Regrets?? -- Any major decisions in life you wish you could change??

In another thread, I lamented about one of my major life regrets.

I had the opportunity to move to Arizona 10 years earlier and didn’t. I really wish I had.

As far as relationships, I had two “nice” relationships fail and yes both were my fault. I regret the second one a bit more, as I knew better.

I had one minor financial “flub” but it wasn’t a material amount of money, so I’ll chalk that up to more of a “life lesson” vs. a regret.

Many, many years ago, I do regret sitting through the entire movie “Time Bandits”. I wanted to walk out, but waited all the way to the end… just hoping it would get better and it didn’t. I want my 1hr and 56 minutes back. (LOL)

So do you have any major regrets in life?? Any decisions you would change if you could go back in time??


I might decide not to start smoking. Not sure though. I did have many years when I was a very happy smoker. But it has buggered up my health. Swings and roundabouts there.


I’m pretty content with my life right now, and I feel that all the decisions - good, bad, or indifferent - let me to where I am, so I don’t really wish that I had done much differently. The only thing that comes to mind is I wish I had convinced my brother to marry somebody else. ANYBODY else. Too much drama. So much that I think it killed him.


Yes, the woman I was dating prior to Sunshine was a 2 pack a day smoker. I really liked her and we got along quite well. Unfortunately, she ignored the “Warning Signs” too long and when she eventually went to the doctor, she was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer. The doctor really couldn’t do much for her and she passed away rather quickly.
I never asked her if she regretted smoking, as there was no reason to upset her… the damage was done. Although, I’m sure she did.


I’m sorry for your loss.

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I have no regrets.

Are there things I would have done differently if I were to do them again? Sure, of course.

But that said, I still do not regret any decision that I have made.

Life is too short for regrets.


Not really. Regrets are kind of pointless & will poison your overall well-being if you dwell on past mistakes too much or too long.

I wish I’d moved to Berlin much sooner than I did, but I moved there just in time to meet the love of my life, so… Saul Goodman :wink:

PS: I’m with @Harters on the smoking. 13 was a bit early, and I smoked for far too many years.

PPS: @Desert-Dan I felt that way about “Armageddon” and “Tree of Life,” but the latter took almost 3 hours of my lifetime I’ll never get back :rofl:

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TBH, I find the idea too depressing. One of the last words my mother said to me before she died (25+ years ago) was a word similar to “regret” when I asked her what she was thinking about. I feel fortunate the word eludes me now; often I can’t get it out of my head.

ETA I think it was lament.


I’m happy now, but really hosed myself over in 1991. This one’s a bit complex, so skip if you don’t want to read a sad sack story.

I was in the Army and my ETS date was end-Oct 1991, after 8 years of service. I had enough promotion points to get to staff sergeant (Army = E6), but did not have enough time left in service. I’d need to extend my service through end-January 1992 to accept the promotion.

But the folks at the U where I was going to go for my chemical engineering degree said I could start on the Spring semester, so that’s what I wanted to do (edit - I had enough other credits from local colleges while in the Army that I hoped to finish in 3 years). So I turned down the promotion, and did not extend my service, because that would have interfered with starting college in that Spring semester.

Two things then happened. After I got out of the Army in mid November the school said, “Oh, you said chemical ENGINEERING - no you can’t start in the Spring semester because there are a sequence of physics and chem classes you have to take, and they’re only offered in order fall-spring-fall. So sorry!”.

Then in early January, President Clinton signed a military draw-down executive order (because not so many of us were needed now that Desert Storm was done) which included a provision that anyone with 8+ years and E6 rank were considered lifers who would be offered for the first time ever, or since, separation bonuses for enlisted non-commissioned officers.

I lost over $120K in 1992 dollars ($260K today) because I believed the ignorant admin lady who said “Of course you can start ChE in the Spring Semester”.

Grr. So yeah, I’d like to go back and change that one. Instead, I got out of the Army with a paid-off car and no money in the bank except the 60 days of backed up vacation they paid me, which amounted to something like $3500.


