying career is better than most people get.


As a college senior, I was an adviser to this suite of freshmen. Three of them played these stupid pranks on two of them for the entire school year. It started as jokes but it ended up just being harassment. Both of the harassed suitemates transferred the next year. I tried to reason with the three pranksters/harassers. But now, I regret not confronting them instead of trying to reason with them. At some point, if people are intentionally causing suffering, a harsh response is the correct response. I was just a dumb college 4th year but I wish I had had the insight to do more.


Marrying the wrong person. Be ***sure*** you really know who you are marrying. The family. The friends. The acquaintances. When they're angry, sad, happy. How they spend money. How they save money. Because you could end up like me - 31 years unhappily married. And we have a special needs daughter who needs us together in the same house for reasons I can't go into here. So I'm locked in, and so is she. Learn from my mistake. ​ \-------------- Wow, I was not ready for this to become so darn popular. Just sharing the truth. Someone said below "I heard once you love the SO but marry the parents." God, isn't that the truth. But in my case, it's more like fall out of love and still have to deal with the f\*\*\*ing inlaws b/c one of them lives with us (the mil died and he can't afford the rent). 4 yrs of his lame s*** living in my once beautiful basement. It's a pig style now. Our autistic daughter needs a s\*\*\*-ton level of services that amount to about $45k per yr, give or take. No insurance company reimburse b/c once you say autism in the USA, the insurance companies just say every treatment is experimental and don't cover it. Plus the wife buys into every possible snake oil "treatment" someone throws at her. We make enough money to cover those expenses, thank god, but part of the misery I live with for 15+ years is saying "we can put that money aside for our daughter for when we're gone." But I've lost that battle so many times I've given up. For about 8 years I just save money in a hidden account for my daughter. It's roughly $550k now, just gaining compound interest and by the time she's 21 it'll (hopefully) be about 1.3 million. Plus our house is paid off fully (I did that in 2020) so she'll always have a place to live. ​ Thank all of the kind redditors who stopped to read my rant. I was just trying to lend a hand to others who might be on the fence about marriage b/c of red flags.


I'm locked into a marriage where I'm miserable, too. 23 years. It's awful. I'm sorry to hear anyone else in the same situation.


I've always had this fear after being disappointed by someone I truly loved and thought I will marry. Now Ive been thinking it's better not to get married. But I hope you get fine.


I regret and dont regret this one. I was 13 at a theme park with my class. It was our last day of school so we went to a big park to ride some rides. For no particular reason (other than thinking I was funny) I kept telling kids in my class "Dont die" as they would climb onto a roller coaster. Some kids looked scared, some laughed. Finally a 20 something guy with his girlfriend also in line turned to me and shouted "Kid, shut the fuck up". his girlfriend quickly tried to calm him down and said "he's just a kid". Boy did he look pissed. For me, it was like I had been slapped out of a trance. I thought "Holy shit... Im annoying?!" best thing to ever happen to me I think. But damn do I cringe when I think about it


Dude, these slaps hit like a bus. One minute you feel great about yourself and the next you realize you're super annoying


Not everyone has those moments. Some continue to live in ignorance of their annoyance.


This is why I try to remind myself to not talk lol


Did similar shit when I was 9-11 and trying to be edgy. Every time I'd hear my parents finish talking to someone on the phone, I'd ask "so, who died?" At first they'd grit and say nobody, but after a while they got pissed and said along the lines of, "You need to stop asking that. Don't ever ask stuff like that when I'm on the phone. It's disrespectful. You don't know if someone you know will die." I think they were much harsher words than that though. It hit me like a rock and I never did it again.


Something similar to this happened at a job once. Told to me by a coworker. Our boss would frequently pull people aside and have one on ones to kinda see where everyone was (amazing boss) and one time as he was pulling someone aside, someone goes “uh oh looks like you’re getting fired” everyone laughed cause we used to joke about it frequently. Turns out the person WAS getting fired. Made for a real awkward moment when the boss told them later to not say that anymore when he pulled people aside.


