30 People Shared Shockingly Terrifying Things They’ve Experienced That Still Keep Them Up At Night
We’re all drawn to sharing scary stories, especially when we’re kids huddled around a campfire or friends gathered at a sleepover. All you need is a flashlight illuminating your face, commitment to using character voices, and you can tell the most frightening story a child has ever heard. Even adults love ingesting their fair share of horror films and novels. But the thing about scary stories is that they’re way more terrifying when they’re true. It’s all fun and games until we realize that these disturbing and spine-chilling tales could actually happen to us too…
But if you’re in the mood to be freaked out, you’re in for a treat! Because, recently, Reddit users have been opening up about the scariest moments in their lives, and we’ve gathered some of the most upsetting and haunting stories down below. I’ll warn you right now, pandas, some of these stories are a lot to take in, so if horror movies keep you from sleeping at night, this might not be the best list for you. But if you're hungry for some horrifying tales, be sure to upvote all of the accounts you find most frightening. Then, if you’re interested in reading even more unsettling stories from Bored Panda, check out this creepy article next!
It was the night that I (17f) was escaping to Europe from Turkey (at the time I was 15). I wouldn't call it a moment because it was a whole night. A few things happened so I'm gonna write them down here.
- The first one was actually in daylight. The driver was taking the group that I am escaping with to the border. And out of 5 people, at least 3 of them were wanted by the police (we weren't criminals, don't worry. Government is led by a dictator so anything you do that they don't like is a crime.) So as you can guess, we weren't supposed to get pulled aside by the police to check IDs. But there was a control thing on the highway and they were almost gonna stop us. We got lucky and the police pulled the truck in front of us and we were let through. I was so scared that I hold my mom's hand and didn't let go until we passed them. After I let go, her hand was white as paper.
- The second one is when we were out of the car and running to the border with two smugglers leading us. They were stopping us to lie on the ground every 30 seconds just in case there are soldiers. But one time they stopped us and we lay on the ground for almost 30 minutes. The smugglers were gone and all we can see was the starry sky. We didn't move, breathe when necessary, and didn't say a thing for 30 minutes. It was quite scary.
- And this one happened in Greece. We were in Greece for about 10 minutes before the soldiers found us. The smugglers told us to leave our bags on the ground and put our hands up if we ever see a Greek soldier. I am not an idiot but after some emotional breakdown on the way there and seeing the soldiers with guns. I started crying and made up all those weird scenarios where they execute us by a firing squad lmao. I know where it doesn't sound like a really scary thing but it is quite hard to explain the atmosphere. You have to live it to understand it.
- The next one is not related to that night. I am not gonna say which country but it was after coming to Europe. When you immigrate to a country, they put you in a tent where you stay for 7 days to one month. And there are all kinds of people in those tents. It is not a normal tent. It's a place of about 200 square meters full of bunks. You stay with 100 people and if you get raped, you can't prove it bc there are no cameras and no one cares. And I was almost gonna get raped at least 5-6 times. Grown-up men are just looking for a chance to come near you and talk to you, looking for a time when you are alone. This one time I was carrying some stuff for my mother so I was a bit left behind. Three men just surrounded me and start asking my name, and my phone number, and at the same time, they were coming close to me, trying to touch my body and so on. When almost one of them grabbed my arm my guy friend run to us calling to me. And I couldn't sleep for the next 3 days we were there because I was in the same tent as those men.
I am sorry I wrote too long. I am just afraid of a lot of stuff. Also apologies for the possible grammar mistakes and vocabulary.
I walked in on my dad, looking like he was dead (eyes open, but lifeless) He was suffering a full cardiac arrest. I called 911 and gave him chest compressions for 10 minutes until EMTs arrived. When they got there they told me his heart and lungs had stopped (full cardiac arrest) and they were struggling getting a pulse. I thought no way this is it and he did end up getting a pulse, being transported to the hospital and having his heart operated on. He survived!
