to get quite irritated with people who claim to have a 'phobia' of something when they really don't?

(139 Posts)
extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 15:18:13

Inspired by a spider thread on another part of the site grin

Ok, I know that a phobia is somewhat subjective and affects everyone differently but it really gets on my nerves when people claim that they 'have a phobia' of something when what they really mean is 'I'm a bit scared of X' or 'I really don't like X'.

It isn't the same thing!

For example, I have a friend who claims to have a 'spider phobia' - she says she finds it hard to put a glass over them and take them outside, she gets all itchy afterwards.

Compare that to me who has an 'actual' phobia of spiders - recently I was in hysterical tears because there was a HUGE spider in the kitchen and DH had gone out. I could not deal with it myself, I couldn't even go near it, I phoned my friend at 11pm and begged him to get out of bed and remove it because I didn't know what else to do. When that didn't work I put a frantic message on facebook to everyone who knew me to come and help me, I was desperate!

I just think that for every person who claims to have a phobia of something who doesn't really it makes people less, I dunno, tolerant and understanding of people who genuinely do.

Like people who would scare you 'for a laugh', thinking its funny to trap you in a room with 'X' or shove 'X' in your face and then being all 'oh, I didn't think you'd react that badly' when you have a panic attack!

AIBU?

squeakytoy Fri 29-Mar-13 15:24:18

I am sure people have different levels of phobias.. it isnt a competition to see whose is worse than someone elses.

I dont like masks.. they actually terrify me and make me feel sick, but I can get on with daily life at halloween and other times when I know there will be lots of them in the shops and kids walking down the street wearing them. Some people wouldnt be able to cope.

Exactly...it is a fear when you have an aversion to something but can tolerate it, it is a phobia when that aversion is completely intolerable and impacts on your quality of life.

havingamadmoment Fri 29-Mar-13 15:29:34

I am terrified of prawns. People assume its that i dont want to eat them, its not just thatI dont want to look or even think about them. If dh were to eat a prawn I couldnt stay in the room - i may even actually feel like crying or being sick. I have NO idea why.My dad and stepmother (who is chinese and cooks chinese food like dumplingy things found it perfectly acceptable to hide a prawn in my food a few years ago because they were sure i would like it if i tried it. I didnt. In fact i cried and now i cannot face chinese at all stupid i know.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 15:30:29

No, it isn't a competion smile

Maybe my AIBU should actually be 'AIBU to think that when someone claims to have a phobia it should be treated as something serious and not something they should just be expected to 'deal with' or 'get over'

Have you ever had some 'funny' people scare you with masks on purpose, knowing that you are afraid of them?

That's what really winds me up!

fuzzysnout Fri 29-Mar-13 15:30:54

YANBU. Being 'a bit scared of something' is not a phobia.
I am afraid that it also irritates me that any adult who does not have a genuine phobia should make a pathetic fuss about something as ridiculous as a non poisonous small spider such as are generally found in UK homes. This may not be a popular view, but generally I think it is a ploy for male attention and it demeans women (and funnily enough, more often than not it is women) who behave like this and need 'rescuing' from the scarey spider.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 15:33:06

^Sorry, the masks question was aimed at squeaky!

That's exactly what I mean tak1ing!

Often phobias and your reactions to them are out of your control and I find it really insensitive when people roll their eyes at you and tell you to grow up smile

zwischenzug Fri 29-Mar-13 15:35:54

I've known people to say they had a phobia of beans and buttons. If you ask me they just say it to make themselves sound more interesting.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 15:36:46

I suppose the difficult thing is knowing the difference between someone who is making a fuss because they love the drama and want to be 'rescued' and who is genuinely terrified.

I am genuinely terrified, even of small non poisonous spiders - I have been rescued several times by women so is definately not a ploy for male attention in my case!

It doesn't really irritate me when pee say they have a phobia and they are a bit scared of something.
What annoys me is people minimising phobias, telling me to just get over mine. I see a psychiatrist, I am on anti depressants and I have therapy for my two phobias. If I could just pull myself together I would! :-)

Pee = people. Damn iPhone!!

ENormaSnob Fri 29-Mar-13 15:40:38

Yabu

I think people can share a phobia but react in different ways.

I used to be like you with big spiders but over the last 2 years I have made a conscious effort to capture the smaller ones in a glass. My physical reactions are the same but I try to control it for the sake of my ds2.

I also developed quite a severe phobia of flying following a bad flight in 07. Prior to this I actually enjoyed it. I still fly but have nightmares, irrational thoughts and palpitations for weeks running up to it. On the day I take a shit load of diazepam washed down with masses of wine. I get totally out of it on the flight otherwise I would have a full blown panic attack sad

I would happily not fly again but I don't feel that's fair to my family.

YouTheCat Fri 29-Mar-13 15:40:50

I really don't like dogs in some situations (off lead/not under control). But I wouldn't call it a phobia though those situations make me feel very scared and vulnerable.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 15:42:27

Yes, I suppose some people do zwischenzug, especially if it is an 'unusual' phobia.

Iamsparklyknickers Fri 29-Mar-13 15:47:55

I agree that a lot of people use it interchangebly with 'fear/strong dislike'.

I'm 'afraid' of jellyfish, not to the point I can't control my reaction to them or the ocean, however I think I might have a phobia of hospitals confused.

Practically speaking, I've no problems with the idea of them at all, I had an op a few years ago and was incredibly nervous of the anathestic to the point of tears - since then I get stupidly tearful and shakey whenever I'm in one - It's very odd, I know I'm being a dick and don't have any extreme feelings of fear at all and don't avoid them. Very odd!

Vicbic Fri 29-Mar-13 16:00:00

My DP thought I was just scared of spiders. At Halloween a few years ago, when I was 5 months pregnant, he put a handful of plastic spiders under the duget cover for a joke.
When I pulled the cover back to get into bed and saw them I screamed and screamed, hyperventilated and then cried for about half an hour.
He was horrified and hasn't done anything like it since!

Vicbic Fri 29-Mar-13 16:03:56

Am I very sad to be really chuffed I posted my last post at EXACTLY 4 o'clock! ?!