When I was around that same age I just found out what the 69 sexual position was. So I asked my mom if she also knew what it was. She of course said yes. Then I followed up with “I’m glad you don’t do that!” And she got mad/uncomfortable and said she wasn’t going to discuss her sexual history with me. I was so embarrassed. I have no idea why I said that.


When I was maybe 9 years old I recited a shitty AIDS joke I heard at school (children are awful!) to my dad. "How do you spell H.I.V.?" "H.I.V." "Are you positive?" "Yes" "You're H.I.V. positive?!" He was so pissed, snapped at me and told me people are dying every day and "I can't believe you think that's funny". He skipped right past treating me like a kid and was just disgusted with me, and left the room. That definitely made an impression. Know your audience.


I thought you were about to tell us they died on the ride


If that was the case I don't think I'd start the post saying "I regret and don't regret this one", no one got hurt but me


I had something similar happen to me, but it was more along the lines of "Holy shit... I'm an asshole?" I used to play destiny with a group of guys who I only knew through the game. If you don't know, the major part people would play are specific long missions which require a lot of teamwork and in some cases leadership to get the loot. Everybody has to know what they're doing and if one person messes up then everybody dies. I usually filled the role of leader when teaching new players and even just playing normally because I thought I was good at it. Over time I stopped playing cause everybody else stopped slowly, one day I just stopped playing the game entirely. Fast forward a few years, and one of my old buddies I would play destiny with turns up in an Xbox party chat with me and we catch up. I ask him, "hey, I never asked but we never play destiny anymore... What's up with that?" And he responds... "I'm gonna be honest, we kept playing destiny. You were just REALLY unpleasant and nobody wanted to be in a lobby with you... Sorry man" Holy shit was that a slap to the face. I immediately felt insulted but after a few seconds realised exactly what he meant. If one person would mess up, even if it was a common mistake, I would scream and scream and scream at them until they felt like shit. I would make fun of people without a second thought and give anyone shit while making excuses for my own mistakes. In short, I was a cunt. I starting thinking towards the games I played currently and realised I did the same thing but to a lesser degree. I stopped doing that so quick the personality shift was noticeable to all my friends. People would play games for longer with me and my friends and I all became happier people. The things that can change when you tell someone they're a dickhead is crazy... I now stopped playing games like that entirely because I get frustrated and the last thing I want is to fall back into the habit of being an asshole. So yeah, I regret being an asshole but without that moment of realisation I wouldn't have discovered my anger issues and improved as a person....


Not following my guts post high school and falling for family's pressure


Not take my brothers pleas seriously before he killed himself on heroin... Edit: Thanks for all the support. I didnt expect to have so many people reach out.


I’m sorry for your loss, losing a sibling is one of the worst types of pain. Please try not to be so hard on yourself


Drugs and drinking all day.


Me too. Clean and sober now, but the damage is done and the consequences are for life.


Same here. Some people will only ever remember you at your worst.. I struggle with that.


Hey as someone with addicts in the family— I want to let you know, I remember a lot more than when they were at their worst. Mostly when I think of them, I think of how strong they are, how good they are, and how I am so glad that they’re still here with me.


Not spending a lot of time with my dad. He died when I was 18 and before that I was "too cool" to hang out with him much.. I regret it so much now. He technically died from kidney failure after 20+ years with a heart transplant. I ended up needing a heart transplant 2 years after he died and had no one that could relate to what I was going through.... because he was gone, and I never talked much about his transplant with him. He also never even came to my highschool graduation cause he was working so he never really got to see me accomplish anything in life. I was just a stupid teen that was too cool to hang out with my dad, even though we did so much together when I was a kid. I miss him everyday, please spend time with your parents and loved ones you never know how long they'll be there. Edit: Thank you for the awards! I am working my way through the responses, a lot have made me cry and have taken some time to answer. Thank you everyone for sharing your experiences.




