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Prom—that rite of passage that means so much to some high school students (and so very little to others). It's supposed to be a magical night—one involving fancy dresses, hairspray, corsages, kitten heels, awkward slow dancing, even more awkward fast dancing, and often, some flavor or other of Schnapps. But for many, their nights just don't go as planned. Here are some prom horror stories from various Reddit threads that will make you so happy you're not a teenager anymore (and if you are, and your prom is coming up, don't worry—what could possibly go wrong?).

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1. It sounds like Kair0n and his date very narrowly avoided actual bodily harm.

My girlfriend (then a college freshman; we'll call her Ex) and I (then a high school senior) mutually broke up the day before we had to buy tickets and determine who our dates were. It was a pretty amicable split, I thought, beyond the normal depression that goes with suddenly being single. I didn't have a date, so I asked one of my best female friends who also didn't have a date. She agreed, so we went.

Fast forward a month, prom day. We're doing that photogenic thing in the reception area and getting pictures taken and stuff and who else walks in but Ex. Not with a date, just there to 'take pictures'. The first thing she does is give Best Friend Prom Date the cattiest, bitchiest smile I'd ever seen her give and suddenly my blood ran cold with fear because I knew what was coming.

I spent the next hour trapped in my own personal hell as Ex tried to initiate a screamfest in a room full of 400 of my peers and tried to chew me out for leaving her for "that skank". Despite her having initiated the breakup talks, it turned out Ex totally harbored ill will towards me for agreeing to split things off. Things were about to get physical when they finally opened up the ballroom, a place of sanctuary only those attending prom could enter. I pretty much just picked up Best Friend Prom Date - she was maybe 4'8, 70 pounds, just real tiny, and in a dress that was very slim-fitting - and strongarmed my 5'11, 170-pound, relatively fit way to safety. The rest of the night went much better.

I later found out that she'd called my mom (they were kinda friends) to ask if it was okay if she showed up. Good guy Mom, knowing how hellaciously awkward it would be, said it would probably be best if she didn't. Ex - and I'll probably never forget this, and the phrase 'already on my way' is something of a trigger phrase now - told her with about as much rage and anger in her voice as she could possibly muster without sounding over-the-top, "Oops. I'm already on my way." I guess she'd still expected me to take her to prom.

TL;DR Girl breaks up with me, later tries to break me

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2. Jehuti is still not all the way over being rejected, 10 years later.

My prom date cheated on me a few months before prom. It was a very hard break up. After a couple of months we agreed to go to prom together anyways. I thought we were going to get back together for sure... We were talking again. We always had great chemistry. We got a nice hotel suite, tons of booze, and invited a bunch of friends for the after party. My closest friend at the time got really drunk and started hitting on her. I did not think too much on it (he was really drunk). Another friend and I left to go pick up some more food and when I got back my date was crying and called her friends to pick her up and leave. Apparently, my "closest" friend was getting to touchy with her and spooked her so bad she had to lock her self in the bathroom until her friend picked her up (a friend she would later go on to date). Needless to say, the three of us never talked to each other again. A few years later my ex and I started talking again, but it was never the same. We were such good friends friends in high school (honestly, I'm 28, married, and STILL thought our friendship from so long ago was bad ass). It still saddens me to know that we went on such different paths... but my wife is amazing and I would not trade her for anything, not even the past :)

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3. Rmanager totally missed the boat on asking the right person.

I was voted a class favorite so my attendance was more or less required. I was also incredibly self-conscious so I invited a friend/co-worker. It took her three months to give me an answer and only on the condition I set her best friend up as a double date. The moment after taking pictures, she and the friend, literally, ran off and we did not see them until they were ready to go home. What really should have been a break-out experience for me in getting positive attention from my peers turned into a bitter reinforcement of my own poor self-esteem.

Monday in art class, I asked the amazingly attractive girl at a shared station how her evening had gone. She gave me a sweet but sad smile and said no one had asked her. When I recounted my miserable evening and off-handedly joked I should have taken her, she again smiled at me and said she had been waiting.

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4. Not only was lovelybliss' prom awful, so were the next four years of her relationship with her date.

