General Question

ubersiren's avatar

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?

Asked by ubersiren (15150points) June 17th, 2009

I’m pretty much a wuss, so the closest thing to bravery that I’ve encountered is having LASIK eye surgery. That was scary as shit and I took it like a little girl.

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70 Answers

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

I once went scuba diving at night. I felt brave because my Dad was too much of a pansy to go with me. It was pretty scary at first, but definitely worth it.

Aethelwine's avatar

I hitchhiked from San Luis Obispo, CA to Las Vegas with a friend of mine. What normally takes 9 hours to drive took us a day and a half. All the truckers that picked us up were very friendly but one of our rides about halfway there tried to get us to stay over night at their place. They said that they could take us further the next day. Right! We got another ride and made it safely to Vegas.

peyton_farquhar's avatar

hmmm…voluntarily preparing and delivering speeches in high school. Probably the farthest I’ve ever stepped outside of my comfort zone.

Bri_L's avatar

Pole vault
Jumping off a 50 ft. cliff into the water

moved to CA with no job, place to stay, $300 and not knowing anyone.

In boy scouts this mentally slow boy was being picked on by 5 other scouts. One was towel whipping him while he cried. My brother and I didn’t know the boy or the scouts. We stepped in and the guy said he could out whip my brother. Before he finished his sentence my brother whipped the guy in his leg and marked him through his suit. I started going forward towards the other guys and we all fought. We kicked their butts. That was pretty brave for a 14 year old.

Aethelwine's avatar

@peyton_farquhar It was interesting. I appreciate truckers now.

Les's avatar

I once stopped a pick pocketer from picking a woman’s purse in Chicago. I grabbed his arm just as he was making the move, and he ran away.

I travelled to Antarctica and am going to do it again this year. I think that’s fairly brave. Or insane.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Les I lurve you for that. Very brave! I would love to visit Antarctica. I hope your next trip is a safe one.

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

@Les Nice! I’m a bit jealous about your Antarctica trip.

Bri_L's avatar

@Les – Big time lurve for les

Les's avatar

@jonsblond: I lurve you for the hitchhiking. That must have been awesome. I don’t think I could do that!

MacBean's avatar

I was a volunteer firefighter for a while.

I’ve had brain surgery (and just found out today that I may have to again).

I’ve hitchhiked, and I’ve picked up hitchhikers (which are both closer to “stupid” than to “brave” but that’s okay).

I’m agoraphobic and I moved across the country (upstate NY to the ID/WA border) by myself on $1000 with no job to live with people I’d never met before.

Six weeks later I drove back across the country, still by myself, in a 30-year-old car that I’d just bought for $400.

augustlan's avatar

@Bri_L I want you on my side!

@MacBean Brain surgery again? :(

MacBean's avatar

@augustlan: Yes. I’m very freakin’ unhappy about it. I tweeted my meltdown from the hospital parking lot. (I’m such a losergeek. XD) @mangeons has me friended on Twitter, so if you want to see what my freakout looked like, ask her to show you the page.

Bri_L's avatar

@MacBean – I am so sorry to hear that. To have it once is something no one should ever have to go through. To find out you have to go through it again. I am so very sorry.

Jack79's avatar

Most of you already know the bravest thing I’ve ever done. Though I think the whole idea behind “brave” is that you have a choice of cowardice too. I am by definition a coward, and I think I just did what I had to do.

The second bravest thing I’ve ever done was when a slightly younger kid from my school fell into the train tracks and I jumped in and helped him out just before the train came. Luckily it was London’s District Line with its irregular scheduling, and not one of the busier ones.

I’m good at keeping a clear head in a crisis and making fast decisions. My brain can really work overtime when that happens.

Ria777's avatar

@Bri_L, Jumping off a 50 ft. cliff into the water

I would never ever do that. a friend of mine died when last year when doing something like that. I don’t know that he jumped fifty feet, though.

Bri_L's avatar

@Jack79 – I don’t know.

@Ria777 – I should clarify that this was in Lake George, New York, a very deep lake into a verified 25ft. of water. ou just had to make sure you jumped out at least 1.5 feet from the take off point.

Ria777's avatar

@jonsblond, you can get in some situations while hitchhiking. one guy stranded me in the middle of a major highway after dark after I wouldn’t sexually service him. one adventure in misery after another followed over the next twenty-four hours. thank you obese man wearing only boxer shorts!

