When I was in kindergarten, my best friend at the time told me a story about someone who fell through those metal sidewalk cellar doors in the ground and died because no one knew she was there. Needless to say, I was haunted for life. And I didn't even grow up in New York City! I was in the suburbs, where there were no sidewalk cellar doors. But you better believe that every time I visited the city, I would avoid those like the plague. For years! And she probably made that story up! But I still think about it to this day.
When we are kids, we all have irrational fears that haunt us. Usually, they are based on a scary movie we accidentally saw a scene of before our parents changed the channel or something an adult said that we misinterpreted completely. Writer Dana Schwartz recently asked people to share the irrational fears they had as kids, and the answers are hilariously specific...and so incredibly irrational.
Dana herself started it off with an irrational fear of her own.The fear of being buried alive is very real and I understand it very deeply. I never considered the pill thing, though. I just thought someone would forcibly bury me knowing I was alive.
Cut fingersThere were so many urban legends that were so disturbing, and they all had to do with crazy, creepy people disturbing your limbs while you slept. Terrifying.
@DanaSchwartzzz After I saw Honey I Shrunk the Kids I became terrified that my loved ones had been shrunk, unbeknow… https://t.co/0gAREhe9VH— tyler feder (@tyler feder)1550504835.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I was POSITIVE that a witch (Yes specifically a witch) would kill me while I was on the toilet. At… https://t.co/zdiAdMREbD— Rachel Klein (@Rachel Klein)1550442736.0
Diving board accidentThis is so scary! It reminds me of that Shel Silverstein poem "Fancy Dive," which totally haunted me growing up. It's about "the fanciest dive that ever dove" and it was "done by Melissa of Coconut Grove." She did all these twists and turns and somersaults and then the very last line is that Melissa "looked down and saw that the pool had no water."
@DanaSchwartzzz My parents moving house while I was at school and forgetting to tell me about it. I’d go home to a… https://t.co/LNr36kUE4M— Neil Gaiman (@Neil Gaiman)1550457241.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I was terrified of crucifixion. On TV, Jesus hanging on a wall, my own. All of it. We weren’t even Catholic.— Quinn Sutherland (@Quinn Sutherland)1550442693.0
The Big One
@DanaSchwartzzz I grew up in Reno, Nevada, and was convinced that The Big One would break California into the ocean… https://t.co/e8R4awDnWQ— Alison Murray Whittington (@Alison Murray Whittington)1550504023.0
Suffocated in jello
@DanaSchwartzzz One time I discovered my basement was flooding in a bad storm. My dad told me to go back to bed cuz… https://t.co/rJ8mvh1Xbl— liam (@liam)1550463062.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I had a room in the basement where it was quite dark. I always had a fear that if I sneezed at nigh… https://t.co/7mVHW80b1f— Maddi (@Maddi)1550443926.0
@DanaSchwartzzz The Bermuda Triangle— badly-drawn bee 🐝 (@badly-drawn bee 🐝)1550442701.0
Elevators with pregnant women
@DanaSchwartzzz For too long I would not get in elevators with pregnant women. I was CONVINCED we would become trap… https://t.co/CSUqsSdEJZ— Alissa Helms, nauseously optimistic (@Alissa Helms, nauseously optimistic)1550444004.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I remember my mother saying that the assasinations of MLK and RFK made her fear for her children. O… https://t.co/kjy7YfXGZr— Doria Biddle (@Doria Biddle)1550538832.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I was scared that someone had invented invisible cars but I didn’t know about it yet so I couldn’t cross the street— Gabe (@Gabe)1550443075.0
Falling down the stairs
@DanaSchwartzzz That I would fall down the stairs in my elementary school gym and my head would smash open like a w… https://t.co/GhGSmkWbTJ— Kirt Ethridge (@Kirt Ethridge)1550444260.0
@DanaSchwartzzz Being kidnapped. And I'm just realizing how neurotic I was about it because I can remember making i… https://t.co/CyN4JI0X0r— JellicleKitten resolves to keep going (@JellicleKitten resolves to keep going)1550448617.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I used to cry whenever I saw the moon. Like, terrified screams. I called it "mooma". Just me, in th… https://t.co/TktktIByfd— tony ballgame ⚾🍻 (@tony ballgame ⚾🍻)1550445923.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I thought the dump truck was going to take my dog away. I had a very intense fear of dog catchers a… https://t.co/AflynL8Jmm— Noelle Stevenson (@Noelle Stevenson)1550443412.0
Anacondas under the bed
@DanaSchwartzzz I would check under my bed every night for anacondas. And I definitely didn’t have a plan for if I had found one.— Derek Lawrence (@Derek Lawrence)1550442869.0
Osama bin Laden
@DanaSchwartzzz I had this fear that Osama Bin Laden was hiding in the shed in my backyard. I think bc ppl were lik… https://t.co/WSZJkisReJ— jo (@jo)1550446821.0
RobbersThis is very strategic. The things we thought robbers would take... We were so misinformed. About so much.
@DanaSchwartzzz Quicksand. I'd never encountered it, but I just knew it was out there somewhere, waiting for me.— basia (@basia)1550443312.0
Pictures come to life
@DanaSchwartzzz That pictures would come to life whilst I was asleep. I had a copy of Smash Hits which had an adve… https://t.co/rhFQ5RrVuc— Lisa Campbell 🌈 (@Lisa Campbell 🌈)1550480193.0
@DanaSchwartzzz Walking on open-slatted stairs. I was convinced I would somehow fall through a step to my death.— Brian Boone (@Brian Boone)1550442715.0
@DanaSchwartzzz Pool sharks— cheerfulexgirlfriend (@cheerfulexgirlfriend)1550468884.0
@cheerful_ExGF @DanaSchwartzzz I should note that I spent a solid 5 years not being able to sleep without a blanket… https://t.co/pGdmeVfWBH— Ant Murdering She Devil (@Ant Murdering She Devil)1550469107.0
@DanaSchwartzzz Getting hit by a falling piano. I watched a lot of cartoons. 😂— Caroline in mid life💜💙💚💛🧡❤️ (@Caroline in mid life💜💙💚💛🧡❤️)1550442583.0
@DanaSchwartzzz I thought my mother had listening devices in my lunchbox/backpack & would not just bust me for sayi… https://t.co/ieqFsG7H9B— Caissie (@Caissie)1550462507.0