Does anyone know why some people think the world should revolve around them, and everyone should do what they say? These people, known as a "Karen," are unfortunately way too common. Just ask these poor souls.
People who have interacted with a "Karen" on Reddit share what went down. Content has been edited for clarity.
This Is Why Reading Is Important
“About eight years ago, I was starting a new job. As the new guy, I was given the task of opening up the restaurant. This meant arranging tables and setting them up, stocking the bar and waiters station, counting the register, and confirming reservations for the day. As I was new and still figuring out where things were and went, I came in about half an hour early to get ready for our 11:30 opening.
Before anyone else on staff showed up to work, a loud knock came from our locked front door. I went to see who was there, and two elderly women wanted to come in and be seated for service. I told them we opened for service at 11:30 and they weren’t having it. They insisted our website stated we open at 10:30. I told them we couldn’t have people in the restaurant while we were setting up, but we’d be happy to take care of them when we open. They demanded to speak to a manager, so told them I was the only one there. They then proceeded to seat themselves in our outdoor patio area. Fine. They were out of my way, I could proceed with my tasks. Except they decided to start calling the restaurant. The phone would ring, I would go over to pick it up, they would swear at me, hang up and then do it again. After the third or fourth time, I just let the phone ring, and the other old lady got up and just started pounding on the door to be let in while the other was on the phone letting it ring.
At this point, the other waiter on schedule showed up and asks what was going on. I explain he goes out to tell them the same things I did and they gave him the same work over treatment of yelling, demands, and insults. How dare we deny them service, we’re going to get fired, they’re going to have our jobs, etc.
Finally, 11:30 rolled around, the kitchen was up and ready for service, we’re up and ready for service.
The two old ladies barged in and shoved a Groupon coupon in my co-worker’s face, to which he replied, ‘Ma’am. Our establishment does not accept Groupons. If you had read the name and address of the restaurant the Groupon is attached to and compared it to the name of our restaurant on the front door you’ve been pounding on for the past hour, you would have discovered you are at the wrong restaurant.’
They slinked off.”
Yeah, That’s Definitely Not How It Works
“My ex-roommate and I shared a place for two years. She was filthy rich, entitled, and selfish. We bought common kitchen utensils, an IKEA side table, and a Black & Decker blender. One day, she wanted to move out to her own place and was packing all her stuff. On the day of the move-out, I wasn’t at the apartment. When I came back, the entire unit was so dirty with trash all over. I noticed she hadn’t returned the mailbox key, and so I messaged her asking for it.
Her reply stands fresh in my mind, ‘Pay me my share of the used items and take the mailbox key.’
I read it twice and replied ‘You can take whatever you want but I am not paying you back your share. You have used the items for two years. I hope you understand how depreciation works.’
She was adamant and said she had contributed to the items and wants her 50% back.
I was patient and said, ‘You paid 50% and used it for two years. How do you think you will get back the money from IKEA if you return it now? Do you understand that the item isn’t gold that appreciates in value?’
She sent me a hate message in capital letters, saying how narcissistic I was and how a higher power would take care of me. I informed my building management about the key and they were understanding of the situation as her name was also on the lease.
Finally, she returned the mailbox key to the management and sent me a long text which I didn’t bother to read, and ended up blocking her.”
He’s Unforgettable, But Not In A Good Way
“I live in a vacation destination. Expensive lakeshore homes are often owned by wealthy families from big cities. I also work in automotive.
So a male ‘Karen’ comes in and wants something maintenance done. Specifically an alignment. Now, to be clear, alignments are NEVER an emergency. The good news is he gets to talk to my business partner. I’m not really paying attention because she greeted him and I’m doing whatever.
My partner explains to him when we are scheduling. He wants it done first because he had new tires put on before he left a big city, but didn’t want to pay their prices for further service and is on vacation here.
My partner reiterated the schedule and tells him if he wants to drop the vehicle off and leave it, if we get an opening or cancellation, we will do our best to get it in. I’m now paying some attention. This is a male-dominated industry and some of them get a bit rude to her, especially customers.
‘Nope. I’m from [big city] and you need to do it now,’ the guy rudely snapped.
‘Sir, in order to do that, I would have to start calling customers we have already made commitments to and tell them we cannot honor them,’ my business partner pleaded.
‘Well missy you’re just going to have to start calling them or I will,’ he retorted.
At this point, I have had enough. I simply look over at him and explain to him there is no circumstance in which I will be there and we will work in his vehicle.
