I hit the back of a tractor trailer on my mom's birthday because I was driving distracted. Since the accident I have had over 20 surgeries and took over a year to fully recover. Even now they still haven't been able to get me back to exactly where I was before the accident. I started giving speeches after the accident to try and prevent others from ending up like me or worse. I travel the country sharing my story hoping to save lives and inspire others.


http://www.today.com/video/today/51940189 http://i.imgur.com/G1Z1JGt.jpg http://i.imgur.com/85OLRbt.jpg http://i.imgur.com/4RFCAIn.jpg

Comments: 616 • Responses: 75  • Date: 

GoodHabit205 karma

First, I just wanted to say I admire your willingness to say "Look how stupid I was. If I had any intelligence at all, I could've avoided all this". I think about how distracted drivers continue to kill innocent people and it just makes me angry because it's all so easy to stop. (My mother's parked car was demolished by a teen driving a truck and texting on his cell phone. She had just got out of the car seconds before he crashed into it, and if she'd been in the car, the drivers section took the brunt of the hit and she wouldn't have survived.)

My question was towards your 20 surgeries? Your eye is the obvious one, but what else happened? You mentioned a medically induced coma, so that implies you perhaps had some brain damage? And you say you're still not fully recovered... What are the injuries we can't see?

mndklhr116 karma

I really appreciate you being so kind about it and understanding why I do what I do. That being said, I had to have the right side of my face completely rebuilt. My ankle was snapped. My jaw was fractured in four places. And yes, my brain was swollen so they put me in the medically induced coma to ensure they could monitor any further traumatic brain injuries. The stuff that still isn't totally fixed are mostly my teeth. I'm still missing some and they are broken. I also had my face fixed but even after multiple plates, screws, and plastic surgery it will never look like it once did.

GoodHabit36 karma

Thanks so much for your reply. I was expecting something like headaches or dizziness. I did not realize how extensive your damage was. The woman I saw in the video looks like a very pretty young lady who happens to be missing an eye. There's no hint of anything further. You must have excellent doctors and worked hard on your physiotherapy for everything to seem so normal. Best of wishes and I hope things only continue to improve.

mndklhr24 karma

I really appreciate that! I do have some memory loss and I'm not without pain or other issues but I'm very lucky! I'm happy to be alive.

5hawnking518 karma

i know this is vain, but you're still very attractive. Thank you for being a caring individual, and not letting your setbacks bring you down, you are setting a great example on how to rebound from tragedy.

Edit for grammar, thanks for keeping me on the path of the righteous, grammar nazis! =D

mndklhr17 karma

I appreciate the compliment! I do the best I can in all aspects!

DoctorRobert42017 karma

It really is remarkable and admirable to see your response and attitude. People are so dedicated to making car accidents somebody else's fault, which will never result in safer driving practices and fewer accidents. Keep being great. (and driving safe! :P)

mndklhr7 karma

Thank you!!!

unmisunderestimated13 karma


mndklhr12 karma

I wasn't super aware if them because the accident was in 2008. I don't think it was as prevalent. I'm not sure though. I'm a little different because it wasn't specifically texting. I isn't hurt anyone but me and it was my fault. There aren't many advocates like that.

RualStorge30 karma

Not really a question. I just want to thank you for this. I was a passenger in a car struck by a seventeen year old who was too busy texting and wound up t-boning us.

Fortunately we all survived with no "serious" injuries, but it ended my profession paintball career. (my ankle was completely blown spent almost three months on crutches, still have them as a silent reminder)

While your story is a sad one, you may honestly be saving lives here. (and ankles) Thank you for this.

Edit: bah didn't mean to comment to you, meant to comment to OP

mndklhr13 karma

I appreciate your support and I'm sorry to hear that the accident messed something up for you that you were passionate about. I hope you've found something else you love and I'm glad everyone was relatively uninjured!

growlzie110 karma

Are there plans to bring these talks to adults above the teen age? I feel that the urgency and immediacy of phones has created a problem in modern business. The two companies I've been with previously have encouraged talking to clients and texting while on the road. The majority of people I see during my commute using mobile devices while driving are adults. Kids are getting the message but we also need to set an example for them.

mndklhr71 karma

Absolutely! That's a great point! And yes, I do. I've even given speeches to an AARP group. There is something to be said for speaking to a group of men who are around 60+ and watch them with tears tolling down their cheeks as they hear your story. This is the stuff that makes me want to keep going. Everyone needs to hear it.

missmisfit52 karma

my boss was very surprised that I do not talk on my phone during my hour long commute (both ways) because it is dangerous. I agree with growlzie that the car is becoming like a second office for a lot of people and that scares me.

mndklhr20 karma

Me too! I know what you're saying and I'm glad you don't do it!

