As comfortable as many of us are in our day-to-day lives, all it takes is one unsettling encounter to remind us that the world is a truly scary place. From brushes with unexplained phenomena to moments that would terrify even the strongest among us, creepy experiences tend to stay with people even long after they end. So keep your lights on while reading these 50 unforgettable stories about the creepiest experiences ordinary people have ever had!
1. Guess Again
When I was seven, I woke up in the middle of the night with an earache. I decided to tell my mom and stepdad about it, so I walked out of my room—and saw something that filled me with dread. Someone was sitting on the chair in the living room about three feet away from my bedroom door. The person looked strange. The face was just kind of distorted. But it was dark and I couldn’t see well.
“Mom?” I asked. The person shook their head, and I started getting scared. “Mike?” The person shook their head again. I decided the best course of action was to go back to bed so I wouldn’t have to walk past this person. I climbed in bed and closed my eyes for a second, before opening them and seeing the person standing in my doorway, smiling madly and nodding furiously.
I screamed at the top of my lungs and closed my eyes. My stepdad came running out of his room in his underwear with a baseball bat. That was a scary sight in itself. When the lights came on, there was no one there. For the longest time, I told myself it was my cat, sitting on a pile of my clothes.
2. Black Magic
My dad passed from cancer the day I turned 16 after about two weeks in a coma. It was really fast. There was a total of less than two months between diagnosis and his passing. He passed in the house. We had a hospice attendant and my mom was very good about seeing to him in those final days. Anyway, a lot of weird things happened after he passed.
But one thing that happened still freaks me out to this day. It happened about twelve hours before he took to bed for the last time. He was in our living room napping on the couch while my mom was in the kitchen cooking. No one else was home. Suddenly, he jerked awake and was shouting for my mom in a very loud, agitated voice. Clearly angry with her.
“Beverly! Don’t do that! Don’t EVER do that again!” She ran into the room, alarmed, and asked what he was talking about. And, without any explanation, he simply said, “Don’t do that. Don’t walk past me like that in that long, black wig.” Sometimes I think he saw the grim reaper. It was the eeriest thing I’ve ever experienced.
3. Smile, Though Your Heart Is Aching
About five years ago, I lived downtown in a major city in the United States. I’ve always been a night person, so I would often find myself bored after my roommate, who was decidedly not a night person, went to sleep. To pass the time, I used to go for long walks and spend the time thinking. I spent four years like that, walking alone at night, and never once had a reason to feel afraid.
I always used to joke with my roommate that even the dealers in the city were polite. But all of that changed in just a few minutes one evening. It was a Wednesday, somewhere between one and two in the morning, and I was walking near a heavily patrolled park, quite a ways from my apartment. It was a quiet night, even for a weeknight, with very little traffic and almost no one on foot.
The park, as on most nights, was completely empty. I turned down a short side street in order to loop back to my apartment—that’s when I first noticed him. At the far end of the street, on my side, was the silhouette of a man, dancing. It was a strange dance, similar to a waltz, but he finished each “box” with an odd forward stride. I guess you could say he was dance-walking, headed straight for me.
Deciding he was probably intoxicated, I stepped as close as I could to the road to give him the majority of the sidewalk to pass me by. The closer he got, the more I realized how gracefully he was moving. He was very tall and lanky, and wearing an old suit. He danced closer still, until I could make out his face. His eyes were open wide and wild, head tilted back slightly, looking off at the sky—but that’s not what scared me.
His mouth was formed in a painfully wide cartoon of a smile. It was so unsettling. Between the eyes and the smile, I decided to cross the street before he danced any closer. I took my eyes off of him to cross the empty street. As I reached the other side, I glanced back…and then stopped in my tracks. He had stopped dancing and was standing with one foot in the street, perfectly parallel to me.
He was facing me but still looking skyward. Smile still wide on his lips. I was completely and utterly unnerved by this. I started walking again, but kept my eyes on the man. He didn’t move. Once I had put about half a block between us, I turned away from him for a moment to watch the sidewalk in front of me. The street and sidewalk ahead of me were completely empty.
Still unnerved, I looked back to where he had been standing to find him gone. For the briefest of moments, I felt relieved, until I noticed him again. He had crossed the street and was now slightly crouched down. I couldn’t tell for sure due to the distance and the shadows, but I was certain that he was facing me. I had looked away from him for no more than ten seconds, so it was clear that he had moved fast.
I was so shocked that I stood there for some time, staring at him. And then he started moving toward me again. He took giant, exaggerated, tip-toed steps, as if he were a cartoon character sneaking up on someone. Except he was moving very, very quickly. I’d like to say at this point I ran away or pulled out my pepper spray or my cell phone, or anything at all, but I didn’t. I couldn’t move.
I just stood there, completely frozen as the smiling man crept toward me. And then he stopped again, about a car length away from me. Still smiling his smile, still looking to the sky. When I finally found my voice, I blurted out the first thing that came to mind. What I meant to ask was, “What do you want?!” in an angry, commanding tone. What came out was a whimper, “What the fuu…?”
