Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

As FDR once said, “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself". But I beg to differ--I have every right to be afraid of heights. I have every right to be too scared to go to the Empire State Building, and cry every time I play a VR game that involves being on the top of fake buildings. The fear is real, y'all.


As it turns out, there are a lot of universal fears out there. And the people of Reddit have a thing or two to say. Suck it, Roosevelt. WowADeadMidget asked:

What's your biggest fear?

​I haven’t even started this article yet, and I’m already sweating. Let’s dive in.

​That would keep me awake too.

“Drowning, getting stuck in some tight place and asphyxiating/dying of hunger in there, or getting steamed to death.

That's pretty much the shared 1st place."

PabolTheH*e

“I'm 34 years old and was very close to drowning last year. Got dumped out of a canoe and was pinned against a tree in a current. I pulled myself out and it took about every bit of upper body strength I had, didn't even really realize the severity of it while it was happening because if my head had stayed under I was done for. A person of smaller stature would have been in very serious trouble in the same situation. I think about it a lot too, usually when I'm trying to go to sleep lol."

Helms11

A valid fear.

Snl GIF by Saturday Night Live Giphy

“I choked on a piece of steak home alone a few months ago and had to give myself the Heimlich maneuver. It took 3 tries. I'll never forget my dog staring at me and the thought of my girlfriend coming home to find me dead on the floor of our apartment.

Now I think about that every time I eat by myself. So choking to death alone is my greatest fear."

FruitCakeSally

This is heartbreaking.​

“Biggest fear is losing everything I have worked so hard for later in life. I watched my parents work hard do everything right build wealth and then almost towards their 50s my father got sick, lost his job. And now struggle to make ends they had to sell anything that had any value to them.

Now they just go through life with seemingly little enjoyment because they had everything set and in a blink of an eye it was gone and probably never come back.”

94Jstu

This is why you should check in with your friends.

“Being one of those people who dies alone in their home and doesn't get found for weeks or more because they have no one who cares enough to notice they're not around anymore.”

Purple011

“There was an old man in our vicinity who died like this. Apparently he died on the toilet and been there for weeks in the summer heat with closed windows and doors so the smell was also not noticable to the neighbours. The firemen and policemen brought the body down from the flat in two bags apparently it was already falling into several pieces.

The smell was lingering in the apartment for a few days, one of my friends lives two floors down and he said it was unbearable.”

Wilson96HUN

​Let’s go deeper, shall we? Sorry in advance.

Good advice.

Will Smith Memory GIF by STARZ Giphy

“Memory loss!!! Literally, everything I know in my life is memories.”

Jackie_Mojica

“When I started to have memory problems, it super freaked me out. Now it's a little easier. I surround myself with trusted people and write everything down. Memory is important, but if you take care of yourself and find ways to keep them externally it can help a lot. Memory books, notes, friends.”

Odd_ender

Spooky.

“Deep water or caves with no light that you have to crawl to get through. So a cave full of water would be the worst.

That or what happened to that guy who was repairing an industrial bread oven when it turned on and he couldn't switch it back off from the inside.”

TheseNamesAreLames

I’m sorry, WHAT???

“Rabies.

You're fine one moment, and then the next day you have a headache. Turns out you got infected on that camping trip six years ago and it's been hiding in you ever since.

Now that you have a headache, it's in your brain and you're already dead. There's next to nothing doctors can do except put you in a coma and say a prayer, but odds are nearly 100% that if you do survive that you're a vegetable or nearly one.

You experience incredible pain, irrational hydrophobia, manic behavioral changes, and a total loss of motor control near the end. It's got to be one of the most humiliating, dehumanizing and terrifying ways to go, and it can happen just like that.

Rabies is terrifying.”

Sdavis2911

​If that last one didn’t shake you, these next few will. Read at your own risk.

​All we can do is stay optimistic.

heaven gate GIF by South Park Giphy

“Not being alive anymore - the finality.

I'm not afraid of dying - the act of it, anyway. I'm not afraid of what comes next - I've not bothered myself with that one.

What I'm afraid of is being… done. Here one day, then gone. Not able to do anything else.

I cannot out it into better words, that's how suffocating the anxiety of being gone is for me. Maybe it would be better if I were religious and believed in an after life, but the best I can do is convince myself that I believe your personal energy spreads to other beautiful things in life when you pass. But the mind, the mind just being… done. That is truly frightening to me.”

Cannacupcake

Don’t watch the latest Purge movie.

“Societal collapse. A climate or economic or disease-based destruction of society as we know it. Every part of normal life ceasing to exist, and every person having to fend for themselves. There's a documentary called 'Collapse' that scared the crap out of me."

Biloela

"An even more frightening thought is that collapse is already happening, and we just don't have the perspective to recognize it. After the collapse of Rome, people living in Roman territories still considered themselves Romans for a long time, even though the Roman state was gone. Granted, things happen a lot more quickly in the modern world, and that in and of itself is concerning - the rate of change is ever-increasing. What happens to any system that encounters increasingly rapid changes? What happens to an airplane or a bridge or a human being whose rate of change keeps accelerating? They spin out of control until failure.

Climate change is a potentially civilization-ending event amongst several other candidates for bringing about our doom. Nobody has bothered to fix it yet, and even with more mundane problems, I feel that the government has already abandoned us. Just like some poor farmers five hundred miles away from the city of Rome, we cannot hope for the state to come and save us once things break down - they'll be too busy enjoying the last of their feasts, orgies, or taxpayer-funded drugs before the lights go out."

Waffle_bastard

A parent’s worst nightmare.

“The thought of anything/anyone hurting or something seriously bad happening to my daughter.

I once heard someone say that having a child is like taking a piece of your heart and letting it walk around outside of your body.

That’s exactly what it feels like. I don't care for much things, but I would be nothing but an empty shell without her.”

Noctis89

Alright, now that you’ve read all of that, go drink some water and take a nap. It was a doozy.

Now I’m thinking about societal collapse. Great.

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