Children have memories––and they're very long. That's why child development professionals stress the importance of communicating with children should they experience a traumatic event. Listening and encouraging them to share their feelings (even if you can't answer all their questions right away) is essential.

Kids are not immune from scary experiences. Such is the world we live in. People shared their stories after Redditor Rockyroadman21 asked the online community,

"What's a scary story from your childhood?"

"He saw me..."

"My mother took me to visit her friend when I was 8 years old. This friend lived alone in an old house. I was exploring the house and went up the stairs where all the bedrooms were. As I got to the top of the stairs I looked to the far end of the hall and saw an old man standing there."

"He saw me but he was looking through me (difficult to describe). I knew instantly that something wasn't right because the lower half of his body was not really defined. I raced down the stairs to tell my mother and the friend told her that yes, this is the ghost of the house and he is harmless."

"I have never forgotten the creepy feeling that I had."

otoph

Very creepy! Sounds like you haven't seen him since.

"I woke up..."

"I woke up and saw a shadow man run then jump at me while I was in bed. I was so struck with fear I was unable to move but he disappeared right before he landed. The memory was so terrifying I still remember it nearly 30 years later."

BW_Bird

Shadows? Nooope.

I've had a few of those dreams myself and still remember them.

"I have always insisted..."

"I have always insisted that the house I lived in until I was 8 is creepy. It was only a year or two ago that my family casually mentioned that it was built where a Victorian maternity ward used to be. So, it's mildly possible that ghost babies haunted me."

NiamhHA

Thankfully, I think most people would say this is out of the realm of possibility.

"One night I woke up..."

"One night I woke up to yelling and crashing and walked into the living room to see my dad fistfighting a complete stranger. He beat the absolute sh*t out of him and threw him down the stairs into our unfinished basement and locked the door since that was the only way in or out of there and called the police."

"Guy thought nobody was home and decided to try to burglarize the place and walked around the corner and bumped right into my dad in the dark who was half asleep on his way to the bathroom."

Victor117

Terrifying. You're very lucky your dad was awake!

"It took me years..."

"When I was around 9 years old, I was on vacation with my mom. The hotel gave our room key, in the middle of the night, to some random man claiming it was his room. Luckily the chain was drawn, but the man was very drunk and stood there yelling into the room."

"It took me years before I would stay in a hotel again."

ChocoboToes

This is incredibly irresponsible on the part of the hotel. Thankful it wasn't much worse. Hopefully you pursued legal action of some kind?

"I was around 12..."

"I was around 12, Wellington in NZ where I grew up is very hilly, so you'd often get streets built in valleys etc, our house's back yard was at the foot of a steep bank that was about one story or so high, with more houses up there."

"One day I saw a dead bird in our back yard, I walked over and saw that someone had carefully and methodically pushed maybe 100 nails all the way into the thing in a tightly packed pin cushion grid square arrangement. I vividly remember how little space there was between them and how the flesh in there was like pâté."

"I was super freaked out and I looked up, because where else could it have come from, and there at the top of the cliff, backlit by the overcast sky and in silhouette was a little kid standing silently staring down at me."

"Absolute creepiest thing I ever saw."

thewhitedog

This sounds like a brilliant horror movie opener. Disturbing!

"Me being completely naive..."

"When I was about 10 and my brother was 13, we were walking home around dusk and a white panel van pulled up and a man said our mom had sent him to give us a ride home."

"Me being completely naive and innocent stared getting in and my brother right behind me at the last second was suspicious and told me to run with him so we bolted."

"Years later I’ve never forgotten that and the older I get, the more it freaks me out but mostly I get mad that we didn’t get a license plate and call the cops because who knows what else that guy did later."

kdubstep

Hindsight is 20/20 when you're an adult. Don't be too hard on yourself.

"When I lived in Romania..."

"When I lived in Romania I fell off of a porcelain sink and landed in some of the shards in multiple areas (knee mostly). At the romanian hospital, there was a young girl my age that drank bleach or some kind of corrosive acid or something and the sight of her skin and how she looked at the chin was down in her chest was horrific."

iamegucha

The effects of corrosive acid on the body are NO JOKE.

And please... do not Google search any of it.

"Next day..."

"Driving to a campground with my uncle and my Dad. We saw a trailer with a tire off and a bunch of transmission fluid all over the dirty pavement. I was so impressed my uncle (a mechanic) could identify transmission fluid that quickly driving by."

"Next day we read in the local paper the guy was smashed under the truck. What my uncle said was transmission fluid ended up being blood. Turns out he was trying to protect me and they thought it was blood the whole time."

"Still remember what that looked like."

jgorbeytattoos

Quick thinking from your uncle, I see!

"I'm glad we are where we are..."

"Me, my mum and siblings stayed awake for several nights because my dad threatened to kill us whilst we slept. That was the worst time of my life. I'm glad we are where we are and away from him."

thematrixs

So sorry about this horrible experience. Thankfully you're free of him!

Everyone around you has a story. Trust: Someone sitting next to you on public transit has a scary story from their childhood that altered them significantly.

Have some stories of your own? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!

Want to "know" more?

Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.

People Confess Which 'Adulting' Tasks They're So Tired Of Performing
Alex Kotliarskyi on Unsplash

We may not like it, but getting older is pretty inevitable.

With age may come wisdom, but it also comes with lots of responsibilities.

And some days, we're just over it.

Keep reading... Show less
People Who Aren't Afraid To Die Share Their Experiences
Photo by Aron Visuals on Unsplash

I would love to know how people don't fear death.

I mean, it's the end. Life will be over. That kind of sucks.

Yet there are people who find tranquility in it.

Can you teach the rest of us?

Redditor deensuk wanted to hear from everyone who has a calmness about the heading to the afterlife. They asked:

"People who are not scared of death, why?"
Keep reading... Show less

Dating and the search for love and companionship... What a nightmare.

This journey plays out nothing like in the movies.

Every Prince or Princess (or everything in BTW) seems to have a touch of the psycho.

The things people say during what should be simple dinner conversation can leave a dining partner aghast.

Like... do you hear you?

Redditor detroit_michigldan wanted to discuss all the best ways to crash and burn when trying to make a romantic connection. They asked:

"You're on a date and it's going really great. What can another person say to ruin it completely?"
Keep reading... Show less