My whole childhood and early adulthood (mostly during childhood) I had a recurring nightmare. In it, my skin was slowly turning into a honeycomb-like texture. I had this nightmare for most of my childhood, but never told anybody about it until I was an adult. But since then, I’ve had a “fear” of holes. I’m not sure “fear” is the right word… maybe aversion. Things with series of holes (sponges, honeycombs, seedpods, English muffins, the way little bubbles come to the surface when garlic is cooking in oil, olive loaf meat, etc.) make me uneasy, sick, itchy, and give me physical anxiety symptoms (the shakes, skin crawling feeling, nausea, spins/dizziness, heart racing, etc.) I’ve explained this to my wife… but I don’t think I’ve talked about it with anyone else really beyond saying “ugh, I can’t stand holes.” But before tonight, I’ve never really verbalized or had words for why/how holes affect me.
Then tonight, I saw a photo on someone’s Facebook wall of a Surinam Toad (google it and you’ll see what I mean)…. I googled it and immediately started shivering and got ill. That google search though brought up the word Trypophobia and I started reading and I was shocked. I seriously had no idea anyone else on the planet felt the same way I did, let alone there was a word for it. Many people’s forum posts and articles were describing “me”. It’s not a debilitating anxiety for me… because it’s rare that I see something that triggers it, but I definitely won’t have a career as a beekeeper. But reading that other people suffer the same anxiety felt like a break through moment for me for some reason. It’s been the ONLY recurring nightmare I’ve had as a lifelong issue (once I got robbed at gunpoint and I had recurring nightmares surrounding that for a few months but it went away, and other situations like that), so to find out there are other people is reassuring somehow.
Reading all about it, of course forced me to see tons of photos about it tonight… and now I have shivers and chills, electric crawling skin, and nausea… but it still feels like a weight off my shoulders for some reason. I’m not going to post any photos here, but if you do an image search for Trypophobia, you’ll find hundreds and you can see what I mean.
Anyone else reading this have the same type of physical reaction or recurring nightmares? It’s 1:20am and I doubt I’ll be able to go to sleep now.
Trypophobia test: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UwE3xcWjfe8