General Question

Supergirl's avatar

How do I get over my fear of bugs?

Asked by Supergirl (1671 points ) December 21st, 2008

I have an awful fear of bugs. Any bug. Including ladybugs and butterflies. How can I get over this to a certain extent? It is frustrating!!

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23 Answers

augustlan's avatar

Gradual exposure is usually the method to ‘cure’ phobias. I have linked specifically to insect phobia. Good luck!

queenzboulevard's avatar

You should put yourself in their shoes. Think like a bug, feel like a bug. When you have become one with insects in your mind, then will your fear will no longer be there, because you will have been an insect and realized they’re not so bad after all.

I’m 22% kidding. What you should really do is think about what you fear about insects. When you see one, think “what could happen to me?” If the odds that something really bad could happen because of that bug, get scared. More likely, the odds will be better that nothing will happen to you because of that bug.

If you’re scared a ladybug will land on your eye, think “what would happen if a ladybug landed on my eye?” Nothing would happen if a ladybug landed on your eye, because ladybugs don’t do anything but stink when you squish them, which is also harmless. Same with a butterfly. All they do is fly around. If you’re scared one will fly into your hair, think “what’s worst case scenario if this butterfly flies into my hair?” Well again, nothing, because butterflies can’t do anything either. Neither can ants or beetles or crickets or cockroaches or moths.

You can be afraid of bees and spiders if you want. Worst case scenario there is you swell up and die or get poisoned and die, and death is a common thing to be afraid of so it’s OK.

krose1223's avatar

counter conditioning

(Let me know if that link doesn’t work and I’ll get another.)

gooch's avatar

Eat them

krose1223's avatar

Aww come on aug, you know you want to

MacBean's avatar

om nom nom

augustlan's avatar

Double ewwwww!

asmonet's avatar

Dump some on your head, or better yet, come to Northern Virginia next time the cicadas come out to make babies. Good times.

You can cook them too! They taste like peanut butter. Sorta…

bythebay's avatar

asmonet: we had so many cicadas during the last phase the sound was deafening and they were even on the screens. That’s enough to create a phobia.

GAMBIT's avatar

Find out which bugs are actually harmful most aren’t and some are even good for the environment.

You may want to go to the library and get a book on the bugs that are common in your area.

Education is always the key.

90s_kid's avatar

I am not afraid of bugs anymore. But I have a serious Arachnophobia so I need this question too!

MissAnthrope's avatar

Exposure therapy.

Myself, I was really arachnophobic, and what I did was research spiders. The different types, how they catch their prey, etc. I haven’t worked hard enough to completely extinguish my fears, but by learning about them, my fear has gotten a LOT more manageable. I can now be in the same room with a spider without totally freaking out. Now my issue is having them on me.. I will definitely freak out. Also, I still have a bit of a problem with the gigantic spiders, but it’s way more liveable than it was.

90s_kid's avatar

I fainted once when I saw a spider. But that’s what I have been doing. Spiders are interesting, but gross!

asmonet's avatar

@bythebay: Nah, I just ate some and threw the rest on the cheerleaders. It was awesome.

jessturtle23's avatar

Take an entomology class. Many schools offer them as continuing education classes. You get to collect bugs and stick needles through them. You also get to learn about what their purpose is and if they can hurt you. If you enjoy gardening you can learn about integrated pest management which is using insects like lady bugs to eat aphids off of your plants. I really don’t like cicadas because they can get stuck in my hair and they are big and they scream when my cats bite into them. I have never eaten one.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@90s_kid, go here and learn that your fear of spiders is quite unfounded. The key to getting over a fear of bugs and spiders is education, as someone else up there said. I’m too lazy to go look. Once you realize the truth about spiders, instead of the BS most people assume is true, you too will see them as they are; fascinating creatures to be admired, not to be feared. I saw a couple of spiders crawl across my desk this morning. I simply waved and let them go on their way. It actually made me smile, because it was another living creature that shares my office.

laxrrockr18's avatar

DAMIT!!!! @gooch took mine

Mammamooo's avatar

I ate maggots as a kid in instant masged potatoes, I have a severe fear of bugs that causes major anxiety and I freeze up, almost catatonic.

MacBean's avatar

@Mammamooo How did that incident impact your relationship with potatoes?

Mammamooo's avatar

@ MacBean I have not eaten instant potatos in over 16 years.

MacBean's avatar

@Mammamooo I absolutely do not blame you. It didn’t even happen to me and I think I might never eat them again!

Mantralantis's avatar

Maybe to not worry about the things that…bug yourself.

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