Fear of the Dark...

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-18-2003
Fear of the Dark...
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 1:34pm

Good Morning!

I was wondering if any of you have had any experience or known any adults with an extreme fear of the dark.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-25-2004
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 2:37pm

It's not unusual for people to have phobias, and they manifest in a myriad of ways. It's a common anxiety disorder. Seeing someone may help her begin to cope with it, and perhaps overcome it. There's a type of therapy that addresses phobias specifically, called Exposure Therapy. I've known many a person who's had great success with it. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy may be useful to her as well. When searching out someone to see, it may be good to ask if they have experience with either or both of those kinds of therapy.

Please let her know that she is not alone in dealing with anxiety. A phobia can be a debilitating thing, and literally hundreds of thousands of people deal with them on a daily basis. There is no shame in having a phobia, and there is no shame in seeking help. Should she decided to seek out help, it's not a sign of weakness or of giving up on handling it herself. The choice to get help is an empowered choice of a person who is ready to take her life back and live it on her terms. Because, believe me, a therapist may help guide her to the other side of anxiety, but it will be her that is doing the work, committing to the process, experiencing the discomfort of change and challenge, every step of the way.

Please invite her to join us here on the boards as well. We're more than happy to give her an additional avenue of support, answer any questions she may have and just help her out in any way we can.

Take care,


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-11-2004
Thu, 09-02-2010 - 4:07pm
Hi, Gem & welcome! You are one amazing mom! Unless you actually have fears/phobias/anxiety yourself, you have an understanding attitude that most of our friends & families do not have. Your dd is lucky to have you.
If your dd recognizes the need for help & seeks it, that will be great! Unfortunately, for many of us, we dragged our feet to get the necessary treatment. In our heads we think it isn't so bad. That if we were stronger we could overcome it w/out help. Some of us were ashamed. Afraid of the judgement of others. I can say that most of us reached a point where living w/the fear was so horrible, that we re-adjusted our heads & finally went to help. Your dd may be @ that point or very near to it. Try not to nag her to seek treatment. She's an adult & must make the decision herself & in her own time. Continuing to be supportive as you have been, is great. OTOH, there's a very fine line between support & enabling. I was able to manipulate my family to do things for me & put off getting the help I needed.
Like Jess, it would be nice to see your dd posting to this community. We'd be happy to listen & share our stories w/her. It's very helpful to know that we're NOT alone. Others have similiar anxieties & have learned ways to cope.
GL & GBU! Keep in touch. I do hope your dd finds some peace w/her fear. (((hugs))) jan