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18 Things You Can Never Understand Until They Happen To You

From being cheated on to seeing your child being born.

Today Reddit user Marcopolo325 posed this question to the Internet: What's something you can't understand until you've experienced it firsthand? Responses ranged from simple but true (shaving your legs) to profound (sexual abuse). Read the most thought-provoking answers below.

1. Putting on your first pair of glasses and realizing the world isn't supposed to be blurry.serhm

2. An abusive relationship. Sure, logic says to just leave that person, but it isn't that easy. The battle between brain and heart is very real. -Your_Wasted_Life

3. Depression. People always think that you can ignore it or snap out of it somehow or "look at the bright side" but it doesn't work like that. I wish more people would realize this.- strife24 andpunking_funk

4. Dropping acid, eating 'shrooms or rolling on E.Toby_O_Notoby

5. Heartbreak. Especially the first one. - paprikapants

6. Keeping sexual abuse a secret instead of telling an adult. A lot of people ask, "Why wouldn't they just tell someone?" Often these people fail to realize how much shame the victim feels and how fearful they are of it getting worse should their abuser find out they told. - AGuyYouNeverMet

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7. Seeing someone die in front of me. I see it on the Internet all the time with no reaction. -Deadpool2003

8. Watching someone give birth to your child. - SiouxBaru

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9. Coming out of the closet. Until you've done it you have no clue how hard it is. You're admitting it to others who will instantly judge you over something you have zero control over. Some people may even get violent. People will always see you as a lesser person because they think it's gross. - chrono14

10. The first time you DON'T feel pain after months (or years) of feeling constant chronic pain. I still can't describe it. It just felt odd. I had zero recollection of what feeling normal felt like. In a way, feeling "no pain" was a brand new feeling to me. - mythem

11. Being a parent. And I am not even one. I became an uncle a year ago, and my heart still weeps with joy every time I see my niece smile. I can't wait to be a dad. - IHateTheLetterF

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12. Having your SO cheat on you. I roll my eyes every time people who have never been cheated on describe exactly how they would respond to being cheated on. You cannot approach an analysis of an act of cheating without contextualizing it in a relationship. - Wrisx and ACAblackpanther

13. Circumcision. I'm sure you think, hey, it would hurt like a bitch to have someone cut off part of my penis. You cannot comprehend. I was 10 when it happened. I know there are a few others out there who had it when they were older. You just cannot comprehend... - PM_ME_UR_ponytail

14. Losing a parent. - Naweezy

15. Being a victim of violent crime. You may plan out some hypothetical situation in your head but when push comes to shove you may be clueless as to what you should do. When I was about 15 I was walking home with some friends and a group of guys came out and attacked us....The feeling of total helplessness and being at the mercy of your attacker is so frightening I can't even describe it. And watching my friends suffer and being able to do nothing adds to it. - scumbagscotti

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16. Gender dysphoria. Vanessajade84

17. Shaving your legs. To the uninitiated, they don't know the feel of fresh sheets on butter smooth skin, or coming out of a shower with almost no water left to dry off. Why? To look good? To be cool? I-uh-nah. - nklvh

18. Sex. I think you can figure out the mechanism, but an orgasm—you can't really get that shit down in words. - iam4real and TomRalphio


This article originally appeared on Minor edits have been made by the editors.