KateShmate Fri 29-Mar-13 16:04:34

No, OP, YANBU and it annoys me too!
I'm the same with spiders - and I know that my fear is completely ridiculous - I spend hours trying to get to sleep at night; but every tiny noise I think is a spider after an 'incident' last year.
We were in bed and there was a plastic bag by my side of the bed - I'd had a 'feeling' that there was something there, but turned the lights out and went to bed. Kept hearing this bag rustling and rustling, so turned the light back on to see this bloody huge thing go flying under the bed.
We couldn't find it and I spent 2 weeks sleeping in the spare room until DH had found it and captured it.
It completely freaked me out - was sat in hysterics for hours that night.
Even sat here now, if I hear a tiny rustle, I automatically think that it's another spider somewhere. As a grown woman, I still have to sleep with the light on because of my fear - nearly every night I spend about 2 hours lying in bed, hearing a tiny noise and then flushing boiling hot in panic.
Even sat here now, I'm constantly checking the corners of the room, behind me etc etc.
It just annoys me that people think that my 'phobia' must be the same as theirs, and because they are able to catch a spider in a glass, then I must just be being stupid. They make it into the competition by saying 'I know about phobias! I have a phobia too but I just get it in a glass, you're being ridiculous and pathetic'. I accept that people have different levels of phobias, but I just can't bare it when people try to say 'they have a phobia too and they can still capture spiders'.
Don't get me started on people who try to pretend there's one in your hair or something. Why? Does it make them happy to completely freak me out? Bastards.
So after that essay OP, no, YANBU.

Viviennemary Fri 29-Mar-13 16:06:40

A phobia is an irrational fear. I don't think it matters how great the fear is if it's still there. But I think our fear of spiders is inbuilt because of poisonous species so it's not entirely irrational in my opinion. The same with the dark and fear of jellyfish and so on.

mmmerangue Fri 29-Mar-13 16:07:20

Can I chuck in that Morgan Freeman quote:

"I hate the word homophobia. You're not scared of anything, you're just an asshole"

Obviously this is internet gold and could be false/true/misquoted by me or others.

YANBU.

HesterShaw Fri 29-Mar-13 16:12:55

Sounds to me like you could do with some hypnotherapy smile

I am scared of spiders. I was showering once and didn't notice one which was in the folds of the shower curtain. It was enormous - brown, long legged, many eyed and hairy and I first saw it about three inches from my face when I had a headful of shampoo. I had real proper hysterics.

Is that a phobia? I don't know. I can - just about - manage to cover a medium sized stationary spider with a glass and, shuddering, take it out to the garden far away from the house.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 16:13:08

Hehe, I like that!

KansasCityOctopus Fri 29-Mar-13 16:18:17

My only true phobia is over thunder, but even that has degrees.

In my house, in the daylight with my kids and Dh? I can cope, im still scared, my heart rate still goes up, i still get the flippy feeling in the tummy.. but i deal with it.

On my own or outside at night? I go into full blown panic attack mode and as a fully grown adult who left a nightclub amidst a storm ended up having to call my parents to come and fetch me.. i believe the words i used were "mommy, i'm scared" after my mom spent the first few minutes of the call trying to get me to stop crying long enough to get those 3 words out and a bit longer trying to get me to tell them where i was!!

and no, i'm not scared of the lightening, its the thunder!

I have other lesser fears - needles, climbing ladders, heights.. i will also freak if i find a spider bigger than a money spider anywhere on my person!

HesterShaw Fri 29-Mar-13 16:24:01

Kansas, I'm the other way round. Lightning is my other fear. Thunder is fine.

I would say that spiders and lightning are my only two though.

HesterShaw Fri 29-Mar-13 16:24:23

Shit that sounded smug. Didn't mean it to blush

ENormaSnob Fri 29-Mar-13 16:24:30

Kate, I am like that at night too. And once I've seen one I imagine them everywhere. I even jump out of bed screaming having dreamt theres one on me.

I wouldn't say my phobia is less than anyone else's just because I can catch a small one in a glass.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 16:24:48

Yes, Hester, I probably could do! I would love to take a pill or a class and wake up without the fear, it would be amazing smile

Kate, that is exactly what I mean! Don't get me wrong, some people are better at dealing with it than others but its the assumption that you can have a phobia and still be capable of dealing with 'the thing' and if you can't then you just need to 'man up' that gets me.

All the huffing and eye rolling they do when they realise that no matter how many times they call you pathetic you are not going to be cured of your life long phobia enough to deal with 'x' annoys me too - like one of my teachers at college who still didn't seem to understand even when I ran sobbing and screaming from her classroom!

I had a kid at sunday school stick one right in my face once - I hit him with my bible grin

HesterShaw Fri 29-Mar-13 16:27:13

What would Jesus have said?

grin

He probably would have thought you were entirely justified actually....

KansasCityOctopus Fri 29-Mar-13 16:33:01

tbh, i hate spiders, and i used to scream and run from them, but i'm trying SO hard not to pass my phobias onto the kids because i heard once that a lot of them are LEARNED.

So i woman up and do the old glass/postcard trick and quietly wee my pants a little when they wiggle in the glass while i do it.

Dh can pick them up with his hands and it just makes me want to squeal and SHOWER NOW when i see him do it <heebeegeebies>

I also console myself by watching the Phil Jupitus sketch about his arachnophobia on youtube regularly!

FreudiansSlipper Fri 29-Mar-13 16:33:03

Not eveyone would ring others or get on Facebook asking for help that does not mean their fear is any less

I have been physically sick after seeing a rat but I would not be calling others at 11pm for help I am just not that sort of person

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 16:54:02

The thing is Freud, under normal circumstances I would not do that, I would think it very rude but at the time it was the only option my panic stricken mind could come up with!

Theicingontop Fri 29-Mar-13 16:56:14

I don't tend to tell people about my actual, life-limiting phobia, because it's quite embarrassing and sometimes I feel like it's ruining my life.

So I don't understand people who talk about it at all really, especially in a jokey, offhand way. Makes me quite envy

Arabesque Fri 29-Mar-13 16:59:22

I take your point. I'm not mad about spiders and get a bit shivery and ugh if I have to trap one and get rid of it. But it's not a phobia.
On the other hand if I see a mouse I literally have to get out of the place. I go completely beserk. There's no comparision between the way I feel about mice and the way I feel about spiders. However I'm sure people who don't particularly like mice assume I feel the same as them, a bit ugh but nothing serious, and can't understand why I'm making such a stupid childish scene.
If you don't actually have a phobia you really can't understand how terrified it makes you feel.

goodfreyedaysusan Fri 29-Mar-13 17:01:20

I knew someone who can't look at pictures of spiders.

I find the thought of being near dogs almost as bad. I sort of know in my head that I am not going to die until they come within 3 feet of me and then I panic....

Theicingontop Fri 29-Mar-13 17:01:51

Oh, and because it's a bit of a weird one people assume I'm being 'kooky' or 'random', and email me pictures of something that will literally have me clawing at my skin, close to tears. hmm

Dededum Fri 29-Mar-13 17:03:02

My DS1 does have an irrational dislike of buttons, badges and writing on clothes. He tolerates the things he has to like buttons on school shirts and badge on blazer. But his fear is real not an invented phobia.

