In Greek mythology, Deimos and Phobos were the gods of fear, or fear personified. Deimos represented creeping terror and dread (think the part of the horror movie when you realize you’re trapped in the house with a killer), and Phobos represented panic (the part of the horror movie where you’ve seen one friend killed and start to run).
And while fear has been around since the beginning, it wasn’t until around the 1700s that English speakers started adding “phobia” onto the end of nouns to mean “the fear of.”
Phobias are generally broken down into 3 categories. First, specific or simple phobias are the most common and are triggered by specific objects like spiders. Second, there are Agoraphobia phobias, which center the fear around being in a situation with no easy escape without embarrassment, like having a panic attack when you’re stuck in an airplane (been there, no shame) . The third type is Social phobia which can cause extreme anxiety in public or social situations and can lead to low self-esteem. This third type can cause many social issues such as dropping out of school and being unable to make friends.
Are you ready to see what some people are strangely petrified of? Here are the 25 Strangest Phobias You Could Have.
In a sort of modern day vampirism, heliophobia is actually defined as fear of the sun. Although it sounds harmless, it can actually be quite serious and lead to a vitamin D deficiency as a result of staying indoors. From helio, the Greek word for sun.
Taken from the Greek word khaite, meaning long or flowing hair, chaetophobia is the fear of hair. Although some people with chaetophobia only fear loose or detached hair, others can be terrified by the hair on their very own bodies.
Sometimes not wanting to eat your veggies goes beyond simple stubbornness and junk food cravings. Sometimes it’s lachanophobia, which is fear of vegetables (lachno being the Greek word for vegetable). While you might not tremble in fear at the sight of Bob the Tomato, for some people, this fear is very real, and the sight or smell of veggies can cause shortness of breath and nausea. We sincerely hope every lachanophobic takes their vitamins.
A very rare and specific phobia, haphepobia is the fear of being touched. It’s more than just not “liking” being touched, but an actual fear that can cause anxiety, nausea, increased heart rate, hyperventilation, and panic attacks. From the Greek haphe, meaning “touch.”
A fear of the kitchen or family sofa might sound amusing, but oikophobia is a fear of home surroundings. In the wake of hysteria following the 2016 election cycle, it’s also come to mean fear of one’s fellow countrymen. This is probably something we should really address as a nation. Seems unhealthy. From the Greek word oikos, meaning “home.”