What scares us the most

The desire to scare others

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But it's not just your own fear that can be fun, many also love to scare others. Margraf sees two possible causes in this. On the one hand, a person also feels tension and relaxation when he makes others shudder. He lurks behind the door and waits for his victim - that's the tension. Then he jumps out screaming, the victim is frightened, in the best case both laugh: a common feeling of relaxation.

Margraf sees the other cause in the exercise of power over others. Most people have a moderate need for this. Therefore, many play rather harmless pranks. Only a few tend to threaten innocent, unsuspecting people with weapons, for example as horror clowns.

Men like to be extremely scared

It is interesting that such extreme horror is almost exclusively fun for men. "The behavior of male power can still be observed in our closest animal relatives," says Margraf. "There are several attempts to explain this, all of which are more or less politically incorrect and none of which has yet been scientifically proven."

Dressing up on Halloween to scare others a little bit is not considered pathological behavior. The import holiday is now also established in this country. Most people know that they will encounter more creepy figures on the street that evening than usual.

If you want to play a prank on someone on other days, you shouldn't overdo it. Above all, deceptively real weapons are considered a threat according to Section 241 of the Criminal Code. Particularly persistent alarmists can be guilty of an administrative offense or coercion according to Section 118 of the Administrative Offenses Act and Section 240 of the Criminal Code. It is then more advisable to watch people with VR glasses shudder.