Aero_64 karma

As a motorcyclist, the most dangerous situations I experience on the road are most often caused by people on their cellphones. Many people don't seem to understand the amount destruction a vehicle can cause and don't operate it with the focus or attention it warrants. I want to thank you for taking up this cause and sincerely hope some change can come from your efforts

My question is whether you believe the proliferation of touchscreen device (vs older button phones) has increased the dangers of distracted driving? It seems to me that without the tactile response of physical buttons, people are forced to take their eyes off the road and put them on their phones and screens.

mndklhr34 karma

I don't worry about the difference in cell phones as much as I am concerned about the cars that allow you to do things on a screen within the vehicle. That is so dangerous and you're right about everything you said. Especially in regards to motorcycles. That's an issue in and of itself. People are just not aware of motorcycles on the road the way they should be.

pashadag32 karma


mndklhr68 karma

That's part of what makes me different. I was texting but I was also talking on the phone, using my GPS, checking my makeup and hair in the mirror, and messing with the radio stations/windows. I don't know which I was focused on when I made impact.

Troggie4263 karma

Those other guys are being asses, but I think this is a pretty revealing statement. If you're doing so much in the car that you don't know which of the things you were doing when you crashed, that's pretty much the epitome of distracted driving. It's an interesting thought, because if you were that distracted, imagine all the other things you could have missed! I guess that's kind of your point in a way. I tried texting and driving once, and damn near rear ended someone. Never again. It doesn't help my car's old without airbags and I drive stick. Makes you pay more attention when your car's primary safety feature is your driving skill.

mndklhr30 karma

That's very true. It is the point. I don't mention all those things as a means for bragging. I just want everyone to understand my level if stupidity!

16states14 karma

Wow, when you listed all those things it made me realize I do the same things as well. Really eye-opening. Thanks for doing what you do and spreading your message.

mndklhr10 karma

You're welcome! And THIS is why I do what do. Thank YOU for continuing to my reason to try and save others.

PotatosAreDelicious1 karma

Since I'm assuming you don't remember the impact. How do you know you just didn't mess up and cause the impact and it wasn't even the distractions fault?

mndklhr17 karma

I don't know how I would have missed a huge 18 wheeler on the back of it with a forklift on it and I know I had been doing several things right before I hit him but accidents happen so fast!

PotatosAreDelicious5 karma

Was he stopped or did you just rear end him?

mndklhr6 karma

He was completely stopped

Xelaion30 karma

How has the crash affected your life? Like if this is your first time near death experience what did you learn from it

mndklhr40 karma

It's changed everything. I'm really fortunate and I realize this because things could have been so much worse. I learned how strong I am now and my life is headed in a really positive direction. I learned how DUMB it is to drive distracted. I learned who I know will always be at my side and who never really was in the first place. I could go on for days about all the ways it's affected my life though.

quarkdown27 karma

During your trips to raise awareness, which has been your best and worst audience, and why?

mndklhr29 karma

That's an interesting question. I don't know that I can pinpoint one that was specifically the best because there are a lot of different things that make it great. Any speech that I leave knowing I made an impact is awesome and I love when the crowd gets into it. The worst was probably when I drove a really long distance to only speak for a couple minutes, the computer with my slideshow was messed up, the lights were so bright I couldn't see and the audience just sat there. It was pretty bad.

bigdogtruman8 karma

"It's my own fault for using PowerPoint. PowerPoint is boring." - Dwight Schrute Haha just playing man, the work you're doing is really cool and will hopefully make a change in the way people drive. Good luck.

mndklhr7 karma

Never apologizing for a Dwight quote ;-) I dig it! Thank you for the support!

lost_profit5 karma

Can you/are you allowed to drive with only one eye?

mndklhr10 karma

I can and you are allowed but its "suggested" I don't drive at night which is fine because I don't like it anyway.

