Throughout our lives, we witness all sorts of injustices. They can be minor events or more serious, but despite their gravity, they all leave the affected parties scarred in some way. Here are the most unfair things people have ever seen:
#1 Brace Face
My sister and I both had braces and we had to wear those rubber bands that fix your jaw or whatever. I wore my bands every single night, while my sister rarely wore them. When we had our follow-up appointments, the dentist examined my teeth and then gave me a disappointed look. “You haven’t been wearing your bands, have you?” I tried to tell her I always wore them, but she obviously didn’t believe me. Then my sister got in the chair, and our dentist said, “Wow! You’ve been wearing your bands!” That was maybe 10 years ago. My teeth are still worse than my sister’s.
#2 A Cruel Fate
I took care of a woman who had cancer. At the time, she was already in her end days. She was young, late-30s, and she had three sons. Apparently, she had only just been diagnosed earlier that year. When her husband got the news that she had cancer, he was on his way home to comfort her and he lost his life in a car accident. These boys lost both their parents in the span of about 10 months. All of us nurses had to rotate care of her, as no one could leave that room and not be in tears. We didn't want to add to the boys' grief.
#3 Misplaced Guilt
My younger cousin's best friend was diagnosed with brain cancer before she even hit pre-k. Her mother was an oncologist who had a lot of (extremely misplaced) guilt at not recognizing impossible signs of her only child's cancer. She was in and out of the hospital before passing away at the age of 12 after a week of what could only have been immense pain. One of her tumors grew so large on her spine that it broke her back.
Somehow, through the eight years, this girl managed to be the comedian of their group of friends and the girls all organized charities before and after her death. It's been seven years now—her mother remarried a few years ago and had all of her daughter's friends serve as bridesmaids. Even still, watching that happen to an only child and her incredibly adoring and doting mother was the most unfair thing I have ever seen.
#4 Goodbye, Friend
My parents did this to me. We were about to move to a different state, and they started posting ads about my dog. They said she was too high maintenance, but dang, it was my dog. She listened to me. One day, my friends and I rode by on our scooters to raid the freezer for popsicles, and some random guy was loading my dog into the back of his truck. They knew where I was, they knew he was coming to look at her, and they said nothing. They were totally willing to have me come back home to no dog, right before we moved to a state I didn't want to move to, leaving behind the first friend I'd ever made.
#5 Train To Hawaii
My teacher promised a ticket to Hawaii if anyone could solve a hard problem. I can’t even recall what the problem was. We were in the second grade, so I suspect he assumed no one could solve it. I did. He told me it was a train ticket. It kind of messed me up in school for a while because I would purposely stop trying my best, thinking that my teachers were always just lying to me.
#6 Sensitive Emails
My coworker was written up by HR for being part of an email thread. They told her that the thread was not inappropriate but it made light of some bad behavior within the company. The coworker in question never even responded to the email. The sad thing is, no one was brave enough to stick up for her. It was pretty messed up.
#7 Sue Her
I watched someone get fired today. Last night, he got cut from his serving shift, so he finished his side work then went home. Right after he left, it got busy and the manager who cut him got overwhelmed. She flipped out saying if he didn't get back there she was going to fire him for leaving even though SHE cut him. He walked into work this morning and got fired. There are at least seven of us going to HR tomorrow because this is just the most recent thing in a line of nonsense our managers have been pulling since our GM quit.
#8 Ancillary Role
I got written up once for sleeping through a 3 a.m. phone call from work. I was the transportation manager but it was the warehouse that screwed up, so it was their problem to fix. We had an SOP that specifically said that I wasn't to be called in for that particular situation. No one in the warehouse got in trouble, but I somehow became the go-to guy for warehouse problems even though I didn't work in the warehouse, so apparently I was expected to fix this problem.
