This article will brief about Virginitiphobia. Then it will focus on the symptoms and causes of virginitiphobia.
Later it will highlight Treatment methods, both psychotherapies, and medications.
Virginitiphobia refers to the fear of rape or being raped. This is an irrational fear which creates anxiety and even panic attacks with a mere thought of being around people and being raped.
People suffering from this find it difficult to be around people as the constant thought of rape and being raped scares the person.
Although the number of people suffering from Virginitiphobia is less it affects women more than men.
Women fear men around them, the constant fear of getting raped doesn’t let them even interact with anyone.
There are some cases that involve men as well and they also have the same fear.
These people make themselves isolated and don’t interact much which leads to many psychological problems.
The most common disorders which can trigger people with Virginitiphobia or can be co-morbid disorders are OCD, Insomnia, and Depression. Both these disorders have their own effects on health and can make the condition worse.
SYMPTOMS OF VIRGINITIPHOBIA:
The main symptom of virginitiphobia which can be derived from the word phobia itself is intense anxiety and it depends on several factors like genetics, environmental factors and the severity of the condition.
They try to avoid seeing news channels and newspapers as these are the places where they see these crimes.
These things can trigger anxiety, fear and sleepless nights
Lack of self-esteem and lack of self-confidence have been seen in these patients, some patients isolate themselves from the world and live alone.
These people sometimes don’t even bother about their physical health and therefore neglect their eating habits.
They always try to avoid people around them as this may be the triggering factor of the phobia.
Closed places where there encounter with people is possible and no escape is possible like school, office, etc. then this condition can get worse.
Some more common symptoms are-
- Anxiety or Panic attacks with a mere thought of the rape
- Breathlessness when being with people or around people, even when at home alone and overthinking of rape.
- Trembling and shaking of legs when sees news of such kind
- Feelings of helplessness
- Sweating and Muscle Tension
CAUSES OF VIRGINITIPHOBIA:
There is no certain cause that has been found so far for Virginitiphobia, though, there are several factors that contribute to this condition.
One factor would be genetics, as a person who has a history of anxiety disorders or phobias are more likely to develop Virginitiphobia.
Another factor would be the environment in which the person has been brought up.
Both factors are likely to play important roles in developing Ochophobia.
Someone developing a fear of rape can be because of the involvement in an assault or harassment in childhood, or even worse, seen a rape in childhood, which might have left her/him traumatized.
It can also be developed due to already suffering from a disorder like obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), like obsession with rape or being raped.
There is no particular treatment that has been designed especially for Virginitiphobia.
But some treatments which have been proved to be helpful in anxiety and phobias have been considered to be helpful with Virginitiphobia as well and those are-
- Talk Therapy-
Talk Therapy can be beneficial for someone suffering from an irrational fear of rape as it can help the patient to let out all the fears she has in a constructive way and it eventually helps in developing new and more constructive thinking patterns.
- Exposure Therapy:
It is one of the most common and effective therapy with patients suffering from anxiety and phobias.
It works by having the therapist slowly expose the patient to which she fears ie. photos of being raped (movie scenes or clips) in an attempt to desensitize her about it.
This can be a tricky task as rape is a very sensitive issue and if not handled with care it might result in the opposite and therefore the therapist should be very well versed experienced.
It is an 8-week evidence-based program that offers mindfulness training to help people suffering from anxiety, stress, depression, etc. Mindfulness meditation can significantly help people suffering from virginitiphobia, it will help one in distracting herself from her fear by refocusing her attention on something else, like breathing.
This is the most basic and easiest way one can meditate and be in the present.
CBT helps in challenging the absolutes one has in her mind and then restructuring the already set prenotions and mindset about a particular pattern and thoughts.
- Anti-anxiety medications:
These medications are very helpful in preventing panic attacks and anxiety issues. It is very helpful when the condition is very severe.
Some common anti-anxiety medications are Xanax, Valium, Klonopin, etc.
These medications should be taken only in the supervision of a medical professional.
These medications aren’t only for people who suffer from depression as they can also help people suffering from anxiety disorders such as Ochophobia.
Some common antidepressants are Paxil, Zoloft, Lexapro, etc. These types of drugs are taken on a daily basis and can be helpful in preventing panic attacks and daily anxiety issues.
But always consider consulting a psychiatrist first before starting or stopping any medications.
Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.
This blog defined about Virginitiphobia. Then it focused on the symptoms and causes of virginitiphobia.
Later it highlighted Treatment methods, both psychotherapies, and medications.
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What we recommend for Phobias
- If you are suffering from Phobias then ongoing professional counselling may be your ideal first point of call. Counselling will utilize theories such as Cognitive behavioural therapy which will help you address the fears you are facing.
- Phobias and anxiety go hand in hand and in the end they result in Panic. A panic course such as this may help you alleviate those feelings of fears as it has with over 50,000 people.
- Weighted Blankets may help you sleep better if your phobias are affecting your quality of sleep. Weighted blankets apply enough weight on you that they make you feel much more relaxed and calm at night.