Remember when we used to ask our parents for a scary story before bed? Well, these people know stories and facts to keep you up at night, long after your childhood. From spiders that can pierce through a leather boot to intruders in the middle of the day, these disturbing facts are enough to chill you right to the bone.
#1 No Symptoms
You could have a brain aneurysm with zero symptoms. Any day it could rupture and end your life. It happened to my mom's friend right in front of her. The seemingly, perfectly healthy woman passed away at 40 without warning during a work trip and while having drinks with her friends. One second she was laughing, the next second she was on the ground. My poor mom was the one that had to call her husband and kids.
#2 An Invitation Inside
I don’t know how familiar anyone is with this case, but I thought this was kind of creepier than some of the other criminals out there. Serial criminal Richard Chase would try random houses to break into. If the door was unlocked, he saw it as an invitation. If it was locked, he saw it as a sign that he was unwelcome.
#3 Pry it Off
There is a spider that has fangs so powerful that it can bite through a leather boot. It usually attacks multiple times and you have to grab it and pry it off of you. It is also incredibly deadly. For those wondering, it's the Sydney Funnel Web Spider. Because of its venom, it is the deadliest spider. Also, of course it’s from Australia.
#4 Six Months in Forensics
I had an adjunct professor in college who was a sergeant for the state police. He worked years in narcotics-related stuff and spent a lot of time undercover. He saw the worst in people. Once it was discovered that he was a techie, it was an easy transition for him to computer forensics. He said computer forensics was mostly child cases.
He said that just six months in forensics aged him more than a decade of undercover stuff. You could easily tell he hated his job but felt since he had the skills to help convict these people, it was his duty to suck it up and do his job. He was also an amazing and skilled teacher. That man will forever have my respect.
#5 In Your Chest
When an autopsy is being performed, the organs are removed, weighed, sliced and placed into a plastic bag. This includes the brain and tongue. Once the person is finished, they then put everything together in the plastic bag and place it in the chest cavity. So when you're buried, your brain is actually in your chest.
#6 Poking Around
Lobotomies were once performed and completely without anesthetic. There was no way to gauge or predict its effectiveness because you were just swirling an ice pick around in brain tissue. Because of this, patients were often kept awake and asked questions during the lobotomy to see when their mental performance and behavior changed. This was to determine when the lobotomy was “done.”
#7 Some of the Weight
30 percent of the weight of solid waste is simply lifeless bacteria. I'm actually editing a book that gives a higher percentage, which I had to fact check. I've not received a response to my author query about the discrepancy, but that's okay. I'm at the limit of my curiosity. For those who want a percentage in liquid waste, that I don’t know yet.
#8 Missing Items
Not to scare anyone or anything like that, but there are a fair number of missing nuclear items. For some context, I actually used to work for a United States intelligence service on a project tasked with recovering these things. It was, simultaneously, the most boring and terrifying year and a half of my life
#9 An Extreme Form
In the 70s-80s, one of the first cases of many Southeast Asian refugees in the US who passed away screaming in their sleep was recorded. This was common for Lao-Hmong men who lived through the Cambodian genocide and CIA recruitment for the Lao Civil War. It's theorized that this was an extreme form of PTSD.
One story is that the man stayed up for days, fearing he would be attacked if he slept. He drank coffee and lied to his parents about sleeping. He did everything he could to keep from sleeping. According to some articles that I read about this, this man had passed away in the middle of a nightmare he was having.
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#10 Coming In
When I was younger, I was in my room one time and home alone. I heard our front door open and someone come inside, while everyone was out. Hours later, everyone came home. I asked and no one had stopped by. It always made me very uncomfortable. I only really heard the sound of them coming in, not leaving.
#11 Known a Few
So far, I’ve met at least five criminals. I went to school with a few who turned out to end the lives of others. It happened because of things like people getting rowdy at parties and ending badly or domestic incidents. I met one when he came into my work and asked for an application, then returned it the next day. A few weeks later he was arrested because he took his dad’s life. My cousin and uncle have both done something similar. My uncle has since passed, but he got away with a couple of crimes. My cousin was involved in my father’s attack. I’m only 25. I can’t imagine how many more I’ll actually talk to.
#12 Blinked Out of Existence
This one's a little esoteric, but false vacuum decay states that the fundamental properties of the universe might suddenly decide to change one day. It might be an insignificant change or so great that all matter would just cease to exist. If that were to suddenly happen, we wouldn't see it coming until we blinked out of existence.