#9 An Unfair Compromise
I was in my buddy’s car when he got pulled over for speeding. When I saw the cop as we drove past him, I instinctively tugged on my seatbelt to confirm it was on. When the cop wrote my buddy his ticket, he gave me one for not wearing my seatbelt. He apparently thought my tug on the belt was me putting it on. I explained everything and he didn’t believe me. I went to court over it and the judge “compromised” by cutting the fine in half. I didn’t do anything wrong and still had to pay a fine.
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#10 IRS Mess
The IRS screwed up my taxes and sent me a bill for $2,000 that I didn't owe. In fact, I was entitled to a refund. After a year of being ignored, threatened and treated like a criminal ("You're not the first person to try this" is what they usually said on the rare occasion I could get someone on the phone), I finally managed to get the IRS to admit that I never owed any money and that the mistake was entirely on their end. Guess what? I still had to pay the interest I had accrued on the money which I didn't owe. It was $500.
#11 The Sega Punishment
My mom bought my brother a Sega from a garage sale years after it was a popular gaming system. It didn’t change the love my brother had for it. My brother and I routinely took care of ourselves after school as parents were working. One day, my dad came home early and was irate that my brother wasn’t home. He then proceeded to make me throw his Sega in the dumpster of our complex and told me if I brought it back in, I would get in big trouble. This was his idea of a punishment towards my brother. In my eight-year-old brain, I obviously don’t want to get in trouble. The look on my brother's face when he came home was just heartbreaking. It still makes me sad when I think about it.
#12 Cut Off
My dad used to throw my toys away when they got the slightest bit damaged. A Lego missing a piece? It means I couldn't take care of it and therefore I shouldn't have it. To the trash, it went. Now he guilt trips me because I rarely visit him in his 70s. Let's just say that throwing my toys away was just a sample of the permanently abusive environment my mother and I lived in.
#13 Snapping Cartridges
When I was younger, my brother and I both wanted to play different video games on our N64. My dad had us each make paper airplanes and whichever one flew the furthest would determine who could decide what game we would play. My airplane ended up flying further but then my brother started to cry so my dad just took both the games and snapped them in half.
#14 Sisterly Love
My older sister always wanted whatever it was I had, and if I didn't give it to her she would go crying to our mom. My mom would tell me to share or she would throw it away. Of course, not wanting to have my stuff thrown out, I would hand it over and have to sit there, watching her play with whatever she got with a smug little smile. She never gave any of it back either, so I should have just thrown it away. My mom says she has no memory of ever saying it but it was said so many times it's burned into my brain. I knew it was coming as soon as my sister said she liked something of mine. We're both in our mid-20s and she still steals from me every chance she gets. Good times.
#15 The Grudge Lives On
When we were younger, my brother was very irresponsible with his things. He had his new bike stolen after leaving it on the front lawn of the house because he was too lazy to bring it into the garage. Fine, his fault, his loss. But then, he started borrowing my bike all of the time. He did the exact same thing with it and it got stolen within a matter of weeks. My parents refused to get me a new bike or give him any heck over losing mine. I never got another bike until I was an adult. Also, since his birthday was in the summer, he got a brand new bike (brand new everything). My birthday is two weeks after Christmas, you so you can guess who got the used bike.
#16 Favoritism At Play
I knew a family where the younger kid got literally anything he wanted. And of course, he'd ask for stuff and get it while the older brother got hand me downs or nothing. One incident that sticks out in my mind was the kid got a brand new RC car while the older brother got a little toy one. The kid broke it within an hour of getting home. The first response by parents was to yell at the older brother for breaking it.
#17 Not Cut Out For Parenthood
I'm a foster parent. All of our foster kids have had terrible stories. Some have had happy endings... new families, old families that got their act together...some do not have happy endings. Trying to help these kids is the hardest thing I've ever done. Unfair, to me, is knowing that the last night six kids, aged two through 12, slept on cots in a CPS office near here because their parents couldn't keep clean. There aren't enough foster families to handle the load. Tonight, they'll probably be in an institution until a placement opens up. I can't think of anything more unfair than a toddler sleeping on a cot in a strange office building because their parents couldn't be parents.
