Living with Phobias

There are hundreds of different phobias in the world and over 19 million people experience these intense fears, ranging from the fear of spiders to the fear of human-looking inanimate objects, and even the dark.

Arachnophobia, the extreme or irrational fear of spiders affects over 6% of the global population.

“I had a spider crawl on me in my sleep and I really didn’t enjoy it,” junior Anna Villalobos said. “I have tried to overcome it. There was a daddy long leg in my bedroom and I knew that I had to kill it, so I tried, but it didn’t happen.”

Some phobias can even make people nauseous, like trypophobia, which is the fear of clusters of small holes or bumps.

“I’ve tried to make myself stare at a collection of pictures that contain these clusters,” junior Amanda Dante said. “But I just end up getting really dizzy and about thirty minutes later, I throw up. I still haven’t faced my fear.”

Thalassophobia, the fear of the ocean, is also very common and affects over 9% of the population.

“Knowing that there are animals in the water that can hurt me is what started my phobia,” an anonymous source said, “Swimming in the lake is the worst because you can’t ever see what’s underneath you. It’s especially hard on vacation when my family wants to get on the boat or surf, and I just really don’t want to.”

Some fears are rare and don’t normally become a full-blown phobia, such as automatonophobia, but it can.

“I have automatonophobia, which is the fear of human-like figures,” junior Amanda Rodriguez said. “I try to reassure myself that they aren’t human and that they’re just something creative that people make to entertain others. It doesn’t really affect me as much today as it did when I was younger.”

A phobia that is widely known and experienced by many is nyctophobia, or the extreme fear of the dark.

“For me, I think horror movies started it all. Naturally, people get scared after watching a scary movie and later being by themself,” junior Rosalia Nava said. “For me, it’s a bit difficult at sleepovers when the lights go out, but sometimes you just have to fake it until you make it.”