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    17 Creepy Stories Of Paranormal Experiences That People Swear Actually Happened To Them

    Creepy stories just in time for spooky season.

    Two weeks ago, Reddit user u/butti-03 asked the AskReddit community a question that truly made me hear Robert Stack's voice — from Unsolved Mysteries — as I read it: "What's the most paranormal thing that's ever happened to you?"


    The thread got hundreds of replies. Here are some of the top-voted and best comments that will truly send a chill up your spine:

    1. The tucking in:

    "When I was growing up, my bed used to face the hallway out of my bedroom, and at the end of this hallway was a bathroom. Every night down this hallway, figures would walk by, stop, and wave, then walk directly into the bathroom. These figures were things that I knew but also didn’t know. Sometimes it would be Ernie from Sesame Street, other times it could be a black odd creature that I had never seen before. But they would always stop, look at me, then continue down the hall.

    "Every night also, my mom would come and tuck me into bed. This was a clockwork routine you do with your kids: bedtime story, kiss, tuck in goodnight, etc. One night my mom didn’t, and I remember calling her over and over again. Finally, after I'd been calling her, she walked down the hall and into my room. I remember her coming in. She didn’t read to me, but she apologized and tucked the sheets in around me. She kissed me goodnight and told me she loved me. When she left the room, she didn’t go down the hallway toward the rest of the house. She went toward the bathroom and didn’t come back out.

    "I remember sitting there watching the hallway and getting a sick feeling in my stomach. I waited a while, then called for her; I didn’t get a response. I remember getting up and going to the hallway to see if she was still there; she wasn’t. I was so freaked out, I ran down the other direction of the hallway to the rest of the house. All the lights were off, and I remember running to her room. She was asleep in her bed. I went to sleep with her that night. And in the morning, I asked her if she came in and tucked me in. She told me that she didn’t and she was so, so tired that she went to bed."


    2. The dark figure:

    "My bed faced the door to the hallway, and my room was next to the bathroom. We would keep the bathroom light on at night to make it easy to get around the house. I would regularly see shadowy figures walking past the bathroom at all hours of the night, but I never seemed to be scared by them. One night, one of those shadowy figures stopped at my door for longer than usual, and I immediately felt uncomfortable.

    "I had a guardian angel 'stone' that was really just a porcelain angel figurine in a glass bead. I grabbed it out of my pillowcase and squeezed it tight. Suddenly, there was a super-bright light that came from behind this dark figure, and it looked as if both the dark figure and this light bolted back into the bathroom. I still live in that house, and I still see the shadowy figures in the night."


    Opened door with bright light
    Kamisoka / Getty Images

    3. The still-on-time husband:

    "My great-grandmother's husband passed years before she did. After his death, her house always felt creepy. Well, he was a trucker and would be home every weekend — and just like clockwork every Friday at 6 p.m., you'd hear the front porch creak, and then after about eight seconds, you'd hear heavy boot steps on the kitchen floor. 

    "She started deteriorating on a Monday. She wanted to be home, so the hospital let her go home, since there was nothing they could do. She passed at 6:05 p.m. that Friday. Her last words were to her daughter: 'Don't cry, George is here to walk with me.' The next Friday, there were no boot steps, and the house has now fallen silent with time. After she passed, the house felt happier. Now, I'm not a very spiritual person, but I believe her husband waited for her."


    4. The mysterious creature on the side of the road:

    "My two best friends and I went to the midnight premiere of Signs. That alone is why the three of us rarely tell people this incident. So as we were driving down a road we'd traveled a million times in order to get to one of our homes, my friend's headlights shined on what we suspected was a dog on the side of the road. My friend slowed down because he feared the dog might run out into the road. This gave us time to better make out the features. The creature was on all fours, had no tail or even fur, and was a solid charcoal color. But then, when we were maybe 20 yards away, it turned its head and looked at us — it only had a pair of eyes and no mouth. When we reached about 10 yards away, it STOOD UP and walked into some bushes. I actually cried, I was so terrified by what we'd seen. 

