I think most, if not all, of us can agree that at some point in our childhood we saw a horror movie (or two... or three?!) that we proooobably shouldn't have.
And said horror movie was presumably so messed up/inappropriate for our age group that it actually burned itself into our memories in one way or another. (Oops!)
So, when Reddit user u/Past_Confection_4068 recently posed the question, "What horror movies fucked you up as a child?" to the r/AskReddit community, they had PLENTY to share. Here are some of the best and top-voted responses:
"My cousin had me watch the original when I was seven — I didn't take a shower without my mom being in the next room for at least a month. I still remember being brave enough to finally take a shower when she was gone. I was traumatized for sure, but it did kick off a love of Stephen King that continues to do this day, so it's a trade-off."
"My mum saw It had a clown in it and assumed it was a kid's film, so she put it on for me and my sister to watch when we were nine and 10. We told her we didn't like it, that the clown was being mean to the kids, but she didn't take us seriously. It would only be a couple years later when her and dad watched it they realized it wasn't a kid's film."
"People have told me that it's not scary as an adult, they've said it's silly and dumb. I cannot bring myself to watch it still. I cannot do it. I'll just trust you guys."
2.Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)
"Ernest Scared Stupid gave me night terrors when I was like 12 or 13, so I just don't watch scary movies at all."
"YES!!! Ernest Scared Stupid was the only horror movie that, to this day, ever scared me. IDK why."
3.Event Horizon (1997)
"Convinced my friend's mom to rent it for us at Blockbuster and very much regretted getting away with it...we weren't ready.
"My Dad took me to see it not realizing the absolute shit show it was going to turn into. I still get tense watching or playing anything with big ass spaceships. That and when people are crawling through vents in anything. Can't unsee it."
"This one right here. Fucked me up for months. Specifically the party where they find the onboard footage and the dude is speaking gibberish holding his eyeballs."
4.An American Werewolf in London (1981)
"Due to some poor parenting decisions, I watched An American Werewolf in London when I was only about four or five. I saw it again when I was 18 and was immediately confused, because it felt like someone had filmed my nightmares from 13 years earlier."
"Watched it around the same age the first time. Still have not been out in the moors. It's a favorite now, almost comical."
5.Jeepers Creepers (2001)
"I had nightmares about the ending for a long time after that."
"I stupidly went to the cinema to watch this when I was 17. Got the train home with my friend at like 11 p.m., he continued on to the next town. I was the sole person to get off at my stop (I lived in the suburbs) not shitting you, but the usual street light at the stop wasn't working. I started walking down the path towards the main road, flanked by the railway and a small wooded area to my left, pitch blackness. That terrifying movie still in my head, trying not to think about it, suddenly the trees rustled to my left. I start sprinting faster than any time in my whole life towards the street a couple of hundred meters in front. About halfway, I suddenly remembered they have concrete bollards down this path to prevent cars from going down it, as soon as I remembered my knees smashed into them. I musta flew for about 3–4 meters, landed on my arm to cushion the landing, it was broken. The pain got rid of the fear though! Never watched that damn movie since."
"It's the reason I still occasionally look under my bed LOL."
"I saw the movie when I was around seven. I had a tree outside my bedroom window and was terrified it was going to eat me for weeks."
7.The Exorcist (1973)
"As a kid, I could handle aliens, serial killer stuff, your usual shock horror... But when you mix in the devil and religion and all that, that got to me pretty good."
"Yep, that Catholic upbringing made this feel more like a true story."
"My older cousin and I rented it on summer vacation at my grandma’s. My mom made us watch it downstairs so we didn’t scare the little cousins. So we watched it in a basement full of boxes and broken things with a few side rooms with doors that wouldn’t close all the way and a couch that didn’t snug up against the wall completely and I was scared for MONTHS afterward."
8.The Ring (2002)
"Watched that movie when I was eight and it took over 10 years to rewatch it. I couldn't even imagine watching the ring itself."
"I had to turn around my TV before I went to bed. It was one of the big ones. Slept with the lights on. 27 now and I'm still having nightmares about it."
9.The Brave Little Toaster (1987)
"Growing up I was pretty certain that I would die by being compacted into a tiny cube after getting dumped on a conveyor belt by an angry magnet."
"It was the air conditioner getting angry and exploding for me!"
"That fucking clown firefighter whispering 'RUN' through his teeth. Nightmare fuel."
10.Child's Play (1988)
"Watched it when I was six...😑. Still fucking hate Chucky!"
"I caught a few scenes of it when I was five. I’m 34 now and my last Chucky nightmare was around three weeks ago. No matter where I go/how fast I run, he’s always there trying to stab my ankles. I hate Chucky."
11.Fire in the Sky (1993)
"THAT scene. No further description required."
"This isn't even billed as a horror movie, and it's hands down the most I've ever been afraid of anything, ever, in my whole life. I had to sleep under the bed for months, terrified that those little prune-like dudes were coming to get me."
12.The Final Destination franchise (2000–)
"As silly as it sounds, I was really scared of doing, pretty much anything for a few days... weeks LOL."
"That franchise scared an entire generation into being cautious around logging trucks."
13.The Dark Crystal (1982)
"The scene where that Skeksi gets jumped and has his clothes ripped off made me extremely uncomfortable. Then the poor little Muppets getting their life force drained out and turned into slaves."
"Didn’t like being in a dark bathroom for a few years."
"Yes... Just a few years... We're all definitely too mature to worry about that now..."
"I was six, not long out the oven. I had bunk beds. DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY FACE HUGGERS CAN GET UNDER BUNK BEDS?"
"My dad got a bootleg version on Beta circa 1980. I refused to sleep for three days."
"The home video scene of a birthday party, where the alien walks by the window… That visual screwed me up as a kid, I thought it was real."
"I used to shower against the wall, because I thought if the alien were to reach in to grab me — they’d have to hit the shower stream of water, first."
"Don’t know why but when they first show the demon’s face when he’s standing at the bottom of the pool… I’ll never forget how much that terrified me."
18.Pet Sematary (1989)
"Zelda kinda fucked me up at the time. Saw it at the theater and didn’t sleep well thinking about her that night."
"Yeah when she runs across the room to Rachel. Not a good moment for me."
19.And finally, The Shining (1980)
"I convinced my parents to let me watch it when I was like eight, because I had seen the Treehouse of Horror parody. That bathtub scene fucked me up and I refused to bathe for the longest time."
"I saw it for the first time when I was seven. The opening scene scared the ever-loving shit out of me. The part where he’s driving up the mountain in the VW bug. Maybe I was a sensitive kid, but something about the opening sequence of that film scared me to death."
Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.