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When your gut feeling is Wrong


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I'm curious to hear stories from y'all about times when your gut feeling was dead wrong about a situation or a person.  I can find a lot of stories from people who have "trusted their gut" and been validated. I have plenty of those types of stories, myself. But I can only remember one or two times when my gut feeling about a situation was dead wrong.  It makes me wonder whether I've got some kind of confirmation bias going on.  

  

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I can't think of a time when my gut lied to me.

There have been times when I didn't listen and regretted it though ....

I have a friend who insists that she is the best reader of people, but when her "reading" and my "gut" don't line up, sooner or later she's disappointed in that person.

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38 minutes ago, SKL said:

I can't think of a time when my gut lied to me.

There have been times when I didn't listen and regretted it though ....

I have a friend who insists that she is the best reader of people, but when her "reading" and my "gut" don't line up, sooner or later she's disappointed in that person.

Never?

You've never misread someone, where you've first thought "This person is full of doo doo" and then later realized you were wrong or being overly critical?

Or has it only been the reverse, where you thought someone was ok and then later realized they were full of doo doo? 

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I think there is definitely confirmation bias in our remembering when our gut was correct.  I think there is also some definitive time when we can usually point to of "see my gut was right" but when our gut was wrong it is a much slower king of realization.  

I had one boss that I initially had a good gut feeling for.  He seemed to be a highly ethical, thoughtful person; in the end I did not trust him at all.  

My uncle married someone whom I did not have a good gut feeling about.  Some other family members felt the same way.  I thought I would never have much to do with her, and would definitely never consider her an "aunt".  She is now one of my favorite people who I admire greatly and would like to be more like.  In many ways she has been more of a grandparent to my children than their own grandmother has been.  

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Don't know about the 'gut feeling' thing - it might mean different things to different people. I can definitely remember lots and lots of times when my initial reaction to something was 'this is a scam' or 'this is bad data' or 'this won't work' . . .  and I was absolutely wrong. Lots of times! I remember a friend getting a special product to help her child stop bedwetting, and I assured her it probably wouldn't work. It did, really quickly!

In terms of getting an initial gut feeling about a person - I have never got an initial gut feeling of 'this guy is a serial killer!' or anything. But hey, maybe I just haven't met one yet. 

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Many divorces would be an example of this.

Also, how many times has someone committed a crime and all of the neighbors/co-workers say he/she was a good person.

It happens a lot, imo.

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I feel like I can't trust my gut and that I'm always wrong about people.  I'm a really gullible person, so maybe that's why?  I will usually ask DH and/or dd for their opinions if they are involved because they have good track records and I really don't.

 

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I can’t recall many times, but I can say that I am very close friends with two people I absolutely, positively did not think I’d ever hit it off with. My instinct just said no, and now I miss being able to hang out with them! But that’s a positive example, so it’s still a sort of bias.

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I usually feel that I read people pretty early on in our relationships.  Not that I know their life stories or anything, but just that I have a good sense of the person.  I had a mom friend that was so good at getting people to believe her fake front, that nobody had any idea what she was doing in private and at home.  When we finally found out that what she was showing in public was so fake and what was really going on at home I was in total shock.   I even left my kids alone with this person and I hadn't ever done that with anyone besides family.   I still can't get over that.   It really scared me too. 

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I can think of times my first impressions on people weren't accurate,  or later that person grew on me.  I don't think that's what a gut feeling is.  For me, a gut feeling would be a situation that I felt uncomfortable with- could be people involved, but its about the situation and I feel like I need to not be there.  The handful of times its happened,  I left.  

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15 minutes ago, mommyoffive said:

I usually feel that I read people pretty early on in our relationships.  Not that I know their life stories or anything, but just that I have a good sense of the person.  I had a mom friend that was so good at getting people to believe her fake front, that nobody had any idea what she was doing in private and at home.  When we finally found out that what she was showing in public was so fake and what was really going on at home I was in total shock.   I even left my kids alone with this person and I hadn't ever done that with anyone besides family.   I still can't get over that.   It really scared me too. 