He suggests to me, I don’t know what I’m talking about and am about to be fired. I shrug, tell him no problem, for a check for several million dollars I’ll have the lawyer draw up the agreement, he can fire both of us and try to convince the techs to work directly for him. I was pretty certain, given the bonus I would promise them for change of ownership, that none would be in a position to work for someone with his attitude.
I did end up taking him to the door. It was over a decade ago. I will never forget him.”
And That’s It On Being A Brat, Karen
“While walking toward the Target store entrance, I noticed in my peripheral a 45-ish woman heading in as well. Being the gentleman I am, I let her go first. I noticed she didn’t have a mask on, nor did she have one in hand. There was a large poster plastered to the entrance doors, as well as an A-frame sign on the ground, stating masks were required per city mandate to enter the store. This woman didn’t seem to care.
As soon as we entered, an employee wiping down carts asked her if she had a mask.
The woman replied in a firm tone, ‘No, I do not!’
He asked her to grab one from a station set up with masks and sanitizer by the door.
She said in a very antagonistic tone, ‘Sure. I will put a mask on. See? Here I am putting a mask on because that will make such a difference.’
I continued on my way and noticed she immediately headed to the in-store Starbucks. Five minutes later, as I walked down an aisle, here came this woman toward me. She had completely removed her mask and it was nowhere in sight. She was staring straight at me with her drink in her hand, holding it in front of her face oddly. When she got within about 10 feet of me, I scowled at her mildly.
Just to be a brat, she turned her body 90 degrees and shimmied sideways walking past me, as if trying to exaggerate social distancing and make fun and of those around her who were complying. It was clear she was overtly being a childish, trouble-making nightmare.
So I simply said, ‘Idiot. There’s always got to be one in a crowd, and I guess it’s you this time.’
She was so stunned, she didn’t know what to say.”
She Was A Repeat Offender
“I had recently purchased a home and was in the process of repairing it. It was a steamy hot day, and I was waiting for the HVAC repairman, hoping he could resurrect the air conditioner without breaking the bank.
The front driveway was shaded with a huge pecan tree that was like a canopy of shade. There weren’t many trees on the block, so there were frequently cars parked in the shade. I didn’t blame them! As long as they weren’t blocking my driveway, I had no concerns with who parked there.
I was on a ladder on the side of the house and heard a car stop and park. I was hoping it was the HVAC guy, but it was a sedan with two ladies. She parked so her car completely blocked my driveway. I waved and tried to get her attention before she exited her car. She looked directly at me, and chose to ignore me. I begin walking toward her car. I was not even annoyed at this point. She could have some shade, she just couldn’t block the driveway. So, I waved again, but she was hurrying to exit her car. I asked her to move forward about six feet to leave my driveway clear. She ignored me.
The other lady with her clearly heard me as she turned and looked at me.
Louder now, I said, ‘Excuse me. You need to move your car out of my driveway.’
She continued down the street with an armload of paperwork. No response whatsoever. I followed the ladies. I was now getting annoyed with her obvious decision to ignore me completely.
I saw my HVAC guy approaching, so I flagged him down and told him I would have the driveway open for him in a minute. I was gaining on ‘Karen.’ I saw her stop, so I jogged to her and again asked her to move her car ahead a bit. She acted as though I was not even there, so I repeated my request, and she repeated her performance.
Okay, so now I was mad. I stepped into her personal space and loudly repeated my request. She stated it was a state-funded street and she would park wherever she wanted. I agreed, but I also informed her she was impeding my access and wasn’t within her rights. She repeated she would park wherever she wanted. I asked whom she was visiting and she said she had several friends to visit today. I looked, and the papers were of a religious nature.
I said, ‘You will move away from my driveway or you can explain your rights to security,’ and I headed for home.
She decided to further state her rights, and I decided to make that call. I called, and the security guard said they’ve had problems with her in the past and he would gladly refresh her with the rules again. He was there in minutes. I explained she was welcomed to park in the shade, just not to block access to my driveway. I pointed to where she had gone and left to get the repairman started.
We were in the backyard when I heard a shriek. Apparently, Karen felt it was okay to push the security dude. It’s not! By the time I got to the front yard, the police were arriving. They arrested her at the request of the security dude, and her car was towed.
Karma got Karen that day!”
Wow, Those Must Have Been Some Pretty Loud Doors
“A few years ago, I was living with my friends as a tenant in a row house in Maharashtra. We were five girls, all working IT jobs with different shift timings. It had been smooth sailing for years till we moved into this particular society.