#13 One of My Worst Fears
You can actually wake up during surgery. As scary as that sounds on its own, that’s honestly not even the worst part. The worst part of it all is that you’re still paralyzed. You can feel everything that they do to you but you can't signal to them that you’re actually conscious. This is one of my worst fears.
#14 An Itchy Face
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve had the sensation that an eyelash has dropped into my eye. I’m always digging into my eye to get out the eyelashes or crud or whatever. Also my face is itchy and I have an allergy to dust mites, so I live with a continually itchy nose. In my 40s, my optometrist told me I have Demodex (tiny mites) in my eyelashes. She could tell by looking with a huge lens.
She got me eye wipes with tea tree oil and the itch disappeared. You can't use straight tea tree oil, it's too strong, but it rids of Demodex whereas a lot of things don't. They live elsewhere on your body so I don't think you can get them all. I have to use my eye wipes a few times a week. Apparently, Demodex are part of normal facial flora, but they become over numerous in some people. Their waste causes irritation.
#15 Trouble in the Woods
What’s really cool is Dark Forest Theory. Do you know how when there’s trouble in the woods and all the birds and animals go quiet? There’s a theory that there are alien races are out there, but they’re maintaining total radio silence. There’s no way to know if another species wants to harm you. The only way to ensure your own species‘ survival is to destroy any other species you encounter immediately.
#16 The First One
In the United States, if you’re the first patient to ever receive a certain type of implant, or if your implant is part of an alpha study, you have no legal right to know that. You can flat out ask your doctor and they're allowed to lie to your face and say they've implanted hundreds of these devices before when you're literally the first one.
#17 Not Required
Super fun fact: embalming is not required by law in most states, nor are those fancy, over-priced caskets, etc. The funeral industry in the United States is a huge racket that preys on grieving folks. Please check out and consider a green burial. More and more “natural” cemeteries are being created every day.
#18 Worth It
In the early 2000s, I was working the abuse department at an ISP. 99% of the complaints were spam, portscanning, etc. But about four times a year, I'd get a complaint regarding inappropriate material regarding kids. I'd have to go in, download a few files, look at them to confirm, then put them on a floppy disk, encrypt, and call the police. Yeah, I saw some horrible stuff. Some nights I didn't sleep too well. But then came a few weeks later with a newspaper article about the guy getting arrested and that made it worth it.
#19 Little Stinging Hairs
There is a plant called Dendrocnide moroides also known as “Gympie Gympie.” It’s mostly found in Australia and has little stinging hairs all over it. When touched, they inject a neurotoxin in your body which hurts so much, most people would rather end their lives than wait the one or two days until it gets better.
#20 Still So Paranoid
I was kidnapped when I was a child. Ever since then, I always close all blinds in the house as soon as it’s sunset because I’m still so paranoid after all these years. Even after all of these years, let me tell you that I constantly think that someone is stalking me. The entire experience has been uncomfortable.
#21 Do the Math
Think of someone you love but only see a few times a year. Now take a guess at how many years until one of you passes away. How many more times in your lifetime are you going to see that person? If you moved away from your parents and only see them three times a year and you expect them to live another 30 years, that's less than 100 times you will ever see them again.
#22 Look Behind You
I was burgled a few years ago. It was about 2:00 a.m. and I was sat at my computer wearing full headphones and an Oculus Rift headset. I was also home alone. It was only when I took it all off and went to get a drink that I saw all my downstairs doors were wide open, as well as the rear exit door. It still freaks me out to think someone could have have been stood right behind me and I would have had no idea.
#23 No Known Cure
Prions exist. I am not that good with biology and I left it to other people in my life to explain it to me. But, prions are misfolded proteins that cause other proteins that interact with them to become misfolded or prions themselves. This can stop crucial body processes and cause you to lose your life. There’s also no cure.
#24 Yellowstone Super Volcano
If the Yellowstone Super Volcano erupted, it would decimate most of America. It's unlikely to happen any time soon, but it's 2020: The Year of Total Nonsense. So, it wouldn't surprise me at this point. Though, to make matters worse, I've also been told that it would actually affect most of the world, not just America.
#25 Series of Events
For those unfamiliar, a hockey player named Colby Cave passed away two days ago from a brain hemorrhage in his sleep. It’s horrifying that a 25-year-old in peak physical condition can go to bed and just pass away, essentially. Especially by something so far beyond anyone's control. It’s a totally heartbreaking series of events.
#26 The Goat Doesn’t Care
Goats were used as a medieval method. They’d strap someone to a chair for two days with their feet dipped in saltwater. Then, release a goat into the room. The goat would lick the salt of the victim's feet and since a goat's tongue is super coarse it will strip the feet. There was no pleading and no mercy. The goat won't care about the screams.
