77 Spine-Chilling Moments That Got People Scared To The Core Of Their Souls
Watching a horror movie that makes your heart pound like a rocket is one thing. There’s an excitement and sense of thrill to it that many people enjoy.
But when things like that happen in real life, it’s a whole new story. You see, probably everyone has had an experience where their heart skipped a beat from just how scared they got. And some people felt the horror breathing right into their backs, making it the most spine-chilling moment they wish to forget. But it’s not that simple.
So, pull your seat closer, get a warm blanket and be ready to turn on the lights at any moment, cause this thread is not for the faint-hearted. “Have you ever been scared to the core of your soul?” asked one Redditor and stories started rolling in, each one more frightening than the previous one.
#1I was 11 maybe 12 years old. Dad worked late most nights so I was home alone per usual. Home however was a ranch house far out of town in a Florida pine forest. It was late and dark. The doors were all French style glass with no blinds or curtains. Outside those glass doors was only a hauntingly dark tree line, dimly lit by the moon. Leaving all the lights on and a TV gave some comfort but this meant it was much easier to see in than it was for me to see out..
On this night I had to get something out of the “back room”, this was our name for a garage that was absorbed into the house. The concrete floors and unfinished walls gave the room a cold air. As I’m searching for what I need, I glance up to see a large bleach-white figure standing outside the glass door. 6 feet tall with no head and no expression. Just white hair draped in front like a ring girl. This was the night I learned there was another option besides fight or flight. It was freeze. I stood frozen in fear, as if the blood in my body just drained. Unable to do anything until my brain recognized it was a horses a*s. The horse got out of its pen and was chilling under the carport, with its a*s against the glass door.
Image credits: LElige
#2Sucked farther and farther out to sea on my bodyboard after sunset while surfing triple overhead waves, just as the fogbank rolled in obscuring the coastline- and the direction I needed to swim to get home.
Took a couple hours in near dark open ocean to land a couple miles up the coast, guided solely by the faint, faraway string of a few streetlights and headlights that broke though the fog.
Every splash I heard behind me was *definitely* a great white shark. I'd panic paddle whenever there was a big splash behind me (again, I was in 20 foot seas. this happened *constantly*) until I could regain my calm center and try to drop my heart rate, the whole while thinking about how all that fast paddling I did probably just attracted a shark.
This was near San Francisco, lost at sea in great white breeding grounds while looking like a seal on a winter night, in horrendous conditions. It's not easy landing on a tiny strip of beach when twelve foot waves are dumping onto dry sand and the current is ripping at a decent pace... two miles away, I landed safely.
Slept like a baby, waking up screaming every two hours
Image credits: DAT_DROP
#3Went into my then 2 year old nephew's room to wake him up for the day. He was in his crib laying in a kind of weird posture, with his eyes wide open staring off at nothing. I figured he was awake already and thought "haha he looks dead..." to myself, and said "Good morning Matthew!" and his eyes didn't move to look at me. I said "Matthew?" and got closer to the crib and the way he looked was worse up close, just unfocused dead eyes looking at nothing, body limp. I shook him gently, then harder, saying "Matthew? Matthew?! MATTHEW?!" and when I yelled his name his eyes suddenly focused and he smiled at me and stretched like he often does when he first wakes up. Little f****r was asleep with his eyes open! It was only a few seconds but I swear my blood turned to ice, was never so scared in my goddamn life. No idea what caused it and he never did it again!
Image credits: notdead_luna
#4When I was in sixth grade, we were in choir one day when out of nowhere an announcement comes over the loudspeaker. “WE ARE GOING INTO LOCKDOWN, THIS IS NOT A DRILL, THERE IS AN ACTIVE SHOOTER IN THE BUILDING.” We all panicked, switched out the lights, and packed ourselves into the furthest corner of the room away from the door, all 110 of us. Some people were crying, others were praying. My hands were shaking and I was just whispering, “Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god.” At some point, someone came by trying the door and pounding on it, and I had never felt terror like that before and I haven’t felt it like that since. After the longest five minutes of my life, they got on the loudspeaker and said, “Thank you for your cooperation during the drill, students. You may resume class as normal.” We went from utter terror to relief to rage in a matter of seconds.
Image credits: JayzieDreamSquare
#5My ex-girlfriend had a psychotic breakdown. Went from perfectly normal to insane within a week. One night I took her to the hospital during one of her episodes and the doctor pumped her full of sedatives and said to bring her back in the morning as they had no beds. I didn’t feel comfortable about leaving the hospital but he assured me she’d be fine until the morning.
When I woke up the following morning I opened my eyes and saw she was lying on her pillow staring at me wide-eyed and grinning. It scared the hell out of me. As we got up to get ready to go back to the hospital she came at me with a knife and tried to stab me. I was able to get away from her and calm the situation long enough to call the police and paramedics. She later said that she had to [end] me.
I shudder to think what might’ve happened if I had stayed sleeping for longer that morning.
Image credits: PapaBike
#6We were at the beach and my son needed to use the washroom. I took him and my 2 year old daughter into the washroom, my son went into the stall to do his thing. Because his swim trunks were wet, he had trouble pulling them up. I went in the stall to help him for literally 15 seconds and when I came out my daughter was gone. I ran out of the washroom, looked to the beach, she wasn't in sight. I started screaming her name and i couldn't find her anywhere. Then someone said "I think I saw her at the playground".
I ran up a grassy hill and saw her on the slide. That minute she was missing was the scariest moment of my life.
Image credits: FkingButteredJorts
#7I was home alone when there was a knock on my front door. A man I’ve never seen before. I peeked through the blind and shook me head no and pointed to go away. He drove off a few minutes later. I’m standing in my kitchen when I see the car back in my driveway again and I see him walking around to my backyard. I immediately go upstairs to try to get a better view of where he is and what he’s doing. I went to go downstairs to grab a knife when I hear my front door open and he’s inside. I locked myself in my mom’s bathroom frantic, tried to open the window to jump out but the window got stuck. For a good 5 minutes I genuinely thought I was going to get murdered. I’ll never forget the feeling. Turned out to be a new rennovation man who was sent over for the first time that day and had a key.