    "What made it feel the most real, though, was that none of us said a single thing until we reached my friend's house. We were all so uncertain about what we'd seen that we couldn't bring it up until my friend turned off his car and looked at me. We knew then that all three of us had seen the same thing. Never knew what it could be, but we're all damn near 40 and still don't really talk about it."


    Creepy road lit by headlights
    Cavan Images / Getty Images / Cavan Images RF

    5. The visit:

    "When I was 13, my friend’s dad came over and knocked on my door. Before I could even get to the door, he started walking away. I went outside and called out to him, but he just looked back at me and continued home. I thought it was odd, so I sent him a text. No reply, but that was normal for him. About five hours later, my friend came and knocked on my door. She told me that her dad had died the night before in a car accident because he had fallen asleep at the wheel. I’ll never forget that moment of confusion/shock. I had JUST seen him. He couldn’t be dead. To this day, I’m still shocked that it happened."


    6. The boy who lived in a closet:

    "I'm not a superstitious man at all, but this is the one story that I cannot explain:

    "I was spending Christmas with a mate's family at their holiday home, which was in the middle of nowhere in the bush, Australia. There were about 10 of us, and two of the uncles would be turning up the next day. Anyway, the place that we were staying in was old — I'm talking at least 150 years old — and in one of the rooms was this old, closet-type thing (think of the wardrobe from Beauty and the Beast), and that was the room that the youngest kid was going to be staying in because it had a single bed. The youngest was about 5 years old and was the son of one of the uncles.

    "So anyway, I was walking around the house when I heard the kid talking to someone in the room. I thought that someone was there, so I walked in and said, 'Hey, who are you talking to?' and the kid replied, 'I'm talking to Charlie. He lives in the closet. He is my friend and we are going to play more later.'

    "Naturally, I thought it was just him playing around and making up an imaginary friend, so the next day when we were having lunch and the uncles turned up, I said to him to tell his father about his friend. When the kid said, 'Oh, that's just Charlie, we are going to play later on,' the father grabbed his arm and said in a kind of panicked tone, 'Where is Charlie? And what does he look like?' The kid responded, 'He lives in the closet in my room and has this long coat on.'

    "Both of the uncles jumped up, ran into the room, dragged the closet outside, and set it on fire. We all then left really quickly. I asked them both WTF had just happened, and they said, 'When we were boys, we used to play with an "imaginary friend" named Charlie as well, who lived in the closet, and he always tried to get us to come play with him in the bush away from the house.'

    "So whatever it was that happened, it was enough to scare the shit out of two grown men when one of their sons mentioned an 'imaginary friend' with the same name who lived in the closet."


    An old wooden wardrobe in a room
    Skatzenberger / Getty Images / iStockphoto

    7. The unresponsive sister:

    "The old house my family grew up in was haunted AF. Doors would forcibly slam open and shut. Lights would turn on and off by themselves. Didn't matter if you were alone or with other people in the house — shit still happened. You'd hear footsteps and find nobody there, stuff of that nature. 

    "Most memorable for me would be walking past my sister sleeping on the couch and her sitting up and turning to look at me. Only her eyes were still rolled back in her head, and all you could see were the whites of her eyes. She was unresponsive when I talked to her. Creepy enough, right? When I started to walk more, her head would turn to follow me. I went and got a friend who was staying at my house for the night, but my sister was unchanged. Creeped us out, so we went back into my room and locked the door."


    8. Grandma's house:

    "My old friend from middle school lived in a pretty old house that was pretty nicely renovated, along with a really nice basement. My friend would always tell me stories about what would go on in the house: Shadows would dash across the hallways, random chills, compressed chest feelings, footsteps, and the creepiest being floating toothbrushes. He said that it was his grandma’s house and she still haunts the place. I brushed it off after being there a few times before and never really seeing anything.

    "We had a sleepover one night and slept in the basement, where we had a blast playing video games all night long and just being kids. I was an early bird, so I woke up around 6 a.m., and not wanting to disturb anyone, I walked upstairs to just relax and do my own thing. I was on the couch for a little while when I started hearing the plant to my right rustle quietly, which I ignored until it was unbearable to listen to, but when I looked at it, it stopped moving. I looked back down at the book I was reading and it rustled again, this time not stopping when I looked at it.