Jeeonta21 karma

If you were wearing your seatbelt and wasn't speeding, what did your face impact with to be damaged that much ? Airbag failure ?

mndklhr20 karma

Great question!!! There was a forklift attached to the back end of the tractor trailer. It was a catch 22. The forklift saved my life because without it I probably would have been decapitated but because of it, it crushed the right side of my face.

krashundburn18 karma

You are very fortunate to have survived this, Amanda.

The airbag deployed as you impacted the forklift carrier, but you car continued underneath until it was finally stopped by the trailer's guard.

Because it was an under ride, the actual impact took longer, which lengthened your deceleration to a survivable rate.

The wheel and tire of the forklift basically ended up in your face after the airbag deployed. Were you belted as well?

mndklhr12 karma

Yes I was. You are very knowledgable and you're right, fortunate doesn't even begin to describe what I am.

no0gre17 karma

Glad you're recovering well. What do you believe is a common misconception about distracted driving that people tend to perceive?

mndklhr44 karma

I think that a lot of distracted driving today focuses almost solely on texting and that's definitely not the only issue. I also think that a lotof drivers think they are fine because "they've been doing it forever" or "don't completely stop looking at the road." That's so dumb! You have to focus on driving! You aren't an expert distracted driver.

xtlou41 karma

I will say, more often than not, when I see drivers talking or texting while driving, it is not a teenager or younger driver. It makes me think all the awareness efforts for teens lends belief that older drivers are perhaps capable of multitasking while driving. It's a shame, too, because holy cow are they bad at it.

John_Snuh10 karma

Of the people I've seen texting/driving since moving to my new home in Minnesota (I lived in downtown Chicago the prior two years, so didn't own a car and wasn't driving around noticing other drivers), roughly 1 in 5 of those drivers have been younger persons. I have also seen both young and old people texting with BOTH motherfrumping hands while (presumably) steering with their knee...

mndklhr20 karma

I speak to all age groups. I have spoken at high schools to kids as young as 13 and to and AARP group as old as in their 80s. The teens get it a lot but I don't focus on just one age group. I want to and am willing to speak to any age group. You wouldn't believe the stuff I've seen people do. I saw a girl painitng her fingernails and another guy playing on his laptop WHILE DRIVING!

xHaZxMaTx16 karma

I actually realized just this morning on my way to work while I was messing with my phone that even though I had been looking up from my phone frequently to make sure I was still going in a straight line, after I set my phone down I couldn't really recall all of what happened on the road around me during that time. What cars had I passed going the other direction, if any? Did the car in front of me get any closer? Just because you're looking at something doesn't mean you're focused on it; that's what clicked for me then and something I'm sure people who do drive distracted don't consider either.

mndklhr22 karma

That's the truth. Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, that's like driving the length of an entire football field, blindfolded. It's scary and I'm really happy you are coming to this realization on your own. Please be safe!

xHaZxMaTx7 karma

I hear that figure mentioned often in regards to texting while driving, but it's not even that, I don't think; you could very well be looking at the road ahead of you but be thinking about something else (how to reply to a text, for example) and not even notice the huge pothole you're about to run over or the person in the oncoming lane who is a bit too far into your own lane, etc.

mndklhr6 karma

That's a great point as well. You are very insightful and intelligent. I appreciate you sharing these thoughts with everyone!

krashundburn10 karma

You are exactly right - using the phone takes your focus off the road even when your eyes are on the road.

Using the phone and/or texting while driving is incredibly risky. In terms of both odds AND ability - it's like repeatedly driving drunk. You may get away with doing it for a long time, but eventually the odds will catch up to you.

(I've investigated crashes for 32 years.)

mndklhr5 karma

That's very true and it's why I try to stop it. I'm glad you understand!

strawberycreamcheese16 karma

I love how a texting and driving thing is a tiny bit in the corner and some random bus about Nicki minaj is what's important

mndklhr22 karma

It was Teen Vogue so you know how it goes. Nicki Minaj > Distracted Driving story

kindredflame12 karma

I find with a lot of teenage kids that the "it'll never happen to me" delusion seems to override all attempts at reason. Prior to this accident, was there really anything that could've been said to you or shown to you that would've convinced you of the dangers of distractions while driving?

mndklhr12 karma

That's a hard question to answer. I'd like to think that if I'd heard someone else tell my story to younger me as if it had happened to them that it would have made some kind of impact. I'm not under some kind of disillusionment that I will stop everyone from texting. I know that invincible feeling you're talking about and you aren't wrong. I don't think it will change every teens' actions but my hope is that it change some. That's all I can do. I hope for the best and prepare for the worst. That's with most things in life though.