Image credits: newlife1550
#8Then girlfriend [took her own life] while being on the phone with me. (To be exact - the part where she is non-responsive)
Image credits: ShadyWestHaze
#9Met a bear cub walking through the forest. It was 10 ft away from me, and was curious so was walking towards me. Couldn't see it's Mom. Just slowly backed away and kept walking backwards for probably half a mile.
Image credits: summertime_taco
#10When my mom called me in the middle of the night telling me to get to her house- that the police were there and something happened to my twin sister. My initial thought was that she got arrested or something. I lived down the street from my mom at the time and the feeling of absolute terror driving there was something I cannot explain. I kept saying she’s dead she’s dead I can feel it. It was a mix of absolute panic/shock/dread that I cannot put into words. I arrived at my moms house and saw a cop car with just their lights flashing and heard my mom scream from inside. I was right. That night replays in my head often and I can still feel that horrible feeling.
Image credits: Fine-Rock-9628
#11My healthy husband contracted sepsis out of the blue. In 24 hours he went from fine to multiple organ failure (all of them) and life support. He was given a 20% chance of survival. We had 2 very young kids at the time. I saw our future look completely different within hours.
On a bright note, after shed loads of antibiotics, a month in ICU and other drugs and a years recovery, he is absolutely fine, all organs recovered!
But the feeling of my world changing in a day has never left.
Never ignore signs of sepsis! Also God bless the NHS
#12Got lost when I was out skiing and almost dove off a cliff. Wound up hanging on the edge of a tree branch off like a 100 foot drop.
It was 25 years ago and I still can feel that almost hollowed out feeling in my chest. Almost like a vacuum.
Image credits: Pillens_burknerkorv
#13Tornado sirens blaring at 11:30 at night
Image credits: Friendly_Raptor
#14In grade 8 I had failed a French test and forgot to get my mom to sign it (parents divorced, mom was super strict); teachers wanted parents signatures so they knew students weren’t doing well. So I tried to forge my moms signature, handed it in and sat down. I watched as the French teacher picked it up, looked at it and set it off to the side. Halfway through the class a knock on the door, my mom had come to the schools because I forgot my house key. Before she left my French teacher asked to have a word with her in the hall, took my test out there and showed her. They talked about and were pleasant with each other, however before she left my mom gave me that glance you get when you know you severely f****d up. My teacher walked back in and started teaching as if nothing had happened. For the rest of the day I dreaded going home
Image credits: LoneWolf0890
#15Me and my friend went to America on holiday once and she decided to play the purge alarm while I was in the bathroom and I started freaking out thinking that there actually was a purge. I was really gullible at that time and would fall for nearly any prank.
Image credits: _ANDREA_06
#16I was sick at home lying in bed when I got the news that my cousin’s school was now in lock down do to a active shooter. I texted him and got no response for awhile. I’ve never felt more cold in my life and I can still feel the dread crawling up my spine if I think about the memory. He’s alive and ran away since he was outside but he had his phone taken away at the time but god damn I’ve never simultaneously had my heart pounding at the speed of sound while the world was moving slower than any slow mo camera will ever be
Image credits: Lowdog00
#17I actually had this happen to me yesterday. I was driving home through the mountains and drove into a freak May snowstorm. I was on a road with a canyon on my right side, mountain on my left, and my wipers weren't doing a damn thing to help me with the snow. I couldn't see a f*****g thing. My heart was beating so hard and I wanted to stop, but there were cars behind me and I couldn't so I had to keep just crawling forward. Finally got to a scenic overlook and was able to pull off. It was terrifying.
Image credits: JulesLovesYou1993
#18When I was new to teaching (HS), I was being observed by a principal. The class was being mostly good, but this one student was head down sleeping. I called his name, no response, so I went over to wake him up. I touched his arm and he just fell over, yellow foamy drool everywhere. He had overdosed, thank God the principal was there with their walkie to call for help while I did what first aid I knew. The student survived- but I was so scared because I wasn’t sure how to help, or if my helping was hurting. Its the feeling of being utterly powerless and incompetent when someone’s life is in your hands.
Image credits: rockstoneshellbone
#19When I was little I had sleep paralysis. I thought I was getting kidnapped by aliens until my wonderful mother convinced me it was actually demons trying to take possession of me. I had it pretty frequently and it was terrifying "waking up" unable to move, completely helpless, and convinced something evil is trying to destroy you. I was convinced at the time if I could just start praying out loud the demons would have to leave, but I couldn't speak often for what felt like minutes at a time. Nowadays sleep paralysis is a favorite topic on the internet, but I didn't understand what was actually happening to me until I took a course on the neuroscience of sleep in college.
#20When I was younger and living at home we had a family computer. I was online early one morning when I was watching this short video with music being played backwards. As I have only one eardrum I was close to the monitor and listening really hard when the girl from the exorcist jumped into the screen..... My soul left my body and I made a noise like I was dying.
Image credits: polarpup666
#21When I was 17 I was sleeping at my friends house her parents were away. I woke in the middle of the night freezing cold (Dec in South Africa!) and a figure was standing at the end of the bed . My friend and I were both sleeping in the double bed, initially I was literally frozen with fear, I thought I was seeing things. He was a tall man wearing white I just thought it was a burglar well at least a person, then the edges of him started to blur and become fuzzy and he became just like a blur of white shadow. Then in a flash he was there again clear as day this happened a few times then he vanished. During this I woke my friend saying there’s someone in the room, I think we starting saying the Lord’s Prayer - weird we’re not religious. Anyway felt like ages probably whole thing was minutes we jumped up out of bed ran out the house in our nighties in the middle of the night, left the house open ran / walked to her Aunties house about 3km away and then woke everyone up in the middle of the night and told them we’d seen a ghost. I don’t honestly know what they thought. When my friends family got back her gran said ‘oh the man with the dark hair” she had seen him often around the house! My dear friend died last year and I’m sad she’s not here to share this memory but it did change me as after that I knew ghost / spirits or something unexplainable existed as I had seen it with my own eyes.