Ria777's avatar

@Les: how did you get to travel to Antarctica?

Darwin's avatar

@Ria777 – There are all sorts of commercial cruises and tours to Antarctica these days. Here are some examples. I also know researchers who have gone.

Ria777's avatar

@Darwin, thanks!

someone on Couchsurfing asked around on a rideshare on the rideshare forum. I admire his chutzpah and hope he got there (or gets there).

Aethelwine's avatar

@Ria777 I doubt I would have hitchhiked if I didn’t have my friend with me. It was scary enough as it was. I’m glad you survived your experience!

hitomi's avatar

I moved to London straight out of college with no job, no place to live, not knowing anyone, and having never been out of the country before. I didn’t really think of it as brave until people I told were like “OMG Are you INSANE! I could NEVER do that”.

I am also taking notes looking through this list of things and writing down stuff I’d like to do @Les going to Antarctica sounds AWESOME @Bri_L I would love to jump off a cliff like that (it’s on my list with sky diving and bungee jumping). I also have to admit @jonsblond the idea of hitchhiking definitely holds an appeal for me…I feel like you would meet some really interesting people.

aprilsimnel's avatar

One brave thing: 10 years ago, I climbed Mt. Warning in NSW, Australia with no caribiners or hooks or anything. In the rain. I’d never climbed any sort of rock before. Only recently have I learned that the nearby original peoples don’t want anyone climbing it. I’m sorry. :/

Another brave thing: My aunt grabbed an extension cord to “whup” me (at the time I had just turned 19 and “home” from my first year of uni for the summer) because I was out until 11:30PM to see a friend’s band. I guess she wanted to reassert who was boss. Anyway. I stayed her hand mid-air, looked her dead in the eye and said: You are never touching me again. She then tried to hit me with her fist, but I ducked and walked out. It took everything in me to walk away and not give her the rage-filled beatdown for 15 years of previous abuse, but I decided she wasn’t worth getting arrested over.

Blondesjon's avatar

The bravest thing I’ve ever done was marrying @jonsblond and starting a family when I was still nothing more than a child myself.

Seventeen years, five thousand fights, and three kids later I’m still scared half the time…and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

rooeytoo's avatar

I met a man on the internet and fell in love. I lived on the east coast of the USA, he lived in Sydney, Australia. After a year of chatting, I visited him in oz and eventually sold my business and everything I owned and my dog and I moved here. That was 11 years ago.

The brave part is I HATE FLYING and it is a 24 hour journey to Sydney! But with the help of massive doses of Xanax and a burning love in my heart I did it!

serendipity's avatar

I swam with sharks in the Pacific Ocean. Granted it was a semi-controlled environment (I was in a metal cage ala Jaws) but still there were 12 foot sharks bumping up against the cage while I swam there.

Bri_L's avatar

@hitomi – bungie and skydiving are so on my list!!!

@serendipity – Sharks = never a controlled environment really. Your cool kind of crazy!

lady4life's avatar

Lived..trying to stay sane {insane world}

To live and endure is bravery..{in my opinion}..

No one has killed me yet and I have not taken a life.

filmfann's avatar

Did you see my comment on fluther? People were all on my ass about that.

Blondesjon's avatar

@filmfann . . .that does take balls.

Aethelwine's avatar

@filmfann Support Sarah Palin here. I feel your pain.

Sariperana's avatar

Reading the eulogy at my grandfathers funeral, that was probably one of the hardest things i have ever done.

Appart from that, i have travelled around the world on my own since i was 18 for months at a time… didnt think much of it then, but looking back now i realised how dangerous that could have been.

serendipity's avatar

@ Bri_L—thanks! :) At the time I didn’t think so but I guess it was. I was on vacation with my husband and I kept saying he could come with me and he kept repeating “No, because when you die someone has to call your mother and tell her” LOL

Bri_L's avatar

@filmfann – I watched at the start and enjoyed it for a while then stopped. Now I look back and find it annoying.

@jonsblond – I didn’t know. I am going to need a minute.

DrBill's avatar

I once got a shot in the eyeball

OR

I stepped in front of a gunman and got shot protecting someone I did not know.

zephyr826's avatar

Becoming a teacher. For some reason, I decided to make less than all of my college and high school friends to work in a high school, even though I hated high school. Looking back, I think that’s braver than almost everything else I’ve done.

aprilsimnel's avatar

@DrBillo.O ::gasps!::

That is brave!