Are you just, like, gonna leave us wondering what the heck she was doing?

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It makes me wonder whether I've got some kind of confirmation bias going on.  

Of course you do. We all do. We remember the times we were right, and tend to forget or deemphasize the times we were wrong - not to mention all the times when we were wrong but never found out. (Like, if my "gut feeling" tells me to get out of an elevator with a sketchy dude, and it turns out he's not sketchy at all - well, I'll never know, will I? Because I waited for the next elevator!)

Your "gut feeling" is your subconscious putting information together faster than your conscious brain can process it. It's helpful enough that we all have it - but in the end, your subconscious isn't really any smarter than you are. (And to make it worse, your subconscious has all the biases you try not to have consciously - like trusting people of your own race more than people of those other races. This can screw you up in two different ways.)

I'm not saying you should make a habit of not trusting your instincts, but don't imagine that your gut feeling is magically able to detect the Reek of Wrongness when your nose can't.

Edited by Tanaqui
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1 hour ago, bookbard said:

In terms of getting an initial gut feeling about a person - I have never got an initial gut feeling of 'this guy is a serial killer!' or anything. But hey, maybe I just haven't met one yet. 

I pretty much never get gut feelings about people, but I did have the instant "would not be surprised at all if this person were a serial killer" gut-punch about exactly one person.  Weirdest thing.  It was at college and we were in the same major, so we had a lot of classes together.  Minus the gut feeling, he was a pretty nice guy and we were friendly acquaintances, actually <shifty> - I mean, I'd not have gone anywhere alone with him (seemed like the bare minimum logical reaction given the gut feeling), but we tended to chat before/after class and such, usually with another acquaintance.  I never really knew what to make of the sheer contrast between his generally likeable nature and that gut feeling, and mostly ignored it, albeit uncomfortably.  The gut feeling never really went away, though; it dulled if we spent regular time together, but would hit with full strength after an absence.  And it hit like a freight train at the thought of introducing him to my little sister.  But I still have no idea if my feeling was actually justified - never saw or wondered about anything in particular, even with the feeling putting me on guard.

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I have plenty of times my “gut feeling” was right.  It’s easy to look back and think that thought. It feels good.

It’s harder to feel disappointed or hurt by a friend, heartbroken over a friendship ending, or hurt in some other way and think, “wow, my gut feeling about x was wrong.”  We just don’t notice in the same way.  

Confirmation bias.

I can think of lots of times people didn’t turn out to be who/what I thought they were.  

I can think of several times I left a situation because I did not feel safe, but will never know if my fears were correct.

Oh!  And the time I was traveling and I and my fellow artist/roomie returned to find our hotel room door open.  Roomie figured the staff didn’t shut the door all the way.   I was positive someone was in there.  We called the police, of course. The room was fine.  Nothing taken, nothing moved, no one in there. I guess you could say my gut was wrong, though I stand by the common sense of getting it checked.

 

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This is really hard bc for me when my gut has been wrong - it really wasn’t. I can look back and see oh daaamn now it makes sense. 

I have been blind-sided.   I don’t think my gut lied to me. I think my basic need for self preservation made it impossible for me to see what was happening until it hit me in the gut like a Mack truck.

Afterwards? I can see how my gut was giving me a dot-to-dot that I could not see until I was standing outside of it looking at the connections. That’s so incredibly hard to do when you are IN the thick of it all.

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Just now, Tanaqui said:

 (Like, if my "gut feeling" tells me to get out of an elevator with a sketchy dude, and it turns out he's not sketchy at all - well, I'll never know, will I? Because I waited for the next elevator!)

This is the most common situation when my "gut" tends toward paranoia unnecessarily.