#22When I was about seven years old, an older "friend" I had named Mikey locked me in my pitch black closet, and for some reason, my parents weren't around(which was highly unusual). I literally did everything I could to beat that door down, but I couldn't. I was screaming to the top of my lunges, and crying hysterically, and it must have went on at least five full minutes before he finally decided to let me out.
To this day, I'm a Claustrophobic, and I still blame it on that incident.
Image credits: MTVChallengeFan
#23Took mushrooms and wandered into jacks peak park in Monterey CA. Just as I'm starting to peak I hear a pissed off mountain lion in the distance. I was frozen in terror for about five minutes, eventually I said f**k it, if it's my day, it's my day, and continued down the trail.
About 15 minutes later I see something tan coming from behind a pine tree just off the trail. I nearly pissed, s**t and puked at the same time. I'm tripping really hard now and my feet are frozen to the ground as a doe and her fawn come out from behind the tree. We stood and looked at each other as tears rolled down my face from the beauty of the moment and the fact that I wasn't going to die.
#24I was 9, allowed to stay home alone in the evening for the first time. I read Edgar Allen Poe's *Tales of Mystery and Imagination* for the first time, and was so scared I ran over to the neighbor's house and asked him to check under all the beds for me.
My parents did not let me stay home alone again for another year.
#25Snowpocalypse last year. I'm from Texas and have lived here my entire life. I've seen snow maybe 10 times. My power kept going out buy I wasn't too worried. It would be off for 5 minutes then back for an hour but by that afternoon it turned off completely. My mom had been offering to come get me and my cats all morning but I didn't want any of us driving after I read about all of the wrecks that had already happened but once I'd been without power for a few hours and started shivering I realized I couldn't stay. I spent the next hour so scared for her driving but also for us if she couldn't get to my side of town. Luckily we made it back home safely and I will always be so incredibly grateful because my apartment lost power and water for 5 days. I had a full blown panic attack once we made it there safely. People made fun of us for "not being able to handle a little snow" but it was terrifying. Our houses are built to keep the heat out so it very quickly dropped to freezing inside for a lot of people. We had 6 adults and 10 pets staying with my folks by the second day because they are on the same grid as a hospital. We lost water but had prepared for that. So many people died just trying to keep warm any way that they could.
#26I was a life guard at a small water park and had been working there for about 2 years and never found the job scary or anything of the sort i had jumped in the pool many times to help kids that couldn’t swim and it was never scary to me i had the situation under control and knew that everything was fine i just had to jump in to save them. that was until one day on my first rotation of a shift i was watching my water and all the sudden i see this kid face down in the pool and normally i’ll just whistle at them and watch and they will jump up out of the water but this kid wasn’t moving at all and he wasn’t responding to a whistle from me and another kid in the pool even tapped him on the shoulder and he still didn’t move, immediately i did 2 long whistles (means someone’s is either unconscious in your pool or needs serious medical attention. this has only happened once while i was working but i wasn’t the one that did it) and jumped in the water right then is when the kid jumped up out of the water. i had legitimately thought a kid was possibly dead in my pool i have never been so scared in my entire life. i didn’t go back on duty at all that night and was shaking for the next 4 hours out of fear i guess that was still there. it turns out the kid had special needs and it almost felt like i couldn’t be angry about it but i still am. i never watched water again after that day and quit a week later i couldn’t do it anymore anytime i started i would just get so scared and that’s a feeling that still sticks with me 4 years after the fact
#27I was home alone (off sick from school), and a paedophile hacked my computer. He had access to my webcam (which I didn't know at the time), and said he could see me. Described everything around me. I thought he was in my backyard, panicked and locked all the doors while crying and shaking. I called my dad and he came home straight away. It was a whole ordeal and the police did an investigation. Turns out he was a known paedophile in the US (not the country I live in). Nothing they could do.
To this day I cover all webcams on laptops/PC's as soon as I own them. All doors are locked when I'm home alone and all windows have curtains on them you can't really see through.
Yes, I've had therapy. But some paranoia just sticks.
#28When I was about 10-11 years old, my best friend (still best friends) and I walked across our neighborhood about twenty minutes or so away to go visit the large pond nearby. We took bread to feed the ducks. At some point a white pickup truck pulled up and remained parked by the pond for quite some time. There was a man inside by himself that remained watching us.
I knew something was wrong and pointed it out to my friend. She told me not to worry and said he might be waiting on someone. We tried moving to the other side of the pond, to which he slowly followed us in his truck. We continued to play but both became increasingly nervous, and eventually decided after him following us a few times and continuing to watch us that we needed to make a game plan to get home. We both agreed walking back to her house was not an option. Obviously this was at a time children did not have cell phones, so that was off the table.
We agreed to make a run for it when the timing was right. His truck was right in front of where we’d need to get to the nearest house. The man began to roll down his window to speak to us so we jolted and took off running as fast as we can. He could definitely sense we were on edge I’m sure. He followed us and stopped the truck as we banged on a stranger’s door. He was full on in the middle of the road watching us. Once a man answered he sped away. At that point we were both sobbing hysterically. Luckily this was a father himself and was incredibly kind to us. We waited on the front porch while he called my father and explained the situation. My dad flew over and picked us up in what I’d like to call record time lmao. Both he and my dad called the police.
Come to find out a man in a white truck had been reported in the area for several weeks trying to pick up young girls. They put out a neighborhood watch for months in my neighborhood. I never saw him again but hope he was caught. So thankful for that random dad that helped us and took us seriously! I cannot imagine what would have happened had he not answered or we had tried to walk back on our own.