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 17:06:37

The following words have become too 'trendy' and so people cant take seriously the people who REALLY suffer from these:

Stress.
Depression.
Starving.
Phobia.

im sure there are more overused words around.

Arabesque Fri 29-Mar-13 17:11:47

Allergy is another word that's often used inappropriately. As a result people who suffer from genuine food allergies are sometimes considered to be just a 'nuisance' or 'attention seeking'.

BeeBawBabbity Fri 29-Mar-13 17:19:06

YANBU. My hospital/medical phobia usually results in a faint. I feel really embarrassed and I'm certainly not attention seeking. It annoys me too when people use the term to describe something they just dislike.

RubixCube Fri 29-Mar-13 17:19:12

I've had people minimizing my needle phobia.I don't know what i would do if i ever had emergency c section as there is no way atall i could have they gigantic needle put in my back.I stopped going to the dentist for years because of a bad experience with a needle and the dentist calling me a baby because i was crying with fear

FreudiansSlipper Fri 29-Mar-13 17:19:29

I was not being critical of you doing that I get why

Many words are over used but there is more understanding which is a good thing

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 17:19:41

YY allergy too.

RubixCube Fri 29-Mar-13 17:20:02

they=that blush

Sparklingbrook Fri 29-Mar-13 17:21:50

I am sure a lot of people may have 'needle phobia' but really does anybody actually like having a needle inserted? Of course they don't. It's horrible.

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 17:22:11

Disability too.

specialsubject Fri 29-Mar-13 17:24:05

The near miss on the road an hour ago quite frightened me - little boy without the understanding of driving on the left. Otherwise I don't have any fears which I would expect to be the case for most adults; UNLESS they have a phobia.

question; can phobias be treated? Must be quite a problem if you have an attack of these proportions over something as common as a spider.

(genuine question - I also can't bear girly fussing but recognise that for some people, it isn't that)

RubixCube Fri 29-Mar-13 17:25:25

A phobia is different to not likeing though.Phobias limit people.Like i said i stopped using the dentist for years.When i finally went to a dentist my teeth were bad blush If i had been going to the dentist every 6months they could have been saved

DomesticCEO Fri 29-Mar-13 17:26:58

Sparkling, no I'm sure most people don't like needles but most people tolerate them ok. I have a needle phobia and its horrific - I had to endure 3 IVF cycles with it, and I still work myself into a state of total panic at the thought of having an injection blush.

KansasCityOctopus Fri 29-Mar-13 17:37:11

i dislike needles, to the point i refused an epidural or any injections during labour.

however, i can tolerate blood tests and was quite happy to deal with having injections and canula inserted when i was in hospital with kidney stones!

I have a dentist phobia, i have to take anxiety meds like diazapam before having any work done and have passed out in the dentists chair before... those focus around having injections in my mouth and the sound/feel of the drills and are more sensory (im hfa) than anything else though!

Sparklingbrook Fri 29-Mar-13 17:44:55

sad Domestic. My friend says she has a needle phobia, but she doesn't IMO. She went to give blood. confused

I get sweaty palms at the thought of an injection/blood test/going to the dentist, because I don't like it.

LynetteScavo Fri 29-Mar-13 17:56:37

There are different levels of phobia's. People on TV shows who claim they have a phobia of spiders, but then put their hand in a box of spiders to pull out £50 notes annoy me. That's not a phobia.

I have a phobia. I don't tell people in RL, unless I really have to (and trust them). My phobia is so bad, that if that thing was in my kitchen, I would no longer be in my house. It over rides my need to protect my DC, which really worries me. I have thought about being hypnotised, but even the thought of confronting my fear scares me.

I do wonder if I don't ^wan't to be cured.

I'm nearly crying thinking about it now. sad

So, there is no way I would be able to sit in the house, and post of FB for people to help me. I would have had to knock on a strangers door, or demanded all the DC get out of bed, find my credit card for me and driven to a hotel. I may well not go back in to the house, ever.

KatyTheCleaningLady Fri 29-Mar-13 18:00:47

I think of a phobia as a paralysing fear that can't be overcome by taking a deep breath.

I am merely very afraid of spiders and want to avoid them. It's more revulsion than fear.

My feelings about water are deeper. If you were to throw me into the sea, I could tread water and cope. It's just a deeply upsetting thing to think about. I don't think I could be persuaded to try snorkeling or scuba diving. I think maybe it's a phobia, but nothing like agoraphobia or something debilitating like that.

Mumsyblouse Fri 29-Mar-13 18:19:57

Sparklingbrook this is exactly the point that the Op is making, no-one likes needles or spiders, but many people who claim to be phobic are not. I tell people that I am 'needle' phobic (I have a wider medical phobia, but can't be bothered to go into it) and they say 'oh yes, I have that, I just don't look or I take a deep breath' or 'you just have to get on with it don't you?' to which the answer is no, you don't just get on with it if you have a phobia, you sweat you cry, you avoid situations where you have to face it even if it is detrimental to your health.

MyShoofly Fri 29-Mar-13 18:48:06

I have an extreme fear of sharks. People shrug that off when I say it because everyone is afraid of sharks...but I am obsessed.

I read shark attack statistics, I have frequent nightmares about them and it negatively impacts any vacation I have where my loved ones or I will be going to the beach. Watching my kids swim in the ocean = near hysterical anxiety and large doses of aversion. Feel like its getting worse too. it's a shame I otherwise love the ocean, water in general, and am a great swimmer.

I dont know if this counts as a "phobia" but I wish there was a pill for it too.

bishboschone Fri 29-Mar-13 19:02:50

I hate it when my friend days she is afraid of flying .. She has never flown !!! Err you are afraid of the unknown not flying !

Sparklingbrook Fri 29-Mar-13 19:05:09

I am not afraid of flying. I am afraid of the plane plummeting to the ground and smashing to smithereens. wink

bishboschone Fri 29-Mar-13 19:09:30

Ha !

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 19:13:29

I think that is where phobias really start differing to fears is that a phobia can have a profound effect on your life - I feel very lucky that my phobia does not effect my health in the way a needle phobia could.

I have questioned whether by phobia would effect me in a life threatening situation, like a stupid hypothetical 'if saving DC's lives meant touching a spider would you do it' honestly I'm not sure if I could and that makes me feel awful sad

Yes Mumsy that is what I mean smile All those people who claim to have a needle phobia and don't make it worse for the ones who don't!

