Have you ever noticed that families tend to develop their own ways of doing things and that some of those ways don't seem quite right to an objective observer?
We took to reddit to discover what exactly it is that makes some private behavior downright unpleasant to someone looking in. That doesn't mean that anything these families do is wrong, but their behavior is a little bit creepy.
We hope that you don't find any of your own family's unique habits in this list of 25 bizarre private family behaviors that upset the users of reddit (and us too).
1. Motherly Love
House of Retro
It may be possible to overdo motherly love as /u/NotABoss0814 shares: "I hung out and played with these 3 siblings. They were all pretty normal kids, but the mom seemed kind of clingy. She had mandatory cuddle time with each of the kids. They would lay on the couch, and she would spoon them, in the quiet, for about 30 minutes each. Weirdest thing I've ever encountered."
2. Too Much On Display
Some families have a tendency to overshare as /u/SamSammy1988 discovered: "My Long time friend growing up, she and her sister would walk around their house completely naked in front of their little brothers, dad and uncle... We were 15 at the time."
3. Silent Shame
/u/berinnaa disturbed something she shouldn't have: "There was a family of girls I went to church with and none of them were allowed to cut their hair. They also weren't allowed to talk at the dinner table. The mom was afraid of one of them choking and dying, so talking was banned. No one told me that when I came over for dinner. I just talked and they all stared at me."
4. Indelicate Grace
/u/rssmitty13 witnessed something to make her panic: "I was at my SO's house, and her mom was cooking and said, 'I think it's about that time.' Immediately the entire family started mumbling something I couldn't understand. After they finished and saw the look on my face, my SO said they just said grace, but everybody is in a rush to eat which is why I couldn't hear what they were saying. I thought they were going to sacrifice me."
5. Social Slacking
Men of the West
/u/babagunoosh2 discovered something wrong in their neighborhood: "Encouraging their teen daughters to have kids as early and as often as possible because then they could live off welfare and child support and wouldn't need to work."
6. Suffer In Silence
We're happy we didn't get invited on this day out. /u/galaxydrift says: "I went on a road trip with a friend's family one time. It was a 5 hour drive, and the entire time, no one spoke. It was completely silent. No music, no talking, nothing. And even though they had drank tons of liquids before getting in the car, no one had to pee during that 5 hour drive. Weirdest and most unsettling drive of my life."
7. Loose Grip On Sanity
This is just not OK. /u/Nuclearshadow shares, "I was once asked to witness an exorcism by a family. The young son suffered from mental illness but they thought it was demons. I decided to go for two reasons. Curiosity, and with how crazy it sounded I thought maybe if it gets too extreme someone sane should be there to step in and stop it. This family isn't even Catholic either."
8. Ashen Lunch
We wonder why this girl is /u/slaytallica36's ex? "I have an ex whose family would literally burn any meat they cooked for dinner. Chicken, fish, steak all completely burned. They were terrified about bacteria on their food. I got them to cook my steak medium well (less burned, but still above well) once but I got some serious looks of disgust."
9. The Big Doll's House
/u/OW1's friends were slightly odd. "A friend from high school theater used to invite me over to her family's house all the time. Her mom collected large vintage dolls, like child-sized ballerinas, Victorian girls, and this one overly-happy clown. They'd dress it up in their own clothing and place it around the house like it was a family joke that it was "alive"."
10. Recycling Gone Too Far
We'll pass on a wash at /u/psyclopes' friend's house: "I used to have to go overnight to my babysitter's house since my dad worked the midnight shift. When it came time for a bath, they would run the water, Dad would have a bath, then mom, then the oldest girl, then the two little ones. Without ever draining and running new water. They would just each bathe in each other's dirty water."
11. Tuning Out
/u/bacon_cake's friend is both rude and creepy: "I went to a friends house and we put some cartoons on. While we were watching I asked him a question but he didn't respond, he was fixated on the TV, absolutely glued. His childminder just laughed 'oh he'll be like that all evening now'. So I just had to wait for my parents to pick me up whilst he unflinchingly watched TV for hours …"
12. Collecting Compulsion
/u/EastLondon was concerned about this: "I knew a girl in high school who had parents who were obsessed with dinner plates. They had such a huge collection of collectible plates in their house that every room was full of them on display. Their entire house was basically a library set up for these things. Her bedroom was a mattress on the floor surrounded by display cases of plates. You couldn't even lean on any wall, they were all like this."