    "I then heard creaking, and the lights above the kitchen table started swinging back and forth, and the plant was still vigorously shaking. I decided, 'Fuck this!' and threw my book down and ran to the basement. But when I started to run, there was another pair of footsteps sprinting right behind me. As I ran downstairs, the steps stopped at the top. My buddy was now awake, asking why I was so loud. I told him what happened, hoping to get an 'it’s probably just you being scared or something.' Instead he calmly explained, 'That’s why I decided we should sleep in the basement. When my grandma was still living in this house, this basement wasn’t here, so she has never come down here.'

    "I went there again a good number of times because we were good friends, and I experienced whispering and chills. Nothing as intense as what I experienced then. He still lives with his parents there and tells me she’s been getting more aggressive, to the point where the whole family experiences stuff. I’m thankful I saw her when she was more 'chill.'"


    Going down the steps into the basement
    Secret Agent Mike / Getty Images

    9. The loud noises:

    "Weird things always happened in my house while I was growing up. Hammering, footsteps, and random whistling were common occurrences. Before my family had moved into the house, the previous tenant's husband had died by suicide in our backyard, so we would always think it was him. The activity was never bad, just random, but my dad's sister had gifted us with a Virgin Mary that would light up at night, in hopes that it would somehow protect us.

    "This particular night, my mom had fallen asleep in the living room, and so as not  to wake her up, we had left her there with the Virgin Mary's light on in case she woke up and wanted to go back to her room. I was a teenager at the time and commonly stayed up talking on the phone with my boyfriend late into the night. I'm not very sure what time it was, but I remember I was lying in bed with the door to my room open. The light from the Virgin Mary came into my room, so I could clearly see everything. I was laughing at something my boyfriend had said when I suddenly heard a loud crash next to my bed, followed by running footsteps. It sounded as if a heavy box was dropped, so I quickly looked to see what had fallen but found nothing. I froze in fear for a bit.

    "My boyfriend kept asking what the loud noise was and if I was okay. I was explaining the situation to him as I was getting up to turn on the light when my mom ran into my room yelling at me that I had woken her up with all the running I kept doing in the living room. I told her that it wasn't me and explained to her what had just happened. She just gave me a suspicious look and told me to hang up the phone and go to sleep. I, of course, couldn't sleep that night and stayed up with the light on. We sometimes talk about that night, but we have no explanation for what happened."


    10. The man on the bus:

    "Around 2006, while I was still in high school, I was going back home by bus. It was summer and a very hot afternoon. I was the only person on the bus because most people avoid traveling during the heat. I was sitting in the back, with only one more row of seats behind me. After a few minutes, a man appeared next to me, as if he'd stood up from the seat behind me. I clearly saw his hand as it grabbed the rail and pressed the button for a stop. His hand was an old man's, with spots and wrinkles. He was wearing a bright-orange suit. As I looked up to see his face, he disappeared. It didn't scare me; I was just confused. Several minutes later, it happened again. Again I tried looking at his face, and he disappeared. That game repeated for two or three more times until I got off the bus."


    Empty blue seats with its metal handles inside a bus in New York
    J2r / Getty Images / iStockphoto

    11. The empty parking lot:

    "I was working in a historic Civil War park and completely alone in a parking lot when I felt a heavy hand on my shoulder. I turned around, about to say, 'How can I help you?' only to find no one there."


    12. The building seen in dreams:

    "Had a recurring nightmare as a kid. Basically, I'd be sleeping in front of a structure that looked like a church mixed with a Greek temple. Every time, I would see myself get dragged into the oversize entrance and watch myself get pulled into the darkness. Once engulfed, I always woke up.

    "Eighteen years later, while in the military in Europe (not the continent where I grew up), I was sent out on a recon mission for a month. We had to watch over a village that was destroyed by a landslide from atop a mountain. I found that building I had dreamed of. It was one of the few buildings that weren't destroyed, and stood about 2 kilometers away, facing our camp. Lots of weird things happened on that deployment, and I'm happy I didn't get closer to that thing than needed. I never knew the name of the structure. But it was in Bondo, Switzerland."