Really great points you made here


About years 18-26 is all regret. I try to tell myself that if I hadn’t lived those experiences, I wouldn’t have met and married my husband, so going back to undo things if I could, would actually ruin the life I have now. Edit: I had no idea my post would resonate with so many. Thank you for the awards.


About 16-23(now) for me. I haven’t done anything. Just sitting on my ass and working in the food service industry. Finally starting college this fall so I think I’m putting myself on a better path. Edit: Thank you every one for the encouragement! Really made my weekend!


It's never too late. Especially at 23.


Same. I messed it up at 25 and still carry that regret till today. Still working on it day by day but yeah. I wouldnt have married my spouse etc if it wasnt for the mistakes i did. Its just hard dealing with ptsd.


Becoming a nicotine addict. Cigarettes almost killed me twice in one year, when I was 34.


I always thought I'd be one of those old af people still smoking. Reality had a different idea.


How exactly did they almost kill you?


I had 2 pulmonary embolisms in six months mostly caused by 50 pack years of smoking.


Is "50 pack years" equal to a pack a day for 50 years? I haven't heard it put that way before. Edit: It's been clarified that the answer is indeed "Yes." It is commonly said that way in a medical setting. It is just by chance that I personally haven't heard it before. One of those things that got past me, I suppose.


Yes. That is exactly how that works. It's how my endocrinologist explained it to me.


A dump truck full of nicotine tipped over them on the highway


Twice in the same day.


Not spending enough time with my grandma. She died young at 60 from alcoholism.


Same here, all my grandparents died before I hit the age of 12 and one of my grandpas died due to alcohol while we were on a holiday trip, leaving a letter that he was feeling lonely. But my parents did not want us kids to visit him mainly because he was constantly drunk.


drinking because he is lonely, lonely because he is drunk.


Nervous laugh. People take you less seriously.


Oh my God. I am in highschool, and this is a huge eye opener for me. I cant thank you enough.


Every single fucking decision I made between the ages of 16-19. Except getting my dog. Fuckin' love that dog.


never committing to a healthy relationship with food. now i have snowballed a full blown eating disorder and every thing i eat makes me feel guilty


I really recommend seeing a dietician for this if possible! I was struggling with exactly the same issues for a really long time and I recently started seeing a dietician. I was terrified for our first appointment because I thought she was just going to be disappointed in me for what I do and don’t eat, but instead she ended up being more of a counselor who really put healthy food relationships into perspective for me. A lot of our appointments are counseling around my food/eating insecurities with some nutritional counseling built into the conversation to help me make healthier choices for myself. I was very pleasantly surprised by this experience and would highly recommend! Editing to add an important point someone made in a reply: make sure it is a LICENSED dietician. Nutritionists and dietitians are very different, the main difference being that nutritionists are required to have many less credentials than a real, licensed dietician. Becoming a dietician requires intensive schooling that becoming a nutritionist does not.


My favourite aunt got diagnosed with liver cancer, she was hospitalised for months but I only visited a few times because it killed me seeing her so weak and full of tubes, I honestly thought she would recover but she died on the operating table and I never got to say my goodbyes.


Being too friendly with my neighbour. Now she won't respect our boundaries. I found her IN my house one morning when I got out of bed and went down to the kitchen. She's always asking us to watch her kids but like, not even asking us, just literally left her kid home alone and asked me if I could go watch her while she went to bring the other kid to school. I would have said no, but she just walked away and I wasn't about to leave a 2 year old home alone. I guess she just assumed I would do it??? We own, she owns, there's no way of putting an end to this without making things awkward.


I'll go to conferences or collections of study sessions or something, and I'll be like, "I'm going to go to x." Then, when x comes along, someone will ask me, "So, you coming to x?" And I'll be like, "sorry, but I'm busy," when I'm probably doing nothing. I always regret it. They're always really interesting sessions with people I would have wanted to meet and learn from, and what did I accomplish from not going? Nothing.