I often like going grocery shopping very, very late at night or very, very early in the morning. It is dark and the parking lot is deserted, and my "gut" often gets very nervous if I have to walk past someone...normally a larger, male someone. But logically I know that I live in an incredibly safe area and that the vast majority of people in that grocery store parking lot at night are there doing exactly the same thing I am, and certainly mean me no harm. Statistics tell me that, despite what my gut is screaming, almost every person I run into (in the parking lot and in life in general) is a "good guy", whose presence actually increases my safety, who would run to my aid in a heartbeat if I suddenly had a seizure or got hit by a careless driver in the dark.

There is one other time that my gut really led me astray. My aunt got married when I was about 10, and from the first time I met her new husband, he struck me as "off". I was uncomfortable talking to him, and he seemed a bit creepy. Well, 30 years later, I'm pretty convinced he is a good guy...a good guy who I now suspect edges toward the autism spectrum. So, in a way he is "off", but not in a threatening, creepy way, but just a non-neurotypical, quirky way. Except, I don't think "guts" are normally that nuanced. Our "gut", our lizard brain, tends to equate different with threatening...different race, different culture, different mannerisms, different religion, different clothing style, different behaviors. But my higher-order thinking tells me that almost always different is just different, and that letting my gut tell me it is threatening is doing everyone a disservice.

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1 hour ago, forty-two said:

I pretty much never get gut feelings about people, but I did have the instant "would not be surprised at all if this person were a serial killer" gut-punch about exactly one person.  Weirdest thing.  It was at college and we were in the same major, so we had a lot of classes together.  Minus the gut feeling, he was a pretty nice guy and we were friendly acquaintances, actually <shifty> - I mean, I'd not have gone anywhere alone with him (seemed like the bare minimum logical reaction given the gut feeling), but we tended to chat before/after class and such, usually with another acquaintance.  I never really knew what to make of the sheer contrast between his generally likeable nature and that gut feeling, and mostly ignored it, albeit uncomfortably.  The gut feeling never really went away, though; it dulled if we spent regular time together, but would hit with full strength after an absence.  And it hit like a freight train at the thought of introducing him to my little sister.  But I still have no idea if my feeling was actually justified - never saw or wondered about anything in particular, even with the feeling putting me on guard.

You totally need to google him and see if he became a serial killer.

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I find that guts are especially bad when we have innate biases. And most of us have innate biases. For example, one thing I've seen very often is people telling me that they had a bad gut feeling (or something similar) about a person who turns out to be neuroatypical. Like, the person's gut is telling them that something is "off" and they interpret that to mean the person is a possible abuser or serial killer or something when the actually the person is on the autism spectrum or something. 

A lot of people in authority use their gut feeling to decide whether a person should be there or should be questioned, whether a person is up to no good and needs to be assessed as a threat, etc. Except, we know those gut feelings lead to more violent outcomes when law enforcement, security guards, neighborhood watch, school officials, etc. etc. deal with people of color.

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I generally consistently misread people. 
 

Once in a parking lot about 3.5 years ago, a young man from the high school got into my passenger side of my van. He began to yell and swear at me. I was convinced he had mistaken me for someone else. He told me he was going to hurt me, slammed my metal travel cup into the side of my head, and likely would have really hurt me if one of his caretaker hadn’t opened my door and told me to leave....

He was a serious anger management case, had pulled a fire alarm, escaped through three adults, and apparently I was an available target. The police were already on their way by the time he got in my van. 
 

But it really confirmed to me how people are hurt. I would have told you I had a fight response over flight. Turns out I have a “sit and reason” response. My dad was recently talking about getting a gun permit. He said for protection. My dad owns guns and always has because he hunts. That said, there was a flaw in his thought process. You see, someone with the intent to hurt goes to the setting with a plan to execute. The person answering the door automatically, by walking to the door, must make one of two presumptions. Either A) This person has come to hurt me (take protection) or B) this person will likely not hurt me. I’m either of these scenarios, they’ve made a decision based on gut/naïveté/pessimism, etc.  But they are at a distinct disadvantage. I am shocked at the person who says my gut is never wrong. I tend to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, regardless of first impressions. And, yes, it’s bit me a couple times. 
 

