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The 8 Emotional Stages of Visiting a Haunted House

Halloween is right around the corner, and what better way to get in the spooky spirit than by visiting a haunted house? Sure, the last time you visited one was when you were like 5 years old, and you left crying like a baby, but now that you’re older, you can definitely handle the fake blood and faux zombies. And even if you do get a little scared (not like you would admit it), it’s all for fun, right? The emotional stages you go through while in a haunted house are all part of the experience.

1. The Excited Stage

On the drive over, you’re pumped. Haunted houses are fun, not scary.

Those knots in your stomach? Pure excitement! NOT anxiety.

You’re here. You’re ready. Bring on the monsters.

2. The Denial Stage

As you get in line, you start to feel butterflies in your stomach like you’re 5 years old again, but you shake it off.

You’re in college now! You’re brave!

No silly haunted house will scare you. Nope. No way.

3. The Bargaining Stage

You take your first couple steps into the house and look at your surroundings. Fake lightning? No big deal. Spiderwebs (aka silly string) hanging from the ceiling? Won’t scare you.

But that creepy clown in the corner is looking a little menacing…

But you’re not scared. It’s okay. You’re going to be fiiinneee. It’ll be over before you know it.

4. The Slightly Scared Stage

Alright, the eerie music is a little creepy. And that zombie’s costume looks freakishly real.

Did something just touch your leg? OMG, that guy in the mask is definitely coming to kill you.

5. The Rationalization Stage

You start to reason with yourself. None of this is real.

That isn’t real blood. These are people in costumes. All of this is fake.

Relax, breathe—just BREATHE.

6. The Completely Terrified Stage

Suddenly, something jumps out at you, and you can’t help but jump 10 feet in the air and scream.

Your heart is racing, and your palms are sweaty. This isn’t fun anymore. You feel like you’re 5 years old again and want your mom.

You want out NOW.

7. The Relief Stage

You sprint through the maze of monsters, past the guy with the chainsaw, and you finally spot the exit.

As you push through the door, you can’t help but let out a sigh of relief.

8. The Nonchalant Stage

When your friends come out making fun of all the fake ghosts, you laugh along with them.

It wasn’t that bad. You totally weren’t scared. 

But once is enough. Forever.

Kasia (pronounced "Kasha") recently graduated from Villanova University where she studied Communication. She's a self-proclaimed Pinterest enthusiast, aspiring writer, avid reader, and constant smiler. Besides writing for HC, you can find her practicing yoga or curling up with a book at a coffee shop. She plans to pursue a career in public relations or journalism, where she can live in a city and decorate her own apartment. Follow her on Twitter or check out her blog!