10 of the worst Thanksgiving horror stories from Reddit

Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time to gather with family over good food and drink, but things don't always go exactly as planned.

As Reddit users are more than happy to share in several different forums, Thanksgiving isn't always the festive feast they hoped it would be — and they have no shortage of crazy, disgusting, or just plain odd stories to tell. 

If you think your turkey-days are over the-top, these Thanksgiving horror stories will have you feeling grateful for every uneventful holiday meal you've ever celebrated:

An emotional evening

“As a paramedic, holidays were not something guaranteed. […] One year I was working Thanksgiving and […] we get a request by police to respond to the scene of a domestic situation. It's 2 p.m. in the afternoon and most everyone is sitting down to eat their turkey. This family was the same, except an argument started over something pretty silly. I think it was about who should carve the turkey. Anyway, [the] argument becomes heated, fists begin to fly between the men. Women are screaming at the men to stop it. One of the women grabs her purse and takes out her pepper spray and proceeds to pepper-spray the men who are fighting. Another woman grabs her own spray and sprays the first woman. This was all done while still around the table. Another person at the table calls the police. By the time the police arrive the fight has stopped but now there are [three] people with pepper spray in their eyes, the dinner is ruined and others are leaving.”

– contributed by Reddit user tobusytocare

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A dishwasher disaster

“I burned water and flooded the house with bubbles."

"It was the first Thanksgiving I had ever cooked, and what made it worse was that my future in-laws were coming over. They are both extremely high-powered business people. […]

I tried to cook and prepare everything in one day, which was a mistake. Their plane landed and my future-spouse went to go pick them up while I watched the food cook. I decided that all the dirty cooking dishes needed to be washed before they arrived and began loading the dishwasher. Unfortunately I had no dish-tabs and decided to use dish-soap. […] Looking back I believe a dime-sized amount would have sufficed, but I was panicking and just squeezed the bottle liberally. Ten or fifteen minutes later I started noticing a film of bubbles pouring out of the bottom of the dish washer. […] The jets hadn't stopped completely when I opened the door and sprayed some of the bubbles onto the ceiling. […] Somewhere in the process of cleaning up the bubbles and running up and down the stairs to fetch more absorbent materials, I remembered the pot I left on the stove. A horrible black, [smoky] stench greeted me about the same time and the fire alarm above the stove was chirping. The water had boiled away and the pot was dry as a bone and super hot, the material it was made out of started to crack and left a horrible smell wafting up in the kitchen.”

– Reddit user Battle_mommy

The too-big turkey

“The time we had to remove the oven door to get the turkey out.”

– Reddit user kazurious

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Cat got your pies?

“My sister showed up with [four] pumpkin pies, each pie had a cat footprint in it, I took one home and threw it away, I think we all did.”

– Reddit user moneydearest

Bait and switch

“[It was] my first semester of university after moving to Canada from America. My uncle offered to have me over. I spend 12 hours travelling from my university to his place, only for him to put me to work on demolishing the bathroom tiles. Then, he puts me to work on figuring out how many tiles he needs. Then, it's time for me to go home on a 12-hour journey and have a midterm. I was told we'd be celebrating Thanksgiving. I didn't even get a nice dinner out of it.”

Deleted Reddit user

A nauseous night to remember

“Happened years ago. My nephew wasn't feeling very good and decided to eat way too much food. Threw up all over the dining room table where the family was eating. Spent the next hour outside in the freezing cold trying not to vomit. Apparently I'm the type of person that can't see, smell, or hear someone throwing up without getting extremely nauseous.”

– Reddit user VaporRadioMan2014

Grandma’s extra ingredient

“Found grandma's wedding ring in the turkey one year … she did not even know it was not on her finger.”

– Reddit user CAN_ZIGZAG

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A Thanksgiving story

“My mom’s short-haired black lab stole the turkey roll (yes it’s a thing) from the kitchen counter and my mom caught her, had a tug of war between the dog and her. Dog won, we ordered Chinese instead.”

– Reddit user Blueeyedfire

The grouchy grandpa

“The night before Thanksgiving, we were helping prepare dinner at my grandfather's apartment in New York. His then-girlfriend was there helping us cook. My grandfather learned that the place we were ordering part of our dinner from had messed up, and we weren't getting cranberry sauce. My grandfather, who had a temper, threw a fit and was yelling at the man on the phone. His girlfriend tried to calm him down, and he yelled at her. They got in a screaming match, which ended with her taking the turkey, out of the oven, and outside the apartment with her.

"We ended up eating at a crummy Chinese restaurant on Thanksgiving.”

– Reddit user ElderCunningham

A mother-in-law and her microwave

"My in-laws are terrible cooks and my [mother in law] is easily stressed. To avoid the stress, she cooked everything two weeks ago, froze all the food, then reheated in the microwave just before eating. We're talking leathery ham pieces soaking it pools of fat, bland turkey with messed-up texture from being frozen, mashed potatoes with chunky globs of cream cheese, and cream of mushroom straight from the can spooned on top of green beans with onions […] no mixing, no heating in the oven.

"Other meals have consisted of expired ingredients and on-the-edge rotten produce.

"We 'took a walk' and went to the gas station to eat a hot dog."

– Reddit user ilmwa