From ending a friendship of 7 years because of an ex, to English language barrier that caused a classmate to be bullied and eventually switch to a different school, people share the moment they realize they were actually the villain in someone else's story.
[Source can be found at the end of the article]
“It wasn’t like I knew it was dangerous…”
“‘You’re the one who killed my husband.’
The widow of a recently deceased farmer said that to me when I called for him on the phone. I sold agricultural chemicals at the time, and she was referring to the weed killer he bought and used for years. It had recently been discovered that the active ingredient, 2-4 D, is carcinogenic. My customer had died of cancer, and she might not have been completely wrong. But it wasn’t like I knew it was dangerous in that way. None of us did.”
“I took a cat’s kittens away from her when they were 4-5 weeks old because she couldn’t take care of them anymore due to not producing enough milk. They were also in a very terrible unclean environment so one’s eyes started closing up. I couldn’t take her with the kittens because she’s an outside/shop kitty, where I was bringing them into my home to clean them up, de-flea them (I took around 50 off the first time and 30 off the second day), and gave them the food they needed. Now they are looking healthy and being rambunctious kittens that they should be. Anyways, after I took them away she’d meow for her kittens trying to find them, and it made me think that’s like how humans with missing children feel, so I felt horrible about doing it even if it was for a good cause.”
“It’s no win”
“I was at a house party with some young guys and a couple girls. A girl was passed out and I saw some guys circling her and being generally creepy. Everyone was getting ready to pass out and I was pretty sure something awful would go down if she was left there. My reaction was to move her to her friend’s room to sleep it off with her friend away from the group. I woke her up and walked her to the room where her friend welcomed her to share the bed. After I left the room I was confronted by a different girl claiming it was an attempted harassment. I couldn’t talk my way out of it. I got an Uber out of there but I still think about what I should have done differently in that situation. I was the enemy in that moment and I couldn’t figure out how to defend myself. I think now that it is never a good idea to be in that situation. It’s no win.”
A bitter, nasty custody battle
“My husband and I were deeply embroiled in a bitter, nasty custody battle for years for his son from a previous relationship. I remember talking to my mom about it one night and going on and on about what an evil witch my stepson’s mother was and she started laughing and said, ‘Just think – in her story, you’re the evil one!’ It was so true – I’m sure her versions of the same tale were how my husband and I were these awful people.”
Cheating is always way worse
“I dated someone, but was still hung up on someone else. I had to break up with this girl, after a few months of dating, because ‘there’s another woman.’
I think she assumed I had cheated on her, which I didn’t. But, which is worse: ‘guy cheated on me’ or ‘guy had feelings for another woman the entire time we dated.’
I think I’m probably the villain in either case.”
“I write software for a living. I have a co-worker who’s been assigned to work on the part of the software that I’m responsible for, and, well, he’s terrible at his job. He’s slow to deliver the changes we need, they are never tested, and are almost always riddled with bugs. He’s an experienced guy (several years older than I am, and longer in the industry), and the changes I’ve asked him for should in no way be beyond his skill level. I have a junior guy who’s less than a year out of college also doing some work on my portion of the software, and he’s FAR more reliable. The whole situation is NOT helping my natural tendency to resist delegating work to others. I’m frustrated with the situation, as is our boss, and I’m sure this co-worker is as well.
But I’m sure from his perspective, I’m pushy, arrogant, and asking too much from him, and not understanding of his excuses. If/when he’s put on an ‘improvement plan’ on the path to getting fired, I’m sure I’ll be the villain in his eyes, or at least the 2nd villain behind our boss (who, again, hasn’t asked him to do anything beyond what someone of his experience level should be able to do.)”
A hateful letter
“In high school, I wrote one of my closest (and I only ever had a few) friends a hateful letter. She’s a quiet, unassuming person with a genuine passion for things that I never learned to appreciate. I no longer remember what I wrote but I still remember what I actually felt – insecurity, jealousy. I was jealous of seeing her being herself. I believe the letter was intended for me to be ‘open’ to her – to point out things she should really never be doing but she never did anything wrong. She just didn’t care about being judged. And that’s what I’m most jealous of – being unburdened by other people’s opinion.”
Just trying to help
“My ex-husband probably considers me the villain because I put my foot down and made him take responsibility for his actions, which included him having to move back in with his parents so that he could pay his half of the bills and expenses we split when we separated. I gave him all the chances in the world and even told him I would front him several months payments so he could find a place to live. But he had to have a job by X date. A friend even guaranteed him a job but he skipped the interview.
I’ve heard his versions of the story, and I’m the bad person.”
