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Traumafessions :: Reader KtBear on Disney World’s The Haunted Mansion

October 4th, 2009 by aunt john · 8 Comments

First of all, love your site! I’ve showed it to all my friends, and most of them couldn’t get past the first page, they were so scared! I’ve scoured almost 30 pages of this here web site, and haven’t seen one mention of Disney World’s The Haunted Mansion!

I remember when I just a wee child of probably about six my parents took me to Walt’s Florida escape, and they thought I was finally old enough to enjoy The Haunted Mansion. I was a little freaked out even going through the queue, but I managed to make it to the little room, which gave you the prologue to the actual ride. I was O.K. until the pictures in the room started moving and stretching to reveal some very horrifying images to a 6 year old!

I flipped out, and demanded my parents take me OUT of this ride immediately! Thankfully, there IS an emergency exit in this room, and I was escorted to safety.

Also, I never learned, until years later, what happens at the end of the picture stretching…the awful (and traumatizing) image of a man hanging himself right above you! Twenty-two years later, I’m not terrified anymore, but I still do feel a little uneasy in that little room. I hope I’m not the only one who spent years having nightmares because of WALT freakin’ DISNEY!

AUNT JOHN SEZ: Thanks for writing in KtBear! Although I have yet to physically step foot in any of the fine family theme parks owned by the Disney Corporation (I am more of a low-rent, Wildwood, NJ boardwalk kind of boy who’s going to take this opportunity to give a shout out to the now defunct Whacky Shack!), I have always been intrigued by The Haunted Mansion attraction.

I have spent countless hours lurking on DoomBuggies, drooled over the LP posted by Brother Bill at THE HAUNTED CLOSET, and most recently discovered the awesome design work of KEVIN KIDNEY. I reckon this all to say that if I were to have a bucket list of places I need to see before going to that malt shop in the sky, visiting The Haunted Mansion would be on there somewhere right above Dollywood, and maybe slightly below the Moscow Cat Museum.

Regarding trauma delivered at the hands of WALT DISNEY, you are definitely not alone! Just ask Lene, Carol, Jillcs, Vicar of VHS, me, and anyone else I might have overlooked (my apologies, in advance, to anyone who might fall into this neglected category).

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8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 LaDraculNo Gravatar // Oct 4, 2009 at 10:00 am

    I admit, I wasn’t so taken with it on my first trip to WDW in 1996, but reading up about how it was created made me like it even more…some aspects in the planning stages were taken from William Castle’s “13 Ghosts”.
    Of course, now they’ve made it scarier, by making the bride not the sad victim (As she was in the movie) but the ax murdering black widow. We do see this new one “Constance” in the portrait room as the content-looking lady, who is revealed to be sitting on one of her late husband’s tombstones.

  • 2 smidget28No Gravatar // Oct 4, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    I was terrified of this ride at 12…..yes, 12.  I was afraid of everything until I was in my 30s.

  • 3 Professor Von WhiskersenNo Gravatar // Oct 4, 2009 at 8:01 pm

    Loved the Haunted Mansion when I was a kid and I loved it a few years ago when Mickster and I went.  We probably rode it 3 or 4 times.
    Aunt John,  If you guys ever make it down to Dollywood, we expect to be notified, since we’ve been wanting to check it out eventually also.  Plus we’re only about 4 hours away.  I’m still mourning the loss of Opryland…

  • 4 aunt johnNo Gravatar // Oct 4, 2009 at 8:20 pm

    @Prof. V.W.: Is TWITTY CITY still in existence? I would be so into hitting up both places… just need to find a sitter for our cat army.

  • 5 micksterNo Gravatar // Oct 4, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    I was proud of myself not being frightened when Prof and I went through the Haunted Mansion. I was still experiencing trauma from my experience at Six Flags’ Horror Cave when I was four.
    @Aunt J: Twitty City would be awesome, BTW!

  • 6 mamamiasweetpeachesNo Gravatar // Oct 5, 2009 at 9:43 am

    Oh Hell yeah my older sisters made me go on the one in Floridaw when I was about 6 or 7. As soon as the walls seemed to grow I was like “Get me the Hell out of here!” I rode the whole thing with my eyes shut.

    Of course as a teen and a 20-somthing I went on the ride (in California) and liked it (I still prefer Its A Small World and Pirates O The carribean though)

    Because of my childhood traumas a I ALWAYS spare my daughter from going on these things. Theres a Harry Houdini-themed ride in the Jersey GREAT ADVENTURE that we went to go on – apparently theres a seance and the room moves – the second we walked in I looked for the Emergencvy Exit cuz I knew she’d flip out and demand to get out and as always I was right (my husband was furious!)

    Now as a 30-something adult I have to ask you people who have been to the Disney parks: Is that ALICE IN WONDERLAND ride creepy or is just me? I really think its a mix of it being so damn dark in there and the ride ending with someone screaming “OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!” at you!

  • 7 bjergyNo Gravatar // Oct 5, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    What a wonderful site.  I’ve been more than content until now to just read but after the love you gave to the gloriously trashy Wildwood Boardwalk I had to comment. I still shed a tear when I walk past the empty spot where the once proud Castle Dracula once stood.

  • 8 BlackwingroseNo Gravatar // Oct 5, 2009 at 3:47 pm

    I agree with you Mama that the Alice ride is creepy, which is why i enjoy it. I always insist on riding it alone, and I make myself look only straightforward, because if you do that and don’t move your eyes around the whole effect gets freakier. 🙂

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