Bri_L's avatar

@DrBill – woah. That’s amazing.

Les's avatar

@Ria777
Check this question
I was/am part of a group that takes measurements of the ozone hole.

ubersiren's avatar

@filmfann : Ooh, that is gutsy! And I totally agree…

Darwin's avatar

@zephyr826 – I hate to say it, but becoming a teacher in a middle school is an even braver thing to do, IMHO.

Darwin's avatar

There are a lot of brave things that I think all of us have done. It is just that one person’s bravery is another person’s normal. It still takes just as much gumption, though, whether it is jumping out of an airplane or speaking in public.

Judi's avatar

I have scuba dove with sharks, bungee jumped and am not afraid of any roller coaster. I have handled snakes and killed black widows, and I have maintained my composure when falling 10 thousand feet out of the sky in a small plane and recovering from a flat spin just in time to avoid a crash. Those things all pale in comparison to what I think was the bravest thing I ever did and it happened in I think second grade.
I may have told this story on another thread. If so, please forgive.
It was the mid 60’s and racism was still pretty rampant, even in Oregon, where it was rare for this little girl to even see a person of color. Our all white school had a little black boy enroll.
It was the custom at our school cafeteria for the girls to sit on one side of the table and the boys to sit on the other. The little boy was near the beginning of the lunch line and I was near the end.
I watched, as this kid sat down. No little boys sat on the same side of the table as him. The tables began to fill, I moved up in line, and no one was sitting with him.
Being somewhat the misfit myself, my heart went out to him. I wanted so bad to be accepted myself and I tried so hard for the kids to want to sit by me, but never had I been avoided like the plague like this boy was.
When I got my tray I had a decision to make. Risk alienating the few friends I had by doing the unthinkable? Did I break the “unspoken rule” and sit on the boys side? And then, sit with THIS BOY?
We sat there silently at lunch. 2 misfits, on the same side of the table. Not a word was spoken but neither of us was a lone.
My bravest and proudest moment.

Ria777's avatar

@DrBill, so you’ve gotten shot twice now? tell these stories (or stories), if you would?

Bri_L's avatar

@Judi – Fan fucking tastic! I was impressed with your first list, until I read the last activity. Man that rocks! I would like to say I would have done that. Obviously I can’t know.

I know I have stood up for the mentally challenged, the slow and the picked on. My bravest thing listed is one example. I got harassed on this sight for doing so.

Great job.

ubersiren's avatar

@Judi : What a great story! That was really special.

hitomi's avatar

@Judi your story makes me so glad that I have grown up in a more accepting time…not that I haven’t dealt with racism and issues like that, but never something that extreme. Like @Bri_L I would like to think that I would act in the same why (I was always as a child completely intolerant of bullies and stood up for the “weird” kids) but I can never know and I am GLAD that I’ll never know because, hopefully, society has reached a point where this doesn’t happen (at least not to that extreme) anymore. Bravo to you!

augustlan's avatar

Many of you know parts of this story… sorry!

I was sexually abused by an uncle throughout my entire childhood. No one stopped him, no one called the police or kicked him out, or disowned him… nothing.

So, I’m 13 years old and spending my first summer days alone (everyone works) at my grandparent’s house because I’m very sick and my mother works nearby. This uncle drops by for lunch one day and discovers me there. For days, he comes every day and I manage to keep my distance… he doesn’t touch me.

On the third day, he moves ever closer to me, circling me like a bird of prey. He gets ahold of me and tries to tongue kiss me. I struggle and turn my head away and he starts kissing me all over my face. I break free, shoving him away. Shaking with fear and seething with rage, I tell him that if he ever touches me again, I’ll scream rape so fast it’ll make his head spin. I tell him that if I have to, I’ll kill him. He never touched me again.

For the next year, I was certain he was going to kill me. Everywhere I went, I carried a note in my pocket reading “If I am found dead, <his name> killed me.”

Judi's avatar

@augustlan ; WOW. I had not heard that story. What a scary way to live, wondering if someone will be around the corner to kill you. I am so sorry you went through that!

Judi's avatar

@hitomi ; my gratitude to you too then, because I was “the weird kid.”

Bri_L's avatar

@augustlan – I am so sorry you went through that. How do people let that happen!?!?!? Effing cowards. I mean the people who should have been protecting you, not the victoms.