My date was my ex-boyfriend. At the time we were dating for 3 years. His temperament can be simply be described as unreasonably sensitive and unconfident. He also loved to pick fights. I am very bubbly, easy-going, and I love spontaneity.

  1. Out of my group of 20, he was the only date that did not purchase a corsage to save money. I did not hold it against him after all, I was happy that he went out of his way to be my date.

  2. He decided to pick a fight with me on my prom night over a minuscule detail. He was upset that I did not go to check up on him while he was changing into his tux. I was occupied at the time entertaining my friends who I had invited over my house. He then proceeded to hide in my room to avoid socializing.

  3. Once the music started, everyone rushed to the dance floor except us. He refused to dance because he was afraid of what people would think of him. I assured him that he looked great and should just have fun. He was not convinced so I stayed beside him because I felt obligated to. He sat at the table and I listened to him complain for about an hour. We sat there awkwardly for about two hours before I started crying.

What is worse is that his behavior during my prom night is a reflection of our entire relationship. We were together for almost 7 years on and off. I stayed in the relationship so long because he was my first boyfriend and I did not know what a normal and healthy relationship was supposed to be like.

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5. Ravyrn learned the hard way—always make sure the cap is on the ketchup bottle.

Senior prom. My girlfriend, myself, and I think 3 or 4 pairs of other friends went to a very nice steakhouse in a neighboring city. One of our goofy friends at the table ordered something that came with fries and they brought a glass ketchup bottle to the table. At some point during the meal, my friend is goofing around, lays the ketchup bottle on its side, and says hey lets play spins the bottle. He spins the shit out of the ketchup bottle. He didn't close the bottle properly, resulting in the lid not being secured. So he spins the shit out of this bottle, the lid flies off, and ketchup splatters out all over the table creating 360 degrees of disaster. He was across the table from me. My girlfriend and I were covered in ketchup as was my friend who thought it'd be a good idea to spin the bottle of ketchup, his date, and one other girl sitting next to him. There was a look of horror on his face when he realized what he had done. The girls were pissed. I wasn't too upset over it though. Either he or his family paid for any expenses related to the fiasco. We ended up skipping the dance and just went and partied instead.

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6. Ilovepelicans didn't find out that his date wasn't allowed to dance until it was too late.

I had no intentions of attending my senior prom. I didn't have many friends, much less a date, or the money to purchase an over priced ticket and the extra cash for pictures. But my mom and brother insisted, so I went and bought a goodwill suit and tie (it looked horrible), asked one of my close friends to go with me, and went on my merry way. I was expecting an ok time. Boy was I wrong.

At the time of my senior yeah I wasn't a healthy weight. Not huge, but a few pounds overweight. My date was in the same position. Once it was our time to take pictures, we were posed in the most horrible position. It appeared to add an extra 10lbs to each of us. But I was determined not to let this put a damper on my mood.

Time to hit the dance floor. My date had family rules which prohibited a female dancing with a male, unless it was a family member. I didn't find out until numerous death glares form her and her friends. Once she finally told me, I quickly took my seat at the empty banquet table. I completely respected her family values. So I sat, and I watched all of my fellow classmates have the time of their lives. I only had a few select friends, so it wasn't just a "oh let me go find someone else to hang out with." I received a few acknowledgements from some of my former teachers complimenting my goodwill style, and a couple of my peers.

All of that money spent by my brother and mom just for me to sit on my ass. I just wish they would have understood that I WANTED to stay home.

TL;DR: awkward poses and sitting.

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7. GunnieGraves' date probably could have mentioned her boyfriend a little earlier.

Senior prom I took a German exchange student who was pretty attractive, and we got along very well.

I had known her for the entire year at this point and she waited until we were walking into prom to tell me "I have a boyfriend so I hope you don't think anything is happening tonight".

all I could think to respond with was "I like how you assume that's the only reason I asked you. But that would've been handy information to have, I don't know, six months ago".

That was our last time speaking.

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8. Partial_to_dreamers' misfortune is why all prom dresses should come with a complimentary lobster bib.

My friend's date spilled gravy down the front of my dress at supper before prom. It was a pale yellow dress. It showed terribly. The waitress helped me try to get as much off as possible with club soda while I tried not to cry.

