High school reunions are a good time to catch up with former classmates and teachers who shaped you into the person you are today. However, not every high school reunion is a good time. In fact, some of them end with tears, rumors, or don’t even see the light of day. These are some of the worst things people saw at their reunions.
#1 She Was Wrong
Some girl confessed to deceiving her high school sweetheart, thinking enough time had passed it wouldn’t bother him. She thought wrong. The reunion was 10 years later. The two of them hadn’t seen each other in years. As far as I know, they broke up shortly after high school ended. After she broke the news, somewhat nonchalantly as well, the guy flipped out then started screaming at her. She ran away, at which point he broke down and said something about wasting his high school years and left. We still managed to have a good time even after all that, which was nice.
#2 Suck Eggs
Someone I knew from school tried to arrange an unofficial reunion as the school wasn’t going to do one. He was socially inept, so he would say and do odd things, which people picked up on a lot. But his heart was always in the right place. He went to a lot of effort but very few people responded at all. Those that did mostly made snide comments about the event behind their back, like dissing the location etc. Some made fun of him personally too.
Then close to the event, he cancels and blows up, sending everyone a (justified) message about how they can all go suck eggs. He also mentioned that he was just trying to do something nice and wanted to catch up with people. That was received with more snide remarks too. He passed away unexpectedly just a few months later.
#3 Retiring Early
One guy had made not one but two fortunes and had a net worth of well over $100 million by our 20th reunion. He'd already retired. On our classmate update bulletin, he listed his occupation as "unemployed and unemployable" as a bit of a gag. Some of the well-meaning but clueless types sought him out to offer encouragement and tips on how to find work.
#4 Footloose Character
My 10-year reunion was done before it happened. Turns out, our class president (traditionally in charge of organizing) took a hard turn into a Footloose character after high school. However, some highlights of her event-planning included no music or dancing, even after a few classmates in a reasonably successful band offered to play for free.
Plus ones were to be spouses only. Two guys happily told her they'd bring their husbands, and she kicked them both from the Facebook page. The venue was also the high school's soccer field… in Iowa… in August. We were welcome to bring our own chairs. A few people offered to bring beanbags and bocce and similar games. She said no because it would make the reunion "too much like tailgating."
Her suggested entertainment was a guided tour of the school, which had undergone zero change since we graduated. Catering was from Hy Vee, which is a grocery store. Their food is actually okay, but, come on. The tickets were also $60. It was ultimately cancelled because out of our class of 300, less than 10 people bought tickets.
#5 Spilled Secrets
I had this friend who got someone pregnant back in the day and she kept the kid. They’ve both been great about it and he helps financially, but that was the extent of his contribution. She married soon out of high school and met a great guy who has been the de facto dad. Either way, it’s a day to bring your kids if you have them and someone let slip that my friend is that kid’s “real” dad. The kid heard it and it was a disaster. Everyone was trying to figure out who said that, and how could someone spill that secret, etc. In the end, my friend pretended he was shocked and laughed it off as a joke, which was probably a good move in front of the kid.
#6 KISS Reunion
It wasn't really bad, just odd. This one guy came with full Kiss-style makeup on. He actually showed up with a white face, black shapes around his eyes and black lips. We were too awkward and polite to really mention it, so everyone just chatted with him as though it was completely normal to turn up like that.
#7 I Was Proud
Someone told me, "You're not a failure, be yourself!" So I went and proudly told them what I was doing (working a $9.25/hr job, going back to school, having gotten life together, in rehab and back on track, I was proud!). They all pitied me and one dude tried to give me money. It made me feel bad about my current progress. I hate people.
#8 Raffle Tickets
Not so much at the reunion, but before it even happened. There was a 10-year reunion planned for my large school (500 graduates per year). The plan was for the reunion to take place over Thanksgiving weekend. To help pay for the expense, raffle tickets were sent out to the entire class to sell. The reunion didn't happen.
#9 The Oldest Kid
At my 10-year reunion, the organizers were doing the thing where they give "awards" for the person who came the farthest to attend, the person with the most kids, etc. The award came up for who had the oldest kid, and people started shouting out their kids' ages. When it quieted down, this shy girl near the front said in a normal voice, "11.” Then we all realized why we had stopped seeing Heather right before graduation.
