It has been said that music transcends cultural and language barriers by speaking to the heart. We’ve even heard that music soothes the savage beast. Many times an individual will hear music and remember a time and place in their past that is somehow emotionally tied to the music. Many who find themselves in nursing homes may be unresponsive to almost everything but music. The melody we hear can somehow become a part of who we are. This is the beauty of music, and perhaps the inspiration for Melophobia or the fear of music.
Many people who are deaf love to “feel” music, children love to hear music to lull them to sleep and radio dials are being used to find music that connects the listener with a certain mood or thought.
What Causes Melophobia?
Smells, objects, tastes and even sounds are portals to the memories we have stored in our minds. For most those memory inducers are welcome. They provide an ability to powerfully return to place we may have forgotten about for years. Those things that are positive to most of us serve to send the melophobe to a place of fear. For these individuals music can be the emotional trigger that sends them back to a place of fear and perhaps even torment.
In the movie, Sybil, played by Sally Fields it was music that triggered a fearful memory of her mother that was overwhelming to the character.
In most cases the actual music is less a reason to fear than what the music triggers within those individuals.
Personal ties to music as a fear trigger are the primary cause for this phobia development. However, in some cases it can be learned by observing another trusted person who lives with the fear.
Symptoms of Melophobia
If a melophobe listens to music at all it will likely be a very limited play list and certainly very controlled. In all other cases they will avoid music. Since music is played in malls, grocery stores and business offices the phobic personality may find social interaction or even employment difficult if their expectation is no music at all.
Other symptoms may also include…
- Elevated heart rate
- Panic attack
- Air hunger
- An urge to flee
- Control loss
It may not be surprising to learn this fear exists. We live in one of the most anxiety laden times in history. We are stressed out, overworked and under nourished. We overeat and wonder what we are missing out in in life. Fear follows us ever step of the way. Some handle the pressure better than others.
How to Overcome Melophobia
You may find that you will need help learning to rediscover the beauty in music. Music is not inherently good or evil, it is simply a means of conveying emotion. Therapy sessions can help you deal with the fear as well as the underlying causes for the phobic reactions.
The fear of music is also referred to as:
- Music phobia
- Music fear