Regardless of whether or not humans can smell fear, they can certainly hear it. I heard it in my own voice, and that only made me more afraid. But he didn’t react to it at all. He just stood there, smiling. And then, after what felt like forever, he turned around, very slowly, and started dance-walking away. Just like that. Not wanting to turn my back to him again, I just watched him go, until he was far enough away to almost be out of sight.
And that’s when I made a horrifying realization. He wasn’t moving away anymore, nor was he dancing. I watched in horror as the distant shape of him grew larger and larger. He was coming back my way. And this time he was running. I ran too. I ran until I was off of the side road and back onto a better-lit road with sparse traffic. Looking behind me then, he was nowhere to be found.
The rest of the way home, I kept glancing over my shoulder, always expecting to see his creepy smile, but he was never there. I lived in that city for six months after that night, and I never went out for another walk. There was something about his face that always haunted me. He didn’t look intoxicated, and he didn’t look high. He looked completely and utterly insane. And that’s a very, very scary thing to see.
4. Four Goodness Sake
I was in Taiwan one year when I was younger, and had traveled to a busy night market. These are popular gatherings of food and shop stalls that usually operate in the evening. Nearby, I spotted a sign for a net cafe in a five or six-story tall building. Thinking I’d fire off some quick emails, I walked in through the dark, small entrance of the building.
The building was older and hadn’t been well maintained, but it’s not out of the ordinary in Taiwan. The entrance just had a dark hallway that led to a small elevator. I pressed the elevator call button and entered. The elevator was uncharacteristically new compared to the building, but I didn’t think much of it. Like some Chinese and Taiwanese buildings, there wasn’t a fourth floor.
The number four is considered bad luck in that culture, so it just read 1-2-3-5-6, which was usual. I looked for the floor the net cafe was at, which was the sixth. I pressed the button. It lurched into action quietly and began the ascent. When it stopped, I figured it was my floor, so I instinctively began to step out. Right before stepping out, however, what I saw outside the elevator stopped me.
It was pitch black, only lit by the light in the elevator. It looked like it hadn’t been occupied for decades, with some random pieces of furniture covered with white cloth or similar things. It was a small building, so each floor was single occupancy. I could see pretty much the entire floor from the elevator. Thinking I must have gotten the wrong floor, I checked the light that indicates which floor you’re on.
Strangely, there was nothing. None of the indicators were on, but the floor button to the net cafe was still lit so I knew I hadn’t gotten there yet. All this happened within a couple of seconds. That’s when I noticed a figure moving in the distance of the floor. It was not very visible, but I could make out what looked like a person dressed in some kind of gown, moving slowly towards the elevator, where I was.
I was thoroughly creeped out, so I started pressing the close door button. As soon as I pressed it, the elevator light flickered off and I was in pitch-black darkness. I was very close to peeing my pants, and it’s actually kind of freaking me out thinking back to it. The lights flickered back on a few seconds later, and the door closed. The elevator jolted back to life.
A few moments later, it opened again to the net cafe. I was beyond relieved at this point. I walked out immediately and sat down at a computer. After gathering my wits a bit, I walked over to the cashier’s desk and told them what I saw. The girl working there listened. Her reaction was chilling. Her face turned a bit ashen, so I asked her if she heard of something similar.
She told me that she’s never experienced it, but some coworkers and occasional customers have brought it up. Basically, the building has six floors, and the fourth floor had a history. Apparently, the floor used to be a hair salon of sorts, until one of the employees took her own life there for some reason. She slit her wrists over the hair wash station.
The store continued operations despite stories of weird appearances. When customers got their hair rinsed, the water would look a little red, like the customer was bleeding. Little things like that. And a couple of people reported seeing someone’s figure walking away in the mirror, but wouldn’t see anyone when they turned to check. Naturally, the business closed down a few months later.
The building owner tried to re-rent the place out, but never had any luck. Most businesses are quite superstitious, and no one wanted to rent the fourth floor after someone had lost their life on it, even at a very cheap price. Finally, after dropping the price to nearly nothing, a stationary supplies store wanted to rent. During the renovations of the floor, however, several accidents happened.
Tools would end up in strange places, a mirror from the previous business shattered when no one was near it, and finally, a worker had his hand jammed between the elevator doors when it closed on him unexpectedly. The workers refused to continue working and, finally, the business left and the building owner gave up and shut down the floor.
He then had the elevator company come in to replace the panel so that the elevator could not go to the fourth floor. Let me repeat that. The elevator was programmed to never go to the fourth floor. It doesn’t even have a button. But for some reason, sometimes when people take the elevator, it would go to the fourth floor and the doors would open, and some, like myself, would see a figure walking around in the dark.
5. Bed, Bath, and Beyond
I was once in a hot tub with some friends late at night, and we were all telling some stories. One of the guys told us this one. It was the story of a girl he knows. I’m not 100% sure if it’s true, but multiple people in the hot tub who knew her verified it was true. So one day, this girl was called over to babysit. She did it a lot for these people, so it was routine for her.