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#10 John Smith
My sister, my (now) husband and I were all in the same graduating class. Plus, my husband's best friend. The best friend's name is something like "John Smith,” very common. He was very popular in high school as he was a super nice guy and stood out in a crowd. If you didn't know him, you certainly knew of him, even in a massive school.
The 20-year reunion rolled around and my sister was the only one who wanted to go. She called right after, very upset. Apparently, there was a huge memorial wall for John Smith, who had just passed away! None of us knew! My husband, though, was like, “Huh. But we just saw him?” He called him up and was like, "Hey dude, are you deceased?"
No. He was surprised, but didn’t lose his life. It turned out the much less popular other John Smith was the one who passed away. They made a lovely memorial for the wrong guy, who was forgotten entirely. We still run into people to this day who see him and are like "Hey… wait, weren’t you the guy who passed away?!"
#11 Everyone Was Confused
It's been a decade since I finished school. I saw an old classmate when he did maintenance work in my apartment block. About a year ago, he asked if I was going to the reunion organized by some of our classmates. I said no because I couldn't think of anything worse and also hadn't been invited. (Apparently, they organized it over Facebook, which I don’t have.)
When I next saw him six months later, I asked how the reunion was. He exasperatedly explained that it had been a real circus. The mean girls had started planning it together, fell out and then started each planning their own. So there were about four awful, tiny awkward parties and everyone was fairly confused.
#12 Carrying a Torch
At my 20-year reunion, two guys got arrested for fist fighting on the sidewalk outside the bar we went to Friday night. Why were they fighting? One of the guys slept with the other guy’s girlfriend in high school and brought up the 20 years ago fling. Neither of them married her or even dated her after high school. Those idiots got charges 20 years later for her, though.
#13 Is That Your Wife?
We'd been there less than an hour, having a great time and reconnecting. Suddenly an old friend approached and said, "Is that your wife over there? She's pretty tipsy." As we watched, she tripped and fell face-first and full-body crashed onto a 12 top table where many of my old classmates were sitting. The table broke, food and drinks flew everywhere, I walked over, scooped her up and half-carried her out the door. She took Xanax before going (unbeknownst to me) and was an addict who started slamming drinks as soon as she got there. So... good times.
#14 The Trainwreck
I didn't go to my 10-year, but my entire friend group did and they all called me asking where I was. While on the phone with one of them, he went “Uh oh, Brittany’s here". Brittany was a train wreck in high school and apparently hadn't changed in 10 years. She proceeded to get trashed, get in a fight with a waitress and did stuff in the bathroom. Police picked her up that night after she was found her passed out in the McDonald's bathroom.
#15 Pathetic Attempt
Not mine, but my husband's. It was the 10-year anniversary for high school graduates. The whole thing was really just sloppily slapped together and it was pretty clear the class wasn’t interested in getting together. The gathering place kept changing every couple weeks (this was updated via Facebook group by the way).
At first, it was renting a place and getting food catered and whatnot. Except it's pretty typical in my town for most people to not be successful, so asking people to cough up $200 to attend didn't work out. Venues kept downgrading to accommodate until they got down to having a bonfire out by the lake. It was BYOB, no fee, just come hang out for like, an hour.
Throughout the fiasco of finding a venue, a majority of the class declined to go. Some had to change status. There was a good handful still marked as going, but with everything changing and people obviously starting to tune out midway through. A lot of people forgot to change their status of going to not going.
Two people showed up. That was it. One was my brother, who had nothing better to do. The other guy that sort of help put it together showed up. The gal who set the whole thing up was pretty mad about it. The dude who helped posted a long rant on Facebook about how awful people were and how they should've appreciated the efforts it took just to hold the pathetic gathering.
My husband had me sit and flip through the page after everything was said and done. It was pretty obvious the gal was in serious denial the entire time, despite it being pretty clear nobody wanted anything to do with the event. I laughed at the rant, then honestly forgot about it until someone mentioned it.