#18 Hard Luck
A girl who lived down the street from me passed away in a car crash. She was really young. She hadn't even finished college yet. Two or three years later, her younger sister (who my sister and I used to play with together) lost her life the exact same way. The only one left is the middle child, their brother. I can tell it has absolutely crushed their family and I just remember going to the funeral and thinking why?
Why did they have to live through this not once but twice? That much heartache has to be unbelievable and it's incredibly unfair. The brother was always a little prick growing up but man, I wish I could pull him aside now and tell him just how sorry I am that he has to live without his sisters. I never really knew him though, so he'd probably think that is weird. But I think of him and his family often.
#19 Worst Prize Ever
I was once at a fundraiser where the winning prize was tickets to go see Pearl Jam in concert. At the end of the night, they called my name. I was the winner! WOO! Except, when I got to the front of the room to collect my tickets, the organizers gave me looks of confusion. Turns out, some scumbag told the organizers that he was me, and THEY GAVE HIM THE TICKETS! By the time they verified my identity, he was long gone and I was out of luck. The best they could do was an apology and a $50 gift card to T.G.I.Friday’s.
#20 The Only "B"
In Spanish class, I did a project with some other students. We made an instructional video, all in Spanish. The other students already spoke Spanish fluently and I didn’t. We all were in the video but I ended up planning, writing, editing and filming the entire thing. I got a B on the project because my accent wasn’t as good as the others who got As. The teacher knew I did most of the work, too.
#21 The Audacity...
I have always hated group projects with a passion. I remember one I did in high school where part of your grade was based on peer evaluation from your other group members. We all agreed to give each other 100s but lo and behold, when the peer grades came back, one of the girls screwed me over and gave me a low grade. When I asked her why, she basically said it was because she didn't like me.
#22 A Total Injustice
My parents are divorcing. Unbeknownst to my mom, my dad racked up over 400k in debt, plus he took out $100k in equity on the house. Now my mom must accept half of that debt, as well as give up half of her 401k. She worked hard for 30 years and will be left penniless. It is a total injustice to the highest degree.
#23 Never Forget
During my freshman year of college, I got extremely close to a girl who was a senior. We did everything together. At the time, I was heavily religious and so was she. We went to the same cultish church and spent almost all of our waking hours together. She was my best friend, and my duet partner when we lead worship at our university’s Christian group. She was just an all-around wonderful, intelligent girl.
The summer after she graduated, I went through some serious personal stuff, and I ended up walking away from church and religion. Because of this, we grew apart. I still saw her and we were still friends, but things were strained. About a year went by, and I was seeing her less and less. I missed her and our friendship. I reached out. She came over to my dorm, and we spent some time together. We made plans to go see Les Mis in theaters the next week.
We never got to go.
She’d been having back pain the doctors couldn’t figure out, and that week she started having seizures and throwing up too. Because of these issues, she moved back in with her parents. She ended up diagnosed with Stage IV cancer. I was never able to afford the trip to be with her when she was sick. I still feel so guilty for not just figuring it out.
October will be four years since she passed, and I still miss her so so much. I’m big on remembering people accurately and not pretending they were perfect just because they’re gone. She wasn’t perfect by any means, but she was closer than anyone else I’ve ever known. It was so unfair for someone like her to not only die young but to suffer as horribly as she did. It wasn’t fair that I wasn’t there for her when she needed me most. The world is truly dimmer without her light.
#24 Coffee Culprit
Someone spilled coffee on the doorknob of the classroom for my chemistry class. Our teacher decided that it had to be one of us who did it. She banned bathroom breaks for the entire week until one of us confessed. The classes were three hours long. One of the students took one for the team and was sent straight to the admin’s office after class got out. He explained what happened, and justice was served. She was allowed to finish teaching the course but was never hired again.
#25 Shutting Him Up
I had a college professor that had a rule like this: if you left the room, you wouldn’t be allowed back in. He said as adults, we should know to use the bathroom before his class and not waste his time. That lasted all of two weeks until he called out a girl who went to leave and as he started lecturing her on being an adult she said, "Sorry, I may be an adult, but even I can't control when my period starts." Never heard of the rule again....
