Peanut Butter Nightmares And Other Lesser-Known Phobias


Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s famous quote “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” was intended to boost public morale in the wake of the Great Depression, but Mr. Roosevelt may not have been considering phobophobiacs.

Phobophobia is “the abnormal fear of developing a phobia,” i.e., people who fear “fear itself.”


Teratophobia refers to the chilling and highly specific fear of giving birth to a monster.

Perhaps relatedly, peak usage of this term corresponds with the release of the film Rosemary’s Baby in 1968.


Sure, we all prefer a day at the beach to a day at the desk, but those with ergophobia take the Sunday Scaries and cases of the Mondays to the next level.

Defined as “an abnormal fear of work,” don’t expect someone suffering from this fear to be putting their noses near a grindstone any time soon.


Some people will travel halfway around the world for a glimpse of Machu Picchu or Stonehenge. But those with this unofficial phobia are happy to keep their distance from these ancient structures.Atephobia means “fear of ruins.” Perhaps anyone who’s fought the long lines at The Colosseum in Rome might at least have an inkling of an understanding of this one.


This niche, nine-syllable word is quite the mouthful.Arachibutyrophobia is “the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth.” Although this phobia may not be widespread, anyone who grew up eating PB&J sandwiches can highly relate.


Does the idea of living forever make you a little woozy? You might be an apeirophobe.Apeirophobia refers to “the fear of eternity, or infinity.” Some might experience the tingling of this phobia when thoughtfully considering the cosmos. Or the afterlife. Or the waiting time for DMV drop-ins.


Imagine the scene: two lovers walking shoulder-to-shoulder along a cobblestoned Parisian street, the moonlight illuminating the fog around them. But if said moonlit lovers suffered from homichlophobia, their hearts would be racing more out of fear than attraction.Homichlophobia is “the specific, abnormal fear of fog”—something anyone who’s seen John Carpenter’s 1980 horror film, The Fog, can relate to.


Aulophobes are unlikely to be excited about Jethro Tull, or woodwind-heavy symphonies, or the Native American fertility deity, Kokopelli.Aulophobia refers to “a deep (and deeply specific) fear of flutes.” Example sentence: “Your child’s flute lessons are making aulophobes out of all your neighbors.”


String is probably something you don’t think much about. Maybe it’s something you use to hold things together. Or maybe you find it handy for entertaining kittens.

But for some, string is the source of their deepest fear. Linonophobia is “the abnormal phobia of string.”

Click to read more
Word of the Day

Can you guess the definition?


[ sal-muh-guhn-dee ]

Can you guess the definition?

Word of the day

[ sal-muh-guhn-dee ]