Anyways, she was told to put the kids to bed at 9:00, and she did. After she put them to bed, she started watching TV and doing homework, waiting for the parents to come home. But then, she started hearing some noises coming out of the basement, like pans falling and stuff. She just ignored it and thought it was the washing machine or something.
Anyways, a little later, she starts hearing the noises again. She decides to call the authorities and tell them she was hearing noises coming out of the basement at the house she’s babysitting at. The lady at the station told her there’s a patroller in her area, and that he’ll be at the house in about 20 minutes. Anyways, in about five minutes, she hears a knock on the door.
When she answers, she’s shocked. It’s a full SWAT team. She asked, “I thought they were just sending a patroller.” One of the guys told her: “After you hung up the phone, we heard a second phone on the line hang up.” It turns out there was a man in the basement, listening to the conversation. The lady in the station waited and heard him hang up, then immediately sent the swat team to help.
They went downstairs and caught him. He was wanted for multiple serious offenses.
6. A Scarring Memory
One of the scariest things I ever heard was when I worked in retail. My store used to do layaway and that was where I worked. Right by the layaway counter, we had three bathrooms—a men’s multi-stall, a women’s multi-stall, and a family bathroom. Well, only the family bathroom had a door that locked. All the others had a push-and-pull swing door.
I was in the back cleaning up and I thought I heard screaming, so I walked out front by the counter. I heard more screaming. I was not sure at first where it was coming from. I ran and checked the men’s and women’s bathrooms and they were empty. But I still heard the crying and screaming. I made a terrifying realization. It was coming from the locked family bathroom.
I banged on the door but the yelling, screaming, and crying kept going on. It sounded like a child and I had no idea what was going on. I called for a manager because I had no way of getting in the door since it was locked. This whole time there is still crying, screaming, and banging. After several attempts of trying to open the door, we called for a rescue crew.
We had no idea what we were getting into, but it didn’t sound good. I think it had been about 15 minutes at this point, although it felt like forever. Then the sound just stopped. No more banging or crying. Nothing. We banged on the door until the authorities came. When they finally did, they had to kick the door in since we had no key.
As we all stood around and looked in, it was absolutely horrifying. All we saw was blood all over the place. We were not really sure what happened at first, but the officers told us to back up. That is when they pulled out a lady and a child. A bloody child, maybe three years old. We all just stood there in shock. The child was not moving. We all thought he was deceased because of all the blood.
They took the lady away in handcuffs and the child to the hospital. We all had to give statements. Later, my manager told me what had happened. She just snapped. The kid wouldn’t stop crying and she just had enough and did whatever she could to make him stop. He did survive. I was sure he was a goner, but he wasn’t. She had just knocked him out from hitting him so hard.
For that to happen right behind the door and not know what is going on or be able to help was pretty scary to me.
7. A Beautiful Night In The Neighborhood
One morning last December, around 4:00 AM, I wake up to a piercing, shrill, alarm-like noise. In a panic, I jump out of bed thinking it might be a phone or my car alarm or something. But as I was trying to locate the origin of the noise, I realized it didn’t change frequency or volume regardless of where I was in the house.
There was no point of origin as far as I could tell with my semi-conscious brain. So I’m stumbling around in complete darkness with a tiny flashlight, when I think to myself “How stupid am I?! I just did the cliché horror film thing and started walking around in the dark instead of turning on the lights!” So I find the light switch. Click…click…click! CLICK! CLICK! It doesn’t work!!
I look outside. The whole neighborhood’s pitch black. No street lights, no cars, nothing. I grab the phone. There’s no signal. I find my mobile and call a friend. They don’t pick up, probably because it was 4:00 in the freaking morning!! However, my twisted brain led me to the conclusion that something awful had happened.
So there I am, the shrill noise is still there in the background, I’m standing in complete darkness, and perhaps the sleep deprivation combined with the rush of adrenaline caused by my immense fear led me to the notion that the end of the world had arrived. I thought that whatever’s happening didn’t matter. The adrenaline was wearing off and I felt exhausted and pretty down in general.
So I slinked off back to bed, falling asleep thinking I’d rather pass peacefully in my sleep than fully aware of imminent emptiness and darkness. That day, I found out our power had been cut in the night, which set off a neighbor’s home security system. He wasn’t home to turn it off, which explains the lack of electricity and the awful noise.
8. Special Delivery
I’m a FedEx delivery driver. About three years ago, while delivering medicine to a trailer park in Las Vegas, I encountered a man I’ll never forget. I had to obtain a signature, so I knocked on the door. Out came an old, tall, balding man with a yellow crust building up on his goatee. The first thing he says to me is, “Don’t take this the wrong way, but you look like you would be delicious.”
I give him a nervous grin and make small talk. He realized how nervous I got and started calling me Prince Charming. Never again did I deliver directly to him, but I would see him around when delivering to neighboring homes.
9. Sounding Off
In the middle of the summer two years ago, I was sleeping in my bed peacefully when I heard the loudest thunder I’ve ever heard in my life. Normally, I am not afraid of thunder. But this time my entire house shook as if it was a huge earthquake. I shake it off and go back to sleep. No big deal. The next thing I knew, I was jolted awake by a flash of bright purple lightning and the loudest thunder that Zeus could possibly create.
