I’m Scared in Korean

Hi guys, it’s your Korean teacher Jun. When do you get most scared? What makes you feel scared most? I’m pretty sure everybody has at least more than one thing that makes you scared. Then, how do native Koreans say I’m scared in Korean? Today, we are going to learn how say I’m scared in Korean and how you can use it so naturally!

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How To Say I’m Scared in Korean


I’m scared


Basic form : 무섭다
반말(informal non-honorific) form : 무서워
Negative form with 해요 speech style : 안무서워요


무서워요 is ‘to feel fear’ in Korean. It’s very similar to ‘be scared’ in English except few meanings that 무섭다 has. 무섭다 can mean ‘to be scary’. Technically, there is no way to distinguish which meaning it has in a sentence. You have to read a context. Sometimes, 무섭다 is more natural to translate as ‘to be afraid’.

To Be Scared vs To Be Scary

It can be ‘the man was scary’ or ‘the man was scared’ both. Of course, it can be way more clear by using more sentence components. When a sentence has 2 subjects at same time with 무섭다. A subject that has 은/는 marker always becomes the one who feels fear.


그 남자는 무서웠다
The man was 무섭다
= 무섭다 can be scary or scared both.


나는 그 남자가 무서웠다
I’m scared of him
= 나 has 은/는 marker so it became a subject who is scared.

How To Use

A: 이 영화 어때요?
How is this movie?
B: 그 영화 진짜 무서워요
That movie is really scary


A: 수영하러 갈래요?
Do you want to go to swim?
B: 저는 물이 무서워요
I’m scared of water


A: 저는 제 자신이 무서워요
I’m afraid of myself
B: 네? 왜요?
What? Why?
A: 저는 너무 똑똑한거 같아요
I think I’m too smart
B: 에휴…