Art & Entertainment

Why Are People So Obsessed with Haunted Houses?

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Haunted Houses and Things That Go Bump in the Night

Yep, it’s time for Halloween!

I remember my one and only time visiting a haunted house. I believe I was a freshman in high school. My mom took my best friend and me to the haunted house and we were nervous and scared with anticipation of what was to come.

It was actually an outdoor event where you had to walk through the woods on a trail and at different times monsters, zombies, and other frightening things would jump out and scare the sh*t out of you. I pretty much screamed the entire time.

After experiencing my first haunted house, I remember feeling terrified but also thrilled that I made it through such a scary experience. Despite that thrilling feeling I had, I never visited a haunted house again. And I don’t plan on doing it again now. No, thank you!

But you know, I’ve always wondered, why are people so obsessed with haunted houses and scary movies?

Michala (15) thinks haunted houses are pretty cool. I just don’t get it. What enjoyment do people get out of being scared?

I read this article by Allegra Ringo. Ringo writes, “One of the main hormones released during scary and thrilling activities is dopamine, and it turns out some individuals may get more of a kick from this dopamine response than others do.”

2017 Top Ten List of America's Best Haunts Releases 2017 Top Ten List of “America’s Best Haunts” (PRNewsfoto/

Why Scary Things Scare Us Even Though It’s Not Real

This article by Kelsey Kennedy is also a good read explaining “Why Haunted Houses Scare Us– Even If We Know They’re Fake.”

Kennedy writes, “In the brain, the amygdala’s first and dominant emotional response is fear. Your brain puts all its resources into dealing with the problem at hand, so rational thought gets suspended. This all means that even though you logically know you’re safe, your brain pushes that logic to a corner of your rational, thinking self and sort of tricks you into thinking you’re part of a live horror show.”

I can honestly say, when I see a haunted house or a commercial for one, my stomach instantly gets butterflies and I just don’t’ want to look at it. It bothers me that much.


Michigan’s Most Haunted House

An article on Insider lists “the most haunted house in every state.” Madeline Diamond, the writer of the piece, lists the Detroit Masonic Temple as Michigan’s most haunted house.

Diamon writes, “One ghost in particular that is said to haunt the giant building is that of George D. Mason, one of its architects.”

Have you “seen” the ghost of Mason? I visited the Masonic Temple in winter of 2016. I was on a photography tour of the historic temple. I don’t recall experiencing any ghosts are strange things, but I do know I felt a little spooked…and amazed because the architecture is pretty magnificent.

And this book features true stories about haunted houses, paranormal encounters, and even…Big Foot! I just can’t even imagine.


Is Visiting a Haunted House Good for Your Mental Health?

Here’s an article by Elizabeth Daley about how “Visiting a haunted house is good for your mental health”. Um, what? Seriously?

According to Daley, sociologist Margee Kerr believes, “…the feeling of terror we get when we enter a pitch-black room or when an unexpected goblin pops out from behind a mirror may be a helpful distraction from our everyday woes.”

I can see Kerr’s point, but I think I’ll pass. What do you think? 


2017 Top Ten List of "Americas Best Haunts" Releases 2017 Top Ten List of “America’s Best Haunts” (PRNewsfoto/

2017 Top Ten List of “America’s Best Haunts” released their 2017 top 10 list of “America’s Best Haunts”. According to the website, the list was carefully selected by a panel who spent over 100 years combined working in the haunted house and horror industry. “Only the scariest, horrifying and the most cutting-edge haunted houses made our list.”

You can also check out this book about haunted houses from around the world!

Although no Michigan-based haunted houses made the list, there are two Chicago-based haunted houses which made the cut. Have you been to any of these haunted houses?

1. House of Torment
Location (multiple): Austin, TX – Chicago, IL

2. Headless Horseman
Location: Ulster Park, NY

3. The Asylum Haunted House
Location: Denver, CO

4. 13th Floor Haunted House
Location (multiple): Denver, CO – San Antonio, TX – Phoenix, AZ – Chicago, IL

5. Fear Farm and Phoenix Haunted Hayride
Location: Phoenix, AZ

6. Cutting Edge
Location: Fort Worth, TX

7. Bates Motel
Location: Philadelphia, PA

8. Spookyworld NE
Location: Litchfield, NH

9. Haunted Hotel
Location: San Diego, CA

10. Scarehouse
Location: Pittsburgh, PA


That One Time My Toddler Asked Me to Go to a Haunted House

Zhen (almost 5) asked me if she could go to a haunted house. “I want to go to a haunted house,” she exclaimed, excitedly jumping up and down. Uh, no. It’s not going to happen. LOL!

I know a lot of people enjoy going to haunted houses, and that person may be you. Cool beans! But I think I’ll skip the scary stuff. I’m perfectly fine with enjoying the cute Halloween themes. 🙂

What do you think? Why do you think people enjoy haunted houses and scary movies?


For a complete list of the winners and further information, please visit


What are your thoughts?