AGruber7312 karma

Have you gotten behind the wheel again? If so, what was it like the first time you drove?

mndklhr14 karma

Yes, I have. I wasn't freaked out the first time I drove but it took almost two years until I did because I'd snapped my ankle after the accident. It took a long time for me to even learn how to walk again let alone drive. I do get anxiety behind tractor trailers and with sudden stops. Those sort of things upset me but for the most part I'm ok.

shafonfa11 karma

My husband has a terrible habit of texting while driving. I have asked him SO many times to stop, but I know he hasn't, because whenever we're in the car together his first instinct is to reach for his phone and begin replying when he gets a text. I snatch it when I'm with him and read the text/reply for him, but I'm positive he still does it when I'm not there. Any advice on what might get through to him (other than an accident)? It really, really worries me.

mndklhr20 karma

There are apps and technologies to prevent these things. There is an app for parents and kids so the parents can monitor but if you get him to agree to use and it doesn't give a bad report you could "reward" him ;-)

r3dlazer9 karma

I drove into the back of a truck with a trailer hitch when I was in college, on my last day of school.

Totalled my mother's car, but I and everyone else was ok. I was just looking for a good song on my stupid iPod.

Man, that sucked. Learned my lesson there - I totally changed my habits after that.

I'm sorry you've had to go through so much, but hopefully your story will help others from making the same mistake we did.

mndklhr3 karma

I hope so too! Glad everyone was ok!

Socially8roken8 karma

was there anyone else in the car with you? where your wearing your safety belt? How fast were you going and after impact did you remember any part of going to the hospital?

mndklhr13 karma

I was alone in the car. I didn't hurt anyone but myself. I was wearing my seatbelt. I was doing pretty much everything you're supposed to be doing except I was distracted. I was keep with the flow of traffic so probably somewhere around 70 mph. I was in a coma for a little while after the accident so I don't remember arriving at the hospital in the helicopter but I do remember some of what happened after I made impact while waiting for the helicopter to arrive.

Fempress_McMangina3 karma

What was the year/make/model of the car?

mndklhr8 karma

It was a '99 black acura integra

Socially8roken4 karma

was the tractor trailer at a full stop or just going slower then your speed?

mndklhr10 karma

He came to a full stop in the left hand lane because there was a grassy median and oncoming traffic coming the opposite direction on the other side. He was too big to just take the turn so he stopped to wait. There was a turning lane another couple hundred feet up but it was dusk and he didn't see it. They said accidents happen there often.

pie_is_my_name8 karma

This is really insensitive so I'm sorry if it causes you any emotional pain but you should be a pirate for halloween.

mndklhr11 karma

I was a pirate for the first Halloween after my accident when my leg was in a boot. It's the perfect peg leg! My feelings aren't hurt. Ogre is too short to take it too seriously and not laugh.

PopTheButterfly7 karma

I can't find this question, but sorry if it was already asked.

I had a friend who was Texting while driving and she ran into a ditch. She broke her arm and has back problems now, but was otherwise okay. A few months later I saw her going down the road…texting… please tell me you have learned from your mistake?

mndklhr8 karma

I definitely have! I occasionally still use a GPS because I'm directionally challenged but none of the other stuff!

AssertTrue6 karma


mndklhr2 karma

It's a problem for everyone!

solid_mercury6 karma

How do you feel about driverless/self-driving vehicles? Ho do you feel about the increasing use of automatic/technological safety features, smart cruise control, or collision avoidance? Do you think we can overcome distraction, by removing the need for so much attention?

mndklhr5 karma

I really don't know. I dot have a lot of knowledge or experience this kind of technology but I can only hope it's helpful not an added detriment.

DGeisler5 karma

I have a friend who is working on some of the new heads up displays fir Audi and VW. Basically they are touch screen computers on your dashboard. What are your thoughts on this emerging technology.

mndklhr3 karma

That's true...I mentioned this a little in a previous comment. It scares me honestly. This technology can just as dangerous as any other distraction.