#16 Severing Ties
Mine never happened. At our school, the class vice president or secretary was in charge of the reunion. The girl who was in charge returned, fresh off a divorce, to our alma mater a couple of years before the reunion as a teacher. At the end of her first year teaching, she ran off to Arizona with the captain of the tennis team. It was a huge scandal. All ties were severed with the school and the reunion was a casualty.
#17 Imposing the Topic
At the after-party for our reunion, there was this one guy who kept pounding more and more drinks. He eventually became tipsy enough to think it was a great time and place to discuss race relations with one of our black classmates. Well, not so much discuss as randomly impose the topic. The cringe nearly ruined us all.
#18 Check This Out
This was during our five-year reunion. One guy (always kind of a marginal figure in high school, but a nice person), after some sort of discussion, got his paycheck out. He then loudly said, “Now do you think I’m a loser? Don’t believe how much I make? Check this out” Of course, he just made things worse and everyone was laughing at him. I mean, he had his paycheck on him? I haven’t seen him since.
#19 You’re Not Invited
I went to a small reunion with my core group of college friends about five years after graduation. We all partied pretty hard in school but mellowed out in our late 20s. We decided to meet up for dinner at a local restaurant. One guy showed up, already wasted, with a duffle bag full of multiple packets of grass and the bottle he started before meeting us. He decided we were boring, finished his bottle in the restroom, and refused to come out. He ended up passing out there.
The bartender kicked him out. He came alone in an Uber and we had no idea where he lived. None of us wanted to take him to our places (he was angry, puking and belligerent), so we dropped him off at his last known address. It was his parents' house. Both of them answered the door, and we handed him over. It was past midnight and incredibly awkward. He's not invited to the next reunion.
#20 House Party
My husband invited the entire party to our home. The reunion was being held at a place you know; built to hold parties. Well, the majority of the people that were invited came so we had 100+ crammed into a 2500 square foot house. A bunch of them even decided to jump into our pool, which was ice cold. I was not pleased with my husband.
#21 Too Many Cooks
My class never got to the reunion part. Our class president was MIA. When they tried to plan our five-year reunion on Facebook, it devolved into people fighting over the venue and whether or not kids were allowed. Half the people wanted to get trashed and get away from their kids if they had any. The other half wanted a dry reunion in a local park with kids allowed.
Our class also had no money because they spent it on stupid nonsense senior year. That then started another debate over whether it would be catered or a potluck and how much they would collect from everyone if it was the former. In any case, I still wouldn’t have gone even if they'd managed to figure something out.
#22 Don’t I Know You?
At my 10-year high school reunion, we had a decent turnout of maybe 100+ people. We were at a pretty nice hotel banquet hall. There was one guy I had known all through high school and he was a well-known stoner. I'll call him Chris. I saw Chris walk into the banquet hall, stop in his tracks, turn around in a very slow 360-degree circle, surveying the entire room. He just said, "Whoa..." and he looked visibly alarmed.
He stopped and his eyes settled on me. I said, "Hey, Chris! Long time no see, man!" He kind of slid over to me and whispered in my ear, "This is really weird... I'm pretty sure I know every single person in this room." That was when I realized he was wearing the same clothes as all the banquet hall workers. Oh my God. Chris is working as a server at his own high school reunion and he has no clue what’s happening.
I walk him out to the front lobby and explained it was our 10-year high school reunion. He was mortified. He was never contacted and didn't even realize it had been 10 years since we graduated. He just knew he was working another catering gig in a neverending series of gigs. I made him take me to his manager. I explained what was happening and told the manager there was no way this guy was working his own high school reunion. Awesomely, the manager agreed. We found a different suit jacket and tie for him, and I take him back to the party. He ended up having a good night.
#23 Cooked Onions
This guy slammed some warn Natty Light during pong, then held his wrist up to this mouth as if it were coming back up. He then he projectile vomited. The best part is that all of it somehow shot forcefully from his fingers like Spiderman and we webbed everyone on that side of the room. It was full of cooked onions and it was amazing.