Motivation is honestly the hardest thing to obtain, I feel you completely




sorry if inapropriate, but ripped off as in, gone for good?




For anyone reading this, unless your tattoo is *insanely* small and simple, someone charging $90 for a tattoo is not going to give you a very good tattoo.


You can get a good tattoo or a cheap tattoo It won’t be both


This may sound odd , but saying yes over and over again to everything my parents want. It’s really hard for me now to say what I really want because I was always like „yeah sure mom And dad I’ll do that so you are happy“ instead of doing what made me happy Edit: I know Edits suck , but I feel less bad now. Thank you everyone. I guess we all need to go our own ways and sometimes say no


It’s not odd. My dad actually stopped offering me advice for a while because he saw that I was like that too. I’d ask his opinion about something he would just say “Do whatever you want.”


Aww that’s really good of your dad to recognize that and make a change that helps you.


I get this. If I ever said no to anything there would be screaming matches. I have a fear of saying no now.


Trying to please my parents is why at 40 I'm getting braces and need to get a dental implant. When I was in highschool I had an eye tooth coming in weird that was screwing up my front teeth, but I still had the baby tooth, so I told my parents I'd rather have the incoming adult pulled and deal with the consequences when I was older. This was all because I felt bad any time my parents spent money on me, despite the fact they were comfortably middle class. I'd go back in a heartbeat and change that one specific decision.


Giving a fuck about what other people think. It caused so much damage and got me nowhere.


Not being a better daughter to my mom before she passed away when I was 20 years old. I regret treating her badly and I feel guilt till this day.


Another one... Wasting 2 years studying for shit I hate and leaving with no qualifications. Regret I'll carry for the rest of my life 😭 Edit 1: Thanks everyone for all your wisdom and reassurances. I didn't know my comment would resonate with so many of you. It's really motivating me to go for what I really want instead of being pushed to do something I absolutely hate Edit 2: For those comments asking what I studied, I did a bachelor of science in nursing (I fucking hate nursing but I'm not dumping in anyone who likes nursing or has studied nursing or any nurses out there. I know their really important in the medical field but it just wasn't my calling) but I wasn't interested in it at all and ended up flunking and not getting the degree. What I wanted to do was dentistry (it's my ideal career, I love everything about it) and now I plan on pursuing it 👍


Same here. I wasted getting a bachelor's in psychology to only barely pass getting out of college with maybe a 2.6 GPA, so I couldn't have even gone for a Masters in anything if I wanted to, so I didn't. I made a whopping $9.50 an hour at a full time job out of college working full time. I only now make $20 at a full time job and I'm just so stuck. I hate it.


Regret not taking school more seriously and getting better grades. Regret not staying out of trouble. Regret not being smarter about money. Regret never living alone. Regret spending too much time with an ex and not enough time developing strong healthy female friendships.


There was a girl in my high school who sent her boyfriend a picture of her bare breasts. He immediately sent it to all his friends, they sent it to theirs... even teachers saw it. People started calling her Pepperoni Nipples, and I once heard my drama teacher and his assistant singing the Oscar Meyer song reworded to be about her. She was a very popular girl up til this point, a cheerleader who ran with the rich kids, and I was the kind of teenager who assumed I was an outcast (I wasn't) and that everyone was out to get me (they werent). Shortly after the nude pic event, one of our classes reassigned seating, and she and I were sat next to each other. She was so, so kind to me. Friendly. Even gave me a nickname. And she told me she went to a college party in the city, and saw her picture printed and hung on the fridge at this party. She burst into tears and left. While I never made fun of her to her face, I absolutely joined in ridiculing that girl. I just wanted to be a part of the joke, I wanted to feel like I was part of the crowd, but all I succeeded in doing was perpetuating the harm done to her, a literal child, who was being shamed and ogled by both her classmates and ACTUAL ADULTS. We are friends on Facebook now (a good 13 years later) and she seems happy, but I still think about her and feel guilty. I hope she has a lovely life, and I hope that this kind of shit never happens to anyone else.