Our neighbor was the biggest ‘Karen’ we have ever encountered. She would scream at us regularly on the road for stupid random things but the scariest was her coming to our door at 3:00 in the night with her husband, thumping the door loudly, and saying our going to the bathroom at night disturbed her sleep. She lives in another house altogether, but apparently, when we went to the bathroom she would get disturbed because of the door noise. We girls couldn’t hear anything if we were in different rooms, but she could from another house!
She ordered us to stop going to the bathroom at night as according to her, our parents hadn’t taught us how to close bathroom doors properly.
I would also like to point out those of us who returned home after the evening shift were super careful to not wake the other girls up as they had morning shifts. All of us had our own set of keys precisely for this reason, but no, apparently we were so loud a lady sleeping in another house all together woke up every night.
Another time, she came banging on our doors and ordered us to stop washing our clothes, as she didn’t approve of the second-hand washing machine we used.
She tracked down our landlady and complained to her multiple times. Fed up with her continuous complaints, our landlady verified with other neighbors to make sure we were not creating any troubles.
After that, she straight away told ‘Karen’ not to bother her with any more childish complaints.
The worst thing about her was the constant screaming from the get-go. She could never convey her issues like a normal human, but would straight away start shouting.
Thankfully, now all of us are far away from her and everything is better in life.”
If Only She Waited A Few More Seconds
“A woman asked to cut me in the prescription pickup line because she was very sick. I was also very sick and could barely stand, but she was much older and the line was at least 12 people deep. I was going to agree. But then, she snapped.
‘Oh, just forget it!’ she screamed. ‘I can already tell you’re not going to let me. You’re heartless!’
‘Well, you didn’t give me a chance to respond,’ I said.
‘That’s because you have no soul!’ this Karen yelled.
I just nodded and said, ‘You’re right. Enjoy the back of the line.’
She asked a few people behind me and they all said, ‘No.’
I heard one man say, ‘I don’t have a soul, either. Sorry.’
It was not my intention to rally the crowd behind me, but I guess once you’re fed up with rude people, you just are.”
So They Weren’t That Important
“I remember when I was in my 20s and on the first day of a job in the registration office for a day camp, a woman came into the office. She claimed the ‘first-day’ package of materials the camp had mailed out before I started working there didn’t contain badges for her kids and asked for badges. Apparently, something in the materials mentioned the kids should be wearing these badges on the first day of camp, so she was worried.
Now, I was a kid who had been working there all of one hour, but my boss had stepped out of the office, so I was on my own. I had never seen one of these packages or badges, so I had no idea how to assist the woman. I told her my boss should be back shortly. She agreed to wait.
My boss dialed my extension from another place in the building and asked how things were going, so I asked her what to do. She said the camp office was out of badges and suggested the woman just make them. We ended the call and I relayed the suggestion to the woman.
‘The manual says they need badges. I am not going to make them,’ the woman snarkily replied.
Ok, but I couldn’t make them either. I had no materials and no idea what they were even supposed to look like.
‘Not my problem,’ I lazily answered.
My boss finally came back and she spoke to the woman. The woman made a tremendous fuss about there being no badges for her kids. Finally, she stormed off in a huff.
My boss and I looked at each other, shrugged, and went back to work.
I guess the kids didn’t need the badges.”
All Those Coins, But She Couldn’t Change Her Attitude
“When I was working as a service clerk at Walgreen’s back in 2008, it was really late one night and during the last hour when the store would be open. I had just rung up a woman’s merchandise and then saw I didn’t have enough cash to give her as the change that was showing on my register.
So I took out enough quarters to make up the amount I had to give to her. She started fussing at me, saying she did not want a bunch of quarters, and ordered me to give her cash. I told her I did have the correct amount inside my register, and then she rudely demanded I call my manager out to bring some.
There were several people lined up behind her, and I thought it would be rude to make them have to wait. Since this was not long before we would be closing, the register I was working on was the only one open. Otherwise, I normally could have had another employee take over a different one and check out those other customers.
I paged the only assistant manager on duty, and let him know I needed that amount of cash brought up to the register. It took almost five minutes for him to come out since he was working in the office and busy handling paperwork. So I saw those other customers not looking very pleased they were being held up.
The guy finally came walking up and gave that rude woman what she demanded. I was so glad when she walked out of the store, and felt like apologizing to those other customers for being made to wait just because she thought that she was ‘so special’. It was people like her who made me hate having to work in retail.”
