Fear is a part of the human experience, like joy and sadness.

In fact, fear usually keeps us safe--we don't know what this weird berry is, so maybe we shouldn't eat it. That growling sound was ominous, right? So perhaps we shouldn't go over there.

But it's so unpleasant to feel fear. Too unpleasant for words.


u/KingWalf asked:

People of Reddit, When is one time you have felt genuine, 100% fear?

Here were some of those answers.

Engulfed

When I was woken up by my dogs going nuts and found out my house was on fire. By the time I had woken up the stairs were engulfed in flames. I truly lost all sense of what to do. Thought it was all over. Eventually got to a window and ended up throwing my dogs out the window ( all were okay) and jumping out the window. I never would wish that feeling on anybody

Chicagospawn6

Close Call

It was 5 years ago almost to the day. I was home with my two daughters who at the time were 3 and just over 1. I was giving them a bath, kneeling on the ground and all of a sudden it felt like something exploded in my heart. I remember thinking just get the kids out of the water, nothing else matters. I got them out of the water and was able to call an ambulance.


I was taken to the hospital and long story short I had blood clots in both lungs and my right knee. They think a piece of the knee blood clot broke free and passed through my heart. I am very lucky to be alive and so grateful I was able to get my daughters out of the tub.

I found out I have multiple blood clotting disorders and am on blood thinners for life, but I am alive!

mkrzemin

It Came From Beneath The Birthday Party

My wife and son were out of town, so I had the house to myself. I used that opportunity to do something I never get to do - have a shower with the washroom door open.

Small things like that make me happy.

Anyway, I was just getting out of the shower, when - without a sound - I see someone's head slowly go by in the dark corridor outside the washroom door!


I nearly shat myself in terror; the doors were all locked, how did anyone get in? And there was something unnatural and menacing about that slow silent glide by the door. Like they must have known I was there, but they just didn't care. Plus whoever it was was really tall - the head was seven feet off the ground. My heart raced so fast I thought I was going to have a heart attack.

Wet and terrified, I peered out of the door ...

... to find the mystery solved: the "head" was my son's helium balloon toy, partly deflated over time, floating by on the slight air current.

In short, I had nearly been frightened to death by my kid's toy. Not my proudest moment.

Malthus1

Adrenaline Followed By Numbness

When I was still a beginning driver, I basically misjudged a turn at a highway exit when it was raining. My car swiveled and turned around. Somehow I managed to get it to stop, but I ended up bumping the side railing with the back of my car, and the car turning more than 180 degrees on the road before coming to a halt.

This is a very busy exit, and if someone had been right behind me I'd have been dead.

Somehow I managed to gather my wits, restart the car, turn it around, and drive off before another car hit me.

I stopped at the earliest possible parking opportunity, and that was when I felt it - the fear. I just started shaking uncontrollably.

Kay_Elle

Don't Test Whether Or Not Bears Can Match Cars

Driving to Alaska on the Alcan came around a turn and standing in the road was a mother brown bear and two cubs. I was in a 1980 Ford Courier pickup with the exterior body thickness of an aluminum can. I came to a quick halt as she faced the vehicle in a clearly protective stance. Unsure if backing up would set her off I put it in R and sat unmoving for what felt like an eternity until the cubs ambled into the woods and she followed.

es330td

Visions From Beyond

A few years back I was in a toxic relationship with an individual suffering from several mental illness. He refused to take medications. I had not a clue how bad it had gotten until he was driving us back to our apartment.

He started rambling about how God chose him to save my soul and I was a fallen angel. He would send me back to heaven. He floored the gas on a short dead end road and almost drove into a cement wall. I remember briefly wondering if I should jump put the car at 50 mph, or stay in and pray the airbag saved me. He slammed the brake last minute as I was about to open the door and jump.


Absolute fear. I ended up hospitalized a few days later due to other scary relationship related events and never saw him again.

Hands down, one of the more terrifying moments of my life, but not the only one I experienced by being with him.

heros_soup

Crisis (SO Narrowly) Averted

The morning of my mom's wedding. Everyone relaxing. Eating breakfast. Clothes everywhere. Cousins running around. All of the adults are on their porch chilling.

I hear my daughter SCREAMING. I run in the dining room. There were clothes draped over the back of a dining room chair. The clothes had a metal coat hanger on them. She had gotten the hook of the metal hanger under her eyelid.

I grabbed the back of her head and slowly pulled the hook out. Put a little ice on her eye for a bit. Luckily, it hadn't hit her eyeball at all.

SailingmanWork

Such Palpatations

I once woke up with my diaphragm cramped up and basically almost completely unable to breathe and with an unreasonable pain in my chest.

I was cold as hell and sweating profusely, I could not stand up and every position hurt terribly, lying on the side like a fetus hurt the least. I was sure I was going to die. After a few minutes of panic tho I was sort of ok with it.

The situation resolved itself in about 40 minutes, but they were not pleasant. 20 years later I still remember the sensation.

StSpider

Possibly Worse Than A Ghost

When i was trying to sleep at around 3 and felt someone press on my bed. Then bag on the chair started shaking. Then again i felt something on my bed. Finally I had the courage to switch on light and found a giant rat on my bed .

jakewang1

Drop Out Of The Sky

I was flying an airliner. We were maybe 1,000 above the ground while on approach to land at a smaller airport. There were thunderstorms in the area and we ended up in a microburst with zero visibility. We got a wind shear warning in the cockpit and started to go around. At full throttle and the nose up we were still sinking at around 400ft/min. Everything seemed to be running in slow motion both me and the other pilot were running through our required actions and call outs due to the training. In the back of my mind all I could think about was I can't see the ground and we are falling. I know there is a hill out here somewhere, this is where I am going to die. The plane got down to around 400ft off the ground before it finally started to climb. This was the most fear I had ever felt in my life.

121guy

Photo by UX Gun on Unsplash

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