That school needs a major staff clean out.




I don't like to say regret, because I did learn from the experience, but I got kicked out of school and sent to jail for fighting. It was day one of the Phlebotomy program.


Staying in the waiting room while my kitty was euthanized. :( EDIT: Thanks for all the kind words, and stories about your pets, and the awards. (Sorry about bringing the onion ninjas to the party!)


Hey, I’m a vet tech. Not everyone can be there, and that’s ok. Some people can’t be there because their grief is overwhelming, or because they’re not in a place to handle their emotions. Sometimes lately it’s been because of COVID restrictions. In those situations, I’m there. I’m giving treats, cuddles, kind words. I’m making sure your pet is able to pass peacefully without stress. I’m making sure they know they are loved. And if I’m not, one of my colleagues is. At any quality facility, we take our role in this process very seriously. Please don’t beat yourself up over this. We understand. Your pet understands.


Thank you so much for this. I’m a screwed up person psychologically. I know. I can’t handle it. I feel horrible about myself that I’ve not been able to be there. I literally feel like throwing up even typing this. Knowing people like you are there helps a little bit for a moment.


Oh man. This is so incredibly kind, I can’t imagine doing that on a daily basis. You truly are making the world a better place, and that’s hard to find nowadays


I just want you to know, as a vet tech, that when you aren’t there, I hold your cats like they’re my own. I pet them and tell them everything is okay. I’m sure that even though you regret it, your cat was treated with utmost respect and caring and wasn’t alone or afraid.


Can confirm this. My sisters a vet too, they always always cuddle the cats and dogs and make sure they’re comfortable. It’s a very sad part of the job, but it’s rewarding to know that an animal isn’t suffering, and is frolicking around in the big Ol field upstairs.


i didn’t expect to cry today, but it’s for a good reason. you’re doing good, painful work. thank you.


Honestly I’m about to tear up! I really didn’t except so many people to see this offhand comment. I’m glad it’s a comfort though!


this had me crying


You are a very good person.


Because of Covid protocols I couldn't be with my boy when they put him to sleep. I can still see the look in his face as they dragged him away from me. Cancer took his body, but his mind was as sharp as ever.


They were frightened but they would understand and forgive you if they could. They love you.


:((((( I remember when my dog was euthanized, My stepdad was in the way and wouldn’t let me get to her face. I wish I could’ve stayed right by her face and told her it’s OK. She was sniffing in my direction. it still breaks my heart That I had to be by her tail.


She knew that you were there, and that’s the most important part. You did good. Besides, for dogs, their back end is the most vulnerable. That’s why you may often get the stink end when you lie down together. Or the “watch me poo!” position outside, even. You had her back!


I’m not sure there is a right answer on that one. I lost two of my cats over the last 8 months and I went in with both of them. I felt like I needed to be there for them. Even though they went peacefully I still have nightmares with the memories. After my second one I almost ran out of there and had a full panic attack in the parking lot. I know for the animals who don’t have their owners, the vet does everything they can to make them feel safe and comfortable. For some, not having that memory of their last few minutes might be for the best. Hugs hun.


I feel this. My cat had to be put down and I was there with him. After he was gone I also had a panic attack in the car park, my chest was hurting so bad I thought I was having a heart attack. And whilst I don't regret being there, it was incredibly hard to watch.


My mom took my dog to get put down as I had to leave for my SAT exam so I feel that regret. Being there would have been tremendously hard as well, so you wouldn’t be off scott-free emotionally. If you gave them a good life thats all they could ask for.


Getting into debt. I can’t see a way out :( EDIT. Wow thank you for the love Reddit. Just put little one to bed and fell asleep for a few hours and woke up to 200+ notifications. I’ll try to read them all. EDIT 2. Appreciate all the advice so much. Ive joined r/ynab and r/personal finance. Due to my job I am unable to look at solutions like bankruptcy and an IVA. I will look at the other options suggested though. Thank you very much for reaching out to point me in the right direction. :)


Feel so bad for you man. Had an unexpected life situation come up this year that will actually allow me to eliminate all my debt (but the money didn't come in a happy way). Not going to go back there again. It is so easy to go there I don't blame anyone who finds themselves in over their heads.


