* ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'':
** [[spoiler:Eren's mother, Carla]]. Watching her son and [[HappilyAdopted adopted daughter]] desperately trying to save her when she's trapped under the remains of their house, legs crushed and unable to run. Then, having to force them to flee with them, only to regret it in the fearful realization that ''she is about to die''. [[PleaseDontLeaveMe She wants them to come back.]] [[spoiler:And Carla then covers her mouth, so she won't say it openly before kicking it.]] How [[spoiler:Eren]] must have felt; watching poor [[spoiler:Carla]] die right in front of him because he didn't have the strength to help her, and realizing the last thing he did before all this was have a huge fight with her...
** The soldiers spend all their time boozing because the Wall protects everyone and they're convinced they can handle things if the Titans did come in, only for the emergency they've been trained for to occur and they realize they're not only unprepared, ''but scared out of their mind at the thought of dying.''
** Mikasa's {{b|reakTheCutie}}ackstory. She was [[spoiler:enjoying a normal morning with her happy family, only for strange men to show up and kill her father, and intend [[SexSlave to harm]] her and her mother.]] And it's all from her perspective. Then, [[spoiler: almost the same thing happens ''again'' one year later with her adoptive mother (the aforementioned Carla) being eaten by a Titan and her adoptive father disappearing to parts unknown. So, in less than two years, she lost ''four'' parents and only has her adoptive brother Eren to desperately cling to now.]]
** Deliberately invoked by Dot Pixis during the Battle of Trost where soldiers want to desert and spend their final moments with their loved ones. He told them they could leave, if they wanted their loved ones to experience the same kind of fear the Titans gave them. A father just about to leave imagines his beloved daughter screaming as a Titan picks her up. He and other would-be deserters return and go back into the fight.
* ''VisualNovel/RoboticsNotes'' has a few.
** [[spoiler:Mizuka's]] death was pretty tragic, especially when you watch Kaito desperately doing everything in his power to try and save her.
** Akiho and Misa. An older sibling has cut off ties from their family with no explanation and ignores any and all attempts at contact, and the last conversation they had with the younger was them [[BreakTheCutie calling her plain and saying she'd never accomplish anything.]] Then it's revealed [[spoiler:she's being manipulated by someone else who is forcing her to cooperate by threatening the lives of everyone she cares about]].
* ''Franchise/CodeGeass'' has a couple notable ones. Lelouch and Cornelia are half-siblings from opposite sides of the conflict, with one thing in common: they both have full-blooded younger sisters, Nunnally and Euphemia, over who they would freak out if anything were to happen to them. In Lelouch's case this is VERY effectively invoked by Mao, who kidnaps Nunnally ''twice'' to catch his attention.
* ''Manga/KotouraSan'': Haruka's backstory includes [[spoiler:having her mother, who [[ParentsAsPeople once tried to help her with her problems]] but ultimately couldn't cope with them, [[ParentalAbandonment callously abandon her]] in front of her grandfather and saying she wished she never gave birth to her]]. And we learn that this is after [[spoiler: Haruka's father utterly refused to help them either and then walked out on them]]! It's utterly heartbreaking.
* Here's one courtesy of ''Manga/DeathNote'': What if a new serial killer arose, more prolific than any killer before him... and that killer turned out to be ''your son?'' Doubling up on the Adult Fear: On top of all of that, it's the parent's responsibility now to capture this serial killer so that he can be put to death. Poor Soichiro...
* Taken on by the WhatDoTheyFearEpisode of ''Anime/FullMetalPanicFumoffu''. Since Sousuke grew up in a war zone, he's completely unfazed by the spooky atmosphere of the AbandonedHospital, and dismisses ghostly apparitions and a blood-drenched CreepyChild as not threatening enough to worry about. What ''does'' shake his composure is the thought that Kaname, his charge, has been seriously injured or even killed after falling through the floor.
* ''Anime/GraveOfTheFireflies'': Protagonist kids Seita and Setsuko are orphaned during wartime and have heart-wrenching difficulty in surviving afterwards, especially after they run away from their aunt who doesn't really care. Things like sucking on little stones and imagining they are food.
* ''BitterVirgin'' features the rarely brought up topic of miscarriage. It also features the life of a girl whose stepfather raped her while her mother was in complete denial when told about it (to the point of thinking her daughter was lying to cover up who she was sleeping with), until the poor girl got pregnant for the second time.
* ''Manga/OnePiece'':
** Brook. In a rare case of a main character who was middle-aged in his flashback, instead of the usual childhood traumas we got the story of a parent/authority figure losing friends and loved ones to tragedy and bad decisions, finally ending up old and alone.
** Shanks, possibly the most easygoing character in the series, outright ''panics'' when Luffy is stolen out of his sight by a lowlife.
** What happened to [[spoiler:Boa Hancock and her sisters, Sandersonia and Marigold]] in their past. [[spoiler:At a very young age, they were the junior members of a Kuja ship's crew... and once their older shipmates and caretakers simply took their eyes off the three pre-teen girls for mere minutes, they were kidnapped and then sold into slavery. It took them ''years'' to come back home... and they remain scarred, both physically and mentally, by the experience right up to the present day. Merely recalling the HELL they lived through can these three ''very'' badass women to tears. (And in Marigold's case, to a screaming HeroicBSOD)]]
** Luffy, Ace, and Dragon turning into pirates despite trying to raise them as marines could be a parental failure fear for Garp. [[spoiler:Even worse when Ace actually ''dies'', and Garp has to ask Sengoku to pin him down so he won't go straight towards his killer to get {{revenge}}.]]