I was 13 when I came out as a lesbian to my dad, and he threw me against the wall and strangled me till I passed out, saying that I was a wicked girl who would go to hell for such a sinful choice. The only reason he didn’t kill me was because my brother intervened.
My friend (B) lived down the street from me growing up. Once when she and her mom and brother were out of town her dad called my house and asked my dad if I could come over and take a look at a gift he bought my friend to see if she would like it. I went down and he told me he was in love with me and couldn’t stop thinking of me since I got new glasses. He said vulgar sexual things about oral sex and other s**t I can’t even remember at this point. I went into a panicked state and tricked him into letting me get out of there because at the time I was a huge Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan and I thought “what would Buffy do” literally like those Jesus bracelets lol. I had no idea what to do so I called my other friend (C), who was at a different friends (J) house. I asked C to tell J’s mom what happened because I didn’t know what else to do and telling my parents at the time was out of the question. C comes back to the phone and says “she didn’t believe you” and it was scarier than the event itself in some ways.
I was 12.
During one of my psychotic episodes, the voices were telling me that if I didn't jump off a bridge, all my neighbours would be [unalived]. So I jumped lol.
Broke both of legs and surprisingly nothing fatal. So when I woke up, I was heavily sedated but was telling myself " OMG Now I won't be able to walk". Schizophrenia and paraplegia?? This scared me so much, I cried for days, wishing I had died, until they told me that I was going to walk.
At least, I am a physically healthy paranoid schizophrenic hahaha
When a guy was following me home at night, we were the only ones on the street, and he whispered ' I can smell your fear' behind me
Hiking in Oregon and a grizzly bear stood up from behind a bush ten feet in front of me. Thought for sure I was lunch but he got this disgusted look on his face like "ugh, a fkn *human*" and turned around and walked away. I was shaking in my boots.
When I went into preterm labor at 25 weeks. Same night she was born but wasn't making any sound. She was floppy and not breathing. So grateful to our team who breathed for her. She's delayed some but she's now 20 months and thriving.
When I was 8, I came home from school and my mom had a bag packed. She said we had to go then and I couldn’t take anything with us. I had a 2 year old brother who was nowhere to be found, and I remember screaming at my mother, demanding to know where he was (because he was all had in the whole world) and she told me he was kidnapped by his father and she didn’t know where he was.
His dad saw that my mom called the FBI from the phone bill of all places (and this is all too long of a story to go into), flipped out, and took my brother. Years before my brother was born, my mom and I were also in federal witness protection.
My brother was found safe a couple of days later.
The kidnapping caused a whole ripple of events that ended in a FBI car chase and my stepdad going to prison for 8 years.
Feeling myself dying from Covid pneumonia in March of 2021. The moment my lungs stopped for the first time was the most terrifying moment of my life. I just remember my chest going completely still and internally screaming at them to move while my nurse called a code and started yelling for respiratory. She kept telling me to hold on, just hold on, and I saw the respiratory tech running into the room. I passed out from lack of oxygen right as she slammed the bag on my face. I woke up God-knows-how-long after that on bipap, but it just couldn't keep my oxygen up. It would drop, I would pass out, my lungs would stop, and we would just repeat the process for several hours before they finally moved me to the ICU and told me that my only shot at survival was a ventilator. I agreed. I was on it for 15 days and awake for a lot of that, which was another terrifying experience. If you want more details, you can find them in my history from last year. I don't feel like getting into them now.
Hit black ice on an exit. My Sis in the car with me, I was driving. IDK how many 360's we did. Ended up not hitting anything and stopped inches from a light pole. How we both didn't p**s our pants is beyond me. We were in our teens. It was the worst carnival ride ever.
I was on a rollercoaster, and the safety bar hadn't been secured properly by the attendant. As we climbed the hill, I was struggling to get it to fasten. I managed it before I got to the top, obviously, or I probably wouldn't be writing this.