Aw I’m sorry to hear that. Just make sure you definitely don’t do it again 👍


Consolidation. This was a life saver. Now instead of like five payments a month, I was able to get a loan that consolidated everything into one payment. ***Added to answer all the questions:*** I went through my bank of 20 years. I had never missed a payment with them and was a loyal customer. I applied for a loan online through the website and was denied. The following week, I called in and was approved within 1-2 business day. I didn't get the amount I asked for - but I got enough to pay of all my debt at the time which was only two credit cards. And I needed some dental work. Don't get a Capital One credit card. They will fuck you over with a few things. Really high membership fees which you can't opt out of. And insurance which was $89 a month! I tried canceling this and was told no. So, when I got the loan, I said fuck you C1, and stayed with my bank. Cancelled and paid off the C1 card. The terms of the agreement was a 7 year loan. It's been 3 years of making payments. I've already paid off $8,000 because about once or twice a year, I'll throw in a "lump" sum payment. This shaved off 2 years - and 2 years of interest. With being at home for the last year due to the pandemic, I also managed to build up a savings account. I was offered a line of credit and accepted it "just in case" - which I only use for emergencies. I use the cc for groceries and things online - then pay it off each month. The only reason I got into trouble was that I got sick and had to leave my job and went on EI. It doesn't pay much. I had three months where I didn't have any work due to the recession. I had to use the credit card to pay rent. Sometimes shit happens that you don't plan for. Now I'm doing okay. The loan is more than 50% paid off and my card is paid off monthly. And I have a savings account just in case something does happen. I'm not saying this solution is for everyone. But it definitely worked wonders for me. It was a life changer.


Yes I’ve done than but it’s just such a huge chunk of money each month. Only one payment though. Glad you sorted yours out x


I did the same thing. I lived lean while riding it out. Get into a mind numbing routine and exercise to make the time pass. Before you know it, everything will suddenly be okay and you can buy groceries without having to worry about how to pay for them.


Loyalty to an employer because you are expecting something that will never come.


Sending a picture of myself in a bra to some dickhead on the internet when I was 16.


Teen years are full of "why did I do this..what was I thinking" moments. Forgive your teen self, it had no idea.


As a 30yo… yes. Teen years. Those are the ones full of “why did I do this”. Hmmm.


I'm 28 and I still have moments like this every day


Every 5-6 years you are gonna look back and go, "man I was dumb as hell back then".


I’m so glad there was mostly no internet when I was a teen. Whatever I was doing on dial up, my parents would catch before I did something crazy. Younger me with a smartphone?


As an older person, I thank my lucky stars that the internet and smartphones weren't around during my teenage years. Like everyone else, I did stupid things; had immature impulses which I thought were mature; had philosophies which I thought were deep and original; totally embarrassed myself trying to connect with potential lovers, and on and on and on... All of those humiliating moments were witnessed by only a few people each time. Maybe they told a few other people at the time, but those events have long since been lost to memory. I shudder to think what my life would have been like if each of those embarrassments had been broadcast to all of my peers across the world and preserved forever on video.


Getting my Bachelor's in Fine Arts. I'm still paying for a degree I don't even use.




Once when I was 14, I was walking through my local park with some friends. This park had peacocks. As I was walking through with my friends we spotted some peacocks with their babies. My friends started throwing oranges at them, they peer pressured meeting into joining them. I pick up a dirt clog because it was smaller and intentionally threw so I would miss. Instead, I hit a baby peacock and killed it. I just froze and the baby peacocks and the parent peacocks surrounded it. I began to feel remorse that God will not let me forget. I approached the peacocks and buried it while my friends simply went on with there lives. I’m 34 and that scene still plays in my head…


I'm so sorry. That's awful.