** The Punk Hazard arc may have the worst case of this. Parents on the islands near Punk Hazard are told by a [[TheMole Mole]] in the Marines that their children suddenly died in accidents while they were out playing. In reality, they are being abducted for use in human experimentation which is poisoning them slowly to death.
* ''Anime/{{Monster}}'': Johan will [[MindRape rape your mind]], [[DrivenToSuicide drive you to suicide]], and [[DissonantSerenity smile through it all]]. [[WouldHurtAChild It's even worse that he has no compunctions about doing this to children.]] Worse yet, Tenma has to not only live with the fact that Johan lives because of his own hand, but he is wanted by the police, as nobody except Johan's sister believes or knows Johan exists, meaning Tenma is suspect number one for the murders.
* ''VisualNovel/UminekoNoNakuKoroNi'': Done in the fifth arc, with [[spoiler:all of the Ushiromiya children except for Battler being killed off on the First Twilight. And then Battler in the sixth arc. Poor Rudolf.]]
* ''GameXRush'': The deep backstories. Abandonment of a child, severe and prolonged physical abuse by foster parents, near-insane idolization of a psychotic "mother" who uses said child as an excuse to kill... And that's just one of the main characters. The other involves severe and prolonged domestic abuse, accidental arson, murder of one parent in front of the child's eyes.
* ''Manga/{{Bokurano}}'' can be boiled down to Adult Fear. [[spoiler:A young child is going to die and there is nothing their parent can do to stop it]].
* ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha''
** The ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaStrikerS'' finale began with the simple yet real fear of [[spoiler:losing your child because you were away when they needed you most - like it happened to Nanoha, Fate, and Vivio]].
** [[spoiler:Genya Nakajima's elder daughter, Ginga, is kidnapped and his younger daughter Subaru gets hospitalized. In the third Sound Stage of the series, he approaches her and recommends that she withdraw from the case, emphasizing how hard it is on her, but is willing to accept her decision to continue. When you consider that his wife was killed in the line of duty, it's easy to see that he fears losing Subaru too. (Thank God Subaru manages to rescue Ginga, but still)]].
** The source of the problem in ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha TheMovie 1st'' was based on another one. Namely, what if the people in charge cared more about conserving time and money than making sure that the power plants they built were safe, [[IgnoredExpert to the point of ignoring concerns raised by their own engineers]]? [[spoiler: One of said engineers being the still sane Precia Testarossa.]] In a case of HarsherInHindsight, these fears turned into reality one year after the movie was released, when the Fukushima Nuclear Plant disaster happened and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fukushima_Daiichi_nuclear_disaster#Safety_issues investigations showed that it could have been avoided had officials taken the safety concerns raised by its own experts more seriously]].
** Hayate's plight in ''[[Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaAs A's]]'' is another; she has been [[IllGirl sick for a long time]], and seemingly wonders if she'll die soon, but doesn't fear it because she's always been alone. [[spoiler:And Graham believes that sealing her away with the Book of Darkness is regrettable, but in that case, few will miss her]].
* ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'':
** Satoko's EvilUncle Teppei. Made worse in Tatarogoroshi-hen by [[spoiler:Satoko having [[HatePlague Hinamizawa Syndrome]].]]
** The older children are victims. For example, a once happy child becomes withdrawn and paranoid -- even violent -- while their parents watch unable to do anything.
** Questioning your friendship with others and not being able to trust each other? Even if evil spirits and [[spoiler:conspiracies]] aren't involved, that is still unsettling.
* The otherwise incredibly lighthearted ''Manga/MinamiKe'' does one in the last episode when they find [[spoiler:what appears to be Kana's suicide note]].
* ''TigerAndBunny'':
** Kotetsu/Wild Tiger is a father in canon and therefore he ''really'' hates the mere idea of children being in any kind of danger. [[spoiler:Worse still, in the second episode his daughter Kaede ends up in danger, and Tiger is not ''quite'' quick enough to rescue her. Fortunately, Barnaby saves her life in the nick of time.]]
** Episode 15 brings a new Adult Fear for Kotetsu. Namely, [[spoiler:the possibility of having a rare, progressive condition that will force him to give up what he loves most]].
** Ivan is a teenager, but he still has to face the fear of not having been able to help his friend when he needed him the most. [[spoiler:Now said friend, Edward, is a supervillain.]]
** Barnaby has to face a huge one later in the series: [[spoiler:his parents' '''real''' murderer was... Maverick, his former ParentalSubstitute. So during a good part of his life, he has been raised ''by the guy who killed his mom and dad'', and a good part of his whole identity [[MindRape is based on]] ''[[MindRape lies]]''.]]
** The moment where [[spoiler:Maverick]] pats Kaede's head. The simple idea of what he [[MindControl could do]] to her gave the fanbase itself a major freak out.
** All friends and colleagues suddenly forgetting who he is and then trying to terminate him for a crime he didn't commit is gutwrenching. It's one of the many reasons that [[spoiler:Maverick]] is pure evil.
* ''Manga/WolfGuyWolfenCrest'' is insanely good at this. Stalkers, rape, violence, school shootings...
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'':
** The way he lost his mother as a child left Ichigo unable to handle being powerless to protect those in danger. Villains often use this against him, culminating in one ArcVillain's mind-bending assault on his family leading Ichigo into an HeroicBSOD.
