The term “phobia” refers to the fear of a person who continues to exist, even though there is no real danger. It’s essentially an anxiety disorder characterized by an intense, persistent and irrational fear of an object, animal, space, or situation, which can only be overcome by avoiding the phobic object. With phobias, stress is caused by an intrapsychic conflict, transferred to a specific object, and then it manifests itself into an irrational fear.
There are many types of phobias. Some of them you may have already heard of such as claustrophobia, while others are quite unique, like the fear of being wealthy (chrometophobia). Imagine you won in an online casino, and then you would be too afraid to collect the money. As for strange phobias in general, it has been proven that phobias have been “invented” for almost anything. And as funny as they may seem to us, many people suffer.
If you thought you knew phobias, then continue reading as there are many that you may not have even heard of.
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The most uncomfortable phobia surely is optophobia. It describes the fear of opening someone’s eyes. We open and close our eyes without even thinking, yet for the people who suffer from this phobia, their life can be a nightmare. Fortunately, if you’re reading this article, you probably don’t suffer from this condition.
People suffering from it are afraid to cook and always order out food for delivery. In another manifestation of the phobia, the person may feel intimidated by people capable of cooking, making them feel inadequate in front of them.
Demonophobes suffer from a persistent phobia of evil entities. They believe that these entities roam free and can cause bodily harm. They are terrified of supernatural conversations, they can’t find themselves in dark places, and they’re unable to watch movies with demonic possession or exorcism.
A rare but unfortunate condition, heliophobia refers to the fear of sunlight. Not only does exposure to the sun cause severe feelings of anxiety and panic in sufferers, but these people may also experience fear of bright lights. Most often, this condition is associated with anxiety about the perceived dangers of the sun.
Phobia of 666 (Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia)
Those who are afraid of the number 666 have six hundred and sixty-six phobias. If you have seen the relevant episode of Futurama with the phobia of numbers, you will understand. The protagonist is afraid of the number 0101100101, which looks like the number 666 in the binary system when it’s reflected in the mirror. Many people avoid the number 666 as their home address. For example, Ronald Reagan and his wife changed their home number from 666 to 668 when they moved to Los Angeles. Some people block the “666” satellite channel on their TV. Others drive to their neighborhood just to change the mileage from 666 to 667. Where does this phobia come from? Many believe that everything happens for a reason. They find a connection between accidental events. Maybe, let’s say, they called a number ending in 666 and broke their leg the same day. This phobia can also be genetic.
Instagram, with all these photos that focus on the sky, is a scary place for those who have nephophobia. They fear the clouds both in real life and in photographs. Over time it can take a different form and transform into a fear of fog or wind. Imagine how difficult it is for these people who are on a flight or just coming out of their house, and the wind starts to blow. This phobia is often due to traumatic events in the past.
Umbilical cord phobia is the fear of the navel. You may wonder, “What’s scary about navels? They may look like a balloon knot, but why be afraid of them?” Well, a navel is often associated with the mother’s womb. Some people mistakenly believe that playing with their navel and touching it accidentally can kill them. People with this phobia try not to touch their navel when bathing. Some of them even put something on the spot to protect it and avoid going to the beach.
Rain may be a good way for many to meditate, but not for those with ombrophobia. Yes, it is about the fear of rain. People who suffer from it never miss a weather report. Even the thought of rain or its mention makes them anxious. When the first drops fall, they panic and run to find a shelter. You may think this is a normal human reaction, but not everyone gets panic attacks at the sight or sound of rain. Obviously it does not cause you tachycardia and tremor. This phobia usually comes from a child’s traumatic experience, or if someone’s parents often threatened that if he went out in the rain, he would get sick.
Father-in-law phobia is the fear of mothers-in-law. Tensions between a man and his mother-in-law may be a popular issue, but father-in-law phobia is no joke for those who experience it. Corresponding phobias are patriotophobia (the fear of the father) and matriphobia (the fear of the mother). If your spouse seems to be very scared of your mother, do not blame him. This phobia is almost entirely genetic. In other cases, it may come from identifying with a scene from a movie or a TV series.
Tryphobia is the fear of objects that have many holes. Honeycombs, sponges, strainers, and corals make hundreds of people suffering from this phobia panic. They consider all these tiny holes dangerous.
It’s the phobia of time. People who suffer from it can’t enjoy life to the fullest, as they constantly think that time is running out. We all know that we can not stop it or turn it back but some of us find this unbearable. Older people and prisoners tend to suffer from this phobia more often. They see time differently, and it’s tragic in both cases. The most famous chronophobic is Rip Van Winkle. He once took a nap and woke up 20 years later when all his friends and family were dead. He overcame chronophobia as he made new friends and built new memories. Maybe this can also work in real life.
It’s the fear of laughing at inappropriate times or environment, like at a funeral. This happens when our body tries to “protect” us with an illusion of joy in a shocking moment. You may have acquired this phobia if you were reprimanded for laughing in a similar case and pointed out that this is awful or if you were punished for it as a child.
Is there a way to overcome all these phobias? Today’s popular healing methods are all kinds of breathing exercises. Remember that it’s much easier to manage any anxiety if you fully understand why and what exactly is causing it.