Then I started to hear the screams. It seemed as if outside my window was a choir of demented Satan-spawned creatures screeching in cries of agony. As I laid in bed terrified, I thought to myself “This is actually happening. I can hear them. This is how it ends.” Later, I found out that the screams were just a pack of foxes that were scared by the intense lightning, but still. That was some scary stuff right there.
10. Window Shopping
I was about 15 minutes from finishing the night shift at work when there was a massive crash on one of the windows in the office. So I get up and go to check it out. Someone has thrown quite a sizable rock through one of the windows on the front of the building. This is made especially weird because I’m working in the industrial district at 11:30 at night, with none of the other businesses in the area open.
I go back to my desk, put a quick call through to security to let them know, and decide to head home. As I’m leaving the building, I’m freaking myself out about it more and more. I end up running to my car, getting in, and taking off. I’m almost home and I’ve started to calm down a bit when I make a disturbing realization. I hadn’t unlocked my car when I got in back at work.
It had been unlocked the whole time. I do a quick check with my hand in the backseat for any possible creeps that might be hanging around there, but there’s nothing there. Fast forward 30 minutes. I’ve called a friend of mine who says he is out drinking. So I decide I’m going to join him. I jump on my bicycle and start riding over.
I’m doodling along the road on my bike. It’s a nice night and I’m in no big rush. I’m just enjoying the moonlight when I hear someone riding behind me. I straighten up and stick to one side of the road. He passes me really slowly and, when he is right beside me, he shoots me a smile I can only describe as purely insane. I kind of flinch and am taken aback as he rides on.
All of a sudden, sheer terror washes over my body. I realize he is riding my mom’s bike. Needless to say, I sprinted the heck home. When I got there, sure enough, her bike was missing and one of my car’s doors was open. The back left one. I was driving, and had no need to open that door.
11. A House Divided Against Itself
I house sit for a family friend when she goes out of town. The woman who lives there is really into a bunch of spiritual stuff. I mean new age stuff, like reiki, etc. The very first time I was housesitting, I was outside watering the plants. I was the only one there and had closed the door after me. From the driveway where I was watering, I had a completely unobstructed view of the front door.
That was the only door that was unlocked at the time. When I went back inside, there, on the little table next to the front door was a half-eaten cookie. The table had been completely clear when I went outside and I hadn’t seen cookies that looked like that anywhere in the house. Nothing too creepy, but very puzzling and unsettling.
When the woman returns, I mention it to her. She laughs and says she “gets ghosts all the time.” I’m a fairly skeptical person, but honestly, ghosts were the best explanation. The next time I was over, I was on the toilet around 10:30 at night. The house itself is fairly old and creeks from time to time, but nothing too loud or disruptive.
While I was on there, there came a single loud knock from the other side of the bathroom door. This wasn’t a little creek or pop from the house or from someone outside. It was a loud, determined rap on the door. It was enough to scare me off the porcelain throne for the rest of the night.
12. Climb Every Mountain
About a year ago, I was climbing a tree in my front yard at around 4:30 in the morning. I had walked a lady friend to her car and was chilling until I got the “I’m home” text. The weather was nice for tree climbing, so I just did it. This particular night, my neighbors didn’t lock their gate like they normally do, leaving easy access to their tool shed, lawnmower, etc.
I guess the guy forgot. It happens, but it was definitely noticeable. It was a large gate, right next to the road, with a bunch of expensive old man tools right behind it. So, as I observed the gate from my lofty perch and considered all of the reasons it might be open, I noticed a car coming down my street very slowly, eventually coming to a halt right in front of my neighbor’s driveway.
I looked into the car and saw two young men pointing and looking intently around his yard. Sketchy stuff during daylight, but much more so at night. After a minute or so of being too nervous to do anything at all, I realized I was leaning pretty heavily on some branches, exposing myself more than when these two had just driven up. That was when it happened.
The guy in the passenger seat noticed me first. He did a panicky sort of double-take when he first saw me, followed by what I generally assume to be the words “OH NO!”, and rapidly punching the driver in the arm. Attempting to look menacing, I did the only thing I could think of which was to hold my arms up in a claw-like pose, like an angry tree-rex.
When the driver saw me, he did the same panicky double-take before slamming the gas and hauling outta there as fast as he could. I like to think I was the creepiest thing those two ever saw.
13. There’s No Place Like Home
My parents bought their first house back in 1972. It was a fixer-upper, but they decided to move in right away and fix things as time and money permitted. Within a few days of moving in, the new neighbors came over to introduce themselves. They also let my parents know that the previous owners had moved out after a nasty divorce.
They had lost their second baby from an illness, and their relationship went downhill from there. My parents were horrified, more so because they were newly pregnant and couldn’t imagine going through such a thing. They eventually pretty much forgot all about it. Life went on. They were in love with their new life and their new house.
In preparation for the baby, they decided to wallpaper the nursery. Now, my dad told my mom there was no need for wallpapering the inside of the closet, but she insisted. She was kneeling down, scraping off old paint inside of the closet when her eyes fell upon something that made her blood turn to ice.
