a tale of tails, tenacity, and tedium, as told by me, usually barefoot and bellowing

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Phobias and Phears

My recent tarantula post made me think about phobias, an irrational, intense and persistent fear of certain situations, activities, things, animals or people.

We all have something that just twists our insides, makes us break out in a cold sweat or freezes us in fear like a deer in headlights.  Some have fear of flying as I read on a recent post and some have fear of spiders as I read in my comments. We all have fears, many seem irrational to us but for the people who experience them, they are very real.

I knew a man who was afraid of the cotton in the top of medicine bottles.  He could not remove it, could not touch it, and you could chase him a mile with a cotton ball.

I have had two fears in my life, irrational but real. 
One was needles.  This was not a problem before my surgery.  I could take a shot with the best of them.  The night following my surgery, I got shots, lots of them, so many in fact, my husband stood between the nurse and me and said no more shots. We later discovered I was not only receiving my shots but also those of another patient.  All I remembered was white uniforms and the needles. 

I did not know this had a lasting impression on me until two years later when my doctor mentioned I needed a shot.  I immediately crawled to the corner and was screaming, no shots! NO SHOTS!

I used to give our animals shots and discovered I could no longer even touch a needle.  This changes your whole world, no dentists, no doctors, no vaccinations for the animals...I had to do something so I took the bull by the horns.  I started by looking at the needle, forcing myself to hold it.  I worked on this for months to over come it.  At the dentist, I explained and he was very careful to warn me and keep the needle out of sight.  It took me almost three years to over come this so I know how crippling phobias can be.
My second phobia is scorpions.  I stepped on one as a small child.  I didn't know I had this fear until I saw one in the floor after I was married.  I climbed on a chair and was hollering like the woman in the cartoons when she sees a mouse.  The pain of the sting I had when I was a child returned, shooting from foot to hip.
I kept this fear for a very long time.  Hubby could get me to do anything if he had a scorpion! (He's just a tad ornery, like me)

My children grew and knew of my fear.  As young teens, they and my nephew captured a scorpion and hot glued him in a jar lid.  It was gift to help overcome my fears.  I also have been presented with scorpion paperweights. 

It was a long haul but I have over come this one too.  My heart still speeds up, but I can kill them now and not run like a striped ape when I see one.

What are your fears and phobias?  Do you actively try to over come them and how?

I look forward to your answers.

22 comments:

Holly Jahangiri said...

I have very similar fears. I also fear sharing them here, lest some well-meaning friend on the Internet send them to me, hot glue-gunned to the lid of a jar. ;)

Actually, spiders and needles top the list, I think. I once saw three harmless jumping spiders on my doorknob and almost threw my house keys and a quitclaim deed at them.

LindaG said...

I hate bugs. Spiders, roaches, anything that suddenly appears or sneaks up on you. If they are outdoors, I leave them alone. (Avoid them, haha.) If they are indoors, they die.

I also hate needles. But I just turn my head and let the doctor get on with it. I was never given the wrong shots. I would have been quite annoyed.

Congrats to you on overcoming your fears. :)

COUNTRY GAL said...

I dont "fear" bugs just dont like some of them. My brother used to keep all kinds of weird animals and bug like things so I had been around them just didnt like some to much . I have had a boa snake around me and held a Komoto dragon for a demonstraion at a reptile zoo that was cool ! My fear is getting caught in a fire thats my real true fear !

Sunny said...

Now I know you will laugh at this but I have a fear of choking to death! This goes back to when I was a child and choked on a hard candy. If I think about that incident while I'm eating, I almost start to choke! LOL!
Another thing that I USED to fear now I just HATE is clowns - hahaha! Yes you read it right...clowns! It's a very long story - LOL!
☼ Sunny

Chickadee said...

For a long time I was afraid of snakes...scream and run the other way scared. Then I spent a summer working outdoors and saw a lot of snakes...they were mostly at a distance and I was not in any danger of close contact. I knew I was over my snake phobia when at the end of the summer, I was walking in a field of tall grass when I almost stepped on a snake and didn't flinch. A few years ago I was in a small barn with a few people and had a young kingsnake fall in front of us from the rafters. Didn't flinch then either.

