This Post About Checking The Shower Curtain For Murderers Has Everyone On Reddit Saying "SAME"

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We’ve probably all done it at some point: You’ve just gotten home; it’s late at night; your house is otherwise empty; and yet, when you go into the bathroom… you immediately check behind the shower curtain for a serial killer. Just, y’know, in case. Of course, not all of us make it a habit to do so — but a lot more of us than you probably think do, as a recent AskReddit thread underlined. The thread, which was posted by Redditor u/sehrish332 on Thursday, asked Redditors who check behind the shower curtain whenever they enter a bathroom what their plan is if they ever actually find a serial killer hiding there — and with over 5,500 comments currently posted, it’s clear that making sure someone nefarious isn’t lurking in your shower is something a good deal of us do on a regular basis.

My initial thought upon seeing the title of the thread was this: I am SO RELIEVED I am not the only one who does this. Do I have any reason to suspect that a serial killer might be hiding behind my shower curtain?Of course not. Yes, I realize that there are roughly between 25 and 50 active serial killers in the United States right now — which is honestly kind of a lot (just imagine 50 Ted Bundys running around the country simultaneously and it’ll start to seem like a lot to you, too) — but the odds of one having gotten into my apartment without me knowing are slim, given that I work from home and am also kind of a hermit. (In borrowed words, I’m always home. I’m uncool.) And yet! I still check.

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And, it turns out, there are reasons why everyone who’s in this weird and irrational boat with me does it, too. In a piece about the psychology of irrational fears published by The Atlantic in 2014, Olga Khazan detailed a few a few of them: First, humans sometimes have trouble putting rational fears into context, which can cause us to be more afraid of things that probably won’t hurt us (like serial killers hiding in the shower) than things that are statistically much more likely to hurt to hurt us (car crashes, for example); and second, we fear what we can’t control. The idea of a murderer hiding in a place where we're typically at our most vulnerable taps into both of these psychological quirks.

Interestingly, my own strategy for fighting the whole serial-killer-hiding-in-the-shower conundrum can be seen as an attempt to exert control over a situation in which I might not otherwise have it: I usually try just not to keep the shower curtain closed in the first place. Serial killers can’t hide behind your curtain if it’s always open. (Fighting off mildew, meanwhile, is clearly low on my list of priorities.)

As for how others think they’d deal with the same situation? Well, let’s have a look at some of the most notable and/or creative answers. Is your strategy on the list? Head on over to AskReddit for more. Who knows? Maybe you’ll think up some new ideas while you’re there.

It never hurts to be prepared.

1An Alternative Technique

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Ah, the old push-and-duck trick. Works every time. I think. I mean, I haven’t actually tried it; nor have I heard of anyone successfully escaping a serial killer hiding behind a curtain using it. But it sounds more effective than just whipping back the curtain and coming face-to-face with your worst fear.

2An Anecdote

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In this case, the answer to the actual question posed by the thread is, “Grab a knife and confront whatever may or may not be hiding in the shower” — but the full story is so much more than that.

3If You Can’t Beat ‘Em…

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As another Redditor put it, “A risky move, but a move I respect.”

4Shrodinger’s Murder

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For those of you wondering about the efficacy of this strategy, there’s an answer to that question, too:

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I… don’t really think that’s how it works, but I’ll accept it.

5Wait. Strike That. Reverse It.

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When you think about it, the reverse situation — being found by a serial killer while you’re in the shower — is a lot more concerning. There’s a reason Psycho frightens so many people, you know?

6Loony Tunes-Style

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Or, alternatively:

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Nailed it.

7Functional Interior Design

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This comment was actually posted in response to something a bit tangential; one Redditor wrote not about checking the shower curtain in the bathroom, but checking their condo more generally. “I live on the 9th floor of a condo building. There's only one entrance to my apartment … and that entrance is always locked, whether I'm home or not. So if someone broke into my apartment, it would be pretty obvious,” wrote the Redditor. “Nevertheless, sometimes when I come home I'll get a weird feeling, like maybe there's somebody here... so I'll take out my pocket knife and start checking the rooms. Always make sure to check behind the doors!” Redditor u/Jarnbjorn clearly feels the same way.

But, I mean… grabbing a sword off the wall is probably effective in many different situations, including bathroom serial killer checks. Heck, why not go the extra mile and hang the sword directly on your bathroom wall? Easy access is key.

8Embrace Your Inner Dexter Morgan

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It helps if you have a code.

10Simple, Yet Effective

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Nothing stops a person in their tracks quite like getting caught in a cold shower.

11The Obvious Answer

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Let’s face it: This is probably what most of us would actually do if thrust into this particular situation. Because the reality of this thread is this:

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Related:

12Knowledge Is Power

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I mean... same.