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Arachnophobia -how bad is yours?

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Alright...so I'm scared of something that's probably less than 1000th my size. Now these are about the only animals in the world I'm afraid of. I love and like to read about animals from single cell, to great apes. I love all the other animals people are afraid of or disgusted by...I find rats and snakes absolutely adorable, I handle night-crawlers with ease ...and snails are one of my favorite animal and yes even slugs too, because they have a snails cute face. They say if you learn about an animal you are afraid of that's one way to get rid of your phobia ....doesn't work on me. In the US we're very lucky, most of our spiders are harmless. If you live in the southern US (like I do) there's only 2 spiders that are dangerous and they both pretty much can be avoided if you know their habitats and behavior, plus, they're both shy, and unlikely to be run into if you know what places to avoid...and if treated quickly, they arent even deadly. My arachnophobia is pretty bad... Right after seeing a spider I have goose bumps and the shivers, and jump at anything that touches my skin including my own body hair, my clothes,blankets, even my cats whiskers when he sniffs me before rubbing against me. Right now after seeing a wolf spider by my apartment door, more than 6 hours ago I'm huddling on my chair looking up at the ceiling and the floor every once in a while legs tucked safely under my butt. I was trying to identify it on websites with pictures and it made it worse...I found out that its very non-aggressive and will run away from you usually...this still doesn't help but learning about its habits was useful in learning how to avoid them from now on, and how to kill them. I noticed it on the way from getting something out of my car, I didn't have my usual blanching and shivering spell because my psychiatrist upped my Zoloft... I did jump over where it was and still am afraid to open the door and go outside to get things.... I wont go outside, and check the door behind a corner before walking past the door to see if it got in. I swear, If my house was on fire, I'd still run and jump over that thresh-hold because id still be thinking about that spider.

I almost fainted watching "Infested" about these people infested by Hobo spiders that don't even live around here.

If walking under a web, I'll check down my back and my hair for hours afterwards if seeing one on the floor I'll poke my head to scan the floor before walking into any room for months after seeing a big one in my house.

It effects my life drastically when at home, leaving me in a state of constant fear for months ...then I'll stop my behavior until I see another one again. Once my cat got out and stuck under some stairs and I had to get someone else to get him. I'm thinking about buying one of those radiation suits or beekeeper suit if it ever happens again, that's the ONLY way id ever go down there. Once I had one crawl over my shoe at work and I ran around the store screaming getitoffgetitoffgetitoffgetitoff...like a crazy person ...I was very embarrassed.

Now, here's the weird thing about my arachnophobia...I'm not scared by all spiders...I even think those colorful jumping spiders with the big eyes are cute and have a couple of pics of them in my "cute animals" folder...and they bite people more than any other spider...and its supposed to be painful. Tarantulas don't bother me either, I'd pick them up with gloves, bare hands if I wasn't afraid of being bitten...they are so furry and they remind me more of crabs (which i like...snow crabs freak me out just a little because they look a lot like spiders. lynx and crab spiders I'll only brush off if they are on me, and continue as if nothing happened. most little spiders that are in my house I'll only yelp once and kill immediately...and if they're one of those spiders that just chill outside all day in the big circular web like those brown garden spiders (I can watch that "Spiders on drugs" that has these spiders in it, with glee with no chills and have watched it back to back several times because its so funny) I'll leave them alone as long as they stay far away from my door, if they do come around my door, I'll just move them with a broom (at arms length) but I wont kill them. But I would scream and do the getitoffme dance if one fell on me. The ones that I'm terrified of are those Southern house spiders (male and female both) wolf spiders, and anything bigger than my fingernail that doesn't have its butt glued to a web outside. I'm brave enough to kill them , but for hours suffering all of the above

So that's MY arachnophobia its gotten worse the older I get, I'm 30. I would like to hear suggestions and other peoples stories about how severe their arachnophobia is and how people who are cured got cured. I'll always hate those Southern house spiders and will always kill them, but at least I can go on with my life because they are some of the harmless , non-aggressive spiders around.

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Hi Mere_Kat

Firstly a huge welcome to phobia support

Secondly my apologies for late reply to your post but i have not been well

I myself do not have a fear of spiders but my daughter who is the same age as yourself used to be so petrified of them she would be hysterical even seeing a tiny one out the window and where we live there not even dangerous

Now here comes the best part 2 years ago she informed us she was away to travel around Australia well i couldent beleive it as we all know there are lots of deadly spiders there but she went and don't ask my how but she overcame her fear of them i think perhaps due to seeing the other people being fearless she herself got cured

Sorry i cannot be of more help but i am sure there are more members on here that have your fear and i hope they will be able to post some words of encourgement etc to help you

love dino



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Hey bud, I feel your pain. I'm 23 years old and I feel as if our situations are similar to an extent. let me first explain as to how I believe I became afraid of spiders. I was around the age of 13-14 somewhere around there. I had gotten home from school and would always get into my house by going through my garage. well, one day I got home and I saw a spider about the size of a nickel that was carrying some sort of sack on its back, at the time not realizing it was probably a nest... so being the kid i was at the time i stepped on the spider, but only about really stepped on half of it... and to my surprise the little "nest" broke open and it looked like thousands of baby spiders started running everywhere. many of them running into the insides of my shoes, i panicked and quickly kicked my shoes off, but the damaged had been done... the next morning i woke up with about 40-50 tiny little red bumps on my feet stretching up to the top of my ankles. Since that day my fear of spiders has severely progressed, now some 10 years later its unbelievable the terror i feel when i see spiders, i cant even look at pictures of spiders. and those very unfortunate times where i notice a spider on me i freak out seriously, i panic, start to sweat, and recently have gotten feelings as if i am going to pass out, and start to see stars.... I've read techniques about it being as simple as to just "face your fears" but my fears have become a phobia and that is not even an option to me.

any questions? shoot me a message, I'd be glad to help in anyway I can.

~ Kyle

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