 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

You totally need to google him and see if he became a serial killer.

Uh. Do serial killers advertise openly on the internet?

She can google him but that is only going to tell her what he might have been caught at.

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There is so much mixed up in this thread.

Guts aren’t wrong bc we didn’t or couldn’t avoid a bad situation.  Just like my eyesight or reasoning skills aren’t bad if I notice traffic is bad but still end up getting rear ended. 

smart people do stupid things

people who love each other can be horribly cruel 

people can have great instincts and still be betrayed or hurt 

There’s a reason we say hindsight is 20/20. 

 


 

 

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6 hours ago, MissLemon said:

Never?

You've never misread someone, where you've first thought "This person is full of doo doo" and then later realized you were wrong or being overly critical?

Or has it only been the reverse, where you thought someone was ok and then later realized they were full of doo doo? 

Maybe it's because I generally don't judge a person until I know them better.  So I'm neutral on most people at first.  But there are some people who just give me a bad (or sometimes good) vibe, and it ends up being justified.  Or I can tell they are lying when others can't.  There have also been situations that gave me a good or bad vibe.  I'm usually risk-averse, but a few times when I've felt like something was a really good bet, I was right.

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I have one that’s kind of the opposite where I didn’t have any kind of gut feeling about a person and they turned out to be pretty evil.  It shakes your trust in your own judgement for sure.  On the other hand I’ve been totally right about other people.

I would say we all have our biases.  Gut feeling can be based on previous life experiences or patterns and sometimes they can be wrong but it’s worth paying attention to it and figuring out if there’s a reason why you feel that way.

Dhs closes friend is someone who he thought was an idiot and I didn’t think I was interested in Dh the first time I saw him.

Edited by Ausmumof3
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4 hours ago, Farrar said:

I find that guts are especially bad when we have innate biases. And most of us have innate biases. For example, one thing I've seen very often is people telling me that they had a bad gut feeling (or something similar) about a person who turns out to be neuroatypical. Like, the person's gut is telling them that something is "off" and they interpret that to mean the person is a possible abuser or serial killer or something when the actually the person is on the autism spectrum or something. 

A lot of people in authority use their gut feeling to decide whether a person should be there or should be questioned, whether a person is up to no good and needs to be assessed as a threat, etc. Except, we know those gut feelings lead to more violent outcomes when law enforcement, security guards, neighborhood watch, school officials, etc. etc. deal with people of color.

Yes!  Gut feeling results in a lot of prejudiced behaviour sometimes!

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As a kind of an aside, does anyone else ever get that kind of feeling but about places?  I had a childhood friend where I felt fine with the people but something felt wrong about the house, like it was dark or closed off somehow.  It turned out later that abuse had been happening there 😞 

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Never.  I’ve convinced myself I was being mean about a person, gave them the benefit of the doubt, and then later wished I’d trusted my intuition many times though. 
 

There have also been times I found someone suspicious based on behavior, not intuition, and later found out they were intellectually disabled, or from a different culture where whatever they were doing wasn’t so weird. But that’s different than intuition. 

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3 hours ago, Ausmumof3 said:

As a kind of an aside, does anyone else ever get that kind of feeling but about places?  I had a childhood friend where I felt fine with the people but something felt wrong about the house, like it was dark or closed off somehow.  It turned out later that abuse had been happening there 😞 

Yes, though usually if I think about it I can figure out if the feeling is from the place itself being creepy or sometimes it’s literally the paint color making me anxious. 

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I don't listen to my gut. I'm too optimistic and I always want to believe everyone is a good person. I'm a tad naive I suppose. So I never try to judge people until I get to know them. Also, I have tons of anxiety, so my "gut feeling"is usually wrong because I'm always certain the very worst thing will happen and just about everything turns out better than I felt it would.