    Black-and-white photo of church in Switzerland
    Mats Silvan / Getty Images

    13. The hug:

    "One time, my parents went out when I was I was in third grade, so I was still quite young. When they'd go out, I would usually sit on the couch and watch YouTube or play mobile games. My granddad — who had died recently — used to put his arm on my shoulder, and I got to know how that felt while sitting on the couch. That time, I felt his arm fully grab onto my shoulder. As I looked at my shoulder, I could still feel the pressure, and my jumper looked as if it had a hand on it. I phoned my parents right away, and they wouldn't believe me. It's been about 10 years now, and I remember it so ridiculously clear."


    14. The dream:

    "In most of my dreams, I am walking around my grandma's house. The place is a maze in real life, but when I’m asleep, it’s seemingly endless. When she died, I was devastated. She passed peacefully in her home, and my family kept the property. No one lives in it, but we still actively upkeep it.

    "I was living 400 miles away when I had a dream that I was wondering around the house, as I do most nights, only this time my grandma was calling out my name. I kept opening doors but couldn’t find her. Finally her voice got louder, and when I opened the door, it was her dressing room, only it was engulfed in smoke. Flames were pouring in through her window and I panicked. Next thing I knew, I was sitting up in bed.

    "I figured it was just a bad nightmare and tried to forget about it, but this one really stuck with me. Three days later, I get a call from my mom. She told me there had been a fire at Grandma’s. The 50-plus-year-old wiring started an electrical fire and, as it so happens, outside her dressing room. Luckily, the neighbor noticed it while having dinner and put it out. He didn’t have our phone number, so he left a note on the front door. It was three days before my mom went over there and found it. Turns out, I had that dream hours after it had actually happened. I don’t think my grandma resides in the house, but I think she’s watching out for it."


    Second story of house on fire
    Braclark / Getty Images

    15. The phantom of the movie theater:

    "I work at an old-ass movie theater. My coworker and I were the only ones working on a Sunday and it was super slow — we only had about five people in one of our theaters. Movie ended, people left, and we were cleaning, just going about our jobs. As I was cleaning, I started hearing banging behind the actual screen and then a huge crash (there are old rooms located behind it). I stopped for a second and could hear faint whispering, which slowly got louder. I freaked out, thinking someone had broken in, so I grabbed my coworker, and both of us could hear the commotion behind the screen. We called the police and they arrived, found everything perfectly in place and no one behind it. Had us on edge for the rest of the night, and the officer thought we were crazy."


    16. The footsteps:

    "I was watching my friend's dog because she was out of town for the weekend. And, of course, she lives in an old, creepy house down in the woods. Anyways, I was on the couch in the living room, with the dog at my side and watching some TV, when I heard footsteps from the second story — and then I heard a door open. I thought someone might have broken in or something, so I went up with a knife, saw nothing, but got chills, so I closed the door, went down, and continued watching TV. 

    "After a while, I heard footsteps again, and this time I heard them distinctly going toward the stairs that lead into the living room. The dog stood up at my side and started growling toward the stairs as they began creaking, and I got an overwhelming feeling of not being wanted, so I took the dog and got the F out of there. As I walked rather hurriedly away from the house, I felt a gaze on me, and I turned around and saw a figure on the second story and then the curtains got shut. I ran home and I've never been down there since."


    And lastly...

    17. The old imaginary friend:

    "When I was a little girl, I had an imaginary friend named Sally. She was blonde and had a white party dress, black shoes, and a red bow. I saw her clearly but thought it was normal because of how imaginary friends are shown in cartoons. I eventually stopped seeing Sally and just shelved her memory to being a childhood fantasy. Then one day, a friend of mine who is sensitive asked me about the girl in the white dress and bow. I then told her about my old 'imaginary' friend. My sensitive friend said, 'I see her standing in the corner staring at us. She doesn't like that I can see her.' That was scary!"


    Double exposure of spooky girl against wall at home
    Cavan Images / Getty Images / Cavan Images RF

    You can read the full thread of responses on Reddit.

    Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.