Son and I were ran over after he exited his school bus. I had to stumble and crawl to him because he flew a lot farther than I did. I thought he was dead, all while trying to get a grip on myself to not pass out, call 911, and stop crying. There was a bus full of children screaming. The bus driver too. 911 couldn't understand me because I could barely speak. They separated us once fire fighters and emt showed. I was treated like garbage because even with injuries they assumed I allowed this to happen to my child. Brought to the hospital in separate ambulances. Wouldn't give me an update for 8 hours on how he was as they were fighting to save his life, all while throwing me in a hallway naked under a sheet crying in pain and worry about my son being alive or not.
If I had not grabbed him in the split second that I did, to take all impact from the car, he'd be dead. He's perfectly healthy. Scarring, missing teeth, and a tbi. But that kid is alive. I'm not sure how he is so lucky. But I'm thankful every single day.
This just happened last December.
I still don't know if they dropped me (unintentionally) or pushed me (intentionally), trauma brain seems pretty intent on keeping those details locked down. But my Gr. 10 classmates holding me out the window to our science class after my attempt to fight back went wrong. And then falling the three stories and somehow landing in the industrial recycling bin that was chock full with end-of-year shredding. Every time I moved I kept expecting to finally hit concrete. Took a bit to pull myself out of the bin, walked to the local pizza hangout across the street in quite the daze.
My son was born with complications. They took him away to resuscitate him. I didn't know if he was alive or dead for 45 minutes. Then the doctor brought him back to the room, and he was OK.
When I saw someone try and jump off a bridge, only to be talked down as i was driving past and then change their mind and jump at exactly the moment I passed. One moment they were there and then I looked in the side mirror, they fell and were just gone.
And there was nothing I could do about it.
I was beaten up by a gang of youth on a bus. I was in hospital for 6 months. I still have headaches from it. I wish they had [taken my life] because the mental scar on my life has been enormous. I could not go out for years. Kept myself to myself. Even now when I have to go out I still get anxious and sometimes it overwhelms me so much I can’t. I only go out for hospital appointments and the odd meal (When I can) I never make eye contact with people I struggle with just the simplest of conversations. Even with my cancer doctor I find it difficult and breakdown.
Losing my eye sight and the doctors not knowing how to save it was tough. Thankfully they saved a bit. That experience has made me see things in a different way. Yeah I know, pun intended 😂
Seeing my dad collapsed on the floor and my mom panicking and crying trying to call an ambulance. Then seeing him die (he was clinically dead for just over a minute) there on the floor and be revived by the EMTs and be carted off to the hospital. He later died a second time and could not be brought back. I was 12 and I’m the one who called all the family members while waiting for the ambulance. I’m the one who had to tell my grandma her son might die.
When my moms brain aneurysm ruptured and she pretty much bled out (internally) on our bathroom floor and it took The ambulance an hour to get there. Me and my grandmother both pretty much watched her die before our eyes and being unable to help other than doing cpr when she stopped breathing
I have schizophrenia, so there are multiple contenders, but the worst was when I had a poster of Stephen Kings IT on my wall. Hallucinated it crawling out of the poster and trying to attack me. Don't recommend, 0/10 experience
Growing up our house was at the end of a mile long dirt road and had been broken into twice so we got a male and female Dobermans. The female immediately bonded with me the male hated everybody but me and dad. He stayed chained up outside and she was free to roam outside. One day when we returned home from the grocery store I went to do my chores and one of them was feeding the male aka Satan. He was asleep and when I went to pet him he jumped me and had me pinned down. He chewed up my left leg my side and my cheek. If it wasn’t for the female aka Goldie I would have been dead. To this day I can still see the look in his eyes. I raise Dobermans now and I’ve never let a fear hold me back, life is too short
Had a couple of them that I couldn't decide between:
First one: Driving fast on a rural road, two lanes & hilly. I pop over a hill and there's a car stopped in the lane just ahead, and another car coming from the other direction. No way to stop in time and no open lane. Everything went slow motion in my head, and I whipped my car onto the tiny gravel shoulder with inches to spare and got around without losing control. My friends in the car were all screaming.