Written in crayon, at about eye level for a kindergartner, in childish scrawl were the words: “I KILLED THE BABY.”
14. Tuning In
As a kid, I was playing around with a radio once, just slowly spanning through the static trying to find a station. I had found an old television antenna, attached it to the side of our house, and ran a wire out my window to it with an alligator clip attached to the radio antenna, allowing me to get a way broader range of signals.
So I’m sitting there, middle of the night, slowly sweeping frequencies, and suddenly I get to this station that’s playing this very weird crackling sound. It sounded sort of like cracking knuckles, or maybe Rice Krispies cereal, but with a fixed, rhythmic pattern instead of being random. I sat there listening to it for a second. Then it suddenly stopped and I heard something bone-chilling. This faint voice said: “It doesn’t work. We’re already gone. We’re already gone.”
It took a second for the weight of the words to hit me, but when they did I freaked the heck out and almost threw the radio across the room. I’m pretty sure it was just someone messing around with a radio transmitter, but it sure scared the heck out of me at the time.
15. Curtains For You
When me and my mom moved to a new house, she had some redecorating to do. One of the things she wanted to change was to get some new curtains for our bathroom. The curtains in there were torn, dirty, browned, and just ugly. So she bought some new curtains. As she is quite short, she can’t reach our attic, which is where she wanted to store the old curtains.
I put the old curtains into a box, then put them into the attic. The new curtains went up. All was good. The next day, when I came home from school, the horrible, dirty curtains were back up in the bathroom. The new curtains were nowhere to be seen. I asked my mom why she had changed the curtains back over. Her reaction was terrifying. She had no idea how it happened.
Still bothers me to this day.
16. The Man In The Mirror
When I was about eight or nine years old, my mom’s friends took us to see the puppy they were going to buy. The owner offered us to walk the parent-dogs. They were two Rottweilers, and I remember their names to this day. They were super friendly and walked off-leash with the two kids of my mom’s friend, and myself.
When we arrived in a grassy area surrounded by trees, a tall guy approached us. He grabbed my shoulder and the dogs went completely nuts. I remember he had a mirror and tried shining light into the dog’s eyes. The mother dog stayed circling me while I ran to the house and the other dog chased after this guy until he was gone.
It was terrifying, but what really sticks with me is that those dogs didn’t know me from before, yet they protected me and my friends as if their lives depended on it.
17. Standing Ovation
When I was around 20, we had this weird neighbor that we didn’t think about too much. One night, I was awake at 2:00 AM and noticed out my window that I could see the reflection of a fire. So I went into the completely dark living room and peeked through the window to make sure it wasn’t someone’s house. It was the neighbor, with a bonfire in his driveway.
He was just standing with his back to the fire, staring directly at me. Now, I hadn’t made a sound or anything. There is no way he heard or saw me coming. He was just staring directly at me. So being completely freaked out, I went to bed and couldn’t fall asleep because I was convinced he was going to hurt me. About half an hour later, I hear crunching, and I’m like, “It’s probably just a raccoon in the driveway.”
Then I hear the clapping. I look out from my window to the driveway, and there he is standing in my gravel driveway, clapping, and staring directly into my bedroom window.
18. En Route
My friend was taking a scenic route in the middle of the night to get to a certain town. He was driving up a hill, and came upon a car accident with two cars on the side of the road and a person lying down on the ground. For some reason, he caught a bad vibe from it and slowly drove past the scene. He stopped about 100 feet past it and looked behind him. What he saw was horrifying.
The person on the ground was standing up and staring at him. As if that wasn’t terrifying enough, there were about 20 other people coming out of the woods. Nope.
19. Late Night Snack
My parents were out one night, and my brother and I were home alone. We were probably 12 and 10 at the time, respectively. Anyway, there’s a knock at the door and I hear a voice say “Pizza.” Initially thinking it was my father playing a joke, I instinctively went to open the door. That’s when I made a disturbing realization. It wasn’t my dad’s voice.
“We didn’t order any pizza,” I said. There was no reply and no audible movement. I went to my bathroom window, which allows some vision of the footpath leading from the front of our property to the front door, but you can’t see the door itself from there. So we waited for about 15 minutes, clutching a cricket bat and some ornamental fireplace poker until finally the dude moves away from the door and walks away.
Just some guy with dark hair in a long ponytail, a long dark coat…and no pizza.
20. A Body At Rest
When I was in high school, these four girls went to a concert in a city that was a five-hour drive away. They tried to get a hotel room after, but they were too young and were denied, so they had to drive all the way home. About 20 minutes away from making it home, the driver fell asleep at the wheel, and the car rolled. One of the girls lost her life.
A couple of days later, the girl’s parents invited a bunch of us over to their house. When I went to her room, I nearly passed out. We were shocked to see they had her body laying in her bed.
21. Door Man
This happened to me when I was about eight years old, and it still scares me to this day. One evening, I went to let my dogs in from the back garden at around 9:00 PM. It was pitch black so I quickly opened the door and my dogs came bounding in. As soon as they came in, I locked the door and, at this moment, a person on the other side pulled the handle down trying to get into my house.