** Having made two separate vows to always protect his dead wife's younger sister and always uphold the law, Byakuya's left dumbfounded when Rukia's execution brings the two vows into conflict. Although he's forced to support the execution, his worst fear is eventually confirmed to be Rukia dying. When it's exploited in battle by an enemy that manipulates fear, Byakuya is left paralysed by terror and suffers the most brutal defeat in the story's history: his body is shredded [[FamilyUnfriendlyViolence so badly]], his torso is [[DeathOfAThousandCuts flayed]] open [[GoryDiscretionShot to the spine]].
** At only age 40, Ryuuken Ishida has outlived every member of his family save for his teenage son Uryuu. It's implied that he's given up everything he was raised to believe and cherish in order to protect Uryuu from their deadly family secrets.
* In ''ProjectARMS'', even though the ARMS teens are all actually raised by foster parents, they still are treated like the parents' own children. These parents then get to watch their children be attacked, nearly killed, and then get told "Hey, we have to leave for awhile and may not live, but we love you!"
** The Chapel children. They were all the result of a group of women being given, without their knowledge, drugs that altered the development their unborn children. Not only that, but the parents are unable to properly care for their children because ''they're all afraid of them''. [[spoiler:Worse, though the children take on adult roles in the town they run, it becomes evident that the kids still need the love and support of their parents.]]
* In ''Manga/FairyTail'', it's revealed that [[spoiler:Ur had been told by some researchers that her IllGirl daughter Ultear had died, when in reality, they kidnapped and experimented on the girl, causing her to become one of the villains and to hate her mother Ur because she has been led to believe that Ur hated and abandoned her.]]
** Jude Heartfilia may count as well. A few weeks after he reconciles with his estranged daughter, Lucy, and manages to get over the sudden death of his wife Layla, who Lucy is the spitting image of, [[spoiler:she and her friends are attacked and seemingly killed]]. Even worse when [[spoiler:Lucy returns and finds out that he's been sending her birthday presents every year since her disappearance... and then died a month before her return.]]
* In ''Anime/AshitaNoNadja'', [[spoiler:Colette Preminger]] experiences a terrible dose of this when she [[spoiler:wakes up from an illness-induced coma]], only to be told [[spoiler:by her retainers]] that [[spoiler:her baby daughter Nadja had died of the same sickness that almost killed Colette herself. (Complete with a heartbreaking scene where Colette rushes to Nadja's wooden crib and finds it empty, collapsing in tears). In reality, Nadja had been sent away to an English orphanage to trick Colette into coming back home to her clan. And both mother and daughter only learn of the whole deal ''thirteen years later''. (No wonder Colette gets '''pisse''' at her father, the one to blame for this, when she learns the whole truth)]].
** Also, what if a person you care immensely for is mistakenly blamed for something ''you'' commited, is about to go to jail for it... and refuses to clear up his/her name to protect you? [[spoiler: No wonder Keith almost snaps when Francis is willing to pull a TwinSwitch when ''he's accused of the thefts Keith commited as a GentlemanThief''.]]
* In the climax of ''Anime/MyNeighborTotoro'', Mei has a fight with he sister Satsuki, and runs away to go to the hospital and give Mama the fresh produce from their garden herself. Mei is four. She does not know the way. She gets lost. ''Nobody knows where she is.'' Literally ''everybody in town'' goes out to search for her, [[NeverSayDie fearing the worst]].
** One moment within the "searching for Mei" sequence stands out: The neighbors find a little girl's sandal in a pond, and show it to Satsuki. [[NeverSayDie Nobody ever says it]], but the obvious implication is ''they're afraid Mei drowned in the pond''. [[spoiler: It's not Mei's sandal, and she hasn't drowned.]]
* In ''Manga/RurouniKenshin: Ishin Shishi e no Requiem'', Yahiko [[spoiler:runs away to join the rebels that were trying to overthrow the Meiji government, since his father died in a similar rebellion years ago.]]. Kaoru, having no idea where Yahiko had disappeared to, is frantic. When [[spoiler:Yahiko is ultimately left behind by the rebels and comes back to the dojo]], poor [[{{Tsundere}} Kaoru]] greets him with [[AngerBornOfWorry a slap to the face and then proceeds to sob into him]]. Kenshin immediately tells Yahiko that, had Kaoru not slapped him, he would've done that himself.
** The Jinchuu arc is a horrifyingly well-done attempt by [[spoiler:Enishi]] to use this on Kenshin. [[spoiler:So Kenshin wasn't able to protect his first wife Tomoe and the mere possibility of losing his girlfriend Kaoru terrifies him? Now Tomoe's vengeful brother deliberately exploits this fear to make Kenshin believe Kaoru has been bloodily murdered by him, thus making him revive these horrible memories. And Kenshin almost crosses the DespairEventHorizon after ''that''.]]
** The PsychologicalHorror implications of [[spoiler:Saitou going to the Kamiya dojo behind Kenshin's back]] brings out the Adult Fear card with incredible strength. Think about it: [[spoiler:''he could've killed everyone there easily if he wanted to'', and Kenshin wouldn't have been able to do anything.]] When Kenshin put two and two together, he almost had an HeroicBSOD.
** Played horrifyingly straight in [[spoiler:Anji Yukyuzan]]'s backstory. [[spoiler:The moment he left his old temple to meditate under a waterfall... it was the moment when he was beaten bloody by the local townspeople and said temple was burned to the ground. ''With Anji's adopted children inside''. The [[BreakTheCutie terrible psychological consequences]] lead him to his FaceHeelTurn.]]
* Chapter 501 and beyond of ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' has [[spoiler:Tobi threatening a newly born Naruto as an ultimatum to Minato and Kushina. After Tobi extracts the Kyubi from her, Kushina is left facing the reality that she will not live to see her son grow up. ''On top of that'', her and Minato die knowing that they're dooming their child to a lifetime of suffering and lonliness, unable to protect him from the fox, Tobi or the taunts of the villagers.]].
