Each day brings us a new chance at humiliation through accidents made through technology and social media. Accidentally hitting the "share to Facebook" button on Pornhub, pocket dialing your boss while you're in the bathroom, sending a dirty word to your mom because of Autocorrect, accidentally tweeting a vagina plane from your work account instead of personal, and on and on.
But there's one thing so awful, so terrible, that most of us would never be able to recover emotionally: accidentally sexting your significant other's parents.
Mike Dempster of Washington state (and a friend of mine) did this and lived to tell the tale, so we interviewed him to find out what it's like to feel the worst feeling on Earth.
Please 🙏 for him.
This interview was conducted over instant message and has been edited for clarity.
So.... what the hell happened?
Mike Dempster: My girlfriend and I live 300 miles away, and we see each other every other weekend – I fly there once a month, and she flies here once a month, at two week intervals. Between those weekends, we put in the necessary effort to make this work. Like "dates" and sexting.
Last night, I was hanging out with her watching a movie via Facetime – we both queue up the same movie on Netflix and start it at the same time and Facetime simultaneously. It's like a date, or as best we can approximate a date when we live far apart. I fell asleep, and at the end of the movie, she woke me up, like, "Baby. BABY!" Then I went to bed.
But when I got to bed, she'd done something really awesome for me… She'd sent a hot photo (using the selfie stick I bought her kinda half for this purpose). Very hot. First, she's beautiful. So pretty. And warm and kind and really does it for me. And she's pretty much naked.
Ooh la la.
MD: Ha. She's naked. So I respond: "My dick is crazy hard right now" followed by the emoji of a monkey covering his ears. A few minutes go by, and she's like "...??"
Then I realize I sent that text to her mom, who was "[girlfriend]'s Mom" in my phone.
DON'T SAVE YOUR GIRLFRIEND'S MOM AS THAT IN YOUR PHONE. Save it as her name. She is a person and you will pay.
So that would be the lesson you'd want everyone to know? Use your girlfriend's mother's real name?
MD: Yes. Ultimately, this was bad Contact management. Also, sleepiness.
How did the mother respond?
MD: So first when I realize what happened I text her a follow up: "Oh my God, [Girlfriend's Mom]. I'm so embarrassed. Long-distance relationships are rough."
And she doesn't reply.
What is going through your mind right then?
MD: Pretty much the worst stuff. The last thing you want in your future in-laws' minds is your penis, unless maybe they're really thirsty for grandbabies. So my girlfriend is dying laughing as I go to sleep. And still laughing in the AM. She gets a call in the morning from her mom, who has been laughing for 30 minutes.
For that minute or so where you realized what happened, what was it like?
MD: Horror. I was instantly wide-awake. My heart was RACING. My worst fear was a flat response, like, "Wrong number." because that would mean she's PISSED. But no response was torture! Anything could be coming. It was like the end of Sopranos of sexts. Took me an hour to go back to sleep. Or: an hour of my girlfriend laughing as I tried to go back to sleep.
So your girlfriend thought it was funny?
MD: Oh yeah. She's great. I'm very lucky. And her mom says she's still brainstorming responses to my texts, but is probably going with "Yeah, I hear it's pretty hard."
Sounds like her mom is pretty cool. Do you think it'll be weird the next time you see her mom?
MD: Definitely. Just a badass lady. But that doesn't mean I don't have crippling shame and embarrassment. She says her mom doesn't care at all. She and her ex-husband are military, so she gets it. But, "If he ever thinks he's going to hear the end of it..."
So all in all, it sounds like this was a bonding experience for you and your girlfriend's family.
MD: Yeah at it's core it communicates something important, I think, and it's that I'm passionate about their daughter.
Lesson learned: Make sure you don't use your partner's name as the contact for his or her parents in your phone.
Katie Notopoulos is a senior editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York. Notopoulos writes about tech and internet culture is cohost of the Internet Explorer podcast.
Contact Katie Notopoulos at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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