13. Awful Eating Habits
/u/epolenep88 was not a fan of her friend's family's food habits. "Went to a friend's house when I was 17. She asked her mom for a snack and her mom brought out a huge raw white onion completely slathered in mayo on a plate and she and my friend just went at it with their forks like it was filet mignon." Yuck.
14. Dining At The Omen
Den of Geek
/u/MostLegit shares the strangest of dining traditions. "I went on vacation with my buddy when we were kids. They weren't religious but before ever meal they would all say the same chant about being a better person and trying your best. It was really creepy because they would all say it in the same monotone voice."
15. Dining Ritual
We wonder if /u/murderousbudgie had interrupted some sort of ritual? "Not drinking anything with dinner. They would have dinner, then after dinner, someone would bring out a pitcher of water and glasses and they'd sit around the table, all drink their glasses of water without talking, put them down, and walk away."
16. Take A Lickin'
/u/tfdoido has a truly weird story: "
Okay. Brace yourselves.
I went on a picnic/barbecue thing with this family. Mom, dad, three or four kids, i don't remember. We light the barbecue and start preparing food. The main attraction is chicken wings. Yum. The wings are covered in sauce. They are placed on the barbecue and the mother tends to them. After a forever, the food is ready. She brings the huge platter of chicken wings, sets them on the blanket. Everyone is taking plates, fixing drinks for themselves etc. The woman picks up a chicken wing. Holds it with two hands, as you do, and starts licking it. She's licking it, turning it over, keeps licking. I think, 'umm weird, but okay.' Then she puts it back on the platter. I am stunned. She picks up another one. Does the same. Puts it back. All the while, she's talking. Saying things like 'alright kids, come on, get your chicken wings, eat.' As if... she's preparing the wings for our consumption by licking them. I am still in shock. I can't say anything. I'm looking at everyone else. No one, none of them is reacting. There is no sign on anyone's faces that something weird is going on. She licks and licks and licks and they just eat it.
I had salad that day."
17. Stool Pigeon
Redditor /u/TheCosmicCoasta writes, "I went to this guy's house once after school. I wasn't friends with him, but we were assigned to a project together. We'll call him Gary. Anyways, we were working on this project when he excused himself to use the restroom. 15 minutes later he returned. A little while later, I decided to use the restroom while he was making snacks.
I walked into the bathroom and behold! Before my eyes, floating like a manatee through the brown estuaries of Florida, was the result of Gary's earlier bathroom excursion. I shrugged it off - I mean, we all forget at least once, right? - flushed for him, took a leak, flushed again, and went to work on the project.
Gary's mom gets home from work a couple hours later. She nods to us and says hello politely before heading towards the back of the house. A few seconds later she returns to the kitchen where we were working and screams 'WHERE IS IT?' I jump and am confused, so I shoot a [puzzled] look to Gary. Gary muttered 'It wasn't me.' His mom glared at me, huffed, and walked out.
Gary later explained that every day after school he would take a dump and was required to leave it in the toilet so his mom could check it. He wasn't even sick or anything - she just wanted to check it to make sure he was healthy or something.
I never went back to Gary's house. We were 16/17 at the time. I failed to realize this makes it all the weirder."
18. Extreme Paranoia
Twins and Co. Realty
Fear makes people do weird things, like /u/alasicannotgrin's friend's family. "An old friend's mum was completely paranoid that Al Qaeda would storm the small British town they lived in... Her solution? Have a massive bomb shelter built under their house. Not the weird part, though. About about 5 times a year, she would spend literally thousands and thousands of pounds on groceries to stock the shelter with. By this, I mean she would genuinely buy out the whole supermarket (it would take her about 20 trips over a week). Not just canned food, but perishables, too... I only found this out by sleeping over on one of her 'shopping' days, where food covered literally every single surface of their massive house. My friend just shrugged it off and was 'oh, yeah, just restocking our bomb shelter! We always need to be ready for invasion.'"
19. Infinite Loop
Every family has traditions, but /u/Happykittykat definitely saw the tsranger side of that. "Something that I have witnessed for years only began to hit me as the realization slowly unfolded. A family that I visited frequently with all adult children who still live with their parents would coincidentally always have the same exact movie on every single time I visited. They all huddle around as though they are only watching it for the first time. Once, when I actually stayed over for a longer duration, when the movie finally ended, The TV was finally turned off only to be turned on again and the play button was then pressed for the same movie, I finally realized that this movie is watched multiple times a day, every single day, almost like a ritual and all the members of the family react the same way to the same scene repeatedly as if they have never seen it before. For all those asking what movie, it was called 'Just Ask My Children.'"
20. The Golden Child
/u/sonia72quebec recalls, "I went to elementary school with this really nice girl. She was the eldest of 4 girls, all perfectly healthy and beautiful. Kids were laughing at her because she was smelling really bad. I talk to her about it and she told me that her Mother makes her wear the same cloths for a week before washing them.
Her Mother was really busy praying to have a son. She was in the Church at 6am every morning and spend a lot of time there, always praying to have a son. Well the 'miracle' happened and she had a son. That's all they could talk about. It was like Jesus himself was reborn. It was weird.
Maybe 2-3 years ago I saw her in the bus. The first thing she told me (after not seeing each other for maybe 30 years) was 'Did you know I have a brother?' I was speechless…"
/u/cleanout once dated a guy who took his love for family maybe just a touch too far... "My ex boyfriend used to call his mom whenever he was stressed so that she could assure him that everything would be ok. He used to send her messages like 'Is everything going to be ok, mom?' and she'd reply with 'Don't worry, you'll be ok.' He was 28 at the time. He also gave her all his passwords so she could access his bank accounts and take care of his finances. And he got sent to a really cool destination for work for two weeks and spent the entire time moping about how much he missed his family. I love my parents and all, but come on..."
22. Neal's Lame Party
The Siren's Tale
/u/losnardos recalls, "There was a weird kid in my neighbourhood named Neal. He had a club foot. That's not what was weird it's just sort of memorable.
Anyway we were invited to his birthday party down the street. His parents sent invites that we were to bring a present and ten dollars to cover the costs of hosting the party.
My mom was annoyed and confused but sent us with the presents and the money. We had to give the money to Neal's parents before they let us in the house. We were each given one water balloon to throw, and exactly one slice of cake. Then we gave this kid his present and his parents sent everybody home after maybe half an hour."
23. No Locks
Privacy seems to be a relative issue for some families, as /u/jackgrafter learned firsthand. "I had a friend whose family would never close, let alone lock the door even when taking a shit, so he'd be curling one out and his parents would come in and brush their teeth or whatever as if it was normal. I burst in on his mother having a piss one time and she just said 'won't be a minute.' Whaaaat?
I get that some families do this, it's just odd to me that they would carry on even when there are guests in the house."
24. A Little Too Strict
/u/nderhjis had an especially bad experience with one friend's family: "Uhhhh, this is actually abuse, and my mom did call CPS on them, but I'll say it anyway.
We knew a family growing up that the father would time their showers, literally 15 seconds under cold water, he would stand there and watch and then grab them out, one after the other.
They were not allowed to poop in the house. He had toilet paper for emergencies and guests. If they HAD to poop, he would pass them 5 squares of TP total, and watch them wipe. They trained themselves to only poop at school and church.
Summer would get to be 100 and still not air or fans in their bedroom, no open windows.
Probably about 20 more insane rules. Weird food rules. Very very very sad."
25. Life Of Distractions
What /u/EdajimaHeihachi experienced at a friend's house sounds like something out of a dystopian movie: "I remember it was when Euro 2004 happened. I went to a friend's house for a sleepover. I was 12 years old then. So we go to his house where his and my mom dropped us there and left. His dad was there though. I never liked this man. Anyway, he welcomed us with the most unwelcoming manner, like he hated to have me for sleepover. We proceeded to his room, and played on his PS2. After half an hour, his dad enters the room and says 'Ok I think its about time Michael (my friend)."
So Michael sits up and unplugs the PS2 and hands it to his father, who takes it and places it on top of a high shelf. Then, the dad makes a hug gesture, like welcoming Michael to hug him, saying 'Speak the words' and Michael hugs his father saying 'Thanks father for reminding me to be moderate with distractions from the real life.'
The hug ends, he nods us to go to sleep. I went to sleep totally weirded out due to the happening, and cause my child brain back then felt bad for playing PS2 like it was bad.
The next morning we wake up, eat and greet his mother who was there. Michael goes to his father and knees before him and says 'Please father can I be distracted for a while?' His mother was making coffee like it was totally normal to have her son knee in front of her husband and beg for his joy as if it was a sin. His father looks at me, then to Michael and goes and brings down the PS2 like it was the worst thing he had to do.
I didn't even touch the controller. I was totally uncomfortable in there.
Never slept over there again.
The nice thing about stories like this is that they make you realize how lucky you are that you family isn't all that wierd.