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Nephophobia and Other Phobias
Some of us are afraid of spiders, some of us are afraid of burglars, yet others are afraid of heights. But how many of us are afraid of these things to such an extent that it inhibits our daily lives? How many of our fears prevent friendships? Are there any of us who won't go certain places or attend certain events because of our fears?
Phobias are fears that affect some people so deeply that they make lifestyle changes to accommodate their fear. They live their lives so that, if at all possible, they won't have to confront what they are so afraid of, the things they fear so deeply.
In no way should anyone who has a phobia be made fun of or belittled, but writers can use phobias to deepen their characters, to make them seem more real, and to add secondary plots to the story. What caused your character to develop this phobia? Is he trying to overcome it? Or is he just dealing with it as best he can? Do the people he associates with tease him because of his phobia?
Methyphobia or potophobia is the intense, irrational fear of alcohol. Those suffering from this phobia may avoid attending gatherings where alcohol will be present. They may end up missing out on weddings of close family members just to avoid being around alcoholic beverages.
Gephyrophobia is an irrational fear of crossing bridges. At times, this phobia can extend to other manmade structures, such as roller coasters. The person could fear having an accident in the heavy traffic, especially if the bridge is overttop of a body of water. He could possibly fear losing control of his vehicle while on the bridge. He may not ride roller coasters for fear that they may fly off the track.
Batophobia is the irrational and persistant fear of being close to high buildings, including skyscrapers and other extremely tall structures. A person who suffers from this fear would probably be more comfortable living in the country, away from any really tall buildings.
Ballistophobia is an irrational fear of bullets and missiles; an irrational fear of being shot. A person afflicted with this phobia would want to avoid living anywhere around a shooting range. It is unlikely he would join the military or be in the police force. I also doubt that this individual would own a firearm of any kind.
Geniophobia, an extremely rare phobia, is the irrational fear of chins. Yes, I did say chins. Chins come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. There are big chins, small chins, butt chins, square chins, and double chins. I have no clue how a person with this phobia would stay away from chins. I mean, the person himself would even have one!
Nephophobia is the fear of clouds. I wonder, would a person with nephophobia look in the sky to see what pictures the clouds formed? Are they afraid of the dark, ominous clouds that say a ferocious storm is heading their way? Does their fear of clouds extend even to the fluffy clouds that look like giant cotton balls? There isn't a lot of information on this phobia, but no matter, as a writer that shouldn't stop you from afflicting your character with this fear and deciding how it affects him.
Porphyrophobia is an irrational and intense fear of the color purple. Avoiding purple should be easy, right? Well, a person with this phobia could avoid owning any clothing or any other items that were the color purple, but what about friends? A person with porphyrophobia couldn't expect his or her friends to never wear purple, to not have any items that are purple. How would your character deal with having this phobia? Would he become a recluse, just to keep from possibly being around anything purple?
Mageirocophobia is the fear of cooking. This phobia takes many different forms. Some people are afraid that the food they cook will cause someone to become ill. Others are afraid that they are unable to season the food properly and that it will turn out to be inedible. A few are more worried over how their food appears; they want everything to look perfect. Then there are those who worry about burning or cutting themselves while preparing the food. Some tend to be intimidated by recipes and are afraid of skipping a step or leaving out an ingredient.
From one who cooks and is definitely not afraid of it, I think that at one time or another we all feel one of the above forms of mageirocophobia to a certain extent. Unless it interferes with your daily life, though, it isn't considered to be a phobia.
Crystallophobia is the fear of crystals or glass. Could a person with this phobia be afraid of getting cut by breaking glass? Would they be afraid to be around something that is made out of glass, such as a mirror? Would the mere mention of glass send this person into a frenzy?
Kakorrhaphiophobia is the abnormal fear of defeat or failure. I'm sure that each one of us has been afraid of failure at one time or another, but the majority of us don't let this fear consume our lives. An individual suffering from kakorrhaphiophobia would allow this fear to rule everything he does. I imagine that he would not play many games, not would he pursue anything that presented any difficulty. I see this individual as having a pretty dull and boring life, empty of challenges.
Deipnophobia is an abnormal fear of dining or dinner conversations. Those with this phobia tend to eat alone, not only be their choice, but maybe even by the choice of others. They would want the meal to be eaten in complete silence. If you are anything like me, you like to converse with others while dining. Some are also fearful of others watching them eat, do they would prefer to just dine alone.
Content copyright © 2013 by Lisa Binion. All rights reserved.
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