Alexander_the_What4 karma

Are you working to get legislation passed to reduce distracted driving? Why or why not?

mndklhr32 karma

I don't actively pursue getting legislation passed. There is a couple reasons why. One reason is because while traveling and doing speeches, I am also a full time student so I don't have a lot of free time. I also don't push for legislation more because although I see the benefit to having laws to try and prevent it, I know for a fact that it doesn't stop people. If anything the texting laws passed have made texters move their phone from the steering wheel and into their lap further decreasing their line of vision. I'm not against legislation. I just think it will require more than that and we all play a part. My part is giving speeches, interviews, and writing to get my story out. I hope that makes sense.

Alexander_the_What12 karma

It does. I just wanted to know either way and I really appreciate your reply. Thank you for doing what you do!

mndklhr10 karma

You're very welcome! Thank you for your question and input. I appreciate it.

sporrow-18 karma

Do you make money off your speeches? Are you trying to monetize your reckless disregard for human life?

mndklhr15 karma

It was incredibly reckless. I am thankful everyday that my irresponsible behavior only hurt me though. That's a good thing. Monetizing from such a horrific incident would probably mean that I went after the truck company for stopping in the middle of the highway with a big lawsuit and making money from interviews. That simply is not the case. I haven't done any of those things. My intent is to save lives not get rich but I can appreciate the fact that you would want to make sure I wasn't being greedy after killing or hurting someone. That would be pretty messed up.

SpedWagon-15 karma

Can guarantee there is payment involved with the speeches that take place. It's absolutely ridiculous that she is profiting off this situation.

mndklhr14 karma

It depends on what I'm doing and where I'm going. Local high schools and things like that pay me absolutely nothing but I'm a college student. If I travel to TN or CA I don't have the kind of funds it requires to fly myself across the country and I have to be able to pay bills. I hope that makes sense.

reluctantor3 karma

Thank you for telling your story -- I suspect the "forklift to the face" thing will make a few people think twice about picking up their phones at 70 mph. I'm glad you're recovering so well.

Do you think you could have been told anything else before your accident that would have prevented you from texting and driving?

mndklhr2 karma

I'm really not sure but I'd like to think so!

geebs3 karma

Do you get paid for your talks?

mndklhr2 karma

Some of them, yes.

CheesingMyBallsOff2 karma

What do you think is more dangerous, texting and driving, or drinking and driving?

mndklhr2 karma

The way it affects your driving is actually very similar but also depends on how drunk you are. They're both really bad!

aarghj2 karma

will you help me turn my misfortunes into fortunes too?

mndklhr2 karma

Sure! Everyone should try and turn the negative stuff in their lives into something positive :)

seasonalskier2 karma

As many have said before me, thank you for sharing your story in hopes of saving a life. I lost my uncle to a drunk driver so this story really hits me right in the feels.

Do you also speak to kids to the dangers of drunk driving and wreckless driving/street racing? Or do you mostly keep your talks to distracted driving?

mndklhr2 karma

I mostly try to talk about the one thing that affected me because I don't want to act like I'm an expert on all of things but I also try to emphasize how seriously driving should be taken. I'm sorry to hear about your loss.

Knute52 karma

I had a wake-up call a few weeks back. I never text, but have occasionally whipped through email subjects at stop lights or stand-still traffic. I was thumbing out a five word response to an important email while at a red light (seemed like 10 seconds) when I heard honking and realized the light had turned green and the car in front of me had already travelled a good 100 feet. I felt like a first-class asshole to the folks behind me, but I also realized how your mind can drift to the focus of your text/email ... and then it's too late.

In my case there were no casualties, but it was clear indication that distracted driving (moving or stationary) is completely preventable, and nothing is so important that it can't wait - or you can't pull over.

mndklhr2 karma

I'm glad you're safe and it was a relatively easy wake-up call! Good for you!

10andback2 karma

Hi Amanda, I think it's really great that you're doing this AMA and that you're raising awareness! I was wondering how and when you decided to go public with your story. Did teen vogue contact you or did you call them yourself?

mndklhr2 karma

Actually I started about a year and a half after my accident. I started by talking to my siblings drivers education classes. It just kept growing from there an Teen Vogue contacted me. Thank you for supporting me!

jerryFrankson2 karma

Often people say they drive totally differently after they had accident, or almost had one. Do you have this too? Have you become afraid of driving in general?

