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It worries me.

I think I am insufficiently afraid of bears.

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aghrivaine
Jun. 3rd, 2006 03:44 pm (UTC)
Maybe either Pinocchio or the story of Jonah and the Leviathan really scared you as a kid? Because the inside of an enclosed stadium could seem like the belly of a whale.

Note: Do not, not ever, listen to "The Mariner's Revenge Song" by the Decemberists.
fenriss
Jun. 3rd, 2006 10:59 pm (UTC)
Huh. I guess that could be. I'm not aware of any such trauma, but then, one often isn't consciously aware of that kind of thing.

I think there is some other element to it, though. When I was little, I used to sometimes get into this very upsetting state of mind where I felt... too far away from everything. The walls in my room seemed to recede, and I felt dwarfed by the size of the empty space around me. It's why I wanted a canopy bed so badly (not, as with other little girls, because it was cute and girly). It made me feel more enclosed.

I used to say that it was sort of "claustrophilia" but that's not quite right. The largeness of open spaces aren't so scary, but enormous rooms, with vaulted ceilings made me dizzy with fear. It's worth noting that the first time I because aware of my fear of whales was when I was 13, and walked into the Hall of Mammals in the Natural History Museum. Whoa. Huge room plus blue whale. I was momentarily catatonic.

So, I still wonder about this. The word that seems to describe the fear best is "kenophobia" which means something like "fear of voids or emptiness". There's virtually nothing online about it. I suppose I should check in with a therapist about that or something, huh?
parchmentheart
Jun. 4th, 2006 01:12 pm (UTC)
I had a friend who was afraid of large indoor spaces too. She traced it back when she was a little girl to a Convention where she went into a tent-spook-house and was scared by a large spider and then she was back out in the big echoey, people-filled place. She doesn't much like crowds either.

Your experience with the Hall of Mammals sounds similar. Were there sound effects? I mean whales make freaky sounds even to me.
aghrivaine
Jun. 4th, 2006 05:09 pm (UTC)
I've actually gotten that same sense of vertigo when in a wide-open but enclosed space. Particularly if I look up. It's not fear, exactly, just a sudden sense of diziness.

Does it bother you enough that you feel you need therapy? It sort of just seems like a quirk to me.
fenriss
Jun. 5th, 2006 02:35 am (UTC)
Ehh, it's not that much of a problem, really. It's just that I wonder if it might be a key to understanding other, more significant problems. Like, if I can find the root cause of these phobias, maybe that'll lead to some revelations. I don't know.
aghrivaine
Jun. 5th, 2006 02:39 am (UTC)
Well, the way I see it you have two options. One, you could go through the expensive and painful process of therapy. Or, alternatively, you could take the easy way, and bring about the extermination of all whales.

Up to you.

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