Trypophobia

October 20, 2010

Recently I learned I have  phobia I didn’t know existed. It’s called trypophobia and is fairly specific. It’s the fear of small holes in asymmetrical clusters. Such as seen in tripe. This is why lotus seed pods give some of us the heebie-damn-jeebies.

If the above image makes “start to feel really uncomfortable” and gives you a “creepy, itchy feeling crawls over your body”, well, I’m afraid you suffer from Trypophobia.

I think this phobia exists in myself because I have a natural, healthy fear of having infected, rotting flesh. Or exposed viscera. Or having parasites burrow into my flesh. This article states that holes in flesh are a common trigger of the symptoms of this phobia:

Holes which occur in different types of tissues, human and animal, this is quite a big category. Human pores on their skin, if enlarged, blackheads, pockmarks left by acne or other skin disorders. Holes in skin caused by creatures that may have eaten through the skin creating a hole… There are lots of completely disgusting holes found in various types of offal… things like worms and maggots and stuff eating into things and creating holes in materials and foods…”

Well, no kidding, hey? No wonder lotus seed pod photo-manipulations give me such a bad feeling. If anything looks like larval parasites emerging from infected flesh, it’s those damn seed pods. Excuse me while I upchuck into the recycling basket.

Okay, I’m back. Don’t they just make you want to pick them all out and douse those wounds with antiseptic and then wrap that poor girl’s limbs tightly in clean bandages?

Then vomit for about three days?

Then wage war on whatever alien race sent their spores across the galaxy to infest us?

Regardless, the article also goes on to say “Holes created in ice and snow as it melts” which have never given me a bad feeling. That might be taking the phobia little too far.

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Jakob is co-host of the Nerd Hurdles podcast and runs the Arachnidiscs music label.


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