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Years ago a young woman told me about her grandmother, who had survived a home invasion in South Africa. It was a very unsettling story. Her grandmother was never the same afterward and became consumed by paranoia. There is something so horrible about having your home violated like that, of feeling like you'll never be safe again, even in a space that's supposed to be your sanctuary from the outside world. The young woman confessed that the thought of going through something similar continues to scare the hell out of her and honestly, I can't blame her. It's a frightening thought.

After Redditor Kingofthelosers asked the online community, "What are you terribly afraid of?" people shared their stories.


"Being randomly killed..."

Being randomly killed or abducted and tortured.

Basically, I'm most afraid of people, because while most people are inherently good, there are a few who aren't - and all it takes is being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

immortalpinecones

"People look at me..."

Losing my mind. People look at me like I'm crazy, but I'm legitimately afraid of losing myself and becoming crazy.

Taylor12142

"I've never been in such an accident..."

Driving off-road into a body of water and being stuck in the car as the water level inside rises. I've never been in such an accident, I've never known anyone who has been in such an accident, but somehow this fear has been with me for a very long time. And this has only gotten worse since having kids because now I picture them strapped into their car seats behind me as the water level rises.

angeliqu

Terrifying. Utterly terrifying.

Anytime I see this in a film, it unsettles me.

Then I see movies like I Care a Lot, which somehow managed to take something very scary and make it ridiculous.

"There's no way..."

Being falsely accused of a crime. The power of the State against little broke me. There's no way I don't lose in this situation.

DuvalHeart

"Rather than risk failing..."

Failure. My fear of failure can be crippling. Rather than risk failing, I all out avoid situations where I might fail. I hate it but self-doubt really kills my ability to accomplish anything in life.

​SavingsBall_6548

This is all too relatable.

I remember feeling this way when I was younger. It was paralyzing. Thankfully, time and age has been kind to me. I'm so different now. Hopefully things improve for this person.

"If I ever go back..."

Dying in a plane crash. I can picture it so perfectly - the way the air would be pulled out of your lungs as you scream, the feeling of weightlessness warring with extreme gravity depending on the way you're falling, and the certain knowledge that you are about to die horribly.

I moved to Europe and haven't visited anyone in the states in about 5 years. If I ever go back, I'm looking into finding some sort of passenger ship if it exists.

Lulu_42

"I don't know why."

Fire drills. I don't know why. I have always had an irrational fear of them. Once the alarm goes off, it's fine, but it's like the anticipation that freaks me out. School was genuinely hard because of it and I know I can never be a teacher. That's okay though because I never wanted to be one.

whowhatwherewhenwhy6

Fire drills––any drills, really––have a way of amplifying your nerves.

Growing up in the Columbine and post-Columbine world, fire drills and shooting drills were a way of life. And yes, they sucked.

"I've had sleep paralysis..."

Losing control of my body. I've had sleep paralysis and I've been physically restrained/drugged in a dangerous situation, that kind of helplessness is just the most awful feeling in the world. My worst nightmare would be living in that state permanently.

bijou_x

"I just can't do it."

Sleep facing a mirror. I just can't do it. I will cover the mirror with a blanket if it is facing the bed. It just freaks me out.

Nails_jello_2_a_tree

"But imagine..."

Most people would want to die in their sleep when they're super old. But imagine being 95 or so, and night after night having to go to sleep and not knowing if you'll wake up the next morning.

mrderpfrog

How do we face our fears?

That's not an easy question to answer. Thankfully, time and experience can teach you a lot about yourself and what you can handle. It's a big world and there's so much we still don't know about it. The least we can do is take care of ourselves and try to live in it.

Have some of your stories to share? Feel free to write about them in the comments below.

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