Now my husband, holy cow guys, he can read people so well it's crazy.

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4 hours ago, Ausmumof3 said:

I have one that’s kind of the opposite where I didn’t have any kind of gut feeling about a person and they turned out to be pretty evil.  It shakes your trust in your own judgement for sure.  On the other hand I’ve been totally right about other people.

I would say we all have our biases.  Gut feeling can be based on previous life experiences or patterns and sometimes they can be wrong but it’s worth paying attention to it and figuring out if there’s a reason why you feel that way.

Dhs closes friend is someone who he thought was an idiot and I didn’t think I was interested in Dh the first time I saw him.

I have twice had positive initial first impressions of men who turned out to be sex offenders, on the registry for crimes against children. But I’ve had strong gut warnings about people that I never had any proof one way or the other about, and gut feelings about someone who I eventually began  to trust, and it turned out that my initial gut warnings were totally justified.,  Basically, I’ve decided that people just can’t be trusted. Some of them are really good at pretending to be what they’re not.

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8 hours ago, BlsdMama said:My dad was recently talking about getting a gun permit. He said for protection. My dad owns guns and always has because he hunts. That said, there was a flaw in his thought process. You see, someone with the intent to hurt goes to the setting with a plan to execute. The person answering the door automatically, by walking to the door, must make one of two presumptions. Either A) This person has come to hurt me (take protection) or B) this person will likely not hurt me. I’m either of these scenarios, they’ve made a decision based on gut/naïveté/pessimism, etc.  But they are at a distinct disadvantage. I am shocked at the person who says my gut is never wrong. I tend to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, regardless of first impressions. And, yes, it’s bit me a couple times. 

 

The story about the young man trying to harm you is scary!  
 

Your comments about your dad and a gun reminded me of the time a man rang my door bell at 6 a.m minutes after my then husband left for work.  He had drilled in to my head to not answer the door without knowing who it was......so  I didn’t.I spoke through the window and told him I was sorry I couldn’t let him use my phone and suggested a convenience store  a block away.  After he walked away and he thought I couldn’t see him he cut back and went to the window where moments before I had been sitting at my make up table getting ready for work. I freaked out, he realized I saw him and he ran away.  The police couldn’t find him.

When I told that story to my BIL he was horrified.  And he said, See there that is why you need a gun!   I was like......Um to do what with? Open the door and shoot a man asking to use the phone?  Because if he meant me harm and I had opened that door.....a gun in my bed side table would have done me no good. 
 

A year or so later, I discovered that man was a well known peeping Tom. He had never been known to harm anyone. But I am still glad I did not answer my door. 

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Am I the only one here who doesn't have gut feelings? I have bumbled my way through life without ever having such a feeling about a person. I have seen interactions that I think "That's a funny reaction/expression.", and it's turned out to have reasons (abuse, etc), but I didn't feel anything toward the persons involved at the time. Maybe I am just oblivious? Maybe I am just too wound up in my own thoughts to have my subconscious think about strangers? I don't know. I can't think of any time I've had a gut feeling.

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10 hours ago, Murphy101 said:

She can google him but that is only going to tell her what he might have been caught at.

True.  Still, it might be enlightening. I Googled high school classmates and discovered one was in prison for trying to murder his wife.  

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I sometimes have a gut reaction to people when I first meet them, but don’t entirely trust it. I am a cautious person by nature and though I can be politely chatty, and willing to initially assume the best of others, a person has to show themselves authentic and reliable over time as I get to know them. It’s kind of weird now that I think about it - I don’t believe I’m a suspicious of everything sort - but maybe more than I realized? All that to say that I don’t find myself immediately sizing people up. I guess I’ve known enough Eddie Haskells to learn that time and truth walk hand in hand. People gain various levels of trust from me over time. I find that I’m not usually surprised when once in a while a person shows their true colors.
 