#27 Chilled Cribs
Some hospitals have chilled cribs for stillborn babies. They look like normal cribs but they’re cooled. It's designed for families to say goodbye before the child is taken away. Some hospitals even provide photography services for these families. You can even donate money so more hospitals have these cribs. It's sad that something like that needs to exist, but kind for families in that situation.
#28 Without Your Knowledge
People's "conscious" decisions are usually nothing of the sort; they're usually made subconsciously. Then, all the conscious mind normally does is build narratives about the previously-made decisions. Those narratives consciously seem to arise concurrently with the decisions, but really they arise only afterward. Research on split-brain patients has proven all of this. Simply put: your brain makes choices without you knowing; then tricks you into thinking the choices were yours, by allowing you to invent gratifying reasons why you supposedly chose them.
#29 Unit 731
Unit 731. Japan during WWII made other experiments look like child's play. Their experiments never used anesthesia, so prisoners were awake and felt everything. Frostbite testing, forced pregnancy, biological testing, and high-pressure chambers were implemented. The worst part is none of the doctors or staff who conducted these experiments were ever punished. They were granted immunity in exchange for all of the documents they had collected doing these experiments.
#30 Sparkles in the Grass
Go outside at night, face a flashlight towards what you are looking at and look at the grass. All those little sparkles that look sort of like dew? Spiders. They're all spiders. At that moment you will truly realize that spiders are everywhere and the vast majority are harmless or you now have arachnophobia if you didn't already.
#31 Nothing Stopping It
There's nothing fundamentally stopping something in your brain from breaking forever while you sleep tonight. You could be hungry forever, lose your eyesight, become consumed with uncontrollable rage, whatever. All it takes is a tiny hemorrhage in the right spot responsible for regulating some signals and they can happen to literally anyone.
#32 If You Do it Right
When performing an autopsy, pathologists take the tongue, tracheae and esophagus out through the chest cavity by loosening and then reaching up through the neck. It all comes out in one piece if you do it correctly. Depending on the reason for the autopsy, they may be taken out to look for pathology or for forensic purposes.
#33 Middle of the Day
One time, I was hanging out with this girl I was crushing on and she wanted to go see her cousin in another part of town. Being smitten, I was like sure! Just tell me where to go. We ended up in some ghetto part of town and within five minutes of being in the house. We then heard a loud bang coming from downstairs.
So, we ran down and see that the front door was off its hinges and asked her cousin downstairs what happened. He nonchalantly said some guy was trying to rob the place and kicked the door in, saw the cousin sitting on the couch, and ran away. That's when I noped out of there. It was kind of bizarre to think someone would do that in broad daylight on a weekend with four cars in the driveway.
#34 Chin on Chest
A friend of mine had a brother who passed away in a creepily abrupt and wholly unexpected way. His brother was just 30 years old, a fit runner and soccer player. One night after a few drinks with friends, he returned home and fell asleep in his chair while watching TV. He fell asleep sitting upright with his head resting forward, chin on his chest. Try it now, sit upright and angle your chin down as far as you can, take a breath. Feel how slightly laboured it is? Well, he slowly suffocated himself through the night.
#35 Until It’s Too Late
Sepsis. Sepsis is a world-wide silent monster that causes 8,000,000 departures globally each year. Sepsis is the leading cause of passings in hospitals. It can take you in a matter of mere hours without showing any symptoms until it’s too late. For those that are fortunate enough to survive it, it has an increased chance of reoccurring after your initial battle.
Up to 60% of survivors experience post-sepsis syndrome, a chronic, potentially life-long condition that impairs a survivor mentally, emotionally, cognitively, or physically. It hinders their ability to live their life properly. Please take just five minutes to familiarize yourself with the signs and symptoms of sepsis. It’s an incredibly acute, silent destroyer that shows no mercy no matter your health or age. Knowing the signs and symptoms might just save your life, or the life of someone you love.
#36 Outdated Procedures
Law enforcement bases its methods on catching serial criminals on the ones that let themselves get caught. The truly foolproof and effective ways to get away with crimes like that are still unknown and there are probably many criminals getting away with it because the procedure for investigations has not changed much in years.
#37 Won’t Even Bother
In 200 years, the chances are very high that all of us wouldn’t matter to the new generations and nobody would remember our names (unless you really look into it). So, all of those funny moments you wish to cherish in life forever will be forgotten and most people won’t even bother wondering about your existence.