#29I pissed off my father. I want to preface, he was a great father. I was supposed to be getting ready for school the next day, and I was being a brat. No two ways about it, I was being a little sh*thead brat. As my mother was standing at the bottom of the stairs to my converted attic bedroom, I threw my school pants down the stairs at her, not to her, and hit her in the face with them. My mother took a step back and looked to the living room where my father was sitting in his recliner and just gave him a glance. My father sat up, walked over to the bottom of the stairs and glared up at me. I had made halfway down the stairs, when he came around the corner to glare at me. In my intimate wisdom (sarcasm), I looked at the glare he gave me and knew I done f****d up, turned around and tried to run back up the remaining stairs and into my room thinking it was my sanctuary. How very wrong I was. Before I even covered two steps he was already halfway up and grabbed me by my ankles. He dragged me down the stairs, out to the living room, flipped me over, grabbed the scruff of my shirt and picked me up, slamming me into the wall. He got in my face and said, “if you ever do that again, I promise you will regret it, and I will be in jail.” He didn’t yell, but used that low, angry dad voice. From that moment on, I had a fear instilled into the very core of my soul of that moment. God rest my pops. I miss him. I have a tattoo of stairs on my arm to remind me of that night.
#30I was in a prison in an African country with a septic wound in my back and malaria made me see things
Image credits: rowenaravenclaw0
#31I was almost murdered. It's a long story but I'll try to paraphrase it.
When I was a senior in high school a girl in my neighborhood went missing and about a month later was found dead. During that time her adoptive father was contacting people left and right. Apparently he had his suspicions about my ex boyfriend of 3 years who dated the missing girl in middle school. Adoptive father comes to my house to talk to me about ex and never really asked me anything about him but he talked about himself the whole time and how he was in a white supremacy gang and [eliminate] 12 people a year. After he left my house he kept trying to get me to meet with him alone without my mom present to talk to me more about my ex because he felt like I was leaving stuff out in front of my mom. I told him no, I wasn't comfortable and he just kept insisting. It got to the point where I had to have security walk me to and from my car at work and school. Adoptive father ends up getting arrested on unrelated charges and the detectives come and talk to me to figure out what he said to me etc. They told me to stay away from him and that he is dangerous. They pulled my mom away to speak privately to her and I didn't find out til I was in college that they told her that they think he murdered the girl and that he was planning on murdering me and blaming it on my ex that he went crazy and started murdering all his ex girlfriends.
It's been 7 years since this happened and the adoptive father was just convicted of murdering his daughter in February. But, I'm always terrified that one of his "brothers" are watching me since I testified against him.
Image credits: lexyann03
#32I was about to fall asleep in my bedroom (I was 16 at the time so it's a while ago). Suddenly my dad calls me, which is weird considering it was 2 in the morning and my dad never calls me because we're literally in the same house. My dad tells me to come downstairs because he doesn't feel very well, so I do. My dad is rarely sick so I started worrying. When I came downstairs, he was drenched in sweat and held a hand clutching to his heart, making weird noises in pain. When I sat down beside him, he told me he called an ambulance. Then he went quiet, and around half a minute later he just said "Can you hold my hand"
It terrified me because it felt like he was making sure to say goodbye in case he died. It took longer than it should've for the ambulance to arrive, and my dads condition only got worse and worse. When they finally arrived, they were all very calm, but suddenly there was a change. They did an EKG on the spot and suddenly started hurrying around with bags of liquid and needles and monitors around my living room, and they even told me to hold stuff and carry things for them. I tried to keep my composure, but I was shaking in terror. I overheard them saying that he was having a heart attack.
They asked me to call my mom (I lived alone with my dad at the time), so I tried but she didn't pick up. I told them she didn't pick up and they basically said "Okay, take care of yourself" and left with my dad.
My dad was admitted to the hospital and ended up surviving the heart attack with minor complications, but I was left alone at home for 5 days straight. I was 16 ffs, and no one did the slightest effort to make sure that I was alright. I didn't sleep, I didn't eat. I just waited for my dad to come home. My dad is my best friend, he's the only one I have, and I catch myself going to check on him during the night just to make sure he's alive. I'm terrified every day.
Image credits: y0ghurtl0ver
#33When I had a psychotic break and I left the hospital I was afraid of f*****g everything. I couldn’t leave the house without feeling like someone was about to murder or kidnap me. I’ve never experienced such fear and paranoia to that level before. Which is saying a lot bc I suffer from paranoid delusions.
Image credits: Its0hs0qui3t
#34It’s a strange one, because I had no actual, logical, reason to feel scared, yet I was terrified.
I worked in a shop a few years ago and was tidying up at the front of the store near the windows and the entrance. I saw a man walk in, but I only saw his back when he came into the store. He had long hair and wore a leather jacket or leather trousers or maybe both, can’t remember. I thought nothing of it at the time. A few minutes later the same man was walking back towards the doors and I looked at him casually. He was looking at me too so we ended up making eye contact. Instant goosebumps, shivers. Whatever vibes he was giving off it scared the sh*t out of me to the point that I couldn’t move or even take my eyes off him. He slowly walked towards the doors while maintaining an eye contact. When he walked past me, he had this smirk on his face that was just purely evil. He proceeded to walk out of the store and turned right and for a few moments he was covered by a huge sign in our window. Every cell in my body screamed at me to go. Run. Even though he was actually leaving clearly, I still felt the need to get as far away from him as possible. But at the same time I felt like I didn’t want to lose him out of my sight until I knew for sure he was gone. As he came back into view he was still looking at me. When he finally walked past our window I almost cried from relief that he was gone. He never said a word. Never even approached me. All he did was looking at me and it scared me more than anyone ever. I never saw him again and I hope I never will.
Image credits: OkSandwich3276
#35My 3 year old woke up, opened the door, and walked out of our apartment at 10:00 pm while we were asleep. We didn’t realize he was gone until an hour later, couldn’t find him anywhere close by. I was so terrified. I’ll never forget. I was screaming and crying while on the phone with 911.
