Everyone loves people who are polite and well behaved. While most of us realize the importance of being nice and patient, we all have times when we lose our cool and end up saying or doing things impulsively that we regret later. Deep down, our heart knows that we were mean and whatever we did in a fit of anger could have been avoided. But sometimes either we don’t have the courage to apologise, or it’s too late to say sorry.
People on Quora confessed the rudest things they have ever done and the answers will make you think twice before acting on impulse.
1. This was a few years ago, right after I completed my post-graduation. I was a bachelor, living alone in an apartment close to my office.
Quite naturally, it became the meeting hub every Friday. About a year after I joined, a girl joined our team. So, for the next party at my house, she was invited too. There we were, all of us, sitting in my drawing room, doing what we always did. Then, I lit a cigarette.
To her credit, she calmly said, ”That was uncalled for,” and sat there silently. She probably understood that this wasn’t the real me. I knew what I did was plain horrible. I couldn’t understand what had happened to me in that moment. I apologised to her later in the evening. That girl is now my wife.
2. My heart still aches from the thing that I did. I was in school back then. It was 7th grade.
Seven years later, I met with an accident which fractured my right shoulder and foot and I was left incapacitated. I couldn’t keep myself clean and had become super needy. It was then that I understood her pain. I recovered but the pain still lingers. I wish I could apologise to her but I don’t know where she is.
3. In a zoo in Sikkim, they keep most of the animals inside a huge moat. You get to see them from a height; there are no bars or fences.
So, I was busy looking at the jackal who was sleeping in peace when this man came and emptied his water bottle on the poor animal while his entire family chuckled. I had a bottle in my hands. I have quick reflexes and don’t like the sounds of a crying animal so I did the deed.
4. I had a former co-worker friend me on Facebook. When I worked with her, I was 35 and she was a sweet, very beautiful 17-year-old girl who would ask me questions about life, ask me for advice.
I became like a big brother/dad figure to her. But after I left that job, we just didn’t talk again until she contacted me on Facebook, probably five years later. Anybody who knows me knows that I’m a sarcastic goofball, and this is especially apparent on Facebook. So, one day, her boyfriend took a series of photographs of her frolicking in the sunshine and she changed her profile picture to be one of her with the sun behind her head, creating a really cool kaleidoscope effect.
She responded, very angrily: “THAT’S BECAUSE I HAD A STROKE, ASSHOLE”. I was so extremely confused by this, so I went through her Facebook history and found that yes, just a few months after I left my job with her, she had suffered a massive stroke that permanently affected the left-side of her body; her smiles would be forever lopsided and droopy. I was so apologetic and explained that I didn’t know, but it was too late. No matter what I said, she wasn’t listening, and I lost a friend, not just on Facebook, but a real friend. I still feel like such an incredible asshole for that one.
5. When I was in 7th standard, we faced a huge loss in our family business. Even managing day-to-day expenses became very difficult.
At one point my parents had to choose between the school fee and the house rent. So we moved to a small unit house from a huge 3 bedroom individual house. I didn’t want my friends to know that we got downgraded so I ensured to keep them away from my new house. One day, we received a letter from our school about the upcoming 3-day educational tour to Bangalore. The tour fee was ₹1000 per person and a particular date was mentioned as the last date to pay the fee.
In my school only cool & rich kids would pay and go for tours and since 5th standard, I had never missed the school tour. I knew I was not that rich kid anymore but with no second thoughts, I threw a tantrum. Dad gave in and asked me a week’s time to arrange the money. I was all excited and made plans with fellow cool kids. Dad called me the day before the last date. According to me, he was going to give me the money. But my dad kissed my forehead, brushed my hair and said in a broken voice that he tried his best but he couldn’t arrange the money. Till then I never knew I can shout that much.
I didn’t wait for his reply. I took my bag and went to the bus stop to board the school bus. To my surprise when I returned home dad gave me ₹1000 for the tour. He kissed me as always and spoke to me like nothing happened.
6. During my first year in college, I was sitting at a little outdoor coffee shop on campus. It was a nice, sunny day, and the patio was packed with people.
In the distance I noticed a young blind woman working her way among the human traffic flow. She was using a cane to navigate along the edge of the path at a steady pace. As she made her way along the railing of the shop and past my table, I glanced over my shoulder to view her road ahead.
I was scared of seeming like a crazy person shouting to a blind woman. I didn’t want to stand out. So I did nothing. And of course, only aware of the dangers on the ground with her cane, she hit her head on the low branch. She hit it hard. I could hear it. I still hear it. I sat and watched her suffer pain, because I was afraid to stand up and stand out to do the right thing. That event changed my life. I’d always tried to be a good person, helpful and courteous. But I failed that day for no reason other than some ridiculous notion of peer acceptance.
7. It was show-and-tell in 5th grade.
The class was completely silent. It was apparent to me that I had hurt George. I felt dreadful. I quietly sat down. This has bothered me all my life. Finally, just now, thanks to Quora, I have confessed publicly.
8. I was leaving my hometown for one of the biggest cities in the world, Mumbai. I was going to start my career in software engineering.
I was yet to own a nice formal shirt. It was the day before I left and my mother wanted to take me shopping. We were a modest, middle-class family and we had a fixed budget for everything. I still remember my mother had ₹2000 in her handbag to buy me a shirt and groceries for the next two weeks. She took me to an expensive-looking showroom, but before entering, I stopped and said that the shop seemed too expensive to find anything that would fit our budget: about ₹.500. She still insisted on going in and browsing the shelves.
Tiny drops of tears rolled out from her eyes. But I was careless and furious. We came home with nothing more said. It has been 6 years since and in retrospect, I realize that it was one of the biggest mistakes I ever made and there is nothing I can do to undo that. My mother has long forgiven me for that day but I still feel bad for how I acted. I now know that when parents have to show their love, money is the last thing they would think of.
From that day, they called me only once or twice a week. For some days, I enjoyed my freedom. But then, I realized what I did. They stopped calling me everyday thinking that it disturbed me. I was also not strong enough to say sorry to them. I regretted what I said.
10. I was going to college at the time, parking was always torture. Around 3,000 spots for 10,000 students kind of deal. So, I was always prepared for an all out parking war. One day, I went grocery shopping with some cousins.
Immediately, I felt horrible. I saw him park at one of the spots furthest from the grocery store. When we were getting out of the car and walking into the grocery store- I saw him get out and he was limping to the store, obviously, old and disabled. My heart fell to the floor and I couldn’t believe that I acted like that. I spent many a nights crying about this incident. After that horrible incident, my road rage went away completely. It taught me one of the biggest lessons in life. Be mindful. Be respectful. Be nice.
All images designed by Aroop Mishra.