Second one: Just got out of surgery for my neck and was pretty much immobilized. They told me if I felt any pain to click the button for the morphine drip taped to my hand, and that it self limits to every 15 minutes. I'm in pain and click it. No relief. This goes on for a while and the pain gets worse and worse. The young attendant finally starts paying attention and says "Oh. We left the clip on the drip line" and pulls it off. I knew I'd clicked that button a few times so there was probably a lot in the line. My last memory was the older nurse in the room yelling "Nooooo!" and lunging towards me.
Hemorrhage during a miscarriage. (13 weeks.)
Had been to my 12 week scan late to discover the heartbeat recently stopped, according to measurement. Was given pills to expedite the process and expel tissue.
I took them and nothing really happened aside from a ton of pain for nearly two days.
I was sitting down while my husband made some dinner for us and suddenly I felt something *large* make it’s way down. I went to the bathroom and it’s like I was pissing blood. Constant pouring. I didn’t want to ruin my clothes or bleed on the floor, so I ran the shower.
I was standing in the shower with the water running and it just wouldn’t stop. My husband came in, he was horrified. The last thing I remember saying is that I shouldn’t be bleeding like this and that something was wrong. Passed out. Luckily my husband was within arms reach so I didn’t fall.
I woke up in an ambulance and had to have two blood transfusions + emergency surgery. I remember feeling intense panic while also feeling… light? Like I was made of air. I have never seen that much blood in my life. I want to try again for a child one day but I’m terrified something like that will happen again.
TRIGGER WARNING: Death
Husband died 3 years ago this month of a rare disease, cjd. I was laying next to him as he gasped and took his last breath. Within seconds his skin grew cold and I watched his fingernails turn blue. Suddenly he looked like a complete different being and in my state of mind, I convinced myself that in the time I’d been in the bathroom 15 minutes earlier, they’d switched him with someone else, and that my husband was really alive somewhere else. I’d been present when my grandmother, dad, and mom died but this was the first time someone changed so drastically that I couldn’t recognize them. I was in denial for weeks thinking he really wasn’t gone. To this day, I sometimes think he’s out there and maybe he’ll come home when he’s able to. I wonder if I have ptsd because sometimes the image is something I can’t escape.
Was working on a lobster boat and as the traps were going off the back my foot got caught in the lines and I was quickly dragged towards the water. As I got towards the edge of the deck I managed to grab the railing and a split second later my boot popped off and I was free.
If my boot didn't come off I would have probably been dragged to the bottom of the ocean and never been found, crab food for sure. My life flashed before my eyes and I have never been more scared. The drink I had when got back to land was the best I've ever tasted and I didn't work at sea for much longer after that.
I ran out of oxygen while scuba diving. I was 70 feet underwater and had a faulty oxygen gauge on my regulator that said I had plenty of pressure. And all of a sudden I couldn't breathe.
Diagnosis of bladder cancer, the best day of my life was six months later when the urologist reported that I was completely clean
Car accident. It was flying, fully airborne, sideways, heading towards other cars. I had a moment of “we’ll be right back” and didn’t really black out, just stopped perceiving, and snapped back the moment the car’s motion stopped. I was unscathed.
It’s also one of my lowest points. All because I was angry at a woman who s**t all over me and mistreated me, I angrily made a driving mistake and nearly [unalived] myself and a few friends who were also in the car. I did drive again, but I don’t take any safety for granted now. And I don’t let my anger take control anymore.
Finally, I’ll say this: if a significant other mistreats you and shows no consternation or guilt, remember that more than their apology later. Abusive relationships are not ok, and the only correct answer is to walk away from the abusers. It is not our job to fix them, and we are the last one who ever could, were it possible.
Mountain lion screamed at me while i was out photographing at night by myself 15 days ago
But maybe just recency bias cuz i get scared a lot
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