There’s A Lot To Unpack Here
“When I was 20, my husband, our daughter, and I rented the house I grew up in from my stepfather. I had lived in that house since I was 11, all of our close neighbors knew and thought of me as part of their family. We were very close.
At this time I was in the Army, and my husband was in the oilfield (still is 15 years later). I had just gotten off, had changed into civilian clothes, and picked up my daughter from my mom. I was tired after spending a hot day in the back of 18-wheelers unloading/ loading shipments.
When I was nearly home, I saw a small dog running down the busy highway and decided to save it from being hit. I called it over to my truck, where he jumped right in. I then pulled forward into an area that was safe so I could call the vet’s office that was on the rabies tag.
The dog jumped on my 18-month-old daughter, scratching her face pretty bad, so I opened the door to place him into the back while I got contact information for his owners.
He bolted. Just as a car pulled up behind me. As I was trying to catch this dog again, the lady driving the car jumped out and began screaming I was dumping the dog. I pointed out it had a collar with tags. That didn’t matter. She was adamant I was dumping the dog and she was going to make me regret that mistake.
I finally got the dog while the harpy continued to screech at me. I pointed at the tag again, telling her it’s not my dog, I saved it from being run over and was attempting to call the vet’s office to find its owner.
‘Yeah right, I’m so sure that’s what you are! You’re such an upstanding citizen! Call the vet’s office so I have proof you dumped that dog!’ she continued to screech.
I told her she was a complete idiot, why would I dump a dog with tags linking it to me? I called the vet, no answer. I said this and said I was taking him home with me so he didn’t get hit while I got a hold of the vet’s office.
I put the dog in the back while I went home. She followed me the whole way, driving on my bumper. She pulled into my driveway and continued to berate me. Calling me names and accusing me of dumping dogs all over the neighborhood. Saying that since I had moved in, the neighborhood had gone downhill and that I was trash.
I had enough. Losing my temper, I started towards her, screaming at the top of my lungs for her to leave my property or I was going to remove her myself. She jumped into her car, backed up to the street, then began to scream at me from the street, which drew the attention of my neighbors.
I got my daughter out of the truck and had tied the dog to the fire hydrant when I heard her say to my neighbor, ‘Oh look, I bet she neglects that baby too,’
Nope she really did not just say that. She and my neighbor both realize she had gone too far, as I was charging at her ready to beat the snot out of her.
He tells her she needs to get in her car and leave. She gets in, but refuses to leave. I go get my phone to call my dad so he can tell her that it’s not my dog.
He calmed me down and says, ‘Let me talk to her.’
As I approach, I see her window is cracked a couple of inches and hear her crying on the phone, ‘Please officer hurry I’m afraid for my life. I think she’s going to kill me! She may have a weapon on her! She’s coming to my window to try to get me! Help me!’
I repeat what she said to my dad, who is now angry too. I knocked and told her, ‘My dad wants to speak to you.’
She refused. I tell my dad this and he says he’s on his way, don’t do anything stupid.
I get my daughter, who had been playing in her playpen but was getting angry. Talking to my neighbor, I told him what was going on and he said to just stay calm and it will all be settled when the officer got there.
My dad and the sheriff’s deputy got there at the same time. The lady jumped out and begins to scream I was attempting to dump the dog and I had threatened her life.
We tell both our sides and he called the vet’s office to confirm it isn’t my dog, even though my dad tells him we only have two dogs, a chihuahua, and a chow. The vet confirmed the owners and their addresses, which wasn’t me.
They said for me to stick it into their window, and thanks for getting him out of traffic. That wasn’t good enough for that woman. She begins to demand me to be arrested for threatening her life, a terrible mother, and probably a substance addict.
My dad starts laughing and says, ‘Well, Specialist Morris, how did you pass our mandatory substance test the whole unit had to take?’
I responded with, ‘Well, Sergeant Hembree, I just stay away from the pipe.’
The police officer tells the lady to go home, and we’ll get the dog taken care of. The dog ended up back home and I was not arrested. She continued for a while trying to make my life a nightmare until she made the mistake of calling the FBI on my dad for testing an RPG simulator he was designing in the backyard.
It was literally a PVC pipe, cable, a plastic cup, and hairspray. She was soon selling her house, and the neighborhood went back to being the close-knit community it had been before she moved in and caused so many problems. We all lived happily ever after, free from Karen’s antics.”