Inspirational

Arrhenphobia–the Fear of Men

IMG_0335Arrhenphobia is the fear of men. I am secretly praying Boston will have this one during her high school years.

Automysophobia is the fear of being dirty. Oh, what I would give for my kids to have just a touch of this one!

Blennophobia, the fear of slime–no Goosebumps’ episodes for these individuals.

Personally,  I think I have zoophobia, the fear of animals. They are fine from a distance but I get tense even having a small kitten too close. My poor kids who will forever be begging for a pet to no avail.

Not a phobia, just a childhood hesitation, Boston has been terrified of the slide all season. We go to the park almost daily and she has a great time swinging, climbing, running, yet never sliding. I tried encouraging her until blue in the face and finally just gave up, deciding there was always next year.

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Yesterday, as I was following my fearless son around, I noticed her sitting at the top of a very big slide. I didn’t say anything but watched the muscles moving in her face, noticing the way she was trying to muster up the courage to go. I didn’t think she would, but finally, and very slowly, she went down the slide, griping the sides, for the first time.

Immediately she turned to me with the proudest face I have yet seen and shouted with everything in her, “Mom, I did it! I am so brave! I am so brave! I am so brave!”

It was just a slide, she is only two, and yet, my heart exploded with pride in my little conqueror. There were parents around and so I refrained from doing the happy dance and instead shouted my praise (explaining to the other parents afterwords it was her first time doing such).

We spent another hour at the park doing just one thing: sliding. By the time we left there was not even a hint of fear as she allowed herself to fly to the bottom.

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Fear, we all have some form of it. Some are big, some are small, some are just plain unusual (like my fear of animals).

Boston would have missed out on a lot this summer had she not conquered that which gripped her. All the parks we will visit, all the new slides we will explore, the childhood excitement meant for her to experience, would have been traded in for a a boring walk down the steps again and again.

Watching my daughter has put a new resolve in me to not live my life in fear and miss out on all life has to offer.

Life is short–way too short to be spent any way other than all in.

Easier said than done, I am the first to know. It will most likely need to be conquered slowly at first, like my daughter gripping the sides all the way down. I do not care. I will not let it control me, no matter how long it takes.

From now on, this is the look I will give to my fears:

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Here’s to you: what fear is holding you back?

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25 thoughts on “Arrhenphobia–the Fear of Men

  1. Good for you!! That’s a great attitude. And good job to your daughter! What fear is holding me back…fear of failure? Whatever that means. Clearly these fears are self defeating.

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    1. I am with you in this one, even as it comes to parenting. It is so easy to fear all the ways I may fail as a mom but I cannot let myself go there. Thanks for sharing this!

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  2. This brought tears to my eyes. What a precious and yes very brave girl!!!!! Slides are scary because you have to let go. That is the hardest thing for all of us is letting go. I am going to take your approach as I do have many fears and worries and I’m going to think about her and the slide. What a great story and incredible insight. Thank her for me too!

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    1. Oh, I am glad it touched you! She is such an inspiration with her bold two year old self! 🙂 You are so right, it feels much safer to keep our feet on solid ground, yet letting go is the only way we will truly experience all this life has to offer.

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  3. Yay for your brave daughter! 😀 My boys were afraid of the giant bounce house at Busch Gardens but wanted so much to have fun with the rest of the kids. Charlie use to crawl around the edges every time. Finally, went to a birthday party that had a small rented bouncer. That was enough. Now when we go to Busch Gardens, we can hang out at the bounce house for at least an hour and they get all that extra energy out. 😉

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    1. How fun and what a great way to ease them into it! Such a great example of the way most of us will conquer our own fears–starting small and working our way up.

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  4. This is so magnificent and yet so sad…..she’s growing up your little one! But how lovely that she has a good springboard to jump from and how great that her “springboard” (mother) continues to grow to support her even more in the coming years!

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    1. Oh you are so kind, thanks!! I pray she will always feel this way about me. . . especially in the teenage years! 😉

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      1. There will be bumps, I’m sure, but you’ll grow through the bumps right along with her and you’ll both come out better on the other side of the teen years…..just remember the love is first and the rest of it is just window dressing.

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    1. Thanks, and yes it most definetely was! When we finally made it made it back to the privacy of our home we cheered once again and I allowed myself the freedom to fully express myself. 🙂

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    1. I am so happy she was able to influence more than just myself through her accomplishment! It is funny how becoming a mom seems to drastically raise our fear of failure. I am slowly learning to do the best I can and not allow myself to fear the rest. Thanks for sharing this!

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  5. My little one recently conquered her fear of the slide as well and I was so excited! Funny, how these little things make our days! She is precious btw!

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    1. Aw, thanks, she is a keeper! Yeah for your little one too!! It is such a magical moment to watch them overcome their fear and take the next step toward being a “big kid.” 🙂

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    1. Haha, yes, I did say I was going to conquer this fear! I do love animals from a distance though, and pics are my favorite way to observe them!! 🙂

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