Edit: Okay, you answered to the guy who asked the same thing before me, which I somehow missed. Other question then: could you describe the accident in more detail?

mndklhr1 karma

I'm not afraid to drive. It's a big responsibility and I have some anxiety but I manage. I don't drive in cities, I avoid big trucks, and sudden stops freak me out. I also don't do well with sound of sirens now. I definitely drive differently though. I'm still not a "perfect" driver but you won''t catch me driving distracted. I do my best to stay vigilant and drive smart.

jfitzg202 karma

Do you regret the decision, or do you somehow look up from it as an opportunity to help prevent others from having to deal with it and see it as something that makes you who are?

mndklhr0 karma

I try not to regret things because it doesn't really get you anywhere. I mean, there are many things that would be better if I hadn't had the accident but I try to make the best out of any situation. Idled I use my experience for good, I think I should. I hope most people realize that I'm driven by that more than anything.

Blue_Footed_Booby2 karma

Were you in a state where using your phone and driving is illegal when the accident occurred?

Do you feel that it should be illegal everywhere?

What would you do if you pulled up next to someone at a red light and they're texting?

Do you believe that the accident has changed your life for the better or for the worse?

Sorry for all of the questions!

mndklhr2 karma

Don't be sorry! Just please be patient as I work through these. The texting and driving law doesn't exist in that state at the time. I mentioned legislation in a previous comment but I never additional laws be passed is a terrible thing if its working as a deterrent. I have pulled up next to many people texting and doing many other things before but I don't do anything. It won't stop them and I'll look crazy. The accident overall changed my life in positive ways but it hasn't been an easy road.

Waiting_in_a_Eye_Que2 karma

Here's my question; I know everyone is making a deal about distracted driving, and it gets a lot of attention. As it should. But I've always been legitimately curious about the issue around talking on the phone. They say hands-free talking on the phone is still "distracted driving", and unsafe. What's the difference though, between talking on a hands-free phone, and talking to the person sitting next to you?

mndklhr6 karma

I think the only real difference is the dialing and the fact that when you're talking to a passenger they are there as a second set of eyes on the road.

berilax1 karma

First, I want to say I absolutely admire your willingness to admit your mistake. We all make them -- it's the consequences that vary. Not a person reading this hasn't made some mistake that put themselves and / or others in danger, so don't take any negative comments to that effect personally. You just happened to pay a heavy price. I hope you continue to recover, and eventually completely!

So my question: How much can you attribute your choices to be distracted to the invincibility / naiveté of young drivers? Do you / would you support more stringent laws around how kids get their licenses? I know we all drive with some distraction at some point, but kids generally take much more risk in all their activities, and when you combine that with a 3 ton weapon hurtling down the interstate, it can get ugly.

Thanks for doing this AMA!

mndklhr1 karma

I'm glad my friend Joe told me about this so that I could post something. I actually wouldn't be opposed to more stringent laws. Driving is a privilege an a responsibility! I worry about all ages though. Complacency on the road is never a good thing. Thank you for all your encouragement and kind words!

mef08d1 karma

How dreamy was Matt Lauer? I'm glad you are still improving and good luck!

mndklhr2 karma

Didn't get to meet him :-( and Ty!!

Quajek1 karma

You said you were driving distracted.

What distracted you? I immediately assumed you were texting, but you didn't say that.

mndklhr2 karma

I mentioned in comments further down but it was multiple distractions. I don't what thing it was specfically at the point of impact

DontTouchMeUglyBob1 karma

I'm constantly trying to get my siblings(20's & 30's) to stop using their phone while driving but to no avail. They continue to text, talk and do other stuff while going 80 on the highway! I feel like they think I'm trying to talk down to them and I'll admit that I probably come off condescending but only because I don't know how else to approach the situation. I unfortunately feel like the only way they'll learn is if one of them actually gets into an accident. What advice could you give me on how to approach the conversation given their age/relationship to me?