#24 The Look on His Face
Someone confessed to me that I was his “dream girl” with his fiancée as his date to the reunion. I barely knew the guy in high school. Unfortunately for his fiancé, she didn’t know anyone there and he refused to leave with her. He said “I’m not leaving with her, I’m leaving with you” to me. I told her to text me when their car was outside. Then I whispered, “Let’s go” in his ear, walked him out, and put him in her car. I’ll never forget the look on his face when he realized who was driving and I said, “Yeah, that’s how tonight is going to end.” But they still got married.
#25 Nothing Changed
When I was in 7th grade, this rich snob, John, grabbed a wool scarf that my mom knitted for me off my head. He threw the scarf into a pile of muddy leaves and jumped on it. When I went home that day, my mother was furious when she saw the torn, muddy scarf. She made me tell her who did it, then she called the school principal and yelled at him.
The next day, John got pulled into the principal’s office and paddled. That was back when they still paddled kids. 55 years later , at our 50th class reunion, John came up to me and angrily said, “You got me into trouble in seventh grade!” I got him in trouble? And he’s still mad about it, 55 years later. I said, “John you were a jerk in high school and you’re still a jerk.” Then I walked away.
#26 Admission Fees
The people who were supposed to plan our high school reunion dropped the ball, so I figured it wouldn't happen. But then this other dude from our high school stepped up to plan it. He was in a graduate program and also working part-time at a banquet hall. He said that his boss would give us the banquet hall space for free. It was a really nice gesture, and he seemed really into it. He had been miserable in high school. Grumpy, sullen, unpleasant, mean to other people. He came out in college, so maybe the weight of having to keep it a secret was part of why he was so unpleasant. Maybe he'd be more fun now.
I was working a bad job and had no savings at the time, so I was neither interested in having my former classmates pity me nor was I gunning to shell out a lot of money to attend. Plus my awful ex might be there and that didn't feel worth it. The organizer made a Facebook event and asked people to Venmo him the cost of admission prior to attending. He wanted something like $15-20 a head. It didn't really feel with paying for. Maybe if there would be some drinks included or something, I would go for an hour.
I sent him a private message asking what the admissions ticket covered. The space was free, after all. He posted publicly on the Facebook page that if the cost of admission was too steep, "message me and we can work out some financial aid." Uh, what? I then publicly posted, asking what the admission cost covered. No response. Other people asked too. He said it would go towards having a bartender and server dedicated to the event space, as well as towards food. Okay, fair.
Folks, he was the server . My friend showed up having not yet paid him, and he barred her entry. The people who had paid the admission cost showed up to an empty banquet hall, were given a menu by their former classmate and told to order their own food and drink from him. He pocketed the admission ticket money as his fee. After an hour, he brought out one grocery store sheet cake for 75 people to share. That was it.
#27 No Surviving Connection
No one came. I went to my 10-year reunion and it was admittedly a really small town, so my class was only 27 people. But only four people showed up and one was actually homeschooled. It kind of sucked. I was looking forward to seeing people and travelled from a long way away (3000 miles). It kind of jaded me towards my classmates. I'm not angry or anything. Just a realization that there really wasn't any connection that survived.
#28 Ruining the Night
I went to my partner’s five-year at the local Elk’s Lodge. He grew up in a really rich town, so it was super extravagant. The best part was the open bar until 9:00 p.m. and then cash afterwards. We were all having a great time until some loser snuck into the basement and stole a bunch of drinks (literally multiple boxes). When the bartenders found out at 8:30, they were furious and kicked us all out. They ruined what would have been an excellent night.
#29 The Popular Kids
My 10-year high school reunion was of course organized by the “popular kids.” The girls that still lived in our small hometown and were past their peak. They are really rotten people. I was actually in their group until they started bullying me in middle school. By the time our reunion rolled around, I believe, four, of our graduating class passed away.
At one point, they had us all sit down and dimmed the lights for a slide show that was in memorial for one of our lost classmates, the one they were good friends with. I was so furious I stormed out. Maybe it was because I was friends with another girl we lost. But how self-centered do you have to be to have a class reunion and at least not do some research and have a memorial for everyone gone?