** [[spoiler: And later Minato is revived to help his son in the war against Tobi...only to learn that Tobi is not really Madara, as he thought he was, but is actually his [[MyGreatestFailure presumed deceased student Obito, who was driven mad as a result of Rin's death, Minato's other student that Obito was in love with which Minato also failed to protect, and months of being influenced by the real Madara.]] The look on poor Minato's face when he realizes this and puts all the pieces together is heartbreaking, as he could have avoided all this by managing to save at least one of his students, or realizing sooner that Tobi was Obito and stopping him himself.]]
** And later, we have this: [[spoiler:Your eldest son, whom you love and raised/trained? He's commissioned with killing you and your spouse. And ''everyone else in your family''. And when he comes for you, '''you clearly know it''', as well as how said son is suffering for it. Your only option is to tell him "well, our deal suck, but go ahead and kill us if that's what you truly have to do. We love you no matter what".]]
** And yet another example, pulled from a pre-Five Great Nations flashback: [[spoiler:Back in the old days, the war meant that ''everyone'' fought. The series was already known for having ChildSoldiers running around willy-nilly, but at least they're trained for combat and start out as civil servants/citizen soldiers--in the bad old days, this kind of thing amounted to ''seven-year-olds'' being declared shinobi, stuffed in armor and sent to the front lines. It's exemplified by how, when Hashirama Senju and Madara Uchiha's fathers met on the battlefield with their sons in tow, [[NightmareFuel each adult's reaction was to]] ''[[NightmareFuel immediately]]'' [[NightmareFuel go for the other's kids]]. [[WarIsHell Morality? What's that]]?]]
** And lest we forget that Orochimaru has experimented on '''children''' before. '''''Fifty-nine''''' of which were '''''newborn infants...'''''
* In ''Manga/ZombieLoan'', minor character Sougiya is a single father trying to pay off his contract to the Z-Loan. He knows that if he isn't able to keep his end of the contract, he will die and then no one will be left to take care of his young daughter.
* ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica''. One girl has gone missing, another girl found dead, and their friend is very troubled by all that- but refuses any help from anyone. The mother of the latter is seen in the 11th episode, and doesn't cry because she tries to assure herself that the girl can probably handle the stress given enough time. Her mother must have felt powerless and desperate, seeing her once cheerful and gentle daughter grow so distant and detached.
** Say, has your (insert: daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, cousin, student, neighbor, friend, friend's sister, classmate, etc.) been acting distant or evasive? Coming and going at all hours? Maybe one day she'll simply never come home, and even if you call the police, no one will ever find her or any sign of what happened to her.
* In the ''Manga/CardcaptorSakura'' anime, there's the episode in which Sakura accidentally destroys her dad's laptop in which he had stored all the research he had being working for days without sleep. The whole scene is played in an actual heartbreaking way, as she realizes this is something she simply has no way to fix.
* In ''HiganbanaNoSakuYoruNi'', [[ShrinkingViolet Marie]] is sexually abused and blackmailed by her teacher, who tells her that no one would believe her if she told. And then [[spoiler:said teacher ''murders'' her when she finally threatens to tell someone.]]
* Invoked in a flashback in ''Manga/FruitsBasket''. Tohru's mother Kyouko comes from an abusive household where her parents heavily neglected her [[spoiler:and kicked her out of home right before her then-counselor and later-husband Katsuya came to ask them for marriage approval]], so once she finds out she's carrying a baby, she has a HeroicBSOD due to being terrified that her relationship with Tohru would go the way of hers with her own mother.
** For a double-hitter, while Kyoko is a good mother to Tohru, she [[PosthumousCharacter dies not long before the series starts]]. Her last thoughts, as she lies bleeding to death in the road, are complete panic at the idea that her daughter will be left all alone and uncared for. This carries over to Hanajima and Uotani (who are Tohru's friends, but also act as surrogate parents at times), who are shocked to learn that while they thought Tohru was living with relatives, she'd spent a week living in a tent. Specially considering that Tohru's only relatives come from Kazuya's side... and save for her grandfather, ''they all hate her''. (And when she has to stay with them for a while, they treat her like absolute shit.)
** There's also the ''massive'' amounts of abuse in general, and ''specially'' child abuse/neglection, both physical and psychological. Most of the characters are able to escape or overcome it by the end of the series, but it's still horrifying, especially considering how well most of it is covered up. And it's made even worse when [[spoiler:the biggest of the abusers... turns out to have been [[TroubledAbuser one of the most abused victims]]. [[EvilIsPetty For a really selfish and petty reason, too]].]]
* ''Manga/DetectiveConan'' has several things involving Conan or other children being in danger. Conan has been held at gunpoint or knifepoint by a murderer or taken hostage several times, has been shot at least once, and more than once said murderer would have no problem [[HeKnowsTooMuch silencing Conan or another child]] for being witnesses.
** ''Many'' cases have children or teenagers as either victims of murder/injury/etc., or as [[HarmfulToMinors witnesses]] of murder/injury/etc.. In the first case types, someone whom they loved will kill to attempt to kill the {{Asshole Victim}}s as punishment; in the second ones, the now grown-up victims will exact revenge ''themselves''.
** The 15th movie has [[spoiler:Conan being BuriedAlive under an avalanche and everyone rushing to find him before he runs out of air]]. And said movie has the attempts on the life of [[TraumaInducedAmnesia an amnesiac fifteen-year-old boy]] as one of the biggest plot points.
