People Share The Harmless Things They Were Terrified Of As Children

When you’re a kid, a lot of the things you think and believe don’t really make a lot of sense in the grand scheme of things. However, when your whole world is one block wide, it’s easy to create monsters out of the strangest things.

On Reddit, people came together to share the harmless things they were terrified of as kids, and the results are hilarious.

In Their Defense, They Do Look Like Rotating Knives

ceiling fan
Photo Credit: Shriya Patil / The The India Today Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / redheadedrec
Photo Credit: Shriya Patil / The The India Today Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / redheadedrec

“Ceiling fans. I was afraid that it would come off the ceiling still spinning and chop me up like helicopter blades.”

Here’s the thing: if a ceiling fan flew out of its fixture, I think it really could be dangerous.

This Noise Was The Worst Part Of A VHS Tape

THX logo
Photo Credit: Reddit / SirSuch // Story Credit: Reddit / carmelacorleone
Photo Credit: Reddit / SirSuch // Story Credit: Reddit / carmelacorleone

“The THX sound effect that preceded most movies in the early 2000s. It always scared me as a kid. I listened to it last night and it still makes me uncomfortable. Not sure why.”

The Movies Made Creaky Floorboard So Ominous

Stripped floorboard
Photo Credit: David Potter / Construction Photography / Avalon / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Difference_in_Shades
Photo Credit: David Potter / Construction Photography / Avalon / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Difference_in_Shades

“Whenever the floorboards creaked, I imagined myself or my bed falling through the floor into the basement.”

Honestly, I am a fully grown adult male and I still feel uneasy when they floorboards creak.

I’d Say They’re More Tacky Than Terrifying

Plastic pink flamingos on lawn
Photo Credit: ROBERT SULLIVAN / AFP via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / kalooboo
Photo Credit: ROBERT SULLIVAN / AFP via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / kalooboo

“I was scared of lawn flamingos. My big sister told me that they could take your soul if you looked into their eyes, so I’d run past them with my eyes covered.”

But The Water Is Clear…

A hotel swimming pool in Palm Springs, California.
Photo Credit: Robert Alexander / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / ZigZagAlien
Photo Credit: Robert Alexander / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / ZigZagAlien

“For some reason, I believed there were sharks in the swimming pool. Could be 3 feet deep and I was still terrified Jaws was just gonna leave only my trunks floating in the water.”

It’s Like A Horrifying Waterslide!

Drain in White Bathtub
Photo Credit: GHI / Education Images / Universal Images Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / harlotScarlett
Photo Credit: GHI / Education Images / Universal Images Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / harlotScarlett

“I thought the bathtub drain would suck me down with the water.”

I like that this kid didn’t even consider the fact that their body was significantly wider than the hole and therefore couldn’t fall in.

Okay, But I Was Scared Of This Too

Watermelon with seeds
Photo Credit: Deb Lindsey / for The Washington Post via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Dizzeem
Photo Credit: Deb Lindsey / for The Washington Post via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Dizzeem

“I was terrified of accidentally swallowing seeds from fruits. I was told that they would grow and take over my insides and a tree would eventually burst out of me.”

I Thought I Was Going To Jail

The seal of the F.B.I.
Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Leonautus
Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Leonautus

“The FBI warning before movies.”

There was nothing like that anti-piracy warning before movies that made me feel like a criminal even though I had done nothing illegal. They were right, though: I would not steal a purse, but I definitely steal movies now.

Stay In Your Lane!

Swimming pool float lines
Photo Credit: Andia / Universal Images Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / boyvsfood2
Photo Credit: Andia / Universal Images Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / boyvsfood2

“That little rope of buoys that separated the deep end from the shallow end in the pool.”

I don’t know why the rope itself would be scary, but I understand being frightened of the deep end.

Watch Out For The Choppers!

helicopter flying overhead
Photo Credit: Joe Raedle / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Anonymous3642
Photo Credit: Joe Raedle / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Anonymous3642

“I was so scared of helicopters. I remember freaking out and crying every time I saw one. They were like sky spiders.”

Unfortunately, you can’t just get your dad to squish the helicopter and throw it out.