#26 Keeping Promises
My senior prom. I had already arranged with my parents that I would be going to a friend's house after the prom, just a small group of us. I was a good kid, never really got in trouble, good grades, etc. Then, on the day of, my parents told me I couldn't stay out past curfew, which they set at 10 p.m. I reminded them that my older sister had been able to go out at her senior prom. They said that she was 18 at the time, so they couldn't enforce a curfew on her.
I was only 17 my senior year, and explained that it wasn't fair that they were going back on their promise. In probably my first real act of rebellion, I told them I was going anyway. They were still awake when I got home and they had clearly been arguing all night. They tried to guilt-trip me into feeling bad for causing their argument, but I wasn't about to be pulled into that nonsense.
#27 Toe Trouble
I was in intermediate school and we were out at a camp. I was the only scout among the 60-odd kids, so I was given the harder tasks to keep myself entertained. On the first night, we were carrying these heavy wooden benches around, and my partner dropped his end of the bench.
Due to the sudden drop, the bench slammed into my foot, almost completely crushing it. It swelled up to nearly twice the size and I broke at least three toes. Despite clearly being in tremendous pain, I was told to “suck it up” because I was a scout. I was told to shove my half-broken foot into tramping boots and keep up with everyone else for the next several days.
#28 The Worst Kind
Growing up, I had a friend whose family was the worst. I went over there for playdates a lot. One day, a Korean girl who I sort of befriended and helped with her homework (she was younger than me) followed me to my friend's house. When we saw her come up to the house, the mom shooed her away. She said, “I don’t want you people in my house.”
The girl went home crying her eyes out. I felt terrible for not following and comforting her but I was 10 years old and didn’t know what to do. The worst part is that the mother who insulted the girl blamed ME for the incident because she was trying to save face. The Korean family told me they didn’t need me to help with her homework anymore. I’m not sure if the girl was too shy or scared to tell the truth, but I never spoke to either of the families again.
#29 Set Up To Fail
I'm an American that immigrated to Canada. Part of the process for getting permanent residency involves taking a test called CELPIP to prove you are fluent in English. The test is unbelievably hard and I didn't do as well as I should have on it. I can't imagine how other people in the same room as me must have felt while taking it. Here's an example of something that is similar to a CELPIP question. We decided to travel to the large, blue building.
What best describes the building?
That's not an actual question but it should give you an idea.
#30 Snowballing Debt
My friend and coworker had been trying to get her degree. The first college closed so she went to another one, but then that one closed too. She is $70k in debt and still has another year to get her ASSOCIATES degree. She will never pay that off... Ever. She does have a lawyer fighting for her right now. I'm not even sure what to say. I am so sorry for her. The system is so messed up and a college you pay for simply closing and leaving people without a chance to get what they paid for is absolutely unjust.
#31 Scum Of The Earth
Every Christmas, I would bring donated animal food to the local shelter. On one occasion, I was waiting at the front desk when a man stormed in. He had the most beautiful dog on a leash and he was screaming at the receptionist, saying, “My son adopted this dog and he didn’t consult us first. We don’t want it, I’m here to give it back, just take it!” The son was nowhere to be seen, and the dog had no idea what was going on. He had only been adopted a week prior after having waited in the shelter for over four months. I stood there speechless..
#32 Just No Winning
Me admitting a 51-year-old woman in palliative care, knowing she had just a few days left before dying of cancer, while her son, 22 years old like me, watched my supervisor explain to her what was going to happen. He had lost his father to cancer a year and a half ago, and in the same month, he learned his mother had stage IV cancer. Why did he have to suffer through this while I still have my two parents and all my grandparents? Cancer is a horrible disease and life can be so unfair.
