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Phobias Associated with Halloween
Around Halloween, authors take advantage of things that scare people. Some write stories that will keep you awake at night, others write stories that scare you for the moment. Take one of the following phobias associated with this scary time of year and write your own scary story around it.
The fear of darkness is known by many different names -myctophobia, nyctophobia, scotophobia, or achluophobia. Most children suffer from some degree of this fear at one time or another while growing up. It isn't so much a fear of the actual darkness, but a fear of the dangers that lurk in the darkness. The majority of people outgrow this fear, but there are those who carry this fear on into adulthood.
Melanophobia is fear of the color black. There is an absence of light in the color black. It is secretive and full of mystery, always keeping things hidden from view. Anyone who has melanophobia also probably has a fear of darkness.
Necrophobia is the abnormal fear of death or dead things. Those who have necrophobia also have a fear of things associated with death. This includes morgues, funerals, tombstones, and coffins. A person with necrophobia could possibly even have a serious dislike of nursing homes and hospitals, since they can be places of death. Would a person with necrophobia attend the funeral of a parent who died? Or would the fear overcome him and keep him away?
Nyctohylophobia is the fear of dark wooded areas or of forests at night. I see this as being closely related to the fear of darkness and the fear of the color black. There are things hidden in darkness that you cannot see. Even with a flashlight, in the deep darkness of the forest or woods at night, the presence of those wishing to cause you harm could easily be hidden. What malicious creatures are hiding amongst the trees just waiting for some unsuspecting person to pass by?
Panophobia or pantophobia is the fear of everything. Wow! How could one survive in this world if he had a fear of everything. Life would be miserable. I have read that a person with this fear has a vague feeling or persistent dread of some unknown evil that is out to get him, no matter where he is or what he is doing. In the supermarket, the check-out clerks are spying on him and reporting to their superiors everything that he buys. When he pays his bills, the companies are reporting how much he pays and when he pays it. He won't go out to eat. If he did, they would surely poison his food. Think about what a living hell the life of someone with panophobia would be.
Paphophobia is an intense and uncontrollable fear of graves. Hmmm. I wonder if it matters whether or not there is a body in the grave. Maybe that depends on how deeply the fear is implanted into whoever has it. This would probably be closesly related to necrophobia, the fear of death or dead things. If you want to place a character in a situation of intense fear, give her paphophobia, then have her kidnapped and buried alive in an unmarked grave.
A person with phagophobia, the fear of being eaten, may have watched just one too many horror flicks where there are monsters whose intent is to rip people to shreds and devour them. Is there a monster lurking in your closet that is just waiting on you to fall asleep? Is an alien salivating everytime it looks at you? Or maybe it is a human monster. Does your neighbor have a taste for human flesh? Has he been giving you strange and thoughtful glances lately? Maybe he has even been licking his lips while gazing at you longingly.
Phasmophobia is the fear of ghosts. There is an overwhelming amount of evidence on ghosts to be found in books, on television, on the movie screen, and on the internet. Many of these books, movies, and sites capitalize on the fact that many people are so afraid of ghosts. Are ghosts real? Or are they just a figment of people's imaginations?
Placophobia is the fear of tombstones. What could possibly be creepier than visiting a cemetery, located in a forest, that is full of tombstones that are falling apart on a moonless Halloween night? It would be extra-creepy if there was a serial killer on the loose, a killer who made a habit of grabbing his victims at night from the area the cemetery was located in.
Content copyright © 2013 by Lisa Binion. All rights reserved.
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