Every guy has thought about their “dream girl”, that elusive combination of attractive qualities that would make them almost eternally happy. For some it’s mostly physical, with hair color, body type, and height among the most important qualities they seek in a woman. For others it’s all about wit, intelligence, compassion, or any number of other qualities that set a man’s heart – and other organs – aflutter. Or maybe he’s just looking for a good cook.
But there’s one quality that’s universally reviled, one that sends men running for the hills as fast as if a bomb were about to explode: That’s craziness.
Yes, ladies, it’s unfair, but your gender has gotten a reputation for producing some serious psychos. Guys might joke about how great crazy girls are in bed, but the truth of the matter is that nobody likes having their stuff set on fire. Or getting body parts cut off. Or getting abducted. Obviously, it would be best to just avoid dating crazy girls in the first place, but that’s not always possible. Sometimes a guy’s crazy detection is on the fritz, short circuited by a pretty face or a girl’s total lack of inhibition. We’re stupid like that.
How crazy is crazy? Let’s just say that those earlier examples aren’t far off. The women on this list have done some pretty twisted things to their men. On the bright side, it means you don’t have to feel so weird about sending thirty texts to that person who just won’t call you back. Of course, it’s probably best not, but be reassured that there are people out there who have done way, way worse.
Here are just a few of the craziest wives and girlfriends ever.
5. Lisa Nowak
You might remember this woman from a few years back. Lisa Nowak, an astronaut, was struck by cupid’s arrow and fell head over heels for fellow astronaut William Oefelein. Trouble is, the two ended up splitting, and he got involved with one Colleen Shipman, herself a member of the United States Air Force.
A normal person might feel jealous, and if Nowak had just gotten drunk off a bottle of red while her friends assured her that she was way prettier than that skank he was with now, someone else would have her spot on this list. But no, Nowak was not going to be denied her man.
She drove 900 miles from Houston to Florida, attacking Shipman at an airport. She tried to hop in Shipman’s car, and attacked her with pepper spray. Worse, she was found to have a number of weapons in her possession, which led prosecutors to go after her for attempted murder. Taking a plea deal, Nowak got off with a year of probation, court mandated community service and anger management classes. She was also told to stay away from Shipman and Oefelein. That’s probably for the best.
4. Sharon Irons
Crazy women are a scary prospect, but there’s legitimate panic involved when a crazy woman is discovered to be baby crazy – especially when she’s able to trick her way into getting what she wants.
There are all kinds of stories out there of women employing subterfuge to get themselves pregnant, often for the purposes of trapping a man in a relationship, or for getting child support payments out of him. “Accidentally” forgetting to take the birth control pill is a classic, as is tampering with condoms, but Dr. Sharon Irons – yes, this woman is a doctor – took things to a whole ‘nother level.
See, Irons had been fellating Dr. Richard O. Phillips back in 1999, and did so to completion. That’s relevant, because Irons then used the semen she had *collected* and inseminated herself with it. Which led to the birth of a child… and in turn led to Phillips being sued by Irons for child support. It would be a hilarious story if Irons hadn’t won. When Phillips counter-sued for emotional distress, the judge’s decision said, quote, that “when plaintiff ‘delivered’ his sperm, it was a gift — an absolute and irrevocable transfer of title to property from a donor to a donee,” and “There was no agreement that the original deposit would be returned upon request.”
There’s too much wrong with that story to even begin to get into, but a worrying precedent was set by the judge’s decision that may serve as an important warning for the men out there: The law will side with a child before it will side with you, and the only safe place to ejaculate is into a roaring fire. Do with that what you will.
3. Catherine Kieu
Here’s something about guys that bears mentioning: we’re rather fond of our genitalia. Specifically when it’s attached to our bodies. So when a crazy person like Catherine Kieu does crazy person stuff like drugging her husband and then cutting off his penis and throwing it in the garbage disposal, we’re unlikely to want to stick around.
She did that because he had threatened her with divorce. Was she hoping no other woman would want him? Was she thinking he’d see the error of his ways and beg her to take him back? Whatever her thought process, it’s safe to throw that into the “poorly thought out” category.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Kieu’s lawyer argued that she was mentally unstable. He said the incident came about because of abuse earlier in her life, as well as at the hands of her husband. While that does paint the whole incident in a different light, we can still turn the ordeal into a teachable moment for all. For ladies in a similar situation – it’s much easier to plead your case for giving the relationship a second chance when you’re not the person who cut off a man’s penis and threw it into a garbage disposal. So don’t be that person. And for the men in a similar situation – stop abusing your lady. If you won’t stop for glaringly obvious moral reasons, stop because there’s a chance that she’ll cut your penis off and throw it into a garbage disposal. Sheesh.
2. Kristina Pongracz
There are several reasons why old men shouldn’t be in relationships with much younger women. First of all, it’s pretty creepy. Second of all, if you have money, that’s probably what they’re after. And third, if you’re not shuffling off the mortal coil quick enough, they can easily help you along.
That’s the story behind Kristina Pongracz, who was in a relationship with a 77-year-old man when she was 28. Ick. But it gets worse, because dating a really old guy isn’t enough to qualify you for the crazy list. No, Pongracz makes it because when old man boyfriend William Herchenrider tried to break up with her, she beat him so severely that he later died of his injuries. Also, she used his cane to do it.
There’s a sick poetry to that, an artistic brutality involved in killing a man with something that’s meant to help him live a more able life. Luckily, the courts care more for the law than they do for the imagery of a murder, and so Pongracz was sentenced to 15 years in the slammer. For her part, Pongracz says she is sorry, and hopes that Herchenrider’s family will forgive her in time, as “Bill was my family too.” Touching.
1. Shirley Turner
This one is a doozie. It isn’t often that a person is so crazy that actual laws, as well as a documentary, are made in reaction to that crazy. Shirley Turner is a pretty special kind of crazy. Crazy can sometimes be funny, but there’s nothing even remotely amusing about this story.
Turner was a twice-divorced doctor (what is it with all these doctors?) who got involved with Andrew Bagby, a medical student. The relationship went south and Bagby broke up with her, but the two arranged to meet up after Turner drove from Iowa to Pennsylvania in one night. Bagby was later found dead, Turner fled to Canada, and the extradition process was taking a while, so Turner was sitting pretty up in the great white north.
This was all complicated by the fact that Turner had given birth to Bagby’s son, Zachary, who nobody had known about. With Turner in jail, Andrew’s parents moved to Canada to take care of Zachary. And then Turner managed to get out and get back custody.
*Spoiler alert for the documentary film Dear Zachary* As you might have guessed, the story does not end well. Turner killed herself, and baby Zachary, by throwing herself and her child into the ocean.
The entire thing was documented in the film Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father, which picks up the story right after Andrew’s death and follows it through to its shocking and unfortunate end. The incident also led to Canada changing its bail laws in an effort to prevent another incident like this from occurring, so at least some good came of it. Still, the level of crazy involved in all of this gives us the willies.
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