#36I'm pretty sure these two old dudes were going to kidnap me once when I was 16. When I tell this story, people think I'm overreacting to some typical "harmless" creeps who weren't seriously going to do anything to me. But you would have just had to see their body language and hear this man's voice for yourself to get it. Like most women, I have heard my fair share of creepy comments from the usual men that cat call women in parking lots and stuff. This was very different. I was browsing cds alone in a store. The cd section was completely empty, aside from me. While I was looking, suddenly these two middle aged men materialized out of nowhere. They had me corned up, standing so close they were almost touching me. I looked up into the face of the one on my left, and he just had this completely blank face. With no inflection in his voice, he said, "Hey gorgeous, what are you doing tonight?" I remember being surprised by how normal he looked, because he looked like he could have been one of my friends' dad's or someone my dad knows. Very typical looking man in his mid to late 50s with completely gray hair and glasses, and a buttoned up long sleeved shirt tucked into his jeans. He looked clean and well kept. But he was giving off major serial killer vibes. His cold, expressionless face, his monotone voice... I just knew he wanted to do some Ted Bundy stuff to me. I didn't look at his friend's face, but I remember that he had a huge beer gut. I didn't reply, I just quickly darted between him and his fat friend and ran away.
Image credits: Traditional_Self_658
#37My son was almost hit by a truck on Christmas morning after he got his first bicycle. We were all so excited and forgot to tell him about the brakes. He ended up ok and after he got to the side of the road I squeezed him and both of our hearts were beating like rabbits
Image credits: shabangdoozie
#38Regularly drove by an old timber house that served as the town museum. One time there was a mannequin in one of the windows dressed in old timely clothes. The split second I saw it I felt a fear I never felt before or since.
It’s hard to explain best way to explain it was that it was painful even. Shook me completely left me cold and I felt physical pain. Then the next second I realised it was a mannequin and it was gone.
I have hunted for that sort of fear and rush since then but never found it.
Image credits: felixkatz
#39I was driving early in the morning one summers day on a rural highway and rolled up to an overturned car. It was one of those accidents that made you grateful that you weren’t there when it actually happened — rollover cage severely dented, front windshield cracked, several windows gone, and rear door was open. Then I did a double take. The car was still on, the front window wipers were skating over the shattered glass, and there was a man in a fetal position 5 feet away in the grass.
I pulled the f**k over immediately and called EMS. I ran over to the guy whose head was cracked like a porcelain doll. He didn’t know the date, his name, and at several points tried to get up before his legs gave out.
#40Three years ago, my son was on his bike and he was on the other side of the street from where I was. He decided to avoid running into a car parked between the sidewalk and the driveway he was coming up to. Barely a second later, another car was zooming towards him down the street. I screamed so loud, but the car saw him moving down the other drive way and saw it slowing down. My son never even finished going down the other driveway and waited for the car to pass by him before proceeding. We were literally just 4 house away from our house. I had never screamed or felt so scared in my life. I thought I was about to see my son get hit head on.
#41There are lots of trees and bushes near my home. One day I was doing some work a little bit away from my house when I heard buzzing near me I looked and saw a couple of wasps flying around, I didn't pay much attention to them. After sometime there were like 15 to 20 of them around me and they started attacking. I ran and they chased. I got stung eight times before they stopped chasing. One of the most horrifying experiences of my life.
#42The birth of my son. Wife started having contractions, but wanted to keep waiting because she is in the medical field and didn't want to be that woman that gets sent home for false labor pains. Gets to the point where you are supposed to go in and she's still arguing with me. But then the pain gets so much my Wife, who has a high pain tolerance, almost collapses. And now the contractions are starting to run into each other. I put my foot down and say, "We are going NOW." I grab the prepared bag and my Wife understands I'm not taking no for an answer. We drive to the hospital.
The contractions went back to a normal pattern and we're in the check in. Everything is looking good, but the nurse notes the baby's heart beat is a little low. We get checked into the room. After we're all in the room and things are progressing, the door bursts open and about a dozen doctors and nurses fly into the room. They have my Wife move into different positions, as I notice the lead doctor is worried about the baby's heartbeat. Lead doctor says, "We're going to the operating room now, where's the father?" I pipe up that I'm the father. "Ok, come with us and KEEP UP." The team then grabs the bed and RUNS to the OR, with me trailing.
As we're running one of the medical people is telling me they're going to do a cesarean section, and once they get setup they'll come and get me to scrub in. We get to the OR and have me wait outside, across the hall. Now begins the scariest half hour of my life. They don't come get me. Once and a while I see people running in or out. My mind is racing. What if we lose the baby? What if I lose my Wife? What if I lose them BOTH?? It was only a half hour, but it was a brutal half hour.
But this story has a happy ending. Eventually they come out and tell me my Son has been born and he and my Wife are doing good. They bring out my Son and I hold him in my hands for the first time, and I feel a joy I cannot describe.
A couple of weeks later, in the follow up appointment, my Wife's doctor explains we very nearly lost them both. If I had been 10 minutes later, things could have been bad. But we're all happy and healthy now. All is well that ends well. But that half hour was easily the scariest moments of my life.
#43I’ll preface this by saying those actually in the building who were hurt and first responders will have trauma I can’t even imagine and I know this doesn’t compare but: I was downtown the day of the OKC bombing, about 4 blocks away. I was going to the Civic Center on a class field trip. The explosion happened and it was like an earthquake. I thought something like a gas explosion; all the glass on one side of the street blew out and luckily away from me and my friends. The teachers were screaming at us to get back on the buses.
On our way out, we couldn’t move very fast so my entire class was treated to the chaos of bloody and broken people, cars on fire, and general wreckage. I can’t even remember any one specific horrific thing, it just all blends together. I remember being afraid we would never get out and my dad would never find me.
#44I live in Mexico and it's really safe where I live. However, one day me and my friends went on a work road trip that took us through one of the most dangerous places in the entire country.
All went well and just as we were heading back, we decided to buy some beer for the road. It was getting dark and we were partying our way back, when suddenly a black SUV cut us off in the middle of the highway and six armed men get out pointing automatic rifles at us yelling.
Couldn’t wrap my head around it and all I could think was, "Oh man, this is it; goodbye family and friends, they are never gonna find our bodies now". They took us to this old half-destroyed Hacienda looking building in the middle of some ranch.
Told us the reason that they stopped us was because we were speeding through their town and almost ran over a woman and a child who turned out to be family of them.