It Was Even Worse When The Escalator Was Fast

A view of an escalator
Photo Credit: Aurelien Meunier / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / jakerhamster
Photo Credit: Aurelien Meunier / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / jakerhamster

“Escalators terrified me—trying desperately to fit within a rectangle before it becomes a step and jumping off of them at the end to avoid being sucked down into oblivion. There were one or two anecdotal stories from the news that convinced me that they were, in fact, killers.”

You’d Have To Face That Fear A Lot

Dual Toilet being flushed
Photo Credit: Photofusion / John Birdsall / Universal Images Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / neuroticleporidae
Photo Credit: Photofusion / John Birdsall / Universal Images Group via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / neuroticleporidae

“The sound of the toilet flush. I would wash my hands first then flush and sprint out of the bathroom.”

I sincerely hope for this person’s sake that they never got the stomach flu.

Today On “Kids Don’t Understand Euphemisms”

Terry Fox, age 22, is running coast-to-coast across Canada on an artificial limb, after losing his right leg to cancer three years ago, in an effort to raise money to fight the killer disease.
Photo Credit: Bettmann / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Morosoro
Photo Credit: Bettmann / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Morosoro

“Terry Fox. In Canada, we have Terry Fox Day because this guy, Terry Fox, tried to run across the country on one leg to raise cancer awareness. My child-brain didn’t understand what cancer was and nobody would tell me anything more than ‘it’s what took Terry’s leg’. I assumed it was a person or something.

“So all I knew was that we were doing the Terry Fox Walk because a dead man with one leg said we should spread the word about Cancer who stole his leg and give him money. I was so scared that if I forgot to donate or if I missed the walk that Terry Fox’s ghost would come with whoever Cancer was and take my leg too.”

I Still Run Up The Stairs

Woman's hand turning off light switch
Photo Credit: H. Armstrong Roberts / Retrofile / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / bbob89
Photo Credit: H. Armstrong Roberts / Retrofile / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / bbob89

“The darkness of the basement terrified me. I’d turn off the lights and then immediately run up the stairs.”

I don’t care how old I get: there is something scary about a dark basement.

Disembowelment Via Belly Button Is An Awful Concept

belly button with ring
Photo Credit: Gregg DeGuire / WireImage // Story Credit: Reddit / lucy_lu_2
Photo Credit: Gregg DeGuire / WireImage // Story Credit: Reddit / lucy_lu_2

“I thought that the thing inside a belly button was a knot and I was terrified that it would come undone and all my insides would leak out. I wish I was making this up.”

Teddy Had To Be Sacrificed For The Greater Good

Teddy Bear, brown
Photo Credit: Jeff Overs / BBC News & Current Affairs via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / North-Country-House
Photo Credit: Jeff Overs / BBC News & Current Affairs via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / North-Country-House

“I was weirdly afraid that someone would stab me in the back in the night. I had a big stuffed bear I slept with on my back, his arms tucked under my armpits. He was Bagel and his job was to give his life for mine.”

Elton John Doesn’t Even Know His Impact

Elton John performs live
Photo Credit: Ian Gavan / Getty Images for Harlequins // Story Credit: Reddit / starryfaerie
Photo Credit: Ian Gavan / Getty Images for Harlequins // Story Credit: Reddit / starryfaerie

“I was really scared of the song ‘Tiny Dancer’ for a long time. Whenever I heard it, it reminded me of a black and white horror movie (lost to the depths of my memory) where this boy and girl were running through cornfields from something you couldn’t see.”

Today’s Kids Will Never About The Weird Glow

two young child watch television at home
Photo Credit: Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / deepsleepsheepmeep
Photo Credit: Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / deepsleepsheepmeep

“Old televisions right after you turned them off, they would glow for a bit. I believed that, during that time, the monsters could come out of the TV and get you.”

Maybe Don’t Take The Kid To Sports Games

Harry the Hawk, mascot of the Atlanta Hawks, dunks during a timeout in the game
Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / zennybooty
Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / zennybooty

“Mascots—the people that dress up in those costumes that are fuzzy and have giant heads TERRIFIED me. I would cling onto my dad and ball my eyes out.

“One time at an amusement park, a guy dressed up as Yogi Bear kept coming towards me despite my terrified screams, and my dad almost had to fight him.”