Ria777's avatar

@augstlan, did they know about the situation, though?

@Bri_L, relatives who know about that kind of situation frequently make themselves disbelieve what they know or put it from my mind. I can think of two examples off the top of my head. though I do also know of a case where neighbors had basically figured out that my then-roommate made child pornography of a local boy and did nothing. (sounds like a pretty dramatic story. I can testify that it did happen.) I have another, arguably worse story, that I could tell, but I will hold off because I do not know the whole circumstances.

I turned in the roommate, by the way. and, no, that doesn’t count as the bravest thing I have ever done. I did this as soon as I had figured out the situation, no more than two or three days after having moved in. (he did not do a very good job of hiding his activities. obviously, since the neighbors had cottoned on, as I said above. let alone if you lived with him.)

ubersiren's avatar

@augustlan : Wow, what a feat for a 13 year old! You were, indeed, a brave little toaster.

augustlan's avatar

@Ria777 Yep… they knew. My mom, my grandparents, and most of my mom’s 5 siblings all knew. I mean, it didn’t happen in front of them or anything… but they always found out after each incident. It is one of the major reasons I no longer have a relationship with my mother.

rooeytoo's avatar

@augustlan – that is truly appalling. And it seems to happen frequently. What the hell goes on in someone’s head that they can ignore such activity. I have read the explanations but they make no sense to me.

Good on ya for surviving and fighting and going on to tell your story, takes guts and strength and real brass ovaries.

augustlan's avatar

Thanks guys.

Bri_L's avatar

@Ria777- That is my point. No one touches my kids or any other kids like that in my presence. And if I am wrong in my accusation, I am an adult and will live with the mistake. I could not live with the thought of not doing something.

DrBill's avatar

@Ria777

It’s been eight times, but who’s counting.

ubersiren's avatar

@DrBill : Jeez, you’re like 50 Cent!

Ria777's avatar

@DrBill, and this has happened how?! do tell. I mean, what?!

kerryyylynn's avatar

During a softball tournament in Vegas, we pulled over to help a guy who had had a seizure just as he stepped off the curb. He had gotten hit by a car, and half of his face was torn off. I yelled for someone to call the police, and I held his head up as the ambulence came. That, my friend, is the bravest thing Ive ever done.

DrBill's avatar

In my younger days I was a bodyguard.

Once protecting an innocent bystander,

Once protecting my charge,

Once by accident.

Four times during a robbery.

Once that was too stupid to mention.

jeanna's avatar

I’m alive with a smile on my face daily, and I haven’t given up yet. I’d say that’s the bravest thing any of us can do.

dannyc's avatar

I have stood for my principles in business, life and with my kids every day, whether popular or not. Often I have had advice, often I have not taken it, I always went with my feelings and intuition, sometimes pitting me against huge firms determined to try and crush me, or to discredit me, gossip about me, or spin their deceptive web. Standing each and every day by what you believe to be right is the bravest thing you can do, shunning what is considered the way of the day.

ItsAHabit's avatar

I was a whistleblower when my department wanted to hire a woman who was a friend rather than conduct a legitimate personnel search.

SmoothEmeraldOasis's avatar

I stood my ground and became a single parent after thirteen years of various forms of torture. And I kept the children from being split and having to live with a parent that may still be living only for self righteous reasons.

SmoothEmeraldOasis's avatar

There have been much actions that I consider brave that I have done in my lifetime. One is that I enterviended in a fight between my former boyfriend’s brother and his girlfriend at the time. The incident happend something like this. I was driving toSonoma County University to attend a class and they wanted to tag along because she Deborah lived near the University, so I was to drop them off. While there at the University Larry fliped out on her and began to punch her lights out, she ofcourse began to bleed all over the interior of my car. What I did was to stop my car and turned around to look at him straight into his eyes and told him that I did not care what or how they chose to be around each other, but to not handle this argument with violence in my car and to GET OUT! Well that cooled his jets down and he just sat there and looked back at me and said in his macho manner. Man you wouldn’t do that, I’ll go over there and start showing you just what you will do and what you won’t do. I said, yea, but think on this, your brother is gonna have a hay day on you if anything happens to me. I was scared so much even my sphincter muscles were squeezed so tight that not even a drop of uring would leak and I had a full bladder. I told him to clean up my car now! He always treated me with respect after that incident between the three of us.

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