My phobia of wasps still continues though...I am freakishly afraid of wasps. I'm even too afraid to try to kill them. What if I fail and the thing comes after me?

Jules said...

Cock roaches! But not so that I can not squish them :)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

ellen abbott said...

Can't think of anything myself but my daughter was born with an irrational fear of dogs. She finally overcame it when we got a puppy when she was 12 or 13.

Mel said...

My number one fear would have to be... heights, I have tried to overcome this, however, I get to a certain height and seem to shrink as I go, until, I find myself sitting and scooting back towards the ground.

Second fear, Dentists... I had an assistant hold me down while a dentist gave me a shot in the pallet of my mouth, it hurt so bad it took me over 5 yrs. to go back to a dentist. I do go regularly now, but it's definately fearful.

Snakes, I don't know why, I just know when they sneak up on me, I screech and I get tingly fingers... I try to, like them... but mostly avoid them.

I feel like we are in group therapy for our fear issues... LOL

Have a good one!
Mel

Judy said...

Crazy people with knives...really scary...

Pat said...

First of all, remind me never to get into a Christmas grab bag with your family! Glued scorpions on jar caps? No thanks!

I am afraid of water. I mean, I shower and everything, :) I can't swim. I get the willies just walking along the edge of the deep end of a pool. I almost drowned a couple of times in high school. When we go to the beach (which I love) I only go in the water to the most up to my hips. I watch for waves. I was afraid of Tsunamis before they were even popular!

allhorsestuff said...

This one will shock ya...
Riding my mare in arena- with people watching me.
It is not the people really...but her "rememberance of Pain". So at anytime-she can explode...that is a problem that makes me tense,nervious, sweat..all of it!

And yea...I try to overcome.
I just moved- to the dreaded=arena!!
I may live, or I may die this time...time will tell.

Other than that...spiders, snakes...the normal things...
"~' KK

Pyatshaw said...

Needles, for me, especially dental ones, for no apparent reason. I cannot watch anything on TV if it involves a jab and I have my eyes tight shut at the dentist in case I see the "thing". Also mice and rats. A friend had a pet rat (OMG!) and I couldn't visit her!

~Tonia said...

Big Spiders! They make me light headed, sick to my stomach and freaked out.. I scream for the girls or Kyle whoever is closest. I know why too.. When I was about 5we lived in a house infested with big brown spiders. Several times I would find them crawling on me and I would scream, cry and dance allover the place.I can still feel it..
I use to be scared of the dark but it doesnt bother me anymore.

Nick said...

Let's hope there is never an outbreak of blogophobia - or we'll all be out of a "job."

Clarissa Draper said...

I'm only really afraid of closed spaces. But, I can see how needles and scorpions can be scary as well.

CD

Gus, Louie and Callie said...

We are sure glad that you have overcome your phobias..
Grandma is afraid of snakes. She has never over came that...

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

Barb said...

I used to be afraid of dentists. Now I just intensely dislike them. I have no reason for this fear, I have good teeth - or did but they're suffering from neglect now:(

Nora said...

I am scared of heights and small enclosed spaces. So I'll never get on top of a tall building or be a spelunker.

Rusty said...

Hmmm, well needles - I went through desentization shots way back when needles were often poorly sharpened! As for critters, I think the only thing that would greatly worry me would be if I lived in a place where there were scorpions. Snakes and spiders don't worry me somehow. Strange. ATB!

Rusty said...

Oh yes, I have to add one other very real fear of man made heights! Just the thought of changing a light bulb set up very high in a deep stairwell beside a two story window gives me the shivers! (Wry grin). ATB!

Far Side of Fifty said...

SSSSnakes..they do me in..I cannot even look at them on TV..I did do better after trying to watch Jeff Corwins adventure show when they were looking for a new host..they handled lots of snakes..I am sure it was because I like and would trust Jeff..but then the show was over, I did learn alot..but I will always be afraid..I am sure of it. I am a big ole chicken:(

Kana said...

Most of your fears seem pretty reasonable, based on your own bad past experiences...and of dangerous things, which is only practical!

The best neurotic phobias are always the ones that are nonthreatening or unlikely, I think...an irrational fear of ladybugs. (http://lostinthehive.blogspot.com/search?q=ladybug)

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