urban legends that will make you sleep with the lights on
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Urban Legends That Will Make You Want to Sleep with the Lights On

It's finally October, which means spooky season is here! Now, you can start prepping for fall weather, trick-or-treating and — everyone's favorite — ghost stories. Gather up your friends and huddle around the campfire for some of the scariest tales that will leave you with chills (and not because of the breeze).

But what's spookier than a ghost story? Urban legends. Based off real events, these fables are filled with bits and pieces of the true experiences. So, take a seat (and lock your door) and read some of the scariest urban legends below. Are these spooky stories true? We'll leave that up to you to decide. Warning: Do not read before bed!

The Vanishing Hitchhiker

There are a few variations of this story, but the most notorious is the story of two boys on their way to a high school dance. While driving, they pass a young girl with her thumb out on the road. Assuming she is a hitchhiker, they stop and ask if she needs a ride home. She says thank you and after they begin talking, they invite her to the dance.

After a night of dancing, the girl asks to be taken home and the boys drive her to her house. They drop her off at home, and as they are driving away, they notice she has left her coat in the car. Since it is late, they decide they will bring it to her in the morning.

The next day, the boys go to return her coat and knock on the door to her house. The girl's mother greets them and tells the boys that her daughter was killed in a car accident 12 years ago. She points down the road to the cemetery where her daughter is buried.

Still in shock, the boys go to the cemetery to see for themselves, and see the coat draped over a headstone engraved with the girl's name and the date of death — exactly 12 years ago to the day.

Are you scared, yet?

Bloody Mary

Everyone remembers playing this horrifying game as a child. But do you know where this scary tale originated?

Some believe Bloody Mary is a witch from the Salem witch trials coming back for revenge. Other's say she is the Queen Mary I of England, royally upset with her inability to have children. Either way, Mary is known for taking her grief out on the children that dare to taunt her.

Of course, you can summon Bloody Mary anytime, but Halloween is prime time. If you're a little rusty, here's how: chant “Bloody Mary" in front of a mirror while staring at your reflection in the dark. Then flicker the lights quickly, and see if you are able to see her reflection or hear her scream. If you've really agitated her, she may even pull you across the mirror or possess you — so watch out!

The Slender Man

The idea of the Slender Man was created by Eric Knudsen for a contest to create the scariest paranormal image. Depicted as a tall, skinny man who stalks kids from the woods, the story of the Slender Man has made its way into videos, photos and even games. But it hasn't stopped there.

There have been many crimes involving young teens that have been connected to this idea of the Slender Man. Recently, there was believed to be an actual Slender Man sighting, and a movie was even released explaining the details behind this horrifying phenomenon. So the next time you see a tall, dark, human-like shadow, run don't walk!

Think you may need to sleep with the lights on now? Although October is filled with jack-o-lanterns and candy corn, don't forget the essence behind this spooky month. Share the stories above to scare your friends and pass along these ghostly urban legends!

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