** Also there's the fourth movie, ''Captured In Her Eyes'', where [[spoiler:Ran, the one who [[TeamMom always takes care of Conan]] [[ChildrenRaiseYou and Kogoro]], is struck with TraumaInducedAmnesia and can barely handle herself]]. Seeing someone who has always been there for you need help desperately, but you can barely do anything for them... '''ack.'''
** There's the Murdered Stage Magician case. [[spoiler:The victim's six-year-old daughter, whom the killer sort-of used to make the victim surrender to him so they could kill him? The little girl has disappeared. ''And the murderer is the one who has her''. It's a BIG relief when said killer brings her back unharmed.]]
** The premise of the series in general is this. You're in a place that should be very public and friendly, only to be attacked and nearly killed. You cheerfully go off somewhere alone and promise to meet your best friend later, only to all but vanish for [[ComicBookTime who-knows-how-long]]. Against all odds you manage to survive something that should have been fatal, only to find that you can't go back to your old life. Instead, you have to watch as your friends cry and wonder where you are, while you ''can't say a thing to them''. Because if you do, ''they will be targeted by the same evil group that did this shit to you''.
** The ''Broadcast of Love'' case has a person ([[spoiler: Takagi]]) not only being kidnapped and placed inside a really cruel DeathTrap, but [[ForcedtoWatch having his completely helpless and vulnerable image]] broadcasted live to his friends and co-workers, one of them being ''his girlfriend''. And from them on they have to race against the clock to find the victim before either the trap is fatally activated...
* ''FantasticChildren'': A 5-year-old child just disappeared without a trace and 6 years later his/her corpse was found amongst other children's. [[spoiler:There have been many parents who had to experience this throughout history since the 15th century]]. In one of the cases of missing children the police refuse to pursue the case further and conclude that the child left on his own, using his then 3-year-old sister's words for their convenience.
* ''Anime/NowAndThenHereAndThere'' showed us the dangers of a child left alone in a foreign land.
** [[FridgeHorror It gets worse]] thinking about [[spoiler:Sara]] in the end. She may be trying to show the kids of this hellscape that there's always some glimmer of hope out there...but as far as her parents back home know, she was probably kidnapped, murdered, and disposed in some remote location.
* This happens in ''WanderingSon'' from time to time. Imagine your nine year old daughter goes to the local city without telling you, dressed as a boy, and the first thing that happens is she's hit on by a an adult. To make matters worse she and her friend go around hanging with them, even sleeping over at their house and being gone all day, without telling you. Thankfully [[CoolBigSis Yuki is nothing but a playful tease]] and she would '''never''' let any harm happen to either child, but..
* ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' occasionally relies on Adult Fear. ''PokemonSpecial'' and ''PhantomThiefPokemon7'' in particular prey on the "What if your young child is kidnapped and they can't be found?" fear.
** Interestingly enough, ''Pokemon Special'' has this fear belong to one of the main ''villains'', [[spoiler:Giovanni]] - his son was abducted, and at least one of his villainous schemes even stems from his desire to find him. It also briefly plays on the fear that, after you've been separated from your child for so long, they might not like you or want anything to do with you now that you've re-entered their life - because while he eventually comes around and accepts his father, deciding to involve him in his life, [[spoiler:Silver]] initially rants about how unfair it is that he'll never have a perfect family and that he can't possibly accept that his father is such a renown criminal (while [[spoiler:Giovanni]] is in the same room, in perfect hearing distance, though unconscious).
** In ''Theatre/PokemonLive'', Delia is scared of Ash confronting Team Rocket, not only because of the fear that he might be hurt, but because she used to date Giovanni and doesn't know how he'll take the news. It's implied she worries he'll ''hate'' her like he does the rest of Team Rocket.
* ''SpiritedAway'' has one scene where Yubaba frantically searches her son's room while believing he's been kidnapped.
** Chihiro's situation in general is pretty terrifying, especially when she's first lost in the world of the spirits. Her parents have been captured and left in a position where it's impossible to help her and she's stranded in a hostile world where everyone, except for one person, thinks she's naturally lazy, stupid, and greedy, like [[FantasticRacism they think most humans are]]. Until she reaches Yubaba and gets a job, she has to sneak around and has no idea if the people she interacts with will betray her or not. Oh, and the one ally she has? Between his shifts in personality and warnings from others, Chihiro wonders if he really is her friend or if he'll betray her to Yubaba.
* Ryuunosuke and Caster in ''LightNovel/FateZero'' are '''serial child murderers''' who like to give their victims a HopeSpot before brutally killing them. In one episode, you even see a memorial service for one of the victims, who happens to be one of little Rin's classmates. It's just a single photo frame, and you hear someone mention that they coundn't do a proper burial because the body was too mangled. It gets so bad that, in-universe, a reward is offered to whoever can kill Caster first, and the ''entire Holy Grail War'' is put on hold until then. Cue nearly everyone doing an EnemyMine to take these two down.
** Really, REALLY not helped by [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilles_de_Rais who *this* Caster really is]]. TakeOurWordForIt. ''Please''.
* In ''Kodomo no Jikan'', despite [[WifeHusbandry all]] [[KissingCousins Reiji's]] [[{{Yandere}} faults]], when Rin is in any danger, real or imaginary, he really freaks out. On the other hand, Reiji himself is no small cause of nightmares, with his disturbing and unhealthy interest in Rin.
