Is Harry Potter’s Fear a Phobia? A List of Phobias to Include in Your Book

Is Harry Potter's Fear a Phobia A List of Phobias to Include in Your Book

Wait… Harry Potter suffers from a phobia?

Well, I’m no expert, but I was looking into phobias and I found this charming little fellow: phobophobia, a.k.a. the fear of fear.

Why did I think Harry might have it?

Remember the boggart? The creature that takes on the shape that would scare you the most?

With Harry, it took the form of a another creature – a Dementor.

The Dementors feed upon your happiness, leaving you in despair and afraid – the thing Harry is apparently most afraid of.

Even Lupin said so in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: “That suggests that what you fear most of all is – fear.

At first I thought “Oh, wow, Harry has a phobia”, but then I realized something: a phobia is the abnormal, irrational fear of something.

Harry has every reason to be scared of the Dementors. Not only do they feast on all your positive emotions, but can also literally suck out your soul.

I’d say that’s a very rational fear in the Harry Potter universe.

So, in the end, I reached the conclusion that Harry does not suffer from phobophobia.

However, that doesn’t mean you can’t make your characters go bonkers because of it.

Or another phobia.

And to make things easy for you, I’ve made a list of some popular and some obscure ones for you to enjoy torturing your characters with… I mean, for you to use so your characters could develop.

‘Cause, you know, writers never torture their characters just for poop and giggles…

Anyway, here’s the list:

  1. acrophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of high places
  2. aerophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of air
  3. androphobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of men
  4. anthophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of flowers (yeah, it surprised me too; at first I thought it would be fear of ants…)
  5. atelophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of imperfection
  6. autophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of loneliness/solitude
  7. belonephobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of sharply pointed objects, especially needles
  8. claustrophobia – no, not the fear of Santa Claus; it’s the abnormal/irrational fear of enclosed spaces
  9. cyberphobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of computers
  10. demophobia/ochlophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of crowds
  11. doraphobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of fur (not something Cruella De Vil suffers from)
  12. ecclesiophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of the church (apparently, this one can be due to two things – a fear of what the church represents or a fear of the architectural structure of the church building)
  13. eleutherophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of freedom
  14. erythrophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of blushing
  15. gamophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of marriage
  16. gephyrophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of crossing bridges
  17. gynophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of women
  18. hadephobia/stygiophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of Hell
  19. haemophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of blood
  20. hagiophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of saints
  21. kakorrhaphiaphobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of failure
  22. necrophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of corpses (mind your autocorrect on this one, ’cause things will get awkward if your writing program decides to change “phobia” to “philia”)
  23. panophobia/pantophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of everything
  24. phasmophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of ghosts (Who you gonna call?)
  25. pogonophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of beards
  26. satanophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of Satan
  27. taphephobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of being buried alive
  28. theophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of God
  29. zoophobia – the abnormal/irrational fear of animals

So, how can you include these in your writing?

Well, they can deliver some funny moments or be a source of a major conflict.

For example, your MC could suffer from ecclesiophobia (fear of church), but come from a very religious family. How would this affect the dynamics in that family?

Or, maybe, you want to write a Rom Com. Your MC inherits his great-grandfather’s huge estate after he marries. The catch? He suffers from gamophobia (fear of marriage).

Or the MC who suffers from zoophobia (fear of animals) wants to get close to the cute neighbor who lives across the hall… And who owns a dog, two cats and an army of guinea pigs. Oh, and don’t forget the goldfish; that little dude is really fishy.

See?

There are lots of ways to incorporate phobias in your books. And even though I gave examples with your MC suffering from one, you can generously bestow it to his/her best friend, parent or sibling.

Heck, your book can even be about a group of people who suffer from different phobias and get together to support each other.

Go crazy with the plot; it’s your book!

Love lists? Want more?

Well, you are in luck! I’ve got three for you:

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