There is a beauty to the myths we embrace from an historical perspective. We recoil at the thought of ancient fictional creature, gods and demigods who live in a time and space that we don’t always understand. In the end we marvel at the stories and place those mythological creatures into stories we read and watch today. Most people appreciate the literary place mythology has, but there are some who have a genuine fear of myths. In fact this fear can extend to fictional stories and lies that others may tell. This fear is known as Mythophobia.
This fear can affect everything from childhood bedtime stories to pranks that may be instigated in the workplace. The fear can feel a little like mass betrayal especially if those who lie to recreate stories know the fear exists in the individual to whom they are talking.
What Causes Mythophobia?
This fear may be seen in individuals who come from a legalistic religious background. They may conclude that the stories they hear are counterproductive to the religious instruction they are learning and can come to fear myths and stories as something that could serve to distract or sever them from what they are learning about religious conviction.
The fear may be more organic as well. The individual may fear the possibility that characters within the story could come to life and harm them. Intellectually they may agree this is impossible, but the fear can still exist and touch a multitude of areas in their lives.
The fear can also be the result of an individual who has seen this fear modeled by an older trusted family member or friend. The fear experienced as a result of modeling can be incredibly strong – and can be passed along to a new generation.
Symptoms of Mythophobia
This individual will not read mythological stories and they will refuse to attend most theatrical events. They will often deal with facts and resist anything that starts with “Once upon a time”. They may enjoy a good story, but it has to be real. If it is fiction they will no longer be interested.
Other symptoms may also include…
- Air hunger
- Loss of control
- Panic attacks
- An urge to flee
- The feeling you may be losing your mind
There can be a profound sense of personal frustration that happens within the mythophobe. This is the result of a person who has intellectually concluded there is nothing to fear, but their responses indicate they have little control over their emotional response.
How to Overcome Mythophobia
As with all fears it makes sense to learn more about your fear. Once you do this you may want to gain additional assistance from a therapist who can take your desire to change and blend it with techniques designed to confront your fear and learn new ways to respond to that fear. Many people are surprised to discover the root cause of their fear. Believe it or not it is not usually myths.
The fear of myths is also referred to as:
- Myth phobia
- Myth fear