mndklhr2 karma

I would try and show them in a subtle way a story with impact. Perhaps you could share with them that you are worried they will hurt/kill themselves or someone else. Past that point there isn't too much you can do. I will be thinking of you and your plight and hoping for the best!

gerdneek11 karma

I was in a horrible accident that was partially caused by RAIN, and speeding and the other driver, who was also speeding in the RAIN, but that could have been avoided if I had not been CRYING. Not a perfect driver to this day, but my son and I have a game that involves the non-drivers making a list of "things that aren't driving that are being done while behind the wheel" and correlating the lack of attention to the road to driving skill. I truly believe if more people were willing to be honest about the stupid shit they did that contributed to accidents, we MIGHT have marginally less accidents.

mndklhr5 karma

I agree with you and I'm sorry to hear about your accident. I hope you are doing well now though!

shalene1 karma

What would you have missed so far if you would have died?

mndklhr5 karma

EVERYTHING! The people I love, the opportunity to go to school, all the things I've experienced since the accident. There are so many things. I'm very fortunate and try to enjoy life every single day!

dangerouslyloose0 karma

Thanks for sharing this and I'm glad you're doing better! I love that you went as a pirate for Halloween:) I had a neck brace after my car accident (other driver asleep at wheel) & resulting surgery, so I went as Erin Brockovich:)

Just out of curiosity, what/who were you texting when the accident happened? (I can't help thinking of the "Texting: It Can Wait" ad campaign)

Have you ever partnered with another speaker who's lost a loved one due to distracted driving? We had a pair of guest speakers (mother of victim and convicted drunk driver) who talked to our HS health class together on the same day. Pretty powerful stuff.

mndklhr2 karma

It's often a group of us who go and speak. It's rarely me and the same other people. I find that it helps to hear from a couple different perspectives. As far as what and who I was texting, I'm really not sure and I was doing other things other than just texting so I'm not even sure if it was that one distraction specifically.

Jimmers1231-1 karma

Are Kathy and Houda constantly drunk?

mndklhr1 karma

I only met them once and they did not appear drunk

coonta-1 karma

I know some one who won't Txt and drive again I go absolutely nuts at my friends for this thank you for giving me something to show those stupid cunts

mndklhr3 karma

No problemo!

smartalbert-2 karma

once uppon a time i was driving with no permit and i have the type of personality that gets bored, so i started to drive in an amusing way and crashed. real lucky no damages to myself or the vehicle, it was winter and the truck was planted nose first in the ditch. never got behind the wheel again; it could be useful for my job right now but i am worried it would be only a matter of time before it happens again. maybe i should take adderall or something then take it from there.

mndklhr2 karma

I think you should be fine. I understand that it may not seem super exciting but if you learn to drive and actively watch all other vehicles it's far from boring. I hope you can work on being able to drive. Good luck and please be safe!

Phathom-2 karma

How much time will you be serving?

mndklhr1 karma

Serving? Serving what?

mndklhr1 karma

I won't e serving time because I didn't hurt or kill anyone?

chemiloco-4 karma

What's your favorite idea?

Mine is being creative!

mndklhr3 karma

Ummm...what? I don't understand.

handsomekorean-8 karma

hope no one on the other end was hurt cause of you and your distracted driving.

mndklhr4 karma

Please read other comments. I didn't hurt or kill anyone. The only person injured in my accident was me.

funkarama-18 karma

I was texting but I was also talking on the phone, using my GPS, checking my makeup and hair in the mirror, and messing with the radio stations/windows.

What is wrong with you? How could you possibly feel that it would be OK to do this type of thing while driving? (Serious question, please answer)

How old were you when this happened?

mndklhr15 karma

I don't think there is anything "wrong" with me aside from the fact that I was naive and I thought I was invincible. I was 20 at the time and I am 25 now. I made a mistake. I recognize how dumb it is now. I wasn't doing all 5 or 6 things at the exact same time but those are things many drivers juggle while driving. I'm not making excuses though. It's not ok. I'm just so happy that I didn't hurt or kill anyone. The only person who suffered from my irresponsibility was me.

SpedWagon-23 karma

Caused by your own stupidity. No sympathy here.

mndklhr15 karma

It really was stupid, believe me, I know. No arguments here. As far as sympathy goes, I'm glad you aren't giving that either. I don't want sympathy. I WANT to save lives. So, thank you. You're absolutely right.