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  • Fears

    I never talk about this because it seems to me so embarrasing.

    My son is afraid of flies! My son and I spend alot of time outside and we really enjoy it, so how can this happen to someone who loves the outdoors?

    Now that the weather is warming up we are starting to see the flies and my son runs if he sees one.

    I bought him a fly swatter but what are we going to do the summer? What about camping?

    It is probably a bit of OCD in him and because flies are so common it is going to be a rough summer.

    Any ideas on how to decrease his fears. Steph

  • #2
    Fears

    I think psychologists have light duty strategies to de sensitize us from irrational or exagerated fear. Fear of flying is handled this way for example using a step by step method of becoming accustomed to the object of our fears.
    Steve
    TouretteLinks Forum

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    • #3
      Fears

      Does anyone else have similar fears? Steph

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      • #4
        Fears

        Steph:

        My son is afraid of spiders, even tiny ones. Though I understand why I have been unable to get him comfortable with them. I have even shown him how we are more in control then they are...

        Steve is right, if you can get a little help it will probably help the situation very much.
        PJK

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        • #5
          Fears

          Hey Steph-
          I'm not afraid of flys but they really irritate me.....so my mom got me this electric fly swatter lol...
          http://www.asseenontvguys.com/index....ROD&ProdID=108
          (sry dont kno how to make a link). But from then on it was like my hobby but my mom thought i became obsessed w/ killing them so she took it away :D He might like that!
          I'm deathly afraid of bee's though!!
          ~Alley

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          • #6
            Fears

            Thanks Alley,

            I am going to get one for my son.

            He is also deathly afraid of bees.

            I don't know how we are going to make it through this summer and I guess camping is out.

            I hate TS+!!! Between the ADHD, OCD, and the fears my son has, I am sick of it!!

            I am sorry, I don't mean to upset anyone.

            I am tired of explaining to myself that its ok when it isn't. He behaves inappropriately at times but he just can't help it. Steph

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            • #7
              Fears

              Steph:

              Camping does not have to be a complete out. With everything in life you must learn to be creative and get around the problem.

              We pitch a tent near the door. We rent a cabin, we use yellow lights to not attract the bugs my son is so afraid of.

              One of my girls is so frightened on insects that she screams, cries, stomps and even makes herself sick. She does not have any disorders and yet that does not stop her from going off with friends to camp.

              It can get better with time. Be patient, it is all still new and different and your son is young. You do not ever have to apologize for your stresses and feelings on this forum.
              You are among friends that can relate and understand.

              Take care.
              PJK

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              • #8
                Fears

                Flies are definitely annoying.

                I'm not afraid of flies in any direct manner, but I'm (to a certain extent) mysophobic.

                Flies aren't exactly known for their cleanliness. They're also not known as things that don't spread diseases.
                Colin

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                • #9
                  Fears

                  I'm not afraid of most insects and have no trouble with walking right up to a scorpion, or letting a tarantula walk on my arm, but cockroaches scare me. They don't just gross me out, they SCARE me... I feel as if they're actually intelligent and looking at me and glaring at me.. I kind of feel this way about wasps too, but at least they're poisionous so it's justifiable.

                  It's funny, in a way, because logically I KNOW theyr'e not actually thinking hateful thoughts about me, but sometimes knowing something logically doesn't really change anything. LOL

                  Did he somehow hear that flies are dirty? Or that they carry diseases? maybe that's the basis of his fear?

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                  • #10
                    Fears

                    Hi Steph,

                    My son was terrified of dogs. He, until recently, would run right out into the street to get away. He really scared me with that. We had trouble going for walks, riding bikes, or just going to people's homes that had dogs. He still is afraid of dogs (mostly large ones now) and he keeps his distance. What is so weird is that he spent the first 5 years of his life with a good sized family dog and he wasn't afraid of him!?!? I've never understood that because our dog was not nasty or mean, but very protective of all of us. We since found out that he is allergic to dogs, cats and feathers. No pets for us!!! I'm not about to have a snake or anything like that for a pet. No offense to snake owners. I think most, kids grow out of these types of fears, at least part of the way and learn to deal with it.

                    Grammy

                    Grammy

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                    • #11
                      Fears

                      most, kids grow out of these types of fears, at least part of the way and learn to deal with it.
                      I hope so because he loves to camp but hates the flies.

                      Flies are know to spread diseases and there are certainly enough commercials on about the west nile virus.

                      He is already asking to go camping but as soon as he sees a fly he totally loses control of himself and freaks.

                      But we both enjoy it so much, I will figure out a way for us to go.

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                      • #12
                        Fears

                        I'm picturing some kind of beekeeper suit.

                        It's hard, but the best way to overcome an irrational fear is exposure to that which you're afraid of.