#33 What A Child
On my 14th birthday, my grandparents got me my first iPod. My older brother threw a fit because he didn’t get anything. He made a scene in Best Buy until they bought him a Nintendo DS so he ended up getting a present too, for no reason. The next weekend, he came home from being with my grandparents with an iPod of his own… I brushed it off and just laughed at him. He’s 17 years old and still acting like such a child.
#34 Where Your Donations Go
Not seen, but heard. I once interviewed a guy in high school for some boring stuff. I went to his house and everything. H was an old guy, but in my opinion, he would beat out that Don Equis guy for the most interesting man. The interview took 5 minutes, but then he spent hours telling me other stories. The sad one was about what happens to food that gets donated to "charity."
He was a mercenary for many years. He witnessed with his own eyes, a ship full of grains and canned goods docking in some African country. The struggling civilians were kept behind a barbed fence while armed men came in loading up EVERYTHING onto their trucks. After they left, the fence gate was opened and the starving people were allowed to pick through the spilled grains, left-behind cans of goods, and rats (both dead and alive).
When you donate anything to "the poor" in 3rd world countries, all you're doing is fueling the systems that keep the people in poverty.
#35 Keep Quiet
In German class last week, my teacher told all the students to get into two large groups. We were going to play some kind of game and whoever got the most points would win a pizza. The other group went first and did a great job.
When it came to my group, there were a couple of idiots fooling around. Before we even got to show anything, the teacher disqualified us and automatically gave the pizza to the first group. I’m still salty about this. Just because two students couldn’t keep quiet, we had to watch in suffering as the other group at their fresh, hot pizza in front of us.
#36 Gone Too Soon
A girl I went to high school with was ended in her home after we graduated. Her boyfriend just stormed in and did the deed. She was so kind to me when others weren't. She always had a smile on her face and she was just so genuine. No one knew that she was having problems with her boyfriend. She had such a bright future ahead and he selfishly took it from her, from her family, and her friends. She didn't deserve to lose her life at 18.
#37 Endless Suffering
I have a friend who was born with many physical and psychological problems. I don't know all of them but I do know she has lupus and depression. She's feeling pain almost all the time and has to take a lot of medicines each day. She even tried to end it all once, but fortunately, she didn't succeed. It's so unfair she has to live with all these things even though she never did anything to deserve any of this. It pains me to know nothing I do can really help her and that there are more people who suffer their whole lives just like her.
#38 In The Family
My girlfriend was the happiest kindest person ever! We had just finished our first year of university and things were great. Then she was diagnosed with an incurable brain tumor in the summer. She passed away a year later. The most unfair part is that her sister had passed away from the same type of cancer as a child. Her family is the best, it's heartbreaking.
#39 It's Unforgivable
My fiance told me a story about how he flew to see his parents some years after he had moved out. He wasn’t super close with his family, but they still kept in touch. He mentioned how excited he was to see his childhood dog again. When he got there and asked about him, the mom said, “Oh, Buster? We put him down last summer.” He’s somewhat patched things up with his mom in the years since, but he still won’t forgive her for not even telling him about the dog. He’s still upset that he never got the chance to say bye.
#40 A Little Too Late
I was adopting my dog from animal control and I saw this guy who came in asking about a couple of cats he dropped off the day before. He had changed his mind and said he was going to keep them. The shelter has a policy that they don't put down animals that have been surrendered for at least three days. I guess it gets really overcrowded or something, I'm not sure.
Point is, he had 48 hours until that could happen to his cats. Anyway, he was explaining this to the front desk lady and she was looking up records for him. She told him both cats were already put down. The look on his face still hurts my heart today. It was this look of hurt, guilt, anger, and sadness... He cried over those babies, too.
#41 Winner, Winner, Lobster Dinner
When I was in grade school we had to design a fictional community center. My teacher promised a lobster dinner to the group that got the highest mark.
We busted our butts designing our community center. We called a long list of businesses to determine membership fees, the cost of construction, community outreach programs and so much more. We even helped the special needs kid in our group write a jingle, and we got the highest mark.
