People Explain Which Harmless Things They Were Terrified Of As A Kid
Caleb Woods/Unsplash

I have a friend who is terrified of moths.

She's an adult, but the fear has been there since she was a child. Interestingly, as is the case with many phobias, she is fully aware that moths are pretty much harmless. Especially to her as a fully grown adult human.

Still - she has that involuntary panic reaction every time she sees one and finds herself regularly screaming and sobbing her way through "moth season" (she means Spring.)

Reddit user BlueberryJingle13 asked:

"What is something harmless you were scared of as a child?"

Most of us outgrow those irrational childhood fears, though that doesn't mean they didn't have us in their grips when we were younger.

Here's what freaked Reddit out.


drain GIFGiphy

"The drain in the bath tub. The tiny whirlpool of water would suck me down with it"

- JAR-man999

"Apparently when I was a toddler my dad told me spiders would come out of the drain if I stayed in the bath after the plug got taken out. I still feel uncomfortable taking the plug out the drain if I'm still in the bath, even now I'm 28"

- ImQuiteRandy

"I seem to remember being a daredevil with that and sticking my finger in it while holding onto the side of the tub to make sure it couldn't actually pull me in."

- doomalgae

"I had a children's book about a baby crocodile that was sucked into the drain and was crying alone in the sewer system because it didn't know how to get back to the zoo and it's parents. Also scared me for a while after reading that."

- More_Example6153

"38 years old and I’m still frightened I’ll get sucked down the drain."

- Arkady2009


season 7 GIFGiphy

"Fidgeting at a livestock auction and accidentally buying a cow."

- graceamazed

"This one made me lol. This is exactly the brand of anxiety I would have as one-off fears as a kid."

- Triairius

"I went to a house foreclosure auction in my 20s and I had the same concern. I was convinced that I'd make the wrong move and end up buying a house that I couldn't afford."

- UndeadBread

"2000$ to that little kid that scratched his head. SOLD"

- l0u1s11

Sinkhole De Mayo

"I had an irrational fear that a sinkhole would randomly open under me. I would walk around grabbing onto nearby objects just so I'd have something to grab onto when the Earth inevitably tried to consume me."

- DatWeirdo04

"I was scared a hole would open up under me just to swallow me then close up as if nothing happened."

- Theveryshyboy

"Me too!"

"What’s ironic is that I’m 34 years old and moved to a town 2 years ago and there’s been 4 sinkholes already! Like why?!"

- TitusLemonades

"Holy sh*t! I thought that I was the only one with that fear!!!"

- Tricksyknitsy

"I'm not alone. Yaaaay"

- gliitch0xFF

Draft Or Giraffe?

"Giraffes. Not because of what you think. I lost a fair amount of hearing due to a compilation with my tonsils, so when my dad tucked me in at night and said “I’ll close the window, wouldn’t want the draft to get you…” Well, you can assume what I heard."

"I thought there was a rabid giraffe that would step over backyard fences and eat kids if their windows were open."

- SsjAndromeda

"That’s too funny and somewhat wholesome. It was sloths for me. I used to have nightmares of a sloth slowly chasing me. You can never run fast in dreams."

- Strongbad23

"Bro, same f*cking thing. My mum used to say wow the drafts coming from there at a cold dark place on the house and I used to imagine like a giraffe hiding there or an invisible giraffe and it was kinda scary lol"

- notarealpersondw

"I literally had the same fear!! "

"I was in a car when I was told to close the windows so that the draft doesn’t get in and I also heard ‘giraffe’, I then envisioned rabid giraffes trying to break into the car.. I thought I was the only one with this experience!"

- Kovu-and-Dedenne

You Too Will Have A Mullet

"My brother told me someday I too had to get a mullet haircut"

- MuluLizidrummer

"I have a mullet currently. I'd be scared too"

- BlueberryJingle

"Such an older brother thing to say"

- catnmoose

"I mean, mullet families are a thing. I used to see at least a few day when I lived in the midwest. Granted the oldest son usually has a buzzcut."

- 0kokuryu0

Loud Sound Check

scared season 5 GIFGiphy

"The THX sound before movies"

- Geezson123

"The audience is now deaf…”

- User Deleted

"Convinced that's why I have tinnitus."

- DillPixels

"Same, little me would run behind the couch and plug my ears. Now I've just learned I have sensitive hearing, and that urge to run and hide when it comes has never left."

- OtaPotato


"When I was really young, like 3 - 5 years old, I thought the vacuum would come to life at night and try to suck out my lungs while I slept."

"So, I insisted that the vacuum be kept in the basement, locked in a closet, because clearly it couldn't climb two whole flights of stairs."

- smokehidesstars

"Imagine you wake up one night and the vacuum is just in the middle of your room LOL"

- BlueberryJingle

"Lol. My sister was terrified of the vacuum as well but it was because one time it caught the edge of her nightgown and I guess she thought it was going to suck her up. She was scared of vacuums until a pretty unreasonable age"

- mercenaryblade17

Surprise Flush

"Automatic flushing toilets in public places."

"Not me, but my 2 daughters when they were young (like 3y-6y). I had to stand next to them with my hand over the sensor so they could escape the stall before the toilet flushed."

- AltyMcSalty

"Loud toilet flushes still scare the crap out of me, even if they aren’t automatic and I’m prepared. I have no idea why. I’m 27, and I still have to sprint from the washroom at once I flush."

"It’s only when I’m alone though for some reason. During shifts when lots of other people are around, I have no issues. I have no explanation for this fear."

- TwiceUponADecember

"As a former daughter who was petrified of auto flush toilets, I want to thank you on their behalf."

- wevegotscience

"Pro tip for if you become a grandparent. Carry a pad of post it notes. Stick one to the sensor so the toilet won't flush unexpectedly."

- Paradisedreamer7

Bald Head

"The bald head of my uncle"

- italoomg

"Bald heads used to freak me out too when I was a kid, they just looked weird to me."

- idratherchangemyold1

"As a teen, I thought going bald would be the worst thing imaginable. Now that I’m 40, lost most of my hair, and shave it down every day, I couldn’t be happier. I love the easiness of having a bald head."


Aqua Vacuum

Water Satisfying GIF by MaytronicsGiphy

"My grandparents robotic pool cleaner 😂"

- minivan2022

"Oh man I can't believe the first comment is one I can actually relate to. I totally forgot about it until reading this. Yeah that 'creepy crawly' thing sliding around the bottom of the pool was unsettling, especially since when in the water at the same time of it you could hear it 'ticking' every second through the water. I remember asking them to pull it out before I went in. This was a fairly brief phase but it happened."

- Chromattix

"Lived in a house for years with a pool vacuum. Many adults are scared of those too lol"

- Triairius

"I actually have an irrational phobia of that thing it's wack"

"Stupid Barracuda/Creepy Crawly pool cleaner it looks so creepy"

- thegoldilocks_zone

"I came here to also say pool cleaner! We had one with two long “tentacles” that sprayed water out of the tips and swirled around the bottom of a pool….like a creepy robot octopus ."

- HAYYme

Do you and Reddit share similar phobias?

Is there something you want to add to the list?

Want to hear about my (completely understandable when you know the backstory) severe distrust of clowns that USED TO BE a childhood phobia?

Let's get into it in the comments.

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