Getting myself stuck into the job industry of retail - it’s a dead end for a career and impossible to escape.


When I was a child discovering the world in the garden, I figured it would be cool to find out what happens if you cut the eye stalks off a slug. Thought it would be a groundbreaking science experiment, turned out to be a harsh lesson in empathy.


Making my youth all about chasing fantasies. If you want a poetic sense of life, you get lies.


I'm currently stuck in that spot. Hardest part for me is finding what the point of everything is other than those fantasies.


I think the trick is to work out what part of the fantasy really appeals to you. Say you dream of being a fighter pilot. Which part is most important? Is it the uniform, the respect, the high-tech toys, the view, the freedom, the adrenaline or the competition? You might find that you're really just chasing other people's fantasy, and that the thing that motivates you is only a small part of the life you thought you wanted. Or you might find there's an alternate route to the things that will make you happy. I can think of several dreams that turned out to be major disappointments, but trying them helped me realise what I really wanted.


Getting a biology degree kept me out of buying a house for five years. Not treating my anxiety issues in college may have actually made the rest of my life worse.


Not following up and letting friendships die.


Turning down a job on the 1996 film *Trainspotting*.


Driving too fast. When i was younger i took a turn too fast and got into an accident and killed two people. I struggle to live everyday knowing the pain that my actions caused.


The worst story I ever read on Reddit was a girl who said when she was 12 she dropped a baby while she was babysitting and it died. She had to call her parents, who called the baby's parents and she has had to live with that the rest of her life. Your story is horrible as well. But the fact you acknowledge what you did is really all that you can do. Do you speak to teens about racing or anything? Anyhow, May you find peace and thanks for sharing.


Stories like that are exactly why I absolutely refuse to hold anyone's child. No way no how, it's not that I dislike kids, I just refuse to even have the possibility of a freak accident like that happening to me.


There was a time when I did not know how to break up. Interpersonal relationships is hard. It's hard to start a relationship in particular, but the hardest thing is to exit a relationship as gracefully as you can. Sometimes you can't part gracefully, and you have to be able to accept that too.


At age 7 or 8ish, after my birthday was winding down, I asked one of my dad's friends if he got me anything for my birthday. I was thanking everyone and wanted to make sure I thanked him. He said no. I felt like an asshole for asking and putting him on the spot. At age 16 or 17 I was driving in the City Market parking lot, getting ready to park and I saw a shopping cart. I decided to push it with my car for a moment, then stop and see it roll on it's own. I pushed it right into a parked car. My friends in the car were not enthused. Very embarassing moment of me acting like a jackass.


if that EVER happens to you again for some reason, hit em with the “you being here is gift enough!!!”


Started drinking.


Emotionally scarring and traumatizing one of my siblings when we were much younger... I still haven't been able to muster the strength to bring it up and apologize all these years later, and it's rotted me out from the inside every single day. Feeling cowardly, shameful, and horrified... Edit: did not expect this to get any attention. I want to thank everyone for the solid advice and kind comiserations. I don't feel comfortable going into any details of it on here though, sorry :/ I am going to do my best to get over my shame and fear and take the first steps to help start the healing process that has been so damn long overdue.


Would writing a letter of heartfelt apology work? I bet it would mean the world to him/her.


My brother did something of this sort to me (maybe not as severely as your situation) when we were young. Honestly it wasn't really his fault; he didn't know any better. To this day I don't have a great relationship with him, though I try to connect with him once in a while - I feel like between the two of us I grew up more well-adjusted, so I'd like to help him too. But I sometimes wonder if he knows how he made me feel when we were younger. And I'd definitely love just a little bit of acknowledgement or apology. Don't forget to forgive yourself too - like I said, you were both young, and didn't know any better.


My first "real" relationship. 10 years.. nothing to show but bad social skills, no friends, and self worth issues. However, I've recently found my perfect someone because of these events. It's a regret.. but not something I'd change. Just handle differently if I could.