#30 A Lost Chance
This was not my reunion, but my husband’s. In high school my husband was (and still is) a very reserved and quiet person. He doesn't tolerate nonsense, though. I call him my John Wayne. He’s also six years older than I am. We arrived at the venue and everyone was mingling. All of a sudden, a woman called out my husband's name and ran over. He introduced me and she lost her ever-loving mind.
Apparently, she had been in love with him since elementary school but hadn't ever said anything. She planned on asking him on a date that night. She had no idea he was married or that I was seven months pregnant. Then, she burst into tears and started yelling at me incoherently. Turns out, she was living with bipolar disorder and was also an addict at that time, which is why she reacted that way. We still choose to leave less than 20 minutes of arriving, though.
#31 One of You…
We had a teacher in high school who told us, "By the time you reach your 10-year reunion, at least one of your classmates will have passed away" during a discussion about mortality. The 10-year reunion arrived and nobody from our class did. Saturday night of the reunion, we were partying and having a good old time. One of the organizers got up to the microphone and was making some announcements. She got a blank look on her face and dropped to the floor. Brain aneurysm, she was gone before she hit the floor.
#32 Very Awkward
We have a very small school, so a reunion meant a handful of high school classes getting together at the new building for our school. The principal at the time I was there was the daughter of the founder of the school (she was super old) and her daughter (who had daughters of her own) worked as a teacher. All three generations were standing five feet or so from my group and we were actively making fun of the old principal for being racist. I think we were loud enough to be heard. My evidence? She was constantly glaring at our group the entire rest of the night. It was very awkward.
#33 Breaking the Ambiance
A girl took a substance with some of her friends, started going crazy and kissed a random guy in front of his boyfriend before spitting in his face. She then started yelling, "You small idiot, I never loved you.” I didn't know the guy but he cried and left the party immediately with his friends. That broke the ambiance for the rest of the night.
#34 Shell Out the Money
Someone who was considered a popular kid at my high school tried to organize our 10-year high school reunion on a cruise ship. I don’t know what they were thinking and apparently, everyone else thought the same. Obviously, no one wanted to shell out that kind of money, so the reunion never even happened for us.
#35 Warning Sign
Middle school, not high school. Me and a friend went exploring the school and went into the library which, was being renovated. We found an abandoned hallway and climbed a ladder to reach a walkway over the ceiling of the gym, with a stairway leading somewhere we didn't think was even part of the building. We opened the door to find… asbestos. Just a lot of asbestos. I don't even know what the room was, it just started falling like snow when we opened the door. Then my friend said, "Hey, there’s a sign that says WARNING: ASBESTOS. Maybe this stuff is asbestos?" And that’s the story of how I got mesothelioma.
#36 Definitely Interesting
I asked a classmate about her husband and she said some colorful things about him. They just got divorced. I asked another classmate about his kids. His wife left him and took the kids, unannounced. The special ed kids got tipsy and two of them started to fight over a girl. My high school ex got tipsy, pinned me against the wall and jammed her tongue down my throat right in front of my wife and her husband. Maybe not the worst night of my life, but it was definitely interesting.
#37 All the Details
At our five-year reunion, one dude had a three-way with my best friend and another girl. It’s hardly the worst thing, but he was in a relationship at the time and I had to hear about the details of it from my best friend. Apparently, his member was much smaller than anticipated. That’s the truly terrible part.
#38 A Rough Day
I didn’t attend, as I had moved far from my school. But in the process, I was emailing the organizer and wanted to get in touch with an old friend. I just figured that she could pass my message on. She had the misfortune of having to tell me he passed away at 30 from diabetes complications. It was a rough day and I didn’t even go.
#39 Crushed Car
My wife and I went to a former friend’s high school reunion at a brewery back in Michigan. The friend showed up after a bit and happened to be in the same graduating class as my wife. I didn't attend the same school. She got there and I asked how she had been. Her response was, "Really bad." She proceeded to tell me that she and her boyfriend split up, she has a low-paying job and so on. Also, it didn’t help that she really didn’t get along with most of her old classmates that attended.
The night went on and everyone was catching up and having a good time. My former friend said goodbye and went out to the parking lot to her car. She came back in saying someone ran over her car. Everyone assumed she meant someone hit her car. You know, like dented the bumper or something. Nope, someone with a truck or SUV literally ran over her car, drove on top of it, and took off.
