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15 Things That Have Terrified Kids Through the Ages

scary-15

What scared you as a kid? Do the same things scare you now?

It’s been interesting to talk to my kids about what they find most scary around Halloween. Even though they are growing up with cell phones and Facebook profiles, it’s the same good old-fashioned (sometimes downright medieval) creatures and entities that have scared kids for generations that still really get to my kids (and to me.)

Some things are so frightening that they’re timeless and have been causing nightmares for years.

What you are about to see isn’t something cute that you can pin and cross stitch later, unless you are seriously deranged. These are serious spooks with staying power. You are about to look upon the face of pure unadulterated evil. Do you dare?

 1. Evil Spirits

I was never afraid of ghosts in general. Casper was downright friendly, after all. But evil spirits? Those were the ones you had to watch out for. Whether they were Satan’s minions or simply avenging their own untimely deaths as independent contractors, you didn’t want to raise the wrath of one.

2. The Undead

I guess you’d call them zombies. Any corpse that reanimates sans soul is a pretty frightening prospect. Why? BECAUSE THEY’VE GOT NO SOUL. Also, they are known to crave brains, which is super sick.

3. Possessed Toys

The notion of your toys coming to life when you leave the room is only charming if Pixar is involved. In reality, this fear hits kids where they live. Shaved Barbies, armless dolls … anything antique or eyeless better not come to life in my house or I will seriously freak out and possibly go insane.

4. Werewolves

It wasn’t so much the actual werewolf, although you’d never want to pet one or anything. For me the horrifying thing about werewolves is the transformation of a man into a werewolf when the full moon comes out. The emerging claws, the fast-growing hair. Sometimes their skin roils and their spine lengthens. Yee-eee-iiikes!

5. Bloody Mary

Thankfully, none of my youthful attempts to summon Bloody Mary ever worked. But the possibility that she exists, that she is out there, that I might one day catch a glimpse of her in a mirror is really, really, scary. Bloody Mary seems kind of — oh, what’s the word? Hideous.

6. Ringwraiths

One ring to rule them all. One ring to find them. One ring to bring them all and IN THE DARKNESS BIND THEM. Gulp. I feel afraid.

7. Haunted Houses

The most frightening thing about haunted houses is that, really, the potential for horror is limitless: Ghosts could live there. The house itself could serve as a portal to hell. Serial killers could be squatting in the closets. The closets could eat you. Young or old, you don’t want to be involved with a haunted house in any way.

8. Crazy People with Chainsaws

I just asked my daughter what the scariest thing ever is. “Crazy people with chainsaws,” she said. All righty then. YES. A chainsaw is one thing — it can be dangerous. But if a madman is wielding it? Seriously not good.

9. Black Rubber Suits

I don’t like these. And I hope I am never abused by someone wearing one. However, the fact that you can buy one of these black rubber suits at Sears does demysitfy it a bit.

10. Creepy Children

You know what I’m talking about. They’re gaunt. They’re solemn. They have dark shadows under their eyes. Usually they are twins. I hate them so much. Have you SEEN The Shining?

11. Graveyards

Graveyards are scary, man. There are so many dead bodies there you have no idea if you’re going to run into evil spirits, the undead, or a clown hiding behind a tombstone waiting to kidnap you. This one is obvious, kids. STAY OUT.

12. Vampires

Before they were sexy, they were soul-sucking, cold blooded demons. Not exactly my type, friend. I was so scared of vampires as a kid but I took comfort knowing I could beat them with holy water, garlic, or wooden stakes. Kids don’t have access to any of those things though, which is troubling.

13. Kidnappers/Clowns

My biggest fear as a kid was kidnappers. My son’s is clowns. A clown who will kidnap you? I can’t even.

14. The Devil

Hands down, the most terrifying, formidable, evil villain is the prince of darkness. I’m talking about, of course, Satan. Hey Lucifer, I rebuke you. But seriously folks, if the devil said “boo” to me I would die. Literally.

15. The Unknown

The dark corner of the garage, the basement closet with no light, under the bed… there’s no telling what you’ll find there. Whatever you find is not going to cheerfully give you a bag of candy. Unless it’s John Wayne Gacy and, let’s be honest, it could be.

 
Read my blog, Every Day I Write the Book

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