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Why Do We Love Horror Movies?

This is a question that I get asked a lot, mostly from people who don’t love horror movies. It’s right up there at the top of the list with, ”why are you so obsessed with true crime?” but I will answer that question another day. I think that one of the main reasons I get asked this question so much is because horror movies make you feel fear, then fear causes anxiety. So, why would someone such as myself that has severe Generalized Anxiety Disorder want to even think of watching a horror movie? Well, I put on my bifocals, made a cup of tea, and did some research, and these are just some of the reasons I discovered why we like to feel the fear that horror movies bring us.

Being scared gives us a rush

Even though horror movies are fake, your brain sometimes gets things mixed up and can’t tell the difference between real and fake and whether you are actually in danger or not. So when you watch something scary, it triggers our very real fight-or-flight responses. when our bodies go into fight or flight, it floods our systems with endorphins, dopamine, and adrenaline, causing us to feel pumped up and like we can take on anything, including that machete-wielding maniac on the TV or movie screen.

It mentally helps us prepare for the worst

Horror movies can sometimes give you a glimpse into how a life-threatening situation could play out, and in turn what you learned from watching those situations can help you cope possibly if similar situations pop up in real life. Will we have a zombie apocalypse someday? Maybe, maybe not, but I’ve learned a lot from watching The Walking Dead for the past 10 years.

You’re scared, but you’re also safe

Even though during the first few moments of being scared during a horror movie/TV show we may get that adrenaline rush I spoke of earlier, eventually your brain will realize you are safe even though you’re still seeing scary things. A lot of people even feel a sense of accomplishment when the movie is over because they got scared but you watched the whole movie anyways. This is how I felt after watching both chapters of Stephen Kings ”IT” a few years ago, and actually, it made my Coulrophobia a whole lot better.

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