9. Maxpowr9's fiasco was short but not sweet.

Date got drunk before we met up and puked in the limo and didn't even go to prom.

10. Radiobrat78 was bamboozled!

Didn't have a girlfriend at the time, so asked a friend from church if she wanted to go with me. Another friend of mine did similarly. Tried dating girl I asked, but there was nothing there, so we decided to still go as friends. Fast forward to prom night, and we decide to switch partners for a dance, "just to change it up". (You see where this is going, don't you?)

Fast forward to the next afternoon at church, another friend asks if my date and double-guy are STILL dating. turns out they were dating the entire time, and didn't want to make anything awkward for me. (I appreciate it, but it sure as hell made the conversation about how much I'd like to try dating the girl I went with again on the ride home after dropping them off really fucking awkward.)

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11. Friendsomewhere's story is too long to sum up, but just know this—Brent is the worst.

Senior year, people had began to make prom plans after fall break. I had hatched an intricate plan to ask a girl I was close to, which consisted of me awkwardly asking "Hey, do you want to go to prom with me?", so I came into first period and approached her. To my extreme surprise, she turned to me and said "Hey friendsomewhere, let's talk prom." I was stunned. She followed up with so, [other female friend], [male friend], and I wanted to go in a group and wondered if you wanted to get in on this. Obviously, my answer was "yes". So, our group was made, and it was decided that I would drive my grandfather's 1965 Ford Galaxie 500 convertible.

Fast forward to the week before prom. She asked me if it was alright if this other guy, Brent, joined our group. Brent was an alright sort of guy, and I knew he had just been turned down by another girl. So I said yeah, alright. By this time, it had been explicitly stated that the males of the group were not to invest in corsages or bouquets.

Prom day rolls around. The car is ready, I've got a snazzy suit, my hair and beard have been neatly trimmed (as to not look like such a hippie radical), and everything is in order. Everyone shows up a my house for photographs. Who shows up with a bouquet for the girl I thought was my date? Brent. Who insults my grandmother? Brent. When we leave, who takes the back seat with the girl? Brent.

So, we get to prom. It's in downtown Indianapolis, at the zoo at the "dolphin pavilion". So, we're there a little early, I'm showing off the car, shooting the shit with my buddies, and just waiting around. Brent and the girl are growing noticeably closer, but I'm not worried (hindsight is 20/20). The doors open, we go in, and the festivities begin.

It didn't go so bad for a while. She and I slow danced for quite awhile, and then she excused herself. Fine with me, I understood. I went, got a drink, went to the restroom, and came out to the dance floor. Who was passionately locked in a grinding slow dance with her? Brent. At this point, I naively decided to wait it out, and politely cut in. I gave it three or four songs, and went back out. They ignored me. So, I did the only logical thing: I went back to our table, removed my tie and suit jacket, and lay down on the floor.

It was a lost cause at this point. So, prom ended at 11:00, and we all went to post-prom. Guess who both took the back bench seat and were mostly silent the whole ride? It doesn't even need answering at this point.

Post-prom was held at a two story mini-golf/arcade. Those two ended up in a dark corner together for four hours. I lost $700.00 worth of money (virtual, but still substantial) at the blackjack tables, drank eight cups of coffee, and sat alone and depressed in an easy chair.

But the story doesn't end there, oh no. Two hours in, Brent comes up to me and asks for the keys so he can put something he won in a raffle in the trunk. I go out with him. In the parking lot, I say "Hey man, are you and her a thing now?" "Oh yeah," he says "Sorry about that." I went from dejected to ready to kill. "You knew! You knew she was supposed to be my date!?" "Yeah, I did. But don't worry, I'm sure you'll find another girl like her in college." I walked away. I went back to my chair, and resisted the urges to cry and start a fight.

Sorry about the wall of text and incoherent ramblings. I'm a freshman in college now, and I no longer see her or Brent, and she no longer talks to me at all (but that's another story). It doesn't really matter now, but I can't help but think that things could have been different.

TL;DR: Thought I had a date. Guy gets turned down, muscles his way into our group, runs off with my date, is a dick to me, and essentially turns me into their chauffeur.

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