Now I’ll probably spend the rest of the day wondering how I came to be so wary of new people. 
 

I think that DeBecker/Gift of Fear level of gut reaction is a different level thing. There are definitely situations and unexpected people encounters that trigger it. More of an acute situational awareness, and usually when I, at some level, know that where I am or what I am doing is risky at some level (as mentioned upthread, grocery shopping at 5am when it’s still dark out).

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11 hours ago, wendyroo said:

 

 

 

There is one other time that my gut really led me astray. My aunt got married when I was about 10, and from the first time I met her new husband, he struck me as "off". I was uncomfortable talking to him, and he seemed a bit creepy. Well, 30 years later, I'm pretty convinced he is a good guy...a good guy who I now suspect edges toward the autism spectrum. So, in a way he is "off", but not in a threatening, creepy way, but just a non-neurotypical, quirky way. 

I think that this is why my dds and dh think someone we know is a psychopath or something like that- though he has done nothing wrong, and they still interact very much with this person.  It is true that he is acting fake.  But in his descriptions about his life  and in my much more accurate reading of people, I think he is in a position where people expect the person to be social, he is trying his best to do so, but you know he is not saying the truth a lot of the time just because of the position-  He can't just go right out and say to a person who looks to him for leadership- you are full of _____/  

What is strange to me is my dd is doing very much the same thing-   trying to fit in socially by going to girly watching parties of some dumb show she hates,  going to parties where the conversations are inane, etc.  

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No, but the feelings I get about dangerous or people that are off are very rare-  and in more than one case, I ignored them and that was the wrong thing to do.  

The first time was when I was in jr high and I passed a boy I had never seen with the deadest eyes I have seen in real life- and that includes my tutoring prisoners who weren't psychopaths.  I told my friend about it and we found out he was a new student.  Later, we found out that he had come from juvenile detention and was going back to some sort of prison.  

Next time was when I was choosing a part time preschool/daycare.  Got a weird vibe from the director but ignored the warning.  Turned out we had to remove our son because she was a nutcase.

Then years later, it was a chaplain I learned was plagiarizing his sermon from the notes in my study bible I got at the PX locally.  I knew that there was something off with him too even before that and in turned out that he was committing sexual abuse with the girls he had adopted.  He is in federal prison now.  I just regret I never told his superior about the plagiarism because the abuse may have been discovered about five years before it was.

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My mother had some serious, serious negative gut reactions to a man who was friends with her employer (at a small restaurant.)

It’s a long story, but this young man gave her a ride home from work one day. At first she had vehemently refused the ride home, to the point of being obviously rude. But in the end, she felt pressured to take the ride.

She felt bad for being so rude about it and at the end of the ride she apologized to the young man saying, “I’m from a big city and we are more cautious there.” (She was living in a tiny town in New Mexico called Truth or Consequences at the time.)

About a month later, they found out that the young man was part of a serial killer ring and he was on video tape torturing people. The police/investigators who had to watch the tape suffered from serious mental health issues from have to watch it.

So...her gut was spot on.

 

BUT!  I have two other examples where my mom’s gut was totally, totally off and she ended up a friend with a malignant narcissist who messed with her life, and she became sort of friends with a homeless guy (my mom and dad would buy him some food from time to time and talk with him) who had serious mental health issues and sort of turned on her. 

And she’s friends with a really mean old woman as well right now, which just flummoxes me because my mom doesn’t have a mean bone in her body.

So....who knows with my mother! Sometimes she is spot on. Other times, not so much. 

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14 hours ago, Kassia said:

I feel like I can't trust my gut and that I'm always wrong about people.  I'm a really gullible person, so maybe that's why?  I will usually ask DH and/or dd for their opinions if they are involved because they have good track records and I really don't.

 

 

My guess is that you are very caring and want to take people at their word and believe them.   It is a blessing......and a curse.