* While it's generally PlayedForLaughs, it's heavily implied in ''Manga/AxisPowersHetalia'' that the nations have no choice but to obey their bosses, meaning that the characters all live in a world where their best friends or even family members could turn on them in an instant. When the series was in its webcomic format, it was played ''very'' seriously in [[http://hetalia.livejournal.com/2977183.html the story of China and Japan]]. China raises Japan and considers him a little brother, only for Japan to show up in the middle of the night and attack China with a katana. China has ''no idea at all'' this is coming, and is inviting Japan inside for some food when the blade is drawn.
* The core of ''Manga/AyashiNoCeres'' is this. [[spoiler:A woman's kind and endearing husband becomes [[CrazyJealousGuy so obsessed]] [[{{Yandere}} with her]] that he starts restricting her behavior, like locking her in the house to prevent her from talking to men who aren't him, to beating her, forcing sex on her, and going so far as to [[OffingTheOffspring killing one of their kids]] out of fear that the little girl would take her (Ceres) away from him (Mikage).]] This manga is a story of [[spoiler:DomesticAbuse.]]
** And on the anime side: after a disastrous mission, a very pregnant Aya comes home to an empty apartment. Her boyfriend [[spoiler:Toya]]'s shoes are by the door, his toothbrush is in a cup by the sink, his mug is on the counter, but he's not there, and he'll never be again. That's gotta be pretty high up the list of Adult Fears for most of us--having to come home to all the memories alone.
* ''Anime/WelcomeToTheNHK'' presents its viewers the consequences of being a hikkikomori for the rest of your life: Growing old, ugly, still living with your parents until they die and eventually homelessness.
** On Yamazaki's side, it's the fear that your dreams and aspirations are futile and you shouldn't even bother because, like it or not, your life has already been decided.
** With Hitomi, it's the fear that her life has no meaning. With Megumi, it's constantly being exploited by con artists and desperately searching ways to make income to support yourself and a parasitic relative.
* ''Manga/{{Life}}'' is just full of this. The manga centers around bullying and self-harm. After her friend betrays her in a jealous rage Ayumu begins to cut herself. Once she enters high school she meets a girl who acts like her friend but turns out to be a bully in disguise. None of her family members know about her turmoils. To make matters worse, the teachers try their best to downplay the bullying and make it seem like nothing is wrong.
* Kousei's mother's concern from ''Manga/ShigatsuWaKimiNoUso'' are about how he will be able to live decently without source of income and parental advices after she were dead and while her busy husband is away with business.
** Also, one of the RealLife parents nightmare is [[spoiler:having their only child succumbing with terminal illness that would claim his/her live in young age, like Kaori.]]
* In ''Digimon'' each season has one or more adult fear aspects to it especially in Adventure.
** ''Anime/DigimonAdventure'': Your child/brother/sister/friend leaves home to risk their life in battle, and all you can do is stay at home, far away from them, and pray for the best.
** ''Anime/DigimonAdventure02'': [[spoiler:Your oldest son dies in a car accident at the age of 7 and then his younger brother starts getting a lot better at school and sports, similar to how his brother was, and while years later he is considered a teen celebrity because of his talents he isn't quite himself anymore and he has been getting more and more distant lately. Then one day he dissappears after leaving a note that almost sounds like he may be attempting suicide -- and when he finally does come home weeks later from who knows where, he has no idea who you are anymore, and it takes him a LOT to actually remember and start acting mildly functional from then on.]] Later on [[spoiler: lonely little children start being approached by strange looking adults, and when they come home they seem different and more violent then they used to be.]]
* In the ''VideoGame/StreetFighterIV'' OAV ''[[Anime/StreetFighterIVTheTiesThatBind The Ties that Bind]]'', [[spoiler:Ken and to a lesser extent Guile]] are slapped to the face with this when [[spoiler:Ken's wife/Guile's sister in law Eliza disappears.]] It's worse when [[spoiler:it turns out she was kidnapped. By Crimson Viper. Who, at the start, had posed as a HotScoop who had just spoken to Ken himself. Moreso, ''Eliza has just found out that she's pregnant''.]] The imaginery of [[spoiler:Ken speaking to Viper on the phone while the camera pans to a couch that has Eliza's knitting stuff on it ''and'' to [[EmpathyDollShot a small doll that sits on the fireplace]] ]] is pretty powerful.
** Another character starts losing [[spoiler: his]] own identity, completely snaps at some point under the pressure, and almost harms a person whom [[spoiler: he]] cares a lot for ''and'' who's trying to help him through his crisis. [[spoiler: That character is none other than Ryu. For SplitPersonalityTakeover reasons, but still - it's damn heartbreaking to see [[NiceGuy the always kind and serious]] [[SpiritedCompetitor Ryu]] [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone realising what he had already done and then was about to do]] [[MoralityPet to Sakura]], [[HeroicBSOD and almost shutting down as a result]]...]]
* ''Manga/ElfenLied''. Well, too many things to list, so lets just go with bloody [[NoNameGiven Unknown Man]]. He's sadist, a rapist, a murderer, and a child molester, and he nearly has his way with a rape victim name Mayu.
** Mayu's stepfather, who molested her repeatedly, and her mother did nothing to stop him. Result is she runs away with nobody to care about her till she runs into Kouta and Yuka.
* ''Anime/PsychoPass'' has quite a few of these:
** The first episode has a rapist actually rape someone on-screen.
** Another episode has a man who has been the ButtMonkey for years at his job finally snap and go on a killing spree at work.
