Ever since I can remember (at least 6 years old) I have had bad anxiety and the earliest memory I have is always being sick! I used to be sick on long car journeys, (sometimes before I even got in the car because the thought alone made me panic) on the way to the airport, at the airport, on the plane, on buses, on coaches, going to school and later in life going to parties, job interviews and even going on dates.
For some reason whenever I am anxious, nervous, excited, scared, overly happy, or feel any other kind of strong emotion… I am sick! Haha! I have no idea why, I must just have a very sensitive nervous system or something. The fact I was always sick however made me develop a massive phobia about being sick and sick in general and it’s only within the past few years that I have discovered this phobia actually has a name… Emetophobia.
Emetophobia is more than just a general of phobia of being sick! It’s a terrifying fear of being sick in front of others, being sick in general, seeing or hearing others being sick and in my case even hearing the word ‘sick!’ I have noticed recently that whenever I feel sick, it is my Emetophobia that causes my actual panic attacks to start and this in turn actually makes me sick.
Emetophobia causes me to overcook meat incase I get food poisoning and it makes me sick, It’s one of the main reasons I no longer drink alcohol – because alcohol used to make me sick, I dread getting pregnant because the thought of morning sickness brings me out in panic, The thought of travelling or being a passenger causes me huge anxiety incase I am sick, I avoid theme parks and any form of rides incase they make me feel sick, If I feel sick I won’t eat anything until the feeling passes incase it makes me sick and I will avoid being around anyone with bugs and the thought of them makes me panic. I didn’t actually realise I did all of these things until I looked up this phobia! I thought I was ‘normal’ all of this time.
This phobia is actually one of the most common phobias out there and I was surprised at how many people admitted to having it, after I had told them about mine. I therefore thought it was important to share this blog post to help others that may be suffering in silence. I have tried Counselling and Hypnotherapy for my phobia, however they didn’t work for me and if anything they actually made me worse! I think this is because they make you analyse everything which just brings on my anxiety even more. I have found the best way for me to deal with this phobia is try and live with it, accept it and do the things I fear anyway. I think this is the reason my phobia is not quite as bad as it used to be.
I used to avoid doing a lot of things because of my phobia, however I have got better at ‘forcing’ myself to do the things that make me anxious. One of the main things that still brings on my phobia is travelling and tomorrow I am a passenger for a few hours in a car, which hasn’t happened for a long time because I am so used to driving myself everywhere. I am therefore feeling rather anxious tonight incase I am sick, even though that hasn’t actually happened since I was a kid! The same thoughts and feelings still appear sometimes and I have to talk myself out of my phobias. On the actual day I am usually fine, it’s always the night before that I’m not!
I hope this blog post has helped some of you and if you’d like to know anything else drop me a comment below…