1. The Giraffe
There’s a picture of me as a 3-year old on a giraffe. I believed and told a lot of people it was a real giraffe until I turned 19 and looked at the picture again (after being questions about the story by my girlfriend) – definitely not a real giraffe.
As a kid, I used to believe that your body somehow knew the time you got married and therefore automatically made you pregnant after (exact words I thought). I didn’t know that any kind of sexual activity was involved. When my mother became pregnant with my younger sister, I remember arguing and getting so mad about this and telling her she was wrong and I was right (she kept saying no and couldn’t stop laughing).
3. The Death Chorus
I believed that when you die, a parachute sprouts out of your back and whooshes you up to heaven.
4. The Poop Villain
I believed that the act of defecation was orchestrated by a sinister-looking man who spends most of his time lounging on a hammock inside your ass, but every once of a while he rolls a giant boulder down the chute like he’s bowling.
5 Hot Tub Phobia
My dad told me that if you touch the very bottom of a hot tub, you get sucked in. It freaked me out and I still am not the biggest fan of going into hot tubs.
6. The Piper
My mom used to tell me that if I whistled at night, snakes would come and eat me.
7. The Horny Laugh
I thought if I cried and then I laughed, it meant I was going to grow a horn from my butt.
8. The Watermelon
I was afraid of eating watermelon seeds because someone told me they’d grow in my stomach and kill me if I did.
My uncle told me that if i bit my nails then they’d never digest and eventually they’d fill my stomach and I’d die. I, of course, believed him but continued biting my nails thinking that one day I would just fall over and die.
10. The Phantom Limb
Believed for a long time, if you stick your arm out the window it would fall off. Parents told me that one, siblings played along. (To be honest, it still freaks me out enough not to do it.)
11. The Chupacabra
My dad always threatened me with the chupacabra when I was little. I always knew it wasn’t REALLY true, but like. It was a goat-sucking demon, anything’s possible. Anyhow, I moved into my apartment two years ago, only to learn that my next door neighbor’s dog is named Chupacabra. I’m really not okay with it and am not sure why I haven’t yet moved.
12. The Pepperoni
My parents told me that pepperoni gave me nightmares as a baby, so I stayed away from pepperoni for years and years. I finally tried it recently, and nothing. It was all adorable lies.
13. The Funny Face
I really thought that if I made a funny face and someone smacked in the back of the head that my face would really stay like that. It was brought up in conversation a couple months ago and only then did my dad tell me it was a joke this whole time.
14. Vampire Bats
My Grandpa told me that all attics have bats in them, like living vampire bats that would bite you and give you diseases. He was kidding, but I legitimately believed in the presence of evil rabid bats until I was about 17 and was invited to an attic party and had to get over it. Even then, I felt afraid.
15. Cracked out
I believed that whole “step on a crack, break your mother’s back” thing, like I would avoid cracks in sidewalks, the grout of tiles, everything. Then one time I slipped while trying to skip one when I was 13, fell down a hill and ended up in the emergency room. Safe to say that explaining what happened was mortifying, especially because I believed that I’d saved my mother’s well-being.
Until I was 15 years old, I thought the word for a girl’s “private parts” was “bagina.” Yeah. Like, with a “B.” On my fifteenth birthday, I was trying to brag to some guys that I had gotten to third base with a girl (I hadn’t, obviously) and I kept bragging about her “nice bagina.” That went well.
17. Growing Pains
I thought that show “Growing Pains” was about the actual feeling of pain you get when you grow…like I didn’t get the metaphor. There was a character on the show named Boner and that was all I knew. So when my Mom told me I was having ‘growing pains’ when I was getting taller, I said, “Oh, like Boner?” She thought I was telling her I was getting boners. It was weird to talk about boners with my mom before I even knew that I was having them. Still can’t really say or hear “boner” out loud without cringing.
18. Citrus Fresh
We used to use a counter cleaner spray, like to clean the kitchen, that was called “Citrus Fresh.” My family speaks Spanish at home, but my Mom would try to teach me things in English whenever she could. One time, I pointed to an orange like “I want that” and she said “citrus fresh!” because she was excited to use the term. For the rest of my life until I was a teenager, I thought that the counter cleaner and orange juice were just different versions of the same thing. I straight up thought everyone was just drinking a cleaning product and it was okay. Still thankful I didn’t apply that sort of logic to bleach containers and milk cartons.
19. Bald Balls
When I was ten, I overheard a bunch of older guys who helped coach my baseball team talking about shaving their junk. They said girls like “bald balls.” As soon as there was hair to shave, I was shaving it all, thinking that what girls wanted most from a guy was some freshly shaven, baby soft testicles. I believed that until college, and now I see that those guys were probably joking.
20. Icy Spicy
I thought ‘Icy Hot’ and ‘Old Spice’ were the same thing because the containers looked similar…I just thought ‘Icy Hot’ was like a marketing ploy to make ‘Old Spice’ seem extreme. Imagine my surprise when, before my first real date ever, I rolled on that Icy Hot like it was deodorant, cologne, and the solution to all of my hopes and dreams. It was my nightmare.
21. Dialed Up
Was convinced that every time I used dial up, a little guy working inside some big computer would see my request and then grant me permission to enter, and every time it worked I would knock on the screen and say “thank you!” This went on for years. Sometimes my wifi connects and I find myself exclaiming my gratitude aloud…even at a crowded Starbucks.
Growing up I sincerely believed that having sex would damn me to hell. I mean, I guess some circles probably still do believe this, but I was so messed up about it, I ended up completely destroying a very loving relationship because I was convinced that the sex basically ensured we were going to somehow be punished or die. I was 17. … Yeah.
23. Testicles, TENTACLES, Same Difference
Okay so my family and I were going to a seafood restaurant and we were talking about calamari and I was trying to say that I didn’t like the tentacle part and instead I said I didn’t want to eat testicles and I literally have not lived it down yet.
24. Santa Scholar
I used to believe that Santa stopped time to be able to get to all those houses and all those kids in just one night. Not only did I completely believe in Santa, I had elaborate theories on how he conducted his business. Nobody corrected or stopped me, they all played along completely seriously. Much to my dismay, I was laughed at endlessly at the lunch table in third grade when I presented my hypotheses to my classmates. I still have a ‘crazy girl’ complex. Still.
25. Vikini, Bagina, Whatever
I called it a vikini for a really long time, and my mom didn’t stop me because she thought it was funny.