Monsters, Inc. Scarred So Many Kids

clothes and shoes are seen inside a closet
Photo Credit: David Vaaknin for The Washington Post via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / secretangelsquirrel1
Photo Credit: David Vaaknin for The Washington Post via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / secretangelsquirrel1

“I could not sleep with my closet door open. I saw way too many movies with scary things in the closet, so I figured a shut door guaranteed my safety. I was a weird kid.”

Why Were We All Afraid Of Quicksand?

man sunken to his knees in quicksand
Photo Credit: Bert Hardy / Picture Post / Hulton Archive / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / dmbcanddp
Photo Credit: Bert Hardy / Picture Post / Hulton Archive / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / dmbcanddp

“Quicksand.”

I’m not sure why, but so many movies and television shows made for children had the main character nearly perish in a pit of quicksand. I walked around every day in fear that I’d step into it.

There Are So Many Trees

close up of leaf
Photo Credit: Bernard Annebicque / Sygma / Sygma via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Bernard Annebicque / Sygma / Sygma via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit

“One of my biggest fears as a child was leaves. One came down out of a tree and hit me in the face when I was 3 years old and freaked me out.”

The Logic Is Pretty Sound

BLOND LITTLE GIRL SITTING ON CHAIR DRESSING HERSELF PULLING ON KNEE SOCK
Photo Credit: H. Armstrong Roberts / ClassicStock / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Suicunetobigaara
Photo Credit: H. Armstrong Roberts / ClassicStock / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / Suicunetobigaara

“I was afraid to not wear socks to bed. I thought a toe monster would grab them and pull them off, so wearing socks fooled it into thinking I didn’t have toes.”

Not Danny!

danny devito
Photo Credit: Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / sovietswitchboard
Photo Credit: Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / sovietswitchboard

“Danny Devito. Nobody knows where the fear came from, but my guess is the movie, Matilda.”

The funniest part is that Danny Devito is known as one of the kindest people in Hollywood.

Living Like A Fugitive Since Age 8

Wearing a peaked cap and small rucksack, a young adventurer, clambers over rocks
Photo Credit: In Pictures Ltd. / Corbis via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / North-Country-House
Photo Credit: In Pictures Ltd. / Corbis via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / North-Country-House

“I was terrified we’d suddenly have to run in the middle of the night—I never knew from what. I kept a ‘go bag’ under my bag with a change of clothes and underwear and shoes and some books and travel games and such. Other than the clothes, everything in the bag was useless.”

10:01 Was Okay, Though

Memorex Mini Alarm Clock Radio,
Photo Credit: Simon Lees / Tap Magazine via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / sylivas
Photo Credit: Simon Lees / Tap Magazine via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / sylivas

“The time 10:00 was terrifying to me for some reason. I had a digital clock in my room and every night, I asked my mom to flip the clock around so I wouldn’t have to see it. I don’t know why I was such a weird child.”

Tell Her Not To Watch The Movie Up!

A baloon-vendor in bavarian folk attire carries a bunch of helium baloons
Photo Credit: Philipp Guelland / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / ComplexFUBAR
Photo Credit: Philipp Guelland / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / ComplexFUBAR

“Not me, but my daughter was afraid of balloons. The floating freaked her out. She wasn’t afraid of them because of popping. She was especially scared if she saw a balloon that lost some of its helium and that would hover.”

I Would Have Wanted To Become A Wolf

the moon
Photo Credit: Dan Kitwood / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / PurpleVein99
Photo Credit: Dan Kitwood / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / PurpleVein99

“I was extremely scared of the moon. I had watched the ‘Thriller’ music video and was convinced that staring up at a full moon would turn me into a werewolf.”

It Would Be So Awful If It Worked That Way

students throwing papers out of windows
Photo Credit: VCG / VCG via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / nannybananas
Photo Credit: VCG / VCG via Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / nannybananas

“In second grade, someone dared me to eat a tiny piece of paper, so I did. I cried later that night because I thought I was going to get paper cuts on the inside of my stomach.”

Some Fears Never Leave

character baby doll with painted eyebrows
Photo Credit: DeAgostini / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / itsMondaybackwards
Photo Credit: DeAgostini / Getty Images // Story Credit: Reddit / itsMondaybackwards

“Porcelain dolls. I am 27-years-old now and still terrified.”

I genuinely fear any human who is not afraid of porcelain dolls. The way their eyes roll, their expressions—they are sick creations and anyone who can stand them is sick as well.