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 19:13:59

Oops, I mean do, stupid phone :p

Sparklingbrook Fri 29-Mar-13 19:15:52

But if you had to touch that spider you would extreme if it was to save your DC's lives adrenaline would kick in and you would do it.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 19:16:50

Hopefully I won't ever have to find out smile

ZolaBuddleia Fri 29-Mar-13 19:24:19

I really want to know what some of these phobias are now. grin

Purple2012 Fri 29-Mar-13 19:26:52

The dictionary says a phobia is an extreme fear or dislike of a Particular thing or situation

If you say I have a phobia where someone else is just scared makes it sound competitive.

I am afraid of heights. I don't like pictures of high things, even someone talking about somewhere high up makes me feel sick. Could I go up something high if I had to? Possibly. But I avoid them just as I avoid looking at pictures of them. Do I have a phobia? Probably, but I can live my life without having to go up heights so it doesnt really affect me massively.

Mumsyblouse Fri 29-Mar-13 19:28:51

In my case the answer was no I couldn't take my children to be vaccinated and I have never taken them to either vaccinations or the dentist. Even though I know this is wrong (I get my husband to do it). I have been with them for an operation though, so if push comes to shove, I can be in the same room although it has the effect of panicking them not being reassuring. So I could watch them being injected if it was to save their life but I would probably leave them with my own phobia (which is what I think happened to me as it was passed down the family).

KateShmate Fri 29-Mar-13 19:28:59

I think about that kind of thing all the time extreme - stupid thoughts are constantly running through my head when I'm in a panicky mood. Like if someone were to give me an ultimatum 'Eat the spider or I'll hurt your children' I wonder whether I would genuinely be able to eat it.
Like you say, hopefully we'll never be in that situation, and hopefully no one will ever give me an ultimatum like that! But this is the sort of thing that a phobia does to you.
Lynette I always think the same as that too. I've thought about having treatment - but the thought of being 'happy' with a spider completely freaks me out - I don't want that. It scares me that in the end, to 'test' me, I'll be shown a spider. I can't bloody take that!

Isn't is strange what we fear though - give me needles, rats and snakes any day and they really wouldn't bother me. But obviously spiders to other people aren't that scary either.

sudaname Fri 29-Mar-13 19:29:59

I have a phobia of cows. Shake,sweat,legs turn to jelly if there is even the slightest chance one or more might be able to get on the same path or field as me. I once refused to walk over a field (public footpath) where you could see for miles there was no cattle on it except for one little corner obscured by trees that we would have had to pass. My DH had to walk the whole length of the field to check out this corner and then signal to me it was cattle free before l would leave the safety of the road.
My DF and many others cant understand it and rib me mercilessly,yet she is an arachnophobic(sp) whilst l have no problems whatsoever with picking up the things and putting them outside etc.
Now correct me if l'm wrong but in the uk at least l have never heard of anyone being killed by a spider but every year there is at least one story of a walker being injured , even killed by cows surrounding them.
Yet apparently l'm the one with the irrational fear.hmm

bishboschone Fri 29-Mar-13 19:30:09

Needle phobia annoys me too. I mean who likes being stabbed with a needle ?? It's horrid but you just get on with it. It's no worse for them than it is for everyone else. I'm another one who doesn't like sharks but I don't go on about it . I avoid the sea and if I am taken by surprise by a picture it makes my heart miss a beat but I wouldn't say I have a phobia , more like I shouldn't have watched jaws when I was 12 !!

Mumsyblouse Fri 29-Mar-13 19:30:11

In other words, being calm for the children doesn't work for me at least, the panic takes over (which isn't very good for them).

Mumsyblouse Fri 29-Mar-13 19:32:33

bishboschone you are just illustrating the exaggeration to which the OP was alluding. You do not have a phobia of needles or sharks and it hasn't affected your life, lucky you but no, really phobic people can't just 'get on with it'. Do you think people with depression should just 'snap out of it' too?

bishboschone Fri 29-Mar-13 19:34:15

No I don't as my mum and sister have suffer from depression but I do think a lot of people make a big fuss about stuff when really their fear is no worse than a normal persons .

aldiwhore Fri 29-Mar-13 19:34:47

If a phobia is indeed an IRRATIONAL 'fear' and if all fear is relative, then YABU.

It's not a competition.

There are levels though, of fear and affect so YANBU to be a little annoyed at people who simply 'jump and shudder' if you have a proper panic attack and are incapable of rational thought.

On the fence here.

aldiwhore Fri 29-Mar-13 19:36:53

I would say if any 'irrational fear' affects your day to day life then you have an extreme, life affecting phobia.

Someone who loathes spiders but it doesn't affect their life STILL has a phobia, just not an extreme, life affecting one.

Emilythornesbff Fri 29-Mar-13 19:37:27

Yanbu.

Bimbledorf Fri 29-Mar-13 19:40:19

Until I developed a phobia I definitely never had one before. Although I know I flippantly said I was phobic of spiders, snakes etc, I now know for a fact i was simply scared of them / disliked them.

My phobia overrules my brain and any rational thought and whilst I can talk about it and even laugh at how ridiculous it is - it truly overpowers me to the point of panic and absolute avoidance! There is nothing more irritating than someone belittling that type of fear just because they aren't scared of it themselves! Like Mumsyblouse says "lucky you"!

Mumsyblouse Fri 29-Mar-13 19:40:34

So, depression is a proper mental health problem, but a life-altering phobia is not. You better let the NHS know, they provide treatment for it!

sudaname Fri 29-Mar-13 19:41:39

Myshootfly me too. l think that although it is so statistically unlikely to get eaten by a shark it is just so horrific that even the slightest miniscule chance of it is just too much.
A poor man got eaten off the North Island of NZ a few weeks ago and we had just arrived there the day before. l think it was the first shark attack in living memory there or for a very very long time,tens of decades or whatever, but they weren't sure they actually shot the shark or sharks that did it as they found no bodies (they managed to retrieve the poor mans body) - guess what - people were still swimming along that stretch of coast the next day - l was like this > shock.

sudaname Fri 29-Mar-13 19:57:43

Myshootfly me too. l think that although it is so statistically unlikely to get eaten by a shark it is just so horrific that even the slightest miniscule chance of it is just too much.
A poor man got eaten off the North Island of NZ a few weeks ago and we had just arrived there the day before. l think it was the first shark attack in living memory there or for a very very long time,tens of decades or whatever, but they weren't sure they actually shot the shark or sharks that did it as they found no bodies (they managed to retrieve the poor mans body) - guess what - people were still swimming along that stretch of coast the next day although the actual surrounding beach was closed for three days - l was like this > shock.

sudaname Fri 29-Mar-13 19:58:55

I'm afraid of echoes grin and there appears to be one in here.

austenozzy Fri 29-Mar-13 20:03:38

A true phobia is an irrational fear that affects your ability to lead a normal day to day life. Someone with a fear of cats who can't leave the house in case the neighbour's cat is sitting on the wall has a 'proper' phobia. If someone can't go near a spider but can still live in a big house in the country with lots of spiders in it, (like my stepMIL) then they don't have a phobia, they are simply afraid of spiders.

