10 Strange Phobias That Really Exist

Published April 23, 2014
Updated July 31, 2019

Biologically speaking, developing a phobia is as easy as experiencing a traumatic event and consistently relating that event to something (often arbitrary) that was present when the event transpired. So while it’s possible for someone to develop an irrational fear of almost anything, one wonders how the afflicted parties of some of the following strange phobias manage to successfully function in their everyday lives:

Strange Phobias: Barophobia

Barophobia

Source: Edu Blogs

Barophobia, or the fear of gravity, can manifest itself in a few different ways. An individual plagued with this crippling phobia is frightened that the pull of gravity will eventually crush them, or alternatively, that gravity will cease to exist and they will simply float off the face of the Earth. Strangely, a valid type of treatment for this phobia is listed as “exposure therapy”. We’re not sure how such a therapy would appear, exactly, but we would imagine it would look a lot like pure existence.

Strange Phobias: Geliophobia

Strange Phobias Laughing

Source: Baba Klix

Geliophobia is the fear of laughter, and can be experienced by hearing others laugh, or by one’s own laughter. As with many phobias, symptoms vary in intensity – ranging from shortness of breath or rapid breathing to extreme anxiety, nausea, and uncontrollable shaking.

Strange Phobias: Caligynephobia

Strange Phobias Fear Of Beautiful Women

Source: Imgur

Unlike Raj from the Big Bang Theory, who is thought to be suffering from gynephobia (the fear of all women) caligynephobia is the distinct fear of beautiful women; at least the ones the sufferer deems to be beautiful. Some have a constant fear, while others respond fearfully to more direct stimuli. We can’t imagine how caligynephobiacs would fare at a Miss America pageant.

author
Erin Kelly
author
An All That's Interesting writer since 2013, Erin Kelly focuses on historic places, natural wonders, environmental issues, and the world of science. Her work has also been featured in Smithsonian and she's designed several book covers in her career as a graphic artist.
editor
John Kuroski
editor
John Kuroski is the editorial director of All That's Interesting. He graduated from New York University with a degree in history, earning a place in the Phi Alpha Theta honor society for history students. An editor at All That's Interesting since 2015, his areas of interest include modern history and true crime.
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Kelly, Erin. "10 Strange Phobias That Really Exist." AllThatsInteresting.com, April 23, 2014, https://allthatsinteresting.com/strange-phobias. Accessed June 25, 2024.