#38 Small Eggs
Leech eggs are so small that there’s no way you’d even be able to spot them. So, what that means is that essentially, you can swallow hundreds of them if you fall into the wrong body of water. Even if you don't swallow any of them, they can still get into your eyes, ears, and up your nose. They hatch and feed off you.
#39 They Can Be Anywhere
The one thing that keeps me up at night is this irrational fear that people could be standing outside of my bedroom window, or in my closet, waiting for me to fall asleep. It's been a fear of mine so long as I can remember. My nightmares always circulate around that fear. People can be anywhere and everywhere, and they terrify me more than anything.
#40 Looking Normal
The fact that people who enjoy heavily disturbing matter performed on anyone (even children and animals) exist. They can look like everybody else on the street, a normal person. What I'm referring to is people who enjoy violent behaviour and disturbing matter done to anyone and are taking pleasure in seeing or performing them.
#41 An Empty Space
One day, or should I say a moment in time, the universe will end. Every star will die out, leaving neutron stars to roam the empty galaxy. When the last pair of neutron stars collide to make black holes, there will no longer be light in the universe. Then when the last black hole departs, the universe will just be an empty space of nothingness.
#42 Massive Landslide
There's an island in the Atlantic called La Palma that has a dormant volcano on it named Cumbre Vieja. The western flank of the volcano is unstable and could collapse. If that happens and causes a massive landslide, it would create a mega-tsunami that could wipe out the Eastern seaboard of the US with waves up to 200 feet high.
#43 Rewarding Bad Behavior
People with any amount of power over others will reward any and all behavior as long as it positively affects them. They’ll do it even if that behavior causes others harm. That’s why so many people are rude to customer service workers. The companies consistently show that they don’t care how customers act as long as they continue to pay them.
#44 From the Inside Out
Years ago I saw an episode of Monsters Inside Me where this guy was doing something outside and a fly flew into his eye. It only made contact for about a microsecond, but it was enough time for it to lay eggs. After they hatched, they started eating his eye from the inside and he was starting to go blind until a doctor figured out what was wrong. Just imagine that, getting your eye eaten from the inside and losing your sight all because a fly very briefly made contact with you. Ever since I learned about this, I get really paranoid when there is a fly around my face because this could possibly happen to me.
#45 That Guy’s Stare
One time, I was camping for a church event in the woods and there was this creepy-looking guy there who my mom wouldn’t let me or my sisters near. One night, I opened my tent to get some fresh air and I saw him staring at me. I froze and started to close my tent. I didn’t hear anyone walking away until the morning.
As if that wasn’t enough, when we were packing up to leave, I was left alone and just saw him in the distance. He had the same stare. I feel like that look is something you can’t explain. I also can’t tell you how many times I close my eyes and feel movement or a stare on me. People can really just be anywhere. What scares me is I could have easily passed over him or not opened my tent and never have known and probably did.
#46 Little Humans
I can't stand the thought of knowing my children will pass away one day. Hopefully, it is long after I'm gone. However, I'm haunted every day by the fact that these little humans I love so much will one day cease to exist, even if I'm not here. I get really bad anxiety over this and find myself crying during the day. I think I need help.
#47 Not a Clue
The fact that we haven't a single clue what happens after we pass on. Nothing is guaranteed based on your faith or your preference. Even if someone knew exactly what happened, with concrete evidence, no one would believe them, thus making it useless to even talk about. So, not only is there a metaphorical fog, we wouldn't believe what anyone says about it even if it were true.
#48 The Lotus Pose
Self-mummification was a Buddhist practice in which monks adopted certain living habits that made them enter a state of mummification while still being alive. This took a minimum of three years with a diet consisting of stuff like nuts, tree bark, pine needles and sometimes small rocks. They would also do extreme amounts of exercise. The process finished with an alive burial in a grave just big enough so they could do the lotus pose. A small tube for oxygen and a bell to ring every day if they were still alive were also given to them at this point.
#49 Frames of Reference
Since light has a finite speed and takes time to travel anywhere, you experience the entire world around you on a tiny delay. If a friend waves at you, you’re technically seeing them in the past (even if it’s just ever so slightly). You also never experience the true "present" with others and their own personal frames of reference.
#50 Testing for Rabies
There’s no way to test for rabies in an animal except to take brain tissue. That means removing the head and sending it into the lab. So, the next time the vet says they are sending out a rabies test… yep, that’s right. A head is being sent off to the lab. I have taken off more dog and cat heads than I care to think about. Please vaccinate your cats, even if they are indoor only. Bats are frequent house invaders and your indoor cat is going to be the first to catch that bat. Vaccinate your pets!