We had a glass door, so even in the dark, I could see the outline of a man standing there. I ran to my dad and he ran into the back garden after this man. He saw him running down the road. Since then, I have closed and locked doors at the speed of light.
22. Night Of The Hunter
My old co-worker had a son who was in his mid-30s, and he had a son of his own named Hunter who was four or five years old. She said that Hunter would have bad dreams and that he would sleep with his dad when he got scared. One night, his dad woke up because he heard Hunter calling him. But he was calling him by his name, not “dad.”
So he went to his room and he was asleep. He woke him up and said “Hunter, you were calling me. Is everything okay?” Hunter’s reply was chilling. He said, “Dad, when they call you you’re not supposed to answer.” He then fell back asleep. His dad asked him about it in the morning, but he said he didn’t remember saying it. I get chills when I think about this.
23. An Urgent Call
One morning at about 1:00 AM, I got a phone call from my little sister’s cell. She lived a time zone away to the east, so it was 2:00 AM there. It woke me up, and I immediately sensed that something was wrong. I picked up the phone and groggily said “Hello?” when I heard a muffled woman’s voice—possibly my sister’s—say, “Please, help me.”
She sounded terrified and desperate. I immediately thought I was having a Taken moment. I figured my sister was being kidnapped, and she had found some way to quickly call me for help. I didn’t know what to do. Should I hang up and call the authorities? Should I yell into the phone? Should I keep listening and try to pick up some kind of relevant information?
I really wished I had one of those fancy phone recording devices that the Taken guy had right then. I opted to keep listening. As I did, I occasionally heard muffled yelling and screaming, much to my horror. Her phone must have been hidden away pretty well. Then, something strange happened. I heard what was clearly my sister’s voice, also muffled, but completely calm.
I didn’t hear what she said, but it was a very casual, conversational tone. Then I noticed for the first time that there was also scary music along with the yelling and stuff in the background. Turns out my sister had pocket dialed me while watching a horror movie…
24. Singing In The Shower
I woke up one night around 1:00 in the morning and heard the shower was on. I first thought it was my brother. He works night shifts, so I figured he had come home late and was in the shower. It went on for about half an hour until I got up and went to see what the heck he was doing. No one was in the shower, and my brother wasn’t home yet. I was the only one in the house.
Still to this day, I have no idea how it turned on or who did it. Almost five years later, I still think about it and nearly poop myself. Even writing this now, I feel like turning every light on in the house. Whyyy do I do this to myself??!!
25. The Sound Of Music
I occasionally hear faint music in my house. It’s usually when I’m alone or very early in the morning. I hear it from the A/C vent, or from somewhere in my kitchen or laundry room. I can’t figure out where it comes from. I thought it might be a radio we packed away somewhere, but it would need to be plugged in or have batteries. But the batteries would have run out at some point.
We don’t have outlets that high. I am partially convinced someone is secretly living in the attic, but nothing is missing or damaged, and the dogs don’t act weird.
26. Room Service
I went to see The Sixth Sense with my wife when it first came out. We had just moved into our new house, and my wife was pretty shaky when we came home. We didn’t have kids at this point. She insisted that I go through all of the rooms in the house to check for… who knows what. Being a dutiful husband, I eyerolling-ly went through all of the bedrooms and was finishing up in the guest bathroom.
The door was ajar, and I pushed it open. Then, I heard, right next to my head, the loudest, most blood-curdling scream ever. Turns out that the cat was behind the door and somehow had its tail in the jamb. And when I opened it, it got pinched. Heck, man.
27. Down On The Farm
I was buying a house last year, and one of the places I decided to look at was a renovated farmhouse. The main building itself was pretty nice and I was considering it as an option, but then the realtor took me to check out the old barn that was on the property. From the outside, it looked like it could be converted into a really nice workshop.
I walked inside and almost immediately felt something fall on my head. I brushed it away and did the “get it off me” dance until it fell to the ground. It was a tiny spider. Then another dropped on my head. I repeated my freak-out and got another, larger spider out of my hair. Then, I made the mistake of looking up. There was a huge black spot on the wall, which I realized after my eyes focused was the biggest cluster of spiders I have ever seen in my life.
In that moment, I was a faster sprinter than Usain Bolt.
28. Blood Brothers
The scariest thing happened to me in an old house I used to rent back in 2008. I came home from work one day and heard a bloodcurdling scream come from my crawl space. The entrance to my crawl space was in my coat closet in the foyer. The hatch to get in was still shut, but there was a trail of blood leading up to it, and bloody scratch marks all over it.
I knew there was nobody else in the house because my roommate was in Atlanta on a business trip all week. No idea how that happened…
29. Lending A Hand
I just moved into this house a year ago. There are child-sized handprints on one of my bathroom walls. Permanent handprints that you can only see from a certain angle, like what water exposure does to paint. The previous owners have no idea what I’m talking about when I bring it up to them, and I don’t have any idea how they got there.
30. A Plague Of Biblical Proportions
Decades ago, on a road outside Midland, Michigan, thousands upon thousands of frogs went to end their own lives. Cars slid through this green and red mass like they had hit a patch of black ice. Cars were in the ditch with a 200-meter trail of frog carcasses behind them. It was chaos. When I got home, my mud flaps were liberally caked with amphibian bodily fluids. Why were all those frogs in the middle of the road?
31. They’ve Got It In The Bag
Living in the Northern part of Mexico, the battles between the cartels were very intense in the city where I lived a couple of years ago. I was waiting to cross the street when I saw a big truck dumping out a plastic bag that happened to contain a dismembered body. The worst part is that nobody did anything about it. I just waited for the light to change and ran like crazy.
32. A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words
Someone I barely knew once said to me: “The photo of you that will be used at your funeral has already been taken.” That was one of the creepiest moments of my life.
33. Come Sail Away
The wire on a boat’s cable broke and whipped around. Two sailors lost their lives and two lost limbs in the incident. Getting to the scene seconds after was the most horrific sight I have ever witnessed. As long as I live, I will never be able to forget the feeling of using a mop and pail to swab up the puddles of human blood. It was heart-wrenching.
34. Trailing Behind
I used to work in a trailer park for my parents. Quite often, people would start using controlled substances, begin to fall behind on rent, and get evicted. Whenever we evicted someone, their trailer was usually too torn up to actually do anything useful with it. Essentially, to prevent having a pile o’ garbage trailer in the middle of the park, we’d buy it from them and just tear it down.
Anyway, here comes the creepy part. Many of these occupants had children. More than half of the children’s rooms I found had locks on the doors, from the outside. Inside the children’s rooms, it was always quite evident that the kids would sometimes be locked inside for days at a time, due to the “bathroom” corners that would sometimes appear.
It gets even more disturbing. The doors on the insides of the rooms typically had scratch marks along the edge of the door and the door frame. Getting rid of all of the stuff inside before beginning demolition always frightened me. I was always afraid that I’d end up finding a deceased child somewhere among the filth. It never happened, but the odds of it potentially happening were, in my opinion, quite high.
35. A Close Bond
I was babysitting my niece Sophie one Friday night while my brother-in-law took his wife to dinner. She has a strict bedtime of 8:00 PM, so after successfully getting her to sleep—which was no small task—I decided I would watch the Skyfall movie that people wouldn’t shut up about. About halfway into the movie, I am absolutely chilled to the bone.
Sophie (who snuck out of bed and behind the couch) says directly into my ear, mere inches away, “You know James Bond killed Jesus, right?” I haven’t offered to watch her again.
36. Birds Of A Feather
I saw this little bird walking on the street when suddenly a seagull grabbed it in its mouth. The seagull started to smash this helpless bird against the ground a few times. After a while, it ate the bird. I then saw a bump on the seagull’s neck, like the bird was stuck in its throat. Then it flew off. I was just standing there and said: “What the heck? Seagulls shouldn’t do that.”
37. Taking Them For A Ride
Just last year, I was in New York City and riding a packed subway. Mid-ride, a man gets up with a strangely large backpack. He cleared his throat and said something so disturbing, it’s unforgettable. He said: “Alright everyone, the time has come.” At that moment, the people on the subway’s faces turned to utter fear. A mother nestled her son, and I tensed up, ready to pounce. None of us knew what was coming next.
He went on to say “I am a poor man in need of food. If anyone has anything on them or if they could take me out for food, it would save my life.” My girlfriend and I got him some KFC and asked him to approach a large group of people differently. All in all, he was a nice guy. Didn’t even look homeless. My girlfriend still refers to it as “The day the KFC guy was gonna destroy us.”
38. Putting A Ring On It
Back in 2003, I was watching The Ring at 2:00 in the morning. As soon as the main character finished watching the cursed tape, my phone rang. I picked it up, but there was no one on the line. I stopped watching the movie at that point. That remains one of the creepiest moments that I ever remember experiencing in my entire life.
39. Bad Chemistry
I heard this creepy story and it’s always stayed with me. Essentially, Karen Wetterhahn was a chemistry professor at Dartmouth. She was working with an organic mercury compound that was relatively unknown at the time. A drop spilled on her gloved hand. No big deal, usually. Turns out dimethylmercury penetrates latex gloves really quickly, and a drop on the hand is a life-threatening sentence.
She slipped into a coma about six months later and then passed. The really terrifying part is the description of her coma. One of her former students described it as not being “the kind of coma I’d expected.” Apparently, she was thrashing about. Her husband saw tears rolling down her face. I asked if she was in pain. The doctors said it didn’t appear that her brain could even register pain.
Absolutely terrifying. I am so glad I’m not a chemist.
40. Life Is A Highway
I once happened upon an accident on the highway right as the first responders were getting there. The driver hadn’t been wearing a seat belt and he went through the windshield. There were pieces of him splattered all over the road. It’s odd how it doesn’t really seem like a person when you first see it. Then, after a second, you realize how messed up it is.
I wasn’t there when it happened. But needless to say, after that, I wear my seat belt every time I’m in a car.