                        Of course, an anxiety disorder makes that step much higher, but it can be done. Patience, and persistence. :/
                        Colin

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                        • #13
                          Fears

                          Stephanie:

                          OCD has nothing to do with anything. It seems to be rumaging around in our brains, looking for stuff to scare us with. If we get scared, upset, grossed out, frightened, it almost acts like that is a good response, and it tries it again, until it becomes on Obsession. Again, I am personifying something in order to explain it generally. The anxiety it causes is its food. It literally eats at us by upsetting us, expending our energy on these ridiculous ideas and concepts.

                          Speaking of Ridiculous, did you read or see the third Harry Potter book, Prisoner of Azkaban? There is a creature in there, called a Boggart, that takes the form of your worst fear, and attacks you with it. There is a beautiful moment in the move / book where the Professor explains how to defeat it - change it just slightly, in order to make it FUNNY. Laughing at the Boggart makes it go away, weakens it.

                          I can not emphasize enough how this description of the Boggart EXACTLY matches my personal experience of my OCD, as well as the descriptions I picked up in my support groups from other Touretters. So I tried a little experiment a few years ago, and I have no idea which came first, the idea or the Boggart, but I started to make myself LAUGH at my OCD. Guess what? Worked. Looking back, I wish I'd thought of it sooner.

                          Anxiety. OCD is an Anxiety Disorder. If you and your son feed the Boggart by worrying about camping and summer, then you feed the OCD. You give it life. I wish it were not true, but that is they way mine works as well. And yes, it SUCKS. Fighting back is not appropriate - you have to starve it. Fighting is anxiety and anxiety is what it WANTS. Laughter, as I hope we all agree, is an awesome way to relieve anxiety.

                          Yes, this sounds silly. At first, I had to really force myself to go through the motions of laughing at my worst OCD. I felt like an idiot. Not any more. Laughing at my OCD has become very natural after some practice, kind of like potty-training (sorry for that analogy). But the mechanics of laughter change your neuro-chemistry, and that is the game.

                          So laugh at it, and laugh with your son. The only trick is to make sure he
                          knows you are finding his OCD silly, not him. That takes a little work, but it is still worth every bit of effort.


                          One more thing about insects, real quick-like. Part of your brain, the amygdala, gets the signals from your senses to your reptile brain way before your human brain. It is how we are able to jump out of the way of cars in the street - if we had to 'figure it out' we'd be paste. Vermin of all kinds are hard-wired in as things we should react to, especially snakes. Hey, we're mammals, after all. Bugs, especially cockroaches and spiders, are on the list, too. Spiders are not actually insects, but arachnids, and eat the bad insects. Our fear of them is pretty silly at this point, at least in most of North America. Cockroaches are a health issue, but not lethal or poisonous.

                          So why do cockroaches make me jump up and scream at the top of my lungs? (How embarrassing...) It is a combination of my amygdala and my OCD. Creepy crawlys - yuck! I literally berate myself for overreacting before I have landed. Ha ha. So it is not so uncommon for someone to be afraid / OCD about flying insects, ants, spiders. It is an easy thing for our OCD to pick on, since it is an old hard-wired fear.

                          So, my advice is to work on helping your son see how silly the fear of flies is, and try to hamstring the anxiety machine. Hey, it might work. :-)
                          Darin M. Bush, The Tourette Tiger, author of "Tiger Trails"
                          http://www.facebook.com/tourettetiger

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                          • #14
                            Fears

                            My son had his bike stolen and therefore never really learned how to ride a two wheel bike.

                            I never pushed him before and I just accepted that he didn't want to get one. He told me that if he got another bike then the bad people would come back and take his new bike and other things therefore, he would never let me get him another bike.

                            This summer I said to him that he has to learn before he gets too old therefore I told him that I am going to buy him another bike! Well it only took him a few days and he learned how to do it! I am very proud of him and more importantly he is proud of himself!

                            Have you encouraged your child to overcome their fears?

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                            • #15
                              Fears

                              I won't let my daughters OCD dictate how I parent her in general. I've had to adapt to the fact that she is very OCD, but I feel confident saying that I have some experience with working through or around OCD.

                              Usually, she does not in fact dislike or fear whatever the thing is. My confidence and sturdiness (uh - forcefulness?) helps her get through a lot of things. She has no memory for food, and the answer to, "Do you want to eat <whatever>?" is always NO. Well, I don't ask her anymore. I just put food down on her plate, based on MY memory of her eating habits, and that's what's for dinner.

                              In the movie Awakenings, Dr. Oliver Sacks (Dr. Sayer is the character's name, but it's based on Sacks) talks about one of his patients 'borrowing the will of the ball' when someone threw her a tennis ball, and she caught it. She was almost totally catatonic, frozen, so this was amazing. I've embraced this idea of 'borrowing will' and it seems to help with OCD a lot.

                              In the case of dinner, my daughter eats what I think she likes. I know that's horribly oversimplified, but it gets the point across. Sometimes, she'll endure something she has OCD about if I'm there to bolster her, to let her 'borrow' some will from Daddy. It seems to work.
                              Darin M. Bush, The Tourette Tiger, author of "Tiger Trails"
                              http://www.facebook.com/tourettetiger

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