I agree with what others have said though - that doesn't diminish the fact that people are afraid of all sorts of stuff to differing degrees, so I think the OP is being a little unreasonable to get irritated by them.

aldiwhore Fri 29-Mar-13 20:03:45

I am phobic of moths, I am also phobic of caves.

Put a moth in my room and I don't like it, I run about, I have a tantrum, if alone I shoo moth out, my skin crawls. It's irrational, it is fear, I am phobic. But it doesn't affect my day to day life.

Put me anywhere near a cave, mention a cave, suggest we go to a cave and I will probably stab you. I have nightmares about caves. I WORRY about caves. I have major anxiety (now) about the thought or suggestion or hint of a cave. I feel sick. If a cave is on TV I WILL be sick. I am phobic. It does affect my day to day life, randomly, but is on the mild end of extreme.

Both statement are true.

It is not a competition, but a sliding scale. Off to another thread before I'm sick.

I have massive sympathy for people who suffer majorly extreme phobias, seeing as one of mine is pretty mild and the other seems just daft. But they are both phobias.

Sparklingbrook Fri 29-Mar-13 20:06:38

I could not go pot holing. Ever. But I manage to avoid it.

I hate moths-in the house I have to shut the door on them. Outside, moths are fine. It's the flapping round my head I don't like.

Misty9 Fri 29-Mar-13 20:11:30

I have a phobia of spiders (ooh, even typing the word gives me goose bumps!) but since having ds, as others have said, I've made a huge effort to address my fear a little, lest it be passed onto him. I know exactly what treatment I'd require to overcome my fear (it's my job to do it with others!) but NO WAY am I putting myself through that shock

Dh bought me a spider catcher for Xmas (!) and thinks I should just be able to 'get over' it if I try hard enough hmm good job he doesn't do what I do for a living... grin

That said, my mum has a phobia of balloons (I know) and it is a full blown panic attack phobia, but no more a phobia than mine so OP I think you AB a bit U

armagh Fri 29-Mar-13 20:23:29

I'm with Lynette.... I would leave my dc if there were rodents. I'd be gone out of the house like the wind. I've no problem with a spider thoughsmile

Creameggkr Fri 29-Mar-13 20:28:53

I'm terrified of heights. I have a physical reaction to them and cannot overcome it. It's horrible when I can't go on stuff with the dc like rides or certain bridges etc. I've tried many times to do things and imagine I can overcome it but It doesn't work.
I've had to get off things mid go and the dc are mortified.
So I do pull a face when people say they have a phobia of heights and then abseil down a building g for charity.
I would literally die of a heart attack if I did that.

hwjm1945 Fri 29-Mar-13 20:30:24

I have got a bit of a thing about spaghetti,can't eat it and struggle to be at table when others are eating
my it.we never ever have spat bol .it looks like worms, but I can man it if I have to e.g restaurant Tec.not a phobia.

ZolaBuddleia Fri 29-Mar-13 20:34:41

So, if a proper phobia is something where you have absolutely no control and it is a serious affliction, I can understand how people can be terrified of non lethal or life threatening things. I don't understand how someone can be just frightened of spiders in the UK, where they can't kill you, or even do you much damage.

Zola If a phobia had any rational basis, it wouldn't be a phobia.

I know someone who has absolute terror at walking under a ladder. She knows it's irrational, but she just can't control her reaction. I reckon most phobias are set in childhood, eg something happens to a small child that really terrifies them because they haven't yet developed enough to be able to process their fear in a way that minimises what happened as an adult would.

Atually, thinking about it, the "phobia" that pisses me off the most is the one about needles.

There are people about who really do have that phobia, but so many people use it as an excuse when asked if they'd donate blood, for example, that it trivialises it. Then those who DO have this for real are often not believed because so many use it as an excuse not to do certain things.

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 21:32:35

I have many many many.... one of the weirdest is a phone phobia.

i absolutely freak out at the phone. have to have one ( a mobile) for emergencies but only EVER use texts.

even got soemone else to do my answermessage, yet people still dont leave text messages.

the rare times ive HAd to phone people (official or emergency stuff) i have to have a stiff drink first, count 1-mississippi-2-mississippi- etc, and steel myself. then my voice comes over so twittery and shaky no one can understand what im saying anyway!

i jsut think if its important theyll leave a message and an email/text number.

i have afriend whos got a phobia of heights and didnt tell me when we went out and i parked in a multi-storey carpark. poor thing.

Whether they are truly phobias or not, I have serious issues with both heights and small, enclosed spaces. I had to have an MRI and took diazepam for it and still had to work really, really hard to keep from panicking throughout. Even the thought of something like potholeing/caving makes me feel ill. I dislike lifts for this reason, but the crappiness of my health has meant that I have had to get used to them because the stairs really are not an alternative in so many situations.

I have a horrible physical reaction to heights too. I get vertigo and shakey and tearful. H doesn't understand that I really, really struggle to climb up our stepladder. I cannot use the top two rungs on it at all. He got very annoyed at me while we were doing some decorating about this. I couldn't even hold the ladder (or watch) when he was using it at the top of the stairs. I can cross most bridges, but I often feel panicky and have to distract myself. And I worry irrationally about the children on them (but I hide this from them and H because it's not something I want to pass on).

I dislike spiders (completely irrationally) but it's nowhere near as bad or problematic. I did have to go to the ther side of the room when they brought out the tarantulas in an animal handling session and H was annoyed that I wouldn't come closer and even hold it. I actually couldn't have.

Wow, I am completely useless. Aren't I? grin

TigerseyeMum Fri 29-Mar-13 21:45:11

With regards to women having phobias possibly as a mechanism for rescue (by men), it's more likely that women experience a stronger sense of 'disgust' than men which develops in girls in adolescence but less strongly in boys. Disgust plays a role in many animal phobias such as spiders.

It is not fully understood why it develops but is suspected to be biological.

Therefore it's not necessarily social conditioning leading women to run screaming from spiders waiting to be rescued by big strong men, although there is a degree of social learning that goes on.