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I am sure I have had some situations where I thought one thing and it was another, but I can think of a situation where I had reservations about someone, I expressed them, I was chastised......and it took that little group an entire YEAR of hanging out with her to come to the same conclusions I came up with the first night I met her (she is guano!)  

And I have been called a serial killer recently, so I guess you all need to be careful.  😜  I told my husband I am envisioning Dexter.....school counselor by day and killer by night......truth is, I barely have the energy for my day job!  No energy to be ridding the world of people who shouldn't be here.  😲  But I was called this by my family member whose child I currently have in my custody......and that is one of the nicer things she has called me recently! 🤣

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I think we need to beware - "gut feeling" and personal biases are two different things.    sometimes it's our gut, and sometimes it's our biases talking.  It can take effort to figure out which is which.

However, I once had a gut feeling about someone - and I wrote it off as personal bias so I ignored it.  No, it was my gut telling me to steer clear - and I ignored it.  Could have ended up a lot worse.

 

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20 minutes ago, DawnM said:

 

My guess is that you are very caring and want to take people at their word and believe them.   It is a blessing......and a curse.

I always thought I didn't trust someone because of my narcissist grandmother.  So i'd ignore it.  I've learned to differentiate between the two better. (bias and gut.)   There are  some people who absolutely should NOT be taken at their word.  

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2 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

So long and crazy and unbelievable.

I just re-read my post and realized I sounded demanding but I was really trying to be funny.  I mean, I am curious, but by no means expect you to share what you don't want to share.

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I was married to a pedophile for 15 years and had no clue. In fact, I thought he was swell. 

ETA: I was right about his family though. I always thought they were awful and when they chose to rally around my ex instead of his victims, I was proven correct.

Edited by OH_Homeschooler
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1 hour ago, DawnM said:

 

And I have been called a serial killer recently, so I guess you all need to be careful.  😜  I told my husband I am envisioning Dexter.....school counselor by day and killer by night......truth is, I barely have the energy for my day job!  No energy to be ridding the world of people who shouldn't be here.  😲  But I was called this by my family member whose child I currently have in my custody......and that is one of the nicer things she has called me recently! 🤣

 

49 minutes ago, OH_Homeschooler said:

I was married to a pedophile for 15 years and had no clue. In fact, I thought he was swell. 

ETA: I was right about his family though. I always thought they were awful and when they chose to rally around my ex instead of his victims, I was proven correct.

Both of these are absolutely awful.  I'm sorry.

 

 

47 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

All in all I think it is wise to be cautious regardless of whether we have 'gut feelings' or not. 

Sad, but true.

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14 hours ago, Ausmumof3 said:

Gut feeling can be based on previous life experiences or patterns and sometimes they can be wrong but it’s worth paying attention to it and figuring out if there’s a reason why you feel that way.

Dhs closes friend is someone who he thought was an idiot and I didn’t think I was interested in Dh the first time I saw him.

This.

I thought my DH was supremely annoying the first time I met him. He still has a particular mood he gets in where he is supremely annoying, lol! We can generally joke about it. 

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21 hours ago, Kassia said:

I feel like I can't trust my gut and that I'm always wrong about people.  I'm a really gullible person, so maybe that's why?  I will usually ask DH and/or dd for their opinions if they are involved because they have good track records and I really don't.

 

I have a similar thing, and I think it is because I have no artifice whatsoever. I don’t try to mislead people for some benefit to me. So then, I have not always seen it when others do do that because I trust people’s word as a default setting. 

Though I will say that has changed with age and I am more likely to look for ulterior motives than I used to. Here’s a slightly silly example: my hair. In my twenties, some ladies I knew absolutely persuaded me to cut my hair super short. They talked about how pretty my face was, how it would “carry” the look and how other beautiful women, like Lori Morgan or Martina McBride were gorgeous with their pixie cuts. So I did cut it. I did like it for a few weeks and then I missed my long hair. Growing it out took years and for all the years in between it was very unattractive to me. I mean, I tried to make it look as good as it could but I really disliked my hair for like three years. 

