Cheoah Dam, North Carolina

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Definitely sounds like submechanophobia, but there is a twist: while a buoy’s mooring or a bunch of rocks with some metal and algae trigger my anxiety, I’m entirely comfortable with the same objects in the same place when I wear full scuba gear – as if the neoprene and breathing apparatus were some sort of armor. Maybe dampening the sense of touch and having “unlimited” air supply defuse the submechanophobia – maybe some might want to try that as part of therapy. Or maybe it is the change of perspective: being underwater defuses the “unseen danger” part of submechanophobia as the object can be clearly observed… It would be like horror movies which are much scarier for what they suggest than when they actually show it.

That said, the scuba gear does nothing against the part of the phobia that involves strong currents: I would still feel extremely uncomfortable diving in a harbour lock, the sort with huge rusty metal doors and huge pumps that churn the whole thing in mere minutes… Merely thinking about it makes my abdomen contract a little…

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