** One arc has an all women's college, where parents and students alike become terrified of a SerialKiller turning the girls who attend the school into deranged plastic art and killing them through the process. Turns out the SerialKiller was under everyone's noses the whole time ([[spoiler:the student and local MadArtist Rikako Oryou]]); this leaves almost everyone who knew her feeling betrayed and scared.
** [[WholeEpisodeFlashback Episode 12]] has [[spoiler:Yayoi]] finding out someone she loved was rebelling against society through music and Molotov Cocktails. The person in question was also implicated in murder.
*** Even worse in that episode is the first real insight into the conditions the asylums operate under. [[spoiler:Yayoi, in her cell, is locked away without access to the outside world, or anything to do to entertain herself, especially her beloved guitar. When she shows even the slightest bit of distress over what amount to her imprisonment, the room is gassed and the tannoy tells her to start calming down, and that doctors would be on their way to help her. The final situation is a place you are sent to where, if you show any free will, you're drugged into submission with cold, clinical efficiency.]]
** Episode 13 has [[spoiler:Akane]] dealing with the fallout of losing a friend, and then having to repeatedly relive the memories of watching a close friend die.
** One of the main characters is revealed to have had his father go insane with grief about his society and shame his family. [[spoiler:The character is Ginoza and his father is Masaoka, who now works under Ginoza.]]
** A death of a PosthumousCharacter turned [[spoiler:Shinya]] from an idealistic and law-abiding citizen to a despairing BloodKnight who is despised by society and is wracked with grief due to his friend dying.
** Episode 14 revolves around a woman being beaten to death in front of numerous citizens who do nothing. [[RealityIsUnrealistic Although some may think this is unrealistic]], this relates to a real-life phenomenon, the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bystander_Effect Bystander Effect]].
** [[WhamEpisode Episode 15]] plays on many AdultFear scenarios; like those who feel wronged by society violently attacking those who society has favoured, [[spoiler:crime sprees, people losing faith in society and law, mass riots]] and ultimately the threat of [[spoiler:societal breakdown]].
** Another WhamEpisode, Episode 16 shows what it could be like for your life to be potentially saved by someone you trusted and respected, [[spoiler:just for them to then kill you. [[KillTheCutie Poor Shusei]].]]
** Yet another WhamEpisode, Episode 18 shows what it could be like to [[spoiler:find out the police department and the government is not only highly corrupt, but will try to have you killed when they find out you know too much or even if they think you could be detrimental to their plans.]]
** Episode 19 discusses the possibility of [[spoiler:someone destroying the majority of the food supply in a country, reducing everyone to fighting over food just to survive. It also brings up the [[RealitySubtext current controversy over genetically-modified "Frankenfoods" and how easily they can be taken out by rapidly evolving germs]].]]
** Episode 21 shows [[spoiler:how a father can try to save his son who he has a bad relationship with, and then die in front of said son trying to prove he loves his son...and how he can die before his son can even acknowledge him as his Dad. The relationship between Masaoka and Ginoza was mostly professional, but Masaoka's last words show how he wished it was father and son. Ginoza afterwards seems to feel the same.]]
* ''{{Shiki}}'' has quite a few of these, among them:
** Watching your children or other relatives die while you are powerless to stop it;
** Having your family members threatened;
** Being rejected by everybody and dying completely alone;
** Having your friends and family turn on you, or having to turn on them;
** Dying horrifically and pointlessly owing to circumstances beyond your control;
** Losing everyone and everything you know and love;
** The idea that people, no matter how nice or friendly they may seem, ''will'' commit unspeakable acts of violence and depravity, if the chips are down
* In ''XamdLostMemories'', there's quite a bit of this. The clearest example is in how the teenage lead characters, for one reason or another, all end up having to leave their families behind to participate in the war effort. Their parents know that they are in danger and could get killed, but there's nothing they can do to stop it.
* ''Manga/MiraiNikki'':
** Yuno, who [[StalkerWithACrush stalks]] and [[{{Yandere}} obsesses over]] Yukiteru to the point of creeping him out. Mind you, real-life stalking and possessive lovers are NOT fun things to deal with.
*** Even worse when you learn ''why'' this particular possessive lover came to be. [[spoiler: She was massively abused by her ''very'' messed-up adoptive parents, and one single act of kindness from Yuki came right after she [[SelfMadeOrphan killed her parents]] [[TheDogBitesBack and abusers]] was enough for her [[BecauseYouwereNiceToMe to latch on him]] in despair.]]
** Tsubaki's [[RapeAsBackstory backstory]] can hit too close for comfort for victims of rape. And then she tries to [[spoiler:inflict the same gang-rape she suffered on Yuno, and does so to lure Yukiteru out. Yes, she may be an AxCrazy yandere, but no one deserves ''that''! Imagine being in Yukiteru's shoes, especually when he hears Yuno's terrified screams, and especially in the anime where she's [[ShamefulStrip stripped down to her underwear]] [[FanDisservice while resisting and screaming]]--poor Yukki has to witness the sight of that, but thankfully saves her in the nick of time.]]
* MutekiKanbanMusume: This series deserve a special mention because the protagonist, Miki, is a [[ManChild Woman Child]] and this is the first AdultFear she has had in all her life (she is 21): being fired from his job (she is TheSlacker) and thrown out to the street by his mother and replaced by TheReliableOne Kankuro, while TheRival mocks her.
* ''VisualNovel/SchoolDays'' will make you groan if you've ever had someone cheat on you, or had the fear of your romantic partner cheating on you. In one particular WhamEpisode, [[spoiler:Kotonoha scrambles to the school roof, excited to see her recently-hooked-up-with boyfriend Makoto, only to find out he's getting particularly dirty with Sekai. She has a ''very'' justifiably horrified face when she catches the two of them.]]
