msnbc.com
updated 7/19/2007 4:46:01 PM ET 2007-07-19T20:46:01

Have you heard? Our readers dished about gossiping and being gossiped about in response to an MSNBC.com story about the potential benefits of being a blabbermouth.

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Of course, it's only fun until you get caught. Jean of Roseland, N.J., and her co-workers were gossiping about a heavy woman at work, calling her "Muffin Top," among other things, when the woman overheard.

"After it was all said and done, we were the one that looked like idiots," Jean writes, "because not only did human resources get involved, but we are no models either. We regret it."

It's even worse when the rumors are about you. Stephanie of Salt Lake City writes that she had to quit her job because her the gossiping there was so hurtful. Still, one reader had a cheery outlook on being gossiped about.

"I look at it this way — if they are talking about me, at least they are not talking about someone else," writes Jennifer.

Want more dirt? Keep reading for more responses.

My sister and I were talking about another sister of ours negatively. She came home early than we expected and overheard half the conversation. She was so hurt and it took months to get her trust again.
— Racquel

My roommate was crazy about going out every night in order to meet guys because she was getting desperate about getting married and thought that she needed to be aggressive about it. I was totally annoyed by this and told a friend about it. I even exaggerated a little. Little did I know that my friend knew my roommate's best friend and told her about my comment. My roommate was furious and confronted me. It felt so bad getting caught. I totally denied it, but she did not buy it and got very mad.
— Natalia, Austin, Texas

I was talking to my friend Amy at school about my other friend Thalia. I was talking about Thalia's hair style. It was really bad, even though I told her it looked good. While I was talking to Amy, Thalia came up behind me and told me what she heard. I apologized to her but she was still upset I had lied to her. She decided not to hang out with us anymore but we are still friends. Gossip can be good sometimes but it can also get you into trouble!
— Madison, San Diego

It ruined a friendship that I valued and hurt my friend. I didn't participate in gossip expecting these end results; however that is what I got. In the future, gossip has no appeal for me — not ever again.
— Anonymous

I recently moved in with my friends and I found out they started talking about me, saying things like, "Why does she always have to hang out downstairs with us?" They are in a relationship so they wanted their privacy. I totally understand but then I heard them talking about how I run the house and I act like I'm their mom. Um, excuse me, no I don't! So I kind of blew up and now I'm moving out on the first of August. Instead of talking to them I yelled. I'm still pretty heated about it so I don't regret yelling.
— Maddy, Nevada

I was IMing with my friend online about a mutual acquaintance of ours. It got pretty nasty, which was unfortunate, because the girl we were talking about turned out to have hacked on to my friend's screenname! I was telling her everything I thought about her, none of which was very complimentary. Needless to say, we haven't spoken since.
— Anonymous

It's the very worst when you are gossiping about someone through a text message and inadvertently text the message to the person you are talking about!!! I've had it happen to many a friend as well as myself. It really isn't that uncommon.
— Mona, San Ramon, Calif.

I was recently the subject of some gossip. I think I handled it rather well. My husband and I were fortunate enough to purchase a new widescreen TV, and about three weeks later he purchased a used convertible. We immediately became the center of conversation. Little did those people know that my husband and I make payments monthly on the TV, and my husband took on a second job to pay his car payment. No one had anything nice to say, even though we both work very hard for what we have.
— Jennifer

I started a new job and became instant friends with the most sought-after bachelor in the place. We were both single, and our friendship evolved into a romance, which wasn't a secret, but we were very discreet in the office. Outside the office was a different story. We were spotted in the tropical fish store, selecting fish for our aquariums in our respective homes. The woman who tried to snag him told everyone we had moved in together by the proof of us shopping together. I had two children from a previous marriage, so when people started to talk about my mothering capabilities, it hurt. And that same person told the spouse of another co-worker that I was after her husband, prompting that wife to try to confront me in the office, but she was stopped at the front desk, and calmed down by my supervisor. We both left that office after four years, as too many jealous women undercut my capabilities, and too many jealous men held back my partner's career.
— Amy, Norfolk, Va.

I have lost marriages, relationships, jobs and opportunities as well as cause others to fall....all because I thought that a little tongue-wagging was cute. It isn't. It's character assassination pure and simple. What a fine attribute to have and even possibly pass on to your kids. Don't do it, not even a little bit.
— Shawn, Bluffton, S.C.

I don't think that I have ever gotten caught gossiping. I've learned now to always have a reason why or to cover up what I'm saying so that I won't ever get caught.
— Anonymous

Once my friend and I were talking about our other friend, Sara, on MySpace. The next day I had Sara change my layout, and she saw the e-mails. She didn't talk to us for days. ... I guess that taught us a lesson: Delete all nasty e-mails before you give people your password.
— Olivia, Littleton, Colo.

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