#40 Going Undercover
I was sitting and having several drinks, catching up with an old classmate on one night of the reunion. One month later the news broke that the same person was arrested for luring a minor. Turns out, after they left the reunion that night, they went home and started chatting with the minor online. The minor was actually an undercover officer and had been having conversations with my classmate for a couple of weeks. This person had a family at home; ended up being sentenced to five years in prison.
#41 Pocket Scones
It was at a convention center and the college hockey game was next door. Once the game ended, some tipsy guy came in, started eating scones, went to the bar and pounded about five free drinks before security kicked him out. He stuffed scones in his pockets while being escorted out the door. I was never invited to my reunion, but hitting that reunion after the hockey game was awesome. I'll never forget the taste of those pocket scones.
#42 Personal Failures
My old bully, who I found stuffing shrimp into his pockets at the food table, seemed so ashamed of his personal failures. Compounded with the fact that I had recently been elected president, he broke down crying. Through his tears, he managed to beg for a cabinet position. Or at least that’s what will eventually happen.
#43 Loud Screaming
During our reunion, a social group of "cool people" I had cordial relations with during high school met up and were pretty happy about it. It somehow came out that all of them had been basically having intercourse together during high school... except one of them. He had always seemed like a core member of the group from the outside but was never clued into the fact that they were sleeping together for as long as they knew each other. There was some very eye-opening, loud screaming.
#44 Miss Musa
It was a five-year reunion. One of my former classmates attended with his girlfriend but disappeared and left her alone almost the entire time. We found him with Miss Musa, our old English teacher. Things went down and at the end of the fight, he left with Miss Musa and let the girlfriend leave alone. My friends and I felt so bad we followed her and gave her advice. Apparently, they'd been sleeping together since the 10th grade. Miss Musa was five years older than us. They’re still together, but both terrible people.
#45 Have it All Together
I had just had my baby a few months before and another girl just had twins around the same time. She was super high, inebriated and wouldn’t stop crying to me about how she was so jealous of how good of a mom I was to my daughter. I sat her down and told her about suffering from depression and anxiety after having my daughter and that it’s okay to not have it all together.
#46 Wrongfully Accused
Two people got caught hooking up in the bathroom. For some reason, word got around that it was a different dude than it actually was. That dude (who was wrongfully accused) decided to throw and shatter a glass mug on the ground on the way out. The next thing you know, we were all getting kicked out of the venue. The party continued at a different bar 20 miles away.
#47 Got the Confidence
One of my old classmates kept grabbing my butt and coming up behind me to hug me. I literally didn’t flirt with him prior or anything. We had just talked about how I had recently gotten married and had a baby, he was just recently divorced. It was awkward, but I did twist him and told him to never touch me again after I finally got the confidence. I’m a former victim.
#48 In Memoriam
A girl who didn't show had her picture on the "in memoriam" table with a candle lit. She didn't really keep up with anybody and everyone couldn't believe she was gone, but no one knew what had happened. That's because she was, in fact, not deceased and showed up about halfway through, much to the surprise of everyone else. It was like seeing an actual ghost. While she wasn't happy about it initially, it all ended as a funny story. Then she actually passed away a year later. Our 20th is next year and she'll be on that table again, but won't be showing up.
#49 Uncontrollable Sobbing
A close classmate of mine passed away before the reunion. I think they had his picture in a frame on a table. It was either that or reminiscing with fellow classmates that led me to uncontrollably sobbing in the arms of a woman I hadn’t seen since I was 18. I had to excuse myself and cry in a bathroom stall for the next 10 minutes. Yes, drinks were involved.
#50 Class President
I didn’t have a 10-year reunion. It was getting late in the year and I hadn’t heard anything, so I investigated. I found a Facebook group for the reunion where the last post was from May. Our class president had thrown a tantrum about how nobody had filled out her survey and she would have flown out to just see 10 of us. She also wrote, “YOU DON’T KNOW HOW HARD IT IS TO BE A MOTHER” and that’s why I didn’t vote for her in high school.