* In ''Anime/DragonballZ'' in the Saiyan Saga, Chi-Chi having no idea where Gohan was for a long period of time and having no way to contact him.
** Also, Goku and the others (Krillin, Bulma, and Master Roshi) watching Gohan (as a 4 year old) getting kidnapped by Raditz.
** Chi-Chi gets hit with this again in the Majin Buu saga, when she hears the three words she has been pouring her heart and soul into avoiding for ''17 years''.
--> '''Goku''': [[OutlivingOnesOffspring Gohan is dead]]. [[note]][[ComicallyMissingThePoint Actually, the line was "Gohan and Vegeta are dead", but he doesn't count]].[[/note]]
** Gohan gets his own when he grows up. After a traumatizing childhood where his mistakes have gotten people killed, [[Anime/DragonBallZBattleOfGods Battle of the Gods]] has him getting drunk and making a mistake that nearly gets his wife and daughter killed. He's ImmuneToBullets, but instead of catching them when he's shot at, he deflects them, only for the ricochet to hit Videl, who can be injured by bullets and who also happens to be, unbeknownst to Gohan, pregnant.
* Although he rarely expresses anything outside of arrogance and anger, [[Anime/YuGiOh Seto Kaiba]] himself has one. Whenever his brother's life is at stake, he's terrified he will lose him. Being orphaned at a young age and a ParentalSubstitute to Mokuba are good reasons why he'd be scared to lose the family he has.
* ''VisualNovel/{{Clannad}}'' utilizes several scenes very effectively such as when Nagisa is left standing in the rain after Tomoya basically ditched her. Given that she's been very prone to [[IllGirl being sick all her life]], usually to the point of missing LOTS of school (hell [[HeldBackInSchool it's practically a plot point]]), it's understandable when both [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone Tomoya]] and Nagisa's parents [[OhCrap freak when they realize this.]] There's another scene where [[spoiler: Kotomi's parents die]] and her [[PartingWordsRegret last words to them were "I hate you"]] [[spoiler: because this happened after quite a fight]]; her resulting breakdown is quite understandable. The last example here, and quite frankly the most emotionally moving, is when both [[spoiler: Nagisa and Ushio die, though at different parts of the series.]] Watching them slowly [[spoiler: die]] is gut-wrenchingly saddening, it's surprising your actual guts aren't all over the floor after the respective [[spoiler: characters die]]. Knowing that people you care about are [[spoiler: dying]] and not being able to do a single damn thing about it is something that is enough to make anybody give up on life [[spoiler: as what happened with Tomoya]], our battered BreakTheCutie scene that's been dragged through the proverbial mud much of [[spoiler: his]] life.
* The final arc of ''VisualNovel/{{AIR}}''. While its cause may be supernatural, the adult fear Haruko is made to confront is very real: that of [[spoiler: caring for a child through an incurable illness, knowing that she'll ultimately die no matter what you do for her]].
* The ending to ''Manga/SatouKashiNoDanganWaUchinukenai'' provides an example of this. Mokuzu [[spoiler:is murdered by her father. There were numerous signs that he was abusive but no one saved her. She had a permanent, painful limp due to a hip injury she received as a baby and had a ruptured ear drum which caused her to be partially deaf. Child services had been called on her father but she stood by them, and her mom left them. Even in her new town there were rumors he was abusive, some even wondering if he'd end up killing her one day, but still no police were involved.]] Mokuzu has absurd, outlandish behavior (such as saying she is a mermaid or randomly singing) but [[spoiler:no one saw it as related to abuse or a sign for help until it was too late]].
* In ''Manga/{{Cyborg 009}}'', the heroes were abducted and forcibly turned into cyborgs because they could easily disappear without it being noticed. Except for Francoise/003, none of them have friends or family in positions to report their kidnappings. (Speaking of 003, in the manga her older brother watches her being chloroformed and dragged into a car. He tries to save her, only to lose the chase because he happened to pick a plane that didn't have fuel in it.) Oh, and the Black Ghost operates on a global scale, so there's pretty much no chance of the various abductions being put together in some way to find a common thread.
** The series is centered around war and just how destructive it can be. The cyborgs see countless battles, both fictional and based on real life ones (like the Vietnam War in the manga, switched to African guerrilla actions in the recent series) and have to watch as people they bond with have their lives ruined over squabbles over power, land or money. African people like Pyunma/008 are sold into slavery, killed, or otherwise taken advantage of by imperialists. Native Americans like Geronimo/005 are forced to choose between poverty or turning themselves and their culture into a sideshow act for the amusement of others. Joe/009's life in Japanese society was more or less ruined from the start [[HalfBreedDiscrimination purely because of he's biracial.]] And while the protagonists agree that those issues are wrong and horrible and try to fight against them, even with superpowers there's often little they can '''actually''' do.
* Episode 11 of ''Manga/ICantUnderstandWhatMyHusbandIsSaying'' is one long case of this. Working a dead-end job while living alone (as depicted in Kaoru's flashback) is close to a living nightmare, and is an experience that all too many loners are familiar with.
* In ''Animation/GuardianFairyMichel'', while it has comedic tones, Kim's concern over Poyo playing with her gun is played straight--for good reason.
* Episode 3 ''Anime/RanpoKitanGameOfLaplace'', Watanuki kidnapping young girls from families so he could have his own children to raise. He has captured nine girls, and five of them have to suffer a horrific fate for refusing to acknowledge him as their new father. What's even worse is that even after he got released from jail, he's still searching for more girls to take....
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