Mounting an escalator with trembling legs or descending a scary slope on their behinds; there is no dearth of acrophobic people whose faces lose color as soon as you mention that taboo word: heights. They don’t just dislike them; they loathe heights with a passion that is stronger than any of Hitler’s speeches.
If you are a stranger to the feelings of vertigo and dizziness when crossing a bridge or simply going downstairs, please read on with an open mind. However, if you are an acrophobic, revisit those nightmarish feelings when you can no longer stop yourself from looking down…
1. Roller Coasters or Ferris Wheels; you will say no to all rides.
And you’ll make up a great excuse. ‘Yeah, I threw up in one of those… when I was three… I’m afraid it might happen again…’
Which means you end up carrying all of your friends’ possessions.
Well, that’s actually a pretty small price to pay… Imagine actually having to take the ride! Your friends don’t know how much safe fun they’re missing out on.
2. Your definition of an adventure: The Mall Escalator
All eyes are on you as you face the monster that invites you into its dark embrace that you may not return from. You muster up the last ounce of courage you have left as you take that one step forward to face your eternal enemy. You wince as the monster takes you away on the ride of your life; better take the stairs next time!
3. Friends and family grab every opportunity to scare the bejeebers out of you.
You’re standing at the balcony, working hard on not looking down, and suddenly somebody taps you from behind!
4. Your loved ones are always trying to ‘cure’ you of this unnatural hate.
How do you explain that there’s nothing to cure; it’s not a flu. It’s chronic and you’ve learned to live with it. Kind of.
5. You get strange impulses to just jump off the edge sometimes.
All right, why does this happen? And it’s such an intense, gripping feeling that you have to distract yourself with thoughts of a happy place.
6. Every movie scene with somebody scaling a great height frightens you to no end.
Despite apparent misgivings, people with acrophobia are fine with their fear, and many have even managed to overcome it successfully. However, we strongly advise against forcing yourself to handle it. There are risks of being frightened into a heart attack or a stroke, so it’s better to stay safe rather than compromising on your health and sanity. And remember, the only thing to fear is fear itself.
16 Feb 2017
23 Jan 2017