When it came time for our lobster dinner, my group stayed in the classroom during recess to enjoy the fruits of our labor. My teacher brought out our “lobster,” which ended up being just a measly loaf of bread with googly eyes and paper lobster claws stuck in the side.
It was on that day that I learned the true meaning of disappointment.
#42 They Don't Deserve Him
When I was a kid, one of our neighbors got divorced and the mother remarried. After a couple of years, the stepfather adopted all three of her kids. This triggered the ex-husband to clean up his act and their mother divorced the stepfather to get back with him. This man paid child support for all three kids while they lived with their mother and biological father until they were 18.
#43 Swindling The Blind
I waw this lady stealing money from a blind man. She was selling some things on the street (water and food, if I’m not mistaken) and he asked if she could count the money for him. She got a fifty and said it was a five. Luckily, some people around stopped her and helped the blind man. I was fuming for the rest of the day. One woman said that she would call the cops, and the lady was quick to get out of there.
#44 Out Of Spite
I know somebody who is one of the best surgeons in her country and was also the co-founder and co-owner of multi-specialty hospitals. One of the business partners teamed up with the bank they had loaned funds from to cut off rent and get them evicted. Then, they filed multiple (false) complaints in court. Then bribed the judges and attorneys in their [bank's] favor. I'm constantly baffled by the extent to which people will stoop out of spite and jealousy.
#45 Taking It Out On Us
I honestly think there are teachers out there who take it upon themselves to be even harder on kids with EDS and other “invisible” disabilities because they think we’re spoiled little snowflakes and it’s all in our heads. Like, they resent the accommodations that they are supposed to give us and see them as undeserved, so they take it out on us. I had at least a few that were like that. In the seventh grade, one of my teachers threatened to take a wrist brace away from me that I was trying to adjust so I could write because the Velcro made a bit of noise. This wasn’t during quiet lecture time, it was during work time when other kids were talking to each other.
#46 Ungrateful People
I think it was my last day in the army. It is tradition and a norm for an outgoing service member to get an award encompassing their entire military service. I did 9 years, two deployments spent months away from my family and I was being discharged due to medical reasons. I asked about my award and was given a counseling statement saying I was too fat to be deemed eligible for an award. I had gained weight from a mix of medications and an inability to exercise. They didn't even throw a farewell lunch. Only one person said goodbye to me. I am still bitter that after three years, on my last day, only one person cared enough to say goodbye.
#47 Never The Same Again
To this day, my friend's ex's dog is still suffering. He can't move his legs or spine... No dog should be unable to walk, run and play. One of my dogs passed away in front of us and my other dog wasn't the same. He'd always eat anything he ever saw on the floor. He didn't eat anything or drink. He just sat in his cage. In two days, he passed away from what we think was extreme depression. Broke our hearts.
#48 Making The Call
My girlfriend passed away last week. She had been fighting and suffering for over two years because some doctors misdiagnosed her. She had been through countless hospital stays and surgeries, two comas, a dozen infections, and every time they’d say “she has 24 hours,” she’d prove them wrong. But this time was different; the hospital knew she had the infection but didn’t disclose it. Someone decided it was her time to give up. That infection destroyed her organs, and by the time it was discovered by other doctors, it was too late. All because some egotistical jerk stole her right to decide to fight.
#49 An Infuriating Thing
Any given instance of civil forfeiture where the cops take a bunch of money off of someone at a traffic stop and don't even charge them with a crime. It's common and it's somehow not only legal but has been tested and approved by federal courts (I don't think the Supreme Court has weighed in on it). It absolutely infuriates me every time I hear about it and it's never even happened to me.
#50 No Sense
When I was in sixth grade, a kid came up to me insulting my family using all sorts of colorful words. I ignored him. This upset him even more. He repeated his offensive slurs while banging my head against a concrete wall. I took it, gritting my teeth through the pain. At some point, I had enough and spun him around to press him against the wall, telling him to knock it off. He burst out crying, and of course, the teacher only saw up to that point. I got suspended while he got coddled.