People Describe The All-Time Scariest Thing They've Ever Experienced

Little girl covering her eyes
Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash

Perhaps one reason horror films are so popular is that people know they are watching a work of fiction.

As soon as they leave the theatre or turn off the TV, they are out of the terrifying world they've been a part of for two hours but got the rush of adrenaline they need, similar to riding a roller coaster or thrill ride.

For this reason, no movie, TV show, or book, no matter how scary they are, can never equal being scared in real life.

As finding yourself, or worse your family, in a dangerous and/or life-threatening situation is an experience so terrifying, it genuinely defies description.


Redditor Asleep_Camp_2660 was curious to learn about the scariest experiences people ever had, leading them to ask:
"What was the scariest moment in your life, and why?"

Witnessing A Near-Death Experience

"I walked in on my dad, looking like he was dead (eyes open, but lifeless)."

"He was suffering a full cardiac arrest."

"I called 911 and gave him chest compressions for 10 minutes until EMTs arrived."

"When they got there they told me his heart and lungs had stopped (full cardiac arrest) and they were struggling getting a pulse."

"I thought no way this is it and he did end up getting a pulse, being transported to the hospital and having his heart operated on."

"He survived!"- Caseylightning

A Life Nearly Over Before It Even Began

"When I went into preterm labor at 25 weeks."

"Same night she was born but wasn't making any sound."

"She was floppy and not breathing."

"So grateful to our team who breathed for her."

"She's delayed some but she's now 20 months and thriving."- prettysouthernchick

Taken By Surprise In Your Sleep

"When a poster hanging above my bed fell on me in the middle of the night."

"Thought I was being attacked."- Midnite_St0rm

Black Ice

"Hit black ice on an exit."

"My Sis in the car with me, I was driving."

"IDK how many 360's we did."

"Ended up not hitting anything and stopped inches from a light pole."

"How we both didn't piss our pants is beyond me."

"We were in our teens."

"It was the worst carnival ride ever."- pgabrielfreak

Heroic Behavior

"I used to live near a large open stormwater drain with no fencing around it."

"Three drunk guys drove their car straight into it."

"I went out and found the driver trying to get his friends foot out of the windshield."

"On the field on other side of the drain I saw the third passenger who was covered in blood."

"I asked if they were ok and my neighbor called the ambulance/police."

"The blood covered friend passed out and was twitching so I ran to the car, grabbed a towel from the back seat and ran to help him."

"I found a large, deep cut on the back of his neck/head."

"I rolled him to his back and used the weight of his head to put pressure on the wound."

"I was talking to him, trying to keep him awake and he went into shock, twitching and unresponsive."

"This was the moment I thought a man died in my hands."

"I was able to wake him and the ambulance took over from there."

"That was the most harrowing moment of my life."- TinaDunk559

Escaping For A Better Life

"It was the night that I (17 F[emale]) was escaping to Europe from Turkey (at the time I was 15)."

"I wouldn't call it a moment because it was a whole night."

"A few things happened so I'm gonna write them down here."

"The first one was actually in daylight."

"The driver was taking the group that I am escaping with to the border."

"And out of 5 people, at least 3 of them were wanted by the police ."

"We weren't criminals, don't worry."

"Government is led by a dictator so anything you do that they don't like is a crime."

" So as you can guess, we weren't supposed to get pulled aside by the police to check IDs."

"But there was a control thing on the highway and they were almost gonna stop us."

"We got lucky and the police pulled the truck in front of us and we were let through."

"I was so scared that I hold my mom's hand and didn't let go until we passed them."

"After I let go, her hand was white as paper."

"The second one is when we were out of the car and running to the border with two smugglers leading us."

"They were stopping us to lie on the ground every 30 seconds just in case there are soldiers."

"But one time they stopped us and we lay on the ground for almost 30 minutes."

"The smugglers were gone and all we can see was the starry sky."

"We didn't move, breathe when necessary, and didn't say a thing for 30 minutes."

"It was quite scary."

"And this one happened in Greece."

"We were in Greece for about 10 minutes before the soldiers found us."

"The smugglers told us to leave our bags on the ground and put our hands up if we ever see a Greek soldier."

"I am not an idiot but after some emotional breakdown on the way there and seeing the soldiers with guns, I started crying and made up all those weird scenarios where they execute us by a firing squad lmao."

"I know where it doesn't sound like a really scary thing but it is quite hard to explain the atmosphere. "

'You have to live it to understand it."- semrAwashere

Fear Of Flying

"I'm absolutely terrified of flying, so being stuck on a long haul flight with what I considered to be terrible turbulence wasn't exactly fun."

"I was in an absolute state of panic and was certain we'd crash and die."

"I've avoided flying ever since and when I have to in the future, I'll make sure to get whatever prescription that knocks me out completely."

"If I still know who, where and why I am when I'm boarding, I'm not getting on that plane."- sadsledgemain

Nearly Dying... TWICE

"Had a couple of them that I couldn't decide between."

"First one: Driving fast on a rural road, two lanes & hilly."

"I pop over a hill and there's a car stopped in the lane just ahead, and another car coming from the other direction."

"No way to stop in time and no open lane.'

"Everything went slow motion in my head, and I whipped my car onto the tiny gravel shoulder with inches to spare and got around without losing control."

"My friends in the car were all screaming."

"Second one: Just got out of surgery for my neck and was pretty much immobilized."

"They told me if I felt any pain to click the button for the morphine drip taped to my hand, and that it self limits to every 15 minutes."

"I'm in pain and click it."

"No relief."

"This goes on for a while and the pain gets worse and worse."

"The young attendant finally starts paying attention and says 'Oh, We left the clip on the drip line' and pulls it off.'

"I knew I'd clicked that button a few times so there was probably a lot in the line."

"My last memory was the older nurse in the room yelling 'Nooooo!' and lunging towards me."- lapsangsouchogn

Even Stephen King couldn't come up with material this terrifying.

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