Forced into dating her
“I moved to a new area, knew a few folks, and met some of their friends. One of them happened to be this girl. I wasn’t interested in dating her. Let’s start with that. But she was nice, friendly, etc. One day, she tells me she’s going to the movies with a friend. I said I’d like to go as well, and asked her to buy my ticket, and I’d pay her back.
Anyways, we had a good time, enjoyed the movie. And then as it ended, this girl says she has to run to the restroom, and that’s when her ‘friend’ strikes. She just goes off on me about, ‘How dare you play with her and spend any time with her. If you want to date her, then be a man and just ask her.’
There’s something about me that just cannot stand having my character questioned. I wasn’t trying anything more than being friendly. But this friend was insulting me. So I said, ‘Fine, I’ll ask her out then.’ Just so she’d shut up.
And when I turned around, this girl was standing there with doe eyes. She immediately said she’d love to go on a date. And I was stuck. I wasn’t interested in her. I just wanted her friend to be quiet. But I couldn’t say I wasn’t interested now. Her friend would only have more ‘reason’ to believe all men were evil.
Long story short, I ended up ‘dating’ her for a couple of months. The whole time just trying to let her down easy. After two months, I was able to sit her down and just say I wasn’t interested in dating her anymore. She took it better than I expected, but she was still hurt. We didn’t see each other for a long time after that. She’s married now. So all’s well that ends well I suppose. But I still feel bad. I know I’d hate to find out I’d been treated like that.”
Her jealousy ended the relationship
“My best friend is Male, I am Female. We have never had anything going on other than friendship.
He started dating a girl who I knew from College. As far as I know, me and her were fine, in fact, I even liked her from what I remembered, and thought she was cool. What I didn’t know was that she dated a guy in our class that had it bad for me. He would compare her to me a lot, and was generally a jerk and made her feel inferior to me…
So she started dating my best friend and cue years of her being cold towards me, rude, and starting fights with my friend when she thought he is ‘taking my side.’ Her jealousy caused them to break up. I think she was convinced we would end up dating after they broke up. NOPE. I was engaged to the love of my life, and my buddy was just that, just my buddy. I married my now Hubby, and he and my Best Friend get along great.
He is now married to a nice girl, we get along and we all hang out regularly. I used to feel a bit bad for her, but it’s not my fault what happened to her. But my friend was great to her, and I was nothing but polite and nice.”
The resentful IT guy
“I was transferred to an office where the local IT guy had been goofing off behind a locked door for years. Proceed to do the job I came to do, and got promoted to a spot over him.
He was already resentful before I got there, and massively more so when he did not slide into the slot I vacated (and he was in no way qualified for.)
Eventually, he transferred out to a position where I heard they made him actually work. After he left people told me how much he’d bad mouthed me.
I’ll call him Doug, a story: we were deploying the first PCs in the office and our HR reps got a couple. On one of them, the secretary, asked if he could install the mouse (our applications were DOS based – so it was not required though the machines had windows on them (which you had to start by typing win at the command prompt) this woman wanted to play solitaire, he said ‘no,’ but stuck the mouse in her desk drawer. A day later I went by to check and maybe install something – she asked about the mouse – I plugged it in.
And he wondered why he never got promoted. Be nice to HR, people.”
“English isn’t my first language, and I misunderstood the writing assignment from my 6th-grade teacher. I don’t remember what the prompt was, but I ended up writing a piece about a fellow classmate that no one liked. Sadly, the teacher decided that I should read mine to the class in order to practice speaking and correct any mispronunciation. I ended up insulting the kid in front of the whole class for what felt like a good minute before the teacher realized what was going on and stopped me. I realized after the fact that I was the jerk in that story but never had the guts to apologize. He ended up moving the following year due to bullies and family issues. Although this was the only incident between him and myself, he probably viewed me as the French bully that publicly insulted him.
Side Note: I had barely been in the States for more than a year before this incident. However, that still doesn’t excuse me from how I behaved. I wish him the best, and hopefully, he ended up living a better life after he moved.”
The tough, but right decision
“I had to ‘break up’ with my best friend of 7 years. The reason is that I was so in love with her that it was affecting my actual relationships and life decisions. Whenever she talked to me about whoever she was dating/sleeping with at the time it would mess with my head so much. As much as I tried I realized that I will never be able to separate my feelings for her from our friendship. I decided to finally explain this and ask her out. She told me she isn’t remotely interested in me romantically. That’s fine and I understand, but I can’t be friends with her anymore. It isn’t healthy for me.