Anyways, we were on our knees with a ditch in front of us, absolutely the most mind bending, soul crushing, all-hope-lost moment, staring at death right in the face. Worst 3 minutes of my life. Suddenly one of the guys recognizes one of my friends. He says "Hey aren't you Juan who works for this company?" My friend trembles a yes. "Do you still work for Jose?" Another yes. So the guy calls Jose and they exchange a few words. He said "we owed him a favor... so you're free to go"
And just like that, they let us go because of my friend. Not before before beating the c**p out of him, since he was the one driving. They also stripped him of his clothes and had to ride back butt naked. We drove back very carefully this time and with a very awkward silence, made it home safely. We only talked about what had happened a year or so later.
TLDR; six armed men pulled us over in the middle of the road at night and held us at gunpoint
#45When I was about 12 years old a bat got in my bedroom. I heard scratching coming from between the head of my bed and the wall. I looked in the crack and saw a small bat on the floor. I grabbed my BB gun and prepared to shoot it while standing on the bed. I was so scared that my knees went wobbly (only time in my life) and that combined with the softness of the bed made aiming very difficult. I put my first shot right though it and followed it up with a second shot. After a long wait I went to remove it. It turned out I put 2 shots right through the electrical plug for my bedside light (there was no bat). The scratching sound that I originally heard was the wind blowing a tree limb against the outside of my bedroom wall.
#46Long story short, I had a family member who suffered a psychotic break and threatened to kill certain family members and make others watch as well as kill my mother, kidnap my sister and me and raise us as his own. From the time that he was released from the mental hospital until the day that he died I was terrified. Used my phone to watch behind me while I walked home from school and never answered the door while I was home alone.
#47Iraq a year ago.
I was getting ready for the day ahead of me, putting on my uniform, shaving, etc.
All of the sudden, the base alarm went off with a creepy computerized voice that says “INCOMING! INCOMING! INCOMING!” Followed by a loud alarm. I immediately heard explosions, and they were getting louder and louder. I run outside to the bunker. Curiosity got the best of me so I stopped at the entrance and looked around. I could see the impact explosions getting closer, and closer, and closer. I realized that the enemy was “walking in” the rockets they shot. The last one landed about 50 yards from where I was standing, but at the time I didn’t know if there were going to be more.
I about s**t my pants that day, and that was within the first month of the deployment. Went to work after we got base accountability about an hour later like nothing happened. It was a long 9 months.
#48Belarus KGB (yes, they are still called the KGB) breaking down our apartment door in Minsk at 2 am post-2020 presidential election. Balaclavas and guns pointed. Terrifying then after the few hours of interrogation, numbness.
#49I do outreach to the homeless. One night, I went into a parking garage to talk to some people I saw - give them some care packages/referrals for housing. I felt the energy change soooo fast - like this darkness and coldness. I turned around and walked out, but this lady came up to this fencing around the parking structure, and spoke in this guttural croak, "Staaayyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!". I *felt* something her eyes (some of you might know what it is like to **feel** something you see). And whatever it was, was looking out from within her eyes, the same way her physical form was looking at me behind the fence.
I have seen some scary and frightening stuff doing outreach for the past many years - but nothing like that.
#50First time I tried shrooms, I had a whole eighth on me, I took the first gram and didn’t feel anything fatter an hour or so, decided to take the rest, probably one of the biggest mistakes in my life. What started feeling like a basic acid like trip quickly turned into the biggest mental break down I ever had. Best thing too, I was alone in my apartment, hyperventilating in my blanket because it was about 4-5 am, and I didn’t want my neighbors hearing me through the walls of our building, which were like paper thin. Even though it was only October, and my appointment was probably around 60-65 degrees, I felt like I had to have all my clothes on and my blanket wrapped around me as much as possible, and was still shivering cold as if I was naked out in the middle of the winter. I was mainly freaking out because I had to go to work later on in the day but was able to sober up by then, still was dealing with the “after glow” affects. For anyone who don’t know what that is, they’re the aftermath feels you get in your body for the next few days after the trip.
#51Sat down to eat dinner with my grandfather, he was saying he had some chest pains, he went outside and we both sat on the chairs in the back patio. He leaned over and clutched his chest.
I swear time want to so slowly, nothing else mattered and I was there just talking to him and he was in agony, told me not to grab the phone or anything. It passed and we went inside to finish dinner, made him drink a s**t ton of water cause I think he was dehydrated.
He’s still here, but I know there’ll be a day and I’m trying to focus myself on being there during his final moments and know it’s soon.
#52Last year, the moment we were told my wife had breast cancer. The 2 weeks we didn't know how bad it was or what the outcome would be. I've never been so scared in my life.
#53My twin girls were born prematurely at 28 weeks and were in nicu. One of them contracted e coli somehow and they had to test every single inch of the nicu to see how it was contracted. Doctor said to prepare for the worse because she wasn't doing well. Worst day of my life. After 3 days she was able to fight it. She is now 4 years old and perfect and strong.
#54I was visiting Australia with family. We were staying along the gold coast and decided to go for a swim. I was out maybe 50 feet from the shore paddling along on a paddle board. A giant dorsal fin emerged out of the water about 4 feet in front of me, circling me. I looked down and could only make out a large black shape below. Turned out it was just a dolphin but damn did I almost s**t myself.
#55Flipped a car over going about 80 mph on the highway. It’s a scary feeling having the car slowly lose contact with all 4 tires on the road and go upside down. Crazy nothing serious happened to any of us
#56I went to go stargazing with a friend at a nearby field in Pennsylvania, near Collegeville, around 1995-1997 ~~1998.~~ We were laying down in the tall grass and looking up at the stars and we heard a rustle in the trees nearby...and then then the nose of a gun poked out of the bushes maybe 15 feet away, pointed in our direction. It was a hunter who thought we were deer, because he couldn't see us, but he heard & saw the movement of the grass. We knew if we moved, invisible (as humans) in the tall grass, we would be shot. We even saw a deer earlier, as he probably did.
I felt pure terror in that moment and without even realizing I was doing it, I found myself raising my hand slowly while singing "You are my sunshine"; I just wanted to be as NOT DEER as possible. I kept singing until I was standing up and the gun retreated and I heard twigs snapping as the hunter walked away. I honestly don't remember what happened after that, adrenaline and all, but I assume we must have walked back soon after. I have no idea why that song came to mind, as I was on total auto-pilot survival mode.