41. An Untrusted Adult
When I was in middle school, we had this assistant principal who was a tad strange. He often would pet people’s hair and would always dress code everyone over the most redundant things. Fast forward two years and I am eating noodles, when the telly comes on and starts discussing how the same guy was just placed behind bars for getting into relationships with minors, as well as grooming and selling illicit photos of these kids to both his boyfriend and adult websites.
42. Strangers Under A Train
I watched in horror as this intoxicated-seeming guy fell onto a commuter rail track just as the train was coming. Maybe he did so on purpose, but I don’t know. Either way, the sound and sight of him getting run over has stayed with me for life as the scariest, most brain-scarring thing ever. I hope no one else ever has to hear those awful crunching and splattering noises again,
43. Baby Face
I used to have a truck that I swore had the ghost of a deceased baby in it. I used to get home late from my job as a dishwasher. After I parked and was sitting in my driveway with the engine off, I would hear this really faint sound of a baby crying. Late at night when it was quiet, it used to make my arm hairs stand on end. I used to get home and hop out of the car in fear of hearing it.
One night, I decided to sit there and just listen, trying to pinpoint the sound. Eventually, I discovered that it was indeed not the ghost of a baby. Rather, whenever I undid my seat belt buckle, the old spring of the seat belt retractor would very slowly start pulling the belt in, creating a faint noise that sounded like the wailing I had been hearing.
44. A Horror Film
I had been working on a student film a few years ago and I was tasked with taking care of all of the equipment. Earlier that day, I had leaned the camera crane against the wall in its large oddly shaped bag, not thinking anything of it. Fast forward to that night, when I wake up to find a dark figure leaning against my wall as if staring at me as I sleep.
I slowly roused myself, making sure to stay very still before mustering up the courage to say “Who are you?” in a shaky voice filled with terror. I sat there motionless for ten minutes before I fully woke up and realized I am an idiot. It was just the crane I had placed there earlier. Strangely, that was the most terrified I have ever been in my life.
45. That’s The Way The Cookie Crumbles
I’d been living alone for less than a week. I got some Chinese take-out and was eating in front of the TV. I finished my meal and cracked open the fortune cookie. It read “You will have a visitor tonight, lock your door.” There were no visitors that night, but the memory still haunts me. It remains one of the creepiest experiences that I’ve ever had.
46. Cat Got Your Tongue
I once heard bobcat screams in the middle of the night. We have a house on the lake with a decent amount of wooded property, so we get all kinds of wildlife roaming around. We can’t see any houses around us and there are no street lights, so it’s pitch black woods all around us. We were there with some friends last weekend, playing some cards around midnight, when we heard a bobcat.
It sounded like a ghostly woman screaming in the night. Our dogs started going nuts trying to get out. Definitely freaky when it’s coming from pitch black woods.
47. What’s In A Name?
The creepiest thing I’ve ever experienced was a stranger approaching me and saying: “I think I found your username on Reddit.” Umm, excuse me??
48. Watch Party
I was driving to pick up a friend who was at this cabin party about forty miles west of where I lived. It was close to 2:00 in the morning. So I’m driving down this back road to find this random cabin somewhere, and I come across this red four-door sedan with all the doors open—but that’s not the scariest part. There are four limp figures in the seats with their heads slumped over.
I was way too freaked out to stop. Later on, I’m driving by again after a failed attempt at picking up my friend. Mind you, it’s getting close to 3:00 in the morning by now. This time, only the front seat passenger door was open—and every person in that car was staring with a blank expression directly at me as I drove past at ten miles per hour.
I’ll never forget it.
49. I’ll Be Watching You
I’m a journalist and was told this doozy by a woman I interviewed for a story. When this woman was a young girl, say eight years old, she started to come downstairs at night to tell her father that there was a man in her closet. He tells her there’s no such thing as the Boogeyman and sends her back to bed. This happens on and off for like a week.
Finally, he gets frustrated and walks her back to the room. He says, “I’ll show you there’s nothing in your closet” and goes to open the door. It opens an inch and then he feels someone slam it shut. It turns out there really was a man in her closet. This guy was a creep who would come into the house every night and stare at the girl from the closet while she slept.
The dad kicked the heck out of him and the creep had to serve a sentence for many years—but the horror didn’t end there. I researched her story 20 years after this happened. The guy had just gotten freed again and no one could find him.
50. Watch Out For That Last Step
I was on vacation in Ithaca with my boyfriend at the time. We had literally, I’m talking ten minutes, just gotten into town and stopped at a suspension bridge near Cornell’s campus. I’m terrified of heights, so my boyfriend was coaxing me step by step over the bridge. It was gorgeous and we stopped in the middle to take a picture.
On the side we had come from, there was a parking lot with steps leading to the bottom of the gorge. But on the far side, there were hiking paths with no barrier. A woman walked past us and offered to take a picture for us. We declined. What she did next was absolutely chilling. She smiled and walked quickly to the far side of the bridge where she smoothly jumped off into the gorge.
There was not a second of hesitation. It was almost like she expected the path to keep going. The sound of a person hitting the ground from a jump like that sticks with you.