This whole situation played out less than a month after she left her boyfriend of 3 years and in the middle of her finals week. She sent me the longest “screw you” message I ever received. She said I was a horrible friend and how she has had a bunch of panic attacks and now has severe issues with trusting people because of me.
After the fact, I got back together with a girl I left to pursue my former best friend. I explained to her what happened and she understood. She knew the whole time we were dating that I had strong feelings for my former best friend. She took me back without a second thought. Our relationship has been amazing ever since. I’ve never been happier. I’m stable now and my mood isn’t dictated by how my former best friend was feeling. I don’t miss her. I don’t regret or feel bad about what I did. I made the right call, and I’d do it again.”
Not her fault to begin with
“I was in a relationship, or so I thought, with this guy. Unbeknownst to me, my friend also thought she was in a relationship with the same guy. He knocked us both up, didn’t tell either of us. I was stationed in a different country when I found out I was pregnant, and my friend had stopped talking to me at that point. I come back to the states, I’m about 4 months along. I hear she’s also pregnant, and about 4 months along, by the same guy. Both she and I were convinced he was going to leave the other one and be with us. In the end, after we had our kids, she had hers the day after I had mine, I ended up pregnant again by him and he just stopped going up to the other state to see her. I saw her Facebook, she told her friends, who were also my friends, that I threatened to kill myself and both of my children if he didn’t stay with me. Years later, I apologized to her, even though it wasn’t anything either of us had done, it was all on him. She didn’t want to hear it.”
The horrible friend in his eyes
“One of my best friends came to me a few months back and explained he was dating my ex. Literally the only ex I would care about him dating, the one that ended badly, the one ex I would never consider being friends with. I just couldn’t understand why, so many women out there, so many dating apps, why would he actively pursue this girl he barely knew on Instagram, and start a thing, knowing how I feel about her. I think at first he didn’t consider I would have a problem with it, that’s why he dated her for a month before telling me. When he told me I kind of just played it off, but texted him later and said I’m not cool with it, and I never will be. I just knew it would ruin our friendship if he stayed with her because I don’t want to see her, under any circumstance. And of course, over the months, it was ruined. We don’t hang out at all anymore. I couldn’t bear seeing him post anything on social media with her in it, so I removed him. It hurt a lot.
I’m sure in his eyes I’m the ex-friend who had no chill, and why can’t I just let bygones be bygones and get along with him and her and be cool with it. I’m the guy who unfollowed him on Instagram and Snapchat instead of working things out.”
The most awkward ride home
“My buddy for a couple of years and his (now ex) fiance asked me to come along with them on their anniversary date (weird, I know!) It started with a bickering filled dinner at Cracker Barrel, then ice cream and finally hiking in the mountains. They got into another argument and he just locked himself in his car pouting while she stormed off on the trail.
I followed the girl because A: he locked himself in, meaning I couldn’t really do anything for him, and B: Her decision-making skills were questionable at best so her being by herself wasn’t a good idea. I let her borrow my jacket, as she was freezing and I was just trying to be nice. After 10 minutes Buddy is walking towards us so I think, ‘Yay we can awkwardly finish this and just go home,’ but instead, he started picking up pinecones off the ground and throwing them at me while simultaneously yanking my jacket off her. They fought some more, he stormed off into the mountains for 30 minutes and I had to half carry her back to the car because she was dehydrated. We waited until he came back, where he then told me, ‘get away from my wife,’ while pulling out his pocket knife. He never said, but I saw in his face that he thought I was spending all day trying to steal his girl. He then went off a tear-filled rant in the car about how I was weak and that we were never friends. It was the most awkward ride home ever.”
An undesirable and stressful relationship
“My roommate had a huge fight with my other roommate and moved out the next day. She revealed that she believed that we were excluding her and causing her anxiety, so much so that she didn’t like to stay home so she stayed at her mom’s. My other roommate and I were baffled because the problem roommate was literally never home, so of course we would hang out with each other. We all were friends, we all hung out with each other separately and in a group, I even threw a party with problem roommate without the other roommate. All of it was delusional (she returned a few weeks later to apologize and admitted that none of it was true; she just had very bad anxiety). We have had issues with her before concerning her temper and attitude, and decided to cut our friendship and gently let her know that living with her again was not something we were about. We made it clear that we would always be there for her and that we encouraged her to seek help.
We’re civil now. We text each other on our birthdays and catch up, but she’s blocked me on all social media and I’m sure she talks bad me all the time for being a ‘terrible friend.’ I used to feel a little guilty about it, but I was honestly sick of her accusations and she did some very mean things that made friendship with her undesirable and stressful.”