Probably the bravest thing I have ever done and i'm glad it was just a hunter hoping to bag a deer. I'm glad I was able to convince him I was not a deer.
EDIT: this was along the Perkiomen Trail near Ursinus College; and it wasn't hunting season so we were not expecting to need precautions.
Image credits: 9-year-cicada
#57many years ago I was laying in bed trying to go to sleep. All of a sudden I saw this creature standing in my window. It was black and it looked burnt. From the knee down was thick black straight hair. It had hooves like a goat. It had bat like wings and yellow eyes. It tilted it's head at me and made a gesture with it's fingers. I jumped out of bed and grabbed the baseball bat and ran outside ti kill waht ever it was. My heart was pounding so hard my chest actually hurt and I could see my chest moving with every heart beat this creature slowly moved back in to the trees and disappeared. My late german grandmother also saw the same creature around 15 years earlier.
#58My dad and I gotten into a huge fight, we were screaming, it was physical, and genuinely one of the most traumatic things I’ve experienced.
I remember, I was facing him across the kitchen counter. My entire body was shaking, but my legs were shaking so bad I could barely walk. I remember he screamed “Your mother killed your sister.” (She didn’t. My sister died of an OD.) As soon as he said that, I saw him glance at the knives. After that, I blacked out and don’t remember a thing.
I ran out of the house. I ran faster than my legs could take me.
#59Hit a mountain on a submarine at 250 feet and 6 knots.
Hit it a second time with the rudder and emergency blew to the surface.
Port side ballast tanks check valves froze shut until I hit them with a rubber mallet.
My fifth day at sea.
Image credits: I_Am_Penguini
#60I'm born and raised in South Florida. No mountains. Not even really "hills". My husband and I bought an RV and took a trip to the top of Georgia to an RV park at the peak of the mountains. We started going up the actual side of the mountain and it felt (and looked like) we were going almost straight up. I started feeling panicky. The road was RIDICULOUSLY narrow, especially in our massive bus like rv so when i looked out the window I could see all the way down the mountain and zero road between it and me. I had a full blown panick attack. Started bawling. Nothing we could do but keep going forward. And for some reason they don't believe in guard rails up there. I actually thought that's how i was going to die. Tumbling down some mountain in a huge tin can. My dog was sleeping between us on a dog bed and I felt terrible that she was going to die with us. I wanted my mom. I'm not a dramatic person in general. I'm also not one to cry or get panicked about things. But I was sure i was dying right then. Made it to the top, still couldn't open my eyes until we actually pulled into our spot 20 minutes later. Had an absolute blast going over bridges and hiking to waterfalls. Even sitting on the "edges" of the mountains. But the entire time I felt panicky about having to go back down the mountain. Left at 4 am so i didn't have to look. But c'mon Georgia.... Invest in some guard rails?
#61Ok I'll tell it. It was in April of this year, and you can guess by my nik that I'm Ukrainian so I was in my backyard talking with my friend when suddenly half of the sky turned red (it was at night) and the only thing that I managed to do is say "Holly s**t !" and start counting. After 29 seconds I heard explosion after simple calculation turned out that our AA shooted dawn russian missile 10 kilometers away from me, but s**t that few minutes was f*****g scary !
#62I went into psychosis in the car on a family road trip. we had to stop at a stress center (mental hospital) halfway for me to be evaluated. unfortunately, they had no beds and it was labor day so they couldn’t admit me, but they sat me down with my parents and doctor. I remember hallucinating and seeing angels in the hallway and on the walls. I looked at a fire alarm box thing on the wall for 20 minutes just trying to figure out if I was alive, or if I was just imagining myself.
My mother is not the best. So after all of this, she decided we still needed to go on the road trip. She sat in the back of the car with me while my dad drove, and I remember drinking a McDonald’s smoothie (the best damn smoothie, may I add) and still feeling like I wasn’t real.
The whole trip I was completely out of it. I remember totally feeling like I was in outer space. Like genuinely, I did not believe I was on earth or human.
I’m better now, but those were the scariest moments of my life
Image credits: kyrweb
#63Once when I was a teenager, a group of us were hanging out on top of the roof of a friend's apartment building. Out of nowhere, an angry man came up, pointed a gun at us, and started yelling at us to shut up. Turned out it was my friend's upstairs neighbor. I'm not sure if he thought we were intruders or if he was just angry that we were making noise, but either way, we're lucky that none of us got shot that night. He was just there for a minute or so, but it was terrifying.
#64When my daughter was 4 she was in an accident that broke both of her legs. A wind storm blew over a wobbly equipment shed at a sports arena that she was sitting next to to avoid the rain.
When the wind picked up I was distracted by banners being ripped off fences when I heard the equipment shed fall over. I heard someone yell a kid was under and I started panicking looking for her. It took two of us to lift the shed and there she was. Her legs were absolutely f****d and it looked like she was bleeding from her mouth (turned out to be candy). I have never felt that level of fear in my life.
I panicked and to this day I wish I had held my composure. I’m so f*****g lucky that she’s alright (for the most part) but that day is engrained in my psyche as the scariest day of my life.
#65When my daughter was still a brand new baby, her dad woke me up one morning, with this awful look on his face and said "somethings wrong" honestly, I thought she was dead, it was the most terrified I have ever been. Turns out our pet bunny had died. I've never really forgive myself that my first thought when I heard macaroni was dead, was an absolute overwhelming wave of relief.....
#66I was at Home Depot and I looked down for 30 seconds and my family was gone. I was like 7 and my heart stopped, I thought they were gone forever
#67around 2 years ago i was visiting my parents home for Christmas. I went to take a p**s when i heard i creaking noise in the bath. I didn't really notice it at first but when i walked past the bathroom i saw a bald, grey fully naked man standing in the bath looking down at his feet. I instantly shut the door and screamed for somebody to come upstairs. My brother rushed up the stairs and we went in the bathroom but there wasn't anyone there. I was a little drunk at the time so i could have just imagined it but it still scares the s**t out of me to this day.