Fast forward several years. One of those same ladies, who herself has very beautiful, long hair, again told me a bunch of stuff about how my hair looks so good short because my face can carry it, blah, blah, blah...I’m telling you, I think she was trying to sabotage my hair. I think she wanted me to cut my pretty hair off so...I’m sorry but...she could be the prettier one. (Not that I think I’m prettier currently, just that we are closer to equally pretty if my hair is long.) In earlier years, I never imagined a friend* would do that but I got the feeling this was the case. I ended up sort of chuckling and saying, “Well, barring medical necessity, I don’t plan on cutting my hair short until I am ridiculously old. I love my long hair and I know if I cut it now, it will probably never be long again, so...” And then I just gave her a big smile, lol. 

*I am using the term “friend” loosely. This is not a dear, close friend. 

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Well, there was a guy in our town that I knew only on a professional level. He was and is quite good at his job. However, for a long time I did not believe the rumors about his personal life. I later found out that the rumored are true. He is likely a narcissist, and his true colors came out eventually.

I have never had a bad feeling about someone proven wrong, even when I haven’t been proven right yet.

On the other hand, I have learned that most people aren’t all bad or all good, and people with bad reputations can have good qualities even when they have rightly earned their reputation. Also, “mean girls” can remain that way their entire lives, just waiting for the right time to pounce on an unsuspecting victim.

Edited by City Mouse
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14 minutes ago, Quill said:

I have a similar thing, and I think it is because I have no artifice whatsoever. I don’t try to mislead people for some benefit to me. So then, I have not always seen it when others do do that because I trust people’s word as a default setting. 

Though I will say that has changed with age and I am more likely to look for ulterior motives than I used to. Here’s a slightly silly example: my hair. In my twenties, some ladies I knew absolutely persuaded me to cut my hair super short. They talked about how pretty my face was, how it would “carry” the look and how other beautiful women, like Lori Morgan or Martina McBride were gorgeous with their pixie cuts. So I did cut it. I did like it for a few weeks and then I missed my long hair. Growing it out took years and for all the years in between it was very unattractive to me. I mean, I tried to make it look as good as it could but I really disliked my hair for like three years. 

Fast forward several years. One of those same ladies, who herself has very beautiful, long hair, again told me a bunch of stuff about how my hair looks so good short because my face can carry it, blah, blah, blah...I’m telling you, I think she was trying to sabotage my hair. I think she wanted me to cut my pretty hair off so...I’m sorry but...she could be the prettier one. (Not that I think I’m prettier currently, just that we are closer to equally pretty if my hair is long.) In earlier years, I never imagined a friend* would do that but I got the feeling this was the case. I ended up sort of chuckling and saying, “Well, barring medical necessity, I don’t plan on cutting my hair short until I am ridiculously old. I love my long hair and I know if I cut it now, it will probably never be long again, so...” And then I just gave her a big smile, lol. 

*I am using the term “friend” loosely. This is not a dear, close friend. 

Mil did that to her sister.  I don't think it was because she thought she'd be prettier, but because she thought the sister would look good with short hair and loved to tell people what to do.  She convinced her to get a perm, then to cut it all off because it didn't look good permed.   short was mil's original plan.

My grandmother was always trying to manipulate how I wore my hair too.  I think that's why to this day I go through cycles of growing it out, and chopping it off.  But it grows fast.  My stylist always has to remind herself how fast it grows, yeah - we can risk taking off too much as give it a few weeks and it'll be fine.

One thing I've learned about manipulative people - they think EVERYONE is manipulative, and it's just who is better at being manipulative.  They have a hard time comprehending some people are genuine and would never even conceive the thought of trying to manipulate someone.  (and if perchance  they do - they think they're just a sucker and they deserve to be taken advantage of.)

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