Spiders. Yuk! There is no other word to use. Don’t bother crawling out of the woodwork (see what I did there?!) and telling me they are good for keeping the fly population down. I’m not interested. They are hideous, creepy crawly, freaky, eight legged beasties.
Deep breath. I don’t have a fear of spiders I have a full blown phobia. ‘An irrational fear of something which one is compelled to avoid despite awareness and reassurance that it is not dangerous’ yup, that sums it up nicely!
Once I became a parent I was determined not to pass my phobia onto my children. My dad hates spiders but I didn’t know that until I was a teenager – he hid it very well, always disposing of the creatures for me. Or at least, as I also found out, telling me he had disposed of them when they had actually disappeared behind something and couldn’t be removed. What you don’t know….I suppose.
Well, once I had children I would catch any spiders in my trusty spider catcher (plastic pyramid with a trapdoor attached to a long stick) and ooh and aah at how amazing those little devils were. All the time shuddering inside and wanting to get rid of the thing as fast as possible.
And yet, despite my hard work, neither of them like spiders. Olivia in particular has developed a fear of them. Possibly because of Ben doing the kind ‘big brother thing’ and putting a plastic spider on her shoulder a few months ago. She screamed and sobbed and has been terrified of them ever since. Last week she refused to walk past a lamppost which had a small spider dangling from it. I was very brave and walked (quickly) past to show it was fine but she would not budge. At the time I thought maybe she will grow out of it but then yesterday I spotted one on the kitchen ceiling and it was only when I got desperate for a cup of tea that I ran underneath – holding a box over my head obvs.
So, maybe phobias are inherited? Perhaps no matter what Olivia was guaranteed to be scared of spiders? Well according to a quick Internet search that’s not the case. But I’m not convinced. I genuinely could not have tried harder to stop my anxiety being passed on but it seems to have made no difference at all.
Anyway, I have to move now. There is a daddy long legs on the window and he’s definitely staring at me. *backs out of room slowly*
*I couldn’t even bring myself to put a photo of a real spider on this post. (There is nothing worse than a newspaper article about arachnophobia with an enormous picture of a tarantula) so instead here is a reasonably friendly picture. Still makes me shudder.