#68Cleaning out an abandoned meat packing two-story celler that had been used as a brothel. Me and my coworker were opening this steel door that was bolted shut. It apparently led to the old boiler room. When we peeled it open, this high pitched shrieking, screeching noise started coming toward us in the dark like someone was dragging a steel chair on concrete. My blood turned to absolute ICE in my veins. I've faced down guns before and had my share of awful experiences, but the TERROR that grabbed my brain was unreal. We both turned and bolted up those stairs so fast there was probably smoke coming off our shoes.
No idea what made the noise, but we didn't go back downstairs.
#69Got into a head on collision when a dude swerved into my lane. When I came to I saw smoke coming from the engine and my driver side door was smashed in so I couldn’t open it. Was so scared I couldn’t think straight to try another door so I pulled myself out of the broken window in my drivers side door. Terrifying to think you are trapped in a burning car.
#70There's two. At my best friend's house, shortly after she had her first kiddo, we were hanging out in her room. I left to go to the bathroom, and saw a dark shadow move across the hallway from the living to my niece's room. My best friend was in her room behind me, so I knew it wasn't her. I grabbed the first thing I could find, which was a cup or a vase, and screamed my best friend's name that there was someone in her kid's room. By the time I got there-- not even five seconds-- my niece was awake and alone, but her bedroom window was wide open. Cops searched the house, never found the person. Was probably a robber, but still.
Second was when my partner and I were driving to dinner, pulled off the highway and saw five cars pulled to the side of the off-ramp. We stopped because I saw someone waving their arms, and then I noticed a car down the embankment. A couple dudes were looking through the passenger windows, there was smoke coming from under the hood, and there was a woman absolutely screaming bloody murder, "She's burning, she's burning, oh my god, she's gonna burn to death." Turned out there was still someone trapped in the front seat, and no one was able to get her door open. Between me, my partner and another man, we got her back window broken, but by the time I climbed into the backseat, and they got the passenger door open, there was fire pouring through her dashboard and up along her windshield, coming through the floor. And her foot had gone through the floor and was stuck at an angle that made it impossible to pull her free. So I had to lean into the front seat to grab her leg and maneuver her foot free while we were seconds away from the car going up in flames and killing us all. We managed-- the sole of her foot and my hands got pretty badly burned, and her leg was broken severely, but we got her out and over the road to the other side of the embankment. We had barely cleared the asphalt when her car exploded.
#71My 3 year old being diagnosed with leukemia. She had been sick for months and the doctors kept blaming it on reactions to getting some vaccines, then “anemia”, then a UTI, etc. My mom instinct one day told me if I didn’t take her to the doctor again she would die. She had labs drawn and her hemoglobin was 2.3 (that is almost no blood in your body!). I knew something was way off for months but knew it was cancer when her pediatricians’ office called and usually a nurse gives simple lab results over the phone and it was a physician telling me she needed to go to the hospital immediately and to pack bags to be there for awhile and that she had a room in the ICU ready for her. The most devastating and terrifying day of my life by far. My ex husband/her father had just left for rehab the day before and I received all of this info and had to process it super quickly on my own. I had to smile and comfort her while they poked and prodded her repeatedly when all I wanted to do was break down. She went through chemo and all that comes along with it for 2 1/2 years and she finished treatment on Halloween last year. I feel so blessed our story has a happy ending and that she got to ring that bell, but that moment felt like I was living in an actual nightmare. I was so scared that I was numb, you truly never expect something like that to happen to your baby. It’s amazing the cure rate for her type of leukemia (Pre B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia) is now 97% curable. Prayers and good vibes to all of you who’ve shared experiences of trauma or terrible things that have happened.
#72I have a number of sleep disorders but this one night really shook me to my core. I was sleeping on my side facing the wall when I suddenly woke and I had a feeling of complete terror and dread washing over me. I know it was just in my mind but my brain was telling something is standing behind me right next to my bed and it’s staring at me. I shut my eyes and just told myself that it was just a dream and that it’s going to be ok. I have no memory of anything after that I just remember waking up the next morning and thinking back on what happened. Thinking about it doesn’t scare me anymore but I remember at that moment in time I was absolute scared for my life and I thought I was going to die. Just apart of my sleep disorders I guess.
#73Went to meet a girl at her place or so I thought. Let’s just say it was a bad neighborhood. I knock on the door. Some shirtless tatted gangbanger looking dude emerges all angry threatening me. It went from like 0 to 100. It was dark plus a screen door but I could see he was pointing something. I froze for a few secs that felt forever. I could hear the door opening as I walked away. I am not that religious but just remember thinking ‘god please don’t let me get shot or get jumped can’t go out like this’. To this date don’t know what that was about. Either Wrong place wrong time. Someone high, or some crazy ex she didn’t tell me about
#74I've been to Afghanistan, Iraq and a lot of other scary places. My one and only flat out panic attack? An Ikea store in Los Angeles. I could not breathe and absolutely had to get out of there. My wife still gives me c**p to this day. And for those wondering, this was not a reaction to any of the scary places. This was well before I went to any of those places and at a time when I had very little to stress about.
#75When my daughter wandered off on a crowded beach is the scariest I have ever been.
#76years ago when I still lived at my parents house, I was sleeping on the couch in the unfinished basement with my girlfriend at the time. I woke up to her shaking me awake with absolute panic in her voice whispering that there was a very tall man across the basement watching us. Hearing that made my blood run cold so i slowly peeked over the back of the couch and sure enough, I could just barely make out the shape of an EXTREMELY tall man facing us in the darkness. He was so tall that his head was close to the ceiling. I whispered to my girlfriend at the time that I was going to jump up and turn the light on which had a string that you needed to pull to turn it on, and right when I did that she needed to use the light to run to the stairs and get out of the basement. So after a second of psyching myself up for whatever came next, I counted to 3 and jumped off the couch and turned the light on.
I finally got a proper look at the guy. It was my dads f*****g scuba suit that he hung from the rafters to let it dry. My hands were shaking for a half hour after that but we both got a good laugh out of it….eventually.