A phobia is defined as such if the fear affects your daily life for a period of at least 6 months and is treatable on the NHS. They broadly fit established themes (mainly animals, nature, blood/injury/injection and dental) but button phobia is also relatively common. About 6% of the population fit the criteria for

Changebagsandgladrags Fri 29-Mar-13 21:46:15

OK I don't like dogs, am terrified of them. I cannot pass a dog that's unattended, at all. I won't go to the park on my own because of dogs.

If I do have to have a dog encounter, say, pass a dog on the pavement not on a lead then my heart races, mouth goes dry, sweaty palms. Then after it's all over I have to have a sit down.

Am I allowed to call it a phobia?

TigerseyeMum Fri 29-Mar-13 21:46:37

(sorry) ...phobia at any one time and phobias don't go away on their own.

CBT is effective for phobia so if you are struggling with one ask your gp for a referral.

Here endeth the phobia lesson smile

I have issues with phones too. I hate phoning people. I have to psych myself up to phone anyone (except H, usually, but that's on as I have to do it so often). This includes phoning utility companies and such like. And I don't answer the phone to unfamiliar numbers if I can help it. Weirdly, I'm not particularly introverted; I just don't like phoning people. No idea why.

I can phone people though. And I wouldn't say I was 'scared' of it. I just have issues with it. I think it's that I really worry about imposing myself on people. (And that will be related to my really crappy childhood and toxic family).

NewBlueShoes Fri 29-Mar-13 21:52:28

I think I am just short of a snake phobia. Walking across a grassy field in summer is terrifying but I kind of make myself do it, I regularly have snake nightmares and any close encounters leave me petrified.

I would never go to a doctor or seek a 'cure' for it because I know they would make me hold a snake which is totally out of the question. Also I know everything there is to know about adders so that I think I can avoid where they will be or what to do.

I am desperately trying not to pass this fear onto my children because I know it came from my mother.

Is this a phobia?

Sparklingbrook Fri 29-Mar-13 21:54:15

I don't know New. Sparkling Cat brings back grass snakes in the summer. I can cope with them on the lawn, at a distance but don't think I could touch them.

The phone thing is a form of social anxiety and it is quite common. CBT is very effective at treating it

MrsDeVere Fri 29-Mar-13 22:02:28

YANBU it annoys me too.

I don't think I have a phobia. I know I have an anxiety disorder. I think they are different but perhaps they aren't?

I have very serious issues with hospitals, medical environments, clinics of any kind really. I think I could have called it a phobia for a short time because I couldn't go near them.
But I had to sort it out because it is very hard to get through life avoiding all of the above.
So now I go to these places but my heart races, my breathing changes, i am hyper vigilant and on the verge of hysterics the whole time. It can take days to get over it.

If it was a phobia I wouldn't be able to go at all would I? <genuine question>

It is getting better with therapy and with time.

I do have an odd reaction to heights too. I don't worry about heights and I can look at photos of high buildings etc without any issues. But a couple of times I have become literally paralyzed with fear when I have been in a high place (York Tower you utter bastard). Incredibly embarrassing because I sort of lost all control over my emotions and actions.

I would hate to feel like that when faced with an everyday situation like dogs or pigeons or something.

That must be bloody awful

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 22:05:48

tak you've found me out! thats the thing i actually didnt want to say, of my many many phobias. but hey, you said it.

yes, social phobia. big time. ive kind of shared this before, i ONLY go out and interact with others for DCs sake. otherwise, i was ok before I became a mum, but time and age and stuff, im getting worse each day.

Are you getting any treatment marj?

Ilovefluffysheep Fri 29-Mar-13 22:15:51

Snakes for me. Totally irrational and uncontrollable reaction. Can't look at pictures of them, watch them on tv, and even realistic toys make me burst ino tears. Saw one last year in the road and freaked out completely, ran screaming in the other direction. Can't control my reaction at all. If I had to rescue my kids from a snake I honestly don't think I could, and that scares me.

ghoulelocks Fri 29-Mar-13 22:16:33

stickers upset me, the idea of them has me itchy but I can get a little hysterical if their nasty stickiness is close to touching me. It feels like they will never come off and I panic a bit.






I'm a primary teacher! My class probably wonder why they are directed to collect their own reward stickers from the drawer...

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Fri 29-Mar-13 22:16:40

I think a lot of people don't understand what a phobia actually is and they use it when they mean that they really really REALLY don't like something!

When in actual fact, a phobia triggers your fight or flight response and is bloody terrifying.

I had a needle phobia. It caused me to discharge myself against medical advice rather than have needles, and refuse a life changing operation. I would rather have died and yes, I mean actually died, than had a needle.

It took many many sessions of cbt to learn how to tolerate needles.

Really really hating something and being afraid of it is awful. But it's not the same as a phobia. Where you think you're going to die.

And yes, the world and his wife appears to have a needle 'phobia' and then have a bit of a whinge and stick their arm out.

I nearly died because my terror of needles was so strong.

But it doesn't annoy me any more when people say they've got a phobia when they haven't. I'm glad they haven't. I'm glad that they don't know what it actually feels like, because I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 22:24:27

treatment? nah. just something i try and give myself a boot up the bumbum and make an effort to take Dc out.

THEN try and put ona brave face when we ARE out, just try and avoid eye contact and stuff. difficult when we have to get public transport, but if we can we use the car.

Just trying to make sure Dc doesnt miss out on a social life. my friends are okay about it, sometimes (they have kids DC plays with) i jsut can hardly make convo and they are understanding.

Ok. If it gets worse you can always get help though...please dont suffer in silence.
I have agoraphobia and claustrophobia. At one point I hadn't left my house for seven weeks. I was signed off work for 3 months.

I have come a good way since October with intensive CBT. Today I started anti-anxiety medication to give me an extra boost. I believe I can conquer this and I refuse to keep living a half-life at the mercy of my phobias.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 22:38:15

Imtoo, I really feel like I would rather die than have one touch me, I used to have a recurring nightmare where I was trapped in a car with one and I kept leaping out into the road to get away!

The thought of my kids touching one also completely freaks me out, I can't bear it because (even though I know they aren't really) to me they are so dangerous there is no way I can risk my precious babies coming into contact with one!

I can still quite calmly and discuss how irrational and silly it is to be so afraid of something that is so unharmful (in this country anyway smile ) but as soon as I actually see one a trip switch goes in my brain and I become unable to think logically past the blind panic.

I really want to get over it but, like some others have said, I can't bring myself to expose myself to them on purpose!

I do think an element of it is learned though, as my mom and sister are both as bad as me and my brother doesn't like them very much. DH was fine with them before meeting me, I think I rub off on people!

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 22:40:23

well done tak for taking a bold step! thanks

but i think im like the poster that said she wont go to the gp about her fear of snakes as shes sure the doc will just thrust a snake in her hand.

theres no way i actually want to be pushed into a roomfull of people or something.

we go to church and we 'sneak' in a bit late,and i sit right at the back, maybe nod to people (hate it when the priest says to share the peace and evryone starts shaking hands, i have to 'go to the ladies room' when they do that) DC goes to sunday school and i slip out before the end, and wait in the car for DC to come out.

Bunnyjo Fri 29-Mar-13 22:41:51

I have a phobia of wasps. I remember going to Alton Towers with the school and I ended up having an asthma attack (brought on by sheer panic and anxiety) because of the wasps surrounding the bins.

I also remember phoning my dad when I moved into my first home and a wasp came into the kitchen. I was literally sobbing and he thought I had been burgled/attacked. Bless him, he did the 1hr round trip to get the bastard wasp out of the kitchen.

When DD was 18mth, I was shopping in Newcastle. A wasp started flying round the pushchair she was in. I fled and ran into the nearest shop, screaming and sobbing. To my shame, I actually left DD with the wasp circling her and the pushchair sad.

Finally, at the grand old age of 33, I killed a wasp. I used an entire can of Raid and gave myself an asthma attack in the process! Phobias can seem funny to other people and I know that my phobia can seem tame to others, but I find my phobia disabling...

You start off very very small and build up. There is a skill to CBT,no decent practitioner would ever ever make you do the phobic things right away. You work your way up via a system of least scary to most scary over time and you have calm rational thought to replace the irrational phobia-based ones while you're doing it.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Fri 29-Mar-13 22:44:30

Me too. I could always analyse my behaviour. Didn't make a blind bit of difference. The logical reasonable part of me could acknowledge that having an injection or some blood taken would not in reality kill be while at the same time the second the thought of actually having a needle crossed my mind, I'd be shaking and crying.

What used to piss me right off was people attempting to reassure me by saying it really wasn't very painful. hmm demonstrating that they just didn't bloody get it! As if it was about the tiny little scratch you feel!

I never thought I would get over it. I haven't got over it, more that I have been taught coping strategies via LOADS of cbt!

I really would recommend it. They don't get you in the room and confront you with your fear. It is a very gradual process that you are totally in control of.

TigerseyeMum Fri 29-Mar-13 22:46:10

In answer to the question, no a phobia is not only if you avoid something completely. If you can be in the presence of something and it causes you marked distress then it is still a phobia.

marjproops Fri 29-Mar-13 22:47:38

horrible isnt it, all these genuine phobias. and yy what seems tame to others....

I actually LOVE reptiles, i love snakes. but ive seen others (like on here) go absolutely spare with them.

Yep. I can hold a mouse. I could put a spider out the window. I think snakes are cool and I can yap on the phone for hours.

But put me in a queue in the post office, or on a train at rush hour, or in a meeting room with lots of people I don't know....and I'm a quivering, shaking, sweating mess.

extremepie Fri 29-Mar-13 22:58:30

Fortunately I don't have phobias of anything else (thank god!) - really like snakes too!

Bunnyjo that is pretty life limiting in summer, that must be really difficult for you, I can't imagine how I would feel if spiders could fly, were out in abundance during my favourite season and were attracted to my picnic/barbecue food sad

I can't leave windows open for the breeze in the summer though, which is a bit annoying but I'd rather be hot than risk the 8 legged bastards getting in the house!

sweetkitty Fri 29-Mar-13 23:08:56

I cannot even type out the name of my phobia because that means I will think of them, not spiders quite like spiders.

I cannot go outside my house after dark in the summer in case they are about or early in the morning. I cannot touch things in the garden in case one of them are on there, I would love to garden but I can't dig soil in case they are there. Cannot look at a photo.

Even the pellets to get rid of them has a photo of them on there, why??? I get DP to peel the photo off!

Bunnyjo Fri 29-Mar-13 23:17:41

Thank you extremepie. I live in a lovely old farm house that seems to be permantly riddled with spiders as big as cellar spiders. I am pretty thankful that I don't have a phobia of them.

Weirdly, I've never been stung by a wasp and I have no recollection of how my phobia began (much to the disgust and confusion of most behavioural psychologists).

I don't leave windows open in summer, because of wasps. Luckily, we live on the top of a little valley that gets lots of wind, so wasps don't tend to settle round here. But, I'd rather not take the risk...

Iheartcows Fri 29-Mar-13 23:27:21

I have many strong fears. Not sure if I'd class any as phobias but I'm terrible with
Frogs
Heights
Large spiders
Needles
Dentists
Cows (despite my name. It's cow print I love)
Pylons
Anything medical
Bananas
Stomach bugs (petrified of being sick or getting diarrhoea)

I suppose the worse for me is the medical one. I think I'd probably class it as a true phobia as I'll do anything to avoid going to the doctor or having any kind of medical procedure.
I had to go to the docs the other day and I was a wreck. I only needed a lump looking at but I'd convinced myself they were going to take blood or send me to the hospital and put me on a drip.
I was sat in the waiting room close to tears with my heart pounding and palms sweating. Of course I then panic so much I'm scared I'll be sick so that's another thing to worry about. confused

sashh Sat 30-Mar-13 03:42:02

I have a friend with a needle phobia (as in syringe not sewing) I've gone with her for blood samples, we tell the staff and they think she is just a bit nervous.

Nope she has one of the following reactions

Total panic attack, hyperventilatilating, crying, shaking the works.

Faints and they have to monitor her for 10 mins because her BP is so low.

So OP I agree with you, people should not say they have a phobia unless they do.

sashh Sat 30-Mar-13 03:59:45

I have a friend with a needle phobia (as in syringe not sewing) I've gone with her for blood samples, we tell the staff and they think she is just a bit nervous.

Nope she has one of the following reactions

Total panic attack, hyperventilatilating, crying, shaking the works.

Faints and they have to monitor her for 10 mins because her BP is so low.

So OP I agree with you, people should not say they have a phoi

chrome100 Sat 30-Mar-13 06:14:51

I have a very strange reaction to rows of holes, so things like honey combs, sponges, pumice stones, porous things. They really make me gag. I have had it my whole life and have no idea why. I am not sure if it's a phobia as I can be in the same room as these things, but I just can't look at them without nearly being sick.

I have never met anyone who has anything similar but would love to as I feel like a right weirdo.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 30-Mar-13 07:14:28

Chrome, how do you feel about lotus pods?

Some people think it's fun to photoshop them onto people so it looks like they have holes in their skin. [sad[confused

VivaLeBeaver Sat 30-Mar-13 07:31:26

Chrome100, the phobia of rows of holes is a known phobia....has a proper name. I read about it once, can't remember the name now.

I have Cliethrophobia, fear of been trapped. It's different from claustrophobia as I'm fine in small spaces. But I can have a melt down in the bread aisle in tesco if its busy as I can't see the door. In fact been in crowds makes it worse as I start to panic that I can't get out. Dh seems to think I have a phobia of flying as I have panic attacks in airports. But it's not flying, it's the airport.....especially round the queues for security as I'm not near any windows, doors, etc.

Theicingontop Sat 30-Mar-13 08:20:17

Chrome, I have trypophobia. A fear of clusters or rows of holes. Mainly organically made, but some man-made holes set me off as well.

Lotus pods, sponges, seashells, you name it. Anything in skin is a major trigger. Also, clusters of tiny things too, like ant eggs or butterfly eggs on a leaf.

You're not alone! I thought I was for years, but there's a huge community of us online. I've never met someone with the same phobia in real life though.

Spottyblancmange Sat 30-Mar-13 08:27:02

Bunnyjo- me too. I've done similar with DD also, one landed on her head and I ran in terror. Luckily DP was still there but I know I'd have run either way. If there's something buzzing that I can't see it has a similar effect because it could be a wasp, I've had a full blown panic attack before now.

I do know where it comes from though, I was stung as a child and I react more severely than some. So my mother became convinced if I was stung again I'd have an anaphylactic reaction (which as an adult I know is a minute chance but as a kid I accepted as truth) and terrified me with "If it stings you, you'll die".

DomesticCEO Sat 30-Mar-13 08:27:46

Sparkling, sorry only just come back to the thread. No this was much more than sweaty palms - I had to have emla cream (I imagine this was purely psychological!), wouldn't sleep the night before, would need to lie down because would often faint before they even got the needle out of the packet, would need a specific nurse to do the injection, etc, etc.

Then of course I had all the needles that pg entails and at one point up to be pinned down to have a blood test because I had Pre eclampsia and they needed to test me but I was refusing to have the blood test.

It's a nightmare sad

Sparklingbrook Sat 30-Mar-13 08:29:20

Oh Domestic that just sounds so awful. Pinned down? sad

armagh Sat 30-Mar-13 08:32:45

Arbitrary I know how you feel i got stuck up on our garage flat roof and had to call a neighbour to talk me down smile couldn't do it on my own. it's funny now but was really scary at the time. Yet I've been to the top of the Empire state building, Sears tower and the john Hancock building in Chicago. Snakes, rodents and monkeys frighten me and i had to face monkeys roaming in Africa. Again needed somebody with me. Dogs off leads too- scary- though i love dogs.
Gosh i'm a scaredy cat!!!

MrsDeVere Sat 30-Mar-13 10:05:03

I haven't got that cluster/hole phobia but I am glad I am not the only one who finds them disturbing!

I feel the same way about flaky things. Someone posted a pic of a foot with the skin sloughing off on FB the other day and I couldn't stop thinking about it.

Weirdly I do not feel disgusted by skin conditions like eczema or harlequin syndrome at all. My son had very severe eczema and I have worked with children with severe skin conditions and it doesn't bother me at all.

I get very pissed of with people who say they have a needle phobia who haven't. Its often used as a reason not to give blood.

If you have a real phobia that is totally different. If you don't fancy the idea of a needle you are being a wuss <harsh>.

I know of some very brave people who overcame their fear (as opposed to phobia) to give blood. I admire them a lot.

extremepie Sat 30-Mar-13 10:12:49

I really admire anyone who has the guts to overcome a fear of anything, it must take an awful lot of hard work and is something I have, so far, been unable to do smile

thegreylady Sat 30-Mar-13 12:21:03

My dh is 6'2" and is so scared of spiders that once he has spotted one he cannot stay in the house until it has gone.
I am terrified of dead birds and if I know there is one in the street I cannot walk past it but have to take a detour.I sweat and shake if I see one and once disgraced myself by screaming 'a bird! a bird!' while on a walk with dd's inlaws.

DomesticCEO Sat 30-Mar-13 17:44:42

I was crying hysterically and being a big old wuss by this point Sparkling - 5 different nurses had tried and failed to get a needle in me. They ended up calling an anaesthetist, who grabbed my arm, pinned it to bed and stuck a needle in - it was brutal but it worked sad.

BruthasTortoise Sat 30-Mar-13 18:57:23

Clowns. Can't go into town when the circus is in town because of the posters. Can't look at photos. Would actually rub screaming if one ever came near me.

BruthasTortoise Sat 30-Mar-13 18:57:35

*run

iklboo Sat 30-Mar-13 19:44:39

Another clown phobic. People think it's funny to suddenly show me pictures. Usually 'horror' clowns as well. IT IS NOT FUNNY. I don't just 'not like' clowns. I am terrified of them.

Armagh: I've been up the sears and John Hancock towers too. I didn't like standing next to the window though. I got really dizzy and a bit shakey. However, being 4 rungs up a step-ladder in my own house is much, much worse. No idea why. I was a wreck while we were trying to pain the hall.

Sparklingbrook Sat 30-Mar-13 20:08:43

Domestic what's happening now? Are you able to avoid needles for the time being?

IncrediblePhatTheInnkeepersCat Sat 30-Mar-13 20:50:32

It's hard to find the line between fear and phobia. I have a strong fear of the following:
Spiders
Wasps
Slugs
Tunnels
Heights when behind glass (fine in open air)

But I think the one thing that counts as a true phobia (or near enough) is daddy long-legs. I can't catch a spider, but can use the long nozzle of the Hoover now on the small-medium ones (though with my skin crawling and through panicky tears). I can also kill wasps when needed on guide camps. Being a role model for children/teenagers has made me confront a lot as I don't want to freak them out too.

Daddy long-legs are the only stimulus I have very little control over. I can sometimes hold the scream in, but I dart around trying to get away from it and beg people to get rid of, if it's trapped in the room. I can't have the windows open when they are active and get jumpy outside.

I also have an anxiety disorder, which may affect some of my reactions.

Conversely, I'm fine with: reptiles, including snakes; most live rodents that my cat brings in (can pick up all except wild rats. Will handle pet rats though); the dark; thunderstorms; needles; dentists and flying.

It's quite interesting to try to work out why I've got the fear of some and not others. Not sure that it is all conditional/inherited. My dad was scared of snakes and heights, my mum is scared of big dogs and birds.

DomesticCEO Sun 31-Mar-13 08:17:58

Haven't had an injection for 3 1/2 years smile, since my youngest was born!

Sparklingbrook Sun 31-Mar-13 09:23:13

Phew Domestic. Really hope you can avoid the needles for as long as possible.

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