You are correct… I didn’t have the greatest experience with Advisors or Admin staff at my college, either.

I mean they have one job to do… look up the course requirements and schedule you accordingly and they can’t even get that right.

I can’t speak for you, but my tuition was not cheap and with paying those prices you’d think they would have competent staff.


“Days are a stupid length. They are just long enough to get regret and then you have to go to bed.” — Dylan Moran


Definitely understand, but I still can’t complain much about college costs. I went to the University of Illinois for my UG ChE degree [edit see note] and they had a program where tuition for returning Illinois veterans was completely waived at any in-state university.

I just had to work to pay for my apartment and engineering fees and my books. Although the latter 2 were not cheap - I worked about 30 hours per week to avoid pulling too much in loans and managed to graduate with only about $7K total in loans.

But still… to have had that $120K in-pocket back then… MAN!

Oh, well. Who knows, I might have turned into a drunk or gambling addict, or some such, and never hooked up with the love of my life for the last 30 years.

God is Good.


Edit/note: I also got lucky in deciding to go to a (then) fairly cheap law school. My company at the time where I worked as a scientist/engineer offered $3500/year for schooling cost coverage as long as your boss said it was likely good for the company in the end, which my boss did do. So I paid out-of-pocket something like $3K/year for law school. Dirt cheap law degree.


Probably not selling stock in a company I had left in December 1999 after it was purchased by another company (my job was essentially moving to their Atlanta headquarters after the purchase). I was a minority “founder” in my company and while I had nowhere near the number of shares the 5 main founders did, it was still a nice chunk of change.

This was in Q1 2000, at the height of the stock market boom and dotcom bubble. But I knew nothing about the stock market nor how to go about anything to do with selling stock. Should have just gone to a Fidelity financial advisor…but hindsight. :woman_shrugging:

The market started to drop in mid-April, and I naively thought “oh, it’ll go back up again.” Come October, I knew it wouldn’t be happening. In Nov. 2001, the company that had bought my old company merged with their major competitor, and in July 2002, the joint company declared bankruptcy.

I lost in the neighborhood of $750,000 if I had sold in early April 2000 when I was allowed to sell my shares. Somewhere in my very old files, I have a worthless stock certificate.

A learning experience, to say the least. But my experiences in the following 23 years wouldn’t have been the same if I had sold, so…


Or maybe not come home!

I was active duty at the time, got out in '94, when they were starting to say soon they wouldn’t have to let me go even if my time was up!

Sorry. :pleading_face:I tried to resist adding that ( deleted twice!), and can’t imagine how upset I would be in your place.

P.S. I feel the same way about my medical degree! $3000.00/year! My undergrad was even cheaper if you paid for it; instead I owed the Air Force! If I had to come up with a regret,joining the military may have been it, but it was a very useful experience . I sometimes regretted joining the AF for such cheap tuition ( vs the rest of my ROTC cohort at the spendy Georgetown, George Washington U, etc) , but my experience at an HBCU was invaluable.


Some misgivings maybe, but no regrets. The journey has been tough at times, quite an education, yet one that I appreciate.
If my trip around the sun ends tomorrow, I’m fine with it all.


Ouch… really sorry to hear.


Cheap in-state law school? My first year tuition, per the catalog archives …

US News says the in-state tuition is currently … $36,313

I got a law degree for less than $1800. Total. Yes it was a long time ago, but boy does this outstrip inflation.


OMG I LOVE Dylan Moran.

Thanks. He was 57, worked out regularly, wasn’t overweight (although we do have a history of high blood pressure and cholesterol), and seemed pretty fit. Had a heart attack in the ER waiting room. I still think the stress induced by the drama she brought into his life was the major contributing factor. Her high maintenance + her difficult ex + her spoiled kids + her parents moving in = not a fun time for Onii-san. I miss him every day.


Life events have given me a bit of a dark sense of humour. This is one of my favourites: