King of Excellent (according to Scaryduck)

Tuesday, July 26

Without fear or phobia

The psychology behind phobias can be interesting. It has been proven that a toddler, with little or no knowledge of something, has no fear towards that object or situation. Yet, a learned response can lead to a phobia, but the learned response is not always through an experience. Let me explain.

Hands up who's afraid of spiders? Arachnophobia is one of the most common phobias, but who has had a bad experience with a spider? I must admit my skin crawls when I see a large house spider. I don't have a problem with money spiders or Tarantulas, just house spiders.

Another common phobia is a fear of heights. Why do we fear this, because if we'd had a bad experience from a great height, we would have ended up like a pancake on the pavement somewhere. Yet it is so common, it has an entire dictionary of terms. Acrophobia, Altophobia, Batophobia, Hypsiphobia or Hyposophobia are technical terms for vertigo. I'm the first to admit I have a terrible problem with heights. Until 1996 I didn't, but whilst travelling on the train up to Snowdon, a part of my brain made a "plink" noise inside, and now I have the "most worsest" case of height phobia. I cannot go up ladders, even stepladders. Near my local GP's surgery is a footbridge, and I cannot cross that without holding the rail and closing my eyes or I have to go on a 1/4 mile round trip to avoid it. Even roadbridges give me problems... There I am on a bridge getting crossed by 17 ton HGVs and I swear it still moves when I walk across it. (I know even I'm not that heavy!)

Since as far back as I can remember, I have suffered with Ceraunophobia; The fear of thunder. I have no problem with lightning, apart from I know that lightning will lead to the thunder. As a young boy I would stand and scream uncontrollably when there was a loud clap of thunder, and I vividly remember once leaping down an entire flight of stairs because it was quicker to get into the safe arms of my mum. I still shiver when it's nearby, but now I understand it a lot better, primarily because of an award winning documentary called "Electric Skies." My son is going the same way, but I'll show him the video as well, and he should calm down a bit hopefully.

More bizarrely, I have a Cuetophobia. This is normally in small proportions in people who bite their nails, because it is a fear of ripping a nail off. My mate Adrian is the worst for taking the mickey out of me for this. Once whilst driving he decided he was going to trim his nails in front of me, leading to me nearly crashing and him laughing like a maniac. He sent me this this morning. To be honest, I watched the first 2 seconds, and then stopped it. I don't know what it does, I don't want to know what it does, all I saw was a toe nail and a pair of pliers.

I wonder if there is a fear of Rovers? There should be. And most interestingly, there is a fear of Phobias, call Phobophobia. So would a fear of Phobophobia be called Phobophobophobia?

Such questions would keep me awake at night (somniphobia). Maybe I shouldn't write about them (graphophobia) even on the computer (technophobia), or I shouldn't talk to someone about them (phonophobia). It's food (Cibophobia) for thought (Phronemophobia)

Sod this, I'm off for a pint (Methyphobia)